Myanmar is a country in Southeast Asia with many unique structure of temples, pagodas in Bagan, Yangon, Mandalay,… Not a developed country with fast urbanization like Vietnam, Thailand or Singapore; Myanmar still keep its wild natural beauty. So, do not miss chance to visit Myanmar as you can to enjoy this with “Myanmar travel guide”.
1. Currency – First of all in Myanmar travel guide.
Myanamar uses Kyat. I remember not wrong, every dollar value will have different rates (but not much difference so be assured). I exchanged 300 USD for the trip (3 sheets of 100 $) with par value of 1,506Kyat / USD (converted into US $16 for 1 Kyat).
The money exchange is located at the airport exit after passing checked baggage. Minh looked at all the exchange counters and found AYA Bank Limitted’s counter with the best exchange rate (other counters are around 1480-1590 only).
Myanmar travel guide NOTE: All USD money used in this country must be completely NEW, will not accept even folding. Don’t bring old money to cry.
2. SIM Card.
Next to these counters are selling 4G sim too, I bought sim 16Gb, use 30 days for 12.500K, not use up. But 4G is strong, everywhere, not as weak as review, stronger than 3G but a bit weaker than Vietnamese 4G.
From the airport to Yangon: If you have time, it is recommended to take a Taxi to Okkalarpa Station (price of 3000 Kyat), then take a train to Yangon Central Station for 200K, travel time is about 1 hour (range $0,3 for nearly 20 km of railway.
Especially, you really need to try it, because this is the main public transport of the locals here. Above you can see most from street vendors, workers, office workers, it is worth to spend time learning the culture of the people here.
This train runs at the fastest speed of 25km / h (GPS measurement) and has absolutely no door at all. It looks quite dangerous but the wind swing is very exciting.
Myanmar Travel guide Note: From Yangon to the bus station or back to the airport, you should book a taxi (Yangon still has Grab but Grab taxi. There are still taxi signs but catch on the app and the price is cheaper. I tried to pay the price of the vertical taxi Road is equal to app price but not successful). From downtown Yangon to the bus station of about 10,000K. The reason to take a taxi is to take a taxi faster than taking a train, while taking a train down to the station near the bus stop but the taxi from the pier to the bus station takes 4000K (for 3Km). Not much different from taking a taxi from downtown Yangon (somewhat confusing).
4. Move to Bagan, Mandalay.
Follow the Old-Fashioned Way style to get to the station to buy tickets directly, not to book online. Taxi advised me to go Elite because of the new car or GoAsiaDayTrip’s transfer service and he didn’t disappoint me. The quality of the cars to the quality of both 2 service is very good (European cars imported by Scania, spacious seats, delicious soft meals).
Especially from Bagan to Mandalay, there are no high-quality cars, all are small cars like 32-seat cars with me but the road is not far away, it is more than a hundred kilometers so it’s okay. Still the best is the right time and not picked up along the way, no cramming. Thanks to owner of the hostel, I booked a very nice transfer service to move easily. To illustrate, picking up a hotel at Bagan or Mandalay should be a taxi. Bus station in Mandalay is 8 or 10 Km from the center.
There is a special kind of Grab in Mandalay, there is no Grab Car, Grab Bike, but a car like a Lam car or Thai Tuk Tuk, but very new, green, small and pretty, Uncle is sitting first carrying 2 people behind, quite interesting. Gentle smooth running.
All hotels were booked through Agoda, because the advantage is to preview the room. Knowing price in advance and choose the desired area in accordance with the schedule. This time, the details of the schedule are not specific, so before you leave this place, book a hotel for the next destination. The reason for book hotel instead of dorm because the price is insignificant difference. The furniture tossed is not worrying, especially the night sleeping naked comfortable hen. For location, you should choose the following areas:
Yangon: Priority area near Central Railway Station, near Bogyoke Aung San Market
Bagan: There are 3 zones: New Bagan, Old Bagan, and Nyang U. So in the Nyang U area it will be quiet, reasonable price and convenient to move to other areas.
Mandalay: The area near the old palace, prioritizing the southern gate area of the Royal Palace.
Inle Lake area.
This area is small, everywhere. I was in “Thousand Island Hotel Inle Lake hotel”. Next to the curb leading to the lake, less than 1km from JJ Express bus station. Stepping out of the door, there is a wharf to visit the lake. This is one of the tallest hotels in this area, so it is very hot to go to the rooftop terrace.
At the time of arrival is 3am, the hotel still let me check in as usual, the next day the car ran at 5pm. The hotel let me stay in the room until 4:30 pm to check out to get down to the lobby to pick up the car without completely collecting extra fees.
The receptionist only lightly reminded me when I felt that I had a good review on TripAdvisor with Agoda. The room price is almost only $21 (because I book and prepay via agoda) which is very quality and clean. Very pleased.
6. Other notes.
- Should bring a lot of warm clothes because the evening in Bagan has 17-18 degrees, and Inle Lake is fine, 12 degrees. The daytime range is about 30 degrees, so it is very susceptible to heat sock, especially when the sun is just out of the mountain, it is very fast and clear.
- Phone should install Map.me app, is 1 map offline map. Using this map is not continuous online like google map so it saves battery very significantly, but locates exactly a 9 a 10 with google.
- In the past, I heard that Myanmar has Thanaka Powder which is emitted from a very good plant. It is said to be effective for skin care and sun protection. But through pictures, everyone has dark skin, honey cake, so I think it’s a trick. However, to take advantage of the new marketing department, the skin is typical. No one has acne, pitting scars, big pores or dark spots at all. Looks very smooth like eyes. Girls over there should try this. I tried it too but because of sweating, I got a tiny bit because it was full of face.
Here you have to get used tvo the stares. People are willing to stare at me even if I look back. It was a bit awkward at first but I got used to it. Warn you to prepare mentally with this Myanmar travel guide ^^