Bagan and Around
Bagan, being the capital of the first ever Burmese Empire, possesses the most opulent collection of archaeological treasures in the country. The city panorama itself is magical with striking silhouettes of over 2,000 pagodas and temples constructed between 1057 and 1287 protruding from its dusty roads and overgrown greenery. Feast your eyes on the dazzling Shwezigon, one of the earliest Buddhist buildings known, explore the interior of the Ananda Temple where a gallery of glazed works, stone sculptures, and mural painting awaits, and watch the beautiful sunset atop the Shwesandaw. View these architectural masterpieces and many more through hot air balloons, ox carts, and bicycles. Find out more about how to get to Bagan on our travel and transport .
Myanmar's very own Mount Olympus, Mount Popa is a extinct volcano of a staggering 1518 meters height. To travelers, it is the place for an enjoyable hiking and sightseeing experience as Mount Popa is situated inside a beautiful nature reserve with lush forests and streams. To the pilgrims that flock there every festival season, it is a place of spiritual mystique as the most powerful nats are believed to inhabit there. A visit to Mount Popa is not complete without hiking to the Popa Taungkalat monastery that rests high on one of its many hills.
Monywa is a town containing unique Buddhist sites that you will not be able to find anywhere else in the country. Among them includes Bodhi Tahtaung, a fascinating forest of 1,000 Bodhi trees where beneath each of the tree is a Buddha shrine. In the backdrop to this spectacle is the 300 feet Po Khaung Taung where you will see one of the largest reclining Buddha statues. Other attractions are Mohnyin Thambuddhei Temple, an architectural wonder that rivals that of IndonesiaÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Borobudar and Pho Win Hill caves where ancient Buddhist murals and fossilized remains of early humans have been found.
Salay is another culture heritage spot about an hour away from Bagan. The town is home to Yoke Sone Kyaung monastery which is an artwork itself because of its elaborate wood carvings throughout the building. It is also the birthplace of the reputable writer, U Pone Nya, from the time of the Burmese monarchs and hence, the museum dedicated to his work is also frequented by visitors.