- Place or Religious Monument
There is a chargeto enter the site, but it's largely worth it. This is an excursion on which you will be offered the chance to travel in an ox-drawn cart, or people will try to sell you local arts and crafts items.
But get away from all this and head off on your own to explore Mingun's magnificent pagoda.. You first see it from a distance, in it's green setting. Then its size starts to become more apparent as you approach closer. Its whiteness is dazzling. I enjoyed losing myself in its various passages and delighted in the sounds of its little bells.
I didn't forget to slip beneath the famous Mingun bell and read all the graffiti added there over the years. Nor did I forget to satisfy my curiosity by wandering around the sanatorium, which has been converted into a retirement home.
The advantage of Mingun is its geographical location. Consequently, Mingun is a great half-day out, if you're in the Mandalay region. You can include Ava, Sagaing and Monywa in the same excursion.
Ox-driven taxis sit on the banks so that, after your cruise along the Irrawaddy, you can hire one to give you the complete tour.
The unfinished pagoda is currently 50m high, which is about a third of its planned height. Had it been finished, it would have been the tallest in the world. Today it resembles a gigantic block of stone.
The Hsinbyume is more beautiful. You can climb up its seven terraces to get a fantastic view of its surrounds.