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Top 8 Temples to visit in Myanmar

Temples worth travelling to

Myanmar is home to thousands of religious and spiritual wonders. From exquisitely constructed temples to humble village shrines dating back to the 11th century, discover the top 8 cultural sites that are sure to leave you breathless.

1. Ananda Pahto Temple, Bagan

Address: Bagan, Myanmar
Opening hours: 8:00am to 5:00pm 
Closest airport: Nyaung U Airport
Entrance fee: USD20 for Bagan free zone 

It is clear why Ananda Pahto is top of every traveller’s list. It is the finest, largest and best presented out of the four surviving temples in Bagan. Built in 1105 AD, the Ananda Pahto is highly revered and houses four standing Buddha statues, facing North, South, East and West respectively. Due to its popularity, there are many hawkers who sell their wares outside the main entrance to the north. Get ready to don your haggling hat for a bargain souvenir or, alternatively, approach the temple from the east side for more peaceful access.

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2. Shwedagon Pagoda, Yangon

Address: Township, Yangon, Myanmar.
Opening Hours: 4:00am to 11:00pm daily, last admission at 9:45pm
Admission Fee: USD 8 per person

At 100 metres high, Shwedagon Pagoda is the biggest golden tower in the world and can be seen from any point in Yangon. This 2500-year-old temple is Myanmar’s most treasured feat of religious virtuosity.

Get directions | See other pagodas in Yangon

3. Shwesandaw Pagoda, Bagan

Address: Bagan, Myanmar
Opening Hours: 5:00am to 10:00pm
Closest airport: Nyaung U Airport
Admission Fee: USD20 for Bagan free zone 

Visit Shwesandaw Pagoda for what is arguably the best sunset view over the plains of Bagan. Presenting an amazing vantage point from which to see the masses of temples scattered across the land, be sure to bring your camera for some truly spectacular photographs as you climb the steps from the side of the pagoda past the five terraces. 

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4. Lawkaoushaung Temple, Bagan

Addresss: Bagan, Myanmar 
Opening Hours: from 5:00am 
Admission Fee: USD20 for Bagan free zone

To complete the sun gazing experience, find your way to Lawkaoushaung Temple for views over the Myinkaba Plains. If it’s closed when you arrive, find the key holder who resides in a hut behind the temple. It’s a little extra effort, but your reward will be a spectacular sunrise in a temple devoid of other tourists.

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5. Pindaya Caves, Myelat

Addresss: Myelat, Myanmar 
Opening hours: Daylight hours 
Nearest airport: Heho Airport
Admission fee: USD3

Located on a limestone ridge in the region of Myelat are the Pindaya Caves, renowned for being an important pilgrimage site. Take a short flight to Heho Airport from Yangon, and enjoy a scenic 1.5 hours drive to the site, which is not too far from Inle Lake. The numbers of pilgrims far outnumber the visiting tourists, so if you’re feeling energetic and want a bit of privacy, take the back entrance and make the climb for some undisturbed, stunning views.

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6. Kyaiktiyo Pagoda

Address: Kyaiktiyo Pagoda Rd, Mon State, Myanmar
Admission fee: 6,000 Kyats (about USD4.40)

Sitting atop a large golden boulder, the Kyaiktiyo Pagoda is another important pilgrimage site in Myanmar. The boulder is uniquely situated, perched on the edge of a cliff in a state of gravity-defying suspension. It is purported that the structure is balanced on a strand of Buddha’s hair; the locals believe that even a mere glimpse upon its wonder is enough to turn anyone to Buddhism.

Getting there: Take a 4.5 hours bus journey from Aung Mindalar Bus Station in Yangon that costs about 8000 Kyats. Enquire with our concierge desk for ticketing and departure times. 

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7. Mahamuni Paya, Mandalay

Address: 82nd Street, Mandalay, Myanmar
Opening hours: 6:00am to 8:00pm daily 
Admission fee: USD4 
Closest airport: Mandalay International Airport 

The 13 feet golden Buddha that resides inside Mahamuni Paya is believed to be over 2000 years old. Over the years, it has been heavily covered in layers of painted gold leaf, so much so that its once familiar shape has morphed. There is an art gallery inside the temple’s courtyard that depicts its interesting history. 

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8. Popa Taung Kalat Monastery, Bagan

Address: Bagan, Myanmar
Opening hours: 8:00am to 5:00pm daily 
Admission fee: USD5
Closest airport: Mandalay International Airport 

Residing on top of Mount Popa, 1518 metres above sea level, the Tuang Kalat Temple boasts spectacular views of rolling lush forestry and provides a truly tranquil setting for spiritual revelry.

It is a sacred site for the people of Myanmar, who believe the area was the birthplace of power spirits called Nats, who occasionally manifest themselves in human-form. To reach the summit is no easy task as there are many stairs (and monkeys) to navigate; however there are lots resting points along the way.

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Begin your exploration of Myanmar with a comfortable stay at PARKROYAL Yangon, or via the capital city at PARKROYAL Nay Pyi Taw located at the halfway point between Yangon and Mandalay. 

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