Myanmar is one of the most authentic and photogenic countries in the world.
During our visit, we experienced kind Burmese people and and we always felt welcomed. Safety or crime was never a problem in the places where we visited.
Visit Myanmar as soon as possible, when you still can experience local life and preserved villages around the cities.
Before we planned the travel, we have checked the visa for Myanmar. Easiest and very convenient way is to apply the visa online with a fee of 50 USD.
You need to know your arrival city and you must pay the application fee online. In 2-3 days the application is approved, and you will get a letter by e-mail.
When you arrive to Myanmar, you need the online visa printed, your passport and a form that you will fill in the airplane. The officers are nice and there are no long queues in the arrival place, we have arrived first to Mandalay.
Here is our route for 2 weeks;
Start in Mandalay – 3 nights
Rental car with driver to Bagan – 3 nights
Flight to Heho, Inle Lake- 4 nights
Flight to Yangon – 3 nights.
I strongly recommend you to shorten the time at Yangon and extend your time in Bagan. Bagan is very mysterious and very photographic. In case you would like to visit the Golden Rock close to Yangon, then 3 nights is good time for Yangon.
There are more flights to Yangon, both domestic flights as well as from Bangkok and also international.
The local money in Myanmar is Kyat, USD is also very common. In hotels, you can pay in card or USD as well. We had exchanged USD to Kyat, it is better to have local money for daily expenses.
Here is the list of some average costs in Kyat; (in some places they just calculate 1 USD as 1000 Kyat in reality it was around 1200 Kyat)
Full day car with driver; around 40 000 – 50 000 Kyat
Entrance fees to some temples, castles, etc; 10 000 – 25 000 Kyat
Lunch, simple with noodles; around 3000 Kyat
Beer; around 2000 Kyat
A bottle of water; around 500 Kyat
Laundry in pieces; 300 Kyat, in the hotels, can be also per kg price
Our flight is from Bangkok Don Mueang to Mandalay airport.
We will have Air Asia flight (AK244) at 10:55. Price is appr.140 USD.
Air asia is very professional and they have very good connections in Asia. We arrive to Mandalay airport (MDL) at local time 12:20. There is 30 minutes time difference between Bangkok and Myanmar. Myanmar is 30 minutes earlier.
Upon arrival, you do not need a taxi because you can easily get the small buses to go to the Mandalay city. It costs 3 USD = 3000 Kyat. In Mandalay, they mainly use the conversion from USD to Kyat as 1000, makes it easy. In reality the exchange rate is different.
Since, we already bought Kyat from the airport, we paid in Kyat.
It is forbidden to take Kyat out of the country, there is no chance for you to buy the Kyat earlier from your countries. Still, the exchange rates at airports or at banks are quite reliable, we never had problem with money exchange.
Before we travelled, we have read a lot of warnings in internet that it is not so easy to find ATM or exchange place. We never had any problem with ATM or the money exchange.
It takes around 1 hour from airport to Mandalay city, 60 km.
Our hotel was one of best hotels during our entire trip. Tiger One Hotel. In the centre, extremely nice and friendly and helpful personnel. 33 USD per night per room.
The rooms are clean, the breakfast is good. The hotel has free bicycles , we had 3 bicycles to start to see Mandalay.
We cycled through 77 street around the castle, nice cycling road around the castle and water. In the beginning, the traffic was not so easy to get used to.
We entered inside the castle: Palace_Mya Nan San Kyaw Golden Palace_Nan Myint Saung. We bought a multi entry card (which we never used again:)) for 10 000 Kyat.
Some memories from Mandalay:
Some memories from Bagan:
Some memories from Inle:
Some memories from Yangon:
Many good reasons to visit Myanmar….