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Thaton / Moulmein (Mawlamyine) - 
Journey into the homeland of the Mon

Typical Mon Buddha statue


In the morning a return trek and drive to Kinpun. From here begins the 2-hour journey to Thaton, a drive through coconut palm forests and cashew-nut plantations. Long before Bagan advanced to the territorial power, long before the civilization of the Burmese peaked, was Thaton already an important centre of Buddhist religion and erudition. This town was centre of an empire, which stretched from the delta of the Ayeyarwaddy to Thailand and further to Cambodia. Thaton, this was the "heart of the golden land", centre of Suvannabhumi. From here Buddhism spread to Bagan, when in 1057 the first great Bagan-ruler Anawratha conquered the Thaton empire and brought the whole Mon-oligarchy with king and queen to Bagan.

Today in Thaton you will visit the art-historical important Shwe Zayan golden pagoda, built in the early period of the Mon; a, in this pagoda found, standing Buddha shows many similarities with the incomparably famous Dvaravati-buddha in central-Thailand.

Afterwards you will drive through a charming tropical landscape to Mottam (Martaban), where the mighty Salween joins the gulf of Martaban. 

On board a public ferry, you will cross the river. Chinese junks, Sampans and old steamships will cross your path. Finally you will see Moulmein (today Mawlamyine) appear on the riverbank, the former pearl of colonialism, from which already the famous novelist Somerset Maugham sang the praises of. Moumein was the capital of British Burma from 1827 to 1852. Many preserved colonial buildings create an atmosphere of the colonial yesterday - Buddhist pagodas crown the jungle-covered mountains around the town. Overnight-stay (the hotel only offers simple standard). 


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