Mandalay

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Mandalay was the last royal capital of the third Myanmar Empire founded in 1857. The city of Mandalay took its name from the “Mandalay Hill” which is situated to the north-east of the town. The classical name of the city is Ratanapura, which is commonly shortened to Ratnapun (pronounced Yadanabon). Mandalay, which is roughly 66 square kilometers in area, and with a population of 880,000 is second only to Yangon in size and importance and about 622 kilometers due north of Yangon. It is located on the east bank of the Ayeyarwaddy River in the central part of the country. Mandalay is the best place to see handicrafts such as wood, marble, ivory and stone carvings and gold and silver crafts, hand-woven silk and tapestries. Interesting places to visit are The Royal Palace, Mandalay Hill, handicraft workshops, the Golden Palace monastery, Mahamuni Image and meditation centers. Mandalay still has cultural and religious significance and its Buddhist monasteries are among the most important in the country- about 60% of all the monks in Myanmar reside in the Mandalay area.

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