Somes historical places to visit in Myanmar
Myanmar is a paradise if you are interested in history, pagodas, temple and Buddhism (but not only). You will be able to discover archeological sites, pagodas that are not only historical places, but also real living places, used every day by Myanmar people (and if you like to discover ethnic groups, Myanmar has 137 ethnic group for you to discover).
Obviously, you have Bagan, but in every small village, if you walk around, you will meet people, discover market, old monastery and pagodas, unique collections of Buddha statues or furniture.
Everywhere you will have a very warm welcome.
Arakan state and Mrauk U
Mrauk U is a city located in Arakan state, in the western part of the country, not so far from Bangladesh. It is an archeological site, like a small Bagan but the architecture is totally different, the surroundings are different and the access by boat ( 4/6 hours) make the entire journey a very nice experience.
You need 5 days from Yangon if you want to visit Mrauk U at a normal pace, 1 day to go, 1 day to come back. Access is mainly by plane to Sittwe and then by boat to Mrauk U.
You may also come by road from the southern part of Arakan (Ngapali) or from Magway. Roads are now in good condition, but security (2018) is not very good. We do not recommend you to go to Mrauk u by road.
Boat on the river going to Mrauk U
Bagan is THE place you must see in Myanmar (along with Shwedagon in Yangon. This is a huge archeological place located along the Ayerwaddy river in the central plain of Myanmar. Bagan is extremely important in Myanmar history (golden age) and it is still a very active Buddhist place for pilgrimage, but also for day to day activities.
You should stay at least two full days in Bagan, better if you can stay three days. We strongly recommend using a bike or an electric bike to visit Bagan (in April, May, air con car is also a good idea).
: Monsoon period or the end of the monsoon. End of September, October and November are clearly the best months to visit Bagan (end of October is the best).
In April, May, there is almost no tourist but it is hot, very hot (40 C° and above).
In winter (December, January), you will have very photogenic fog in the plain of Bagan, with the top of the pagodas emerging from the mist. Best time to make a balloon flight.
Bago - Golden Rock- mawlamyine - Hpa An - Thaton
Buddhism (and monks) literally landed from Sri Lank near Thanton, a city located at 3 hours drive, South East of Yangon. All the area around Yangon, Bago, Hpa An and Mawlamyine are very important for Myanmar history and Buddhism in general. You will find superb pagodas, Buddhist cave and a countryside quite different than in another part of Myanmar.
Allow 4 - 5 days to visit this area from Yangon.
Monywa - Hpo win Taung
Hpo Win Taung is an amazing troglodyte site located on the east shore of the Ayerwaddy river, between Mandalay and Bagan. It is a totally unique place that you must discover.
For us, the best way to travel (in 1 night 2 days) from Mandalay to Bagan is to go via Hpo Win Taung and Monywa (unless you absolutely wants to take the tourist boat on the river).
A part of the huge Shwedagon pagoda complex in Yangon
Thanks to Kipling, Mandalay name is mythical.
In Mandalay, and especially in the formers royal capital located around Mandalay, you will find huge monasteries, pagodas, artisans.
This is a place of very high historical importance, but it is also now a quite big, dusty city.
If you like nature, countryside, quiet place, you should probably focus on Inle Lake, trekking of the Chin Hills or other places in Myanmar.
Village, countryside, Ethnic groups
We always recommend to our customers to take their time, to use our car and guide to stop where they want, whenever they want and go for a walk in a village, in a field, in a place they like, just to wander.
You will meet the people, they will welcome you in their home, at the monastery, and most of the times you may discover beautiful monasteries, Buddha collection or simply local people.
This is the best way to discover Myanmar. No need to do one-day trekking, just a 30 minutes’ walk in a small village along the way. You will be amazed.
Golden rock, south east of Yangon