My Travels in Myanmar
I have been living and traveling in Asia for two years now. I have to admit that Myanmar (also known as Burma) is by far the most beautiful and interesting Asian country I have visited so far.
When you first think about Myanmar, you don’t really know what to think about it since it used to be inaccessible for decades. Even today, it is still quite unknown to the public so, of course, I had to give it a shot and see for myself this mysterious country.
Our first stop was in Yangon. It is not the capital city but it is Myanmar’s largest city. Funny thing about Yangon is motorbikes are NOT allowed in the city! Very surprising when you know motorbikes are all over Asia.
Yangon is very famous for its numerous and wonderful pagodas. The Shwedagon Pagoda (or Golden Pagoda) is the most sacred Buddhist pagoda in Myanmar. It is so huge and impressive we could have stared for hours. For the food lovers, you have to try the curries! It is a true (and cheap!) delicacy.
Bagan was the second stop and it is an absolute MUST. If you are a sunrise/sunset lover, then Bagan is what you are looking for. I was lucky enough to experience the most magical and unique sunrise, standing on top of a pagoda looking at the hot-air balloons flying on a golden sky. Spectacular view! If you are traveling to Bagan, make sure you rent one of those electric bikes (Feb 2017 – 8000 Kyats per day). They are very convenient and easy to use. It really is the best way to visit Bagan. Also, you can climb quite a few pagodas and take amazing shots from up there especially during sunset.
Mandalay and its GORGEOUS U-Bein Bridge was our third stop in the country. The bridge (1.2km), which is located in Amarapura near Mandalay, is the oldest and longest teakwood brigde in the world. While crossing, you will behold the Taungthaman Lake and the rice paddies all around. Make sure you visit the bridge during sunset! Once again, you will NOT be disappointed. Also, you can get quite a nice view of the city on top of Mandalay hill. It will take you 30 minutes to get on top and you will probably be accompanied by some very young monks running around and rushing to the top.
Our final destination in Myanmar was the Inle Lake. We spent a couple hours on a small boat very early in the morning so we could catch the sunrise AGAIN (they are worth it). Full day cruises are also available but when you are running out of time, I would definitely recommend the sunrise option where you can meet the fishermen.
Myanmar went beyond my expectations. People, food, landscapes… Everything was just perfect. I would do it all over again!