Inle Lake: Shwei Indein PagodaMarch 13, 2020 in Myanmar ⋅ 🌙 77 °F
We arrived to Shwei Indein Pagoda In our private long boat, via twisting canals.
Upon disembarking, We discover a hillside complex containing over 1,600 Buddhist stupas, some of mud and stone, some intricately carved, some gilded with precious metals. While several have been restored, many have been reclaimed by the surrounding jungle and lay partially crumbled, covered in vines or ingrown trees.
These structures date from the 14th to the 18th centuries. Like others found across the region, the stupas have carved creatures like lion-like beings that protect sacred spaces. These were (and remain) sites for contemplation and meditation and many contain relics inside their bases.
The first stupas at Indein were likely commissioned during the reign of King Narapatisithu, although according to legend, it was King Ashoka - the Indian emperor responsible for spreading Buddhism across much of Asia - who first designated this as a site of spiritual importance. Hundreds of years later, that distinction is completely obvious. The sea of ornate spires coupled with the view over the lake and surrounding calm lend this spot an unquestionably mystic, reflective air.Read more