One of Myanmar’s main attractions, this is a temple town. The area known as Bagan (ပုဂ) or, bureaucratically, as the ‘Bagan Archaeological Zone’, occupies an impressive 26-sq-mile area, 118 miles south of Mandalay and 429 miles north of Yangon. The Ayeyarwady River drifts past its northern and western sides.
Pyin Oo Lwin
Founded by the British in 1896, the town was originally called Maymyo (‘May-town’), after Colonel May of the 5th Bengal Infantry and was designed as a place to escape the Mandalay heat. Following the Indian-raj terminology for such places, it has been known ever since as a ‘hill station’, although in fact it’s fairly flat (just at a raised elevation).
Founded as a hill station by British civil servants fleeing the heat of the plains, Kalaw still feels like a high-altitude holiday resort: the air is cool, the atmosphere is calm, the streets are leafy and green, and the surrounding hills are the only place in Myanmar where travellers can trek overnight without prior permission.