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  • Day162

    Day 161: North to Mandalay

    November 24, 2016 in Myanmar ⋅ ☀️ 26 °C

    Not a whole lot to report today, other than a day of travelling. We'd opted to do a bus ride for the 5 hours or so north to Mandalay, Myanmar's second-largest and second-most important city. So we had our breakfast and headed downstairs, getting picked up by a ute at 8:30am bound for the bus station.

    The coach was actually a minibus, one of the 28-seater ones and reasonably modern, though Chinese-built and clearly done with a Chinese-sized person in mind. The bus set off on time at 9am, and was about half full so I moved seats for a bit more room.

    Since it was more of a bus than a coach, it was stopping to pick up and drop off locals fairly consistently (not continually, but often enough to be a bit annoying). It also got fairly crowded at one point so I switched seats back to be with Shandos - definitely didn't want a repeat of our nightmare Indonesia bus ride!

    Spent the time listening to podcasts and doing a bit of reading as well. Lunch stop was a typical highway side-shack, though most of the food didn't look that great. Bought a couple of pastry/biscuit-looking things that actually turned out to be made of goat's cheese! Interesting discovery.

    Rest of the drive passed without incident, and we arrived in Mandalay in the late afternoon. It's a very spread out city, and took quite a while to drive through. Got another ute directly to our hotel (an unexpected bonus, we were expecting to be dumped at the bus station) and checked in. Decent hotel, though way too much lime green paint for my liking!

    Headed out early for dinner at a fairly fancy place run by a couple of Swiss expats. I had a big pork schnitzel while Shandos had a grilled fish. Very tasty food, though very expensive by Myanmar standards (two meals plus a wine and a beer was about $30!). Considered having dessert but decided against it. Off to bed after a long day.
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