Mandalay, U Bein bridge in Amarapura • Myanmar

"Embark on a poetic four-minute crossing through the heart of Mandalay, Myanmar. Discover the majestic U-Bein Bridge, this teak colossus that spans Taungthaman Lake. Follow the path of its history, from the reign of King Mindon to our Immerse yourself in the secrets of its construction and contemplate its 1200 meters of splendor, which make it the longest teak bridge in the world. Do not miss this foray into a heritage work whose beauty will touch you and the stories will will captivate. See its strengths, its weaknesses and its resilience in the face of the passage of time. Each post tells a story, each plank an epic. The video of this Myanmar gem is an invitation to wonder. Prepare to be fascinated, the U-Bein bridge is waiting for you."

This film was made on the basis of photos and videos taken during the trip Myanmar • Burma (EN)

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Reading the text below will help you better understand the historical context of the sites shown in this video.

It seems that the Burmese were used to changing capitals. Thus, Amarapura was the capital of Burma twice in its history before being definitively deprived of this title in 1841 when the penultimate king of Burma, King Mindon founded Mandalay and decided to make it his new one. capital city.

Not only did the Mindon make Mandalay his capital, but he also decided to move many of the palaces, monasteries and official buildings to Mandalay. The palaces were made of teak wood, which facilitated their dismantling and reconstruction in their new destination.

the U-Bein bridge

When the main buildings were dismantled and taken to Mandalay, a large quantity of pillars and teak planks remained and piled up in Amarapura.

Amarapura is located near Taungthaman Lake and many of the town's residents had to cross this lake regularly. So the mayor of Amarapura decided to use them for the construction of a teak bridge that would span the river, thus greatly facilitating the passage of the inhabitants.

The construction of the U Bein bridge

The construction of the bridge lasted 2 years, from 1849 to 1851. The bridge is posed on 1089 posts recovered from the buildings of the old capital. To counteract the force of water and wind, engineers gave this 1,200-meter-long bridge a rounded shape.

As Taungthaman Lake is also open to navigation, the engineers have imagined creating 9 passages in the bridge, where the floor can be raised to allow boats to pass.

The U Bein Bridge is considered to be the longest teakwood bridge in the world, and it has meanwhile become the oldest as well.

The U Bein bridge nowadays

And it's starting to show some signs of weakness and wear. A number of its wooden pillars have been replaced with concrete and there are more and more pillars in poor condition.

One of the reasons for the rotting of the posts supporting the bridge is to be found, among other things, in a fish farming program that caused the water to stagnate, favoring the rotting of the wood. However, there are plans for the restoration of this bridge which has become an emblem of Myanmar and an important tourist spot.

about the place, Mandalay:

Located on the banks of the Irrawaddy River, Mandalay is Myanmar's second city after Yangon (Rangoon). Founded in 1857 by King Mindon, Mandalay became the capital of the Konbaung dynasty in place of Amarapura.

It was also the last royal capital of Burma before annexation by the British in 1885. However, it remained a leading commercial and cultural center during the British era.

The city was devastated during the conquest of Burma by Japan in World War II and it became part of the newly independent Union of Burma in 1948.


Spoken comments in the film: 

The U-Bein Bridge in Amarapura near Mandalay is one of the must-see places on a trip to Myanmar. When King Mindon decided around 1850 to move the capital of the Konbaung kingdom from Amarapura to Mandalay, with the dismantling of a lot of public or religious buildings, thousands of teak pillars piled up in Amarapura. The then mayor therefore decided to use them to build a teak footbridge to cross Taungthaman Lake. This teak bridge became the longest in the world with its 1060 pillars and 1200 meters long. It is also one of the most emblematic places in Myanmar.



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Disclaimer: Despite its appropriateness, copyright issues prevent the use of burmese traditional music in "Mandalay, U Bein bridge in Amarapura • Myanmar", hence the use of royalty-free music. Despite our careful selection, some might regret this decision, which is necessary to avoid potential lawsuits. Although difficult, this decision is the only viable solution.

shadows on the bridge, Mandalay • Myanmar
boats at the foot of the U Bein bridge, Mandalay • Myanmar

boats at the foot of the U Bein bridge

U Bein Bridge in Amarapura, Mandalay • Myanmar

U Bein Bridge in Amarapura

under U Bein Bridge, Mandalay • Myanmar

under U Bein Bridge

sunset at U Bein bridge, Mandalay • Myanmar

sunset at U Bein bridge

Mandalay, Myanmar • U Bein bridge

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