NAN PAYA TEMPLE - Asia Travel & Leisure

Asia Travel & Leisure


Nan Paya Temple is one of four Bagan monuments built of sandstones.
The architectural structure of Nan Paya Pagoda is unique. The inner walls were built of baked bricks whereas the outer walls were built of sandstones. It was built on the palace site where King Manuha, king of Thaton had resided. It is traditionally said that the king's great grandson Naga Tha-man built Nan Paya Pagoda. The date of its building was guessed either late A. D. 11th century or early A. D. 12th century.

The unique feature of Nan Paya Pagoda is the decorative artworks which adorn the four pillars of the interior chamber. On each of these four pillars are two stone reliefs of Brahma skillfully executed on stone and stone reliefs of ogres holding in their mouths bunches of intricate floral designs, done by master craftsmen. The Brahmas have three heads each, with obese pouch belley squatting on the lotus thrones. Lotus buds, blooms, stems, roots and leaves decorate the backdrops. The stone blocks were laid so neatly and tightly that the joints were concealed from view. The sculpturing works were executed on them. As these artworks are quite preserved in the interior of the chamber, well protected from sunlight and rain, traces of original colours on the reliefs of ogre figures and floral designs ale still visible.

In the centre of the chamber is a brick devotional throne but there is no image on it. But there must have been either a bronze or stone image on it. The Hindu style of its architecture, the presence of Brahma figures and the model of the brick devotional throne make some scholars think that Nan Paya Pagoda was originally a Hindu temple.

Located in Bagan Archaeological Zone
Open: Daily, all year round
Paying the Bagan zone fee of $15, you are allowed to access to all the temples and pagodas in Bagan.
Horse carts are plentiful available and can accommodate 2 – 3 adults. A full day sightseeing to thousand temples of Bagan cost you $20 – 25 for a horse cart.
You can also rent bike at around $8 for a day or electric bike at around $15 for a day.

As all other temples & pagodas in Myanmar, you are requested to wear over kneed trousers and leave foot wares outside before visiting the temples/ pagoda. Sandal is particularly convenient.
You may be asked to present your Bagan zone pass by officers, please be sure you keep it with you to avoid paying $15 zone fee again.