yangon

Dalah and Twante, Myanmar

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Day trip to Dalah and Twante

Looking through Lonely Planet guidebook, I came across about the villages the Delta Region, Dalah and Twante. This is the area affected by Cyclone Nargis in 2008.

I tried to find more info on travelling there, but seems like there are only 3 travel blogs write up on it. The info is the same as in LP. Ferry ride to Dalah and then you can pay for local to give you ride on a bike to Twante. But not much other info like name of villages there, how to navigate there, how long will it take to travel around both areas etc. But I’m still keen for an adventure there.

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The market area near the ferry terminal

Dalah is just 10min ferry ride away from Yangon but it’s a world apart.

Right after breakfast, I headed over to the ferry terminal, which is near Strandt Hotel in the morning.

The ticket can be bought at the terminal and departs every 20min. It is $4 USD, including return trip.

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Walking around the area first before boarding the ferry.

As I was walking around waiting for departure, a local approached me. Usually I avoid small talk, especially those who seem to only approach tourists. But I kinda let my guard down this time cuz she asked if I was Muslim and gave salaam to me. She said that she could bring me around and since I was not too sure how I’ll explore Dalah and Twante later on. As I was still not sure what it will be like after I arrive on Dalah later on, I eventually I agreed for her bring me around.

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About to board the ferry

Just as we were about to board the ferry, Sharifah bumped into her friend, Rahman. So called a coincident, but later in the day I suspected that it was all part of the scam plan.

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Looking sweet and innocent, but little did I know they had already targeted me as their scam victim (more on that later).

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Departing from Yangon

On board the ferry, it is a very unique local experience with hawkers calling out selling their products. But still a comfortable ride.

Arrived at Dalah.

Upon arriving in Dalah, Sharifah and Rahman made arrangement for motorbikes to bring us around. Plan of the day was fishing village, rice plantation, lunch at Rahman’s place, ride to Twante, pagoda and pottery village. I can’t recall how much was the agree price though, but we definitely agreed for certain hourly rate for day trip to Dalah and Twante.

Sharifah and Rahman were pillion riders of another motorbikes cuz they said they wanted to follow me around (or so I thought… because later on I realised, this is all part of the scam (again)).

First up was the fishing village…

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Yangon Circle Line

One of the best way to explore Yangon and immerse yourself with the locals is to get on board the Circle Line Train!

It’s a 3 hr train ride for about 200 kyat. You can buy your ticket at the station itself, at platform 6 or 7. Take note that foreigners will need your passport to buy a ticket.

Be prepared to be amazed by how old-school the station is… From the station’s colonial look to even handwritten schedule and vintage ticket! If you’re adventurous, you can drop at any station, do some sightseeing and catch the next train to continue your journey.

Signs are clearly positioned at the station. You’ll just need to go over to Platform 6 or 7 to purchase your ticket and board the train.

While waiting for the train, I made small talk with the conductor and found out that the locals prefer non-aircon train to air-cond train.

Waiting for train at Platform 7

Me: What time is the next train?
Conductor: an hour later, but you’re lucky to catch this one. It’s the last local train for today.
Me: Local train? Then the one an hr later?
Conductor: oh, that one is air-conditioned. But people here don’t like it. They like local train better.
Me: but why don’t they like air-cond train?
Conductor: *looking bewildered that I don’t seem to get it why aircond train is not good* oh, aircond train has windows… it’s closed. Not good. They don’t like it.

Riiiighhhtt. So, the locals don’t like aircond train cuz the windows are close. Hmmm, I’m really puzzled by his response but was eventually enlightened when I was on board  it.

Just look at how they sit. Not your typical facing the opposite seat, like in MRT. Everyone was just looking out of the window, enjoying the breeze and the view. There are quite a few sitting pose, and over the 3hr odd ride, I pretty much had done all too- stretch out my leg, cross legged and rest my back, cross legged and faced the window or just simply just sitting facing sideway.

#yangon #yangoncircleline #myanmar #burma

Trip on 12 Sept 2014

#throwback

Street peddlers of Yangon

Other than street food… there are quite a few other interesting street peddlers in the heart of Yangon.

 

 

1. Betel nut
It’s basically areca nuts and tobacco, wrapped in a lime-coated betel leaf.

 

2. Phone services
Mobile phones are still not widely used, so… public phones are still commonly found. But, it’s not the typical coin pay phone kind. It’s just like the phone you have at home or work, just that it’s on the street.
I was curious why they were chatting over a table that was so randomly placed along the walkway. The phone on the table caught my attention, but I was still puzzled about it. When I saw more of it, then it hit me that.. ahh, it’s a phone booth.

 

Nope, these phones aren’t for sale.
But, if you want some privacy, head down to any of this booth.

I saw quite a few of such booths and was curious about it. It took me a great deal of courage to peek into one. I timidly stepped into one and craned my next to look around… “Cehhh.. it’s just a phone booth.”.

3. “Hair salon”

To pick out head lice…
4. Fortune telling services
Most of the fortune tellers do it by palm reading based on the posters I saw.
5. Pedicure/ manicure
Even guys need to pamper themselves yeah..
6. Lottery booth