Bagan

Mandalay Region

Bagan is the most wondrous sight in Myanmar, if not Southeast Asia. Known as the city of four million Pagodas, Bagan (or Pagan as it used to be called) is the cradle of Myanmar civilization; the first capital of the once mighty Bamar Kingdom. Although its early history is shrouded in mystery, the chronicles recount that the city grew out of 19 villages.

The city’s “Golden Era” was between 1044 and 1287 during which time thirteen Kings left their signature on the area in the form of temples, Pagodas, Palaces and the introduction of Theravada Buddhism to the region and ultimately the country. As with most ancient civilizations, when the end came, it came abruptly with the brutal sacking of the city by Genghis Khan’s grandson, the enigmatic Kublai Khan. Its history unsure, all that is certain is that Bagan is a spectacular sight to behold. Unlike its more illustrious cousin, Angkor Wat, Bagan receives very little in the way of visitors making a visit to this ancient wonder doubly special.