Kanbawzathadi Golden Palace, Bago, Myanmar

Visiting Kanbawzathadi Golden Palace in Bago was a nice break from the pagodas and buddha statues. Golden Palace is a small building with two majestic halls, a chamber hosting king’s throne and some display of relevant information. It is in fact the only decent place worth visiting if Pagodas and Buddha statues, temples are not your thing.
Golden palace is about 2.5 kms from Bago station, closer to Swemawdaw Pagoda. Foreign tourists visiting the golden Palace need to buy a 10000 MMK (INR 500, USD 8) Bago municipality ticket which covers access to 4 different attractions in Bago.
Kanbawzathadi Golden Palace complex has two buildings.

The main one is Kanbawzathadi Golden Palace or simply golden palace of Bago. It was originally built in 16th century but was eventually destroyed in fire and war. What we see today is a replica constructed recently (1990s) based on original design bits available. The original palace is said to have 76 rooms. The current golden palace building has 3 major sections- two mega halls, known as Great Audience Hall where King received his visitors or staff- which once had wooden pillars and a chamber housing royal throne. The halls are majestic, with huge pillars, intrinsic art work on the roof, on the pillars on the side everywhere. Some historical information about the Burmese kings who ruled the palace and artefacts belonging to them is also kept on display inside.
 Above- the grandeur of the interiors and a photo showcasing earlier wooden pillars. Few of those original wooden pillars (or parts there of) were kept nearby. Each pillar is said to have name of the village which donated the tree for palace. A total of 160+ pillars were used in the palace.

Below: Royal throne and the steps from behind to access the throne.
It was a cloudy day with occasional rains. I wished I had my Nikon with me for a more crisp photograph. (Managing most of my trips with Honor 6X these days, as it is a lot convenient and serves the purpose of capturing some decent pictures, but at times regret not having Nikon)

Burmese royal dresses:
 Doors and roof
The room housing the royal throne also has all the grandeur expected in a rich royal palace. There is a walk way behind the throne, we could circle around it. It took me about 30 minutes to walk around the golden palace and exit. As I left more tour buses came in bringing hundreds of tourists. The 16th century Taungoo dynasty was very prosperous in its time and their kingdom was very large- including current day Myanmar, Thailand and a bit of China. King Bayinnaung was said to be one of the powerful kings of his time- he build present day Bago as a new capital for his kingdom and commissioned building of his palace here.
 Detailed history

The second building in the complex is known as Bee throne hall. This hall is the royal residence- has bed room and living room used by King and his family

This bee throne hall has a 7 layered roof known as Pyatthat, representing Burmese style architecture. This building is also full of gold coloured design and artefacts.

 

Overall, the golden palace in Bago is worth a visit because it is a respite from Pagodas and Buddha statues and is fairly photogenic along with its historic importance. The golden palace campus is also very photogenic- good for some nice clicks for your Myanmar trip memory.

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