Bo Ta Thaung Pagoda
Located on the Yangon River bank, the Bo Ta Thaung has for centuries been a navigator's landmark just as the Bu Paya was in ancient Bagan. Bo means a military officer and Ta Thaung means a thousand military personnel or vanguards, which were said to have constituted a guard of honour when the Buddhas' relics were personally received by King Okkalapa from India .
The pagoda was hit by an allied forces bomb in November 1943, and was rebuilt from public contributions in 1953. The removal of the debris afforded authentication of the origin of this pagoda because the excavations revealed a relic chamber and a stone casket inside it, shaped like a pagoda, and quite a variety of treasures such as precious stones, ornaments, engraved terra-cotta plaques, gold, silver, and brass and stone images. As many as 700 images were found.
One terra cotta plaque is of great historical significance because one side bears the image of Lord Buddha and other a Pali inscription in the evolved Brahmin script of South India . The script had been adopted by the Mon.
The new pagoda, built of reinforced concrete, closely follows the destroyed original and its height is 131 feet 8 inches. It retains the ancient motif and hollow inside so that people can enter.
Another unique feature is the showcases that have been worked into the walls all round to house the many relics that were unearthed during the excavation. In the centre, the exact spot of the old reliquary, is a well-like hollow which will be the depository of the sacred relics.