Minglaba! That’s hello in Burmese. Let’s start your Myanmar introduction with a little teaser. What is its capital? If you said Yangon, well, sorry it is the wrong answer. However, Yangon (formerly called Rangoon) served as the country’s capital as recently as 2006, when it moved north to Naypyidaw. Yangon is still mistaken for Myanmar’s capital and it is easy to see why. Not only is it Myanmar’s largest city, it is also the country’s commercial and cultural hub. So, let’s explore this fascinating former capital, shall we?
One of the first sites you will visit is Shwedagon Pagoda. This is one of Myanmar’s most iconic monuments, that big golden stupa you have may have seen on Burmese postcards and guidebooks. Now, you can see it for yourself and realize its religious significance to the Burmese people. There are also other interesting pagodas on hand to see in the city, Sule Pagoda at one of Yangon’s busiest intersections and Kyaukdawgyi Pagoda, home to a huge reclining Buddha statue.
There is more to Yangon than just pagodas, of course. Numerous rivers dissect through the city with lakes (both natural and artificial) dotting the city throughout. This sounds like a recipe for parks and gardens, doesn’t it? If you would like to experience Burmese at ease within a natural and peaceful setting then Kandawgyi Lake and Inya Lake are the places to go. If you like to gaze at colonial European buildings then head to Mahabandoola Garden.
There is also some great tea here. Why not unwind with a cup or two of delicious Burmese tea at a riverside teashop? Then, browse for crafts and souvenirs at Bogyoke Market and the busy shops of Chinatown.
There are also things to see and do just outside of Yangon. Just 80 kilometers from the city is Bago, home to the world’s 2nd largest reclining Buddha statue (at over 55 meters long), Shwemawdaw Pagoda, Myanmar’s tallest pagoda (at 114 meters tall) and the restored former palace of Kambozathadi.
You will definitely be amazed with Myanmar. Magnificent Myanmar as we like to call it. The Highlights of Yangon & Surroundings tour is a great programto start your Burmese adventure. The program has it all, visits to pagodas, reclining statues, museums and parks. We’ll also throw in a stop to Bago as well. If you still can’t get enough of Magnificent Myanmar, then check out our Burmese tours page for other great ideas into the country. There’s so much to explore, so much to see and do. If you have some questions or need some guidance, feel free to contact us anytime.
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