2015/16 Myanmar: Motorcycle Trip

Places Myanmar (Burma). Hpa-An, Yangon, Mandalay, Pakokku, Bagan, Monywa, Chin State
Time & length December 2015 – January 2016, 5 weeks
Partners Sofia Matousek, Marie-Luise Gersch, Richard Polsterer
Sofia and I met my sister and her boyfriend in Bangkok, together we crossed the border into Myanmar and celebrated Christmas and New Year’s Eve together. After two weeks, Marie-Luise and Richard left and the tow of us kept traveling around the country on motorcycle.

After a week in India, Sofia and I flew into Bangkok and stayed with our new American friends, the Quinley family, who run a Thai NGO. On December 22, my sister Marie-Luise and her boyfriend Richard came to visit us – the plan was to spend Christmas and New Year’s Eve as a group of four in Myanmar. We picked them up from the Bangok airport, had dinner together at the Quinley’s house and took a night bus to Mae Sot, close to the Thai-Myanmarese border. Then we spend two nights in the area of Pha-An, where we celebrated Christmas, rented motorcycles and explored the area.

We then continued to Yangon. In the biggest city of Myanmar, we split up: my sister and Richard went to Bagan and from there took the ferry to Mandalay. Sofia and I went straight to Mandalay and spent some time recovering from the past few weeks which were quite intense.

When they arrived in Mandalay, we rented motorcycles and drove east. Here are the pictures of a 7-day round trip, including our private little New Year’s Eve party at a campfire within a small monastery complex. We had an awesome time together!

My sister and Richard flew from Mandalay to Bangkok and then back home again. For them, it was just a two-week trip, but our 8-months journey continued. Before we started our long river expedition in the south, we wanted to do another motorcycle tour in central and eastern Myanmar. This time we went on a 12-day trip and drove deep into Chin State. On the way we passed the temples and pagodas of Bagan, visited an abandoned wooden monastery, visited the Chin people and took pictures of their elderly woman, who at very young age got their faces tattooed as part of a cultural ritual that is about to die out.

On January 21, Sofia and I took the train from Mandalay to Yangon where we picked up our new inflatable expedition canoe and got ready for our river trip on the Tanintharyi River (Great Tenasserim).