7 Aug 2010
It was a bright morning and after breakfast we ventured into downtown Yangon. While walking towards the city I noticed that the city is not properly kept. The drainage system was bad and the remaining typical British Colonial buildings which was left were in a state of disrepair. I just could imagine how it was 50 years back, in the early 60s where every major airline made Rangoon its hub in South East Asia when it was properly managed by the British (who else). Walking around downtown Yangon reminded me of Alor Star in the early 70s especially the models of the buses and taxis. Yangon is full of pagodas, churches, mosques and temples representing the multi-racial society of Yangon. Food was not a major problem as there were a lot of briyani restaurants in town .
The Sule Paya (Sule Pagoda) is in the centre of town and also acts as a roundabout. It is octagonal and according to the local tales, about two thousand years old and just a few meters away is the Bengali Mosque.
We visited the Bogyoke Aung San Market (Scott Market) similar to our Central Market in Kuala Lumpur which is an excellent source to buy Burmese handicrafts, such as wood carvings or lacquer ware. The market is also known for its clothing and fabrics. It is also full of gem stones shops. One should bargain to get the best prices. Lesson learned very well. The rest of the day was just walking around downtown Yangon which is free of motorcycles. Kuala Lumpur City Hall should learn from the Yangon City Council how it is enforced.