Shwedagon Pagoda is the holiest Buddhist site in Myanmar and the principal tourist attraction in Yangon. It is claimed to be 2500 years old and holds the relics of 4 past Buddhas. The whole thing is plated with gold and when I visited was being replated as part of its 5-yearly maintenance. The top of the stupa has a weather vane encrusted with thousands of diamonds and other precious stones.
At each of the 4 main entrances to Shwedagon are prayer halls with live closed circuit tv of the upper terraces where the relics are held and only monks and certain males can visit.
There are 8 “planetary posts” representing the days of the week, Wednesday being split into 2; am and pm. I hired a guide who was able to tell me, with use of a special calendar, that I was born on a Saturday. At each post, worshippers pour water over a given animal figure (in my case, the Garuda) to bring good fortune.
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