Yangon Circle Line Rail in Myanmar
This is Myanmar," Rudyard Kipling said, "and it is different from any other country you know. As any clichéd quotation of a journey, the above was often jettisoned by authors and editors, travelers and travelers who find it difficult to find the words to describe this enchantment. But the thing is - as with all good quotations from travels - under all the strain and the cliché - there is actually something true about it.
As we recently traveled around Myanmar, we were impressed by its unique character, the warmness of the natives and the way the land has preserved so much genuine. Metropolitan trips are generally not our thing, and we didn't want to get angry with the experience of contemporary mess and the tourism pitfalls that big towns have.
So, when the chance arose to explore Yangon for a whole days on an urban adventure trip and experience a part of our lives, we leapt for it. He is a bubbling machine building graduate with a penchant for discovering Yangon with visitors and speaks and teaches English.
It' like two old groups of friends meeting in a new town, and it set the pace for the remainder of the days. Stay with him, he says he's done this Yangon deal before. You want to traverse a street in Yangon like a native? It' s calm at the train terminal; surprisingly, between 100-150,000 passengers are now transported around the Rop.
Silence is broken when a screaming procession into the station floor, a flock of humans passes us and gazes curiously at us. A 9-kilometer line connecting 39 city, metropolitan and country railway stops in a large series. Myanmar is still a troubled place for many and poor.
For many local people who bring their goods onto the local markets, the railway is much less expensive than the coach. From time to time, the slowdown is just enough to allow the passenger to get on and off the trains. Wholesalers are crowding the platforms at Da Nyin Gone railway stop, the merchants are crowding the doors of the trains, the salesmen are rushing to the stands with their hands full of products, the kids are coughing between their feet dressed in thinaka, and the mendicants waving metallic mugs and waiting for the crackling of the arriving Kyat.
Everybody is listening to the signals of an approaching platoon, gathering their goods and joins the mass panic when the message comes. Laughing at our messed up faces, he says that it is used in most Myanmar food, so most of us here like it. I' M IN MYANMAR? On our way back to the town ( and our next stations on the tour!) we look out of the windows and see the completely unparalleled cross-section of our lives ahead.
Travelling around the district is like travelling back in time to Myanmar, and yet we have found that while the trains creep around the route every single working hour, the Yangon growth rates are soaring. When the expanding town reappears, we have to ask ourselves whether the pulsating, humble life floating along the rails will remain in its present state - or whether it will be replaced by high-rise buildings, flyovers and high-speed MRIs?
But we are happy that we took the liberty of exploring it while it does, just like a native. Jump on the Yangon Circle Line bandwagon? Enjoy the Yangon Circle Line Rail journey; make your Yangon by Rail trip with Urban Adventures.