10 things To Do in Mandalay - Part 2
6. Eat at one of Mandalay’s many street food joints.
The beauty of exploring the city by bicycle is, that you are totally flexible and free to do what you like. In terms of food this means you can just cruise down the road, look for a place that seems inviting and then sample some of the local food. The best thing about Myanmar cuisine is, that you always get a pot of complimentary tea. It’s just good, goes well with the food and it’s sociable.
7. Discover Amarapura and U Bein Bridge.
Amarapura is now a township of Mandalay but used to be the capital of Myanmar for a some time. The township is mainly known for its silk and cotton weaving, the big Maha Gandhayon Kyaung monastery complex and the world’s largest teak wood bridge, U Bein Bridge.
U Bein Bridge, stretching over scenic Taungthaman Lake, is one of Burma's most iconic sights. Mandalay and its surrounding ancient cities have an abundance of attractions and sunset views, but if you only have time for one in Mandalay, it would have to be U Bein Bridge .
Maha-Gandhayon-Kyaung monastery is famous for the "feeding of the monks", where hundreds of monks come to receive food and offerings at 10:00 each day. During its off-hours though, the packs disperse and leave a spacious monastery that makes for a beautiful walk.
8. Enjoy the view from Sagaing Hill.
Sagain is a little outside of Mandalay and to get there you have to cross the Ayeyarwady River. Sagaing and especially its famous hill going by the same name are one of the main centers of Buddhism in Myanmar. Sagaing Hill is home to more than 600 monasteries and stupas and more than 6,000 monks and nuns. Once up on the top you have sweeping views down to the river banks, Sagaing Bridge and the many temples crowding the numerous hills around it.
9. Take the ferry over to Inwa.
The boat came and took me to Inwa, one of the ancient cities. Once there, people usually take a horse cart to get around but I just felt like walking a bit and enjoyed the scenery and the old stupas along the way.
10. Take a ferry over to Mingun.
First there is the huge Mingun Pahtodawgyi Pagoda. The unfinished pagoda would have been the largest in the world if the king of that time would have not decided to stop building. With its big cracks from an earthquake, the construction still is so massive and most impressive.
Only about 200 meters away is beautiful Hsinbyume Pagoda which is very distinctive in style – all white and decorated with very intricate designs on the outside.
The last thing Mingun features is the world’s largest ringing bell. It was cast for the huge stupa and because of the unfinished work was never put to work. The bell weighs more than 90 tons only surpassed by a bell in Russia which isn’t functioning though.