5 AWESOME THINGS TO DO IN BAGAN – MYANMAR

5 AWESOME THINGS TO DO IN BAGAN – MYANMAR

A trip to Myanmar is not complete without experiencing the temple town known as Bagan! There is no place on Earth quite as unique as Bagan, once a powerful ancient kingdom in central Myanmar, where 2000+ Buddhist temples and pagodas cover the vast African-like landscape and the Ayeyarwady River drifts down the northern and western sides.

5 AWESOME THINGS TO DO IN BAGAN

#1 BALLOONS OVER BAGAN

High on the list of things to do in Bagan is a once in a lifetime hot air balloon ride over Bagan! Floating swiftly across the tops of some 2,000+ Buddhist monuments is one heck of a Bucket List adventure and one of the best Bagan sunrise experiences you’ll have!

There are several Bagan hot air balloon companies to book a flight with, however, I highly recommend flying with ‘Balloons Over Bagan’

You can book a Bagan balloon ride in advance by heading over to the Balloons Over Bagan website or alternatively send a direct email inquiry to salesdesk@balloonsoverbagan.com

Bagan Hot Air Balloon Season: October – April

Bagan Hot Air Balloon Price: USD $350

Click HERE to see the full blog post of Balloons Over Bagan.

#2 BAGAN TEMPLE HOPPING

Temple hopping was one of my favourite things to do in Bagan! As there are more than 2000 Buddhist temples and pagodas dotted around Bagan, it is impossible to see them all in a few days. However, a few of my favourite Bagan temples that are not to be missed on your Bagan itinerary are listed below:

  • Ananda Temple
  • Shwezigon Pagoda
  • Dhammayan Gyi Temple
  • Dhammayazaka Pagoda
  • Sulamani Temple
  • Ta Wet Hpaya

See All: Hotels and Homestays in Bagan

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#3  WATCHING THE SUNRISE IN OLD BAGAN

Catching a sunrise in Old Bagan has been on my bucket list for years and when I first arrived, that was the first thing on my list of things to do in Bagan! Here is a list of the best sunrise viewpoints in Old Bagan:

  • Bagan Tower
  • Utrecht Temple
  • Sunrise Pagoda
  • Ta Wet Hpaya Temple
  • From a hot air balloon

Find All: Flights/Trains/Buses to Bagan

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#4 SUNSET DINNER BY THE AYEYARWADY RIVER

The ancient temples aren’t the only Bagan attractions to be seen during your visit. A candlelit dinner while watching the sunset behind the mountains on the Ayeyarwady River is one of the best things to do in Bagan!

I highly recommend having dinner at the riverside restaurant attached to Bagan Thande Riverview Hotel for the most unforgettable sunset views over Ayeyarwady River.

Take your pick of a western meal or indulge in some local cuisine, complemented by a glass of wine or a cold beer.

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#5 BAGAN E-BIKE ADVENTURES

Renting an E-Bike in Bagan is one of the best ways to zip silently between all of the best Bagan attractions!

E-Bike Bagan rentals can be found in and around New Bagan, Old Bagan and Nyaung Yu. If you can’t find a Bagan E-Bike rental in town, simply ask your accommodation and they will be sure to help you get some wheels.

Bagan E-Bikes cost around 5000-8000 Kyat ($3-$5) per day and the battery only lasts from sunrise to sunset, so make sure you are fully charged before heading out to explore!

See All: Hotels and Homestays in Bagan

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HOW TO GET TO BAGAN

There are 3 ways of getting to Bagan and that is either by bus, train or plane.

Whether you are on a budget or not, I recommend travelling by bus throughout Myanmar. The main bus companies (JJ Express, Elite, Ok Express) are very efficient and will get you comfortably from A to B.

The cost of bus transportation between cities is on average around $10-$30.

Bus duration times: Yangon to Bagan – 9 hours, Mandalay to Bagan – 4 hours, Inle Lake to Bagan – 8 hours.

To check timetables, prices and to book online in advance click HERE. Alternatively, you can book buses one day in advance through your accommodation in each destination.

Find All: Flights/Trains/Buses to Bagan

BAGAN MAP

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BAGAN – THINGS TO KNOW BEFORE YOU GO

Each foreigner must pay 25,000 Kyat ($15) entrance fee upon arrival to the Bagan Archaeological Area. You may be asked to present this ticket at the entrance to the main temples and pagodas in Bagan, so make sure to carry it with you at all times.

As of late, authorities are preventing the temples and pagodas in Bagan from being climbed by tourists. Most of the temples have now been locked, guarded by security or fences put up around them to stop anyone from climbing them. I did manage to find a couple of random pagodas to scale, which I thought were off the beaten track, but I was caught out by some locals who told me to get down and threatened to call the police. So just be mindful of this and respect the authorities should you get caught 😉

BAGAN ACCOMMODATION

Bagan has dozens of accommodations to choose from so I have narrowed it down to a few of my personal favourite places to stay that caters for luxury travellers to budget backpackers. See the list of accommodations below that I personally recommend:

Luxury: Bagan Thande Riverview Hotel

Mid Range: Bagan View Hotel

Budget: Maya Bagan Hostel

For all other accommodations in Bagan, you can click HERE to search on booking.com

OTHER POINTS OF INTEREST IN MYANMAR

For more Myanmar backpacking adventures, you may want to read my other travel guides below:

10 Best Things To Do In Mandalay

5 Things To Do In Inle Lake

5 Awesome Things To Do In Hpa An

Yangon Bike Tour

Thanks for reading this article an if you have any questions about Bagan please leave me a comment below.

Happy Adventuring 🙂

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