Bagan is the ancient capital city of Myanmar and a UNESCO World Heritage site. During its height from the 11th to 13th centuries, over 10,000 temples, pagodas, and monasteries were built across a vast plain. Today, 2,000 structures still remain, a true sight to behold.
The old school way to visit the temples is by horse cart, a quaint but uncomfortable (cramped and bumpy) endeavor. Nonetheless, this was thrilling for the kids.
The temples are spread over many, many miles, so sometimes the horse cart just was not an option. Plus, Bagan was very hot. We found a very nice guide, Mr. Nyunt, who took us around for a couple days in his air conditioned car. He had a degree in Myanmar history and spoke English quite well. You can see, like most men in Myanamar, he wore the traditional longi, like a sarong, instead of pants.
We saw many beautiful aspects of Bagan thanks to Mr. Nyunt. He even turned us on to a traditional puppet show in town, which was excellent.
We also paid a visit to the market, one of many fascinating local hotspots. I must say, however, the wet market was perhaps the most grotesque I have seen in all of my travels. The plethora of flies did not help my meat eating habit.
In Bagan, we stayed beside the wide and grand Irrawaddy River. It is the country’s most important waterway, flowing from north to south through the entire length Burma. I would have liked to see more of it– maybe next time.
And a few more random shots…