From palaces to pagodas, wooden bridges to stunning waterfalls, Mandalay is a must-see city while travelling through magical Myanmar, especially when experienced from the comfort of a unique boutique or surprisingly luxurious hotel or from the from the balcony of your boat cabin as you take a luxury Mandalay river cruise.
Stay at Secret Retreats’ Boutique Hotels in Mandalay MyanmarWhether you’re passing through or staying a few days in one of Secret Retreats’ boutique hotels in Mandalay, countless traditional pagodas and temples ensure you’ll be able to fill your time in the city. With the best hotel in Mandalay as your base, visit the country’s revered Mahamuni Paya to see its celebrated 4-metre-high Buddha that has been slowly reshaped by centuries of gold leaf applied by worshippers. Glimpse the intricate carvings inside the striking Shwenandaw Monastery. Made entirely out of teakwood, it is the only surviving building from the original wooden royal palace and was residence to the last two kings of Burma.
Take in the sweeping views over Mandalay and wander around the numerous pagodas and temples on the city’s namesake, Mandalay Hill, including the Kuthodaw Pagoda which is home to the world’s largest book made from 729 carved marble slabs, each housed in its own stupa. Snap stunning pictures while meandering across what is believed to be the oldest and longest teakwood bridge in the world, stretching 1.2 kilometres over the Taungthaman Lake. Shop for detailed Burmese handicraft, attend a traditional puppetry performance and experience the kind hospitality of the Myanmar people throughout your stay.
For those in search of something more naturally beautiful, an hour-long drive from your hotel in Mandalay city will take you to Dee Doke Waterfalls, which culminate in brilliant blue natural pools where you can enjoy a refreshing swim and stunning photo opportunities.
Experience the Culture and Crafts of Mandalay, Myanmar with a Secret Retreats EscapeStay at Secret Retreats’ boutique hotels in Mandalay, Myanmar and bring home more than memories with a little souvenir from a local market. Alternatively, set up an excursion to visit a local craftsman and acquire handmade treasures straight from the source. The Secret Retreats concierge is just a call or an email away and can help arrange a customised visit.
Mandalay remains an important centre for traditional arts and crafts in Myanmar, where craftspeople still utilise generations-old techniques and tools to create their products. Immerse yourself in the trading hustle of the Jade Market and see jade being cut and polished. Admire the gold leaf workshops where squares of gold are beaten out with sledgehammers, taking workers hours to produce paper-thin sheets of gold leaf. Interested travellers can also visit the stone carver’s district and watch how Buddha statues are still made by hand or see how Myanmar’s beautifully intricate Kalaga tapestries are created from silk, velvet or linen with heavily embroidered details depicting scenes from Buddhist or Hindu history and mythology. For those who enjoy a bit of shopping, Zay Cho indoor market, the largest market in Mandalay, allows you to browse endless stalls of silk, spices, jewellery, lacquerware, clothing and more offering an exotic feast for all senses. After a day of exploring, retreat to your boutique hotel in Mandalay to unwind for the evening and rest up for another day of adventure.