Less than an hour’s drive from the Mon State capital Moulmein, the enormous face of the world’s largest reclining Buddha image comes into view.
Towering 30 meters high and stretching 180 meters in length, the statue near the town of Mudon is known locally as the Two Paddy Birds Pagoda. It has become a popular pilgrimage and tourist site among the Burmese after the chief monk of nearby Win Sein Taw Ya Monastery initiated the project to build it about a decade ago.
The interior of the colossus is divided into five stories with dioramas of the Buddha’s life from cradle to the grave and hell, an alarming reminder for all visitors that sinful deeds will be punished in the afterlife.
Although construction of the reclining Buddha is still in progress, it remains open to the public.