Located approximated 600 kilometers north of Yangon, along the Ayeyarwaddy River (meaning ‘mother of water’), Mandalay is Myanmar’s second largest city as well as the main communication and trading center in the northern and central part of the country. This capital city of Mandalay region is accessible through road, airway and railway.
- Location: 600 kilometers north of Yangon
- Status: capital city of Mandalay Region
- Population: approximately 1.6 million
- Area: 915.1 square kilometers
- Religions: Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Islam
- Myanmar’s second largest city and also its last royal capital
Along the roadsides from the airport to the city, there are stretching wheat fields alternating sunflower fields. However, the bright yellow color of sunflowers is not as bright as the warm smiles and enthusiasm of local people. Formerly known as Ratanapunja, Mandalay towards Burma is much like Kyoto towards Japan, or Hue towards Vietnam – it is the royal capital of the final independent Burmese Kingdom before being conquered by British colony in 1886. Later on, the city was named after Mandalay Hill, a charming hill of 236 meter high.