Mount Popa itself, a 1500 metre tall extinct volcano covered in forests and considered one of the most sacred places in Myanmar, dwarfs curious Popa Taung Kalat, a rather odd looking volcanic plug. Sitting on top of this plug is a monastic shrine. This is home to the 37 Nat-spirits, said to be historical or legendary figures who suffered tragic deaths and now believed to exist as ghosts in places such as forests, mountains, trees and lake. This was the focus of Myanmar’s pre-Buddhist animist religion.
To reach the summit you must climb the 777 steps, but don’t worry they are mostly shaded and the view from the top is splendid. Pilgrims have been visiting the shrine for over 700 years and it remains one of the most fascinating places in the country.
The surrounding countryside is also rich in legend, as well as a perfect natural habitat for an array of trees and plant life thriving in the verdant volcanic soil.Its all just a one hours drive to Bagan, so easily accessible as an excursion or you could choose to stay overnight at the Mount Popa Resort.