Mount Popa Mountain
This is the abode of the Nats only about one hour drive from Bagan, its a extinct volcano with a monastery on the top at 1500 meters. The place is dedicated to the Nats. Although Buddhism has been the established religion in Myanmar since shortly after the great council at Patalipootra in 241 BC, spirit / nats worship or animism is also practiced.
Ghosts and demons
have never really been seen but that is no reason not to believe! The Burmese spirit world has thirty-seven Nats, many of them are the spirits of those who have been killed. There are Nats of the house, the river, the air, the jungle and many other.
At the entrance plenty of monkeys
are around since at the staircase some guys are selling bananas for them who rush around there, always out to grab something, mostly food but if they see something exiting, they try to grab it, better be careful because its almost impossible to get it back, they are monkey fast. They like your goggles, once they have them thy are gone forever, no way to get it back.
Other vendors selling various religious flower arrangements and incense to be used as religious offerings.
One can climb up the steep stairs and arrive at the top after between 30 and 60 minutes, it only depends on your condition, if you are not in good physical condition don’t do it because it takes a real effort to get up to the monastery and also to get down ! on top of it you have to do it barefoot, shoes are not allowed.
Opposite of the entrance to the staircase is a prayer hall (picture below) to make offerings to the nats, very colorful, be careful lots of mosquitoes are around.
Nat donation and offering hall Popa mountain
The red fans pictured here are very special gifts offered to Mahagiri, the Lord of the Mountain, the Popa Nat who functions as guardian for every household.