If you’ve read many of the reports on this web site before, you have probably gathered by now that we prefer independent travel to joining big tour groups. Not only do we enjoy the freedom and flexibility of setting our own itinerary, but typically, we also are able to put together a less expensive alternative to big group tours.
Traveling this way usually requires that we work with a local travel agent in the country we will be visiting and also with local guides in the specific cities we tour. For our 2013 visit to Myanmar, we worked with Dr. Myint Schwe Zin, owner of Myanmar Delight Travels and Tours in Yangon. Dr. (Ms.) Zin speaks and writes English fluently and was extremely helpful in her advice and in booking hotels and domestic transportation. We also appreciated that she had no problem with us booking directly with local guides in cities outside of Yangon and in one case; booking directly with a hotel when Myanmar Delights couldn’t offer the room we were looking for there.
We also booked pickup on our arrival into RGN airport from Bangkok with Dr. Zin. It was a little more expensive than a cab would have been but I always find it reassuring when arriving in a country for the first time (with luggage) to find a smiling face holding a card with my name on it and not having to deal with the hassles of arranging transportation as soon as we get off a plane. Plus we were able to hit the ground running and set off on our first day of seeing the city directly from the airport.
At our airport greeting, we met Dr. Zin’s daughter who handed over hotel vouchers plus tickets for domestic flights and a river ferry trip that we had booked through them. They also arranged for a train ticket, which had to be purchased in Mandalay to be delivered to our Mandalay hotel.
Additionally, we booked 2-days of tours and another day of car service with Myanmar Delights. Actually, what we booked was 3-days of a car and driver (2 different drivers for the 3 days) who took us to the highlights of the city. The cars were clean and reliable (late model Toyota “Kluger” aka Highlander in the US), the drivers were always on time, were good drivers and very nice men but who really weren’t guides. We weren’t charged for a guide so I write this more as an observation than as any criticism. In some cases we were taken to places where it would have been helpful to have a guide and at Shwedagon Pagoda we hired an on-site guide but we managed to see the city quite well.
Myanmar Delight Travels and Tours / http://www.myanmartravelagent.net
No. 899, Kyaung Lane, 7 ward, 10 miles,
Sawbwagyigone, Insein Township, Yangon, Myanmar
TEL & FAX: +95-1-651833 / Mobile: +95-9-5012519
E.mail: firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com
You can read more about the guides we used in other cities in Myanmar by clicking on the links below: