Myanmar is one of the most incredible places I have visited with such a fascinating culture and the happiest of people. It is also a great time to visit now before it gets mass tourism like its neighbouring countries. I will be doing a few posts on Myanmar – starting with Bagan, the temple city.
How to get there?
Air KBZ ( a domestic carrier) flies twice daily in the morning and once in the afternoon to Bagan. I would recommend the 9am flight as it is direct. The website and as you can see in the photo below, the plaines are small and all the luggage is taken on and off the plane manually. This makes it so efficient and there was no waiting around for your baggage. The service was amazing and for a one hour flight even got snacks!
As you land into Bagan you must look out of the window. I don’t know about you but when I am landing in a city I always love looking out the window at the place I am about to land, as the world is so wonderful and diverse. When landing in Bagan you see hundreds of temples dotted everywhere its amazing to think how they were made back thousands of years ago when it used to be the old city and capital. In that period there were over 10,000 temples in Bagan, around 2200 temples can be seen today, it would be impossible to see them all… although I wish I could!
When to visit?
October to March is the best time to visit Bagan as the rainy season has passed. This is the time of year that Hot Air Balloons run, if you are looking to do this it will set you back US$350 and I highly recommend Balloons Over Bagan.
On this trip we visited in August as we weren’t planning on going on the Hot air balloons and found the weather to be perfect. On our whole trip in Myanmar think it only rained once, and even then it was just a one hour thunderstorm and then the sun came back out! I personally think August is a great time to visit as its the end of low season so prices are much cheaper and Bagan is quieter. This means visiting some of the temples for sunrise or sunset feels more magical.
Where we stayed?
We arrived into Bagan at 10:30am which left the rest of the day to explore and check into our hotel. We decided to treat ourselves for this leg of the journey and decided to stay at the Aureum Palace Hotel and Resort.
Day 1 – Exploring the new surroundings
Once we checked in we just chilled out by the pool – how incredible does that look! The pool is an infinity pool that looks over some of the temples of Bagan. It is just so peaceful to look at the temples and be away from technology.
We had a snack by the hotel restaurant before exploring Bagan town.
Afternoon of day one, we explored the town and found a great tour to do on day 2, more to come shortly. This place also have us recommendations of the best temple to watch sunset. We headed over to Shwesandaw Pagoda at around 4pm to get a good spot as its meant to be one of the best temples to watch sunset.
After sunset we went back to town for some dinner at 7 Sisters restaurant which had come highly recommended and did not disappoint. They had gluten free options which would be great for those with intolerances and some interesting variations. For example I tried coconut rice for the first time there, it was super yummy too. The portions are generous in size so if you are a light eater I would recommend sharing a dish.
Day 2 – Bagan Bicycle Tour
We woke up super early so that we could see sunrise at Shwegugyi Temple which was incredible. There was only two other people there!
After sunrise we headed back to the hotel for a delicious buffet before heading on our bicycle tour with Grasshopper Adventures. Our host was Ye Ye and could not recommend it more – if you do anything in Bagan do this!
They pick you up from your hotel and take you to their shop to get set up on your bike with helmet, they also provide you with a ‘Grasshopper Adventures’ water bottle that you also get to keep at the end and stay hydrated during the day. We were doing the afternoon cycle and sunset cruise. As it was low season we ended up being the only people on the tour and as such they personalised the tour for our interests! We wanted to see a mixture of both villages and temples 🙂
We cycled through various villages and got to meet locals and understand what they made for a livelihood. Then we would see some temples and learn about the history. Part of the appeal was the host who is from Myanmar was able to share us all these stories. He also brought local snacks for us to taste during breaks as well which were really yummy 🙂
We finished the tour with a sunset cruise. Again we were the only people on the cruise and chatted to Ye Ye more. I love travelling and meeting people of all cultures and backgrounds. The cruise also had this amazing picnic with fruits cut in beautiful shapes and Burmese snacks. It was a wonderful end to a great day!
That concludes my wonderful 2 days in Bagan! I would do it all over again if I could! After the tour we went back to the hotel to relax and use the facilities before our next stop… Inle Lake and Yangon! Follow me on Instagram and Bloglovin’ as I will be posting these up soon!
See my snippets of 2018 travel here to get more ideas for your next holiday!