Kyauk Taw Gyi Pagoda – Mandalay Attractions
The Kyauk Taw Gyi Pagoda is also referred to the as the Great Marble Image. The structure houses a statue of Lord Buddha which has been carved out of a single block of pale green marble. The stone block from which the statue has been carved out was extracted from a quarry located twelve miles on the north of Mandalay called Sagyin. The story of transporting the rock however has several versions. Some people say that it took around 10,000 to 12,000 men to shift the stone to the site of the temple over a period of thirteen days while others are of the belief that a canal was dug to float the stone to the site. As the waiter level was insufficient to transport the rock, 10000 laborers were asked to raise the level of water.
The Kyauk Taw Gyi Pagoda has one of its entrances on the opposite side of the Mandalay Hill. The construction of the pagoda began in 1853. Owing to some internal disturbances and a rebellion that took place, the construction was not complete until the mid 1860s. It is said that the original plan was to construct a temple at the site, resembling the Ananda Pahto in Began. However, the completed structure hardly bears any resemblance to the site. The corridors marking the entry to the site glimmer with mirrored tiles which are engraved in golden accents and green grout.
The inner wall of the pagoda is dotted with small alcoves, which contain small images of the Buddha. Several huge statues of Buddha are placed on different sides of the interiors of the temple as well.