Myanmar’s national treasure is its well preserved historically immersive archaeological sites and Bago holds great value among other sites.
Settled and cultivated by the Mon peoples, it has now become one of the most sacred Buddhist centres of the country – after all, there is a popular legend about Buddha’s prophecy of Buddhism flourishing in the country where Bago City is established. Be amazed at the rich Buddhist culture of Myanmar and be astounded by the devotion of the pilgrims visiting Bago. A complete vacation: that which educates and entertains!
Bago is the city with the highest concentration of Buddhist monasteries, temples, and pagodas. A must include in your itinerary is the reconstructed Kanbawzathadi Golden Palace of King Bayinnaung of the 16th century: experience the empire’s splendour under his rule by immersing yourself in the ornate palace buildings. With the towering and extremely noticeable features of notable pagodas and monasteries in the area, you will surely not miss them – be rendered speechless as you tour the Shwemawdaw Paya, Mahazedi Paya, and Kyaik Pun Pagoda among others. Absorb the amazing atmosphere at the numerous large Buddha images found around the area – the reclining Shwethalyaung Buddha is the most notable one! Without a doubt, Bago’s surprises do not disappoint!
Yangon International Airport is the nearest airport from Bago at about 90 kilometres northeast. Air-conditioned vans or taxis can be rented for USD 80 to 100 USD for a day of touring Bago. Travel time from Yangon to Bago using this transportation means takes about 2 hours. You can also take the bus or train with 3 to 4 hours of travel time for around USD 3 to 5 fare.
The national currency of Myanmar is the Kyats (MMK) – available from money changers and banks. There’s a great abundance of banks and money changers in Bago, so negotiating for the most advantageous exchange rate won’t be a problem. ATMs can be expected in banking establishments. There are a lot of hotels in the vicinity and the most affordable starts at around USD 18 per night per person and most expensive at around USD 108.
Located near the equator, 2 seasons dominate Bago’s yearly weather – the wet and dry season. Rains usually pour from May to August with the latter considered as the wettest month. On the other hand, the dry season starts on December and ends on April, with February considered as the driest month. The best time to visit Bago is during the months of June and July when the weather is relatively predictable and the temperatures are pleasant and not too scorching.
The most enjoyable and affordable means of touring the area is through trishaw or rickshaws with fares ranging from MMK 500 to 1000 or roughly USD 1. You can rent these trishaws or rickshaws for USD 6 for the whole day. Better book a taxi for longer trips.
Staying true to their culture, cuisine served in Bago does not have that many foreign influences. Although locals have developed a taste for Chinese dishes and sometimes, European ones. Cafes and snack establishments are also slowly gaining popularity in the area. Basic meals, which includes viand, rice, and drink starts at around USD 5.