Exploring the stunning temples of Bagan
Bagan, Myanmar is one of the world’s greatest archaeological sites, and one of the attractions you’d be mad to miss on a trip to this magical corner of Asia. The temples of Bagan are the largest and densest concentration of Buddhist temples, pagodas and ruins in the world – there are over 2200 to feast your eyes on here!
Visiting the temples at Bagan during sunset or sunrise is an unforgettable experience, one which is difficult to match. The views over the temples as the sky slowly lightens up or becomes silhouetted by the figures of these great structures are remarkable. Due to the extraordinary nature of the views, it can get crowded here, so it is best to get to the temple site early for the best experience.
There is a range of different transport options for travelling around the Bagan temple site. A great way to nip amongst them is hiring e-bikes from where you are staying or from hire points in the local villages. Due to the temples being densely compacted, travelling around on e-bikes makes for a satisfyingly quick and easy way to see as many as you can in your available time. For visitors looking for a next-level experience, you can try a sunrise or sunset hot air balloon ride. The 45-minute flight drifts over much of the site, offering you a bird’s eye view of the temples whilst also allowing you to see the magnificent vista of the river and surrounding mountains in the distance.
The Bagan temples are considered sacred by the Burmese, so tourists are asked to dress modestly, making sure you cover your knees and shoulders. Shoes and socks must be removed when entering temples. Take plenty of cash with you, as when you reach Myanmar you will have limited access to ATMs to withdraw.
The architectural variety of the temples here is spectacular and each one offers an exciting new experience. Ananda temple is one of the best known and most beautiful on site, and the enormous glimmering gold plate that completely covers the Shwezigon Pagoda will take your breath away. The Largest temple on the Plains is Dhammayangyi, which from a distance resembles an Egyptian pyramid. Due to the vast number of temples in Bagan it is highly unlikely you will be able to see them all in one visit, but even if you only have time to take in a few, the majesty of these great temples is sure to make your personalised holiday an unforgettable one.