Mandalay, the erstwhile royal capital of Myanmar, occupies a pride of place in the country as a key cultural and religious centre. It is the second largest city in Myanmar. Situated on the banks of Irrawaddy River, it was called “Yadanabon” or “City of Gems”. Mandalay is well-connected to all the regions and states in the upper part of Myanmar and, over the years, has emerged as a key urban centre, attracting people for economic and educational opportunities.
With a population of about 1,225,553 people, the city is home to Mandalay University, the second oldest and largest university in Myanmar, catering to students across Upper Myanmar. Securing admissions in other universities in Mandalay, such as the University of Medicine, the University of Dental Medicine, Mandalay Technological University, and the University of Computer Studies, is very competitive, demonstrating the city’s central role in providing robust educational opportunities. Other highly esteemed universities are Myanmar Aerospace Engineering University and the sophisticated Defense Services Academy, situated at Pyin Oo Lwin, a scenic hill station (and erstwhile colonial summer capital) 65 miles from Mandalay.
Growing tourism in and around Mandalay has led to the development of the local tourism industry. Mandalay’s tourist season, from October till March, has much to offer – from pagodas and authentic Myanmar cuisine to tours of Mandalay Palace and Mandalay Hill, key sites in the city.
Seasons in Mandalay are clearly demarcated into a hot summer (end-February to June), monsoon (July to October), and a pleasant winter (December to February).
For visitors, winter is the best time to visit and walking around the city’s many fruit and vegetable markets is a must! The city also has well-equipped gymnasiums and a large sports stadium for those interested in outdoor activities. Trendy malls, movie halls, and coffee shops are other popular destinations in Mandalay.