Yangon is widely known as the former capital of Myanmar (Burma). It attracts many tourists all over the world to come and visit because of its own unique beauty and a lot more interesting features to explore. To many Myanmar tours, Yangon is chosen as the starting as well as the ending point.
#1. Yangon (Rangoon) overview
Another name of Yangon is Rangoon. As being recorded in the Burmese history, Yangon is the capital of Myanmar when this country had successfully had its own sovereignty during the period from 1948 to 2006 before the government here decided to change its capital to Naypyidaw. Despite that, this city has not lost its position to the modern Burma. Nowadays, with the pace of economic and social development of hustle and bustle Myanmar, Yangon is the entry of this country and it is the place to mark many important external relations in many fields. In addition, in the tourism service sector, it is always standing at the top of best places to visit in Myanmar.
Yangon is located in the southern of Myanmar with the role to be a port city. As the evidence of clear influences from the colonial regime, nowadays, tourists when coming to visit Yangon will have chances to see a variety of buildings, constructions, architectural works and other sights with a very uniquely impressive beauty. Being the largest city of Myanmar, Yangon is also considered the commercial, industrial and cultural center of the country. In this article, with the provided Myanmar guides, let’s find out the most outstanding attractive features of Myanmar and some notes for every tourist who is planning a memorable trip to Myanmar and particularly Yangon!
#2. Yangon Weather – Best time to visit
Located in Southeast Asia, Myanmar has a featured climate of countries in this area: Tropical climate which is almost hot and wet year round. There is pretty clear three seasons for a year in Myanmar: cool, hot and green season. Just like the name, in the cool season, the temperature is lowest, only 20-24 Celsius degree on average, lasting from October to February. Compared to other some countries in Southeast Asia at the same time, this season is called winter and early spring. It is considerably cold those days and you need to bring quite more warm clothes if going to Yangon during this time – Oct to February. If you can arrange your timetable, you can enjoy your Myanmar trip best. In the hot season, which lasts from March to May, the recorded temperature often fluctuates between 30 and 35 Celsius degree, and that is the reason why it is called the hot season. Likewise, in some other countries of this area, they have late spring and summer, the time which is characterized by this hot weather. And the last season in Myanmar is called the green season – from June to Sep. This is the comfortable weather in Yangon, entirely suitable for your Yangon sightseeing tours because the weather is really wonderful with the average temperature only somewhere between 25 and 30 0C.
#3. Get in and Travel around Yangon
There are many available international airports directly leading to Yangon RGN International Airport from big cities in Asia such as Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Hong Kong, Kuala Lumpur, Singapore, Gaya, Kolkata, Kunming, Guangzhou, Nanning, Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, Seoul, Doha, and Taipei. Currently, the international airlines serving RGN include Thai Airways, Bangkok Air, Malaysia Airlines, AirAsia, Dragonair, Korean Airlines, Silk Air, Vietnam Airlines, VietJet Air and Air India.
Another choice for tourists for a mean to come to Yangon is by train if they arrive in Mandalay International airport. The services can be provided by many tour companies in Myanmar. There are trains daily departing from Mandalay. Although going by train may help you to save a remarkable amount of money for the trip, you need to get up quite early in the morning to catch the train, often at 2 or 3 a.m. It also takes more time to get to the destination in Yangon station so do not be surprised if you arrive late.The train takes overnight and very bumpy due to bad infrastruture of railway system. However, it is very fantastic to travel around Yangon by train. This would be a very memorable experience to tourist. 11 Local trains are available for this circular service, which crosses 37 railway stations, which you can see quite clearly in the Myanmar map. It may be a surprise for many people when they come to this city the first time to know that train fare is cheaper than bus fare. The central railway station in Yangon is Yangon Central Railway Station.
By Boat (Myanma river cruise from Mandalay)
Traveling by boat from Mandalay to Yangon is not a bad idea for those who do not get nausea. However, it takes a lot more time, normally 5 days. Likewise, it takes 3 days at least to go from Pyay to Yangon. When you return, the trip also lasts for 3 days. On the other hand, you will have a chance to enjoy the luxurious space of Delta Queen Ferry, for example, whose route is from Yangon to Pathein. This trip is highly recommended for tourists in Yangon sightseeing tours. It takes you around 20 hours with the price of $170 for each person. There is also some other suggested trip by boat with very reasonable price and time cost.
This must be the most economical solution for tourists coming to Yangon, especially for backpackers. In Myanmar, you can choose either from the two following bus highways. The first is Dagon Ayeyar Express Bus Station in Hlaing Tharyar, by which you can get to Ayeyarwaddy Room. The other choice is Aung Mingalar Bus Station. From there, you can catch any bus to get to all cities and towns of the country, except for AyeyarwaddyDivision. In Yangon, there are more than 250 bus routes carrying passengers to go around this city. For such busy and modern city, people are always in a rush. To avoid a traffic jam, the government encourages commuters to go by bus. Until now, there are over 2.5 million people using this service every day. To travel by bus around Yangon, you need to pay from Ks 40 to Ks 120 for the bus fare. The difference depends on the distance you travel.
Getting around Yangon by Taxi
Like in many other developing cities all over the world, the number of a taxi in Yangon is very high. Whenever you need to move to somewhere else, you can easily call or catch a taxi from everywhere. Of course, along with more convenience and rapid speed than Myanmar bicycle tours, you need to pay up to Ks 1000 for a ride 10 minutes by taxi. In order to avoid any misunderstanding and conflict, it is advisable to make a bargain before your travel so both of you will reach the most suitable option for the price.
#5. Top places to visit in Yangon
- Shwedagon Pagoda: In many articles written about Yangon of Myanmar, Shwedagon Pagoda is mentioned a lot for the most worthy places to come. It is the most sacred Buddhist pagoda in Myanmar with relics of four Buddha kalpas. Therefore, it has long been recognized as the symbol of Myanmar and always recommended to tourists for their Yangon sightseeing tours.
- Sule Pagoda: Sule Pagoda is located in the heart of Yangon and can be easily accessed. That is why people say that this over-2,000-year-old pagoda has a strategic location, a religious significance, and poetic beauty.
- Museums: With a religious country like Myanmar, we should never skip museums in the list of best places to go and visit. There are many meaningful and majestic museums in Yangon for tourists who like to explore this city. The most notable ones can be named are National Museum, Bogyoke Museum, Gemstone Museum where many important events in Myanmar take place.
- Scott market: Scott market is the former name of Bogyoke Aung San Market. However, if you say this name nowadays, many people, especially tourists will not know about it because they have got familiar with the short name Scott market. This market is the major bazaar, which is located in the center of Yangon. From there, you can buy many interesting things as souvenirs with cheap price while enjoying your Myanmar holidays.
- British Colonial Street: Along this antique street, there are many buildings in British architecture. Walking along the side of this street, you will certainly have the feeling to go backward to the past and watch the beautiful image of the former Yangon.
#6. Best Places to stay in Yangon
|Hotel stars||Hotel Name||Descriptions|
|2 Star+||Mr. Lee or MK hotel||Lovely, small hotel with very clean rooms, central location. Affordable price.|
|3 Star||Grand United Hotel||A perfect location with very spacious rooms. Many rooms have an awesome view of Shwedagon pagoda. The restaurant serves until very late at night with delicious foods. Website of the hotel: www.hotelgrandunited.com|
|4 Star||Taw Win Garden hotel||Ideal location in the heart of Mandalay city with few walks to convenient services eg. Shopping, restaurants and surprisingly nice room under its price range. Website of the hotel: m3hotelmandalay.com|
|5 Star||Shangri-La Hotel||Very centrally located, huge hotel with a nice view to Sule pagoda. Website of the hotel: www.shangri-la.com/yangon/suleshangrila|
|Top 5 Star||Governor Residence||A top five-star hotel under the management of repute Belmond Group. Best long-standing 5 stars hotel. Website of hotel: www.governorsresidence.com/web/pyan/governors_residence.jsp|
#7. Useful tips when visiting Yangon (Myanmar)
Are you ready for a trip to Yangon right now? Indeed, there are too many attractive things in this beautiful city that urge you to pick up your bags and start your trip. However, make sure that you will have an exciting travel with the following tips – the most important notes for a trip to Yangon.
Unlike other developing cities in the world, you should be careful to use credit cards in Yangon. Even though, VISA and other cards are accepted in main cities including Yangon since 2014, only in some hotels and landmarks have they accept to use credit cards. Therefore, make sure that you bring enough cash to spend in case of any emergency.
Another note related to currency used in Yangon in particular, and in Myanmar, in general, is that you can use US dollar for almost every activity here. This currency unit is widely accepted. For some certain activities that require Kyat currency, you can also easily exchange your US dollars. If you want to spend with cash, make sure that your notes are not torn or too old; otherwise, you can be refused for some particular service or purchasing activities. If you spend with US dollar notes, they should have the series from 2003 onwards.
In some countries or cities in the world, traveler checks are already accepted, but it is not the case in Yangon. Therefore, just keep it in mind.
Is there any other problem that you may be confused when coming for a Myanmar travel tour to Yangon? Language! Do not worry, because, with the need to integration, English is spoken worldwide and also in Yangon. You will find no difficulty communicate with others in either English or Burmese. Last but not least, a very important note when coming to visit Burma, a country of religion is the respect to Buddha. Temples and pagodas must be the destinations for many tourists. In fact, most of us know that it is not appreciated to wear short or unsuitable clothes to these sacred places everywhere. Be polite and nice when coming to a pagoda, no matter what your purpose is, either for praying or visiting. Aside from short clothes, you should also avoid wearing slippers, flip-flops or no footwear.
Beautiful Yangon is the ideal destination for every tourist coming to Myanmar. However, to make sure about your exciting trip, there is some very necessary information for you to know as written above. Hopefully, by reading this article, you will find out some good advice for the better and more convenient Yangon sightseeing tours. Now, let’s plan your trip in detail and get ready to enjoy the joy of your holidays.