With my first few days back on my feet after my motorcycle accident I found myself in Bagan, one of the most gorgeous and spiritual cities in the world. While Myanmar certainly has beer, Bagan served as a much needed beverage break after Hong Kong, and was decidedly the most low-key of the backpacker destinations I’ve visited so far. Our hostel had a curfew and there was strictly no alcohol to be consumed near the temples, which were everywhere. In fact, the go-to activity in Bagan was to rent a motorbike and get lost in the thousands of ancient Buddhist temples sprinkled all across the city. Oh, great, more motorbikes.

Luckily I found a local willing to taxi us around to the temples for about $20 for the day. Here’s a taste of what we saw on our real life Temple Run.

Straight off the 12 hour bus from Yangon (which would come back to bite me later), I figured I may as well make the best of being up at 4 am and check out the sunrise. 

Straight off the 12 hour bus from Yangon (which would come back to bite me later), I figured I may as well make the best of being up at 4 am and check out the sunrise. 

My sunrise spirit animal. He took me to his favorite sunset spot that could only be accessed by scaling an abandoned building. We were the only two there.

My sunrise spirit animal. He took me to his favorite sunset spot that could only be accessed by scaling an abandoned building. We were the only two there.

I love visiting cities that have a very distinctive sky color. Myanmar had these subtle and stunning slightly salmon sunrise and sunsets, with that blood red east asian sun. 

I love visiting cities that have a very distinctive sky color. Myanmar had these subtle and stunning slightly salmon sunrise and sunsets, with that blood red east asian sun. 

Balloons over Bagan at sunrise.

Balloons over Bagan at sunrise.

ok I lied about the beverage break, we did a mini booze cruise through Bagan to celebrate Nik's birthday on our first night.

ok I lied about the beverage break, we did a mini booze cruise through Bagan to celebrate Nik's birthday on our first night.

Our sunset cruiser driver is livin' the dream. Plus he was Czech, so he basically just took us out into the middle of the channel and opened a handle on the boat to pass around. My kind of cruise.

Our sunset cruiser driver is livin' the dream. Plus he was Czech, so he basically just took us out into the middle of the channel and opened a handle on the boat to pass around. My kind of cruise.

What better way to celebrate your birthday than with a table candle, the banana crew, and a friendly game of King's Cup?

What better way to celebrate your birthday than with a table candle, the banana crew, and a friendly game of King's Cup?

A few decent humans in Bagan, Myanmar.

A few decent humans in Bagan, Myanmar.

Nik found the best view of the day.

Nik found the best view of the day.

As far as I was willing to climb with the giant boot.

As far as I was willing to climb with the giant boot.

This feels like a metaphor for something. 

This feels like a metaphor for something. 

Real life temple run.

Real life temple run.

I can't imagine him not in a skirt now.

I can't imagine him not in a skirt now.

For scale, I'm about the height of Buddha's earlobe. It’s no joke to mess with the Buddha. We heard hostel stories of someone who was deported for having a Buddha tattoo, and someone serving years of hard labor for using a likeness of the Buddha on a flyer to promote a bar.

For scale, I'm about the height of Buddha's earlobe. It’s no joke to mess with the Buddha. We heard hostel stories of someone who was deported for having a Buddha tattoo, and someone serving years of hard labor for using a likeness of the Buddha on a flyer to promote a bar.

skyline.jpg

While I ended up getting to spend less time exploring Myanmar than I had hoped due to my injury, I’m glad I decided to make the trek to Bagan. Many locals expressed that Bagan was changing with the influx of tourists, and that soon visitors would not have free reign to explore the temples. So it might not be a bad idea to bring Bagan to the top of your bucket lists.

- Sarah, 3.1.17