Mandalay is a busy metropolis which used to be the last or the 9th royal city of Myanmar Kings in its history . Named after Mandalay Hill which also derived from the Pali term MANDALA, a palace site of Universal King called Indra, located on top of mount MERU, among 4 islands surrounded by 7 oceans and 7 mountain-ranges due to what ancient imaginary cosmology said. By Rudyard Kipling’s poem, Road to Mandalay, inspired visitors for centuries.
The “world’s largest book” and the restored Mandalay Palace from the last Dynasty, surrounded by a moat are 3 out of 8 typical features or 8-twins since the city is officially born in 1858 A.D and entirely colonized in 1885 by the British. With an international airport, it is reachable by both air and river, as well as by road and rail.Thaungthaman Lake (over which the iconic U Bein Bridge stretched, made of teak pillars from Ava’s old royal palace) in Amarapura ancient city is magical, and Sagaing on the west ofthe river, opposite Mandalay used to be short-live royal cities in easy reach. Mingun which is well known as a place of world second largest ringing Bell located on the north west of Mandalay on the west bank of Ayarwady . Pyin Oo Lwin (formerly MAY city) as colonial hill station/summer resort and a 200km drive north from the city of Mandalay called Mogok are reputed for cooler weather, botanical garden of the former and ruby mines of the latter.
Now Mandalay is the second most populated city in the country and the top commercial hub for Upper Myanmar.