Old Bagan is mostly the Bagan Archaeological Zone that requires a valid entrance ticket. New Bagan doesn’t and the distance between two would be about 10 mins on an e-bike. Further on the Bagan itinerary, today I will be continuing with Day 2.
3 days in Bagan Myanmar – Day 1
- 3 days in Bagan Myanmar – Day 1
- 3 days Bagan itinerary – Day 2
- 1. Visit Mount Popa
- 2. Hike around or to Mount Popa
- 3. Mount Popa Monastery, Taung Kalat
- 4. Have coffee at Bagan Regalia, Nyaung-U
- 5. Relax at the ACACIA Spa and Salon, Nyaung-U
- 6. Eat at the Black Rose Restaurant
- 3 days in Bagan – Day 1
- Day 3 of 3 days Bagan itinerary.
- What I used to take these photos:
Let’s start with some FAQ about Bagan, Myanmar.
Bagan 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 (formal), Kyay Zuu Par (informal)
Getting around– I recommend discovering Bagan by hiring a bicycle (3000 Kyat p/d +), e-bike (5000 Kyat p/d +) or a private car from your hotel, or shops around town
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.Paragraph
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!
If you want to rewatch the whole thing on IG, click here -> check out the “Myanmar” stories on Instagram.
3 days Bagan itinerary – Day 2
1. Visit Mount Popa
Mount Popa Resort is about an hour away from Old Bagan. For this trip, I recommend hiring a private car that comes with your private driver. He will pick you up, wait for you and drop you off where you need to go. Don’t forget to carry rain or windproof jacket as it could get foggy, rainy and windy up there. You can make it a day here if the weather is nice, with the pool and the Monastery view on top of the hill. If you look closely, you can even see the stairs of the Monastery!
An alternate and more exciting way is to drop by and check out the view from the deck, grab a tea or something then hike to the top of Mount Popa and back. However, I don’t recommend coffee here, I’m holding a latte and it was out of a sachet and tasted horrible! Good thing though – the view from the terrace is worth $3 they ask at the entrance which is refundable when you exist. Just remember to keep the receipt.
2. Hike around or to Mount Popa
It’s an interesting fact Mount Popa is actually a volcano 1518 meters (4,980 ft) above sea level. Google advised 4 hours hike from Mount Popa resort to the top of Mount Popa and back. Make no mistake, it is exactly 4 hours and more if you are a slow hiker or take a lot of breaks. It wasn’t physically demanding but the weather reminded me of the time when I trekked Mount Everest Base Camp.
I recommend carrying a bottle of water and other essentials like snacks and mosquito sprays. The hike started out okay but as you can see in the picture, it got way too foggy quickly! At times, I couldn’t tell if I was on the right track but it was an adventure which is why this is one of my favourite thing to do on this 3 days Bagan itinerary.
It might seem never-ending after almost 2 hours hike but if you are on the right track and hiking in a good phase you should see the green-colored house on your right. From there, it is another 25 minutes to the top. Lunch is available at the resort if you want.
You can see the greenhouse and the temple at the summit.
This is the view of Mount Popa from Mount Popa Monastery
3. Mount Popa Monastery, Taung Kalat
Before you get confused, Mount Popa Resort, Mount Popa and now Mount Popa Monastery are all located in the same area, about an hour’s drive away from the flat landscape of Bagan. I did all this in a single day because I didn’t want to spend 2 hours each day in a car. I had lunch at the base of the Mount Popa Monastery and had a good laugh watching monkeys being dramatic.
After the 4 hours long hike, if you are up for the next challenge. Here it is! From the base to the top where the Mt Popa Monastery lies, there are precisely 777 steps to climb, lots of monkeys and a steep walk. This would be one of the sweaty exercises in this 3 days Bagan itinerary. You have to take your shoes off at some point, there are cabinets to keep them or if you have a bag, you can also carry it yourself. If you can brave it all, then the climb to the top is a bit of a thrilling experience!
Throughout the walk, you will meet people asking for a donation to keep the place clean. If you have extra kyats, the donation is good but the cleaning part is questionable. There were many shops on both side of the stairs and more and more monkeys as you go up. I’ve heard about monkey attacks in the past and was bit worried. The trick that worked for me was to not look at them straight in the eye and go steady with my steps. The climb near the top was dangerous with just iron stairs but once you make it through all of this, a nice view of Mount Popa welcomes you. A holy and historical place with 360 views of the surroundings.
4. Have coffee at Bagan Regalia, Nyaung-U
After an action-packed day, you may want to ask the driver to drop you off in Nyaung-U to explore before the day ends. Nyaung-U has more choice when it comes to coffee shop, bars and restaurants. I recommend Bagan Regalia if you are after a boost of coffee energy. It is the local’s and travellers favourite coffee shop in town. They also offer freshly baked cakes, cookies and more.
5. Relax at the ACACIA Spa and Salon, Nyaung-U
You deserve a good massage after hiking all day! There are not many options in old Bagan but I found a good one in Nyaung-U called ACACIA Spa and Salon. It was only $10 for 1.5 hours of Swedish massage! Plus the place was peaceful and nice. I felt relaxed and was ready for dinner after this. They also offer shower and towels if you prefer a shower before or after your massage.
6. Eat at the Black Rose Restaurant
What better way to end a busy day than with another local’s favorite spot. During dinner time, Black rose restaurant in old Bagan was crowded with travelers and locals. Decent food, friendly staff and they have a big map of Bagan on their wall. So, pretty handy if you want to plan your temple-hopping while you eat! Or you can just read about the Bagan temples that offer the best view here. Free WIFI is available in the restaurant.
I hope this 3 days Bagan itinerary helps you with your own trip. Below are some more of how I spent day 1 and day 2 in Bagan, Myanmar.
3 days in Bagan – Day 1
Day 3 of 3 days Bagan itinerary.
What I used to take these photos:
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Let me know in the comments if you:
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