Tuesday, January 8, 2013

345,000 foreign tourists visited Shwedagon in 2012

Tuesday, 08 January 2013 12:45 Mizzima News    

More than 345,000 foreign tourists visited Rangoon’s Shwedagon Pagoda in 2012, according to Burma’s state-run media.

US President Barack Obama was
one of 355,000 foreign visitors at
Shwedagon pagoda in 2012.
According to the figures, the number of foreign visitors has increased at the iconic Buddhist site every year since 2008 when just 78,323 foreigners visited the ancient pagoda. In 2011, the figure was 225,381. The Shwedagon board of trustees says it has recorded a significant increase in the numbers of British, French and Russian visitors over the past year, according to The New Light of Myanmar.

Standing 99 meters high on a hill that dominates the Rangoon skyline, Shwedagon Pagoda is, according to legend, some 2,600 years old and contains relics of the past four Buddhas, including eight strands of hair of Lord Gautama.

During the reign of military strongman Snr-Gen Than Shwe, an exact replica of Shwedagon was built in the new capital, Naypyitaw.
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