So recently I solo traveled to Myanmar and ended up living in Bagan as an ex-pat! It is fair to say, I been eating a lot of yummy Burmese food and spending most of my time watching the best sunsets in Bagan.
On saying that, I want to help others to come and enjoy this beautiful place too which is why I am going to share travel tips to Bagan and 3 days in Bagan itinerary. These 3 full days itinerary will cover everything you need to know before you go to Bagan, Myanmar. So, let’s begin Day 1 and I will post Day 2 and Day 3 separately and link them along with the post.
3 days in bagan itinerary
- 3 days in bagan itinerary
- Travel Tips to Bagan
- 1. Where to buy the entrance ticket?
- 2. How to get around Bagan?
- 3. Where to stay in Bagan?
- 4. Where to book the cheapest flight to Myanmar?
- Day 1 of 3 days in Bagan itinerary
- 1. Visit Ananda Temple, Mingala Zedi Paya (or Blessing Stupa), and Lunch
- 2. Watch the best sunsets in Bagan
- 3. Chill at Fantasy Jetty Bar
- 4. Eat at Ji Harmony Restaurant
- 5. Go Stargazing / Sky Gazing
- Find out how to spend Day 2 of 3 days bagan itinerary and Day 3.
Travel Tips to Bagan
Okay let’s clear something first, of course, you can stay longer than 3 days in Bagan but keep in mind, the entrance ticket to Bagan Archaeological Zone is valid for 3 days only. If you want to stay longer, you would have to buy another ticket. It costs 25,000 kyats for 3 days. You could probably get away with an expired ticket but officers are in random areas checking the validity of entrance ticket and fines are heavy!
So usually people stay 3 days in bagan which is actually a good amount of time to explore Bagan and find your favorite temples and pagodas. Tickets used to be valid for 5 days though but since the earthquake that happened last few years, they have changed the rules. Always remember to carry this ticket on your purse/wallet as you don’t know when you would have to show them!
1. Where to buy the entrance ticket?
As soon as you arrive in Bagan, you will be stopped at the entrance gate of town for the payment. Make sure you have Kyat, as I don’t think they accept Master or Visa yet!
Something worth mentioning here is that there is old Bagan and new Bagan! Old Bagan is mostly the Bagan Archaeological Zone that requires a valid entrance ticket but New Bagan doesn’t. So if your accommodation is in New Bagan it would only take about 5 mins on an e-bike to get to the temple area.
Bagan – It is an ancient city in central Myanmar (formerly Burma), southwest of Mandalay
Currency – Kyat
Language – Burmese, hardly anyone spoke English except the hotel staffs
Hello – Mingalabar
Thanks- Kyay Zuu Tin Par Tal
If you missed it, watch the quick videos here -> “Myanmar” stories on Instagram.
2. How to get around Bagan?
I recommend discovering Bagan by hiring a bicycle, e-bike or a scooter from your hotel, hostel or shops around town. 8000 kyats for 2 days is a bargain! If you fancy, private car hiring is also available.
3. Where to stay in Bagan?
If you want to save some money, open a new Airbnb account with a new email address to get this $76 Airbnb discount for your first booking.
I booked the Kumudara hotel in Bagan via Airbnb. Decent wooden decor but beautiful window view. I am not sponsored by them but I genuinely liked the area and the hotel. However, food wasn’t that great but there is a number of restaurants nearby. The best thing about this hotel was – you could see temples from the balcony, pool and even from the dining area! And the cherry on top was they maintain one of the nearby temple and guests can come and go for sunrise and sunsets without a crowd! How good is that!
4. Where to book the cheapest flight to Myanmar?
Check out ways to book the cheapest fares here or here. but if planning and booking your trip is a hassle, let me help! Contact me now.
Day 1 of 3 days in Bagan itinerary
1. Visit Ananda Temple, Mingala Zedi Paya (or Blessing Stupa), and Lunch
If you took the overnight bus from Rangoon (btw it’s 1900 Kyat p/p), you should arrive at Bagan around 7 am. After the shower, a bit of rest, coffee, and some breakfast. It is time to hire a bicycle or e-bike and start exploring this beautiful area. You can tell Ananda Temple from afar because of it’s shiny half golden look. Ananda means – Bliss in the Hindi language and this beautiful temple is the mix of Hindu and Burmese style.
I also visited Mingala Zedi Paya (or Blessing Stupa), Gubyaukgyi temple and more temples. Read this post to know which pagodas and temples are worth visiting. Then, for your lunch, I suggest Black Rose Restaurant. Although it is located on the side of a dusty road, food was good. I had Thai curry with rice and Papaya Smoothie. It’s a good idea to let the staff know if you want ice in your drink because mine came without it and the warm smoothie wasn’t particularly enjoyable.
2. Watch the best sunsets in Bagan
As the hotel maintained one of the temples, I decided to check it out for sunset! Nobody was there and it was a special feeling to be surrounded by thousands of ancient temples and pagodas. I also found out the ballooning season is short in Bagan, typically running from mid-October through mid-March, when the winds are calmer and the air is cooler. So, time your trip accordingly if you really want to be on it.
3. Chill at Fantasy Jetty Bar
I love finding little gems like this! You can also do a boat cruise from here or just chill and watch the sunsets. Drinks and basic food available. Luckily I met some locals and tried “sky wine” which is called “happy wine” in Vietnam and basically is a local alcoholic beverage either made by rice or barley. Sky wine had a very strong smell and 2 sips were enough for me! Let me know in comments if you have tried it!
4. Eat at Ji Harmony Restaurant
As you must have read in my guide to Kalaw, I like to try authentic food from the area I’m traveling in. So, I was excited when I got the chance to have dinner at a local place. Ji Harmony restaurant was a little hard to find and they don’t speak English. So, this is what you do – The idea is to pick what you want from the BBQ station at the front and they will bring it to you on the table once ready. Order beverages as you wait.
5. Go Stargazing / Sky Gazing
If drinking till late in the pub isn’t your vibe then, perhaps stargazing might be! I find Sky gazing connects us to the vast, expansive, clear, open, space of awareness. Plus, it is a perfect time to try Astro/night photography.
Find out how to spend Day 2 of 3 days bagan itinerary and Day 3.
What I used to take these photos:
Canon PowerShot G7 X Mark II Digital Camera
This has been my favourite Camera so far. I love how my pictures come out crisp and colourful. It also has a screen which is useful when vblogging. You can check out what I meant on my Instagram which is here.
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This is the good old Go pro that I take with me everywhere. I recommend it because it is small, lightweight and waterproof. I have had made many memories with this trusted item and looking forward to more.
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I have been using SanDisk since my first camera which was back in 2009. They build quality memory cards. I recommend getting at least two, just in case something happens to one of them.
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Let me know in the comments if you:
- have any questions about Day 1 of 3 days in Bagan?
- Find out how to spend Day 2 of 3 days Bagan itinerary and relaxing Day 3 is here
- Where to watch the best sunsets in Bagan? With best sunrise temples too!
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54 thoughts on “3 days in Bagan Myanmar – Day 1”
What a spectacular place! I noticed that you said it’s 25000 kyats for 3 days. Is that equivelant to $16 USD? I looked it up but wasn’t sure I got it right. I would love to experience the sunrise and sunset here.
I’m so glad you were finally able to go there! It looks absolutely gorgeous. I must say, I might have had a little problem digging into that fish in a stick hahaha.
Bagan sounds beautiful. It sounds like you were in a great location with your hotel. Stargazing in Bagan seems wonderful.
I am going to Myanmar next month but this time only to Yangoon. I have heard so much about Bagan and will certainly include in my next trip to Myanmar. Thanks for sharing all the tips and information on Bagan. Not sure should I do the hot air balloon?
Myanmar’s temples are beautiful. I love the sunrise and sunset photo you capture. It looks so dreamy!
Great post-Anna! We actually have the plan to visit Myanmar later this year and of course, Bagan is also on the list! We will definitely make use of this itinerary 🙂 Love your photos as well in this post!
lovely write up, so did u visit a lot of temples in those three days, is photography allowed everywhere? what are the rituals that are followed in the temples , would love to maybe plan a visit someday
I’ve never been to Myanmar, but I do have a bucket list, so I’m definitely adding this place!
Bagan is such a beautiful place. Went there last December and fell in love with it. And the food is definitely a hit. We watched the sunset from over the Bulethi and it was magical.
I would love to travel Asia especially less visited country like Myanmar. Also like your photography, how do you edit them?
The photos are everything. How did you enjoy looking at the fish while eating it. The food looked delicious. It is so wonderful to read about the customs of other countries and become so involved in someone else’s journey
Bagan seems amazing, I wasn’t aware of this beautiful place. Thank You for all the information. 🙂 I so look forward to watching the night sky from here.
Visiting Myanmar and especially Bagan are at high on my bucket list. I can’t wait to visit and photograph it during sunset and sunrise.
I’ve never actually considered visiting Myanmar, but I think your wonderful itinerary may have changed my mind!
I have never been in this place but I would love too. I would like to see their beautiful spots, meet their locals and taste their local foods.
What a cool place to visit. The food certainly looks interesting.
I just ordered the G7 x mark ii! I am really excited for it to come in.
The temples looks huge! Stunning and like it would be very peaceful. That fish also looks delicious. I think three days is a good amount of time for an area. Can always come back another time to visit a different temple.
WHOA! Absolutely beautiful!! I totally want to visit the temple. Thank you for sharing such pretty sites!
A balloon ride in Bagan is high on our travel wishlist.
Sounds like an amazing trip to Myanmar, that’s very much worth it. I’ve never been to Bagan and this post makes me want to go there now. I’d love to try all the good food!
Looks like you had an amazing adventure in Bagan. We really want to go there to see the balloons at sunrise. The temples all look so beautiful too.
It looks like you had the best adventure visiting Bagan! It looks amazing and so picturesque I bet it was even better to see in real life!
Looks that you had an awesome day there and I really love all your photos and what you will be eat there. Glad that you share
Wow, 3,000 temples! I had no idea there were so many 🙂 Myanmar was also on my list for the longest time, hopefully, I can visit it next year and try out some of the places on your itinerary!
Myanmar is on my list, so this is great info! Your pics are gorgeous, and I also love eating at local, authentic places so appreciate your advice on how to order!
It is definitely on my bucket list. hope to get there soon and view these sunsets and sunrises in person.
What a breathtaking place! I love that you broke down an entire itinerary for people to make it easier for them if they visit in such a limited time frame.
I haven’t heard of Bagan until I read this post. Thanks for sharing this amazing place with us. I must say I would love to visit one day.
Very cool place! I love that massive temple! But the best thing is the delicious food! I think I can finish the plates in that table. 😀
I know it’s totally out of topic but I’m always so amused to see monks with a smartphone 😀 😀 😀 Myanmar’s on my list, it surprises me one could see the best in 3 days!
What an amazing journey to have taken. I actually am very unfamiliar with Bagan, Myanmar. Where you able to stop at a local marketplace?
We have never visited Myanmar but it looks so amazing. The fish on a stick looks delicious by the way!
Your lovely pics and an interesting post have put Myanmar on my must-visit list, thank you!
Wow! What a beautiful and exotic looking vacation spot. Your pictures are really great too!
Fantasy Jetty Bar looks amazing! The drinks may be strong but the food looks super tasty!
3000 temples??? Oh my goodness! That must be some really amazing place! I can see by your pictures the beauty and tranquility of Bagan, definitely a place to put on my travelling wish list.
Your photos of Bagan are very inspiring! I’d love to visit Myanmar one day, and this is making me want to go soon!
This is such a great guide! Your night photos are awesome. And the architecture is beautiful!
I had no idea there were so many temples in Bagan! It’s also good to know because one day, I intend on traveling there myself. I’ve seen almost all of Southeast Asia and Cambodia and Myanmar are the two left on my list. Also, I like how they eat a little bit of everything in little dishes. It’s very similar to Korea!
This place looks so cool. I would love to visit Bagan soon. That food looks so delicious. Great pics too.
It’s a very informative post. This is the first time I am hearing about Bagan, pardon my ignorance, but reading your post made me look about this place. Myanmar tourism is getting traction in the latest years and Bagan can be a nice place to include in the itinerary.
Indeed, Myanmar has quite a few things worth experiencing. At the moment I just can’t bring myself to visit it, though. It might be the last ASEAN country I tick off for travel within my own region. Maybe in future, when the Rohingya situation has properly reconciled.
Thanks for sharing us this beautiful part of Myanmar. Hope to visit it as well soon. Does this place also have many hotels?
These are some wonderful scenery, paradise view, its truly worthy of the bookmark. Myanmar is very high up my travel bucket list.
It is the place of history and architecture. If you are interested in ether of those, you should give it a try. But if you like both, it is a must.
What a beautiful place to visit! I’ve never heard of Bagan before–so magical looking!
2000+ temples! OMG! That’s too many for anyone to see in one trip. But I do love those sunsets and the food looks great too.
2000 temples! That is amazing. I didn’t know there was one pass for all. That makes it much easier to see. Your food from Ji Harmony looks delicious!
The sunset in Bagan is magical. The architecture is stunning and so is the food. I would love to visit Bagan one day and take a hot air balloon ride over the temples.
The sunset looks amazing and the temple definitely looks majestic. I’ve always been awe with the structures of these temples.
Thanks for the tip about carrying cash. I guess 3 days is decent enough to explore the basics.
Good to know about the Kumudara hotel. Sounds simple and impressive.
The solo sunset in such a locale is just magical
I have never tried Sky Wine. It sounds like 2 sips would be enough for me too. Also, looks like you found a perfect sunset spot!
oh wow! Bagan looks beautiful. The sunset looks like a painting. I definitely want to see it in person.
I love the photos. Bagan seems very un-touristy – there were hardly anyone in the photos with you. Is that the case? The hotel and restaurant seem amazing. I bet that fresh fish was incredibly tasty. Thanks for the recommendations.