Shwe Yan Pyay Monastery

Shwe Yan Pyay Monastery is advised to be stopped on your route to Heho Airport on your way to Inle Lake in the southern part of Shan State. Shwe Yan Pyay Monastery, which is about 2.4 kilometers to the north of Nyaung Shwe, features stunning 19th-century architecture. Tourists shouldn’t miss the opportunity to observe this tiny yet magnificent monastery due to its distinctive features.

What is Shwe Yan Pyay Monastery special for?

The teak-and-red-painted architecture of the Shwe Yan Pyay Monastery is renowned. The monastery has magnificent statues, intricate ornamentation, and structures with intricate carvings on laminated gilded teak wood. Beautiful carvings and gold leaves embellish the Shwe Yan Pyay Monastery’s ceiling.

The 150-year-old monastery is a masterpiece of Burmese architecture that exemplifies the craft of creating temples during the medieval era. The Shwe Yan Pyay Monastery was built primarily out of teak wood, which is a common building material in Myanmar’s monasteries. All of the building’s components, including the robust stilts, are made of teak wood.

Shwe Yan Pyay Monastery

The monastery was built from teakwood and painted red

One of the monastery’s standout features is its incredibly big oval windows, which are a part of the Ordination Hall and are the size of doors (or Thein in Burmese). An iconic building like this is uncommon in Myanmar. The window hems are embellished with straightforward yet beautiful carvings and reliefs.

They were constructed to provide housing for boys from disadvantaged backgrounds in the area, who would go on to live here and eventually become novice monks. Due to this, unlike many other monasteries and pagodas in Myanmar, Shwe Yan Pyay Monastery lacks the spirit of regal architecture.

Despite being constructed for a common purpose, Shwe Yan Pyay Monastery’s distinctive architecture can be compared to that of any prestigious structure.

Shwe Yan Pyay Monastery

The monastery consists of numerous pillars

What can be seen at Shwe Yan Pyay Monastery?

When you visit Shwe Yan Pyay Monastery, you can get in touch with the resident novice monks and see their quarters. A dormitory housing the young monks takes up half of the monastery building. Here, you may witness the monks live a peaceful existence while they eat, bathe, and wash their garments together.

Despite the building’s age, the teak wood used in its construction ensures that it has a very strong foundation. You should take off your shoes before entering the monastery so that you can wander about. Even with such a large window, the room is quite chilly and dark. Buddha statues, mosaics, mirrors, and beautiful carvings—some embellished with laminated gold—decorate the Ordination Hall.

There are apartments on the sides where the senior abbot instructs the novice monks. The complex’s other structures, including the dining hall and kitchen of the monastery, are also open for exploration.

Shwe Yan Pyay Monastery

The iconic oval windows of the monastery

Recommendations for visitors to Shwe Yan Pyay Monastery

You may visit a shrine next to the monastery to see hundreds of statues of the Buddha dressed in red that have been arranged in niches along the walls of the passageways. The shrine, which is lit by many candles, provides a sacred setting for the monks’ meditation practice.

The monastery’s stunning circular windows make it the perfect backdrop for photos. On the sills of the windows, you can see young monks reading literature.

Shwe Yan Pyay Monastery

Two monks at Shwe Yan Pyay Monastery

You should behave modestly, cover your shoulders and legs, and keep your voice down because this is a working monastery.

There are various methods to visit Shwe Yan Pyay Monastery, however using a car, bike, or walking there is much better. It is very challenging to locate a cab back to your hotel after visiting Shwe Yan Pyay Monastery, therefore if you take a taxi from Nyaung Shwe, ask the driver to wait for you.

Shwe Yan Pyay Monastery

Shwe Yan Pyay Monastery from a farther view