via The Irrawaddy, 29 June 2017: Expect a succession of nominations from Myanmar to Unesco’s World Heritage list in the next few years.
The Union minister of religious affairs and culture U Aung Ko said his ministry plans to nominate Arakan State’s Mrauk U and Shwedagon Pagoda for UNESCO’s list of culturally significant sites after Bagan.
Since 2016, countries have been limited to one UNESCO nomination per year so the ministry chose Bagan first, said the minister.
The draft report and draft management plan needed for Bagan’s nomination will be submitted in September and UNESCO officials will visit the site in 2018.
Happy New Year! Well, the Thai new year has just passed and we have a link to Songkran in Wednesday Rojak new year edition. This week, we also get whisked away to the people and architecture of Myanmar, sports in Thailand and some news for photography buffs.
Woozy from jet lag and blinded by a golden reflection of light, I was struck speechless the first time I saw Shwedagon Pagoda.
The shimmering bell-shaped stupa reigning over the 14-acre Shwedagon complex – and indeed over the city itself – is the heart and soul of Yangon. Devotees and visitors come to pray, meet friends, meditate, burn incense, chant or, like me, to just stand dumbstruck.
I still might be standing there if I hadn’t become engrossed in the traditional clockwise stroll around the mosaic-covered columns, spires, prayer pavilions and hundreds of images of Buddha that fill every nook and cranny.
The glistening 32-story stupa is topped by a golden orb studded with 4,350 diamonds and precious stones. Inside, away from the faithful and onlookers, are said to be relics of Buddha. So it’s easy to see why it is the most revered site in Myanmar, the Southeast Asian country formerly known as Burma.
To our little band of Westerners, it was Wonderland.