The Best of Bagan
Beautiful; Breathtaking; Blissful – just a few words to describe the indescribable Bagan.
We were fortunate enough to stay here for 5 stunning sunrises and 4 amazing afternoon naps.
Our 7 Best Spots in Bagan:
1) Maha Zedi Pagoda
This big brick pagoda – just outside Old Bagan – is free to explore and offers a 360 view of Bagan.
2) Low Ka Oushang
Or the Lawkashaung View Point (as seen on the Maps.Me App). This was our absolute favourite spot in Bagan! Thanks to an awesome blog post on ‘Bagan Sunrises’ by @thewholeworldisaplayground, we discovered this GEM. We recommend coming here in the afternoon for some peaceful solitude. We were alone here for hours (in the height of peak season).
But more importantly, come here for a slightly busier but insanely beautiful sunrise.
3) The local San Kabar Restaurant:
For only 1500 Kyat – this was the best sweet and sour pork/chicken we have EVER had!
4) Shwe San Daw Pagoda
This is the most popular sunrise spot in Bagan. We can definitely understand why. It has incredible views of the hot air balloons as they rise over endless fields of pagodas and stupas.
On the other hand – watching the sunrise in Bagan is meant to be a very calming and even reflective moment. This was not. We spent the morning standing behind a row of busy tourists and even got hit a few times by the frantic selfie sticks. It was beyond busy. We got here at 5:45 (an hour before sunrise) and we were too late. You need to be here at 5am if you want to get a front row spot.
For us personally, that level of crowds before our first cup of coffee wasn’t exactly a high moment. But gosh, that sunrise – it’s hard to complain!!
5) The River Bar:
The Ayeyarwaddy River offers the perfect view to sit back and enjoy an ice cold beer.
Travel tip: Don’t be that person that cracks open a beer on a Buddhist Pagoda.
6) Dhamma-Yan-Gye Pahto
This is definitely one of the largest ruins out of the 2200 temple structures that occupy Bagan. But what lies inside is truly worth visiting! It is very close to the main Shwe San Daw pagoda.
7) Secret Sunrise Spot
Okay we were wrong. This is our favourite spot! The one morning we got hopelessly lost while driving around in the dark searching for a sunrise spot. A local man came to our rescue and casually told us to follow him. Unfortunately this pagoda was not on any map or on the Maps.Me App so we have no idea what it’s called – just search for the Maha Bodi Pagoda and then look directly next to it. This pagoda is very steep and tall – meaning people cannot stand or sit in front of anyone else – only below or above. This meant we could sit down, spread out and enjoy the incredible view ahead.
Watch Our 2 minute GoPro Video from our Best in Bagan
Our Top Tips:
1) Explore in the day time too – the sunrise and the sunsets are magical. But don’t miss out on the day time exploring!! Why?
a) You can actually see where you are going.
b) The light allows you to explore inside the temples which are often just as beautiful.
b) You are not in a mad rush against the sun to find the best spot.
c) It is almost 90% less crowded.
2) Hire an e-bike – they cost between 5000 – 7000 Kyat per day.
3) Pack warm clothes – although its extremely hot in the day, the mornings before sunrise are freezing!
Looking for accommodation in Bagan, click on the below link for the best deals: