1 Thing to Keep in Mind If You Visit Yangon Myanmar
Kelli and I are not party types.
We are not night owls.
We last sipped liquor during Prohibition.
Kelli and I party with the frequency of when Haley’s Comet blows through.
Knowing this, the thing to keep in mind when visiting Yangon Myanmar did not affect us at all. Water under the bridge. Or water off of a duck’s back. But many party types may have a serious issue with Yangon or hell, even those who enjoy getting soused here and there…or hell, those who enjoy getting blitzed on a nightly basis.
Whether you are a beer-guzzling backpacker or foodie type who enjoys late-night feasts while traipsing around the city ya gotta understand this:
Virtually everything in Myanmar shuts down by 9 PM.
Not a Night Life City
We are reverse vampires. We do stuff during the day. We settle in at night to enjoy Netflix, or perhaps some online work awaits us.
Most travelers chill throughout the day and barring a day trip or activity here and there, become super active at night. Not necessarily running around until 5 AM, but when the sun lowers in hot, tropical, humid areas particularly, folks tend to be out and about, almost like globe trotting Gollums, wandering from their lairs to enjoy spots.
We did our homework beforehand but few travel bloggers stressed the fact that all shuts down at 9 PM. I am not kidding. Virtually every spot, every restaurant, all of it, shuts down completely.
This blanket shut down is to the point where it is not super safe to wander around certain regions of the city past say, 9:30 PM or by 10′ ish because anybody chilling on the streets is likely up to no good. Why would you hang out on the streets if every place of business is closed? Minus escaping the sweltering heat of your home – somewhat valid excuse – the outside crowd in more sketchy neighborhoods likely is not as sweet as snips and snails and puppy dog tails.
Hey; Yangon seemed like a super duper safe city. I never felt unsafe. Even as we wandered around well after 9ish on our first night out and about, coming to the realization that everything shuts down in this most major or Burmese cities after 9 o’clock.
How this Affects You
If you are not a night life type, this will not affect you at all.
Kelli and I had few issues with the early close time.
Let’s be honest though; many travelers are not in this category. The average traveler likes to head out for a leisurely evening of eating and drinking here and there. Or at least craves some nightlife past, say, 9 PM.
I fully understand travelers do not book Yangon expecting Southeast Asia’s version of Las Vegas or New York City. Folks get this city does sleep, but I wanted to share how the city sleep occurs for quite an extended period.
Even though many travelers simply pass through over 1-2 days on their way to Bagan or Inle, or perhaps on the way out to Bangkok, spending at least a week in this charming, fascinating city not jaded by mass tourism is well worth the visit.
I saw what Southeast Asian major cities were like 20 or maybe 50 years ago while making my way through Yangon with Kelli. Friendly people unaffected by tourists, inviting us out to dinner than….gasp….picking up the check! Impressive. Heart-centered too.
We sensed how the people were both incredibly proud of their city and country plus super humbled and grateful at our visit. No not just us; about the waves of tourists in general gradually making their way to Yangon.
Visit the city.
Just understand; this town is not for the night life travel crowd.
Know what to expect and you will enjoy your visit so much more.
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