Bagan is one of the Asia’s most amazing ancient cities and the richest archaeological site in central Myanmar. Formerly known as Pagan, it was the capital of several ancient Burmese Kingdoms, and is currently nominated to become a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Located on the eastern banks of Irrawaddy River, the Bagan archaeological area, holds more than 2,200 out of the original 4,400 Buddhist monuments and temples tower over green plains.
The site covers an area of 42 sq.km containing well-preserved temples of the 11th-13th century. No two monuments are the same and all are highly original in design and conception. The structural techniques, similar to the gothic forms of Western cathedral architecture, were in advance even of contemporary engineering in Europe. Technologically daring in notion, and exquisite in execution, the splendor of these temples is best seen from a seat in a traditional horse and cart wagon. The environs of Bagan are Mount Popa and Pakokku, an unspoiled small town famous as a tobacco trading centre and for its weaving shops. Trekking is available on the nearby Mount Victoria National Park (Nat Ma Taung in Burmese), home of some of the world’s rarest bird species.