Blogs from Mandalay, Mandalay Region, Burma, Asia - page 8


Asia » Burma » Mandalay Region » Mandalay March 15th 2011

Myanmar Part 2 This 'blog' is the second describing our time in Myanmar (Burma to some). If you missed the first one, you can find it #1 here . We wrote in the first part of this - our holiday 'blog' - that when entering Yangon we immediately knew we'd stepped into another 'space'. When moving up to Mandalay, our perceptions were further reinforced. Myanmar people operate on a quite different way-of-life to their SE Asian neighbours. For example, on the subject of timetables, we learnt there is a table, but all-too-often no-one really operates to the applicable time. On friendliness, there is no doubt that the Myanmar people are by far the happiest and friendliest people we've ever met. If two or more are together, then there will rarely not be a ... read more
Mandalay taxi
U Bien's bridge

Asia » Burma » Mandalay Region » Mandalay March 1st 2011

We arrived early and it was still dark, again we had booked our hotel in advance at the UFO guesthouse and again received a pickup from the bus station, in all my time travelling I’d very rarely considered booking ahead, it really does save a lot of hassle when you are dumped in a new town in the middle of the night with zero bearings. I would consider doing this more often, but in some cases it might mean having to pick the phone up for myself and physically speak to someone....wouldn’t want to come across as a sell out now would I. Sleep was minimal on the bus so upon arrival at a slightly chillier Mandalay we took a few hours kip before heading out to explore the streets of Mandalay. In the reception area ... read more
DSC02844 (600x800)

Asia » Burma » Mandalay Region » Mandalay February 23rd 2011

I caught the 5.30am bus to Mandalay then caught a pickup from the station to my guesthouse. I was actually lead there by a young guy who was on the bus with me. I seem to meet a lot of young men from Kyaukme who are very keen to improve their English so that they can get into tourism or improve their prospects for work. Some of these guys hold English and computer classes. I caught up with Aitan again and went for a walk to the river where he introduced me to a trishaw driver who is a friend of his. The prospects in the future are not too good for trishaw drivers with the introduction of hundreds of thousands of cheap Chinese motorbikes. There are about 20,000 trishaw drivers in Mandalay and the work ... read more
Bus in Mandalay
U Bein's Bridge

Asia » Burma » Mandalay Region » Mandalay February 4th 2011

Mandalay 18 januari 2011 Vanochtend zijn we, na een goed ontbijt, fietsen gaan huren om ons wat sneller en verder te kunnen verplaatsen door Mandalay. Eerst zijn we bij het klooster van de monnik die we gisteren ontmoet hebben langs gegaan. Hier werden we met open armen ontvangen en hebben we nogmaals ontbeten. Onze gastheer, U Nanda, zegt erg blij te zijn met ons bezoek en we hebben lange tijd over vanalles zitten praten. In de gemeenschappelijke ruimte kwamen steeds meer monnikken even kijken wie die vreemde blanken waren. Sommige vonden het erg spannend en bleven op een afstand, anderen vroegen erg beleefd of ze met ons mochten praten om hujm engels te oefenen. Het was een mooie ochtend en een hele bijzondere ervaring die we nooit meer vergeten. Na ons bezoek aan U Nanda ... read more

Asia » Burma » Mandalay Region » Mandalay February 3rd 2011

As I said in the last blog, the road to Mandalay was long.. But unlike the roads in Laos, this was a proper highway so at least the ride wasn't that bumpy. We had a nightbus leaving from just north of Yangon at 8.30 and we were dropped off way ahead of departure time by our taxi. Luckily our ticket had a company name on it because the bus station was about as big as a large town. We were the only foreigners on the bus so we were also a prime target for the salespeople....water, Chiclets, chips...but we'd already bought our snacks back in Yangon so we had to disappoint them... Our bus looked good, an old Japanese bus with comfy and bright velvet seats. The company even handed out toothbrushes and water! This was ... read more
Our horsecart in Inwa
View from the U-Bein bridge in the morning
"Now with you!"

Asia » Burma » Mandalay Region » Mandalay December 16th 2010

26/11/2010 - 29/11/2010 From Bago I took the overnight bus to Mandalay. Luckily someone already warned me about the f* cold airco which is on all night, still caught a cold though.. To the contrary of most people I actually liked the city with its dusty roads. Okay it has a more busier atmosphere, mostly because of all the motorcycles (opposed to Yangoon where only government people are allowed to have a motorcycle). However i's a nice city to explore with a bicycle and so I did. I rented a bicycle from Morris, local guy always hanging around outside the guesthouse. Morris turned out to be more then just the bicycle rental guy, he became more my personal local guide taking me to the cheap local good street restos, having tea with the locals, helping me ... read more
mahamoni pagoda and its golden boedha
me and morris at local tea house
the wooden monastery

Asia » Burma » Mandalay Region » Mandalay December 2nd 2010

The road to Mandalay was not a comfortable one and very far from the wonderfully luxurious double-decked buses of South America. The narrow, hard seat had minimal legroom (even for me) and reclined only a couple of degrees. This made for a torrid night sleep in which I woke up every hour with a numb behind and knees screaming to be out-stretched. The silver lining was that I was treated to sunrise from the bus. The big orange ball rose over farming fields and rice paddies as the bus eventually rumbled into Mandalay at 7am. Taxi drivers held boards of hotels, hoping to lure customers to them. I had made friends with a couple of Italian girls (Carla and Antonella) on the bus who were heading to a hotel so we shared the taxi fare into ... read more
When Mikey met Snakey
Big Sucker
Lovely Drive

Asia » Burma » Mandalay Region » Mandalay November 29th 2010

We were so excited when Owen and his friend Louie said they would take us to Amurapura because we really wanted to go there but getting there on our own seemed tricky. With locals on our side, it was so easy to hop from bus to bus and very cheap! Amurapura is where U Bein's bridge is located, the world's longest teak walking bridge (over 1km) and is over 200 years old! It is a famous landmark in Myanmar and is very picturesque at sunset - of course we wanted to go there and take some pictures!! We take a couple different local buses, pay 400k each and it takes about an hour to get to Amurapura, then we walk 15 minutes down to the bridge. There is almost no way we would have figured this ... read more
U Bein's Bridge

Asia » Burma » Mandalay Region » Mandalay November 28th 2010

After a long cold (their buses run on MAX A/C the entire time, then have to stop every few hours to cool off the engine because it is overheating. Dress for wintery cold when travelling on buses in Myanmar!) night bus to Mandalay, we arrive at 6am. With the lack of tourist info for Myanmar, nearly every tourist here has the same Lonely Planet book and so all travellers on our bus make way to the same guesthouse recommended in the book. We figured since it was off-season and a lesser-travelled country, reservations would not be needed. We were wrong. After 3 hotels, we find a room at ET Hotel where we pay $12 for a double room with bathroom and breakfast included. The first thing we do is nap for a few hours to rejuvenate ... read more
When the bus is full, ride on top!
Spring shop
Kids playing

Asia » Burma » Mandalay Region » Mandalay October 11th 2010

Arriving in Mandalay was a full scale assault on the senses, little do you realise what a universal uniform jeans and t-shirts are until you come to a place where noone wears them. Instead, the longyi (similar to a sarong) is worn by men and women in a variety of styles. Catching the end of rainy season and a typhoon for good measure we were knee high in flood water. After resigning ourselves to the fact that we were going to get wet feet, we lost our shoes and tried our best to follow the examples of the locals and just get on with things. During my time in Burma I saw only one official, a police officer doing anything of any value. This was a boy that could be no older than 15 (believe me ... read more
money so worthless that you can make decorations out of it
lunch time
Abigail being thrashed at table football

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