Next Trip Myanmar

10 interesting facts about Bagan
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So its been a short while since my short trip to Cambodia’s Siem Reap, Malaysia’s Langkawi and Kuala Lumpur and the quick touch of Thailand in Koh Lipe.

So where next?

Well I have a quick weekend trip to Amsterdam this September. However I have also decided to pursue a trip to Myanmar also known as Burma this October. Reason being is that I have been persuaded by a friend who is from the country and the fact that Bagan has just been made a UNESCO world heritage site. I am a little sad I wont be able to visit Mandalay and the country’s new capital Naypyitaw  but I guess this could be done on another trip.

I want to visit as much of the country as possible but unfortunately with only a week to venture (due to work) it looks like I will only have time to visit two main regions, Bagan and Yangon. Bagan being highly advised and a must not miss during a stay in Myanmar, whilst Yangon is a huge city which is my entry and exit point, so I decided to have a look around aswell. I have decided to stay in hostels for the simple reason that I meet more people there, then to end the trip I have decided to stay in a more luxurious hotel in order to rest-up and relax.

So what do I expect from this trip?

I expect similarities between Myanmar and  Cambodia. I expect Myanmar to have the more modern temples whilst Cambodia the older more ancient temples, however the lifestyle I envisage (but could be wrong) to be the same. I expect to use unusual modes of transport but food similar to that of Cambodian, Thai and Malaysian cuisines. Visiting here hasn’t really been on my bucket list but just recently after visiting Cambodia it was high up on my list.

Any advice for this trip?

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  1. I did managed to visit Yangon, Mandalay, Bagan and Inle Lake in 8 days. I do have several blog posts about the various places. I must say trying to squeeze so many places in 1 trip isn’t a good thing. Since you have decided to visit just Yangon and Bagan, I would just keep my advice to these 2 places.
    Yangon – I presume you would be flying into Yangon. Traffic is horrible with jams almost everywhere, so plan your time early. I think most people make a beeline to Shewadagon Pagoda which is the main attraction. Best times to go are in the evening where it’s not so hot and you also get to see the pagoda lighted up at night. You have to take off your shoes and socks before entering the pagoda, so burning your feet on the hot stone floor during midday visits isn’t the best thing to do. Other notable places to visit is Bogyoke Aung San market if you want to buy local stuff. The Circular train is a nice ride on the local commuter train and a chance to see how the locals live. But I heard parts of the Circular train route are closed to for upgrading. There are some other smaller attractions but I would skip them if you don’t have time.
    Bagan – I’m not sure how you plan to get from Yangon to Bagan, but it’s either by road or plane. If you take the road option, it takes more than 8 hrs by car. By bus would be longer, so plan your time. Getting around in Bagan is either with e-bikes, bicycles or hiring a driver. Roads are dusty during the dry season (Oct) and if you want to bike it, then you better bring a facemask and goggles.
    Personally, I find Yangon has less attraction for me. I would spend maybe 2 days in Yangon and the rest of the time in Bagan, or even include Mandalay. Do factor in that travelling times are longer in Myanmar because of the poor road conditions, especially outside of Yangon.

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    • Thanks for the very detailed advice, ive put all youre recommended places on my to do list… because of time (7days) i opted to travel around by plane… I am also torn i should keep to Bagan-Yangon,,, or add Mandalay aswell using the boat cruise… but a few people saying i could do Yangon for 2 days where ive scheduled 3 days, how long would you advise for Mandalay…
      I cant wait for this trip…

      Liked by 1 person

    • Ahh brilliant thanks for the insight, very useful and has got me that much more excited… I was going to get myself a motorbike but if not an e-bike would do just fine…
      Did you find cost similar to Cambodia?


      • Yes, almost the same. Myanmar might be slightly cheaper than Cambodia, though I can’t check now because my phone got stolen and I can no longer access my budget records in the app I’ve been using. I have a blog post about Myanmar with cost breakdown and other tips that you might want to check out. I had the mistake of booking a hostel in downtown Yangon after arriving in the morning when we were set to leave for Bagan in the evening when the bus terminal is in the airport area (airport to downtown is about 30-45 mins travel time). So if you’re planning to do the same, better stay near the airport area. There’s a nice hostel walking distance from the airport 😉

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  2. Bagan is absolutely stunning, I would recommend you to rent an e-bike and also to wake up early and go see the sun rise between the temples: it is so beautiful, but you should find a quiet place where there is not a crowd of people.
    And bring some wet wipes with you, they are very useful because you will be visiting a lot of temples in Myanmar, and you have to walk there barefoot 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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