Snake Temple

Myanmar (Burma)

Myanmar has several temples where real live snakes are worshipped – the humongous Burmese python at Bago's is reputed to be over 125 years old. At least 19ft long and in places a foot wide, the python, which seems barely alive, is called Daw Saw Nan Wei and is said to be the reincarnation of a Shan princess.

Another story goes that the snake is a reincarnation of a revered monk. Either way, it is likely one of the largest and oldest snakes in the world. No wonder locals flock here to pay their respects and shower the sleepy python with gifts of cash.

The Shwe Taung Yoe Paya zedi, nearby on a small hilltop, is great for watching sunsets; however, you have to cross a festering rubbish dump to reach it.

The monastery and zedi are about a mile south of Hintha Gon Paya; locals should be able to direct you there.