Zoological Gardens – Yangon

Zoological Gardens, Yangon.

 

Admissions details

Entrance price: $2 USD for foreigners

Trading hours: 8 AM – 6 PM

The zoological gardens is located about a 30 minute walk away from Shwedagon Pagoda on foot or is about 5 minutes away in a taxi which should cost no more than $1-2 USD. The zoological garden hosts a large variety of animals, including white tigers (pictured to the left), Burmese pythons, an array of bird life and many different breads of monkeys.

Typically, I have never been a big fan of zoos. I did not really enjoy the Singapore zoo and don’t tend to find looking at sleeping animals to be all that entertaining. However, I thoroughly enjoyed my visit to this zoo. It was very easy to navigate and the animals were quite active during my visit.

A highlight of my visit to the garden was the ability to personally feed animals. Depending on the basket of items purchased, you can purchase green leafy vegetables, bananas, or bamboo for anywhere in between 500 to a 1000 Kyat (which currently is inbetween 50 cents and $1 USD). Despite only paying $2 USD for entrance, I left a very poor man after spending a lot of money on different items of food. Being able to feed the animals yourself is a lot of fun and provides for lots of good photos!

 

(beware: sneaking bears will steal vegetables if not careful)

From my own perspective, the living conditions in the zoo were very reasonable. Most animals had more than adequate area to roam around and pens were typically quite clean. However, some animals may have been a little bit undernourished and I was hopeful that some of the larger animals and dangerous animals (such as the tigers and elephants). Moreover, given the living conditions of the general population, it is probably fair to say they are living in better conditions than some of the population.

Although not boasting the most comprehensive range of animals, this is by far one of  the more enjoyable zoo’s that I have visited and is definitely a worthwhile visit if you are over looking at temples or have a few hours to kill. I went early(ish) in the morning and most of the animals were reasonably active at this time.

It’s also located near Kan Daw Gyi Lake and Schwedegon Pagoda, so it is possible to visit all of these attractions during the same day.

 

Is it difficult to be vegetarian in Myanmar

No. It is not difficult to be vegetarian in Myanmar.

It is difficult speaking to the locals if you do not understand the local language, but there are plenty of vegetarian options available.

Unlike in Japan and China, the concept if you can communicate it to your host, is typically understood. You may need to specify that you do not wish to have fish in your meal, but due to the ethnic diversity, they will understand that there are people who choose not to eat all forms of meat. Try saying that in Japan, and they will just think you eat fish. Or chicken. Or some other strange form of animal anatomy which you did not even know existed.

In some of the more touristy places, there are western restaurants where it is possible to find western and vegetarian food, like pizza and pasta.

In Bagan, there are restaurants titled “vegetarian restaurants”. However, I also saw one serving meat, so do not lower your guard too much.

 

Chef’s typically are very accommodating, so if you ask for a meal without the meat it should not be too much of a problem.

The food often gets described as a mix between Thai, Chinese and Indian – which is a bit simplistic, but not too far from the truth either. One thing is for sure is that the food is very, very greasy.

All in all, you should not have too much trouble as long as you are a little bit discerning. And patient!

 

 

Ho