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Kyaikhtiyo Pagoda

Kyaikhtiyo Pagoda

Kyaikhtiyo Pagoda (also known as Golden Rock) is a well-known Buddhist pilgrimage site in Mon State, Burma. It is a small pagoda (7.3 metres (24 ft)) built on the top of a granite boulder covered with gold leaves pasted on by devotees. According to legend, the Golden Rock itself is precariously perched on a strand of the Buddha's hair. The balancing rock seems to defy gravity, as it perpetually appears to be on the verge of rolling down the hill. The rock and the pagoda are at the top of Mt. Kyaiktiyo. It is the third most important Buddhist pilgrimage site in Burma after the Shwedagon Pagoda and the Mahamuni Pagoda. A glimpse of the "gravity defying" Golden Rock is believed to be enough of an inspiration for any person to turn to Buddhism.
Kyaikhtiyo Pagoda Overview
Kyaiktiyo Pagoda, also known as Golden Rock) is a well-known Buddhist pilgrimage site in Mon State, Burma. It is a small pagoda (7.3 metres (24 ft)) built on the top of a granite boulder covered with gold leaves pasted on by its male devotees.
 
According to legend, the Golden Rock itself is precariously perched on a strand of the Buddha's hair. The balancing rock seems to defy gravity, as it perpetually appears to be on the verge of rolling down the hill. The rock and the pagoda are at the top of Mt. Kyaiktiyo. Another legend states that a Buddhist priest impressed the celestial king with his asceticism and the celestial king used his supernatural powers to carry the rock to its current place, specifically choosing the rock as the resemblance to the monks head. It is the third most important Buddhist pilgrimage site in Burma after the Shwedagon Pagoda and the Mahamuni Pagoda.
 
Currently, women are not allowed into the inner sanctuary of the rocks vicinity, maintained by an employed security guard who watches over the gated entrance. Women are permitted in the outer balcony and the lower courtyard of the rock.
Kyaikhtiyo Pagoda History
It is said that the boulder has been over 2500 years. The tradition is that after the hermit had obtained the hair from the Buddha, he was carrying it on his head inside his hair knot till he found a boulder which resembled his head, and so he built the pagoda on its enshrining the relic, substituting the boulder for his over head.
 
On the extreme verge of this sloping rock table, and actually over hanging it by nearly half, is perched this wonderful boulder (now completely gilded with gold), thirty feet high and surrounded by the pagoda. By gently rocking the boulder a thread can be passed underneath; seemingly appears as if the additional weight of a few pounds, or a strong wind, would send it sliding down from the place it has occupied for unknown centuries watching over three thousand feet into the sloping valley beneath and we know what freakish law keeps it in its position. Anyway pious Buddhists attribute it to the power of the relic enshrined in the pagoda.
 
This relic is a hair of Gotama Buddha given to a hermit residing on the mountain by the Buddha himself as he was returning from the second heaven of the Nats whither he had gone to preach the law to his mother.
Golden Rock Climate and best time to see
The weather is warm all year round. Average temperatures go from 30 ° (november) to 38 ° (may). The rainiest months are: september, october and november. We recommende the month of january, february, march, to visit Golden Rock.
Golden Rock Transportation
From Mawlamyine and Hpa An – There are daily buses that stop at the nearby town of Kyaik Hto.
From Inle Lake and Kalaw – As there are no direct buses, the most convenient way to do this journey is via Yangon. However, if you wish to take a more direct route, you can either take the bus to Nay Pyi Taw, and from there take another bus on to Mawlamyine (which stops Kyaik Hto), or you can go via Bago.
From Bago – Buses depart in the afternoon (transfer sometimes required), and the journey takes around two hours.
Things to do and see in Golden Rock
KYAIKPAWLAW HMESHINDAW
Located in Kyaikhto, Kantkaw Township in Mon State. Kyaikpawlaw Buddha Image is well-known because of the living mole on the face of the Buddha image. While visiting Kyaikhtiyo, one can also plan to visit this astonishing image. It is more convenient to go to Kyaikpawlaw Hmeshindaw Pagoda after visiting Kyaikhtiyoe. "Hmeshin" means living mole. The pagoda is said to possess great influence because the image enshrined in it has a mole on its face. Every year, there is a festival held in the name of this Buddha image. Locals from all parts of the country visit the mysterious image with the moving mole.
MAHA MUNI THUN PAYA
Kyaikpawlaw Image in Gangaw Ward, Kyaikhto, Mon State.
In 1255 (Sakarit year), pious couple U Ant and Daw Goon paid obeisance to Maha Myat Muni in Mandalay and had an urge to pay obeisance to its replica in Kyaikhtiyo, and so they sought the permission of King Thipaw's elder sister to get a cast of the Image in 1256. They got a cast of the Image from the full moon day of Tazaungmone that year up to the full moon day of Tabaung the same year. After that they cast the Image with over 3000 viss of alloy of gold, silver, bronze and mogyo donated by one and all.
Its throne is four cubits high, and the height of the image itself is over seven cubits.

Golden Rock Travel Tips
Currently, as of December 2017, foreign tourist must pay an entrance fee of 10,000 Kyat. Be warned, that you also have to take your shoes off and walk a good stretch barefoot. The fact that your feet will get dirty from the ground is inevitable when travelling in Myanmar. After some time, you get use to it so don’t worry. We would recommend to allocate at least two hours to reach the site.
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