TOP 10 Temples in Bagan Myanmar: With thousands of well-preserved temples in Bagan, it is hard to choose which ones to visit. In this video you will see my 10 favorite ones. You will have to purchase an archeological site pass for 25.000 kyat to explore the greatest temples. Many were damaged by earthquakes and are being restored.
One of the best ways to get around is by scooter, but you can also opt for a bike or horse cart. When we were there, it was prohibited to climb the larger pagodas, but some man made hills provide great viewing points. Here is the TOP 10 temples in Bagan Myanmar that ever tourist should visit.
TOP 10 Temples in Bagan Myanmar
Bagan is an ancient city and it is the World Heritage Site recognized by a UNESCO. This city is most popular tourist destination for people across the world, located in the Mandalay Region of Myanmar. From the 9th to 13th centuries, the city was the capital of the Bagan Kingdom, the first kingdom that unified the regions that would later constitute Myanmar. Read all about the TOP 10 Temples in Bagan Myanmar now.
#1 Ananda Patho:
Located just outside the walls of old Bagan, this is the best example of a traditional pagoda in old Bagan style. The temple has a perfect cruciform layout and the four entrances lead to huge Buddha images, one for each wind direction. The giant size footprints near the entrance are said to belong to Buddha. This is the most visited pagoda by tourists, locals and lots of vendors. If you want to escape the hawkers, take a look around the outside of the temple with great views of the terraced roof.
#2 Shwesandaw Paya
Meaning golden holy hair. It is believed that the pagoda contains one of Buddhas sacred hair relics. The white pyramid shaped pagoda with a circular stupa is located in old Bagan. The hti, or umbrella shaped top collapsed during an earthquake in 1975 and can still be seen lying on the ground beside the temple.
#3 Shwezigon Paya
“Mirror pagoda”. As a prototype of Myanmar stupas, the circular gold leaf decorated bell shaped stupa is surrounded by many smaller ones. It is impressive due to its size and golden terraces. It is said to contain a bone and tooth of Buddha and nowadays it functions as a pilgrimage site The Omniscient.
#4 Thatbyinnyu Paya
This is the highest temple in Bagan, reaching more than 60 meters high. The white terraces lead to the golden hti. Built in 1144, this is one of the earliest two storey temples in Bagan. Apart from the impressive outside, inside you will find the cavities without plaques of the Jataka, stories from Buddhas past lives. It is unclear why, but people think the pagoda has been abandoned before finishing.
#5 Sulamani Paya
Built in 1181, this temple is also known as the “Crowning Jewel”. The temple is built in another style with more interior light and harvests some of the best frescos. These decorations are still well preserved. The buildings brickwork is one of the best in Bagan and the gateways are very impressive! This temple is well worth your visit.
#6 Dhammayangyi Paya
Dhammayangyi Paya is the largest temple in old Bagan and is famous for its cruel history. Legend has it that king Naratha built the temple to atone for his sins, as he killed his father and brother to gain access to the throne. He is said to have insisted that the bricks fitted neatly together and workers who failed to do so, got their arms chopped off. You can still see the remains of the arm sized holes in the stones near the entrance.
#7 Buphaya Paya
“Pumpkin Pagoda”. Built near the waterfront, this is one of the completely restored Pagodas in Bagan. In 1975 the original temple collapsed into sea as a result of the earthquake. It has been rebuilt and although the original one was made of brick with lots of decorations, the new one is a concrete structure that is gilded. The views over the Irrawaddy River are stunning.
#8 Leimyethna Paya
Temple of four faces. The pagoda is built on a platform with the doors facing 4 sides. As one of the fine examples of the late Bagan style, this pagoda provides a bright interior with some fine murals.
#9 Dhammayazika Paya
This impressive brick stone pagoda was built in the 12th century and is topped with a golden bell shaped dome. The temple is special due its pentagonal layout. Where the usual temples have a square layout with an image of a previous Buddha on each side, this temple made some room for the future Buddha that yet has to appear on earth.
#10 Payathonzu Paya
Which literally means “The three Stupas”. This temple is located on the plains in the direction of Nuaung U and is of particular interest as the three temples are joined together by narrow passages. The frescoes inside are immense and well preserved. However, the meaning of these murals is not yet completely understood.