Thursday, September 27, 2007

Myanmar, Part III

After Mandalay, we took a boat down the Ayeyarwady River to Bagan. For me, Bagan was definitely the highlight of the trip. The area around Bagan is littered with temples---more than 3000 of them in 16 square miles. You can climb up on top of many of these temples, and when you look out over the plain, you see hundreds of temples in every direction.

Here's Jake looking out over the temples:

Mary and Anne, on top of the same temple:

This is a fairly typical temple in Bagan. Like most of the temples in Bagan, it's not covered in gold:

Shwezigon Pagoda is covered in gold, but the way that the gold is peeling off on the lower levels makes it look pretty cool:

We had our first experience with flooding in Bagan. Over the course of the three days that we were there, the river slowly rose until it flooded the main road through town:

It wasn't too deep, so people could still get through it---but there were a bunch of houses between the road and the river that were flooded, too. Of course, they build their houses on stilts to deal with this, but I'm sure it's annoying to have to wade through the river to get to your house.

The flooding also gave us an adventure one night on the way to dinner. We wanted to go to a riverfront restaurant in Bagan called The Beach, but we couldn't get to it since the surrounding streets were flooded. So the restaurant sent motorcycles to come pick us up and drive us through the water, two at a time! We took a boat to get back, which was also pretty cool, although we still had to wade through a few feet of water at the end.

I'll end with a few random pictures from Bagan:


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