I was standing in a park, sipping the redbull which I bought in a small shop, thinking where to go. Then I remember my colleague told me to go to Bogyoke (pronounced as Bo-chok) Market. I tried to talk to the owner of the shop but she only smiled at me. She don’t speak English. The younger lady, who happens to be her sister, smiled at me and told me she can speak English. I did not ask at how to go to Bogyoke Market first. I told her how beautiful and amazing Shwedagon is, which is true. She was all smile, talking about the place. And she was working as a sales lady near Bogyoke. And speaking of Bogyoke, I ask her how to go there. She told me either take a taxi or take a bus. But she recommended to take a taxi because I may lost if I will take a bus and it will take a long turn to go there. She said she will call a taxi for me. One taxi stopped in front of her and they are talking. Then, she told me to just pay 2,500Kyat (USD2.00). Drivers give different rate for foreigners and locals. So if you have local friend, let them call a taxi, if not, befriend one. They are a big help.
Travel time from Shwedagon Pagoda to Bogyoke Market is only around 15 minutes.
It’s like nothing’s here. You must go inside to see everything, and be amazed.
I bought a cloth for my friend’s wedding.
The sidewalk vendors:
Going inside the market:
Beautiful baskets, bags and wooden umbrella. Mind you, their umbrella is waterproof though it looks like it isn’t.
And they have talented painters. The paint ranges from 50,000Kyat (USD39.00) above.
And we talk about a woman’s bestfriend, which is a “diamond” they say. But my bestfriend is travel ticket 😛
Yes, diamond is “elegent”. Myanmar is a place of a vast variety of gems and diamond.
And time to have… fresh fruits!
The lady asked me if I want some juice. I was curious what the juice like. Well, it’s a shake, not a juice. And it’s soooo refreshing! I’ve got a fresh mango and healthy for only 1,000Kyat (USD0.80). I asked her not to put sugar (in case they are going to put).
And noodles! Unfortunately, I’m not hungry.
Going to the other side of the market,
is a black market where people exchange money, buying and selling of gems and stones while others play to kill the time. It’s a buzz of locals making money. You may wonder what they are doing and it’s worth the intrigue. Be ready with the prying eyes looking at you like you are a weird person looking at their business, though. But some people just don’t care and mind their own business.
Handcrafted baskets made of rattan:
Beside the market is the Cathedral of the Holy Trinity, an Anglican Church.
It’s 4PM and the sky was getting dark. I have to go to Aung Mingalar Bus Station going to Pyin Oo Lwin. Taxi fare from Bogyoke to the bus station was 10,000Kyat (USD7.80) as per the drivers. One driver told me to just give him 9,000Kyat (USD7.00). Just in time I was in the taxi, the rain started to pour from light to heavy. It’s monsoon season in Myanmar. The driver was so nice to find my bus. Though he speak a little bit of English, he find a way to communicate with me. I gave him the ticket but I don’t know if he can read English. The ticket was in English but the upper part side is Burmese, which, my friend told me, is a number. I told him the name of the bus and he understood.
I won’t recommend taking a bus going around Yangon because their buses are jam-packed, some even looks like a lorry with installed seat. Unless you know where is the place that you are going to. Taxis in Yangon is quiet cheap, just know how much is the estimated fare and always ask the driver. They don’t use meter fare.
My next destination is Pyin Oo Lwin. I booked a ticket online and you should, too. They have a bit higher price due to web booking fee but it’s not that much and it is more convenient than buying a ticket at the terminal itself especially if the place that you are going to has a festivities or celebration. My friend was surprised when she know that I booked the ticket online. They never know about it and they always call the terminal to book in advance. Sometimes they cannot even get a ticket. I recommend you to book one month advance because the company will be the one to call the terminal and they will only confirm within 7 days. The chance of getting a ticket is still not 100% but at least you have the edge.