Bagan Pagodas

Local Stupas follow more or less the same architecture as other pagodas but there are variations in overall forms and details. This are solid structures, the layout is normally a square and variants are up to octagonal. Enshrined are sacred relicts and donations plus statues and images plus item donated by devotees, scriptures are included.
The lower stupa structure is terraced of up to five times, with a bell shaped upper part. The terraces are indicating the slopes of the cosmic mountain Mt. Meru, the abode of Hindu gods, the stupa is also a symbol of Buddhism. Bagan has probably the highest density of this monuments on the planet. The reason is a common believe building a pagoda gains merit for next life.

Best know structures are

The Bupaya which is situated on the brink of the Irrawaddy or Ayearwaddy river, above rows of crenellated terraces (pics below), the rather small shrine is a conspicuous landmark to navigators. The dome resembles that of the Ngakywenadaung assuming the form of a cylindrical relic casket. It stands a bold convex band upon which rises a tapering stupa finial. Tradition attributes the pagoda to king Pyusawhti who ruled the city in the 3rd century A.D. Stylistically it may be 

ascribed to about 11th century A.D. Within its precincts is a shrine dedicated to the God of Storms (Mondaing Nat).

Over 2000 of them

are still around at the plains around, they are in very different conditions, some are ruins, others are still in good shape. Its almost impossible to keep all of them in good shape. If you have a look around for the monuments take a tour guide, one of them is a lady who is doing a excellent job as a guide and more, just look around at the airport she is often there.

The reason is,

as a tourist its not possible to know which are the real good places at a given day, how to enter them since most are closed, it needs a key to get into etc. Some have a very interesting structure with plenty of richly decorated rooms adorned with murals paintings and so on even if you have the best guide book you will see only a fraction of as when you are with a guide, it also will save lots of time.

We show the monuments

which are still in good condition, you will see enough ruins when driving or cycling, maybe with horse cart or just walking, its better to be focused. If you like it the rustic way use an ox cart, no joke there are still quite a lot, they only are real slow, if you are on a esoteric trip to slow your mind down it might be a good idea.

The Gubyaukgyi

The Gubyaukgyi cave pagoda (right picture) constructed after a donation by Prince Yaza Kumaya in 1113 as a cave.

Among countless paintings, 550 jakata stories with 16 x 40 cm each, were placed on the walls of the main building. The temple has beautiful windows featuring plaster works of floral design.

 

 

Bupaya Pagoda
Bupaya Pagoda and Irrawaddi
Bupaya Pagoda and Irrawaddy
Golden Dhamma Yazika Pagoda
Golden Dhamma Yazika Pagoda
Bagan Pagoda and Temples
Panorama and Balloons over the plains

This is the largest assembly of religious monuments

on the planet and here are more pictures.

  Bagan Pagoda and Temples
Ananda Tempel
Ananda with a layout like a Greek Cross
Thatbyinnyu Temple
Thatbyinnyu with a strong silhouette
Shwesandaw Pagoda
Shwesandaw and other Bagan temples
Shwezigon Pagoda
Shwezigon pagoda platform
Bagan Pagoda Bagan Pagoda
Bagan Temple
At the Irrawaddy
Bupaya Pagoda
with Bupaya Pagoda
Golden Pagoda
and more