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Bago or Hanthawaddy or Pegu is an urban in Bago Region, Myanmar, which has Mon culture and one of the classic cities of Burmese culture. Various Mon-language chronicles mention cities established between 573 and 1152, while other records mention 1276-1277. But the earliest evidence of the late Pagan period (1212 to 1266) is that Bago is still a small town.

The Hanthawaddy Kingdom is composed of a vast plain stretching from the sea between the Irrawaddy River estuary and the Pegu Range, except for the land channel between the Pegu Range to the east and the Yangon River. The kingdom is intersected with many tidal creeks, many of which are sailed by large boats and some by steamers.

Xvlor Bago is classic Mon-speaking city and center of Hanthawaddy Kingdom Bago is classic Mon-speaking city and center of Hanthawaddy Kingdom

Today, Hanthawaddy is one of Bago's city wards. The district headquarters are in Rangoon which is also the headquarters of the sub-division. The second sub-division has its headquarters in Insein where there are many railroad jobs. Cultivation is almost entirely confined to rice farming, but there are many vegetable and fruit gardens.

The city is populated by ethnic groups Bamar, Shan, Burmese Chinese, Burmese Indians, Kayin who are Buddhist majority. Bago is one of the few classic cities in Myanmar including Old Bagan and Mandalay which are rich in cultural monuments and rites.


Post-Pagan Empire, Bago became part of the Martaban Kingdom until the 1290s and the small settlement was increasingly important in the 14th century under the Mon-speaking kingdom. In 1369, King Binnya U made Bago the capital until 1538-1539 when the kingdom fell.

During the reign of King Razadarit, Bago and Ava Raya were involved in the Forty-Year War. The reign of Queen Shin Sawbu who ended peacefully chose the Buddhist monk Dhammazedi (1472-1492) to succeed. Under Dhammazedi, Bago evolved into the center of Theravada Buddhism and the main port city frequented by Indians and Europeans.

King Minye Thihathu II of the Toungoo Kingdom plundered the city and was later burned by the king of Arakin during the Burmese-Siamese War (1594-1605). King Anaukpetlun rebuilds a city that has been abandoned since King Nanda Bayin. The Burmese capital moved to Ava in 1634 and Mon rebelled in 1740 to establish the Hanthawaddy Kingdom, but King Alaungpaya who led the kingdom of Bamar captured the city in May 1757.

Bago was rebuilt by King Bodawpaya who ruled the Kingdom of Burma in 1782-1819, but the river had shifted and cut off the city. Bago was annexed by Britain in 1852 or post Second Anglo-Burmese War. In 1862, the British province of Burma was established and the capital moved to Yangon. Bago is classic Mon-speaking city and center of Hanthawaddy Kingdom

Xvlor Bago is classic Mon-speaking city and center of Hanthawaddy Kingdom

Location: Bago City, Bago Region, Myanmar.

Routes and public transport: Flights to Hanthawaddy International Airport.

Advice: Bago has many attractions to visit including Shwethalyaung Buddha (Reclining Buddha), Shwemawdaw Pagoda, Kyaikpun Buddha, Kanbawzathadi Palace site and museum, Kalyani Ordination Hall, Mahazedi Pagoda, Shwegugyi Pagoda, Shwegugale Pagoda and Bago Sittaung Canal.

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