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// APRIL 2016
Where the Past Meets the Present
Yangon
Bagan
Bagan
Mandalay
Inle Lake
Yangon
Bangkok
Thessaloniki
Istanbul
Bangkok
He Ho
Nyaungshwe
Nga Phe Chaung Monastery
He Ho

Bagan


2nd of May 
Road aligned by 500 monk statues!!! 

We started our day by visiting the Tu Yuan Taung (hill top stupa), at the top of a hill, to the eastern part of the Park of Bagan.
While approaching the temple, we saw 500 statues of monks which align the road and when we arrived at our destination, we enjoyed the beautiful vies to the surrounding valleys from above



Preparation of offerings

We returned to modern Bagan, very near the river, so as to visit the Lawka Nanda Pagoda, which was constructed by King Anawrahta. A tooth of Buddha is kept somewhere deeply inside the Pagoda.  

Our tour guide was chatting with the locals, so as to give as the chance to learn things, to get a glimpse of the way they live and to take photos.

We saw the way they prepare their offerings. We also learnt how to knock the ceremonial bell, accordingly to the ritual, from 3 to 5 times. 

 


Admiring each other!!!

We saw people from several ethnic minorities with their characteristic “longyi” , the sheet of cloth that is worn around the waist by men and women too, selling their products. 

We met women of the Pa-O Hill tribe, with their black dresses and their colorful turbans (pink, red or orange) and eventually we took photos of ourselves and a few youngsters by the river.

 

 

Here, I must say that something about my hair, my clothes, my image in general resulted to their enthusiasm, as far as them being photographed with me.

They didn’t seem to be so excited with Christos, though.

This kind of enthusiasm I noticed on our tour guide too.

Right from the start, he was looking at me with great admiration and he was not even trying to hide it. 

Miss Eleni was the way he was addressing me and he was repeating it so often, as if he was really enjoying hearing it. That eventually resulted to us smiling and looking at each other knowingly any time he was saying it.

His admiration became enthusiasm when he found out that I and Christos were both medical doctors.
And at that point he shared with us photos of his children and information about kids, grandkids and all his family.

His genuine joy for accompanying us during our trip, his friendly approach and his efforts to please us were so obvious, that we felt really wonderful during the days we spent with him.
Our experience became even more colorful, I must say.


Sailing in Irrawaddy River

We continued our tour to Manuha Temple (mum King temple) with the Buddha’s reclining statue entering Nirvana.  

 


 

Next, we visited the local  Lacguerware work shop, where we had the chance to learn more about the traditional art of craftsmen and to admire the unique and beautiful products. 

We return to our hotel for the siesta time and in the afternoon we embarked on a boat which with we sailed in Irrawaddy River.
We were practically mesmerized by watching the moments of daily life there, with the fishermen, the boats, the villages by the river and the countless temples, until we reached the point of exiting the boat with destination to Kyauk Gu Umin  (cave temple).

 

 

We walked into a magical landscape, towards cave temple  and inside the softly lit shrine we saw exquisite carvings, telling Buddha’s stories about his life. We also saw numerous alcoves for meditation. 
 


We returned to the boat and sailed back to Bagan, while enjoying a superb sunset, shipping down some tea. 

 


It was impossible for me, within all this tranquility, not to recall that Bagan is considered equal to Angkor Wat (in the River Siem Reap of Cambodia).
As it faces Irrawaddy River, with its 5000 temples and stupas, which tell everything about the historic and religious past of the country, in the homonymous valley which is devoted to the spirits of the nature, it is certainly an amazing outdoors museum and a Buddhist religious center too.   

The ancient city of Bagan is unique not only for its countless religious shrines, but also for the amazing architecture which with they are all built.
Moreover great was their contribution for the designing of most of the temples in Burma. The shape and the construction of each building are of great importance for the Buddhists. Every element has its own spiritual meaning. 


What a pity

What a pity really, that, regardless of the grandiose and the great historic meaning of Bagan, UNESCO never will include it, within its list of Monuments of Universal Heritage, since the restorations of the buildings were not done in the proper historic way.
Nevertheless, the area is no doubtfully extremely impressive and atmospheric.    

On our way back, we asked from Mr Tar to let us in the village, so as to walk on our own till the hotel.
We found some improvised benches, where meat was grilled. Along with some others, we made our order and waited for it to be prepared. 

 


We tried everything, while everybody was applauding cheerfully and then returned to our hotel, filled with all those wonders that we had seen during the day. 

Country: Myanmar (Burma)
Date: 2016
Route: Myanmar (Burma)
Cities: Yangon, Bagan, Bagan, Mandalay, Inle Lake, Yangon, Bangkok
Duration: 8
Difficulty:
Population: 54.704.285
Rating:
comments
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comments
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Country: Myanmar (Burma)
Date: 2016
Route: Myanmar (Burma)
Cities: Yangon, Bagan, Bagan, Mandalay, Inle Lake, Yangon, Bangkok
Duration: 8
Difficulty:
Population: 54.704.285
Rating:
comments
VIEW
Country: Myanmar (Burma)
Date: 2016
Route: Myanmar (Burma)
Cities: Yangon, Bagan, Bagan, Mandalay, Inle Lake, Yangon, Bangkok
Duration: 8 days
Difficulty:
Population: 54.704.285
Rating:
comments
VIEW