There were also many ordination halls. called Thein in Myanmar. from the Pali. Sima. They were used not only for the ordination ceremony itself. but also for other such ceremonies as the confession by monks. The Upali Thein has a long central nave with a ridge roof and a pair of side aisles with lean-to roofs. Inside. there is an image of the Buddha placed on a pedestal near the western end.
Upali Thein or Upali Sima or the Upali Ordination Hall stands on the northside of the Bagan-Nyaung U tarred road. Ink writings on the northern wall of the west entrance tell us that King Anawrahta and Maha Yhera Upali built and consecrated the Sima. So it came to be known as Upali Sima.
Upali Thein is quite well-known for its accessible location and the beautiful frescoes. This is an interesting place to visit for all visitors to Bagan.
The mural paintings or the ink writings on the wall of the north arched entrance belong to the Konbaung Period (A.D 1752-1885). But the ink writings also mention that the Ordination hall was painted with pictures in Sakarit year of 1156 (A.D 1794) and the fees for the art decoration cost 1920 Kyats.
The structure was built on the original bricj platform of the Bagan Period. Inside the ordination hall are two sitting Buddha images leaning against the wall.
This monument has four arched entrances. Originally it was noted that there used to be a picture of a pair of Buddha's foot prints on the eastern arched entrance. The earthquake in 1975 had destroyed the eastern arched entrance. Some of the frescoes inside the hall also fell down during the quake. On the walls there are mural paintings about the 28 future Buddhas. Some riding elephants. some riding chariots. some on foot and many more. Also in the form of cutting their hair as an act of renouncing the mundane life. Upali Thein has most of the murals paintings about Budda's life. Bagan was the first place which has distributed Theravada Buddism in Myanmar.