Rivers of Myanmar-Burma

The mighty Ayeyarwaddy River, the most important in the Union of Myanmar as its life-blood stream, had been in existence at least for (15) million years about its source in Northern Myanmar. From there, till it flows into the Gulf of Mottama after traversing over half of the country for about (1055)miles, this most important commercial waterway also known as the “ Elephant River” for its broad width and length is serving as the interests of Myanmar in many ways.

The Kachin State, the northern-most in the Union of Myanmar, where is the birth place of Ayeyarwaddy, has many interesting features geologically. Its Northern boundary lies at the eastern end of the World’s largest and the highest “Hindu Kush Himalayan” mountains, at the same time joining up with the part of the Tibetan plateau and the Sino-Himalaya.

The area where Hindu Himalaya and Sino Himalayan meet, which is an area mountain tops are always covered with snow and ice.  The high mountain chain forms a natural barrier, the most prominent mountains what is known as the “Putao Knot” with a height of (10,000) feet and always snow-bound. It is here that one of the sources of the Ayeyarwaddy named the “May-Li-Kha” takes the form of a mountain stream.

A notable feature of the “May-Li-Kha” river is that it makes a curve flow around the Kaung-Mu-Lon” Pagoda, built by King Asoka in “ 300” BC.

The other source of the Ayeyarwaddy - called the “Maykha” starts at the foot of the highest mountain in Myanmar, the (5881) meters high “Khaka Borazi”. Actually, two mountain streams called the “Adoon Wan” and “Sein Khoo Wan” join up to form the “Maykha” river. Since the Maykha has to flow over very rough and steep terrain, it naturally has a fast current. However, this natural condition of the Maykha provides the current speed for the onward flow of the Ayeyarwaddy.

Another geographical significance is that not only the original source of the Ayeyarwaddy but also the sources of the rivers like. Brahmaputra, Nujung ( or ) upper part of Than-Lwin., Mekong and Yangtze, can be seen within the (20) square mile of “Languela” area also known as the “World Sacred Water Tower”.

The triangular area between the two rivers called the “Sha Ngaw” range, with its over (10,000) feet high mountains becomes the watershed for both Maykha and Maylikha rivers. Maylikha river, with its source in Mali-khoo-khon-naw’ area  flow very gently for over (150) miles, till its confluence with the Maykha river and flowed with very rapid speed for over (220) miles.

The exact place where the mighty Ayeyarwaddy was formed by these two rivers is at ,Latitude 25 degrees 42 minutes North, and Longitude 97 degrees 30 minutes East, at a height of about (500) feet above sea level, and about (29) miles from the Kachin State capital, Myitkyina.

At the confluence, the width of May Kha ( or ) “Inmaikha” is over 300 yards and May Li Kha is about (300) yards. Coming down the Ayeyarwaddy from the confluence of the Maykha and Maylikha rivers, a picturesque place called “Karein-naw” or “Karein-Sarra". Karein-naw" meaning name of a person and “Sarra” meaning a rest area or resort. This pleasant area is also a Welcoming Point for those approaching the capital of Kachin State. From its beginning or its birth, the Ayeyarwaddy or the Mighty River; thus provides the people of Myanmar with wonderful scenery, many natural resources  throughout its course into the sea, also leaving behind sweet and beautiful memories.

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