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monks on u bein bridge
Asia Destinations Myanmar

U Bein Bridge: Bridge to another world

“Shhh! Stop talking! Sunset. Bridge. Look!” Our boat rower punctuated his demands like a Lieutenant-General. We straightened to attention at his rebuke and brought our camera viewfinders to our eyes, fingers ready on the shutter button. It was indeed…

monkeys at mount popa
Asia Destinations Myanmar

Eerie magic at Mount Popa

They were everywhere, cluttering the staircases leading up Mount Popa. A mother held her baby close to her chest as we walked by, eyeing us curiously and suspiciously. A child slid recklessly down the banister. A portly fellow, slumped…

Asia Destinations Myanmar

Bagan by horse and cart

Bagan is Myanmar’s answer to Angkor Wat. Many tourists choose to explore the 42 square-kilometre archaeological area on bicycles, but given the stifling heat and the novelty of alternative transport, my sister and I decided to see the sights…

Asia Destinations Myanmar

A DIY hike in Kalaw

Kalaw is a small hilly town only a few hours’ (awesome!) drive from Nyaungshwe near Inle Lake. The town is centred around a market of rusty tin sheds and the glittering gold and silver stupa of Aung Chan Tha Zedi. Whilst…

Asia Destinations Myanmar

Doing it local: Inle Lake to Kalaw

Sometimes when you travel a country, you can feel like you’re being led on a sanitised tourist trail removed from local experiences. Not so in Myanmar. When my sister and I decided to travel from Nyaungshwe on the edge…

Asia Destinations Myanmar

Traditional Myanmar puppet show

The ceiling lights didn’t dim, they were swiftly extinguished, so that only the velvet curtained stage before us was illuminated. The crowd – all seven of us – were hushed as a tape deck clicked on. A crackling, poncy…

Asia Destinations Myanmar

Shwedagon Pagoda, Yangon

A chorus of worshippers chant hymns and wafting incense perfumes the air. Maroon-robed monks perambulate the central stupa, some twirling umbrellas thoughtfully. Others more grounded in the real world chat on their phones or take happy snaps. This is…

Asia Destinations Myanmar

Kindness in Yangon

Yangon conjures visions of Myanmar’s golden past, a country rich with intellectual life and bustling with visitors from near and far. I’ve been told Yangon used to be a major airport hub between the East and West during the…