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 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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