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Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Myanmar, a destination to visit right now

One of the most visited places in Asia today is Angkor Wat in Cambodia. The temple complex fully deserves it's fame and is now flooded with tourists from all over the world.
Myanmar or Burma, a destination that was once avoided because of the political regime is now getting in the spotlight. Since the military began relinquishing more of its control over the government, the tourism is starting to grow even more rapidly and this country has a lot to offer.
I've started this article with a reference to Angkor Wat because I want to present the Burmese version of an ancient city: Bagan.
Bagan's prosperous economy built over 10,000 temples between the 11th and 13th centuries and the remains of over 2200 temples and pagodas still survive to the present day.
This is the reason why the Bagan Archaeological Zone is a main draw for the country's tourism industry.
Bagan, unlike Angkor Wat is filled with Budist places of worship and was of course developed by a different civilization being the capital of the Kingdom of Pagan, the first kingdom to unify the regions that would later constitute modern Myanmar.
I can think of two main reasons to visit Myanmar, and  Bagan in particular, right now: mass tourism is still not present at full scale and the temples are still well preserved, which is great considering there are many earthquakes hitting this part of the world.
Go there and enjoy an astonishing archaeological site not yet filled with tourists, it won't be like this for long.

The Mingalazedi Pagoda
The Mingalazedi Pagoda

The Lawkananda Pagoda
The Lawkananda Pagoda

Old Bagan Temples
Old Bagan Temples

The Pagodas of Bagan
The Pagodas of Bagan