How To Be a Burmese in Yangon for One Day?

Myanmar has been one of my top travel bucket list. For years this country has isolated itself from the outside world, and only little was known about what has happened inside this country. Therefore, I always imagine the kind of adventure I would have if I travel to Myanmar, such as how does it feel to be walking around the streets, how does the local food taste like, how do the Burmese look like, and there are just too many curiosity that triggers me to explore this Mysterious Golden Land.

Shwedagon Pagoda

Since almost 90 percent of the population are Buddhist, you would easily find stupas and temples in Myanmar. The first thing of being a Burmese is to let yourself drowning into the culture itself, and visiting the stupas and pagodas in Yangon are one of the great start.

Sule Pagoda

Outside Sule Pagoda

Sule Pagoda is located in the heart of the city, and is part of the city’s economic, politics, and ideology. Sule Pagoda is very close to many other tourist attraction, therefore I always recommend tourist to stay in this area.

Sule Pagoda at night

The pagoda was built before 2500 years ago, which was before the Shwedagon Pagoda. You would make prayers depending on day you were born, there are Monday Corner, Tuesday Corner, and so on.

Originally the structure of the stupa resembles the Indian stupa, however local Burmese culture began to change the shape of the pagoda itself into a more independent Burmese Stupa. Also you need to pay US$2 per person for an entrance fee, and the opening hours is from 4am to 10pm.

The Night Market – Chinatown

Along the streets from Sule Pagoda to Night Market, you would see a lot of Moeslim Mosques, also clothing stores, local food stalls and restaurants.

Streets of Yangon Night Market

Don’t be surprised if u see trashes all over the streets, it’s kinda normal for some markets in asia. The night market in downtown is also known as Chinatown because most of the stores are owned by Chinese. However, the stores closed very early, and even it was named night market, the market actually closed at around 8-9 pm in weekend, so by the time we got there, the stores were mostly closed.

The Bogyoke Aung San Market

Why dressing up as a tourist when you had a chance to be more like a local? The Bogyoke Aung San Market is a top tourist destination, the market sells many Burmese handcrafts, jewelry, antiques as well as clothing.

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Wearing Longyi – at the lake near Karaweik Palace

Myanmar is known to its longyi, a sheet of cloth widely worn in Burma, which is approximately 2 metres long and 80 centimetres wide. The cloth is worn around the waist, running to the feet. Longyi is similar to malay men sarong, however, they are not unisex, so the patterns worn by female and male are different. Paso is the longyi for male, while female longyi is known as htamain.

Shwedagon Pagoda

Shwedagon Pagoda

This is a 2500 years old Pagoda that enshrines four strands of Buddha’s hair, located on west of the Royal Lake on 114 -acre Singuttara Hill in Yangon. The opening hours start from 4am to 10pm and the fee is around US$8.

Shwedagon Pagoda

This impressive Buddhist Pagoda is covered with hundreds of gold plates, in addition, 4531 diamonds are also encrusted on the top of the stupa, the largest is a 72 carat of diamond.

Eventhough there are many Buddhist sites in Asia, they are all relatively different, and so does the Shwedagon Pagoda, which consists of hundred colorful temples, stupas, and statues that reflects the Myanmar architectural fo almost 2,500 years.

Karaweik Palace Restaurant

If you would like to taste the luxury side of Yangon, then you should try visiting Karaweik Palace Restaurant. It is a high-end Yangon restaurant which was culturally and interiorly Burma designed.

The restaurant is called Palace for a reason, it was designed like a ship that docks on the river, with layers of colors and gold, also dragons are accessorized on the top of the ship which reflects the power of the nation itself.

The restaurants serves burmese traditional food, which cost approximately around USD 35 per pax. The price is for dinner buffet, and it starts at 6 pm until 10 pm.

I suggest you not to be late because there is also traditional dances that you would not want to miss! It is a little pricey, but you could experience the food, dance and culture of Burma in one whole night.

My visit to Yangon is full of surprises and excitement, and I hope you would experience more adventure than I did. Here’s some tips and tricks for you while travelling in Yangon:

  1. Bring US Dollars in small changes, $10 $20 and be very extra careful!
  2. Stay in Sule Pagoda areas, it’s very close to tourist attractions there
  3. There’s no MRT or proper busses, so I suggest you commute with Taxi’s. The taxi’s usually do not use meter. So here’s some taxi price that you can use, but try to bargain as you might get cheaper prices than mine!
  • Airport to city ‘around Sule Pagoda areas’ USD 8-10
  • From Sule Pagoda to Bogyoke Aung San Market 1500-2000 Kyat
  • Bogyoke Aung San Market to Shwedagon Pagoda is 1500 Kyat
  • Shwedagon Pagoda back to the city is 2000-2500 Kyat
  • City ‘around Sule Pagoda areas’ to Karaweik Palace 3000-5000Kyat (depending on hours)



P.S: Photos are credited to Rinaldo and Ledia

 

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Let Me Tell You About Halong Bay, The Place Where Dragon Descends

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June 6th 2016 was my first visit to Halong Bay, Vietnam. I used the tour service from one of the hotel I was staying, and believe me when I told you that Halong Bay is really really really beautiful! It takes 4 hours drive from Hanoi city to Halong Bay, and usually the transportation is already included with the tour package you purchase.


Descending Dragon Bay is the meaning of this amazing world heritage site. Previously, there were alot of fishing villages in Halong Bay, however, there are only few left and the remaining floating fishing villages are now being preserved by the Vietnam Government in order to maintain the authenticity of Halong Bay itself.


There are two seasons in Halong Bay, cold winter around the end of the year, and I was there while summer. The weather is undeniably hot and moist, so you are on the right track if you plan on getting yourself tanned!

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There are many tour package that you can choose, click here for more information, but I think 2D1N service is fairly enough for you to taste the beauty of Halong Bay. Unless you are very interested in caves, sun and sea, then there would be not really much thing you could do.

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There are outdoor activities, such as kayak-ing, or do the floating fishing villages sightseeing by commuting with one the bamboo boats rode by the local. However, Halong Bay is not really recommended for diving according to my tour guide, so if you managed to find some good diving spots around here, please do let us know!

 

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The natural landscape of Halong Bay was produced by the repeated regression and transgression of the sea on the limestone karst over the time, and the wonderful stalagmites inside the caves are very very natural and not man-made at all.

The most important thing you have to do while you are here is to explore the caves, and they are amazingly beautiful! You will need to take some stairs and have quite some walk for it, but the beauty definitely worths.


I love the caves because it makes me feel like I am playing some RPG games and stay in the dungeon, especially the stalagmites that were formed of calcium salts deposited by dripping water over millions of years.

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The stalagmites are well known for its legendary forms, such as sacred dragons, Singapore Merlion, Guan Yim Buddha, also some animals, such as monkeys and Turtle who represents longevity.

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The best place to enjoy Halong Bay is when you reach the end of the cave. As you go up the stairs for exit, you will find yourself drowning into this beautiful natural landscape.

Do’s and Dont’s!

  1. The four star cruise rates per pax is around USD 100, you can try to bargain with some travel agency if you buy it on the spot, so if they charge you more than that, please bargain if you are overcharged!
  2. Return transportation from Hanoi to Halong Bay, meals, accomodation in the boat are all included in the tour package, except the tip to the tour guide and boat crew.
  3. Some cruise only provide you one bottled water, and you have to buy all the drinks while dining, so please bring your own bottled water onboard if you are on a budget.

Big Fan of Books and Libraries? Come Visit Boston Public Library While You are Here!


The idea of living is to learn, not only while you were young, but to learn while you still can.


There are many ways for us to learn, some learn by doing, some learn from audio and some learn from books.

 

 If you love reading and is a fan of big and comfortable libraries, Boston Public Library which was located in Boylston St is definitely worth your visit.


The library is so big, peaceful and quiet. I stayed for more than 3-4 hours here last time.


Boston Public Library also provides desktop computers and internet for Library Card Holders.

There are many sections of reading in this library, so you would certainly found books based on your interest.


The opening hours is from 9 morning to 9 evening. However, I suggest you to ask the officer regarding the day of your visit. You could email ask@bpl.org or dial 617-536-5400.

What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas

I finally understood why whatever sin that happens in this city stays in this city. Because when you walk along the street of vegas, you will encounter madness and from everyone.

The Simpson in The Strip

Screaming, laughters surrounded Las Vegas. Need no worries, this sin city turns out to be the safest city on earth, because everybody here care for their own business.

Fremont Street

Casinos, hotels, stripclubs, tattoo parlours, everything are all here in this magnificent land, and you could easily spotted them without even need to look for it.

Golden Nugget Hotel & Casino

The first entry point of Las Vegas is definitely the Fremont Street, because it was the old strip street.

  

Everynight there are performance and attractions in Fremont, and they are free. You could also find many stores and restaurants in here.

 

Treasure Island Hotel & Casino


 

Not only that, the best is yet to come, because everything is so beautiful here, especially the designs and interior of all the hotels and casinos.
 

The Strip Las Vegas

 

All along the strip, casinos and hotels are everywhere. From Bally, Wynn, Caesar Palace, you name it! Many of it are just straight across this very street.

Paris Resort & Casino

New York resorts, paris resorts, you name it! Not only they are beautiful, but the hotels price are affordable, so need not worry about whether or not it cost alot, because it is not expensive.

Las Vegas Sign

If you go straight along the las vegas strip, this would be the end of the point. Many tourist would come here just to take a picture of this las vegas sign.

Deuse Bus The Strip

You will need more than 2 hours walk in the strip, so I suggest you to take Deuse Bus from Fremont street, and the price of 24 hours bus ticket is USD8 and 2 hours for USD6.

  

And this is definitely one of my most favorite view. You could take this shot right in front of Caesar Palace, you could spot this beautiful scene all along the way!

Helicopter Ride to Statue of Liberty and Manhattan New York



New York is all about the streets, the lights at night, the tall skyscrappers, and one of the way to enjoy this magnificent scenery is by having yourself a helicopter ride over the city.

 
 

 
I still remember how beautiful it looked that day, fine weather, sunny, flying above Manhattan and over the Statue of Liberty.

 

 The New York Helicopter ride is located on 6 East River Piers, New York, NY 10004. The heliport is very close to Wall Street or the financial district.

   
 

If you are interested, you could email them for booking to info@newyorkhelicopter.com or dial 212-361-6060.

   
 

The price varies depending on the length of time, but approximately is around USD150. You could check Groupon in case there are promotions.

 
  

 

  

Gratitutes to the pilot are very appreciated, and remember to bring it with you, because your bags would be stored in a locker when you fly.

Definitely Worth a Visit to Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C

  
This is the second largest natural history museum after the biggest one in New York.

You don’t need to pay for admission because it is free, and the museum is located on 10th St. & Constitution Ave. NW; Washington, D.C. 20560

  
There are many sections divided in this museum. You would find the areas of Human Origins, Ocean Hall and Mammals on the First Floor.

Then Mummies, Insects, Gems, Diamond, Fossils and Dinosaurs in the Second Floor.

There would be not only skulls, skeleton or preserved creatures, but some living animals could be found in the museums, such as the butterfly live show, fishes in the aquarium. 

  
My most favorite section is the butterfly areas. There is a special room filled with living butterflies, and if you are a butterfly lover, be sure to check this out, however, you will need to pay for the live show!

This is different from art and history museums, and is more related to our surrounding and everyday lives, so I think that it could catch your attention more.

  

You might need at least more than one hour for a quick glance, but three to four hours time are enough.

  

It would be nice if you could make some contribution by sparing some of your money as a donation to this museum.

  
You do not need to give much, USD 5 is recommended, but it is appreciated if you could give more!

P.S: 고맙습니다  오빠  

One Hour Harvard University Walking Tour and Chilling Out in Harvard Square

Harvard University  
There is no way skipping Harvard in your itineraries if you are in Boston. However, since the university is not small, I think it is wiser to have yourself a guide.

  
Just in front of the Harvard Square, you would find Harvard tours which usually started at 10.30am, 11.30am, 1pm and so on. The duration is around 1 hour and cost only USD10.

   

    
 
 

Harvard Square

  
Harvard Square is just like a market, which is surrounded by cafes, restaurants and shops in this area.

   
  

 
There are starbucks, but if you would like to find yourself somewhere different to chill, then you definitely should try the Crema Cafe.

  
  
Yes, Crema Cafe is very famous and also have quite a pretty long line in the morning. They serve great foods and also have a nice atmosphere, enjoy your day in Harvard!

Winter Morning Stroll in Boston Public Garden and Outdoor Ice Skating Rink in Boston Common

Bonjour! I have always liked the idea of being a local in a stranger’s land. Waking up early like most of them, and spend my day like how they used to.

  
I went to Boston Public Garden early this morning. The Garden is located in downtown, so it is very accessible if you stay in this area, such as Stuart St, Washington St.

This public garden was established in 1837, and is the country’s first botanical garden.
  
You will see these four status along the way from the garden entrance gate. There are around 80 species of plants and 40 types of exotic trees in this garden. 

  
However, since it is winter time, you would not be able to see the beauty of the flower blooms.

  
Meanwhile, there is a lake in the center of the garden, and due to winter time, the lake is half freezed.

  
A bridge is built in the middle of the lake, allowing visitors to pass by the sides of the garden.

  
One of the popular attraction of Boston Public Garden is the Make Way For Duckling Statues of Mrs. Mallard.

You could also find an ice skating rink in Boston Common, which is right across the Boston Public Garden, and the rink is known as Boston Frog Pond.

  
The ice skating rink only opens and available in the winter time because of the cold. In summer, it is open as a pool.

The opening time is Monday 10am-3.45pm, Tuesday until Thursday is 10am-9pm, Friday and Saturday 10am-10pm, and Sunday 10am-9pm.

  
It is always a great idea to start your day with all the nature and fresh air surrounds you. Hope you enjoy your morning walk!

Downtown Boston and Quincy Market in One Night

Boston city is known for its many scholars, college, universities, and that is why it is very common to meet many young people all around the world.

Boston is a small city, and in this blog I will show you how to get around downtown Boston and the famous Quincy Market if you only had one night.

If you arrived in South station by taking Greyhoubd bus, you will see big Chinatown gate just straight in front of the terminal.

  
According to census, there is a high population of Asian Americans living in this area of Boston,  and it is one of the most densely populated residential areas in Boston. 

Walk straight toward the Chinatown gate, and you all along the way you will encounter many chinese and vietnamese restaurants and stores in that area.

After the end of the Chinatown, we will be heading toward Washington street. There would be plenty of fashion stores and retails in this area.

  
The streets are usually filled with people, especially students. However, due to the strong wind and also snow in this week, many preferred to stay at home and which is why somehow the road looks quieter than usual.

  
During Christmas time, lights are filled everywhere on the corner of the streets.

  

Not only fashion stores, but cafes and bars are easily spotted. Not only Starbucks, Dunkin Donuts, but there are also many local taverns and pubs.

  
You will encounter this area, one of the biggest street in Boston, where cars and people were passing through left and right, almost like the Shibuya in Japan.

  
One of the mosty popular bar near the Quincy Market is the Union Bar (Union Oyster House), it is actually famous for its oyster and lobster.

  
After around 20 minutes of slow walk, you will reach the Faneuil Hall Marketplace or known as Quincy Market.

  
The Quincy Market opens 10am until 9pm from Monday to Saturday, and 11am until 6pm on Sunday.

  
Quincy Market food court sells various kinds of food, such a Asian, Italian and even Mexican cuisines.

  
 You can have your dinner in the middle of the market. Sometimes there would be live music performance here.

 
Not only that, there are also stalls that sold accessories, souvenirs and even Harvard Campus apparel.

  
There is also a big Christmas tree decorated with lightbulbs in the centre of the market.

  
You would only need around 2-3 hours for the night, and I suggest you to walk around by foot rather than using busses because sometimes there would be traffic as the streets are very small.

Sometimes it is quite difficult to find a parking lot as well, so why not walk around exploring this city?

I have left my Heart in San Francisco with Free SF Tour

  
If you are planning to come and visit San Francisco but at the same time you are also having limited travel budget, you could try Free SF Tour!
What is a Free SF Tour? It is a fully guided walking tour, starting from Union Square, continued to Chinatown, Financial District, and then Port of San Francisco.

 

The City Hall

 
What is the best thing about this tour? The best thing is definitely because it is FREE and the tour guide Filip is a very fun and caring person!

We learnt alot from this tour, especially the history of San Francisco, and what’s exciting is we are able to meet new people and even make friends from the tour.
 

Great Grandmother of San Francisco

 
The tour starts at 10 oclock in Union Square, and you do not need any bookings or appoinment, so you would just need to come and find Filip in the Union Square, just right in front of the ‘Heart’ of SF.

Although it is free, the tour guide is definitely professional, also gratitutes are very appreciated at the end of the tour.

 In addition, there are 10 bucket lists of things you ought to do while in SF, unfotunately Filip only gave it to those who joins the tour with him, so I wouldn’t be able to share em to you! Enjoy the tour!