Mount Kyaiktiyo (Kyite Htee Yoe), famous for the huge golden rock called Kyaikhtiyo pagoda and is one of the most revered pilgrimage sites for Myanmar Buddhists. It is located at the summit of Mount Kyaiktiyo, 1,100 meters above sea level, near Kyaikhto in Mon State in the northern part of the Tenasserim coast. The Pagoda was built more than 2500 years ago Kyaikhtiyo pagoda is one of the three most sacred religious sites in Myanmar, along with the Shwedagon Pagoda and the Mahamuni Temple. The rock and the pagoda are at the top of Mt. Kyaikhtiyo. The name ‘Kyaiktiyo Pagoda‘ can be translated to English as ‘The pagoda on the hermit’s head’. It is a huge rock hanging on a mountain cliff about to fall down. Kyikhtiyo pagoda is one of the wonders of the world.
To reach the top of the mountain, one can either make a 13-kilometre climb or take an open truck with other pilgrims along a steep and winding road to a middle camp. From there, all visitors have to walk up the remaining 4 kilometres on a steep track. An easy way for those who can’t walk the way on foot is to rent a sedan chair, which is carried by four porters to the top. You can also explore by hiking from Kinpun and the walk is mostly covered by the jungle canopy and gives the chance to see some lovely views and stupas along the way. Male Buddhists are allowed to paste gold leaf onto the rock, as a sign of devotion. But women are not allowed to go near to the golden rock. They accept their belief and never touch it.
There are a few hotels at the top of Mount Kyaiktiyo. But many people stay in the ‘base camp’ in the village of Kinpun because there have a fresh atmosphere and many good view places and delicious things to eat. Kinpun is a lively place which has many decent guesthouses and restaurants. Once arrived at the pagoda expect spectacular views, particularly at sunrise or sunset. Visitors can enjoy the beautiful view from the top of Mount Kyaitiyo and the sunset is so lovely. If you want to get away from the city and want to explore cultural traditions, breath fresh air, and watch the nature of beautiful scenery, Kyaikhtiyo is the best place you should choose. The whole site has a magic charisma and is a famous site for meditation. In January the five Thousand Lights Festival takes place at Mount Kyaikhtiyo by offering and candle lighting after dark.
Kyaiktiyo is always crowded during festivals period, the weekend and also public holidays. Weekdays are less crowded than other day and fewer people visit during the rainy season. Hundreds of thousands of Burmese come every year to venerate it. People in Myanmar fully believe in this pagoda. Night view of Golden Rock and the Pagoda is really amazing and also sunset view. Kyaikhtiyo pagoda is a traditional historic place that you should not miss when you are in Myanmar.