Pyay is located on the Irrawaddy River and is 260 km (160 mi) north-west of Yangon. The district of Pyay encompasses the valley of the Irrawaddy. Along the western side of Pyay District are the Rakhine Mountains and along the eastern side are the Bago Range. the ruins of the main city of the Pyu city-states, Sri Ksetra is located 8 km (5.0 mi) to the south-east of Pyay and is in the village of Hmawa. To the south and south-east, the town is closed in by low pagoda-topped hills, on one of which stands the conspicuous gilded Shwesandaw Pagoda.