Visiting Shwe Yan Pyay Monastery in Myanmar.
The small Shwe Yan Pyay Monastery is situated around 1.5 miles north of Nyaung Shwe along the road towards Heho Airport and makes for a really enjoyable bike ride.
Cycle hire is readily available in Nyaung Shwe at most guest houses and hotels plus many shops have them too.
The bike ride takes you out of town past the Ticket Booth so it is worth making sure you have your area ticket with you in case they want to check it on the way back into town.
Having passed the booth the road becomes a sort of dual-carriageway but it really is fine for cycling - there is not a lot of traffic and anyway the drivers do not go quickly and respect cyclists in the main. The road is completely lined with trees so nice and shaded and there is plenty of room on the verges to stop to take photos and admire the
views. A lake is one side of the road and paddy fields stretching away into the distance on the other. It is always interesting to watch local farmers working in the fields planting and picking rice so all very picturesque - actually coaches stop along the way so that their passengers can take photos. In amongst the fields there are small stupas dotted around
as well as a variety of thatched houses and barns. Shwe Yan Pyay Monastery is easily spotted - it is on the left hand side of the road just before a sharp left-hand bend.[ Clicking the thumbnails will open a much larger picture - use the back button to return to this page. ]
Shwe Yan Pyay Monastery itself.
Built in the early 1900s the monastery is actively used however it's fine to walk around - but of course necessary to remove your footwear if entering any of the buildings. The Monastery is contained with a fairly high-walled complex and most of the buildings are made from teak. The Ordination Hall (which is called a Thein) has what are fairly unusual oval windows. The interior is cool and quite dark and supported by heavily carved pillars. There are several Buddha statues and also side rooms where the monks teach
deprived children. There are other buildings in the complex which you can look into including the Monastery kitchen and dining area as well as several monks accommodation blocks (which are round the back of the Hall)..
On one side of the complex there is a large barrel roofed Pagoda which has a fine golden stupa. This Pagoda is very unusual because inside there are four corridors and on the walls there are a multitude of small niches. Each niche contains a small sitting Buddha - each has a plaque underneath which names each donor and the amount that they donated. Making a donation to the monastery in this way is considered very beneficial to the donor's life - donations appear to have come from all over the world.
The corridors are very brightly coloured - mostly orangey-red - and at the end of each section are one or more larger Buddha statues - each in different poses.
Having looked round the Monastery then of course you can continue cycling further along the road. However there is not any site of interest to look round and after a while the countryside and views are nowhere as good as on the Nyaung Shwe stretch - though another mile or two cycling along is of course a quite pleasant thing to do.
Our other items about Inle Lake and Nyaung Shwe - including a couple nice bike rides.
- Inle Lake and Nyaung Shwe travel and visitor guide - Myanmar
- Nyaung Shwe and Inle Lake in Myanmar touring guide - travelling there (Heho), things to do, bike rides, Inle Lake boat trips.
- Nyaung Shwe, Maing Yhauk, Inle Lake, Kaung Daing circular bike ride
- Bike Ride from Nyaung Shwe Myanmar going via Maing Yhauk, Inle Lake, Kaung Daing seeing stilt houses and floating gardens.
- Local bike ride around the Nyaung Shwe countryside in Myanmar
- Cycling from Nyaung Shwe looking at a couple of Pagodas and Monasteries, villages and out in the lovely Burmese countryside.
- Inle Lake in Myanmar on a longtail boat trip
- Inle Lake long-tail boat ride looking at Pagodas (Phaung Daw Oo Paya, Nga Hpe Kyaung), Stilt-houses, floating farms.
- Myanmar travel, touring and sightseeing guides and photos
- Our above Home Page shows all of our items about Myanmar covering Yangon, Mandalay and Bagan.
Other destinations in the Far East which are reasonably easy to reach from Myanmar and for which we have travel and touring guides are Cambodia, Laos, China, Thailand and Vietnam - please see our above Home Page for these or visit our Resources Page