Best Things to Do & See in Bagan
Visiting to the ancient Bagan is likely without taking a hot air balloon which flies in the sky to capture the magnificent views of hundreds of Burmese temples both at the splendid sunrise or sunset, and along with its rich civilization of Pagan Kingdom dates to 1500 years ago. Locates in Mandalay and next to the eastern bank of Irrawaddy River, the must-see plain of Bagan is one of the most significant archaeological sites in Asia, Bagan is also a great place to explore Burmese culture, customs, lifestyle and its wonderful history. Beside the impressive temples who were built from 9th century, Bagan ideally offers unique cultural experience to some local villages famed for traditional cotton thread weaving, crafted lacquer ware & painting, palm sugar, peanut & sesame oil production and blacksmith workshop while horse-cart ride, river boat cruise and elephant camp are available for those who friendly want to get interacted with locals and connected with the environment.
Situates north-east of Old Bagan with 5km, the must-see impressive, gold plated pagoda was built by Burmese Kings Anawrahta & Kyansittha in 11th century, it is purposely served as Buddhism pagoda to enshrine Buddha relics.
With the most outstanding gold spire, Ananda temple is one of ancient temples near Tharabar Gate in the region of Old Bagan, a beautiful blend of Mon & Indian style architecture, with four huge standing Buddhas and 80 relics describing the life of Buddha.
The biggest Buddhist temple was built in 11th century by King Narathu who assassinated his father and brother to take over the throne. It’s the unfinished, constructed brick temple exposing in the open plain of south-east Bagan, is one of the interesting ancient temples in Myanmar.
Features one big and many small spires, this built 12th century temple is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Bagan.
Similar to Sulamani temple design, Thetbyinnyu Temple was constructed in 12th century and arises 61 meters from the ground level and it is visible from distance among other temples in Bagan region.
Vertically emerges 46 meters from the ground for Bagan, the temple of Htilominlo was named according to the chosen King Htilominlo – the son of King Narapatisithu. It’s one of Buddhist brick temples along with intricately carved walls and spires and was built in 13th century.
When visit the majestic pagodas of Bagan, Tharabar Gate is the most popular spot to stop by to grab the highlights of Burmese history and a nice place to take photos.
Houses various precious artifacts and the collection of antique objects, The Bagan Archaeological Museum is the right place for those who like to witness arts, crafts, architectures, archaeology, finest wood/stone carvings and sculptures in Myanmar.
The lost volcano rises among the forest and 1518 metres above the sea level, the pilgrimage site atop Taung Kalat Buddhist Monastery which is regarded as one of Nat spirit temples in the region. Mount Popa is one of popular travel destinations in Myanmar, from the summit where you can enjoy the panoramic views of jungle, mountains, the plain of ancient Bagan and Irrawaddy River from distance, it takes around 1.3 hour drive from Old Bagan.
Nyaung U Market
The top must-see tourist site in Bagan, Nyaung U Market is the best place for shopping while wandering to observe plenty of bustling trade activities between vendors and buyers, from crafted productions, lacquerware, silk fabrics to fresh fish, vegetables and meats.
Palin River View Elephant Camp
Although, elephant ride is not a good way to connect with environment as well as not recommend to ride elephants in any places but you are welcomed to join this friendly eco-tourism at Palin River View Elephant Camp which provides a memorable experience to get in touch with elephants and understand elephants’ behavior, and playing, feeding and bathing elephants in Irrawaddy River are also included at the camp which is not far from Old Bagan and with half an hour drive.
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