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Discovering Yangon, Myanmar

Travel to Myanmar has been booming ever since the military junta—which had been in place since 1962—gave up its rule and the Southeast Asian country began transitioning to a civilian democracy in 2011. A great place to begin any visit is the bustling metropolis of Yangon (formerly Rangoon). Despite its fun and frenetic energy, you’ll find plenty of places of respite, from Buddhist temples to a large lake and park. Read on for the five must-visit spots that will immerse you in local culture.
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Yangon, Myanmar (Burma)
The scent of fresh flowers and burning incense heralds your arrival at this larger-than-life Buddha statue, measuring 213 feet long. The eyes alone reach almost six feet in length! You’ll feel like an ant standing in front of its draped gold robes...
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Shwedagon Pagoda Rd, Yangon, Myanmar (Burma)
To get an authentic look at everyday life in Yangon, set aside time to wander the city’s largest and ever-busy market. Locals browse its five floors for housewares and clothing, as well as traditional herbs and cosmetics. Envious of the shiny hair...
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Inya Lake, Yangon, Myanmar (Burma)
Built by the British as a reservoir in 1883, this artificial lake and its adjacent park just north of downtown Yangon is a go-to locale for outdoor recreation, complete with a playground and driving range. It teems with colorful birdlife—and young...
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Strand Rd, Yangon, Myanmar (Burma)
Like the Shwedagon Pagoda, this revered Buddhist temple was built around 2,500 years ago and houses a strand of Buddha’s hair. Its name translates to “pagoda of the thousand military leaders,” and—as the story goes—it comes from the 1,000 officers...
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ဗဟန်းလမ်း, Yangon, Myanmar (Burma)
Set on a hill overlooking Yangon, Shwedagon Pagoda is the country’s most sacred Buddhist site, said to enshrine eight strands of Buddha’s hair. It’s also the most impressive, with hundreds of vibrantly colored and intricately decorated temples and...