Yangon, also know as Rangoon, was the former capital of Myanmar. It is filled with colonial buildings left behind from the British times. We spent most of our time relaxing at the Governor’s Residence Hotel. We did venture out to visit the Bogyoke Market (Scott’s Market) but the highlight was definitely the Schwedagon Pagoda, the most revered Buddhist temple in Myanmar.
Schwedagon is quite a large complex with a 8-sided stupa all gilded with gold leaf in the center. Unlike other religious sites, it has an informal feel to it. To me, it seemed to also serve as a kind of town square where people meet and chat, where children play, while at the same time, monks come to chant and worshippers come to pray. Around the large stupa, there are 8 shrines for each day of the week with Wednesdays divided into two parts. The Burmese like to pray at their day shrine by offering flowers or pouring water over the shrine. Do visit Schwedagon Pagoda in the afternoon around 4pm like we did and wait there for the sunset. The color on the dome of the pagoda is beautiful during sunset. And after sunset, the pagoda lights up.
Praying at the day shrine that matches the day of your birth.
It is always very busy at the Schwedagon Pagoda complex.
Schwedagon Pagoda all lit up after dark.
Bogyoke Market or Scotts Market where you can buy local crafts, textiles, gold jewelry, and food.