The current exchange rate is about 1500 Kyat to $1 USD. There are numerous banks now in town as well as at the airport. There are now ATM kiosks as well now around the city, allowing you to withdrawal 300,000 Kyats ($200) 3 times a day. Some hotels and high end restaurants accept credit cards.
These two simple phrases, paired with a smile, will get you so far with the locals:
- Min-gala-bar – Hello
- Ta-tar – Goodbye
- Hote-dal – Yes
- Ma-hote-bu – No
- Kyay-zuu-bar – thank you
- Kyay-zuu-amyar-gyi-tin-bar-dal– thank you very much
Taxis are not as readily available in Bagan. Ask your hotel reception for assistance in acquiring you a taxi ahead of desired departure time. Always negotiate the price before getting into the taxi and take a hotel card with you so you can give them the information if needed. Ask your guide and/or the hotel staff in advance on the maximum you should expect to pay. The most interesting and unique way to discover this national archeological zone is exploring by an ebike (electronic bike). It is very popular among tourists nowadays. You can easily hire an ebike from your hotel or with the help of your guide.
7 Sisters Restaurant (Nweni St., corner of 3rd St.) Located off the main road in New Bagan, this spacious outdoor restaurant offers a cool, peaceful atmosphere under a covered pergola. The restaurant is run by 7 sisters who provide friendly service and warm hospitality. Menu offers Myanmar, Thai, European and Japanese dishes. +95-61-65404
Amata’s Boutique Irrawaddy Restaurant (Chauk Main Rd, Thiripyitsaya Ward) Irrawaddy offers European, Chinese, Thai and Myanmar dishes. They offer a quirky puppet show most evenings for tables out on the lawn. If you want a break from the heat during the day, it’s one of the only restaurants offering indoor air-conditioned seating in Old Bagan. +95-61-65099
La Pizza (Yarkintar St.)This quaint outdoor restaurant offers the best wood-fired pizza in Bagan. Enjoy a slice of pie on their adorable patio, accented with brightly colored tables and chairs, umbrellas and local art. Perfect spot for lunch or dinner, especially when you are searching for comfort food. +95 9 258 690 922
Sanon Restaurant (Next to Thante Hotel) This restaurant not only serves contemporary tapas-style Myanmar dishes, but also provides vocational training to marginalized youth. Open for lunch and dinner, last order is a 9:30pm. +95 9 451 951 950
Black Bamboo (Yar Thin Thar St.) Comfortable seating in an outdoor garden area off the main road offers tranquil spot in to dine in Nyaung U. There is a good selection of both European and local dishes. The salads, coffee and homemade ice cream are musts! +95 61 60 782
La Terrazza (Yarkintar St.) If you’re looking for more Italian dishes other than pizza then we recommend La Terrazza. The chef is Italian so you can expect authentic homemade pastas and sauces at this eatery. They are also known for their display of local art. MasterCard and Visa accepted. +95 9 40263 0878
Bagan Zay (ThiRiPyitsaya 4 St) This quaint restaurant on Nyaung U ‘restaurant row’ offers modern Myanmar and Western comfort dishes. The atmosphere is soothing and the staff offer exceptionally friendly service. They also sell souvenirs made by a local organization so give back to the community as you pick up some gifts to take home! +959-777 87 5795
Golden Myanmar 2 (North of Ananda Pagoda) One of the most famous restaurants in amongst locals in Bagan offers the best deal in town…all you can eat USD4 buffet. Portions are small so you can sample the many dishes and order seconds on your favorites. We recommend this for lunch and those looking to explore the local cuisine.
The Moon Vegetarian Restaurant (North of Ananda Pagoda) This little no frills standalone eatery has been around since 1994 offering tasty vegetarian dishes to travelers exploring the temples in Old Bagan. The service is very friendly and food is fast and delicious. It’s a great stop to refuel on a fresh fruit juice or lassi with homemade yogurt during your temple hop.
Massage & Spa
Aureum Palace Resort (Nyaung U) The Nature Spa’s design combines natural light, and warm, earthy colors and textures to create a deeply peaceful oasis. There are 6 treatment rooms, a Jacuzzi and sauna. They offer a range of massages, scrubs and multiple treatment packages. +95 61 60 146
Amata Boutique House’s Blossom Spa (New Bagan) Blossom Spa offers traditional herbal and fruit rubs, organic oil massages, and rejuvenating facial treatments. Opening hours: 10am-9pm +95 1 665 126
Thiripyitsaya Sanctuary Resort Spa (Old Bagan). One of the only spas in Old Bagan that offer massages, body treatments, wrap, scrubs, facials, as well as multi-course full spa programs. +95 1 255 333
The Dandaree Show, located in the Bagan Golden Palace, is known to be a spectacle of show and one of the very few attractions after sunset in Bagan. The performance highlights Myanmar’s rich history and culture through costume, multimedia, song and dance. There is an option to have dinner with the show, but we recommend you to eat elsewhere before or after the performance. Show runs from 1 November 2016 – 27 February 2017
Show Time : 7:30 PM Daily (except Tuesday), 70 minutes
Ticket Price : $20 & up. Make sure to book tickets in advance. Your guide can help to arrange this for you.
Reservations : +95 9 259100006
Nandar Restaurant & Puppet Show
Usually every evening there is a free puppet show performance given at Nandar Restaurant in Old Bagan from 7:00 to 8:00 during dinner service. The food served is traditional Myanmar fare. Make sure to ask your guide in assisting you in making a reservation for a table in the front. They are also open for lunch service without a puppet show. Located on Nyaung U Main Road in Wet Gyi Inn Village between Nyaung U and Old Bagan.
+95 656 0790
Internet is becoming much more available in the city. You should have it available in your hotel 24 hours a day but be warned it can go out often or be slow. If you need an internet café your guide and hotel will be able to recommend one closest to you.
To give you a rough idea of the standard in town, here is a list of tip ranges (although if you receive great service, please feel free to adjust these prices accordingly):
Guides : $5 – $10 total per day /Drivers: $2 – $5 total per day / Boats: $2-$4 per round-trip
Restaurants : 10% for local restaurants; 15–20% for high end European or Western restaurants.