Yangon, one of 4 tourist highlights of Myanmar (besides Mandalay, Bagan and Inle Lake), is the largest and most cosmopolitan city in the Golden Pagoda Country. Most international travelers spend several days on their Myanmar tour exploring the busy and dynamic city. Here we suggest what to do in Yangon Myanmar.

1. Shwedagon Pagoda – visit and buy souvenirs

Shwedagon Pagoda may be the best answer to the question: what to do in Yangon. Being the most important pagoda in Myanmar, the pagoda is a must to any traveler who tours Yangon. Shwedagon Pagoda stands out by the 99-meter-high main stupa, which can be seen from every corner of the city. Locals believe that it was built 2,600 years ago and thus one of the most ancient pagodas in Myanmar while archaeological reports say that it’s about 1,000 – 1,500 years old. No matter how old the pagoda is, it’s an extremely beautiful structure, covered in gold leaves sparkling in the sunlight.
Apart from being the sacred Buddhist site and magnificent sight, the pagoda is a wonderful place to shop. Lots of small stalls line the staircases up to the pagoda selling exquisite flowers religious icons and votive offerings, as well as handmade crafts and other unique souvenirs.
How to get there: Take taxi from downtown Yangon for 2,000 Kyats
Open hours: 4 am – 10 pm daily (but closed on certain holidays, check website for details)
Price: 8,000 Kyats ($8.11)

2. Chinatown Yangon – eat and walk

If you desire to have a rich cuisine experience of a Myanmar travel, do not hesitate to add Chinatown Yangon to your list of what to do in Yangon Myanmar. Chinatown is one of the busiest and most eventful places in the city, especially in the evening when food vendors appear on sides of the streets, and provide you with everything from ready-made foods to fresh produce. You will be able to find typical Chinese food like grilled pork skewers and rice congee at 20th street. In addition, you can stroll at the night market in the Chinatown while enjoying all the delicious traditional Myanmar dishes such as Shan bun, Shan noodles, coconut cake with quail eggs, etc.
How to get there: It takes about 10-15 minutes walking from the Sule Pagoda
Open hours: It’s best for you to go to Chinatown Yangon in the evening.
Prices: A feast of barbecued meat, prawns, and fish for 2 people costs about $20.

3. Bogyoke Aung San Market – buy souvenirs

Shopping may be one of the most interesting things among what to do in Yangon Myanmar. Known by its former name of Scott Market, Bogyoke Aung San market is the biggest traditional in the city of Yangon and a wonderful destination for shopping. In need, you will be able to find almost all products there such as artwork, handicrafts, souvenirs and Burmese dresses. More particularly, the market is a famous address in selling jewelry and gemstones. If you want to give your friends and relatives unique or valuable gifts brought back from your Yangon tour, you can purchase them with reasonable price at the Bogyoke Aung San market. However, don’t forget to bargain! The first price you will get is always too high. The market is open between 10 am and 5 pm from Tuesday to Sunday.

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4. Kandawgyi Park – relax, walk and have a drink

Kandawgyi Park is not so famous compared to Shwedagon Pagoda, Chinatown or Bogyoke Aung San Market; however, it totally deserves to be included in your list of what to do in Yangon Myanmar. Indeed, its tranquility and freshness are completely opposed to the busy and hectic downtown Yangon.
The park is one of the lush green lake parks in the city. Making a visit to the park, you will be able to choose either of the option. On the east side of the park are a number of restaurants, including the Karaweik Palace, where you can eat and have a drink. It costs you 300 Kyats ($.30) to enter this area.
The other section is the lake boardwalk, an ideal elevated platform where you can enjoy wonderful views of the lakes, the Karawiek Palace, and the Shwedagon Pagoda in the background while doing exercise or walking. If you come here on a nice day when it’s not raining, you will be able to contemplate a stunning sunset view of Shwedagon Pagoda.
How to get there: take taxi from downtown Yangon for 1,000 – 2,000 Kyats
Open hours: 4 am – 10 pm daily
Price: 300 Kyats ($.30) for restaurant area, 2,000 Kyats ($2.02) for boardwalk

5. National Museum of Myanmar – discover history

If you have a special concern about the history of Myanmar and enjoy the museum type of environment, we strongly recommend a visit to the National Museum of Myanmar. The museum displays an interesting collection of everything related to Burmese culture and history. You will able to find here a wealth of religious relics, artifacts, artworks, a myriad of golden objects from the royal courts, and cultural explanations and ethnicities.
How to get there: take taxi from downtown Yangon for 2,000 Kyats ($2.02)
Open hours: 9:30 am – 4:30 pm Tuesday – Sunday, closed on Monday and national holidays
Price: 5,000 Kyats ($5.05)
Above are what to do in Yangon Myanmar that we recommend for your Burma tours. No matter what you do and where you are, the city of Yangon always welcomes you by its warm and hospitability. Do not miss Yangon on your Myanmar tour!

Yangon is the largest city and one of the most important tourist destinations in Myanmar. The city and its outskirts are full of attractions and sights. If you are a solo traveler, it’s essential for you to have a map of Yangon to make your trip more favorable and easily. Here we suggest all of the useful tips to use the Yangon map effectively.

What type of Yangon map should you choose?

You can choose either a road map or a tourist (or both). The former is suitable for long road trip, especially going outside the city. It requires you good skills at the reading map. The latter is useful for city breaks. It generally shows the attractions and points of interest around the city of Yangon. It’s is usually available at local travel agencies or in lobbies of hotels and hostels.

Why you need a map of Yangon Myanmar?

The map will help you easily plan your Myanmar travel. For example, if you want to make a bicycle tour around the city of Yangon, you will determine on the map the factors such as what you want to visit, the distance among them, the most convenient roads to reach them and restaurants or footstalls you will stop at for relaxing or dining. Based on the information, you can work out the time and even expenses for your trip. In addition, the map will help you estimate taxi fare. Taxi price in Yangon is very flexible, depending on your itinerary and ability of negotiation. The routes to key attractions in the city such as Shwedagon Pagoda will cost more than others. Based on the Yangon map, you may know what route you should choose to have better taxi fare and the length of the route you will travel by taxi to negotiate for a reasonable price.

How to use the map of Yangon effectively

Understand the features of the map

Knowing the features is important to read the map. Listed below are important features of a common map of Yangon Myanmar and an explanation about them.
Legend: The legend gives a description and guide of the different features and markings on the map.
Title: The title of the map tells you what area the map is off.
Grid References: A map is broken up into grid boxes, with the first 2 (or 3, depending on accuracy) digits being the x-value, and the last 2 (or again, 3) digits being they-value. Each grid reference starts with the letter assigned to the map.
The North Arrow: This arrow tells you which way is north – it always points to the top of the map.
Scale: The scale will tell you what scale your map is – whether it’s 1:25,000 or 1:50,000.
(Sea a Yangon map sample at: http://www.magadotravel.com/map_pdf/Yangon.pdf)

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Put the map of Yangon into practice

1. Point Your Map North
To point your map north, place your compass flat on your map, pointing towards the top, and rotate yourself until the compass’ needle points north.
2. Find your location on the map
Identifying your surroundings and relating them back to your map is the most important thing when trying to locate your position. You usually won’t know your exact grid reference starting out, so a good idea is to start at a grid reference that you do know. For example, you are standing in front of Sue Pagoda, on the Maha Bandoola road; you just determine the pagoda on the map of Yangon to know exactly where you are.
3. Find your destinations
Now it's time to figure out where you want to go. If you just want to go from one place to another such as Sue Pagoda to Shwedagon Pagoda, all you need to do is to plot that single route out.
If there are several places you intend to go to, you may want to plan your route in such a way that you visit all the places in the shortest possible manner. You can do so by going to the nearest places first after which you will go to the further places.
4. Use the map's index
Take note of the map's scale so that you can estimate your travel time, and if you are taking longer then you expected, you can stop to recheck your map. Don't forget to check the map's legend so will know what you are looking at.
With the map of Yangon in your hand, you can travel around the city at ease, visiting the best attractions such as Shwedagon Pagoda, Sue Pagoda, Kandawgyi Lake, Chinatown, Bogyoke Aung San Market, etc. Do not forget to master your skills at reading the map so that you would have the easiest and most comfortable Burma tours.

Yangon (the country largest city), Bagan (home to a multitude of Buddhist sites), Mandalay (one of the former royal capitals) and Inle Lake (natural wonder) are 4 places you’ll definitely want to visit in Myanmar. A lot of international visitors arrive at Yangon first and then travel to the others. Similar to the journey from Yangon to Bagan (we have mentioned in other articles), you can travel Yangon to Mandalay by air, train and bus (and even taxi but not common). The flowing is details about their main options.

Travel Yangon to Mandalay by bus


Yangon terminal: Aung Mingalar Bus Station
Aung Mingalar bus station is the main bus station in Yangon and located at Thudhamma Road, North Okkalarpa Township, Yangon, Myanmar. It is about 13 miles (about 50 minutes by car in normal traffic) from downtown and about 5 miles (about 30 mins by car) from the airport.
Mandalay terminal: Kywe Se Kan Highway station
Kywe Se Kan Highway station is the biggest station in Mandalay, 8 km from the city center
Service provider(s): JJ Express, BOSS, Mandalar Min, Academy, Khaing Mandalay, etc
Bus Time: 10-11 hours (sometimes it will take closer to 12)
Ticket price: US $12-17 for normal buses and $20-22 for VIP buses.
Ticket booking/purchase: at bus stations, local travel agents
An air-con night bus trip is a popular choice for visitors during Myanmar travel thanks to its cheap price and acceptable condition. Buses leave Yangon 5 times daily (17:00, 18:00, 19:00, 21:00, and 21:30). The buses aren’t bad but the road condition is! It’s a bumpy journey; normal buses do not have any toilets but they do stop several times per trip. It’s faster than the train and the night bus can save you a night accommodation rate.

Travel Yangon to Mandalay by train


Yangon terminal: Yangon Center Railway station, located in the Yangon downtown, 3 km from the Shwedagonn Pagoda.
Mandalay terminal: Mandalay Railway Station, located the Mandalay downtown, 2.7 km from the Mandalay Royal Palace
Service provider(s): Myanmar Railways
Train time: 16-18 hours
Ticket price: US $15 for ordinary class/hard seats and $50 for air-con sleepers
Ticket booking/purchase: at the advance booking office in Bogyoke Aung San road (note that you cannot buy the tickets at the main railway station in Yangon)
There are several trains daily from Yangon to Mandalay. The tracks are old and, in some cases, the carriages may be old, and the journey is extremely bumpy. You will have to cope with noises and shakings during your trips, and even you chose sleepers, it’s impossible to sleep as most of the journey is made on extremely bumpy rails. However, the journey allows for some awesome landscapes through the Burmese countryside.

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Travel Yangon to Mandalay by air


Yangon terminal: Yangon International Airport
Yangon International Airport (Mingladon) is approximately 30min north of city center. Allow 2 hours during the rush hours. It will cost about $7-10 to travel from the airport to the city center.
Mandalay terminal: Mandalay International Airport
The airport is far from the city, 45km on a modern toll highway. Pricing (2016) from the airport to hotels in central Mandalay is US $10 or 12,000 kyats (private taxi), or US $4 or 4000 kyat (shared taxi/minibus).
Service provider(s): Air Bagan, Air KBZ, Air Mandalay, Asian Wings Airways, FMI Air, Golden Myanmar Airlines, Mann Yatanarpon Airlines, Myanmar Airways International, Myanmar National Airlines, Yangon Airway
Flight time: 55m – 1h05m for a direct flight and 1h45m - 1h55m for a non-direct flight
Ticket price: $110-125 (economy class, one-way, low season, no promotion)
Ticket booking/purchase: at local travel agents or booking online via the websites of the airlines
Taking a domestic fight is the easiest and quickest way to travel from Yangon to Mandalay during your Burma tours. However, many travelers complain the ticket fee is too expensive. If you have a large budget of time, it’s better to choose others rather than the flights. In high season (November to February), the ticket price is normally $10 than that in low season.
Above are three options to travel Yangon to Mandalay (650-kilometer journey). No matter which transportation means you choose, prepare carefully for your trip. Spend several days on travel and tour in Yangon, and then freely head to the north.