by Daniel Opacki
Bagan is, or was, a timeless place in the world. The unpaved region where temples and structures constructed across centuries sit are without the common tourist traps. The best way to get around is by motorbike or bicycle. You can safely wander small paths through the brush and experience the minor structures, get away from the tours, meet locals hoping to meet you (yes, to sell things but they are laid back, not pushy) and enjoy the wonderful views not seen on websites or in brochures. The whole area is surprisingly small. Tour guide photo’s impress a vast expanse but you can rush through in one day and take in the views. Over two days you can relax alone on temples few people visit and spend time inside the dark caverns admiring the ancient drawings. Some locals will offer to show you the hidden places you’d never find so go with them! No matter the reason for your visit to Myanmar give yourself the gift of time and go to Bagan.