Mandalay was once the royal capital of Myanmar, and the Mandalay Palace bear best witness to its history, which to some extend shaped Mandalay into what the city is today.
Mandalay Palace was built in between 1857 and 1859 as the residence of King Mindon, marking the founding of Mandalay as the royal capital of Myanmar. The palace generally follows the design of traditional Burmese palaces – encircled by walls and a moat, all buildings within the walls are of one storey in height, and the number of spires above a building indicates the importance of the area below.
In 1885, when the British troops invaded the palace and captured the royal family, the palace ceased its function as a royal palace, marking the coming of British colonial era. Then during World War Two, the palace compound was destroyed by bombing and only the royal mint and the watch tower survived. What we see today is a replica of the palace rebuilt in the 1990s. The watch tower is 33 meters high, where you can get a panoramic view of the palace compound.