Want to know how to get from Mandalay to Yangon? In this post, we’ll share a summary of the three ways to get there and compare each option on duration, costs and level of comfort. For each option, we go into more detail to help you decide which transport provider to book with and where to buy your tickets.
What to expect when visiting Yangon
Yangon is Myanmar’s largest city, a vibrant mix of the old and the new. This rapidly growing city features a modern design in the north and some of the most well-preserved colonial architecture in the south.
As Burma’s commercial and cultural hub, Yangon bustles with activity day in and day out. Its main attraction is the Shwedagon Pagoda, the country’s most sacred Buddhist structure. Completely covered with gold, the 99-metre pagoda stands atop a hill overlooking Yangon.
3 ways to get from Mandalay to Yangon
There are three ways to travel the distance of 630 km (391 miles) from Mandalay to Yangon: by bus (8-10 hours), train (16hrs 30m) and flight (1hr 25m). The journey takes between 1h 25m - 16h 30m and the quickest way is by flight. The lowest priced tickets start from $9 for the bus.
We suggest booking with a well-known bus company such as; Boss Express, Man Shwe Pyi, Gi Group Express, or JJ Express. These companies have all received fairly good reviews from passengers and are well known in Myanmar for providing good services at affordable prices.
You also have the option of choosing a standard bus or a VIP Bus. The VIP buses will offer more comfortable seats and legroom, although they do cost a little extra. You can expect to pay somewhere between $9-$21 depending on which you choose.
The first departure of the day leaves at 09:00 and the final departure leaves at 21:30, the journey will take about 9 hours. We recommend taking a night bus to catch up on some rest and save a few dollars on accommodations for the night.
Departure and arrival
All buses depart from the Chan Mya Shwe Pyi Highway Station (also known as the Highway Bus Station), located 4 kilometers from central Mandalay. A taxi ride to the bus station will cost about $4.
Buses all arrive at the Aung Mingalar Highway Bus Station which is 15 kilometers from downtown Yangon. From the bus station to the city centre, you can take a taxi for about $5 – $7. There is also a shuttle van going to the Sule Pagoda in the centre of Yangon which costs just $1. For a cheaper option, you can take Local Bus Line 36 for only $0.10.
For a truly Burmese experience, you can take the train for the 16.5-hour journey. Travelling by train is a great way to see the country and interact with the locals along the way. It may not the quickest option, but it will surely be a very unique adventure.
The journey takes 16.5 hours and the schedules are quite reliable so you can expect to arrive at your destination by the time indicated in your ticket.
Currently, there are 3 daily trains from Mandalay to Yangon. See the schedules below:
Upper-class seats cost $17 and upper-class sleeping carriages cost $22. We suggest spending the few extra dollars to book a sleeping carriage. This is a very long journey and you’ll want to be as comfortable as possible.
The 2 final departures of the day are the best options as they travel through the night. This will allow you to rest and save a few dollars on accommodation. By taking the night train, you will arrive in Yangon in the morning, ready to drop your bags at your accommodation and start exploring the city!
All trains depart from the Mandalay Central Railway Station located along 78th Street in downtown Mandalay. Arrival is at the Yangon Central Railway Station located along Kun Chan Road in downtown Yangon.
Mandalay to Yangon by Flight
Duration: 1hr 25m
Starts from: $100
Duration: 1hr 25m
The quickest way to travel from Mandalay to Yangon is by taking a 1.5 hr during flight. Flights are more expensive than the other two options, with prices starting at $100, but it will save you hours of travel time.
Mandalay International Airport (MDL) is located 40 kilometers outside of the city centre. Unfortunately, there is no public transport going to the airport so your only option is to take a taxi. Taxi prices are a flat rate of $10 or $4 per person if there are 3 or more passengers.
There are several airlines operating along this route to choose from; Golden Myanmar Airlines, Myanmar Airways International, Myanmar National Airlines, or Air KBZ. Ticket prices start at about $100 for the one-way journey.
When you arrive at the Yangon International Airport (RGN), you can take a taxi to downtown Yangon for about $10. There are also YBS airport shuttle buses that run from the airport to the centre of Yangon, these red-colored buses run 24/7 and charge just $0.30 per passenger.
Situated in Downtown Yangon, The Rangoon Hotel is great value for money considering how nice it is. The rooms are actually nicer than some of the more expensive hotels in Yangon. They’re modern, clean and offer stunning views of the city.
You have to make time to visit the rooftop terrace and bar during your stay. It’s beautifully designed and boasts great city views. Grab a cocktail here and watch the sunset!
Summit Parkview Yangon is set in the perfect location for visiting Downtown Yangon and also its most popular sites. The 4-star hotel offers a comfortable stay with spacious rooms, comfortable beds and even views of nearby famous landmarks.
Onsite you’ll find a gym, spa, nice gardens to relax in and a restaurant. The staff re great and will make you feel instantly welcome.
If you feel like treating yourself, Park Royal Hotel is the place to do that! They have an outdoor swimming pool, a modern gym and a spa for a bit of pampering. There are 3 restaurants to choose from offering a variety of cuisines and dishes.
Staying here puts you in a great location. You’re close to the bus station in Downtown Yangon. The rooms are top quality and luxurious, just like the decor in the rest of the hotel.
Ela is a storyteller, content producer, solo traveller and a mermaid-in-training. When she’s not in front of her laptop, you will find her barefoot and living her best tan on some island in the Philippines… Or exploring the depths of its seas as a budding freediver. An island girl at heart, she’ll be happy anywhere there is sea, sand, sun and coffee.
Based in Bali, Maarten’s passion for travel is undeniable. In 2016, he decided to quit his job as a stock analyst and started doing what he always dreamed of: travelling through South East Asia and helping other people plan their trips. When he is not working on Gecko Routes, you’ll find him surfing in the ocean or exploring the best gems of Indonesia.