Bagan

destination-baganBagan is situated in the middle of Burma – see map – in the tropical zone, and on the eastern bank of the Ayeyarwady River. Its glory days were in the 11th century when it was ruled by King Anawratha, however the city was originally established in the 9th century by King Pyinbya. In the reign of King Anawratha, Buddhism reached the Bagan Empire with the help of monk Shinarahan, and its inhabitants came to believe in Buddhism. The Empire of Bagan was destroyed in the 13th century.

Mt. Popa

Mt. Popa volcanoAn  extinct volcano 1518 metres (4981 feet) above sea level in the Pegu range of mountains. Easy to reach by car, it is only 5km from Bagan. Nats festival is held there in May and June of each year.

Salay

The town of Salay is 36 km from Bagan and famous for its ancient monastery with wood carvings of Jataka (the former lives of Buddha). It took a decade to finish this monastery (1882-1892) and the building is solely built using wood.  The town is also famous for its seedless plums.

INTERESTING PLACES IN BAGAN

Shwezigon Pagoda, BaganShwezigon

Shwezigon was built by King Anawratha in 11th century after he ascended to the throne and it is a prototype of present Myanmar Pagodas, the Shwezigon Pagoda is widely accepted to be the north border-line of Bagan. King Anawratha brought relics of Buddha from Sri lanka and built four Pagodas in four different directions.  Nat images, 37 Nats figures, and many other interesting things can be found in this pagoda.

Ananda Temple, BaganAnanda Temple

It was built by king Kyansittha in 1105 AD and considered to be a masterpiece among early Bagan Temples. There are four huge Buddha Images in the standing position 9.5m high.  It would be difficult not to appreciate the beautiful architecture of this temple.  Ananda Oakkyaung (the brick monastery) is situated near the Temple and contains notable mural paintings.

Thatbyinnyut Temple, BaganThatbyinnyut Temple

This temple was built by King Alaungsithu in the 12th century and is the highest temple (over 6 meters) in Bagan. There are 539 Jataka depictions of Buddhas life on the glazed plaques.

Shwegugyi Temple, BaganShwegugyi Temple

Built by king Alaungsithu in the 12th century, two original doors still remain today. The temple is constructed from teak wood and visitors are welcome to climb the temple to view the landscape of Bagan.

Dhammayangyi Temple, BaganDhammayangyi Temple

Built by king Narathu in the 12th century and the biggest temple of Bagan, unfortunately due to his death the temple has remained unfinished.

Gubyaukgyi Temple (myinkabar), Bagan

Gubyaukgyi Temple (myinkabar)

This temple was built by Jazakumar, son of the king Kyansittha, in the 12th century and contains a variety of well preserved and interesting murals.

Manuha and Nanpaya, BaganManuha and Nanpaya

Built by king Manuha from Thaton, who was captured by King Anawratha in the 11th century and resided in Bagan as a prisoner, he built this temple to express his feelings.

To the south of Manuha, there is a beautiful temple called Nanpaya built by the grandson of Manuha after he died. This temple houses some beautiful figures of Brahma.

Other interesting places in Bagan

Shwesandaw, Mahabohdi, Sulamani, Bupaya, Dammarazika, Tayokpyay paya, Payathonesu, Lawkananda, Htilominlo, to name but a few, we are happy to recommend places of interest should you wish to visit Bagan.

Sunset

We recommend you visit Pyathatgyi Temple in the evening, as it is quite simply the best place for watching the sun set and experiencing the true magnificence of Bagan.

 

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