Located 136 km north-west of Mandalay on the eastern bank of the Chindwin River, Monywa is a major trade center for agricultural products from the surrounding Chindwin Valley. In addition, the local industry includes mills for the production of cotton and edible oils. Monywa's rough cotton blankets are famous throughout Myanmar. Other regional crafts include bamboo and reed products, bullock carts and agricultural implements. Thanboddhay Pagoda is the major tourist attraction of Monywa. The main stupa contains over 500,000 Buddha images of all sizes row upon row in ascending tiers in niches both interior and exterior walls. Thanboddhay is the only pagoda with this unique shape in the whole country. Other attractions include Laykyun Setkyar Standing Buddha Image which is the second tallest Buddha Image in the world at 116 meters. It was built in hollow type and can climb by stairs inside the structure to see the panoramic view. Another attraction is the Phowintaung cave complex across the Chindwin River, approximately 25 kilometres (16 mi) west of Monywa.There are about 900 sandstone caves which contains many carved Buddha images and well preserved mural paintings have been dated to between the 14th and 18th centuries. This hill is thought to be South East Asia's richest collection of Buddhist mural paintings and images.

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