Brooke and I had managed to get a 7am flight with AirAsia to Yangon (Rangoon) for under $100 AUD, which sounded like a good option when I only had two days remaining on my Thai Visa. Instead of paying another night of accommodation and having to leave on the 4am bus to DMK Airport, we opted to sleep there instead. It's never as bad as it sounds.   

Arriving into Yangon we automatically were drawn to noticing that everyone wearing these skirt-type items of clothings, known as a 'longyi'. Catching a cab into Yangon centre we quickly realised it had a similar vibe to Bangkok in terms of there being traffic and people everywhere.  

Our first day didn't start off to a great start, our hostel didn't have any mention of our reservation so we spent our first 40 minutes trying to find a new place to sleep. In other South East Asian countries, this would have been easy enough. Here, however, guesthouses need a licence to accommodate foreigners. Arriving early, and not having a decent sleep for over 30 hours we decided we'd nap and then spent a half day exploring. 

Monument Park, Yangon. 
Inside Botataung Paya
Offerings inside Botataung Paya
 Botatuang Paya was supposed to be around 5,000MMK to enter however we somehow managed to walk in through a back entrance. It was quite obvious we had done so, as we were also the only two carrying around our shoes. The most interesting fact about this Pagoda is that it was completely destroyed after WW2 and was then rebuilt.

To get to these places, we had taken the circle train; a 3 hour loop around Yangon for a dollar. We didn't take the whole loop, but the 20 minutes we spent on the train was hectic. People constantly getting off and on, unloading packets of foods, animals and unidentified items.


While taking the train back to the main area of Yangon, where we were staying we saw a temple out in the background, so hopping off the next stop, we made our way to this time actual free pagoda.
Each Buddha's hand gestures mean something different - I only remember that the lying Buddhas have two different stances: sleeping and nirvana.

One of the days, we decided to do a day trip to a smaller town 3 hours out of Yangon, called 'Bago.' You're supposed to pay a 10,000MMK fee for most of the attractions here, which goes directly into the governments pockets. I had read a blog post somewhere saying we could hire a scooter driver for around 6-8,000MMK. We opted to do that, which ensured our money was being recycled into the local community.
Although for some sights, you are supposed to have the ticket - we managed to walk around the side and "sneak" in - this time on purpose. Knowing from our past experiences, this time we placed our shoes inside our backpacks to ensure we 'fit' in.

 Botataung Kyaik Pub Pagoda
Cleansing ritual.

Bago's Buddhas and Pagodas are actually some of the oldest in the country, however due the constant restoration and upkeep, they ultimately look brand new. There was scaffolding around a few of the Buddhas we saw (see below) and also constant cleaning going on of different temples.

I think the perhaps, the part of Bago that stood out the most was the Snake Monastery. The locals believe this is a reincarnation of a former monk. Being over 17m long and over 120 years old, its questionably the longest/largest snake in the world. 

Returning to Yangon, we spent the other days checking out markets, more pagodas and generally just trying to eat our body weight in Indian inspired food. We did actually see a KFC, which the locals seemed to be loving, which I guess unfortunately is a glimpse in how the western world will be coming over and opening more and more businesses. 

a typical Burmese breakfast, thanks to our guesthouse! 
I'm back in Thailand, safe and sound apart from catching a parasite. Does this mean I've made it as a full blown traveler? I'll be updating the rest of my Myanmar travels as the days pass along - as well as an actual 2015 guild. 

Hope you're all well. 
Until next time. 


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“To see the world, things dangerous to come to, to see behind walls, draw closer, to find each other and to feel. That is the purpose of life"

Meet The Author

I'm Sarah, a 24 year old communications graduate from Melbourne, Australia. I like dogs, netflix and avocado dip. I'm currently documenting my unplanned travels with the help of my iPhone, Canon Powershoot and friends.