Put your hat and your sunglasses on, get into the explorer mood and venture into the unknown to find freedom and maybe you can even find yourself. Visit Bagan, an ancient city located in the Mandalay Region of Myanmar. From the 9th to 13th centuries, the city was the capital of the Pagan Kingdom, the first kingdom that unified the regions that would later constitute modern Myanmar. During the kingdom’s height between the 11th and 13th centuries, over 10,000 Buddhist temples, pagodas and monasteries were constructed in the Bagan plains alone, of which the remains of over 2,200 temples and pagodas still survive to the present day.
I have visited Bagan at the end of December and- God- what an amazing experience I’ve had. I travelled to over 50 countries until now, I am always glad to discover new places and take the opportunity to create a bond with local communities, but I must admit that never in my recent years (probably since childhood) I have felt so free like in Bagan. I forgot the days of the week, the hours and I just ventured into the unknown on my e-bike, rented with 10 dollars/day from the hotel.
I even forgot to follow the map given and wanted to discover the temples, pagodas and stupas by myself. I have seen 1000 years old paintings in some temples, I have admired the work of dozens of local artists and I even got to some places where I could climb up the temples and I could see the whole view. Splendid and breathtaking. (in Myanmar it is forbidden to climb the pagodas, but there are a few temples where you are allowed to go on top).
In Bagan, the sunrise and the sunset displays a show like no other. You have to get up at least once for the sunrise to see the hot air balloons. The view is mesmerising and it will stay with you for your whole life. There are a few places to see the sunrise, but they are crowded with tourists so I recommend just venturing into the wild until you will find a good spot for incredible photos.
Sunset is equally a show to remember and there are also a few different spots from where you can take the best pictures possible. Just ask the locals or the concierge from the hotel for directions.
When you choose your hotel go for Bagan Lodge, who is just a gateway to the magnificent temples and pagodas. There are plenty of hotels and resorts now in Bagan, but only a few who can meet all the standards of a discerning traveller. If you love to mix adventure with luxury, then Bagan Lodge should be your home in Bagan.
The resort consists in over 80 villas and a few suites. Our villa evoked the romance of a storied expedition, albeit in posh, airconditioned comfort. The restaurant and bars are fuel to the fire of local adventure and our swimming pools, outdoor jacuzzi, sauna and spa are an oasis any time of the day.
The magnificence and authenticity of Bagan combined with Bagan Lodge’s friendly, personalized service provide a stunning canvas on which to create magical and memorable experiences. You may choose stay there for a very short time, but the experience will stay with you forever.
Tiffin Box, the resort’s restaurant offers authentic Myanmar cuisine and other international favorites served at an airconditioned or al fresco setting. The breakfast is good, with plenty to choose from, and for dinner we recommend you the traditional Myanmar lentil soup, the tea leaves salad (local speciality, delicious), and if you like Thai food then the chicken red and green curry and the minced chicken with Basil leaves and lemongrass is very good. I have eaten at Royal Thai cuisine restaurants in Bangkok, but the minced chicken I had here was the best.
In-house guests and their visitors can enjoy freshly brewed coffee, a refreshing drink or afternoon tea in the comfort of the Lobby Lounge Bar. Lounge or take a quick dip in the swimming pools while enjoying fresh fruit juices and refreshing cocktails or indulge in a delicious snack by the pool at the Pool Bar. Daily Happy Hour is from 4:00 PM to 7:00 PM.