Fulfilling a Buddhist prophecy King Mindon selected the short lived site of the Burmese Royal capital at the foot of Mandalay Hill.
The British conquered upper Burma in 1885 and exiled King Thibaw into India ending Mandalay’s role as a capital city.
Travelling to Mandalay was partly an excuse to do a nice night bus but also as a transit stop before heading North into Shan States. That is why this post is very light on detail!
Mandalay is a well known city partly because of a Rudyard Kipling poem called Mandalay written after he had visited Mawlamyine (formerly Moulmein). Kipling never made it as far as Mandalay. This hasn’t stopped a plethora of bars being named after him.