Bagan, the ancient capital of Myanmar is one of the most
incredible archaeological sites in Asia and, once had
approximately 13.000 temples, stupas and other buildings.
This incredible ancient city can be reached in different
ways: by road, plane and boat. It is 685 kms from Yangon by
road and around 325 kms from Mandalay and Heho. By plane it
takes around 1 hour from these same cities. If you like
especial experiences, you can take a fantastic boat trip
from Mandalay to Bagan on the Ayeryarwaddy River that takes
approximately 14 hours.
We begin to have references of Baganīs history around
849. It is known that it is the first place where Buddhism
began in Myanmar. Around 1055 a Mon monk converted to
Buddhism, the King Anawratha who ruled Bagan at its highest
point of wealth, beauty and abundance. He went to war
against the Monīs of Thaton to take the Buddhist Holy
Scripts of Tripitake. When the war ended, 30.000 mon monks
were taken prisoner and many of them were skilled workers
and artisans who left their legacies of talent in the
temples of Bagan, which many of them are in Mon style.
This ancient capital has been hit by wars (was invaded by
Kublai Khan), earthquakes (a devastating one in 1975) and
fires. Many temples have been damaged or destroyed. Roughly
around 2000 temples are left standing and have been restored
but another 2000 are in ruins. The incredible talent of
these ancient craftsmen can still be admired on the walls of
the temples and the stupas.
Bagan is a place that cannot be missed by travelers
coming to visit Myanmar. There are many hotels available for
them and like I mentioned before, it is very easy to arrive
here by road, plane and boat on the Ayeryarwaddy River.
Two of the most dazzling sights not to be missed in Bagan
are: the wonderful sunset at the majestic Mingalazedi Stupa
and the breathtaking hot air balloon ride that will show you
from the air that Bagan is in an area of outstanding natural
beauty and has no rival in its archaeological treasures.