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Jan 25, 2013 03:26 PM

myanmar recs for upcoming first time trip

my friends and i are headed to yangon, bagan and inle lake for the first time next month and have perused the very helpful posts by PhilD and annebkk, among others. below is a summary of places that are on my potential to-try list. any comments on these places or any recs for new restaurants would be greatly appreciated! we're trying to focus on authentic cuisine and avoid any spots that are too westernized or hotel affiliated.TIA!

YANGON - we will be staying at Chatrium and Traders
Feel Myanmar - lunch only; easy point and order and good authentic flavors
Taing Yain Thar (national restaurant) - newer, clean, good burmese flavors
Nan Htike - steamed fish, shan noodles, salads
Happy Cafe & Noodles - catfish noodle soup
any good tea shop recommendations for lunch (meeshay or shan khao sway?)

BAGAN - staying in Old Bagan
Green Elephant / Beach Bagan / Sunset Garden - good views, decent food
Queen Restaurant - good local food, avoid international items

INLE LAKE - staying in Villa Inle Resort
any specific recommendations here?
shan noodle spots?

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  1. Huckleberry, we are off in 10 days (!) Did you try the places in Yangon and Bagan?

    2 Replies
    1. re: dai11

      hi there, we didn't venture too far off the beaten path in yangon but did manage to hit feel twice. the winners there were the mohingar, tea leaf salad and their seafood dishes (from the back of the restaurant where you pick out the entrees). we particularly enjoyed the large prawns and half roasted fish - both were in a mildly spicy chili based sauce that went great with rice. (first pic below includes mohingar and prawn dish, forgot to take a pic of second meal - sorry)

      in bagan, we went to both green elephant and the moon (vegetarian). green elephant lacked spice - felt it catered to large group tours and had great views of the river and a friendly proprietor. the moon was cozy and rustic and much more flavorful. we ordered the papaya salad (pretty good) and pumpkin and tofu curry with purple sticky rice. chili condiments were also available on the side.

      doesn't sound like you're hitting inle, but my favorite dish of the trip were the shan noodles. different variations in each location but the soup and dry based versions at the Villa Inle Resort were really wonderful! good balanced of spice and a little bit of acid. perfect breakfast food.

      1. re: huckleberry

        Thanks for the update and the pictures! I have made a note. Hopefully will have all good things to report back! :-)

    2. Wow, I wish I could. However, i was there in February 1972 right after they opened the borders to tourists for the first time since 1939. And the place still looked like 1939. The radio only broadcast six hours a day and there was no television. The Inle Lake Hotel ( I recall it being spelled Inya Lake) was the only centrally air-conditioned building in the country. Picture postcards were yet to be introduced. I mostly snacked from street vendors or in the night market but the only upscale meal I had was at the Strand Hotel. I wonder if it is still there.