- Place or Religious Monument
- Place or Historical Monument
Sagaing Hill, in my opinion, is an interesting place to see when visiting the north of Burma. Not particularly a fan of Mandalay, I enjoyed being able to get out of the city to visit one of the region's major historic and religious sites.
The panoramic views out over the region from the top of the hill are magnificent, with the Irrawaddy River and all the countless temples, pagodas and monasteries to admire as far as the eye can see. I remember being impressed by all the golden stupas that decorate the landscape, acting as a reminder of the extent to which the culture of Burma is deeply marked by spirituality. At the top of the hill are some impressive Buddhas that you cannot possibly fail to admire.
Regrettably, the site is not well maintained and creates the impression that it is without doubt destined to become a tourist trap.
Sagaing is a great day out if you're planning to explore the area around Mandalay. You can also do Inwa and Ubein at the same time. It's the typical tourist trail, so to speak. The aim is to not visit the sites at same time as all the other tourists. To do so, the best way is to go by motorbike with a guide in tow.
The hill at Sagaing is pretty and the view from the top a great photo opportunity. What struck me most was the number of golden stupas that sit on top of each hill. The stupas are linked by stairs and stone paths, all surrounded by lush vegetation. It's a colourful sight! From green to gold, white to blue...alongside monks marching up the steep steps, dressed in red robes.
It's the atmosphere that's remarkable - a sense of calm, which is paradoxical considering the number of visitors that arrive by the coach-load... Even so, it's tranquil and spiritual. It's a superb place to visit during a holiday in Burma.