The capital city bustles with activity, even early on a Saturday morning. It seems every one of Yangon’s six million inhabitants has something to sell. Unfortunately, we saw many more sellers than buyers. Jim was amused by the Burmese version of outdoor cafes with their tiny chairs and tables. No, neither of us had the nerve to try the fried crickets.
After a fabulous lunch with a tea leaf salad and Myanmar beer at the Monsoon Restaurant, we paid our respects to an enormous reclining Buddha.
Later, our guide timed our arrival at Shwedagon to coincide perfectly with the setting sun.
It’s impossible to convey the scale of this magnificent golden pagoda in photographs. I’ve seen many pictures of this site, but until I saw it for myself, I never realized just how massive it is. It’s hard to imagine that the giant monument is made of solid brick covered with gold leaf which gives way to gold plate as you get nearer the bejeweled top. Currently much of the 327 feet of pagoda is covered by scaffolding while they repair damage caused by the devastating Cyclone Nargis. If you look closely at the first shot below, you can see workers descending the bamboo stairs. This will give you some sense of its size.