Shwedagon Pagoda by Night, Yangon

Posted on December 6th, by Juan in Activities, Monuments & Sights, Religious Sites & Temples. 2 comments

Shwedagon Pagoda is the most sacred Buddhist pagoda in Myanmar and worth not only visiting it during the day, but also at night. It is located to the north of Yangon between People’s Park and Kandawgyi Lake, and visible from almost everywhere in the city, being the main element in Yangon’s skyline.

The main entrance to the Shwedagon Pagoda is guarded by two lions-like creatures called chinthes, which act as guardians to the pagoda.

Once you enter, this stairway leads you to the pagoda and here is where you start feeling the majesty of what you are about to see.

Shwedagon Pagoda is breathtaking when you admire its golden colour. It’s 2,500 years old, 99 meters hight, and surrounded by 64 smaller pagodas plus four pagodas at the four cardinal points.

The stupa has … Read More »

U Bein Bridge: The Longest Teak Bridge in the World

Posted on September 24th, by Juan in Activities, Monuments & Sights. 2 comments

U Bein Bridge is a unique sight in Myanmar and one of the highlights when you visit Mandalay. It is located in former capital city of Amarapura, just 10 km from Mandalay.

It is the longest teak bridge in the world, measuring 1.2 km and crossing Taungthaman Lake.

The teak wood came from the royal palace at Amarapura, including the columns used as the bridge pillars. When the capital was moved to Mandalay they took it down and U Bein, the mayor, used the teak to build this bridge so locals could cross Taungthaman Lake.

During the day it’s very busy. It forms part of daily life as hundreds of locals cross it to go to work and return home.From the little cafes on both sides you can spend hours watching people coming and going … Read More »

Best Shopping in Yangon: Bogyoke Market

Posted on August 2nd, by Juan in Activities, Handicrafts & Workshops. 4 comments

Bogyoke Market is the most popular market in Yangon with more than 2,000 shops and a big selection of handicrafts, souvenirs, clothes, jewellery & gems, antiques and art galleries.

Bogyoke Market, formerly known as Scott’s Market, is located in central Yangon and was built in 1926 under the British rule, and is therefore an example of colonial architecture.

If you find your way out of the narrow passageways that make up the market, at the back you will find some cafes and restaurants.

Larger shops can be found on the outer streets of the market.

One of the most popular items for sale at the market are the traditional ‘longyi’ skirt worn by women.

Inside the market you will find many stalls like this one filled with the different styles and ethnic designs.

Read More »

Paradise in the Heart of Yangon: Kandawgyi Lake & The Karaweik

Posted on July 29th, by Juan in Activities, Monuments & Sights. 1 Comment

Kandawgyi Lake is an enchanting place in Yangon. It’s got beautiful natural scenery and is home to one of Yangon’s landmarks: the Karaweik.

The Karaweik is a unique palace built in the form of a royal barge and facing the iconic Shwedagon Pagoda. It is 39 meters wide and 82 meters long.

Karaweik the name for a mythical bird with a melodious cry.

Beautiful view of the stunning Shwedagon Pagoda from the teak bridge in the lake. It’s a romantic place, there are always young couples enjoying the peace and tranquility, away from the noise of Yangon.

There is a teak bridge that crosses the lake. It’s very enjoyable to walk along it, surrounded by nature.

Here you can see a local monk enjoying an evening stroll.

And you have to watch … Read More »

The Art of Fishing and One Leg Paddling, Inle Lake

Posted on July 21st, by Juan in Activities. 13 comments

The fishermen at Inle Lake are a must see on your trip to Myanmar. One leg paddling, team work, nature, peace… it’s a unique combination in Shan State.

Inle Lake fishermen have a curious and unique rowing style, which consists of standing on one leg on the extreme of the boat and wrapping their other leg around the the oar.

The reason for this way of paddling is because there are many reeds and water plants in the lake, and if they row sitting down in the boat they can’t see them.

Standing on the end of the boat they have a great view and can lead the way better. Also, they have their hands free to collect the net whilst propelling the boat.

The fishing boats are traditionally carved teak.

The fishing … Read More »

Floating Gardens on Inle Lake

Posted on June 9th, by Juan in Activities, Monuments & Sights. 3 comments

These are the floating gardens on Inle Lake which tourists can visit on boat trips to the lake.

The surrounding mountains form a dramatic backdrop to this stunning lake.

Farmers move between their crops by boat through these narrow channels.

The villagers who live in these huts have developed a unique way to power their boats. They pedal with their feet, leaving their hands free for other things such as pulling up fishing nets or harvesting tomatoes.

The houses are made of bamboo and sit on top of long bamboo canes that hold them above the lake. The space under their houses is used to store their boats, as well as being a good place to do the laundry.

Local woman travelling though the floating village by boat.

Woman tending to her … Read More »

Local Bus Trip (Ngwe Saung Beach to Pathein)

Posted on June 5th, by Juan in Activities. 2 comments

This is a typical local bus in Myanmar for short distance trips. They are well prepared for carrying goods on top and, in this case, the gas tank. Sometimes you even see people travelling on top!

This trip was from Ngwe Saung Beach to Pathein, famous for being the place where Burmese Parasols are made. It’s just a 55 km trip, but the roads are bad and the bus stops frequently to load and unload goods and pick up passengers in small villages, meaning that it can take up to 4 hours.

Utilitarian and vintage dashboard.

These are the seats which are more or less comfortable until they load goods everywhere. On our journey they were transporting coconuts.

In addition to the coconuts and crazy driving, there was also a gas tank just next … Read More »

Royal White Elephants at Hsin Hpyu Daw Park, Insein (Yangon)

Posted on May 15th, by Juan in Activities. No Comments

It is said that white elephants bring peace, stability and prosperity to the nation. When these three white elephants were discovered they were brought to this park to be protected and visited by the public. “The white elephants represent peace and weath. They are a sign of the good future awaiting our country” U Ottama elderly Buddhist monk.

Some characteristics of white elephants are the pearl eyes, white hoofs, the back which hangs down like the bough of a banana tree, the white hairs on the body and tail, and the tah gah paik (closed door) shaped tail.

This is Hsin Hpyu Daw Park, where the white elephants could be living…

This is where they really live…

They are chained like this to the concrete and can’t move…

This guy feeds the white … Read More »

Human Powered Ferris Wheel at the Karen New Year Festival, Insein (Yangon)

Posted on March 15th, by Juan in Activities. 1 Comment

Ferris wheel at the Karen New Year festival in Insein Township (Yangon). The Karen people celebrate their New Year every January 12th. The amazing thing about this wheel is that it is powered by people! When all the seats are full, the young guys in florescent t-shirts climb to the top to push it down. The following three photos show this process in more detail.

One of the guys in the ferris wheel team. First step, they all climb to the top.

Second step, they pull down and hang from the big wheel using their weight to make it move.

Last step, as they reach the ground they all jump off the wheel and let it spin round several times.

The team get ready for the next spin.

Happy family and ferris wheel … Read More »

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