Roof of an Inwa Temple, near Mandalay in Myanmar.

Inwa's Temples, Pagodas and Monasteries.

Taking a day trip by car from Mandalay to visit the former Royal Capital City of Inwa (Ava) and look at the beautiful old temples and monasteries.

A lone Pagoda near Inwa - Myanmar. For half of the last 650 years Inwa has on four occasions been the capital of Burma - the first occurrence being in 1364 when it was founded by King Thadominbya.
Many organized day trips involve getting to the various locations by crossing the river on a boat and then being taken around some of the main locations on a horse and cart. The advantage of using your own transport is that horse and cart trips do not stop at all the monuments, whilst being in a car means you can go to many more locations - and take your time at each if you wish.
If travelling by car, as soon as you turn off the main road out of Mandalay, the stupas and shrines soon appear alongside the road-side and can be seen out in the fields. There are also glimpses of the old city walls - however only a few fragments remain of what must have been an unusual and impressive sight as the shape was of a sitting lion i.e. not square. The countryside around Inwa is beautiful - there are plenty of trees around, fields stretching out and farmers working in them.
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Le Htat Gyi Paya stuccos,Inwa,  Myanmar. Le Htat Gyi Paya at Inwa, Myanmar. Le Htat Gyi Paya - south Mandalay, Myanmar.

Le Htat Gyi Praya and Sandamuni Payas - Myanmar.

There are a large group of interesting stupas close to Inwa South Village - for instance these pictures show several really nice old Sandamuni buildings which are literally a few steps off the road. Nearbye to these are the remains of Le Htat Gyi Praya - a beautiful building which once had four stories - although it is now somewhat ruined and overgrown , quite a significant amount of the stucco work is still visible especially around the bottom of the building.
Small white stupas in the Sandamuni area, Myanmar.
Sandamuni area
Sandamuni Paya, Inwa, Myanmar.
Sandamuni Paya
Several stupas at Sandamuni - Inwa, Myanmar.
Sandamuni Stupa
Sandamuni Payas, south Mandalaym Myanmar.
Sandamuni Paya

Yadana Hsemee Pagoda, Inwa, Myanmar.

The Yadanasini Pagoda (or Yadana Hsemee Pagoda) in Myanmar.

Firstly note that to enter this small complex of brick stupas you have to remove your shoes. The stupas are interesting to walk around however the outsides are somewhat overgrown in places. There is a statue of a large seated Buddha - this is situated between four pillars so presumably this was once another Pagoda or Stupa with a now destroyed roof. There are also smaller Buddha statues in stupas which are shaded by giant Flame Trees and finally a fairly large sitting Buddha sort of sat out on his own.
Stupas at Yadana Hsemee Pagoda, Inwa, Myanmar.
Yadana Hsemee Pagoda
Yadana Hsemee Pagoda Buddha, Inwa, Myanmar.
Yadana Hsemee Pagoda
Yadana Hsemee Paya stupas at Inwa, Myanmar.
Yadana Hsemee Pagoda
Yedanasini Paya Sitting Buddha - Inwa, Myanmar.
Yadanasini Paya

The Bagaya Kyaung - Teak Monastery - Inwa, Myanmar.

This is one of the most popular sites in the area and very busy especially with the horse and cart tour groups. Access to the site is across a field track which is really bumpy and very dusty. Near the parking area there are usually plenty of children selling postcards and trinkets and also stalls selling local handicraft. The 7 storey teak monastery is quite impressive - it is sat on 267 teak posts the largest of which is 60 feet high and has a circumference of 9 feet. The size of the monastery is an indication of it's royal status.
Bagaya Kyaung white Stupas, Inwa, Myanmar.
Bagaya Kyaung
Bagaya Kyaung accommodation area, Inwa in Myanmar.
Bagaya Kyaung
Bagaya Kyaung carved trolley, Myanmar.
Bagaya Kyaung cask
Bagaya Kyaung view inside, Myanmar.
Bagaya Kyaung inside
A small stupa in the trees at Bagaya Kyaung - Inwa, Myanmar.
Bagaya Kyaung stupa
The Teak Monastery at Inwa, Myanmar.
Bagaya Kyaung
View of the interior of Bagaya Kyaung, Inla, Myanmar.
Bagaya Kyaung inside
Bagaya Kyaung (The teak Monastery) at Inwa, Myanmar.
Bagaya Kyaung
The monastery is magnificent - the very heavy sold doors, pillars and windows being beautifully carved with peacocks, lotus flowers and mythical beasts. The inside is dark and cool and scattered around there are Buddha images and for some reason lots of old wooden casks. The Bagaya Kyaung is older than other major buildings in Inwa and dates from 1593 and once formed the southern corner of the Royal Complex. There are also several other small stupas within the immediate area and really good views of the surrounding countryside. A newer and active monastery also sits within the grounds.

Maha Aungmye Bonzan (Me Nu Oak Kyaung) Monastery, Inway - Myanmar.

This another popular site which is also visited by the horse and cart trips - there are cafes and souvenir stalls along the road just outside the main gate. The Combo Ticket needs to be available for this.
Horse carts waiting at Maha Aung Myi Bonzan Monastery, Myanmar.
Maha Aung Myi Bonzan Monastery
Maha Aung Myi Bonzan Monastery entrance, Myanmar.
Maha Aung Myi Bonzan Monastery
Maha Aung Myi Bonzan Monastery at Inwa, Myanmar.
Maha Aung Myi Bonzan Monastery
Maha Aung Myi Bonzan Monastery, Myanmar.
Maha Aung Myi Bonzan Monastery
Thick walled corridors at the Maha Aung Myi Bonzan Monastery, Myanmar.
Maha Aung Myi Bonzan Monastery
Wildlife - almost - at Maha Aung Myi Bonzan Monastery cow, Myanmar.
Maha Aung Myi Bonzan Monastery
View of Maha Aung Myi Bonzan Monastery in Inwa, Myanmar.
Maha Aung Myi Bonzan Monastery
Maha Aung Myi Bonzan Monastery ruins, Myanmar.
Maha Aung Myi Bonzan Monastery
Maha Aung Myi Bonzan Monastery outbuildings, Myanmar.
Maha Aung Myi Bonzan Monastery
Monks accommodation at Maha Aung Myi Bonzan Monastery, Myanmar.
Maha Aung Myi Bonzan Monastery
Maha Aung Myi Bonzan Monastery monks house at Inwa, Myanmar.
Maha Aung Myi Bonzan Monastery
Horse and carts waiting for their tourists at Inwa, Myanmar.
Horse and carts
This huge monastery is quite an impressive site - it was built in 1822 by Nanmudaw-Me-Nu who was King Bagyidaw's main Queen and she had this constructed for the Royal Abbott. It is built of brick and covered in stuccos. It really is solid looking with steps leading to terraces - inside the walls are really thick and their are lots of corridors. The surrounding grounds contain a variety of buildings of interest including semi-derelict monks dwellings and other structures much of which are half covered in foliage.
Gold tipped stupas at Htilhingshin Paya in Myanmar.
Htilhingshin Paya
The Htilhingshin Pagoda, Inwa, Myanmar.
Htilhingshin Payas
Htilhingshin Pagoda - Inwa, Mandalay, Myanmar.
Htilhingshin Payas
Several small pagodas at Htilhingshin Payas, Inwa, Myanmar.
Htilhingshin Payas
Farmers and their horse and carts at Inwa, Myanmar. A small white Pagoda near Htilhingshin Payas, Myanmar. Htilhingshin Payas, Myanmar.Near the monastery there are more stupas and pagodas including the Htilhingshin Pagoda - some of these date back to the Bagan period. There are good views of the countryside and also a nice white stupa on it's own in a field as well as farm buildings.

Nanmyin watchtower, Inwa, Myanmar. The Leaning Tower of Inwa - Myanmar.

The Nanmyin Tower (Watchtower) at Inwa - Myanmar.

The tower is located quite close to the Maha Aungmye Bonzan. This 90 feet high brick building tower is known as the leaning tower of Inwa and is just about all that remains of the formal royal complex of King Bagyidaw. The tower was destroyed in the 1939 earthquake but has since been renovated - but sadly does not look as if any maintenance is now carried out. There is a metal step way which winds it's way nearly to the top of the tower however it is in poor condition and the entrance gate to it is locked. Just as well as it is obvious that the walkway circling the tower near the top has much of it's wooden flooring missing.
Our other items about Mandalay and surrounding area.
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