The theme of this portion of my travel seems to be rain and as I arrived in Bagan after an 8 hour bus ride to yet more of my despised travel companion, I prayed for a brighter tomorrow to allow me to get out and explore the temples.
Staying in the Ostello Bello hostel offered me a chance to connect with lots of other travellers staying in the area whom I would later find myself spending more of the trip with. The first evening was spend prepping for Halloween by carving pumpkins which offered a nice distraction from the downpour and a great way for everyone to get to know each other.
The following morning it was at least dry and I headed out with some of the other guests to see the temples. There are over 2000 temples in Bagan so really you can never see them all (unless you are very dedicated). What’s more interesting is that they are simply dispersed all over the place, so we were able to just stop whenever we wished to see something. It took us a while to get into the rhythm but after lunch the sun came out and we finally found a stupa which we could climb for panoramic views of the surrounds.
One day was not enough for me and I spent the next day continuing my exploration, feeling that I had seen much of what Bagan has to offer but hadn’t been completely templed out. On day two we also headed out onto the river for a beautiful sunset boat ride to appreciate the area even more.
Bagan delivers in a way you can’t describe, it is like a lost world and being so large, with (relatively) few tourists, you can find yourself almost entirely alone in certain parts. The temples are intersected with countryside and small towns as well, so you get to see more of the local culture as you explore.