Yangon Cultural & Historical To Do Video Guide
Welcome to Yangon, the commercial capital of Myanmar, a nation of 51.5 million known as Asia’s last frontier with its recent opening to the west. While the city of Yangon has just over 5 million residents, a word of caution – it’s changing fast. If you’re interested in culture and history, now is the time to visit. Tag along with our host, Natalie Scarr, as she uncovers gems of the past.
National Museum of Myanmar
If you’re looking for Myanmar national history, you’ve reached the right place – all five floors of it. One highlight not to be missed is a golden Lion Throne which belonged to the last King of Myanmar — the throne towers nearly 8 meters high!
Other important historical items include a display on the evolution the Myanmar script and alphabet, ornate royal clothing and much more.
British Influence in Myanmar (Burma)
From 1824 to 1948 Bruma was under British control and as a result you’ll find the greatest concentration of colonial era buildings in Southeast Asia here in downtown Yangon. Enjoy high noon tea at The Stand Hotel and as you walk around you can picture to yourself what the city may have looked like 100 years ago.
The Yangon Central Railway Station located dates back to the British era and is the largest railway station in Myanmar. However, it was destroyed in World War 2 by the Japanese and re-built by the Burmese in 1954. The station is in use today and while slow, train one of a few ways to get around this nation where domestic travel can be a challenge.
Burmese History in Clothing
While traveling here, keep your eye out of the wearing of Longzyi by both men and women. It’s an elegant fabric worn knotted at the waist down to the feet. When you see swirls of yellow on the cheeks of locals, what you’re looking at is Thanaka tree powder, native to Myanmar and used for sun protection.
Buddhist History in Yangon
Finally, there’s a lot of buddhist history in Yangon. There’s little known but absolutely spectacular reclining Buddha at Bahan Township. This is a must see!
When it comes to facts and figures, construction started in 1899 and the statue is 66 meters long. What’s more incredible is the reclining Buddha was rebuilt in the 1950s with glass eyes which are nearly 2 meters tall. If that’s not enough, the Buddha’s crown is now encrusted with diamonds and other precious stones.
Did you know Myanmar is also known as the Golden Land? If not, you do now. Why? The answer is simple, the nation loves its gold with monuments and pagodas. This leads us to jewel in Yangon’s heart, the Shwedagon Pagoda. Covered in 6 tonnes of real gold and 99 meters in height with a 76 carat diamond at its very top, the Shwedagon Pagoda is thought to be the oldest Buddhist stupa in the world and can seen from across the city. It’s the most sacred Buddhist site in Myanmar is an absolute must-see.
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