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Phowintaung Cave Pagodas

Phowintaung Cave Pagodas 

Phowintaung Cave Pagodas Day Tour

Phowintaung Cave Pagoda Day Tour
This are some of the most unique Buddhist shrines in the country. The Powintaung Pagodas are not far from  Monywa and the Alaungdaw Kathapa National Park  a ideal day trip or longer when visiting Mandalay.

The Chindwin River valley region has many highlights, among them are the great town of Monywa on the eastern bank and the ancient pagodas on the other side.

The term "Powin" probably has evolved from a term meaning "the powerful state of an ascetic's mind" and "Taung" means hills. Legends tell that people seeking supernatural power have been meditating there.
Powintaung Cave Pagodas one entrance

There are almost 800 caves in that area, most were naturally formed and hollowed out and enlarged. This is some soft limestone as almost everywhere in SEA.

Phowintaung Cave Pagodas
Phowintaung Cave Pagodas Photos
  1. Yangon Airport Departure
  2. Yangon International Airport in 2017
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The earliest inscription was found on the earlobe of a reclining Buddha from 1549 but many inscription were deleted over time being consider "Graffiti" not suitable in pagodas and temples.

Anyway many caves are covered will wall art which are mainly murals with different themes mostly related to Buddhas life called "Jakata Stories". Paintings are mostly from the 17th. Century and show Shan style elements. Around the entrances are flame designs from the Bagan area. Some monkey families occupy the place and woods around.


The largest tributary to the legendary Irrawaddy River is the Chindwin Waterway which is flowing quite close by and the proximity to Alaungdaw Kathapa National Park makes it an ideal day trip.

Pilgrims come to attend the annual festival in October or November, the rest of the year it's quite empty.
Phowintaung Cave Pagoda interior
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How to travel to the Phowintaung Cave Pagodas?

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Take a train aircraft or bus from Yangon to Mandalay and ask in the hotel they usually know a experienced person who normally also has a car who will be the tourguide. Try to combine the 3 destinations together which means Yangon Mandalay / Sagaing first and after Monywa Phowintaung Cave Pagodas and Alaungdaw Kathapa National Park. There are incredible travel sight and sounds.

The picture above shows the interior of one of the 800 caves with sitting Buddha Statues and walls murals similar to the Bagan temples.
Yangon international airport duty free