Ava’s Royal and Cultural Landmarks
Ava’s Royal and
Worlds apart from the hustle and bustle of Mandalay, yet a stone’s throw away from Myanmar’s
second-largest city, Ava ticks off all the boxes of a full inundation in authenticity,
royal palaces, and a scent of how handicraft still plays an important role.
WHY THIS TOUR?
Ava is located nearby Amarapura and was once the seat of kings, but now the best craftsmen of Myanmar work there embroidering tapestries, casting bronze, carving teak, or weaving silk. Located just across the Myintge River, Ava was another capital city, of which little remains but a handful of well-preserved monasteries and a few segments of the old city walls peeking out from the tree roots and cultivated fields that have taken over the area.
When history is of interest and Mandalay your port of call, Ava will satisfy your thirst for exploration.
18:00 - 20:30
Your guide and driver will be waiting for you in your Mandalay hotel for a 20-kilometre drive to Ava (a decent 45 minutes’ drive). This 4-hour sightseeing tour is operated both in the morning and in the afternoon.
Going from here to the former Royal Capital at Ava (Inwa), we include a short ferry trip, where further exploration by horse-cart offers the opportunity to discover the picturesque ruins and surrounding countryside at a relaxed and more tranquil pace. Sightseeing will include the teak monastery of Bagaya Kyaung (famous for its impressive ornate woodcarvings and teak posts) and the former royal monastery temple known as Maha Aungmye Bonzan, built completely of brick and stucco. The impressive Maha Aungmye Bonzan Monastery is one of Ava’s landmarks within its town borders. Commonly known as the Me Nu Brick Monastery and constructed in the 19th century, the historical importance and its well-kept structure will certainly leave visitors in awe.
The Nan Myint Watch Tower has been aptly nicknamed ‘The Leaning Tower of Ava’. It is one of the few remaining parts of the former palace grounds while entrance to the top is unfortunately not permitted it has taken its place as an important historical landmark. Preservation work continues to see this old palace building remain as a testimony to what was once seen as the centre of the country.
On your way back to Mandalay, we, of course, cannot skip making a stop in Amarapura to see the iconic U Bein teak bridge, built in 1782 when Amarapura was Royal Capital. Spanning the Taungthaman Lake, this 1.2-kilometre long bridge is the longest teak footbridge in the world. It is often busy with locals ‘commuting’ back and forth, which makes for an attractive photo opportunity.
Time to leave this charming side of Myanmar behind is not easy, yet the drive back to Mandalay will commence shortly after leaving Amarapura behind and head towards the lobby of your booked accommodation