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One of the most incredible places to visit in Myanmar is Kyaiktiyo Pagoda located in Kyaiktiyo, Myanmar. Also known as the Golden Rock, it's an iconic gold rock, dangling off the side of a mountain. Not only is it a famous tourist attraction but most importantly, it holds a high level of importance and symbolism for Buddhists as its an important pilgrimage site for them. It's what makes this attraction such a unique and striking place to visit for so many people from around the world.

The History of Kyaiktiyo Pagoda (The Golden Rock)

Kyaiktiyo Pagoda is one of the world's most important pilgrim sites to Buddhists and the second most important in all of Myanmar. It's known around the world and people flock there from far and wide to experience it in person. The Golden Rock that's placed on the edge of a hill is of great importance. It looks like it's defying gravity and a legend says that the rock is able to stay balanced because it's being held by a hair from Buddha. This link to Buddha is the reason why so many people make the trip here each year. But regardless of your faith or religion, it's an astonishing place that'll truly take your breath away.

It's said that the rock has been positioned here for more than 2500 years. It's been entirely gilded with gold, making it all the more impressive. Buddhists believe that the power of the relic that's enshrined in the Pagoda, relating to the origin story of the Buddha's hair is what keeps it in place.

The magnificent Golden Rock on the edge of the hill with scenic views of Kyaiktiyo
An image of the magnificent Golden Rock on the edge of the hill with scenic views of Kyaiktiyo

Why Visit The Kyaiktiyo Pagoda

Kyaiktiyo Pagoda is a stunning place and there are lots of reasons why you might want to visit it and why it's one of the favourite places for so many people around the world.

It's Not a Tourist Hub

Although it attracts many people from around the world, Kyaiktiyo Pagoda isn't a tourist hub. Many people who visit are Buddhists who are making pilgrimages rather than tourists. This can make the experience more enjoyable because we all know the tourist frenzy you find at many locations like this can diminish them a little but you won't need to worry about that.

Natural Landscapes and Magnificent Hikes

Starting at the bottom in Kinpun, you'll have a chance to hike all the way to the top of Mount Kyaiktiyo where you'll find the Golden Rock. Although you can head to the top by bus but walking and taking the scenic route is so much better and feels more rewarding in the end. It's tiring as the hike it a couple of hours long, but the sights you'll get to witness across the natural landscape are incredible and definitely worth it!

Breath-Taking Views of The Golden Rock When you finally reach the Golden Rock, seeing it in front of you is quite something. It's one of those things that you'll probably never forget. The size of the Golden Rock never fails to surprise those seeing it for the first time. Whether you visit it during the day or at night, you'll usually find a few tourists but mainly pilgrims or those coming to meditate.

Kyaiktiyo Pagoda (The Golden Rock) captured at night
Image of the stunning Kyaiktiyo Pagoda (The Golden Rock) captured at night, showcasing meditation and offerings to the Buddha

It Carries Huge Symbolism

Whether it means anything to you or not, there's something special about visiting a place like this that carries such huge symbolism for so many people from all over the world. It's what makes the experience so great and definitely worth being a part of.

Facts About Kyaiktiyo Pagoda

The Golden Rock weighs a total of 611.5 tons and is made of Granite. It also stands 3625 feet above sea level, and the Pagoda itself is 25 feet high by 50 feet wide. The Kyaiktiyo Pagoda has been in that position in Mon State, Burma for as long as the records in this part of the world go back.

If you don't share the same beliefs as the Buddhists, you're probably wondering what's actually keeping the rock in its precarious position? Well, geologists believe that the phenomenon was caused by a volcanic accident a long time ago, which is still an interesting fact nonetheless.

Burma's South region is one of the most picturesque regions of the country and due to governments permission no longer being required to visit since 2013, it still remains untouched by mass tourism. Major attractions such as The Golden Rock aren't included in our Burma River Cruises or the Irrawaddy River Cruises. However, as we believe that this attraction along with several others is definitely worth a visit, we offer all our Pandaw customers the option to book an extension with their river cruises to discover Burma's undiscovered south region. This programme will introduce you to all the major attractions of the area including, but not limited to the Golden Rock, Hpa-an caves and colonial Moulmein.

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