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Things to do in Yangon

Things to do in  Yangon

Welcome to Yangon

Part British Colonial throwback, part emerging modern city, Yangon (Rangoon) is welcoming a tourism boom after several decades of isolation. Myanmar's largest city is also its former capital and commercial hub, populated by a diverse blend of cultures. Shiny new skyscrapers have sprung up amid beautifully restored colonial buildings, ancient pagodas, and traditional fisherman's huts, but much of the infrastructure remains behind the times, so it's wise to rely on a guide to show you around. Make the pilgrimage to Shwedagon Paya, a glittering, 114-acre temple compound topped by a 344-foot (104 meter) golden stupa that is studded with diamonds and rubies. The local Buddhist monks are eager to chat about their traditions and will even tell your fortune—for a small donation. Also on the don't-miss list: Sule Paya, a 2,000-year-old gilded temple; colorful Bogyoke Aung San Market; Chaukhtatgyi Paya's 213-foot-long (65 meter) reclining Buddha; the lavish displays of royal wealth at the National Museum; and the floating dining hall at Karaweik Palace. Travelers wishing to explore further can board the Circular Train, a pleasant ride that includes oft-overlooked spots such as Little India and Chinatown. Along with its many important historical sites, modern Yangon offers fine dining, art galleries, and day spas. Wind down your city tour with a drink at the venerable Strand Hotel, an oasis of relaxed elegance since 1901. And while Yangon is a worthy destination on its own, it's also an easy jumping-off point for trips to Pegu (Bago), Inle Lake, Mandalay, and beyond.

Top 15 things to do in Yangon

#1
Shwedagon Pagoda

Shwedagon Pagoda

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Topped by a gilded spire that can be seen from across Yangon, Shwedagon Pagoda is considered Myanmar’s most significant Buddhist landmark. Visitors mingle with locals visiting shrines, lighting candles, and praying in meditation halls around the central stupa. There’s a lot to see here, from religious traditions to gorgeous artwork.More
#2
Chaukhtatgyi Paya (Chaukhtatgyi Buddha Temple)

Chaukhtatgyi Paya (Chaukhtatgyi Buddha Temple)

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Encrusted with diamonds and other precious stones, Chaukhtatgyi Paya’s (Chauk Htat Gyi Buddha massive reclining Buddha is an awe-inspiring sight. A viewing platform gives visitors a good look at elegant detailing on the Buddha statue’s feet, which contain 108 segments—a sacred number that’s deeply significant for Myanmar’s Buddhists.More
#3
Sule Pagoda (Sule Paya)

Sule Pagoda (Sule Paya)

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Traffic whips past the gleaming spires at Sule Pagoda, a Yangon temple set in the center of a busy roundabout. Believed to be even older than the landmark Shwedagon Pagoda, Sule Pagoda is far less crowded and well worth the stop. Come to visit shrines, send a prayer card into the towering stupa, and see brightly painted Buddha statues.More
#4
Bogyoke Aung San Market

Bogyoke Aung San Market

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Stalls burst with colorful cloth, souvenirs, gems, wooden carvings, and other wares at Bogyoke Aung San Market. Built in the waning years of British rule, the market’s cobblestone alleys and historic façade draw a lively mix of visitors and locals. A food court offers a colorful feast, from spicy noodles to ultra-fresh salads.More
#5
Kandawgyi Nature Park

Kandawgyi Nature Park

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An oasis of green in central Yangon, Kandawgyi Nature Park offers a peaceful escape from the hustle and bustle of the city. Spanning 260 acres (105 hectares, including Kandawgyi Lake, the park is a popular recreation and relaxation spot and a great place to enjoy the scenery, people watch, and experience local culture.More
#6
Yangon City Hall

Yangon City Hall

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Located in the heart of downtown Yangon, Yangon City Hall is the official seat of the city’s administrative body, the Yangon City Development Committee. A historic and architectural landmark, the building is widely considered one of the most beautiful examples of mixed British colonial and traditional Burmese architecture.More
#7
Yangon Central Railway Station

Yangon Central Railway Station

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The Burmese-style roofs atop Yangon Central Railway Station are a landmark in downtown Yangon. For most travelers, though, they’re just a starting point in an onward journey on Myanmar’s rail network. From here, catch the Yangon Circular Train that loops around the city, or hop a ride towards the country’s most remote regions.More
#8
Taukkyan War Cemetery

Taukkyan War Cemetery

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Thousands of Allied troops died in Myanmar—then called Burma—during two world wars, and Taukkyan War Cemetery is their serene memorial. With beautifully tended grounds and an imposing monument at the center, the Taukkyan War Cemetery is the largest of Myanmar’s Allied cemeteries and is easy to reach from Yangon.More
#9
Yangon Chinatown

Yangon Chinatown

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Come to the bustling Yangon Chinatown to see vendors hawking fresh treats and to visit import shops and lively sidewalk cafes. Early evenings draw a festive crowd to 19th street, which runs through the heart of this colorful neighborhood. This is where to find some of the city’s finest street food, from barbecued kebabs to steaming bowls of soup.More
#10
Karaweik Palace

Karaweik Palace

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Immerse yourself in the food and culture of Myanmar with a dinner and traditional dance performance at Karaweik Palace. Located on the eastern shore of Kandawgyi Lake facing Shwedagon Pagoda, this glittering restaurant was designed in the shape of a royal barge, and is a landmark in Yangon and popular tourist attraction.More
#11
Musmeah Yeshua Synagogue

Musmeah Yeshua Synagogue

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Step into Yangon’s last synagogue to see beautifully restored 19th-century architecture. Subtle detailing highlights the white interior, and the synagogue has a noteworthy collection of Torah scrolls on display. With a convenient location near Sule Pagoda, it’s a fascinating glimpse into the heritage of Yangon’s tiny Jewish community.More
#12
Little India

Little India

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With a history that stretches back to the colonial era, Little India is a buzzing neighborhood in Yangon that’s known for great street food, open-air fruit sellers, and the magnificent Sri Kaali Amman Hindu Temple. Set out on foot to find Indian-style teahouses, restaurants, and shops—they’re a glimpse of Yangon’s impressive cultural diversity.More
#13
Yangon Circular Train (Circle Line)

Yangon Circular Train (Circle Line)

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Looping through residential areas, vivid markets, and dozens of stations, the Yangon Circular Train is daily transit for many locals, but it’s also a fascinating way to see the city. With plenty of chances to stop and explore, you can step off the train to shop for souvenirs, taste Yangon cuisine, or photograph bustling neighborhoods.More
#14
Bogyoke Aung San Museum

Bogyoke Aung San Museum

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The Bogyoke Aung San Museum is dedicated to General Aung San, the founder of modern Myanmar and is located in the very building where he and his family lived for only two years before he was assassinated in 1947. Regarded as Myanmar’s greatest hero, in what was then Burma’s struggle for independence from Britain, General Aung San is also the father of Suu Kyi, one of today’s most recognizable figures and leader of an anti-government faction that fights against the government her father helped put in place.The museum was established some 15 years after his death, but everything is still displayed as if the general, his wife Daw Khin Kyi and the three kids were living there. Everyday memorabilia such as books, handwritten correspondences, furniture and family photos decorate the home, Daw Khin Kyi’s dresses can be admired and one of Aung San’s cars still stands in the garage. While the personal effects are interesting to see, the most impressive part of this home turned museum is actually the house it is located in. Apparently, Aung San was a frugal man and the museums interior reflects this by being very sparse, but he did live in a beautiful two-story colonial villa. This museum offers a glimpse into the life of Myanmar’s national hero, who, despite his power was apparently a very honest and selfless man who preferred a simple lifestyle.More
#15
The Strand Yangon

The Strand Yangon

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A landmark since 1901, the Strand Yangon has been called one of the finest hotels East of the Suez. Housed in a restored historic Victorian mansion, the elegant hotel has been updated for modern times but has kept its authentic period furnishings.More

Trip ideas

Top Yangon City Heritage List Landmarks

Top Yangon City Heritage List Landmarks

How to Spend 2 Days in Yangon

How to Spend 2 Days in Yangon

Operators have paid Viator more to have their experiences featured here

Recent reviews from experiences in Yangon

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Great Cultural Experience
John_R, Mar 2020
Yangon by night
What a wonderful way to see Yangon by night.
star-4
Such a different experience from all the other things you can see in Yangon
Cecile_L, Jan 2020
Yangon Dala Discovery Tour on Bamboo Bicycles
it is a a different approach to visiting Yangon as the places you visit are completely different from the busy city.
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Cheap and easy
Kalevi_S, Dec 2019
Yangon Budget Tour
Can recommend if you want to see the main sights of Yangon without wasting too much time or money.
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An amazing experiemces private full day to bago
lethi_d, Oct 2018
Bago Private Full Day Including Lunch With English Local Guide From Yangon
this private full day trip from yangon city offers tons of heritage to see and religion to experiences in bago.
star-5
Excellent way to visit Yangon.I...
Paulo L, Nov 2017
Private Yangon City Tour Including Lunch With English Local Tour Guide
Excellent way to visit Yangon.
star-5
Shwedagon pagoda is amazing
emchavez678, Aug 2019
Private Yangon City Tour Including Lunch With English Local Tour Guide
He speaks English perfectly and is very fun and knowledgable.
star-5
An excellent tour in Myanmar
Qing_L, Jan 2019
8-Night Myanmar Private Tour with Flights from Yangon
The trip covers 4 main tourist attractions including Yangon, Bagan, Mandalay, and Inle Lake.
star-4
This 9 day tour covered a lot of...
Kenten_W, Mar 2017
8-Night Myanmar Private Tour with Flights from Yangon
Then, it is off on another early morning flight to Mandalay with another 2 full days of touring with another tour guide Mandalay tour is really 4 separate towns Sagaing, Mingun, Mandalay, and Amarpura a lot to see in short amount of time very enjoyable.
star-4
According to the local agency, they...
RicardpGabriel_P, Oct 2016
Private Yangon Day Tour with Circular Train
As one of the attractions is close on Monday, we have been offered to pick another place a la carte so we have changed the schedule and we have visited a couple of other places with the nice guide.
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All about Yangon

Currency
Myanmar Kyat (MMK)
Time Zone
MMT (UTC +6)
Country Code
+95
Language(s)
mm

People Also Ask

What is Yangon known for?

Yangon (or Rangoon) is Myanmar’s largest city and former capital. It’s best known for Shwedagon Pagoda, a sacred Buddhist pagoda with shimmering gold-leaf stupas encrusted with precious jewels. It also boasts several lakes, Kandawgyi Nature Park, and Sule Pagoda. It's also renowned for Shan noodles and lahpet (fermented tea leaf salad).

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How many days do you need in Yangon?

With two days in Yangon, experience the former Burmese capital’s temples and cuisine. See sacred Buddhist sites such as Shwedagon Pagoda, Sule Pagoda, and Chaukhtatgyi Buddha Temple—home to one of Myanmar’s largest reclining Buddhas. Sample the national dish of mohinga (rice noodle fish soup) and browse Bogyoke Aung San Market.

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What is the most visited place in Myanmar?

The most-visited place in Myanmar is Kyaiktiyo Pagoda, a pagoda atop a golden rock perched precariously on the edge of a cliff—it’s also said to feature a strand of the Buddha’s hair. Other popular attractions include Yangon's Shwedagon Pagoda, Inle Lake, and the ancient temples of Bagan.

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What is there to do in Yangon at night?

Watching the sun set over Shwedagon Pagoda is a magical experience, and it tops the list of things to do in Yangon at night. Other top picks include exploring the bustling Chinatown; partying with backpackers on 19th Street; and rubbing shoulders with the Burmese elite on Myanmar Plaza.

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Is Yangon safe for tourists?

Yes. Yangon is considered one of Asia’s safest metropolises; incidents of crime against travelers are very low, and you can expect to feel safe and secure when exploring Myanmar’s former capital, along with other popular tourist spots such as Bagan, Inle Lake, and Mandalay.

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Is Yangon the former Rangoon?

Yes. Rangoon, formerly the capital city, was renamed Yangon—which translates to "end of strife" in Burmese—in 1989. That's also when the country changed its name from the Union of Burma to the Union of Myanmar.

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