Caves in Myanmar
Myanmar is a big country in south east asia consisting of different landscapes from the north to the south. And caves can be found widely especially in the mountain regions. Myanmar people are super religious and whenever they found a cave, they decorate with Buddha images and build pilgrimage site. As a matter of fact, you will find Buddha structures in almost all of the caves apart from the very remote ones. Here are the most famous and visited caves in Myanmar.
Pindaya is a town in the Shan State of Myanmar. It is located in the west of the state in Pindaya Township in Taunggyi District. The Pindaya cave is an important pilgrimage site for Buddhists and an attractive, unusual sight for tourists. This cave that is about 150 meters long contains thousands of Buddha images in various styles and from different eras from the early Konbaung dynasty era to present day.
Bayin Nyi Cave
One of the Famous Cave in Hpa-An is Bayin Nyi cave. It is located north of Hpa-An, on the Dondami River, 51miles from Mawlamyaing and 15miles from Thaton. The cave itself is not illuminated by natural light. However, there are said to be intermittent areas that are lit by sunlight through small openings in the rock ceiling. During the latter part of the wet season, there is sometimes a chance to enjoy hot springs that form due to the amount of water in the area.
The cave is one of the most wonderful destinations in Hpa An and it is also called cave of the Ten Thousand Buddhas. It is a very important 7th century archaeological site so it is a sacred site for the ethnic Mon to come here and woship. Many small Buddhas images were carved unbelievably sophisticated on the wall and all the way to its ceiling. Kawgun cave is of great value for history, religion, culture and architecture to study the former Burmese.
Hpa An is famous for the amazing limestone rock formations containing many cave temples in its surroundings. Among several caves, Saddan is a must-see one in Hpa An. Saddan means Royal Elephant and there are 2 stone elephants and a staircase in the middle leading inside. The cave is 500 meters long and at least 10 meters high. There are large number of bats under the ceiling and their excrement covering the floor. Stupas, wall golden frescoes and Buddhas statues are placed all along the walking path. You can see the various stalagmites, stalactites and other cave structures. From the cave exit, a picturesque lake surrounded by limestone and trees comes into sight. From there, a small nutshell boat takes under the mountain passing a half flooded cave, following channels of the surrounding rice paddies till the front side of the cave.
Kaw Ka Thaung Cave
Kaw Ka Thaung Cave is situated Kaw Kyaik east of the Zwegabin hill and close to Hpa-an in Kayin State. There’s a long row of Stone Monks with their alms bowls line up the street. The cave is only 53m long and inside you can see Buddha figures of various shapes and sizes and is full of statues. Local people come to the cave to have a refreshing swim in an enclosed part of the cool lake.
Htan San Cave
Hten San cave is located 26 miles (42km) from Taunggyi, the capital city of Shan State near the town of Hopong. Hten San is one of the marvellous limestone caves in myanmar, it is a natural limestone cave at 1800 meter above sea level. The cave is natural cave and quite large with some place about 20 feet hight. The system protects the massive and age-old stalactites and stalagmites. The natural beauty in this highlight is fascinating while some Buddhist tributes are gaudy.
Pyadalin historical cave is an important archaeological site on the western slope of Shan State, Taunggyi district, near Ywangan Township. This cave was firstly discovered by geologist U Khin Maung Kyaw in 1960 and the “Stone Age” painting from 10,000 years ago were first found in this cave. This cave consists of one main cave and a nearby rock shelter where the paintings are. The first excavations by the Government from 1969-1972 they found charcoal pieces which have been 13,000 years old. The rock shelter is more interesting from an archaeological point of view. Archaeological excavations revealed stone tools, as well as mammalian bones, mollusc shells and charcoal. This cave system is more atmoshperic than the heavily touristed Pindaya Caves.
Peik Chin Myaung Cave
Peik Chin Myaung also known as Maha Nandamu Cave is a limestone stalactite cave locating on Lasio road near Wetwun village.12 miles east of Pyin Oo Lwin town. It is a limestone cave estimated between 230 million and 310 million years old. That name means numerous Peik Chin plants gorwing here. The entrance is 20 feet wide and 1,600 ft long. The corners and niches are covered with many Buddha images and pagodas in all sizes as well as positions. Inside the cave, many underground springs flow from different directions. A large number of stalactites and others have formed due to water seeped and dropped from rocks and limestone. Some pilgrims pick up this water because they believe that it can cure skin-diseases and sore eyes. There is a three layers waterfall which a few minute walking distance from Peik Chin Myaung.
The famous Kyet cave, located between lokaw and Shadaw in Kayah State,situated nine miles away from Loikaw. It has been announced as a national reserve area, according to Ministry of Environmental Conservation and Forestry. The cave is also called “Yarsu Ku” ( Yarsu means gunpowder and Ku means hole) as people used to use bat-dropping found there to produce gunpowder for fireworks. Kyat Cave which is famous in Kyaya State is now well-known. The 1700 foot-deep cave is said to host evil spirits and ghosts that are able to bestow miracles as well as evil spells. Foreigners and people come from across the country are come to visit the cave. Kayah State is now mostly open for visitors.