Yangon Information

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Formation of Yangon
Yangon, formerly spelled as Rangoon, is the largest city of Myanmar. There are 34 townships forming the city of Yangon. These townships in alphabetical orders are : Ahlone, Bahan, Botahtaung, Dala, Dagon, Dagon (Seikkan), Dawbon, East Dagon, Hlaing, Hlaing Tharyar, Insein, Kyeemyindaing, Kamaryut, Latha, Lanmadaw, Mingalardon, Mingalar Taung Nyunt, Mayangone, North Dagon, North Okkalapa, Pabedan, Pazundaung, Sanchaung, South Dagon, Seik Gyi Khanaung To, Seikkan, South Okkalapa, Shwe Pyi Thar, Thingangyun, Thaketa, Thanlyin, Tarmwe, Yankin.

Shwedagon

History

The history of Yangon is intertwined with the history of the Shwedagon Pagoda. Wherever one may be in Yangon, in the busy town center, in the new towns of the east, in the industrial zone of the west, in the paddy fields of the north, the golden form of the Shwedagon will be seen on the skyline rising above the foliage of the tropical trees, and the founding story of Shwedagon reaches back to the days of the Enlightenment of Gaudama Buddha when He discovered the cause of universal suffering and the way to its elimination. It was on the 49th day after the Enlightenment when two brothers, Taphussa and Bhallika, merchants from Ukkalapa in the land of Mon people in Lower Myanmar, came before Buddha. A nat (spirit) who had been the mother of the two brothers in a previous existence had guided them to the Buddha. The brothers offered honey cakes. After Buddha had eaten the cakes, the brothers asked for gift. Buddha passed His hand over His head and, obtaining eight Hairs, gave them to the brothers. Buddha, perceiving that the three previous Buddhas had caused their possessions to be enshrined in a pagoda on Singuttara hill in the country of the two brothers, bade them to do likewise with the brothers returned home and made landfall at Pagoda Point in the south-west coast of Myanmar. They sent word to king Ukkalapa of their arrival with the sacred Hairs. The King welcomed the Hairs with great ceremony at Asitanzana, north-west of present.

The king and the brothers next sought for a man who could tell them the location of Singuttara Hill. No human knew the location but Sakka, King of the nats did, and guided them to the Hill. Singuttara Hill is known by seven names of which one is Trikhumba, meaning 'three pots' and signifying three pot-shaped hills. Tikhumba became Tikun and when the brothers asked Sakka where the Hairs should be shrined, Sakka could not tell them where the earlier relics were enshrined because they were of such antiquity and he was not that old. However, Sule Nat knew where Kakusandha Buddha's staff was enshrined, Yawhani Nat knew where Konagamana Buddha's water-dipper was enshrined. Hmawbi Nat revealed that he had been assigned to guard the sacred objects. Finally, Gautama Buddha's Hairs were enshrined and stupa consecrated on the full moon day of along time after that, there that, there being no one to worship at the Lagun shrine, it fell into ruin and was covered with jungle.Tradition states that 200 years after Buddha's Parinirvana in 543 BC. Sona and Uttara, two monks from Sri Lanka brought King Asoka to the Pagoda. The King had the jungle cleared and the Pagoda repaired. In the fifth century A.D. King Duttabaung paid homage at the Pagoda. In the 11th century, King Anawratha of Bagan offered gold and silver umbrellas and built a pagoda near the town of Twante across the Yangon River. Dalla, which is now a town on the bank opposite Yangon, was then located on the Twante Ridge and was more important than Dagon. Dagon at that time lay in low lying often water-logged land. Sule Pagoda, now in downtown Yangon, stood on a small island in the swamp, to the west down to he Hlaing River and Yangon /River to the south .The Shwedagon (then called Kyak Lagun in Mon). 

The discovery of a votive of the Bagan period at Tadagale to the north of Yangon shows that the laterite ridge at the end of which Shwedagon lay was a scene of activity in the Bagan period and the ridge may have provided a road southwards to the Shwedagon Pagoda and Dagon Village beyond. 

After the founding of the Shwedagon Pagoda. Alaungpaya's conquest of lower Myanmar is the second most important event in the history of Dagon. May 1775 marks the beginning of the modern town when Alaungpaya, to commemorate his victory, changed Alaungpaya's Yangon was basically a log fortress, with the river frontage in the south, the site of the present 30th street in the west, a line of about 3300' cutting across the modern Maha Bandola Garden, Pansodan and Bo Aung Gyaw street in the north, and Theinbyu Street in the east. The town lay well to the east of the Sule Pagoda.

 

 

Getting Around

 

Public Transport in Yangon

Bus
There are over 250 bus lines running around Yangon. There are over 2.5 million commuters a day. Recently, CNG (Compressed Natural Gas) was introduced as new fuel for buses operating in Yangon. The bus fares starts from Ks 40 to Ks 120, depending on the distance the traveller takes. 

Train
Circular Train service is available. There are 11 local trains for ciruclar services through 37 railway stations. The train fares are cheaper than the bus fares. Yangon Central Railways Station near Aung San Stadium is the main station in Yangon. 

City Taxi
Taxis are plenty in Yangon. You can get any taxi easily anywhere in Yangon. The minimum cost is about Ks 1000 for a 10 minutes ride. The taxis do not have meters, so bargaining before taking the ride is the most suitable option. 

Ferry Boat
For the commuters from Dala, to cross the Yangon River, takes about 10 minutes. They steam between Pansodan Warf and Dala Warf. 

 

 


Domestic Transport from Yangon


Bus
There are two highway bus terminals, one known as Dagon Ayeyar Highway Bus Terminalm in Hlaing Tharyar Township, which is mainly for the buses going to the Ayeyarwaddy Division. The other terminal is Aung Mingalar Highway Bus Terminal, which is for the buses tot the cities and towns of the whole country, except the Ayeyarwaddy Division. 

Boat
Boat services are available for Ayeyarwaddy Delta region. Tickets are available at Lan Thit Jetty in Seikkan Township. 

Train
Myanma Railways operate 40 train-routes throughout the country. Tickets are available at Yangon Central Railway Station. 

Plane
Yangon International Airport is available for both International and Domestic Flights. Domestic flight carriers are (1) Myanma Airways (2) Air Bagan (3) Air Mandalay and (4) Yangon Airways. 

Food in Yangon 

There are a variety of food availabel in Yangon, since Yangon is populated with many different races of people such as Myanmars, Chinese, Indians and other ethnic groups. Restaurants are available everywhere. Chinese Food is available in China Town in Latha and Lanmadaw Township. Indian food is available in Kyauktada Township. There are some European restaurants in Yangon.

Shopping in Yangon

The main tourist destination in Yangon is the Bogyoke Market, where most of the Myanmmar made souvenirs are available. Traditional art & crafts such as Lacquerware, Paintings, Antiques, Tapestries, Textile, Souvenirs, Gems & Jewelries are available in this market and in downtown Yangon.

Entertainment in Yangon

Television Stations


The main TV Stations are located in Yangon. There are two local TV channels: TV Myanmar and Myawaddy with programs running from 7 am to 4 am; and from 4 pm to 11 pm. Most hotels also have satellite TV. Myawaddy was started on the 27th March, 1995. The average broadcasting hours is about 8 hours per day when it started. But now there's more, MRTV3, MRTV4 and Channel 5.

MRTV 3 - English programs are telecast for viewers in Myanmar from 9:00 A.M. to 10:00 A.M. The transmission hours for viewers from abroad are from 13:00 A.M. to 14:00 A.M., 18:00 P.M. to 19:00 P.M., and from 02:00 A.M. to 04:00 A.M. It is an English channel for oversea audience. It can be received from 126 countries and is transmitted from Thaicom-3 C Band Global beam. In addition, the Ministry have also broadcast the MRTV3 programs pm the Internet using web based video streaming system via the gateway of Myanma Posts and Telecommunications. It can be accessed on Internet through http://www.mrtv3.net.mm web site.

MRTV 4 - It was launched on (15-5-2004) like a streaming video via satellite. MRTV 4 contains non-formal education programs and other entertainment programs. But for receiving, it can be matched by MMBox (Myanmar Media Box). This transmission contains educational programs from Ministries, Myanmar movies, English movies with Myanmar subtitles, cartoon programs and other entertainment programs. The transmission time is from 7 am to 11pm daily. For more quality and convenience, MRTV 4 will soon be broadcasting with Digital Video Broadcasting Technology (DVBT) terrestrial system.

Channel 5 - Broadcasts movies in different languages such as English, Chinese, Indian etc ... but all the movies are subtitled in Myanmar language. There are great cartoon programs for the children too.

Newspaper

Three morning newspapers Myanmar Ah Lin and Kye mon in Myanmar and The New Light of Myanmar in English are published in Yangon and The Yadanabon News in Myanmar is published in Mandalay. Myanmar Times Journal (English Version) is distributed every Monday, and the Myanmar Version is distributed ever Friday. Both journals are published in Yangon. The locally published magazines in English; Golden Myanmar, Myanmar Chronicle, and Myanmar Perspective, are available in bookshops. Foreign newspapers such International Herald Tribune, as Singapore Straits Times. and some foreign magazines and periodicals are available at In-wa (Ava) Bookshop, No.232, Sule Pagoda Road.

Radio
Radio Myanmar broadcasts English on the following schedule: 8:30 am to 9:00am 1:30 pm to 2:00 pm; and 9:00 pm to 10:30 pm. The new City FM broadcasts from 08:00 A.M. to 10:00 A.M., and from 13:00 P.M. to 17:00 P.M. daily, starting from January 1, 2002. 
City FM broadcasts from 7 am in the morning till 9pm in the evening. Myanmar & English songs, Entertainment programs, Live Interviews with Movie Stars are broadcast from this Channel.

Entertainment centers
There are entertainment centers such as Cinema Halls, Theatres and Karaoke Pubs. The main Music, Video and Film productions are in downtown Yangon.

Traditional Dances
There are also Traditional Dance sections at Karaweik Hall, where locals entertain with different Myanmar dances. Sometimes, entertainment of the Myanmar Orchestra is also programmed.

Beauty Salons and Spas
Yangon is full of Beauty Salons and Spas. Beautifications of hair and body are also popular in Yangon. The Spas are mainly included in the International Hotels in Yangon.

Formation of Yangon
Yangon is the largest city of Myanmar. There are 34 townships forming the city of Yangon. These townships in alphabetical orders are :
Ahlone, Bahan, Botahtaung, Dala, Dagon, Dagon (Seikkan), Dawbon, East Dagon, Hlaing, Hlaing Tharyar, Insein, Kyeemyindaing, Kamaryut, Latha, Lanmadaw, Mingalardon, Mingalar Taung Nyunt, Mayangone, North Dagon, North Okkalapa, Pabedan, Pazundaung, Sanchaung, South Dagon, Seik Gyi Khanaung To, Seikkan, South Okkalapa, Shwe Pyi Thar, Thingangyun, Thaketa, Thanlyin, Tarmwe, Yankin

Communication Services


Internet Services
Myanmar Posts and Telecommunication (MPT) sells email accounts and Internet access.

Cyber Cafe
There are some Internet Cafe in downtown Yangon. The usage charges are about 650 to 1000 Kyats per hour, depending on the Cyber Cafe.

Express Money Order
Money Order service is available in the capitals of each states and divisions in Myanmar. The maximum amount is Ks 100,000 per remittance.

Parcel Services
General Post Office in Yangon downtown is the main Parcel Service center in Yangon.

Fax Services
Yangon Telegraph Office offers fax services to 88 oversea countries. The domestic fax lines are also widely used in Yangon.

Telephone Services
Generally there are three kinds of phone services in Yangon. Conventional Phones (or) Land Phones, Mobile Phones and IP Star Phones area available. The local phone calling costs are 15 Ks per minute for the conventional phones and 25 Ks per minute for Mobile Phones.
Oversea calls are available but quite expensive, depending on the distance of the country.

 

 

 

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