Not Exactly Mandalay Bay
Mandalay Travel Blog› entry 4 of 12 › view all entries
The trip to Mandalay was quite the experience. Bus rides are always an adventure in Myanmar. If you make it from your starting location to your destination without breaking down or getting a flat, consider yourself lucky. On this trip, not only did we get 2 flat tires, but around 2am we blew an exhaust or something that cost us about 2 hours. Thank God for Whiskey is all I can say...
Mandalay, the former capital, is considered the 2nd city. Its located in the center of the country on the river banks of the (not so) glorious Ayuwaddy. Its climate is hot and dry and somehow, after a day in the city, you are covered in dust. But the real charm of this city are the back streets where locals act as if you are from another planet (we might as well be). At night we were lucky enough to find a few local Budda festivals, where kids rode the ferris wheel and the merry go-round (both powered by man). We wandered the streets of this carnival-like atmosphere and were treated like celebrities. Now I have a bit more appreciation for them : )
Our favorite spots were the beer drinking stations, where you could get actual draft beer for about $.35 and very tasty. We even were able to find a stout, which is quite unique for this part of the world. All in all, Mandalay. while not being anywhere as exotic as the name sounds, was friendly and interesting.