Updated: Mar2013
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About a millennium ago, King Anawrahta, Myanmar's unifier, brought the best builders from around his empire to establish a capital on the Ayeyarwady River. Two centuries of construction later, Bagan rivaled Cambodia's Angkor Wat in grandeur. But foreign invasions spurred the city's abandonment and, like Angkor, it was left to the mercy of the elements. In contrast to Angkor's jungle setting, Bagan's open spaces emphasises ones solitude. It feels surreal to bike up to an intricate stone pagoda, only to see that it is dwarfed by a forest of other even grander temples behind it. Or to bring out a flashlight, shining it into the darkness of an inner sanctum to gaze at an Uffizi-load of statuary and murals, with only ones' steps breaking the ancient silence.

This is without doubt, one of our traveller’s favourite places along the route. A great selection of restaurants with good food and without a doubt, the most scenic of places in Myanmar. Even if you dine at any of the Lonely Planet’s $$ restaurants! It would be so easy to spend a week here getting up in time for sunrise, returning to your hotel for breakfast or leaving with a packed-lunch for the day. Snoozing through the early afternoon after a tasty snack somewhere and then back out to chase the sunset; and with so many amazing places to view it, a week will fly.

One request though; please don’t join the throng of people that think it fit to climb religious monuments to get that “once in a life time” picture. This is history and this is Myanmar’s history. Don’t ruin it for the others. Take nothing but pictures, leave nothing but foot-prints and Kyats. Or in Elli’s case, paw-prints.
Nyaung U City Map
Accommodation (Nyang-U)
All room prices in this section are en-suite and the vast majority of the hotels in Bagan have Wi-Fi. From the bus-stop head into town and you will start seeing accommodation within a few minutes. Most places offer pretty much the same package for the same price, so it’s worth booking ahead if you want to get your first choice.

    Eden Hotel
Address: Main Road
Prices from: Dorm $9, Single $13, Double $30
Includes: breakfast, Wi-Fi, fan, en-suite
Tel: 061-60901 Mobile: 09 204 2064 Email:
Mixed reviews on this place but then that’s Bagan at the moment. Room rates have rocketed and the standards have not changed. Confirm your price if booking in advance.

    Golden Myanmar Guest house
Address: Main Road 
Prices from:  Single $15, Double $30
Includes: breakfast, Wi-Fi, AC, en-suite
Tel: 061-60901 Mobile: 09 204 2064 Email: 
Small and friendly reception area with breakfast served on a roof terrace.

    Inn Wa Guest House
Address: Main Road
Prices from:  Single $25, Double $30
Includes: breakfast, Wi-Fi, PC in reception, AC & ceiling fan. 
Tel: 061 60902/ 60849 Email: Web:
Another of the local hotels that have boomed their prices by over 60% in the last few months. If you book in advance, directly with the hotel, they will collect you from your point of arrival free of charge. That said we've had several reports where they have cancelled bookings without any prior notice leaving travellers waiting at points of arrival or arriving in the evening to find they don't have a room.

    Pan Cherry 
Address: Main Road (close to bus station)
Prices from: Single $10, Double $20, Triple $
Includes: breakfast, fan.  No Wi-Fi or AC
Tel: 061 600 75 Email: Web:
The owner doesn’t speak any English, but if you’re lucky his son will be around. A level beneath a lot of the hotels in the area.

    Shwe Da Z
Address: Main Road
Prices from: Single $, Double $20, Triple $
Includes: breakfast, Wi-Fi, AC
Tel: Email: Web:
A friendly place that smells of fresh paint (Oct2012). The owner doesn’t speak much English, but it’s on the main road pretty central to the town.
Note: They have a sister hotel in Inle Lake (Malew Thi) on the outskirts of the town which offers a discounted rate if you stay at Shwe Da Zi as well.

    Thante Hotel
Address: Main Road
Prices from: Single $32, Double $50, Triple $75
Includes: en-suite, breakfast, Wi-Fi, swimming pool,
Tel: 95 1966 4424 Email: Web:
Very spacious bungalow style room, with a bath in the bathroom (as well as a shower). Excellent buffet breakfast. Free Wi-Fi in reception, and the Wi-Fi occasionally worked in my room. There is a small swimming pool. Suzanna Clarke rated this as her favourite hotel in Myanmar. Online booking available via Agoda.
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Accommodation (Outer Nyang-U)
A short 5 minute cycle ride out of Nyang-U towards Old Bagan there are a few hotels that put you close enough to the first listed temples that you can easily walk to them for sunrise or sunset. There are also several restaurants near them.

    New Wave Guest House 
Address: Main Road
Prices from: Single $10, Double $20, Triple $24
Includes: breakfast, AC
Tel: Email: Web:
A pleasant enough place. Wi-Fi available at the restaurant next door.

    Winner Guest House 
Address: Main Road
Prices from: Single $7, Double $10, Triple $
Includes: breakfast, AC
Tel: Email: Web:
They only have double rooms and the pricing changes according to the number of occupants and if you require an en-suite bathroom.

Single Double Room Type
    7     10 Fan/ shared bathroom
    10    13 AC/ shared bathroom
    12    16 AC/ en-suite
    16    20 AC/ en-suite large room

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Eating and Drinking (Nyang-U)
    Cheri Land Kafe & Cake Shop - Wi-Fi
Address: Main Road
Prices from: Starters/ Sides 1,000 Ks, Pizzas 4-5,000Ks, Water 300Ks, 
Myanmar Beer 1,800Ks, draught 650Ks
Not 100% sure which is its real name, but the sign outside states “Kafe and Cake” and then in bigger print “Wi-Fi” and on the menu “Cheri Land”. They offer wood-fired pizza (you can see into the kitchen and we didn’t see one, and our pizza didn’t look like it’d been cooked in one either!), Kafe and cake (they didn’t have cake) and dinner. More of a cake-less coffee shop than a restaurant.

    Shwe Moe Restaurant
Address: Main Road
Prices from: Starters/ Sides 1,000 Ks, Mains 2,000Ks, Water 300Ks, Myanmar Beer 1,800Ks
With mains starting from 2,000Ks going up to 6,000Ks for a sea-food pizza, this is another place away from the Lonely Planet’s $$ Street. A Whole fish will cost from 3,000Ks, depending on the style of cooking. They also offer a very good selection of vegetarian dishes from 1,200Ks. 
    Weather Spoon’s
Address: Main Road
Prices from: Starters/ Sides 1,000Ks, Mains 2,000Ks, Water 300Ks, Myanmar Beer 1,700Ks
Managed by a young man called Spoon who studied for his hot-air balloon license in the UK. His objective is to offer good food at a reasonable price, and because of his name and time in England, he chose on Weather Spoon’s as a name. Offering European and Asian food. Generally quite busy because they offer good, fresh food at a very competitive price. If you haven’t tried a Myanmar curry, then go for either the chicken or the mutton; or there’s two of you one of each!
Bagan to Kalaw/ Nyuang She/ Taung Gyi
Prices vary slightly, but around 10,000ks per person is about right. Since the bus station is just off of the main road it is possible to organise your bus direct. Hotel pick-up is normally included in the price.  

If you are booking a bus to Nyuang She then confirm that it will take you to the centre. If you are then dropped off early, the driver should organise and pay for a local motorbike-taxi.

Bagan to Mandalay
Prices vary on the company that you use, but expect to pay between 6,500Ks and 7,000Ks.

    Horse & Cart Tours
A half day tour to should cost around 8,000Ks. They carry two “comfortably”. There are areas that they are not allowed to stop, so consider hiring a bicycle instead.

On-line booking at 
    Paya’s and Pagoda’s
If you’ve picked up a map from the airport, it’ll show you where most of the temples are. But even without a map, if you head along the main road towards Old Bagan you’ll find plenty of amazing sites to explore. You’ll no doubt be charged the $10 heritage fee by your hotel and presented with a ticket. The only places that this may be checked is at the main paya’s if you’re trying to get up them nearing sunset.
If you’re staying in Nyaung-U, don’t miss out on Shwezigon Paya in the late afternoon or early morning. Its long corridors make for fantastic photographs. You will get one or two locals offering to pose for a photograph for a donation; we’ll leave that choice to you.

    Sun-set Chasing
If you read the introduction to Bagan, you’ll have read our request not to climb the local temples. Instead, a spot that was recommended to us is just a little way out of Nyaung-U on the main road. Look out for a brown-wooden sign directing you to three smaller paya’s on the right-hand side of the road; Lawka Chanthar Paya is the first one listed. This is just before the first two major paya’s on the left-hand side. Take the next track on the right-hand side heading towards two newish looking paya’s. If you get here for around 5pm you see an amazing view. Check-out our Facebook Group pictures for a preview.

Local Information
    Bicycle Hire
Ever one Bike Hire
On the main road just up from the market, you’ll spot the bikes before the sign. They hire out at 1,000Ks a day (from 6am until 9pm). They have lots of bikes, so if you get a Puncture or have an issue, they will swap it out without any problem. If you’re renting for more than one day, if your hotel is okay to store it at night, then they allow you to keep it until you need to return it.

Weather Spoon’s Bar/ Restaurant
On the main road near the bus station, Spoon’s rents bikes out for 1,500Ks a day.

There are two banks in Bagan, both on the Anawrahta Rd, a few minutes’ walk from Inn Wa Hotel. Both offer currency exchange with no charge. Their rates can differ, so check before-hand. You’ll need your passport to exchange currency.

Kanbawza Bank (KBZ)
Main Road
Rates given under Exchange Rates.

Main Road
Rate of 844Ks to the US$

Mani -Sithu Market was open on the Sunday and closed on the Monday. 

  • Sidebar
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    Posted 3 Jul 2013, 03:14 by Elli Murr
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  • Myanmar Sidebar
    Free Shuttle Bus at Mandalay Airport
    A free shuttle bus has been introduced for AirAsia customers in Mandalay. This service provides a free bus transfer between Mandalay Airport to Mandalay Downtown and vice versa. 

    1. How much is the fare for the transfer bus? 
    It’s free for all AirAsia guest. 
    2. How do I get the free transfer? Who are entitled to the free service? 
    AirAsia guest can present their inbound boarding pass, flight itinerary and their passport. 
    Service is only available on actual date of the flight as specified on boarding pass 
    3. Where do I find the service? 
    At Mandalay Airport: Exit gate of Arrival hall 
    In Mandalay City: Street 79 near Mandalay Palace (between 26&27) 
    4. How long is the shuttle bus ride between Mandalay airport to downtown Mandalay? 
    Approximately 1 hour depending on traffic conditions.

    Posted 16 Jul 2013, 19:24 by Elli Murr
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  • Travel Guides
    Over 1,000 downloads of "A travellers Guide to Myanmar"

    We've had over 27,000 hits in just 7 months! For some, that's nothing, for the charities we support, approx. 2% of our visitors visit on.Which means all of our hard work is worth it. 

    Looks like we'll be publishing an update to "A Travellers Guide to Myanmar" in September ready for the new season. And already we have Peter and Anne from Balmain, Sydney Australia on board to give us updates for their pending trip in October.

    So we have "
    Fish out of Water" and "Powered by Noodles" and now "Cool for Cats" set to update us in Myanmar. Can you get any more up-to-date?

    Free guides and downloads.
    Posted 24 Jul 2013, 21:12 by Elli Murr
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Definition of Charity: 
"Generosity and helpfulness especially toward the needy and suffering"

This is all about giving something back to the people of the countries that we've visited, to thank them for the wonderful experiences that we've had. There are no charges for receiving information on this site, because this is about sharing the latest information and not making money. You'll also note, there are no pop-ups or sponsored links to businesses. So, please take the time to look at some of the charities that we've highlighted on our charities page, and if you want to "pay" for the information you've received, then look into some of these worthy causes. Otherwise we'd gladly accept any support to help keep this site alive.

You will be directed to an Email window. 
If not, then email: volunteer@

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  • Myanmar: The true land of smiles?

    Powered by Noodles

    "Trip report March 2013" 
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    Pia Regan
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    Cycling in Inle

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    Daniel Fisher returns to Inle to take to the bike and investigate the local temples, vineyard and villages. [more]


    Back again!
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    Martin Clarke's second trip to Myanmar in 6 months and once again we're getting hard facts with a few opinions. Useful and solid information. [more]


    Honeymooning in Myanmar?
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    We weren't at the wedding but we're really pleased that we could help with their honeymoon planing. Thanks for the report. [more]










    Yangon City Calling!

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    Wendy Merrett reflects on visiting Yangon again but without visiting the temples? [more]


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    Steve Lyons takes a cycle ride of off the beaten track to visit an orphanage. [more]


    18 Days

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    Suzanna Clarke shares her 18 days of solo travel with us from December 2012.[more]









    Biking in Bago

    "A day trip from Yangon to cycle around Bago."

    Daniel Fishers's first proper blog took that many hits we managed to talk him into writing another one for us.

    City Maps
    The map for Bago follows the route described above for cycling. And now the "map man" is back from Myanmar all of our others will be updated soon.

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    Join Martin Clarke and friends as they take to the waters of Inle Lake for a day of fisherman, gardens, temples and some lazy cats... [more]

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    Trekking from Kalaw to Inle.

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    Ruby Hood decides to walk to Inle rather than taking the bus? Two days and one night... [more]


    Posted 23 Jul 2013, 18:21 by Elli Murr
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  • A sample from our facebook page. Follow us for regular updates.

    Garden of Reflection,
    Chiang Mai, Thailand:
    There is no glory for a lazy person however good looking

    Krabi Thailand:

    Solitude and silent reflection seems to be moving with the times

    Almost Famous,
    Pai, Thailand:

    Toilet humour, bar humour and a great quiz.
    Posted 26 Jun 2013, 21:11 by Elli Murr
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  • Myanmar Charities: The Leaping Lemur Group
    There are no charges for receiving information on this site, because this is about sharing the latest information and not making money. That said, please take the time to look at some of the charities that we've highlighted beneath, and if you want to "pay" for the information you've downloaded, then look into some of these worthy causes.
    Elli xx

    The Burma Children’s Fund supports orphanages and pre-schools in various parts of Burma in order to provide shelter, health care and education for orphans and children. We will only support orphanages, clinics and pre-schools for infants and younger children where we know that the staff are dedicated and that the money they receive is spent on the children and for the direct benefit of the children. Children in Burma cannot control their own destiny and this is why our goal is “To Support their Future". [more] 

    Burma Campaign UK
     works for human rights, democracy and development in Burma.Burma Campaign UK is one of the leading Burma campaign organisations in the world. We play a leading role in raising awareness about the situation in Burma, and pressuring the international community to take action in support of the people of Burma. Founded in 1991, Burma Campaign UK is one of the leading Burma campaign organisations in the world. We play a leading role in raising awareness about the situation in Burma,  and pressuring the international community to take action in support of the people of Burma. [more]

     works with marginalised urban children and youth, their families and communities to become productive, independent citizens of their country. We do this by listening to and being guided by those who matter the most to us - the children and youth we work with everyday. Friends-International has been assisting marginalized urban children and youth across the world since 1994. We now run and support projects for these children and their families in Cambodia, Laos, Thailand, Indonesia, Honduras, Mexico, Egypt and Myanmar. Friends-International and its partners reach out to over 50,000 marginalised young people -particularly street children and youth – each year. We offer a range of comprehensive services as part of our holistic approach to assisting children and their families to improve their lives. [more]
    Compassionate Hands is a home-grown charity, founded by Snow Aye after the cyclone Nargis struck the southern delta region of Myanmar on 2nd May 2008. Since the start of Compassionate Hands, many people have volunteered to help realise various projects, ranging from emergency relief efforts after the Cyclone, to digging wells and helping children with AIDS. Many volunteers are from Myanmar itself, but also foreigners from other Asian countries, the United States and Europe are involved.... [more]
    Posted 27 Jun 2013, 20:17 by Elli Murr
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