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The outside world still knows it as Burma
but the name is now Myanmar.
We are not here to talk the politics in Myanmar. Many countries have governments not everyone agrees with but why isolate the people because of a country's internal policies. We wpold like to tell you about the land and the people.
We are going to take you to a fascinating country & hope you are encouraged to visit it sometime.
A country is its people & in Myanmar you have possibly the friendliest most honest people on earth. People with almost nothing by western standards who will still offer you all they can. About 90% of the population are Buddhist and every male spends time as a monk.
We can tell you to a lesser extent there are also female monks.
Travel in Myanmar is very safe and contrary to the impression that you might get from the western media....one of the safer countries in the world to travel.
Unfortunately there is not a lot of information on travel in Myanmar so we would like to tell you about our surprising eye opening experience.
We will add new chapters as time permits of our amazing trip from Rangoon to Mandalay.
We dedicate this story to our Taxi Driver Than Thay from Rangoon & our Artist Moe Ko Ko and his family from Bagan in the Irrawaddy Valley.
It is our intention to promote their services to you on this site.
THE ROAD TO MANDALAY
PART 1........RANGOON TO BAGAN
THE WORLDS MOST UNUSUAL& BEST PRICED PERSONAL TAXI TOUR OF BURMA.
We have personally travelled with Than Htay on a six day trip from Yangon (previously Rangoon) to Mandalay via Bagan. Htay has taken many world travellers around his country including Australians. He keeps an exercise book
with comments from his clients & the first we read was from an Australian gentleman & his daughter from Sylvania in Sydney !! The book was full of
happy & excited travellers full of praise for Htay (pronounced `Tay' like hay.
Htay will give you a taylor made tour based on the number of days he
estimates you will need to see the places you wish to visit.
You will be charged US$80 per day for his services & the hire of the taxi which
he will drive. This will cover 2-3 people. If you want the air coditioning on full time it will cost you an extra US$20 per day.
If you have not booked already he will find your hotels for you usually around
US$25 per night - charged by the room. These are comfortable roomy 3-3.5* airconditioned hotels.....entirely satisfactory to most travellers.
HOW TO GET THERE
Just catch a flight to Yangon Myanmar (Previously Rangoon Burma) & Htay will meet you at the airport & take you to the hotel of your choice which you can book
on the net or get him to do a booking for you. He says `Again, I can also arrange for my guests all these services such as Tour Guide services, Transportation, Accommodation, Air tickets ( both domestic and international). '
We went in the hot & humid & wet off season in July and it was fine to travel ...none of the heat or wet or humidity was any harsher than we get in the Queensland wet season.
Here are Htay's comments
`We can divide into two tour seasons in our country like peak season and low season. The peak season or high season starts from September and end in Feb. And the rest months would be the low season. And the weather of our country is normally good. And the temperatures are difference upon destinations. For example, The temperatures are occurred in Yangon normally about 30' C or 34'C on Summer season. Mandalay, Bagan , it happens about 40'C. Kalaw and Inlay Lakes are not hot and the temperature normally happen about 20'C or 25'C. Remarks; These temperature are only my estimation.
Designing your own tour can be difficult but you can work out all the finer details when you discuss with Htay in your Yangon Hotel.
Do a city tour of Yangon for US$30...half day to US$50...per day...covers 2-3 people.
HTAY says I would like to show you some of the tour itineraries below:
(1) Yangon- Taungoo-Mandalay-Bagan- Yangon ( 7Nights/8days)
Day (i) Yangon (Arrival) Sightseeing
Day (ii) Yangon - Taungoo ( By Car with Air Condition) Overnight at Taungoo
Day (iii) Taungoo-Mandalay ( By Car with Air Condition) Overnight at Mandalay
Day (iv) Mandalay ( Sightseeing)
Day (v) Mandalay-Bagan ( Hotel Transfer) Overnight at Bagan
Day (vi) Bagan (Sightseeing) Overnigh at Bagan
Day (vii) Bagan- Taungoo ( Night stop)
Day (viii) Taungoo -Yangon-Depture
Remark; The above itinerary is being taken 8 days but if you only have 7 days, you can directly go back to Yangon on Day 7.
2) Yangon-Beach (4days/5nights) ( prices 500 US$ with full AC/ 400 US$ without AC)
There are 3 popular beaches in our country. They are Chaungtha beach, Ngwe Saung beach, Ngapli beach. Ngapli beach only can be arrived there by FLIGHT. And it is very far to drive from Yangon.
Day 1 Yangon Arrival
Day 2 Yangon - Chaungtha or Ngwe Saung ( On the way you can enjoy Pathein City
where it is popular for making Umbrella)
Day3 Chaungtha or Ngwe Saung beach ( Relax, swim, enjoy the sea foods and enjoy
the lives of the people from villages near the beach)
Day4 Chaungtha or Ngwe Saung beach
Day5 Beach to Yangon ( overnight in Yangon or Depture)
Day 6 Depture.
It can take about 5 hours drive from Yangon to Chaungtha or Ngwe Saung beach. I would like to recommend you to visit Ngwe Saung beach as it has blue sea and white sands and even more the roads are very good to get there. And if you have time in Ngwe Saung beach, you can also enjoy Elephant camps near the beach.
3. Yangon-Hill Country ( Yangon-Taungoo-Kalaw-Pindaya-Inlay Lake-Taungoo-Yangon) 8days/7nights ( 640 USD without A/C, 800USD with A/C)
Day 1 Yangon Arrival
Day 2 Yangon - Taungoo (over night at Taungoo)
Day3 Taungoo - Kalaw (Arrived in Evening and over night in Hotel)
Day4 Kalaw (Trekking sight seeing and over night in Hotel)
Day5 Kalaw-Pindaya-Inlay Lake( Overnight in Inlay Lake)
Day6 Inlay Lake (sight seeing)
Day7 Inlay Lake - Taungoo (Overnight in Taungoo or Yangon to depart)
Day8 Taungoo-Yangon (Departure)
is a1990 model Toyota Cresta.pctured with Htay. It is comfortable enough & the air con
does work. I travels well & Htay is a good mechanic on the run. If you sit in the front seat you will wear some of the deisel fumes on any busy roads from small local machinary & trucks. This is a trd world country & the vehicle is entirely suitable for your journey.
YOUR SUITABILITY FOR THE TRIP
This is an adventure tour that we found totally safe & comfortable.
Bev likes 5 star all the way but found our trip wonderful & acceptable.
This is not a fake tourist resort setup. On the road you will find
fascinating happenings around every corner. You need to be
open minded, patient, accepting & have an enquiring mind to enjoy this one. You need to accept some occasional discomfort. You need to be very unassuming & polite. You also need to be able to keep any comments about the existing government to yourself or you could get Htay into trouble with the authorities who are endeavouring to do a difficult job.
We do not recommend all people for this trip.
HOW TO BOOK
Communication into Burma is quite difficult.
Try Than Htay on
Phone 011 095 128 003...they are about 4 hours behind us.
Bear in mind that he might be away on a trip.
If you have difficulty contacting him let us know.
Although we are not a booking agent for him we will be happy to
give you background information as a starter & help you make contact.
Please do not ask questions by email....phone us on 07 5441 5921.