Challenge: Seeing ALL the Temples of Bagan ( in Burma)

As you are reading this, I am sitting in a silent meditation retreat, probably going out of my mind (silently). I’m writing this on Monday morning, from the beach in Koh Samui, trying to soak up every last bit of my regular, input-laden life that I can. This includes stuffing my face with Oreos and coffee while frantically trying to read to the end of the internets. That’s possible in an hour, right?!

I guess I’ll find out.

I realize it’s only a week and I’m being totally melodramatic, but I’m scared! Anyway, I’ll let you know how it goes when I get out. I imagine it’s going to be like–Megan vs. Herself: The World’s Most Boring Smackdown Ever.

Anyway, I recently spent a week in Burma and while I don’t have time to write much about it, I’m going to post some pictures here of my time in Bagan. This is an area that used to be (hundreds of years ago) hustling and bustling with activity. Now it’s farmland, abandoned temples, and touts trying to sell you sand paintings.

Still, biking around in the fields and climbing up to the top of 12th century temples to watch the sunrise is not something I can make fun of. It was definitely one of the highlights of my time in SE Asia.

Hello! Where come from? You buy sand painting?

I am being supremely lazy, so if you want to know more about Bagan, go to Wikipedia.

Some temples of Bagan.

Overview of some temples.

Some details of the temples.

We voluntarily woke up at 5 a.m. and 4:30 a.m. to bike out to see a sunrise. It was so peaceful; just us, the farmers, and their oxen. I’d go back in a second.

Final Score: 

Bagan: 1  Sarah, Melanie, Megan: 0

There are SO MANY TEMPLES.

p.s. Please be kind in the comments. I’m not going to turn them off while I’m gone. :)

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10 Comments

Filed under Awesome, Living Abroad, Trips

10 responses to “Challenge: Seeing ALL the Temples of Bagan ( in Burma)

  1. I love Burma, though I suppose that’s not really a cool or sane thing to say given the junta and all. But my month there last summer was one of my favourite months of my life. Seriously. We thought about moving there but decided that supporting the communist party of china indirectly was slightly less awful than supporting the Myanmar junta indirectly.

    Did you go to any of the food places I sent you in that post?

    PS Am betting you win the Megan v. Megan smackdown!

    • I think a lot of people love Burma, and, I don’t know, in my opinion, it’s okay to say you love the country and the people, but not the junta, right?

      YES, we went to some of the food places. The Indian and Italian places in Bagan–YUUUUUUMMMMMM. And Monsoon in Yangon. Mango sour? YES, PLEASE.

  2. I really, really, really can’t wait to read your post about the meditation retreat. I was looking into doing a Vipassana retreat, but I think my brain would explode. Please don’t let your brain explode, okay? I would be lonely on the Internets without you.

  3. carrie

    How did you do those photo collages? They are gorgeous, as are the pictures. NAMASTE! ;-)

  4. Jess

    Beautiful photos! And I second Carrie’s question – how do you make them collages??

    I am also thinking of you every day during my less challenging meditation practice :)

  5. Your pictures are lovely, and do much to capture the sense of age, skilled masonry, and the spirituality of these places.

    And often there is the contrast between the exteriors & interiors…with the inside corridors & rooms being less decorated, dark and mysterious.

    I really enjoy these ancient temples, and have not visited those in the Mae Sot area. Thanks for the tour.

  6. .Bagan also spelled Pagan on the banks of the Irrawaddy River is home to the largest area of Buddhist temples pagodas stupas and ruins in the world with many dating from the 11th and 12th centuries. It is estimated that as many as 13 000 temples and stupas once stood on this 42 sq km plain in and Marco Polo once described Bagan as a gilded city alive with tinkling bells and the swishing sounds of monks robes . In 1998 this village and its inhabitants were forcibly relocated a few kilometers to the south of Bagan forming New Bagan where you will find accommodation in its handful of cheap quaint clean hotels and religious centers..Despite the majesty and importance of Bagan Unesco has failed to include it on its because it says some temples were rebuilt in an un-historic way.

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