Myanmar bans visit to Bagan ancient pagodas

Myanmar authorities have banned visit to ancient pagodas in Bagan, an official report quoted an announcement of the Ministry of Culture as reporting Tuesday.

Visitors will not be allowed in the vicinity of Bagan's ancient pagodas and stupas as of March 1, the announcement said, adding that the restriction is part of the efforts to conserve Myanmar cultural heritage.

The announcement cited the reason that crowds of visitors at the pagodas pose a risk to the durability of the edifices in the area where there are more than 3,000 ancient buildings.

The announcement blamed visitors for being often found dancing and sleeping in the ancient temples, ignoring the restriction on such behavior.

Meanwhile, Myanmar Ministry of Hotels and Tourism, in cooperation with Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), is drafting plan for sustainable development of the ancient city of Bagan.

The number of tourists visiting to the archaeological site has been on rise with the tourist boom since the opening up of the country.

Bagan is also seeking for UNESCO's recognition as world heritage site status.

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