Myanmar Travel

Kyaikhtiyo - Mawlamyine -

Mon State

Mon state is on the south-east of Yangon and one of the biggest state. Mainly mon people live and also some other tribes. According to historical background, Mon people are Buddhist since before Bagan period. Mon state is in hot wet region, gets annual rainfall about 200 inches. The average annual temperature is 80F. The chief crops in area are rice, rubber, sugar cane, betel nuts, peppers and coconuts. Mon State is also noted for its delicious fruits like durians, mangosteens, pomelos, rambutans. Myanmar travel!

Kyaikhtiyo (Golden Rock)

The most famous pagoda in Mon State. “Kyaikhtiyo”derived from Mon language means a pagoda shouldered on the head of a hermit. It’s built on a huge boulder which balances precariously on a projecting tabular rock. The rock itself is separated from the mountain by a deep chasm which is spanned by an iron bridge. Legend has it that two hermits lived in these mountain and they had received two hair relics of Buddha and desired to enshrine these relics on the rock which looks like his head. Mountaineering about an hour to arrive there is fun. Myanmar travel!


Mawlamyine is the capital of Mon State situated 165 kilometers from Yangon. It takes about Mon State has an area of 16735 square miles with ten townships and about 400 villages. 6 hours drive from Yangon. Population in the city is almost 300,000. The majority of the people are Mons and there are also Karens, Shans. During colonial time known as Moulmein and the administrative capital of British Lower Burma.
Mawlamyine does have a charm of its own with its rich history, buildings with colonial style architecture, World War II era wooden buses, and its close proximity to the infamous Siam-Burma "death railway", making it a fascinating place to visit ! With its colonial buildings, wooden chevrolet buses and its leafy tropical coastal setting, Mawlamyine has a charm of its own distinct from any other town or city in Myanmar.
There are also places of historical interest in and around Mawlmayine. Thanbyuzayat, 60 km south is the end of the line for the infamous Burma-Siam death railway where 100,000 people died in its construction during World War II under the Japanese occupation. Kyaikthanlan pagoda on the eastern ridge of town is thought to be the setting where Rudyard Kipling wrote his famous poem, 'The Road to Mandalay'. Win Sein Taw Ya, 30 km south on the outskirts of Mudon is the site of the largest reclining Buddha image in the world. Myanmar travel!

Kyaik Than Lan Pagoda

Kyaikthanlan pagoda was built in 875 AD and enshrines the Tripitaka Buddhist manuscripts as well as a hair relic from the Buddha. This pagoda is the highest one in Mawlamyine and stands 150 feet tall on the ridge overlooking the town centre. It can be seen for miles especially at night where its lighted brilliance dominates the skyline. From the top of the pagoda grounds, an excellent 360 degree panoramic view of the whole of the city can be seen. From this vantage point, Mawlamyine's British built prison strikes you immediately as you look westwards towards the Thanlwin river and the Gulf of Mottoma. It is thought to be the site where Rudyard Kipling wrote his famous poem, Mandalay. Incidently, the Mandalay ward of Mawlamyine is located just north of the Kyaikthanlan pagoda so this may have been his inspiration for writing the poem "Mandalay". Myanmar travel!

Gaung Se Kyun

First two words Gaung Se means 'head medicine' or shampoo in and 'kyun' means island thus giving rise to its English name of Shampoo Island. It has been given this name from the Ava period when water from a spring on this island was used in the annual royal hair washing ceremony. The island also has a Buddhist meditation centre although these days, with the Thanlwin bridge being built just 50 meters abeam the island, meditation on the island is far more challenging than what it used to be, with vehicle traffic and railway line being literally only a stone's throw away. Sandawshin Pagoda is also located on the island. To get to Gaung Se Kyun, hire a long tail boat from the banks of the Thanlwin river immediately opposite the island. Myanmar travel!

Zay Gyi

Zay Gyi is the town's main shopping centre and is not to be confused with Zeigyo, which is 7 km away near the highway bus station on the way to Mudon. This is a 'dry market' where items for sale include domestic household goods such as clothes, longyi, soaps and detergents, pots and pans, biscuits, cigarettes, medicines etc.

Mon Culture Museum

Mon Cultural Museum is located on the corner of Baho St and Dawei Jetty Rd. There are no English signs but the Museum is easy enough to find. Look for this large signboard in red at the front of the museum building. There you can see the various kinds of traditional art and craft things. Historic evidences from different eras.

Kyauktalon Taung

Kyauktalon Taung is an interesting flat rock formation 300 feet in height with a Buddhist shrine situated on top. Although reminding you of Mt Popa in central Myanmar, the outcrop is geologically different being made of limestone rather than volcanic rock.

Yadana Taung

Yadana Taung is just opposite of Kyauktalon Taung and the entrance to a Hindu temple where literally hundreds of monkeys. A hundred metres further south is the entrance to Win Sein Taw Ya.

Win Sein Taw Ya

Win Sein Taw Ya, is the place of the largest reclining Buddha image in the world , situated about 20 km south of Mawlamyine on the main road to Mudon. It can be clearly seen for miles as you leave Mudon for Mawlamyine on the right side of the road. The reclining Buddha has 180 meters in length, and 30 meters in height. Inside there are numerous rooms with dioramas of the teachings of Buddhism. Myanmar travel!


Hpa-an, is the administrative capital of Kayin State and about 400 kilometres (250 miles) southeast of Yangon. It is a small town with busy market. The major tribes living here is Kayin and Mon, and most of them are Buddhists. Christians are just a minority. Myanmar travel!


The glorious Zwegabin Hill is an attractive place for visitors and Kawtgon Cave is also a place of interest. Mt.Zwegabin in the state of Kayin MOUNTAIN ZWEKABIN one evidences 800 meters over plains and e' one stone for the Kayin people who live in these plains. An ascension hundred of the irregular points to the monasteroche that situated on the peak, them ricompensera' with one seen exceptional. Myanmar travel!

Saddan Cave & Bayin Nyi Cave

Bayin Nyi Cave is closer to Thaton and makes an ideal stop on the way to Yangon. This is another steep Rock in the plains with a monastery at the foot of the mountain. There is a hot spring with bathing possibility. Thandaung Hill Resort is a small resort town located in Kayin State, Myanmar. The majority of its population is Karen. It was developed as a hill resort by the British. Thandaung was also built-up as a hill resort from Victorian times by the British. It happens to be the hill resort closest to Yangon as it is only about 200 miles away and can be reached by car or bus on a half day's journey. If visitors prefer using the railway, they can ride the train from Yangon to Taungoo in about six hours and from Taungoo to Thandaung it is only 27 miles up by car passing through lush virgin forests, see cascading mountain streams and climb gradually to over 4,000 feet, to reach Thandaung. Myanmar travel!