PHOTO: Shwenandaw Monastery in Mandalay, Myanmar

Interior of Shwenandaw Monastery Palace in Mandalay, Myanmar is covered in real gold foil

Interior of Shwenandaw Monastery, also known as Golden Palace Monastery, in Mandalay, Myanmar. The structure was originally part of the royal palace at Amarapura, before it was moved to Mandalay, where it became part of the king’s royal apartments. Both the exterior and the interior were once heavily gilded. Although the interior is still covered with gilt, most of the gold has worn off the exterior surfaces. The outside, however, is impressive in its own regard, as its roof and walls are covered in teak carvings of Buddhist myths. Today, Shwenandaw Monastery is the only remaining original structure of the Burmese Royal Palace. This was just one of many magical sights seen during my Myanmar Explorer Cruise/Tour with Viking River Cruises.

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