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Read and rate Travel Journal Entries for Bagan, Myanmar

Feb 4, 2019 - Still in Bagan

Monday Feb 4th. Another day in Bagan started with a cultural show in a nearby village. The star of the show was a large decorated and colorful elephant (with 2 performers inside), with a group of dancers. Afterwards a visit to Gubyaukgyi Temple, a 13th century 'cave temple' with several features similar to a Hindu Temple. Burma is famous for its top quality lacquerware so this afternoon we visited a local workshop to see how it's all done. Each item takes about 5 months to complete as each of its 16 coats of lacquer has to dry in a stable...

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Feb 3, 2019 - Bagan

Sunday Feb 3rd. We have now arrived in Bagan, a very large city and thankfully the wi-fi is now working more efficiently. We have been able to upload a few days entries all in one hit. Bagan is a major centre for tourism and we have actually seen a lot more tourists. We started the day with a visit to Nyaung-U market to see the traditional ways of living. Bagan has over 4,000 temples or Pagodas over its area of only 16 Klm. We visited one of the largest and best preserved - Ananda Temple. We also stood in the midst of dozens of stupa's and...

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Mar 26, 2018 - Slow boat to Bagan

A day on a boat today as we travel to Bagan. Departed around 6.15am and arrived around 4pm, Boat had capacity of about 70 but there were only 15 travelling today, one of the advantages of not travelling peak season. Breakfast and lunch provided on the boat. We had one stop at a village about half way. They were making clay pots, using the local river clay.

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Mar 14, 2018 - Continuing upstream - part 3

Lois writing Our last entry finished with our activity for Tuesday morning. After our lunch and "rest hour", the activity director for the ship had several other crew members demonstrate some things that are indicative of the Burmese culture. First the head chef showed how to make ginger salad, and there was a handout with the recipe. Then another guy showed about 8 different ways to wear a longji, including as a vest with a hood, a backpack or an elephant trunk for playtime. Finally someone explained how to make and apply ThaNaKha, the...

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Mar 13, 2018 - On the river, part 2

Lois writing: At 5:30 on Monday morning March 12, the crew pulled up the gangplank from the jetty, and we were underway. The bulk of this river cruise heads upstream from Bagan to Mandalay, but first we headed south (downstream) for a couple of hours to visit the town of Salay. By 9 AM we were off on a walking tour of the village, a former British settlement that has many old buildings from the colonial era. Some have been restored to their former "glory". As we pass by lots of villagers going about their daily business, we are really...

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Mar 11, 2018 - River trip on the Irrawaddy, entry #1

On board the RV Orient Pandaw while docked in Bagan (2 days) Lois writing first: On Saturday morning, March 10, we began our journey north from Yangon. There was an early morning flight (a bit over an hour) to the city of Bagan, Myanmar on Air KBZ. The airport is a 15 minute drive from the river cruise boat, but since it was still quite early in the day, we made a couple of stops along the way. The first one was a local market, which had lots of narrow aisles, and a wide variety of stalls, mostly selling foodstuffs, but also the...

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Feb 23, 2018 - Balloon ride, Market visit and more temples

Free day but no lie-in! Dawn balloon ride over Bagan Drove to local market - very friendly experience and I bought a top to wear with my ‘Longhi’. Continued to drive round local temples and had a roadside coffee. Back to the hotel - swim and sit. Still a weak WiFi connection, even in such a smart hotel. Dinner under the stars near the hotel and with views of pagodas.

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Feb 22, 2018 - From the new capital to the old

We were escorted by police in convoy around the capital city of Nay Pyi Daw. We drove along wiide roads, manicured central reservations, decorated roundabouts and along the 10 lane highway in front of the Parliament. It did not take long to leave the shining buildings of the capital for the simple villages of the Myanmar countryside. Bullock carts were the order of the day and our drive up to and across the central plateau was a photographer’s dream. The rural people have very little in the way of material possessions, but they smile and...

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Feb 20, 2017 - Bagan

Hey, I'm so sorry for the delay but we've been travelling. Yesterday we left Yangon to go to and ancient village, Bagan. "During the kingdom's height between the 11th and 13th centuries, over 10,000 Buddhist temples, pagodas and monasteries were constructed in the Bagan plains alone, of which the remains of over 2200 temples and pagodas still survive to the present day." -Wikipedia That's why we came here for. To see these pagodas and temples. We've seen quiet a few of them, but there are lots of them closed as Bagan is located in...

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Nov 30, 2016 - The toughest ride

Sunday was tough…. This was the real challenge of the cycling trip… we were up the early as we had a long ride ahead of us (comparatively to the other days), so a quick breakfast and we were on our way by 7,15am…. We had been warned that the ride got steeper and steeper as it went along, this didn’t bode well when my legs were grumbling by kilometre 7! We made our way through little towns and villages, as we moved further from the town we had stayed in we found ourselves in more and more remote locations. It was so lovely as we passed so...

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Nov 2, 2016 - Bagan (Bagan Archaeological Zone)

Our second stop in Myanmar was the ruins of medieval Bagan, nowadays officially known as the Bagan Archaeological Zone. The ruins are scattered over an area of roughly 26 sq. miles. An estimated 2,200 temples, pagodas, monasteries (kyaung), and other religious structures rise above the plains here. Them and many more were built between about 1000 - 1300 AD. Of course it took us some doing to get there. Our plane left Yangon at 6 in the morning so we had to be at the airport by 5, which meant we needed to leave the hotel at 4:30, so the wake...

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Oct 15, 2016 - Balloons over Bagan

Saturday, Oct 15. These early mornings are killing me! We were up at 4:30am to be in the lobby by 5am for our ride to the hot air balloon area. We are flying with Oriental Balloons and they picked us us promptly. It took about 20-25 mins to drive to our take off area. We were hoping for a sunrise flight but there were some dark clouds so the crew kept putting off the start time until they felt it was safe. We were fortunate that the clouds moved on; they'd cancelled yesterday's flight. While we waited, we sat at a table set up in the field...

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