Around Yangon

Ngwe Saung Beach.

The distance from Yangon is not big, but getting to Ngwe Saung Beach from the capital is not easy. A change of bus in Pathein (and a night in that agreeable town) is what it took us, and when we finally arrived with the slow bus from Pathein, taking almost three hours for the 42km ride, we had the impression to be far away from the hustle of Yangon. It is easy enough to find a reasonable accomodation on this long stretch of sand, and the peacefulness gives a remote feeling. Perfect to wind down. Not many people find their way to this beach, even though it is closest to the capital. And since its size is enormous, the few people coming here disperse on the white sands – or Silver Sands, as the beach is also being called. Most of the visitors are Burmese, and give a local feeling to this beach. It was striking that the beach was clean, I did not see much trash on it. The sea had a nice surf, great for some playing around in, and never becomes dangerous. All in all, the beach is great for some days of relaxation.

Chaung Thar Beach.

Chaungtha is a village and beach resort located in Ayeyarwady Division, Myanmar. Chaungtha Beach, as it is more commonly known, is about 5 hours’ drive away from Yangon, and is a popular resort with Yangonites from October to April. As it is relatively more affordable than the nearby Ngwesaung and Ngapali beaches, Chaungtha is also more crowded and less cleanly than the two more expensive and better maintained beaches. Chaungtha is renowned for its fresh and reasonably priced seafood. A major attraction is a small pagoda built on a limestone boulder at the southern end of the beach. Nearby fishing villages and tidal mangrove forests are also popular amongst the tourists.

Pathein.

Pathein also called Bassein, is a port city with a 2004 population estimated at 215,600, and the capital of the Ayeyarwady Region, Burma. It lies on the Pathein River (Bassein), which is a western branch of the Irrawaddy River. It is located within the Pathein Township of Pathein District and is also the seat of all. Although once part of the Mon kingdom, Pathein has few ethnic Mon residents today. The majority are of Bamar, Burmese Indians, Kayin ethnicity. There are, however, notable minorities of Karen and Rakhine.

Thanlyin & Kyauktan.

Thanlyin is a major port city of Myanmar, located across Bago River from the city of Yangon. Thanlyin Township comprises 17 quarters and 28 village tracts. It is home to the largest port in the country, Thilawa port.

Bago.

Bago Region is an administrative region of Burma, located in the southern central part of the country. It is bordered by Magway Region and Mandalay Region to the north; Kayin State, Mon State and the Gulf of Martaban to the east; Yangon Region to the south and Ayeyarwady Region and Rakhine State to the west. It is located between 46°45’N and 19°20’N and 94°35’E and 97°10’E.

Pyay.

Pyay is a town in the Bago Division in Burma. It has an estimated population of 123,800 (2001). Pyay is positioned on the Ayeyarwady River (Irrawaddy River) and is 260 km (160 mi) northwest of Yangon. The British Irrawaddy Flotilla Company established the current town in the late 1800s on the Ayeyarwady River (Irrawaddy River) as a transshipment point for cargo between Upper and Lower Burma. The district of Pyay encompasses the valley of the Ayeyarwady, located between Thayetmyo, Hinthada and Tharrawaddy districts. Along the western side of Pyay District are the Rakhine (Arakan) Yoma mountain ranges, and along the eastern side are the Bago (Pegu) Yoma mountain ranges. Pyay District’s main towns are Pyay, Shwedaung, and Paungde.