3 Days in Bagan, Myanmar - Shawn Walters Photography - Life and My Lens


In Bagan we spent three nights. Upon landing we went straight to the markets and saw where everyone in Bagan buys all their goods. It was such a sight to see. Everything from plants to clothes to grains to turkeys were available here. Then we proceeded and checked out of some of the temples. And there so many to see.

We then went to the hotel to relax until sunset. Then we explored some more temples around sunset.



The following day we woke up early to catch the hot air balloons flying over the temples at sunrise. And it was spectacular. One of my favorite places experiences in Myanmar!

Then we explored the town and went to the markets again and relaxed by the pool.

The final day we went to Mount Popa, a National Park in rural Myanmar about 1.5 hours from Bagan. I have to say I didn’t care for it at all and would go so far as to recommend doing something else instead. Maybe taking a horse carriage ride for a few hours as you explore temples. Mount Popa was filthy. There were hundreds of monkeys running around and as you can imagine a lot of feces as well. By the way, you’re barefoot...and stepping in it. I suppose to make matters worse, the views at the top are nothing special (to me at least). It was by far our least favorite thing we did in Myanmar.

Overall Bagan was so much fun - especially exploring the temples, watching the hot air balloons and checking out the markets.











Tharabar Hotel

Fantastically located hotel with only a one minute walk to the Tharabar gate of the temples. Everything was top notch. The restaurant food and presentation were great. Service was exceptional. Average prices for meals were about $14 USD, and wine/beer about $8 USD. They refilled free filtered water in the room so you never had to buy water if you didn’t need to.

The pool and dining area are combined and at night time it’s a magical space with glowing lanterns hanging from the trees throughout the property. The pool was not heated and the hot tub seemed to not be working. I’m guessing during the very hot summer season you wouldn’t need either, but when we went both options would have made the stay even more enjoyable.

The rooms were a great size with a private courtyard out French doors. The beds were fantastic and very comfortable. We put the two twins together to form a king.

The breakfast which was included in our stay was great. There was an omelet station, espresso and coffee, pancakes and a variety of other offerings.

You can walk out the front door and there are horse carriages available for about $13/hr which can’t be beat and is highly recommended.

When we went there was a festival going on that they warned us about as being loud, but it was never disturbing to us and in fact was nice to see an event that wasn’t catering to tourists.

WiFi was rather slow and the reception is really only usable in the lobby. It somewhat worked by the pool and almost never worked in the room. I’m guessing that could depend on the room you’re staying in.

You can change currency at the front desk for no additional exchange fee which was nice. There was nothing they were not eager to help you with.

When you’re in Bagan, you have to ride a hot air balloon or at least see them flying from one of the temple terraces. It really is a spectacular sight at sunrise.

I’d definitely recommend all coming to Bagan to stay at this property. If for no other reasons than the great location, excellent pool and friendly staff. Visit the Shangri-La online @ http://www.tharabargate.com/
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