Being as one of the key attractions of Southern Shan State, Phaung Daw Oo pagoda is situated in the middle of Inle Lake and is a famous for pagoda that houses five Buddha images of Bagan era. The Buddha images have been covered in gold leaf throughout ages that they are essentially solid gold and extremely heavy. It is believed that these images were brought to Inle Lake by King Alaungsithu, king of Bagan Dynasty from 1112/1113 to 1168.
The festival of the pagoda lasts 18 days starting from 1st waxing day to 3rd waning day of Thadingyut (September to October). During the festival, people from surrounding communities carry fruits and flowers on lacquer trays, and pay homage to the five Buddha images on royal barge carried by hundreds of leg-rowing-boats. Competition of leg-rowing-boats races is also very famous in the pagoda festival. The royal barge, now a replica, is decorated elaborately and headed by hintha bird design. The images are carried from village to village and remain in the main monastery of each village for the night, but one image will always remain at the pagoda.
It was said that in the 1960s the barge carrying the images capsized due to strong wind and waves on the lake. The people were not able to recover one image from the lake. However, when they arrived at the monastery, the image that was missing was miraculously sitting in its place.
Inle Lake Shan Hills (TaungGyi) Heho
Ngwe Saung Beach
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