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The Ananda Temple, located in Bagan, Myanmar is a Buddhist temple built in 1105 AD during the reign of King Kyanzittha of the Pagan Dynasty. It is one of four surviving temples in Bagan.
Explore the Sacredness of Beautiful Ananda Temple
In the center of the Ananda Pagoda is a large square room where four magnificent standing Buddha images are placed in arched recesses. The teak wooden 9½ meters tall gilded images represent the four previous Buddhas that have reached nirvana, namely Kassapa Buddha (South), Kakusandha Buddha (North), Konagamana Buddha (East) and Gautama Buddha (West).
The base and six receding terraces of the Ananda Pagoda contain the largest collection of plaques of all Bagan temples. The plaques are glazed terra-cotta tiles with depictions of tales from the Jataka stories, the tales about the previous lives of the Buddha. One side of the base of the Ananda contains 553 plaques that show the Mara, a demon who tries to prevent the Buddha from reaching enlightenment. The other side contains depictions of the Gods who celebrate the defeat of Mara and his armyThe terraces contain plaques that each show a different scene from a particular Jataka tale. The first three terraces contain 537 plaques with a description in ancient Pali language. The upper terraces contain another set of 375 plaques with a description in Mon language.
Over 80 instructional sandstone reliefscenes in the outer corridor depict the life of the Buddha from his birth until his enlightenment. The inner walls are mostly whitewashed but there is evidence they originally contained a number of murals. Upper floors are closed to visitors
Ananda Oakkyaung is simply a Monastery built with red bricks, located within the precincts of the Ananda Temple. It was built in 1137 AD. Paintings of the 18th century are seen in the walls of the monastery, which also have an inscription that attributes building of the monastery to three brothers. Shin Thuddhamma Linkara, a highly venerated monk lived here.
It is the only surviving gate of the ancient Bagan city (previously known as Pagan); the Ananda temple is located to its southeast. Tharabar, a word derived from the Pali word 'Sarabhanga', which literally means 'shielded against arrows'. Tharabar was one of the 12 gates of entry to the Pagan city built by King Pyinbya, in 849 AD. Some stucco engravings of Ogres are still seen on the gate. It is believed that two spirits protect it namely, the brother 'Lord of the Great Mountain' on the left of the gate and the sister 'Golden face' on the right side.
A field museum has been established near the Ananda temple in Pagan. The purpose is to study the artifacts in the ambience of their original settings
How to Get Tickets?
You don't need to buy tickets or any admission fee to have Ananda Temple Tour.
How To Get Around?
he best way to travel around the pagodas and enjoy Ananda Temple Tour is with a horse cart driven by locals.
What Should I Wear?
To do Ananda Temple tour, you should wear proper and modest clothes to respect the local culture and custom. For axample, no short/skirt above the knees and no open shoulder. You also have to take off your footwear when you enter the temple.
Best Time to Visit
The best time to visit Bagan is just after the raining season when all the monuments and pagodas are washed by the rain and the environment is green. It is about October. If you want to learn about the local people and their traditions, you should go during the festival time, which is usually in February but depends on the solar calendar.
Will I Need a Guide?
To have Ananda Temple Tour, you better have a tourist guide from local people with you to know the full history and also the part of the temple it self.
How To Get There?
Ananda Temple is located on the left side of the southern stretch of the Bagan-Nyaung Oo Rd. just before the road heads to Tharaba Gate of Old Bagan. Taxi is available at Nyaung U Airport, but you have to bargain to reach the place.
The temple is also home to an annual week-long festival that is held during the month of Pyahto (December to January). During the festival, 1000 monks perform continuous chanting of scriptures for 72 hours. Thousands of villagers from miles around set up encampments around the temple. On the morning of the full moon day, they offer gift bowls to the monks in attendance.