Arriving at Sittwe makes you step back in time, with an airport consisting of just one room with ceiling fans. A port city, Sittwe served as a major trading point with India during the time of the British. Sittwe boasts several interesting pagodas and an exceptional monastery with a wonderful collection of Buddha images, some dating back to the 15th century when Mrauk Oo reached its zenith.
Sittwe’s main importance for tourists lies in the fact that it is the starting point for a boat journey on the Kaladan River to the ancient capital and important archaeological site of Mrauk U. Most of the sites in Mrauk U date back to the 15th and 16th centuries, such as Shittaung Pagoda, which was built by King Minbin in 1535 and remains the main attraction for visitors. As well as a host of other pagodas, the ruins of the royal palace and the remains of the city walls are worthwhile sightseeing points.
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