The last Royal Palace of Myanmar Kingdom, Mandalay Palace was constructed between 1857 and 1859 by King Mindon. His son King Thibaw was the last to reside at the Palace until 1885. On 28 November 1885, the troops of the Burma Field Force entered the palace and captured the royal family. The Mandalay Palace compound was then turned into Fort Dufferin by the British.
The Mandalay Palace plan follows traditional Burmese palace design. The palace citadel’s four walls form a perfect square. There are 48 bastions with gold tipped spires at regular intervals of 555 ft along the wall. The surrounding moat is 210 ft wide and 15 ft deep with five bridges across it. Of the five original bridges, the south-western gate is known as amingala gate, used to carry off dead bodies only.
During the British invasion, the materials inside the palace buildings were looted by the British soldiers. Of the artifacts that were taken to be presented to Queen Victoria, some are on display at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London and some of the jewelries are on display at the Tower of London. The British also burned down the royal library then. Sadly, the surviving buildings were completely destroyed during the Second World War by the allied bombing, except for the watch tower and the royal mint. In the 1990’s the Myanmar government built replica of the palace, using modern materials.
The largest and considered to be one of the most beautiful buildings inside the Mandalay Palace compound is Hmannandawgyi or the Glass Palace. It was King Mindon’s principal living apartment and also where his body was laid out for viewing after his death in 1878.
|Opening Hours||opens daily from 7:30 am until 5:00 pm.|
|Admission Fees||US$5 per person.|
|Location||Located at the East gate.|
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