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Shwedagon Oil Lamp Ceremony

The Shwedagon Pagoda is a ‘must’ for any visitor to Yangon. Yet tonight you will truly experience Shwedagon in a way that very few tourists are able to do.

A tailor-made Shwedagon Pagoda tour

Early this evening, arrive at Singuttara Hill, the home of the Shwedagon Pagoda. While gazing up at the glittering 99-metre stupa, your guide will give you some background information about Shwedagon and explain why it is so important to Myanmar’s Buddhist population.

Then ascend to the main pagoda platform for a closer look. As you walk along the marble-tiled floor, you will pass by local worshippers saying prayers or making offerings. Learn about the daily routines of Buddhists and get an introduction to Myanmar astrology, seeing how the two belief systems are integrated. You will also likely see monks in their deep red robes and nuns in light pink robes focused on their mediation or chanting evening prayers.

The daily rituals of Myanmar’s monks

As the sun casts its last rays on Shwedagon’s golden stupa, head to a quiet corner of the pagoda platform for a special blessing. Sit on the floor while Buddhist monks chant wishes of good health and happiness. Although you will not understand the words, you will feel the genuine warmth and sincerity of these blessings.

Experiencing the unique Oil Lamp Ceremony

After this short ceremony, return to the base of Shwedagon where thousands of oil lamps await. Take a long candle and start to light the handmade lamps, slowly creating a ‘river’ of flickering flames around the gilded pagoda. Oil lamps and candles are commonly used in Buddhist ceremonies as the flame represents the enlightenment of the Buddha and the positive light of his teachings. By partaking in this ceremony, you are experiencing a special aspect of Myanmar culture and it is likely that local worshippers and perhaps monks will join.

Once the oil lamps are illuminated, step back and admire the gorgeous scene. Take a moment to soak up the atmosphere and magic that makes Shwedagon so special.

Filled with unforgettable memories of the evening, return to the base of Singuttara Hill and drive to dinner or to your hotel.

  • Culture immersion 90%
  • Local encounters 80%
  • Exclusive 100%


  • Capturing the magic of Shwedagon Pagoda with a special oil lamp ceremony
  • Enjoying the atmosphere as the river of flames flicker in the quiet evening air at Myanmar’s holiest site



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