A Day in Yangon

**I was able to upload pictures from my iPhone but will upload pictures from my camera when I return. 

Walking around the Pagoda certainly gives you a feeling
that you are in Asia. 
Although are bags had not arrived with us in Myanmar, we were not going to let it deter us from enjoying our first day on vacation.  Before we set out, we stopped by our hotel to drop off our carry-ons.  Like other parts of this side of the world, the British Empire had controlled Burma (now Myanmar) in the 19th and 20th century.  This was evident at our colonial style hotel.  I almost expected James Handy’s character from Jumanji to be sipping on Scotch at the bar.

Since we had been eating airplane food for the past 30 hours, our bodies were being ravaged by hunger.  We then set out for our first taste of traditional Burmese food.  The local eatery not only had Burmese food but cuisines from all over South East Asia.  We indulged into a few different types of curry, soups from Thailand and beef dishes from Cambodia.  We of course ordered a few dishes too many as our eyes were much bigger than our stomachs (I will a full post on the Burmese food later on). 

Standing at almost 100 meters, the pagoda
dominates the skyline. 
Afterwards we set out to see the major sites of Yangon.  Yangon is the biggest city, and once capital city, of Myanmar.   It is home to 10% of the 60 million citizens who live in country.  While driving around, the city sparked memories of when I visited Kathmandu, Nepal.  Street vendors lined the roads selling everything from postcards to apples.  Many buildings looked run down, streets lacked infrastructure and wisps of burnt trash filled the air.  Although Yangon displayed the characteristics of a third world city, it never prevented one of its habitants from glaring a smile. 
Room full of Buddah's at the Pagoda. Rooms like this
lined the walkways. 

We stopped at a few of the major sites in Yangon throughout the day.  In the Buddhist religion, many people will visit pagoda’s (or stupas) to pray on a daily basis.  We stopped at a few of the pagoda’s around Yangon including the Shewdagon Pagoda.  The Shewdagon Pagoda is the most sacred Buddhist Pagoda in all of Burma and according to legend, is the oldest pagoda in the world.  At 99 meters, the Shewdagon Pagoda dominates the skyline of Yangon.  After a few hours of touring we made it back to our hotel to rest and then ended the night at a local Chinese restaurant to complete our first day. 


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