Sanon

A charming addition to the Nyaung U restaurant scene, Sanon has a classy but casual setting, with tropical plants surrounding an open-sided dining room. You'll find inventive Burmese small plates that are meant for sharing: river-prawn and catfish curry, pan-seared squid stuffed with pork, and crispy watercress and onion pakora. It has delicious juices, too (try the mint and pomelo freeze).

Head inside to check out the spotless kitchen (with high-end equipment imported from Australia). While the cooking isn't flawless, dining here supports a worthy cause: Sanon is a nonprofit training restaurant that was created to give new opportunities to Myanmar youth.

Address: Pyu Saw Hti Street, Next to Thante Hotel, Bagan

Phone: +95 9 451 951 950

Opening Hours: 11:00 AM - 10:00 PM

Black Bamboo

Run by a French woman and her Burmese husband, this lush garden-cafe and restaurant is something of an oasis. It's a pleasant place to relax over solid Burmese, Thai and Western dishes, a well-made espresso or a delicious homemade ice cream (the best in Bagan). Service is friendly but leisurely. A new terrace makes a fine spot for an evening drink.

Address: Yar Thin Thar Street, Nyaung U, Bagan

Phone: +95 61 60 782

Opening Hours: 11:00 AM - 10:00 PM

Weather Spoon's Bagan

Brits will be familiar with the name, borrowed by amiable owner Win Tun from a UK discount-pub chain, and there are plenty of Western classics – fish and chips, pasta, pancakes – on the menu here, as well as Thai and Chinese choices. It's justly famous for its decadent burger, and this is the most popular spot on Restaurant Row.

Address: Restaurant Row, Yarkinthar Street, Nyaung Oo, Bagan

Phone: +95 9 430 926 40

Opening Hours: 9:00 AM - 11:00 PM

Kyaw Kitchen

Tucked away a few blocks north of the main road, Kyaw Kitchen earns high marks for its good-quality cooking, friendly service and appealing, garden-like setting. Highlights from the creative and wide-ranging menu include a Burmese-style seafood risotto, a butterfish curry, grilled river prawns and a juicy veggie burger.

Address: High School Road, 4th Street, Bagan 05232

Phone: +95 9 259 754 811

Opening Hours: 10:30 AM - 9:30 PM

7 Sisters Restaurant

Although it sounds like the title of a fairy tale, the restaurant is indeed run by seven sisters, who do a fine job cooking up prawn curry, Yunnan-style chicken, fried tofu with mushrooms, roast duck and many other dishes of Thai, Chinese and Burmese origin.

Set with teak pillars, fine woodwork and a soaring ceiling, the space resembles a Buddhist adoration hall, and tea lights add to the magic in the evening.

Address: No.79, Nwe Ni Street, Situated at the Corner of 3rd Street and Nwe Ni Street, New Bagan, Bagan

Phone: +95 61 65 404

Opening Hours: 8:00 AM - 10:00 PM

Be Kind to Animals The Moon

The original among the vegetarian restaurants clustered near Tharabar Gate, this garden-like eatery off Bagan–Nyaung U Rd offers a friendly welcome and delicious food, including pumpkin curry with ginger, sautéed vegetables with vermicelli, spicy chapati wraps and creamy lassis. Don't overlook the homemade ice cream for dessert.

Address: North of Ananda Temple, Old Bagan, Bagan

Phone: +95 9 420 709 847

Opening Hours: 10:00 AM - 10:00 PM

Khaing Shwe Wah

This friendly family-run spot serves up delicious plates of vegetarian fare. Start with a papaya or pennywort salad before moving on to noodle soup, golden-pumpkin curry or the much-loved tomato-peanut curry, which goes nicely with coconut rice. Other hits include aubergine salad and guacamole with pappadum.

Address: Ananda Pagoda, North Gate, Bagan

Phone: +95 9 402 512 622

Opening Hours:

Sarabha

Of the two Sarabhas back to back by the Tharabar Gate, we prefer the one behind, away from the road. It’s a great midday resting point for shade and its range of food (Chinese, Thai, Burmese, pizza). The food’s good, and cheaper than hotel restaurants, but best are the cold towels handed out to wipe the dust from your face.

Address: Old Bagan, Bagan

Phone: +95 9 968 172 009

Opening Hours: 11:00 AM – 9:00 PM

Sunset Garden

Boasting the best riverside setting of any New Bagan restaurant, Sunset Garden has a huge deck above the Ayeyarwady with memorable sunset views (when the clouds cooperate). Head here for a sundowner before the tour groups pile in for dinner. The menu includes a greatest-hits selection of Burmese, Chinese, Thai and international dishes.

Address: New Bagan

Phone: +95 9 789 710 910

Opening Hours: 9:30 AM – 9:30 PM

Bagan Zay

Bagan Zay serves up attractively presented and creative curries, as well as dishes with Middle Eastern influences: try the Burmese-style falafals or the grilled-eggplant sandwich. There are ample vegetarian choices, including a vegan curry (with pumpkin, cauliflower and broccoli) and lentil galettes, and it does OK cocktails too. Look for the distinctive grass roof.

Address: Thiripyitsaya 4th Street, Nyaung Oo, Bagan

Phone: +95 61 246 2057

Opening Hours: 9:00 AM - 12:00 AM