Buddhist temples in the Bagan Valley

Spread around the world there are a lot of Buddhist temples of great beauty, places that are worth visiting even if Buddhism is not your thing. If we talk about places with these temples, we must mention Burma , which is currently known officially as Myanmar and where there is a spectacular valley that concentrates more than 10,000 Buddhist temples from the 11th, 12th and 13th centuries.

They are in the Bagan Valley , in the Mandalay region, one of the most touristic areas in the country. Bagan is also an area that does not have security problems for foreigners, something that other parts of the country do, although in any case it is advisable to take precautions so that no problems arise. Bagan is about 200 kilometers north of Naipyidó, the country’s capital, so it is worth a visit if you are going to visit that city.

The Bagan Valley

This valley was the cradle of the ancient Bagan civilization, which emerged in the 9th century and began to spread throughout the country until the Mongol invasions in the 13th century. The Buddhist religion was very important in this area, and many Bagan kings built their temples there, as well as churches or stupas. It is estimated that 10,000 temples, 3,000 monasteries and 1,000 stupas were built at that time, which are spread over an area of ​​just over 100 kilometers that extends over the valley.

Temples today

Many of the temples and other religious buildings have been lost by abandonment or as a result of the more than 400 earthquakes that the valley suffered in the last century, and more than 2,000 of them are still standing today. Despite this, the Bagan Valley remains the most important Buddhist pilgrimage site in Asia. Among the most important temples are some such as the Shwezigon stupa , covered in gold leaf and said to house a tooth of the Buddha himself.

Also noteworthy are the Shwesandaw pagoda (it houses some Buddha hair and from there you can enjoy a spectacular sunset), the Mingalazedi stupa (on its walls it has engravings that relate some of the scenes of the Jataka, the historical stage of Buddha’s life ) or the Ananda temple , which is considered the holiest in Bagan.