a VirtualTourist member from Bamberg
We are going to Rangoon in August. What is a must do and see and what should we avoid seeing or experiencing? Thanks, Dres
Actually it depends on how much time you have in Yangon (that’s how most people call it now instead of Rangoon). There is no doubt that the greatest attraction there is by far the 2,500 years old Shwedagon Pagoda, and I recommend you to spend at least 3-4 hours there, and better take a guide to explain your way around. There are many more secondary attractions in Yangon, including several pagodas (Gaba Aye, Botataung, Sule), the Chaukhtatgyi reclining Buddha image, the Bogyoke market for doing some shopping and the China Town. Keep in mind that you’ll have to take off your shoes before entering any holly area (pagodas included), so I recommend you to take with you convenient shoes and wet tissues for cleaning your feet from time to time. Another practical advice - keep with you a bottle of drinking water in your backpack and be sure to drink a lot.
Back to sightseeing, if you spare another day or two, I warmly recommend you to visit the nearby Kyaiktiyo (Golden Rock) and even spend the night there - that’s an unforgettable experience.
As the previous poster said, it all depends on how much time you have. And how long you are going to spend overal in Burma. There is a lot to see in Yangon itself. But i personally find that apart from Shwedagon the best attractions are not in or near Yangon. Let us know how long you have, and we'll come up with answers
One of my favorite things to do is just walk around town, especially in the area between Bogyoke Market and the river (which includes Sule pagoda and Mahabandoola Park). Very colorful street scenes and friendly people. You will probably meet people (even Monks) that want to practice their English, and they may invite you to one of their classes. If you get an inviation like that, take the time and do it. Very friendly people. Stop in a teashop for hot cup of tea and some tasty snacks. Any will do, but I like the Yatha teashop on Mahabandoola Road, a few blocks east of Sule pagoda. To beat the heat, you may want to visit the branch of Happy world in People's Park (a few blocks northwest of Shwedagon) and use their swimming pools and water slides. Whenever my friends and I go we are always the only foreigners there. It's a great way to see how the locals relax and have fun. Yangon is great just for absorbing the atmosphere and character of the people. Explore and enjoy.