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Myanmar culture is full of colourful legends and stories. For a better understanding of this aspect of local culture, spend a day discovering one of Bagan’s most famous legends.
The morning will begin with a guided explanation of the legend. Many years ago, King Anawratha was presented with a relic of the Lord Buddha. He placed it on the back of his sacred white elephant and set it free to roam Bagan. Four times, the elephant knelt to rest. Seeing this as an auspicious sign, King Anawratha then built a pagoda at each of these locations. According to local lore, if these four sites are visited in one day then any wish will be granted.
Before testing out this theory, head to Nyaung U’s morning market. Join local shoppers who come every day to buy the freshest vegetables, fruits and other items that are on sale.
Then it is time to start on the legendary path with a visit to Shwezigon, one of Bagan’s holiest sites. The gilded stupa-shaped pagoda became the prototype of the ‘typical’ Myanmar stupa. Learn how its design inspired kings to build similar structures throughout the country, including famous Shwedagon Pagoda. On the same compound is a small hall that houses an impressive collection of carvings representing the nat spirits. Make a short stop here to learn about this aspect of Myanmar spirituality.
The second site on the legendary path is Tu Yin Taung, a hilltop stupa located south of the main Archaeological Park. Drive up to the top of the hill, passing 500 statues of monks on the way. The stupa’s elevated location offers fabulous views of the surrounding plains, a unique perspective of Bagan and its surroundings.
Continue to Lawka Nandar, a riverside temple with a unique design: three octagonal terraces form a base upon which a bulbous stupa is located. There is a relic from the Lord Buddha housed inside, making Lawka Nandar a popular pilgrimage site for locals.
Take a break for lunch at a riverside restaurant before heading to the last of Anawratha’s four sites.
This last site, Tant Kyi Taung, is the most remote and sees few, if any, tourists. Travel by private boat across the Irrawaddy River. Then take a local pick-up truck to the hilltop temple where, it is believed that Buddha once visited. Enjoy spectacular views of the river and Bagan in the distance.
Having completed the four visits, make a wish and see if the legend holds true! Then return by boat to Bagan. (L)
Our services include:
– Transfers and excursion with private vehicle with driver
– Boat and pick
– Drinking water
Our services do not include:
– Bagan Zone Fee
– Meals other than mentioned
– Drinks and personal expenses
– Any other items not mentioned
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