Elisa, our Small Group Tours manager has just returned from her very first trip to Burma (Myanmar) where an app helped her navigate, contribute to the local community and find the best food in Yangon.
Whilst preparing for my Burma trip I was looking at apps to use on my travels. It was important to me to find something that would help me to make a positive contribution to local communities while I was there, even if only in a small way.
Luckily there’s a handy little app that takes care of this!
The iDiscover Yangon City Walks app, free on iOS and Android, allows you to make a positive social impact as you eat, shop and play in Yangon. It showcases community-curated neighbourhood walks that guide you through some of Yangon’s most interesting areas. The walks can all be used offline, and the excellent design makes them pleasant and easy to use.
Downtown Yangon itinerary
The Strand Hotel
The Downtown Yangon itinerary takes you along the riverside towards the historical and beautiful Strand hotel. The bar here is a great place to grab a refreshing drink, and the lobby showcases a lovely collection of black and white photos of old Yangon, giving an interesting glimpse into the life of its past residents.
There are several other historical buildings in this area too and while their facades are weathered, they are still incredibly grand and beautiful.
Make your way north via Pansodan Street and as you walk towards Sule Pagoda you will see the Hla Day social enterprise. This shop works with Myanmar artisans, disadvantaged groups and small local businesses to design, develop and sell quality handmade products with a contemporary twist. There’s anything from trendy wallets made of recycled bicycle inner tubes, to colourful cushion covers made of handwoven fabric.
You will have worked up an appetite with all of this walking and discovering. Do as I did and enjoy a great meal at Sharky’s Restaurant (next door to Hla Day). It’s a casual outfit that serves European dishes; while Burmese food is lovely, you might fancy familiar food now and again.
I’m Italian, and can honestly tell you that The Italian Food Police would happily recommend Sharky’s home made cheese, pasta and pizza! I particularly like the fact that the restaurant grows all of its produce in Burma. The owner works with local farmers to ensure consistently high standards, and he trains staff to produce tasty cured meats, ice cream, bread, and much more; all perfectly prepared in-house.
This is just a little snippet of Yangon. I hope you’ll enjoy discovering it as much as I did!
Download the app, and get in touch with one of our travel consultants to start planning your Burma adventure!