Yangon is a vibrant city, but if you need a break from the busy metropolis then the good news is there’s plenty of half-day, overnight and day trips from Yangon to discover. From leisurely beaches to historical pagodas, you can easily venture somewhere new when using the city as a base.
Here’s our picks of the top spots to travel to from Yangon.
Best Trips From YangonHow do these rankings work?
1. Ngwe Saung (Silver Beach)
This beautiful spot is just as pretty as Ngapali, but is much closer to Yangon, so it’s easier to get to. You’ll find it on the Myanmar shore of the Bay of Bengal. With white sand and luxury hotels it’s a popular spot for honeymooners. You can snorkel and scuba dive, and the seafood is fantastic.
Just a two-hour drive from Yangon, this scenic wetlands reservoir is a wildlife shelter for both resident and migratory waterbirds. It’s ideal for those looking for some peace and tranquility from the city – pack a picnic and relax in nature. There’s also cute eco-lodges near the sanctuary if you want to stay overnight.
3. Kyaiktiyo Pagoda
Kyaiktiyo Pagoda is a well-known Buddhist pilgrimage, a temple sitting on a hill, with a precariously perched ‘golden’ rock which legend says is balancing on a strand of Buddha’s hair. Pilgrims come here from all over Myanmar to worship and add gold leaf to the rock as tribute.
4. Phu Gyi Reservoir
If you’re up for a day’s bicycle ride and want some fresh air, this lake is a great route that will take you past monasteries, pagodas and villages. From the town of Hmawbi, make your way to Pan Ta Pwint Taung Pagoda and you’ll then be on the lake trail. It’s not exactly a top tourist destination, so expect to see some surprised locals!
5. Kyauktan Yele Pagoda
This pretty temple is only an hour south of Yangon in Kyauktan Township, so it’s well worth the half-day trip. Kyauktan Yele Pagoda is on a small island in Hmaw Wun Creek;l you take a boat to reach the magnificent golden temple.
6. The Circle Train
About 100,000 daily commuters travel around 38 stops on Yangon’s famous circular train. It takes three hours to do the full loop, and while it’s hot, stuffy and overcrowded, you’ll see parts of the city you never would otherwise.
Share snacks with strangers on the route and get more of an insight into the day-to-day life here. It’s technically in the city, but it feels far away.
You can easily explore the ancient city of Bago on a day trip from Yangon. There’s several tour companies that do the trip, or you can rent a bike outside the city and do it yourself. You’ll see Kyakhatwine Monastery, Shwemawdaw Pagoda, and the Allied War Cemetery.