Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Road to Mandalay (part 4)

Let's continue on the Day 2.

The boat was actually docking at the first night at the pier.   In the morning, there was an offering to the monk at about 6 am.  I decided to skip it and prefer to have more time to sleep.

While we were having the breakfast, the boat was starting to cruise down stream of Mighty Irrawaddy River.  After the breakfast, we were transferred to the small boat to go onhore to the city of Ava or Inwa, which is the ancient capital of Burmese kingdoms.

Notice that the staffs how to hold bamboo poles for us to hold while we were walking on the wooden plank.   Once onshore, I felt like I travel hundreds years back in time.  The city is still very ancient.   The horse carts were waiting for us to bring us to few tourist places in this ancient cities.

Interestingly, there were many local girls tried to sell souvenirs to us.  While we were riding on the horse cart, they took their bicycles and follow us.

This is the horse cart which I rode.  The boy is only 19.  He speaks some simple English.  Interestingly, when we were on the way back to the pier, we passed by his house.  He whistled and this baby horse following him.  He told us, the horse which pulled our cart is actually the mother.   This baby horse continuously following us without even being directed.

Our first stop of the day was Bagaya Monestry, which was build on 1834 AD.    The monestry is built using a Teakwood.

The monastery is still used for schooling for the poor people around the area.  The monk is station there to teach the kids.  

Myanmar alphabets

The next stop was the Watch Tower which was build in 1882.   Suprisingly, the tower is still standing there.   

The final stop is Maha Aung Mye Bon Zan Monastery (Me Nu Oak Kyaung) which also built in 1822.  It is a big complex.   The main structure also have a food storage below its structures.

We went back to the boat for the lunch and spend the rest of the day on the boat while the boat sailing downstream to Bagan.

Day 3

The next morning we arrived at Bagan.  However, unlike in Mandalay, there is no proper based here.   The boat is just docking in the middle of the rivers.  This is why in my earlier post, I suggested to get in and off in Mandalay.   You need to take the small boat to go onshore.  Also there is a steep staircase you need to claim before you can get a land transportation.

We meet the newest ship of the Orient Express Cruise,  the Orcaella, which just made her maiden trip from Yangon the day before.  She is a beautiful ship.

In the mean time, from far, we was told the house by the shore is the Aung San Suu Kyi brother house.  It is huge house.

The first stop of the day was the Bagan Market.  It is a busy market.  You can find anything from the vegetable and fruits, and also clothes.  I guess, the people of Bagan shop here.




The next stop is the start of Temple and Pagoda visit in Bagan.   First stop was at  Shwezigon Pagoda.   It is quite common to see many seller just in front of the Pagoda.  Same happen here in this Pagoda.  It is very magnificent structures.

Interestingly, the Pagoda is actually displaying the numbers which I believe it is donation and expenses of the Pagoda.

The road in City of Bagan looks very clean and quite orderly.

The next stop is Anada Phaya (Ananda Temple), which has 4 standings Buddha statues.

I can only find 3 out of 4 standing Buddha imagines in my camera.


Before lunch break, we made a short visit to Lacuerware shop where the owner (with interesting moustache) told us about the process of making it.   He claimed that there are many Japanese visited his shop to learn about the traditional technique.  This was also the place that I made my first credit card transaction in Myanmar.  3 banks are installing the machine for his shop.  So the bank believe there will be quite some transactions from his shop.

We retreated to the boat for lunch and rest.  The final excursion in the evening will start around 4pm.  we supposed to see sunset, however since the weather was not cooperative, we just made a visit to the temple and the traditional village.

We visited Gu Byauk Gyi temple.  

Manuha Temple which there is a big rice bowl where people donate the rice.


Final stop, we visited the traditional village where people still living in very traditional way without electricity.

Once we were back to boat, the farewell dinner is prepared.  Instead of buffet style, the dinner was served ala carte.  Here is the farewell dinner menu.
And the final entertainment was the puppet show.

On the final day, we were sent to the Nyaung Oo airport which serves Bagan City.  It is small airport but functional and clean.  Do not expect anything here. 


When we got our flight ticket, we are questioning why the flight from Bagan to Yangon will take so long (more than 2 hours).  Later on we found that the flight in Myanmar works circularly.  The flights started from Yangon to Ngaung Oo (Bagan), then Mandalay, then Heho and finally Yangon.

Here is our boarding pass and the flight which took us touring Myanmar.

Drink was served on the shorter flight (NYU-MDL and MDL-HEH).  On longer route HEH-RGN, a refreshment was served.

Finally we arrived in RGN - Yangon, and a limousines will take us to the domestic terminal.  Please take note, the international and domestic terminals are separated.  It took us USD10 to get a cab to send us from domestic to international terminal.

This is the plane which took me back to BKK.  HS-TAZ, A300-600 which is becoming very rare these days.

And just to complete the trips, when I flew back from BKK to SIN, I saw this plane with the original Thai Airways logo.

Hope you guys enjoy it.  Thanks for the visit.