The good the bad and the ugly
It was only 14 days we had to explore this huge country. As the time was a bit short and we had a lot of distance to cover, sights to see and pagodas to visit, we only went to the on the beaten track places.
What we liked:
- Bagan: still has a village or a town -like feel. Nice green scenery with surrounding mountains.
- Lake Inle: We were expecting a tourist trap, but got a really beautiful scenery and got to experience the importance of the lake for the people living there.
- Train trip Inle - Thazi: Just stunning scenery
- The nature. It is still mostly untouched and so green
What we disliked:
- Myawaddy: nothing there except for people who try to make a living out of you.
- Yangon: Noisy, busy, dirty, unfriendly, rainy and uninspiring
- The street food. Thumbs down for all that deep fried, grease dripping unhealthy stuff.
- All the government fees and foreigner pays more -fees
Our very first impressions were pretty bad as the border town of Myawaddy is quite unpleasant for foreign tourists (meaning it’s expensive and people there see you as a walking money bag). The next stop was Yangon, which didn’t really improve our image that much. It was very noisy, very very dirty, people were busy and quite unfriendly. The street food was not great either.
From there on it went better though. Bagan was beautiful and we could freely explore the temples with bikes. Lake inle was really pretty as well. We will remember the train trip to Mandalay, but Mandalay itself had nothing special to offer.
The impression we got from the people is that the country (and the people) are quite rich. We saw a lot of nice cars and houses. There is a big gap between the rich and the dirt poor though. Everyone seems to be proud of their country and think that everyone is so nice and friendly in Myanmar (not sure we totally agree). There are for sure nice people around, but in most cases when people randomly start talking to you (especially near a tourist attraction), they will ask for a donation in the end.