Hurriedly scampering up to the 2nd floor of an old temple in the golden dusky light of a rapidly approaching sunset was the perfect introduction to Bagan’s magnificent landscapes. Sheer magic is the only way I can describe this first glimpse and it has to go down as one of those truly special moments in life.
The well known “Sunset” pagoda sat in the distance to the north crowded with tourists on its upper levels – that was enough for a mental note to avoid that place!
With so much to explore both inside and out unless you’ve got days and days to spare you will need to prioritise. Ananda temple has a wonderfully restored exterior and great architecture which means it just must be explored, it’s also considered to be the most spiritually important. The placement of the windows and size of the corridors allow for maximum cross ventilation and fantastic light in all the right places. The frescoes on the some of the walls and fading colours give off a fabulous sense of age and grandeur.
An enjoyable few hours can be had in the late afternoon exploring the area by foot, bike or horse cart.
Unfortunately I missed out on the quintessential Bagan balloon shot as I visited during off season. Take this as a warning…. balloons only run from October through until about March and should be booked well ahead.
I’ve already got it set in my mind that I’ll be heading back at some stage even if it is just for a balloon ride 🙂