Myanmar: Shwedagon Pagoda
Shwedagon Pagoda is the most sacred Buddhist monument in the entire country. Massive and magnificent don’t even begin to describe it. The central pagoda built in the 6th century is 99 meters tall and covered with real gold (loads and loads of it). The crown is tipped with 5448 diamonds and 2317 rubies, and the very top has a 76 carat diamond. Pagoda is not the only thing here – there are two dozen gilded temples towering all around. Relics from all four previous Buddhas are contained here – tooth, hair, piece of cloth. There are thousands of prayers kneeling in front of exuberance golden Buddhas all around the complex grounds. It’s a total religious and gold and Buddha overload all at once but still mesmerizing.