We arrived in Mandalay after a third turbulent plane ride. The air was thick with smog. Motorcycles were everywhere and the city was alive with energy. Ancient Mandalay, the formal capital and home to the royal palace was stunning. More pagodas and ancient temples wooed me. I was only there two nights, but it was lovely. How did my taxi tour turn into a donkey tour? I will never understand. Regardless, imagining what is left of the kingdom of the Burmese kings, meditation chants, and looking out on golden tipped pagodas was romantic.
Five things you need to know about Mandalay:
- Take a taxi tour, the taxi drivers are know everywhere and even some secret places. Just arrange for a driver and tell him to take you to Innwa, Amarapura, and Sagain.
- Don’t miss the U-Bien Bridge.
- Women aren’t aloud to visit the Buddha’s, so be warned if you want to affix gold to the Buddha’s in the pagodas.
- It’s really hot- bring a hat.
- No shoes are aloud in the pagodas, so slip-ons are a must. Tying your shoes every temple and pagoda gets old fast. Trust me- I did it!