1. The Strand Hotel – this old colonial style hotel is a welcome retreat from the heat of walking around the streets of Central Yangon. It was built in 1901 and as soon as you walk through the doors, it’s like going back in time, from the large fans and chandeliers hanging from the ceiling to the incredibly attentive staff. You can opt for a traditional Afternoon Tea in the Strand Cafe or a cocktail in Sarkies Bar. We opted for the latter as we’d just eaten noodles (see below) and there was a Happy Hour deal offering 2 for 1 cocktails, which definitely made us “happy”. Go for “the Hugo” – a combination of white wine, elderflower, lime, mint and soda which was perfectly refreshing from the heat outside! 92 Strand Road, Yangon
2. 999 Shan Noodle Shop – you could walk past this restaurant a hundred times and still miss it. In fact, even once we found it, we still walked past a few times debating whether to go in or not. We had read some great reviews online but its appearance didn’t exactly fit with one of the top restaurants in Yangon. There is about 10 – 15 wooden tables surrounded by small plastic stools. But don’t be fooled. There is a reason why this is in the guide books – we went with the house specialities – chicken noodles in a slightly spicy broth and a chicken noodle salad with a peanut dressing – we could probably both have ordered a second helping. 130b, 34th Street, Yangon
3. Cask 81 whisky bar – OK, so this is probably not going to be to everyone’s tastes but as a true Scotsman, I couldn’t resist a trip to see Yangon’s first dedicated whisky bar, which stocks an impressive range of Scottish single malts. What was even more impressive was the Bartenders’ knowledge of both the whiskies and the different distilleries they came from. It’s a little bit difficult to find but definitely worth it if you fancy a nightcap before bedtime. Kabar Aye Pagoda Road (Opposite Pearl Condo and behind Haru Restaurant)
*We only had one night in Yangon so opted to take in the sunset at the Shwedagon Pagoda. If staying for two nights, you can also enjoy the sunset at some of Yangon’s rooftop bars such as Atlas or Vista.