Doug & Annette Halleen

Doug and Annette

Doug & Annette Halleen

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Asia » Burma » Yangon Region » Yangon February 3rd 2016

Our Final Entry!!! Day 24-Wednesday-February 3 Inle Lake-Yangon We had a 5:45 wake-up call and got the bags out in time. After breakfast, we boarded the buses at 7:00 for the ride to Heho Airport for our 9:30 flight to Yangon and back to the Sule Shangri-La Hotel after another long and traffic-congested ride. Traffic is bad here almost any time of day. We got checked into the hotel and split an order of fish & chips. Doug went down to the Concierge and got the stuff that we stored there while in Inle Lake. We then rested for the afternoon. Doug worked on the blog. Later on we decided to order room service. Annette wanted that great grilled salmon that she had during our last stay. Doug had French onion soup and a big chicken ... read more
No...this way
A different temple

Asia » Burma » Eastern Burma » Kalaw February 2nd 2016

Day 23-Tuesday-February 2 After breakfast we met at the dock again at 8:30 and boarded the same boat with Rick and Jeanine. The yellow group headed out into the lake and came upon some morning fishermen. We got some nice photos. We then saw men filling their boats with more underwater vegetation. Our first stop today was the Nyaung Shwe 5-day market, only open here every 5th day. It rotates between different locations over a five day period. It was a very interesting spot for seeing many fabulous images. Women and men from various hill tribes who live in the Inlay region come to sell their home crafts, products, fruits, fish and vegetables in this market. Being here today was a great experience. Next, we walked over to the Hpaung Daw Oo Pagoda. Situated on Inle ... read more
Casting their net
Balancing act
Close up

Asia » Burma » Eastern Burma » Kalaw February 1st 2016

Day 22-Monday-February 1 Buckle-up…this will be a wild day! We awoke this morning with our room not any warmer. Doug called the front desk and asked about the heater problem. He was told the units in each bungalow were only air conditioning and not heaters…oh well. So, as it does get warm here in the daytime, we’ll turn our units off when we return from our excursions in the afternoon to preserve some of the warmth before sunset when it starts to get cool. Then they won’t be constantly blowing cold air into the room. After rising, Doug looked outside and saw a couple hot-air balloons in the distant sky. Following breakfast, we met the group at 8:30 down at the pier adjacent to the Sunset Bar and we split up into our original yellow and ... read more
Sunset Bar
Floating garden beds
Ye Min waves

Asia » Burma » Yangon Region » Yangon January 31st 2016

Day 21-Sunday-January 31 This morning we checked out of the Sule Shangri-La and got on the bus for the airport at 8:30 to catch our flight at 11:00 to Inle Lake. Inle Lake is located in the heart of the Shan Plateau. It is a beautiful highland lake, 2,950 feet above sea level. The lake is 13.7 miles long and 6.2 miles across, and inhabited by many different ethnic nationals of the area. The Intha people are the lake dwellers who are unique for their leg rowing. Leg rowed traditional boats are the main ceremonial attractions of Inle Lake. The Intha people are hard-working. Cigar-rolling and weaving are the women's work. One tradition says that the Intha people living on Lake Inle are the descendants of those who fled from Dawei, about 500 miles to the ... read more
Heho Airport
Our bags
Ye Min and Duli

Asia » Burma » Yangon Region » Yangon January 30th 2016

Day 20-Saturday-January 30 This morning we woke up early to get our bags in the hallway. After breakfast, we boarded 2 buses for our 7 hours ride to Yangon. We made a stop for lunch at an interesting place and had a small package lunch that was prepared by the ship. Upon reaching Yangon, we got involved with the usual traffic congestion. We drove by a lot of present and former military compounds and the driver took us past Aung San Suu Kyi’s home that showed the NLD (National League for Democracy) party signage. We finally arrived at the Sule Shangri La around 3:00. After checking in, Duli gave us a briefing about the different departure information as a number of folks were going different places. We relaxed a bit and decided to have room service ... read more
Dining area
Serving staff
Our lunch area

Asia » Burma » Mandalay Region » Irrawaddy River January 29th 2016

Day 19-Friday-January 29 We arrived in Pyay this morning and set off on our final excursion. Present day Pyay is located at the confluence of the Ayeyarwaddy and Nawin Rivers. The British Irrawaddy Flotilla Company established the current town in the late 19thcentury on the Ayeyarwaddy River as a trans-shipment point for cargo between upper and lower Burma. Pyay is one of the most famous tourist destinations in Myanmar and is home to more than 80 gilded pagodas, including the Payagyi Pagoda which we will see this morning. Our first stop after leaving the boat and boarding the bus was the ancient Sri Ksetra Pyu City Gate and wall built between the 4-7th century that encompassed Pyu City, an area of over 5 square miles. We then went onto the Sri Ksetra Museum which held many ... read more
Ancient city wall
Ancient wall
Annette on the wall

Asia » Burma » Mandalay Region » Irrawaddy River January 27th 2016

Day 17-January 27-Wednesday- This morning we got up early to serve Alms for the monks in Magwe at 8:15. They were given cooked rice and we gave them each a covered plate that included a variety of items. At 9:00 we each had a ride in a trishaw that caravanned around town. It was a blast with 50 trishaws in a row and our peddlers all wearing the same orange T-shirt. We got lots of looks from the locals! After we spent about 40 minutes on our ride, they dropped all of us off in the central market area and gave us plenty of time to shop and take photos. In areas like this, we are the ones getting attention from the locals. We walked back to the ship by 11:00 for the sail away to ... read more
Victoria, Annette & Doug
Monks arriving

Asia » Burma » Mandalay Region » Irrawaddy River January 26th 2016

Day 16-January 26-Tuesday-This morning we set sail for Magwe. The Magwe Region is Myanmar’s 2nd largest of its seven regions located in the central part of the country. It is bordered by the Sagaing Region to the north, the Mandalay Region to the east, the Bago Region to the south, and the Rakhine and Chin States to the west. The capital is the city of Magwe. The majority of the population is Bamar, with very small numbers of other ethnicities. This region produces most of Myanmar’s natural gas and petroleum. Agriculture is also important, with the principal crops being rice, millet, maize, sunflowers, beans, tobacco, onions and potatoes. At 3:15 this afternoon we took a bus tour that included a brief stop at General Aung San “Bogyoke” Statue for photos. He was very instrumental in Burma’s ... read more
Mud volcano
Dragon image

Asia » Burma » Mandalay Region » Bagan January 25th 2016

Day 13-Monday-January 25- When we arose early this morning, we could see about 15 hot-air balloons in the hazy distant sky. After breakfast we departed the boat to board minivans with 4 to a car and drove up a long dirt road to the town of Tant Kyi Taung, famous for its impressive Tant Kyi Taung Pagoda. This prominent Burmese Buddhist pagoda near the historic city of Bagan was built in 1059 by King Anawratha. The pagoda is believed to house four of Gautama Buddha’s teeth, donated by King Vizaraba of Sri Lanka. The pagoda is 90 feet tall. It is said that this is the location where the royal white elephant bearing the tooth relics rested for the second time. There were beautiful views of the Ayeyarwaddy River and Bagan. Before we drove back to ... read more
Arriving in Tant Kyi Taung
Women hauling bricks

Asia » Burma » Mandalay Region » Bagan January 24th 2016

Day 12-Sunday-January 24- Today Annette & Doug decided to do different excursions, Annette taking the Bagan city tour and Doug taking the Mount Popa tour. We both departed the boat at 9:00am. Before we started our separate tours, both buses met at Thatbyinnyu Temple for a few exterior photos from a distance. It is a famous temple, the tallest in Bagan at just over 200 feet. It is shaped like a cross, but is not symmetrical. Ye Min was Annette's Bagan tour guide and Duli went to Mount Popa. On the Mount Popa tour, there were only about 18 on our bus. Mount Popa, 37 miles southeast of Bagan is an extinct volcano and the oasis of the arid zone. On a clear day it can be seen from the Ayeyarwady River. The soil is naturally ... read more
Thatbyinnyu Temple
Good morning Annette
Ox at work

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