Backpacking Southeast Asia Tenth Stop: Yangon, Myanmar

Last Updated on January 26, 2021 by Tina

After spending three days in Bagan, I traveled back to Yangon on an overnight bus. My flight out of Myanmar is from Yangon so I had to go back there. I think I have not mentioned in my previous post that you can enter and leave Myanmar by overland border crossing.  Filipinos can visit Myanmar visa-free for 14 days if entering and departing from Yangon, Mandalay, or Naypyidaw International Airports. So instead of worrying about getting a visa, I decided to just take a flight.

The overnight bus left Bagan at 8:00 in the evening and arrived in Downtown Yangon around 7:00 in the morning the following day. We were dropped off near Sule Pagoda. From there, I took a taxi to Baobabed Hostel.

Day 1

My bed in the hostel wasn’t ready yet when I arrived because it was too early to check-in. And unlike Baobabed Hostel Inle Lake, the one in Yangon doesn’t have a complimentary early check-in room. But they do have a tiny common room with bean bags where you can hang out and take a nap while waiting for the check-in time. I took a nap while waiting.

Common Area Baobabed Yangon
The common area at Baobabed Hostel Yangon

When I woke up I had breakfast at the cafe downstairs. While eating I posted some Instagram Stories. My roommate in Inle Lake saw my story and sent me a message. She asked if I was in Yangon. Apparently, she is in Yangon too. We agreed to meet for lunch.

Shan Noodles
My favorite dish in Myanmar, the shan noodles

We had lunch at Pansuriya. It is a gallery restaurant that serves delicious traditional Burmese food. We had a great catch-up and we stayed there for maybe three hours because it rained hard while we were having lunch.

Pansuriya
Inside Pansuriya

After lunch, I decided to visit Shwedagon Pagoda. It is the most famous landmark in Yangon. It is the most sacred Buddhist pagoda in Myanmar and was built 2600 years ago. The receptionist at the hostel told me it is a good spot to watch the sunset but because it rained that day, I was not able to witness that. But I stayed there until it got dark because it’s nice to watch the sky change its color and when it gets dark the pagoda is lit up by spotlights.

After visiting Shwedagon Pagoda, I went back to the hostel and rested early. I was planning to go out and get a massage but I was too lazy that night, I decided to sleep instead.

Related post: Myanmar Travel Guide for Solo Travelers

Day 2

I missed the free breakfast at the hostel for day 2 because I had a bad night. I had a fever and I kept waking up to go to the toilet because I had a bad stomach. When I woke up in the morning, I had a very sore body. I went to take a shower and after taking a shower, I think I passed out. I was feeling very weak so I lay down for a while but then I fell asleep. When I woke up it was already past 10 in the morning.

It was raining again which made me lazy to go sightseeing. I decided to just go to the post office to send postcards from Yangon and Bagan. I didn’t have time to visit the post office when I was in Bagan because I had so much fun exploring the temple area with the e-bike. From the post office, I went to Uncle Tetsu to have a cheesecake. After that, I went back to the hostel because I still have a headache.

Related Post: Postcards From My Southeast Asia Backpacking Trip

My friend who knew about my whereabouts while backpacking told me to go see a doctor if it was that bad (he even sent me a Google Map of a clinic in Yangon). I told him I can still handle it and instead I went to the pharmacy to buy some medicines. I didn’t know what medicine to buy because I’m not sure if the ones we have in the Philipines are available there too. I’m surprised that they do have Biogesic and Immodium.

My flight to Hanoi was at 6:50 in the evening but I decided to go to the airport early because I was told that traffic in Yangon is really bad. I took a Grab taxi (that costs MMK 7600) even though taking the bus would have been way cheaper (MMK 500 only) because I still wasn’t feeling well.

Related Post: Backpacking Southeast Asia Eight Stop: Mandalay, Myanmar

Expenses

As mentioned in my earlier posts about this backpacking trip, my challenge was to try to live on a US$ 20 per day budget. But I failed in my previous stops and I’m pretty sure I’ll fail here as well. But I’ll still be sharing with you my expenses during the trip so you have an idea of how much you need when you go on a similar trip in the future.

I brought US dollars for the trip. The official currency of Myanmar is the Myanmar Kyat (MMK). The conversion rate is MMK 1510 for US$ 1. Just to be consistent with my earlier posts, I’ll be using the conversion rate of Php 52 for US$ 1 for this post (it was the conversion rate for Php to US$ when I was on the trip).

Day 1

Grab Taxi to the hostel- US$ 1.66 (MMK 2500)

1 bed in a female-only dorm- US$ 7.1 (PHP 368.27)

Breakfast (Shan Noodles + Coke)- US$ 1.99 (MMK 3000)

Lunch (Vermicelli Noodles + Coke)- US$ 3.64 (MMK 5500)

Grab Taxi to Shwedagon Pagoda- US$ 1.79 (MMK 2700)

Entrance Fee to Shwedagon- US$ 6.62 (MMK 10000)

Grab Taxi to Hostel- US$ 1.85 (MMK 2800)

Dinner (Fried rice + coke)- US$ 2.32 (MMK 3500)

Day 1 total expenses: US$ 26.97

Day 2

Grab Taxi to Post Office- US$ 1.19 (MMK 1800)

Stamps- US$ 3.97 (MMK 6000)

Postcard- US$ 0.66 (MMK 1000)

Taxi to Uncle Tetsu- US$ 1.52 (MMK 2300)

Cheesecake + coke at Uncle Tetsu- US$ 2.32 (MMK 3500)

Taxi to Hostel- US$ 1.26 (MMK 1900)

Lunch- US$ 1.66 (MMK 2500)

Immodium- US$ 0.66 (MMK 1000)

Biogesic- US$ 0.13 (MMK 200)

Taxi to Airport- US$ 5.03 (MMK 7600)

Day 2 total expenses: US$ 18.04

I did pass Day 2 for this stop, but only because I didn’t include the airfare to Hanoi, the bus fare to the hostel in Hanoi, the dinner cost, and the hostel cost.

Stay tuned for my next post about what I did in Hanoi and if I passed the challenge there. If you have any questions regarding this trip, feel free to leave a comment. Subscribe to my blog if you don’t want to miss any of my posts. And please follow my Facebook page @iwentanyways and like my Instagram accounts @iwentanyways and @tnadeperalta for updates. You can also check out my backpacking highlights in my IG @tnadeperalta.

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