Yangon is the largest city and main gateway to the foreign country of Myanmar. The ancient city of Bagan, the home to more than 2,200 Buddhist sites, is the most important tourist destination of the Golden Temple Country. A journey between Yangon and Bagan is commonly included in the itinerary of almost all Myanmar tours. As a result, a popular question raised by the visitor is that, “How to travel from Yangon to Bagan?” The following are some options we recommend.
Travel from Yangon to Bagan by air
It can be said that airline service in Myanmar is quite expensive. You will have to pay $95-155 for a Yangon Bagan flight (from Yangon International Airport to Nyuang U Airport). However, this is the easiest and quickest way to travel from travel from Yangon to Bagan. In need, a direct flight takes only 1h20 and a non-direct one (via Heho Airport or Mandalay airport) takes about 1h50. There a lot of daily flights offered by 7-8 domestic airlines; the flights sometimes are canceled due to bad weather condition, especially in the rainy season (May to October).
The Air Bagan is probably the best airline flying the route from Yangon to Bagan, but you can also choose from Air Mandalay and Myanmar Airways. Note that Nyuang U Airport is 7 km far from Bagan, so check to see if your hostel or hotel will pick you up.
Travel from Yangon to Bagan by bus
Both day buses and night buses are available for the 611-kilometer journey between Yangon and Bagan. In general, travelers are apt to choose night buses for Myanmar travel to feel less tired and save a hotel night. A bus ticket is quite cheap, only US $11-15.5 for normal class and US 18.5-0 for VIP class. Travel from Yangon to Bagan by bus will take about 9-10 hours. The bus journey is relatively pleasant thanks to a road condition and quality of the bus itself (all buses are air-conditioned). However, it will be better for you to prepare medicines if you have to suffer from motion sickness, and you should be aware of the fact that the bus may be noisy until midnight as the driver turns on movies or Burmese traditional music very loud.
The bus normally leaves the downtown Yangon at 7.00pm and arrives in Bagan around 5.00am (the next day). So make sure to book your hotels in Bagan in advance and prepare for the transfer from bus station to your hotel.
Travel from Yangon to Bagan by train
During your Burma tours, you should understand comprehensively that a journey by train from Yangon to Bagan will be very long (15-17 hours) and mostly unpleasant. The train is hot and noisy and its speed is incredible slow.
However, the traveling train is very cheap that it costs 16,500 (17 USD) kyat for an upper-class sleeper ticket and even only 4,500 kyats (4 USD) for an ordinary class seat one. Food and drink are not included in the ticket price. In addition, note that you cannot buy the tickets at the train station. Instead, you have to buy them from some travel agents in Yangon center. You should also prepare warm clothes as the temperature may be much reduced at night. Trains normally leave Yangon station at 4.00pm, and arrive in Bagan around 10.00am (the next day).
Choosing the way to travel from Yangon to Bagan totally depends on you. Consider thoroughly your budget, timing and also your adventure mind to make the best decision.