Monywa lies on the banks of the Chindwin River, about 140 kilometers northwest of Mandalay. It is the gateway for excursions to the cave temples of Pho Win Taung, situated across the river and usually reached by ferry. The caves are famous for their Buddha statues, mural paintings and wood carvings. There are quite a few legends surrounding the caves, mostly related to famous nat spirits. There are supposed to have been more than 400,000 Buddha image carved into the caves. Another highly regarded attraction is Thanbhodday (or Sambuddha Kat Kyaw) Pagoda, completed in 1951 after 12 years. There are about 800 small stupas on and around the pagoda, as well as 582,357 Buddha statues in and on the ceiling, walls, archways and niches of the building.
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