Friday, September 18, 2015

Pyin U Lwin train station

Pyin U Lwin... evening reflections

Kandawgyi Tower of Horrors... just kidding

I don't know why this tower was built here, but it is about 6 stories tall, with a wooden ramp going up and around to the top floor. There is an elevator up the inside of the wooden structure, but it was badly broken when I was there. Set off to walk the ramp to the top, but realized at about 3rd floor level that this ramp was actually starting to terrify me! It was a little shaky and seemed like it MIGHT not have been attached to the tower as solidly as I would have liked. I paused as high as I dared to go, took some panorama views and quickly high tailed it down off that ramp. The tower was weird, and didn't really fit in with the theme of the rest of the park at all. It was way off in the back, all by itself,  up a decent sized hill in the forest. It felt like it could have been the set to a horror movie. Totally gave ME the heebee geebees! Death Tower!!

The Kandawgyi aviary... they walk among us!

Kandawgyi sights

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Kandawgyi Botanical Gardens, around the entrance

I escaped Mandalay and it's lethal brown smog as early as possible the next morning. Caught a shared minivan for a two hour trip North East into the mountains, to the town of Pyin U Lwin, famous for its fresh air, cooler temps and this, the Kandawgyi Botanical Gardens.  Truly world class... enjoyable scenery, quite and relaxing vibe and TONS of plants from all different regions all very well labeled and mostly in English! Ahhhhhh! My idea of paradise!

Evening on the Ayeryawaddy River, Mandalay

Amusing myself in Mandalay

Mandalay's famous puppets

Puppet shows are an old tradition in this part of Myanmar.

The Ayeryawaddy River as it flows through Mandalay

These are views from my hotel room. My usual strategy of finding a room on a major river to get some airflow does not prove to be effective against the thick, soupy, brown air of Mandalay. My body felt overwhelmed and assaulted and I was scared to leave my fancy hotel. I made my plan to get out of town as quickly as possible the next morning. Hack, hack, cough, cough.