Category: Mandalay

Around Mandalay

Took a car with Mr. Linn and Felix and Kris around the towns around Mandalay.

First we saw a very famous temple and almost got lost in it. It was called Mahamuni and cost 1000 for a camera fee. It was quite beautiful but easy to get lost in.  I bought an onion (?) paint paining for 2,000 which he made in less than 5 minutes which I think was quite amazing.

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Next was more towards Amarapura to where the monks live that we can visit anytime, but lunch is best because most came out and wait. Felt kind of bad, except that people take pictures of me all the time. Some of the monks looked to be five years old.

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Next was straight to Sagaing…well if you count the huge traffic jam for the nut festivals last day.

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To get to Sagaing we had to cross a bridge and then climb a hill to reach another very famous pagoda with many Burmese tourists who wanted my photo. This temple was larger and just as beautiful. They had rabbit and frog statues too. Also clothes stores at the top which I found odd. A smaller shrine was to the right but that also looked like a care takers house because there were clothes (non monk) hanging to dry. On the way up and down there are many other pagodas and very points.

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Next we drove to the boat point for Inwa and had lunch (noodle soup) for 2,000 kayat. Many girls harassed us to buy jewelry. I said I had some and one girl said hers was more beautiful so I acted offended which made her laugh. One looked 4 but was 7 (malnourished?).  The boat was 800 kayat there and back. Once there you need a horse cart for 2000 per person. I liked our guy and horse a lot.

First were ruins which I thought were amazing, but the whole ‘island’ is basically ruins so it loses its special-ness. In this one Buddha’s face had been rubbed off or fallen off.

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The monastery was made of teak wood and you can still smell it very strongly. This one is so old it has something’s in it that you don’t see elsewhere because of changed times.

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The clock tower was sad because you could no longer go up although it looked like the leaning tower of Pisa.

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Next, and last, was another old temple, but this one was white. Great views.

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Then we took the boat back but first we saw a girl getting off who wanted nothing more than a handshake and to say thank you. I bought 2 bracelets for 1000 kayat (originally 1 for 2000) and mine were more expensive because of the elephants.

Sunset at U Bein bridge was not too special (maybe because of a cloud) but the bridge was neat and I had my photo taken a ton more. It’s the longest teak bridge in the world. A sign there for locals sounded like a threat to treat tourists nice or else. The boats were beautiful.

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We learned that government jobs pay 40,000 kayat a month which is only good for poorly educated people who have no family to support.

Booked the bus for 8:30, pickup at 7:30 for 12000 kayat which is more than De Anne paid

The truck/taxi was a few minutes late to pick me and some others up but we got to the bus at 8:00 and left shortly after 8:30 making more stops to pick up some locals. Classic rock and strange movies played in the morning and hip hop after our 20 minute lunch stop.


SE Asia 004Easy at the airport for immigration, customs exchange and taxi. It was only 4,000 kayat for 45-60 minute because it was shared. I thought we were at the other airport and I’m glad I did start walking! Met a Chinese girl and a Myanmar man who were both very nice. 12USD a night for fan and shared bathroom at ET Hotel. I had some Wi-Fi issues though.

At the hotel I made some friends and, in the end, we booked a taxi tour for tomorrow. At the same time I found out that the slow boat to Bagan is looking like a no go because the front desk said its only Wednesday and Sundays.

Walked around a lot looking for exchange places and an ATM, finding delicious (300 kayat) noodles along the way and ending up at the royal palace.

I was told it’s not great but I liked it, even though I felt sick after getting there. Lots of gold and the one very tall building that you could go up (I couldn’t) but you only really saw greenery up there. The lady who sold the tickets said it was under construction but I didn’t see any. The military feel around it was different, as De Anne said.

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Kris and Felix went onto the hill but I didn’t feel well enough so I took a motorbike to ET for 1,500. Shower wasn’t great because someone else stole the water, but it was hot and they give you a towel (and toilet paper). I’m said I missed the sunset but I would have been unhappy, tired and maybe thrown up or gotten really sick.

I woke up many times because of heat and sand but felt a lot better. Breakfast was eggs, 3 pieces of toast with strawberry jam or butter and tea or coffee.