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From Yangon Central to Mandalay by train

06:00
Yangon Central
21:00
Mandalay Central
15h
Refund
15:00
Yangon Central
05:10
Mandalay Central
14h 10m
Refund
17:00
Yangon Central
07:45
Mandalay Central
14h 45m
Refund
17:00
Yangon Central
07:45
Mandalay Central
14h 45m
Refund

From Aung Mingalar to Mandalay by bus

09:00
Aung Mingalar, Yangon
18:00
Chan Mya Shwe Pyi Kywel Sal Kan , Mandalay
9h
09:00
Aung Mingalar, Yangon
18:00
Chan Mya Shwe Pyi Kywel Sal Kan , Mandalay
9h
09:00
Aung Mingalar, Yangon
18:00
Chan Mya Shwe Pyi Kywel Sal Kan , Mandalay
9h
09:00
Aung Mingalar, Yangon
18:00
Chan Mya Shwe Pyi Kywel Sal Kan , Mandalay
9h
21:00
Aung Mingalar, Yangon
06:00
Chan Mya Shwe Pyi Kywel Sal Kan , Mandalay
9h
21:00
Aung Mingalar, Yangon
05:30
Chan Mya Shwe Pyi Kywel Sal Kan , Mandalay
8h 30m
21:30
Aung Mingalar, Yangon
05:00
Chan Mya Shwe Pyi Kywel Sal Kan , Mandalay
7h 30m
21:30
Aung Mingalar, Yangon
06:30
Chan Mya Shwe Pyi Kywel Sal Kan , Mandalay
9h

From Yangon Airport to Mandalay by flight

07:30
RGN Yangon Airport
08:25
MDL Annisaton Airport, Mandalay
55m
Instant
 
12:30
RGN Yangon Airport
13:25
MDL Annisaton Airport, Mandalay
55m
Instant
 
13:00
RGN Yangon Airport
14:25
MDL Annisaton Airport, Mandalay
1h 25m
Instant
 
15:45
RGN Yangon Airport
16:40
MDL Annisaton Airport, Mandalay
55m
Instant
 
18:45
RGN Yangon Airport
20:10
MDL Annisaton Airport, Mandalay
1h 25m
Instant
 

How to get from Yangon to Mandalay

Sitting almost 630 km north of Yangon, the former royal capital and the second-largest city in Myanmar can be easily reached by bus, rail or flight. The majority of package tourists with limited time make a quick hop between the two cities – flying takes less than one and a half hour. Travelling overland is obviously more tiring and takes from 10 to 15 hours depending on the means of transport you opt for. Buses are often cramped but in general are faster and cheaper than trains. Trains are surprisingly punctual and offer several types of carriages to choose from.

From Yangon to Mandalay by train

The major part of the railway tracks in Myanmar is British built. The two main railway hubs, Yangon and Mandalay, are connected by rail with each other and lower and upper part of the country respectively.

Note In 2012 massive changes into train schedule in Myanmar were introduced, but there is still a lot of out-of-date information on the web – always double-check the information when planning your train journey. Myanmar Railways themselves neither have the official web site, nor support online booking.

Travelling from Yangon to Mandalay by train is a great experience in itself. The route is if not scenic in the full sense of the word, yet gives you the taste of the real country with slender silhouettes of palm trees against the sky, grazing buffalos, vendors patrolling the carriages at the stations and carrying their goods on their heads and local children happily waving to the passing by trains.

The whole journey takes 15 hours and trains are almost always depart and arrive exactly on schedule. Currently there are three daily trains to Mandalay – one morning train #11 leaving Yangon at 6am and arriving to Mandalay at 9pm and two afternoon trains – at 3pm (#5) and at 5pm (#3). Schedule-wise they are the most convenient way to get to Mandalay bringing you to your destination early in the morning (at 6am and 8am respectively). Note though, that neither train #11 nor train #5 have sleeping carriages and offer seats only.

There are two types of seats – ordinary seats and upper class seats. The former are the cheapest way to travel but are far from being comfortable. Basically they are just usual hard seats and nothing else. Upper class seats are soft reclining seats though in some carriages you may found them in fully reclined mode without a chance to put them into upright position. These seats cost twice as much as ordinary seats (MMK30,000/USD20-USD25).

Train #3 has both seats and sleeping carriages. The latter are closed compartments for four passengers with two lower and two upper berths and are definitely a great choice for families or groups of friends. Berths cost about USD6-USD8 more compared to upper class seats.

Note There is no air-conditioning in carriages. Some have ceiling fans and others get their portion of fresh air from the open windows but generally it is not a problem even if travelling during the hottest months (April and May). It also pays to have some warm clothes at hand as it can get rather chilly at night.

In Yangon, Yangon Central Railway Station is located in Kun Chan Road, opposite the stadium. In Mandalay, the railway station sits at the intersection of 79 Street and 30 Street, south of the south-western corner of the park surrounding the Royal Palace.

Tip Trains (except for the express ones) heading from Yangon to Mandalay, pass Bago, the jumping point to the Golden Rock. If Kyaiktiyo Mount is in your must-visit list, consider visiting it first and then hopping onto the train to Mandalay in Bago.

From Yangon to Mandalay by bus

There are several bus stations in Yangon, but the main one for Mandalay-bound buses is Highway Bus Station, aka Aung Mingalar Bus Terminal. It is located well out of the city, 500 m east off Aung Mingalar Highway, between Sat Hmu Street and Sa Gaing Street; further 7 km northeast from Yangon International airport.

Bus tickets can be purchased in the city from counters by the stadium, north of Yangon Central Railway Station. You will surely enjoy the process – normally nobody uses computer systems and when you need a ticket there are at least several people involved to discuss, to phone each other, to make a note in a notebook. But somehow it all functions quite ok – if you get your ticket, you will get a seat, too; do not worry.

The majority of the bus companies offer transfer to the bus terminal as well – a seat in a shared taxi costs MMK1.000 (a bit less than USD1). Bus tickets cost between MMK12,000/USD10 and MMK23,000/USD17. Do not expect extra comfort – buses are usually cramped with rather limited leg space and worn-out though now several ‘Elite’ buses with three seats per row instead of usual four also serve the route and are recommended if you decide to travel by bus. The journey takes from 8 to 10 hours with late afternoon and evening departures available.

Buses from Yangon arrive to Mandalay Highway Bus Station located 8 km from the city centre. To get to the city, you have three options: a taxi, a motorbike taxi or a pick-up truck which is basically the local form of public transport. Taxis offer quite inflated rates – e.g. MMK7,000 per vehicle; motorbike taxis are cheaper (MMK2,500). To get a ride in a pick-up truck you have to walk out of the station to the road where they will be more than happy to give you a lift for MMK500-MMK1000.

Flights from Yangon to Mandalay

Yangon to Mandalay is arguably the most popular air route in Myanmar. It is served by a handful of regional and domestic airline companies including Myanmar Airways, Air Mandalay and Yangon Airways among others. Together they operate up to a dozen daily flights. Prices normally start from USD100 one-way and include checked luggage – though it always pays to check with the airline in advance. Flying time is from one hour to 1 hour 25 minutes.

In Yangon, Yangon International airport lies 17 km north from the Central Railway Station. It is not served by public transport – to get there you have to take a taxi (MMK8,000/USD8). You still can cover the major part of the distance between the city and the airport by bus – look for any bus heading to Maha Si (ask locals, otherwise you are unlikely to figure out which bus is ok for you) and then walk up Yangon Airport Road – it is 2.5 km to the terminal building. A taxi from the stop should cost you about USD1.

Mandalay International airport sits 45 km southwest, a good deal away from the city. Taxi fares to the city, to our big surprise, are rather reasonable: expect to pay MMK12,000/USD10 for a private vehicle. Shared options are also available (MMK4,000/USD4). If you have already booked your hotel in Mandalay, check with your host first if they provide transfer from the airport. Even if they do not, they can help to organise it at a bit lower price.

Why go to Mandalay

Gold leaves-clad Buddha images, wide lanes and boulevards, and a wealth of historical towns like Mingun, Inwa, Sagaing and Amarapura dotting the environs of the city make Mandalay a great stop in your Burmese itinerary. Well, even the only name of the city is intriguing! Mandalay – oh, are you serious? Does it really exist? Yes, it does! You may find the views from Mandalay Hill less scenic than those over the endless pagodas of Bagan from atop of one of its temples; the city itself less meditative than Nyaungshwe by the Inle Lake; and less hectic and lacking that colonial heritage Yangon is proud of. But Mandalay definitely offers enough activities to keep you busy for days: witness daily washing of Buddha’s face at Mahamuni Paya; take a stroll over the cult U-Bein bridge and watch the locals hurrying up on their daily routine over the bridge at sunset; admire an amazing puppet show Mandalay-style; or learn to cook those mouth-watering Burmese curries during the cooking class in Yoe Yoe Lay Guesthouse – and your own road to Mandalay will add a zest to your whole Myanmar trip.

Onward travel from Mandalay

If you are following the Big Four itinerary, your two next destinations are either Bagan (from 5 hours; MMK10,000/USD9) or Taunggyi (for Inle Lake) (10 hours; MMK10,000/USD9). Both are connected to Mandalay by buses leaving from Highway Bus Station. If heading to Bagan, you can add a bit of colour to your trip taking a bus to Pakkoku first and then boarding a boat from Pakkoku to Nyaung-U (one hour). Nyaung-U has a very specific means of public transport in the form of horse-carriages (you can take the same carriage to tour the temples of Bagan, too).

Buses to seaside destinations like Sittwe and Thandwe (for Ngapali Beach) are also available. They depart from Hlaing Thar Yar Bus Terminal in Mandalay. Note that the journey is quite long and bumpy and takes from 15 to 17 hours. Buses to Sittwe pass via Mrauk-U, the 15-century capital of Arakanese Kingdom. Do not miss it, if old temples are your thing.

In recent years a handful of international flights from Mandalay have been introduced, and now there are direct air links to Chiang Mai and Bangkok in Thailand, Singapore and Hong Kong from one to seven times a week depending on the destination.

Passenger reviews out of total 857 passengers who traveled with us on this route.

At 12Go our operators offer three types of service:

Cheap, Fast, Good - but you can usually pick only two of them!
Cheap & Fast won’t be Good. (e.g. buses from/to Khao San Road, local buses or 3rd class trains)
Cheap & Good won’t be Fast. (e.g. VIP trains in Thailand)
Fast & Good won’t be Cheap. (e.g. private limousine services, or VIP24 buses vs Express buses)

Make your choice! Please remember that while we are closely monitoring the services, we are still an agency marketplace. That means we focus on ticketing services and route availability & coverage rather than on the factual seat reclining angle you will get on the bus today.

Mar 28, 2018
train #3 Sleeper, Myanmar Railways
★★★★☆
It's a great third world experience. Hot then cold. Noisy. Dirty bathrooms. FANTASTIC TRIP. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.
Mar 27, 2018
train #3 Sleeper, Myanmar Railways
★★★★☆
Would recommend this when it's a bit cooler (I did it at the end of March when it was 37C). For a narrow gauge train on questionable track, it goes quite fast, so the ride ia very lively!
Feb 17, 2018
train #3 Sleeper, Myanmar Railways
★★★★☆
I have given it four rather than five because of two reasons. Although the departure was on time, it arrived 45 minutes late, not really a big deal, but I guess for the perfect five you have to run to schedule. The second reason was that the nights really are pretty cold, certainly in mid February when we travelled, and it would be good if they provided a blanket as well as the thin sheet they issued. Luckily we had enough warm clothing in our luggage. Some reviewers on here have said the train is too noisy to sleep. Well, my response to that is "harden up, princess!" It's an old train running on narrow gauge non-welded track, so it sways and goes clackety-clack. What else did anyone expect here in third-world Myanmar? The Shinkansen??? We actually slept very well while it was running, but it was the occasional stops at stations along the way which woke us from time to time, as the hypnotic rhythm of the train in motion ceased, and also there were voices in the corridor and outside as people got on and off. I was travelling with my wife, and we had a two-berth cabin, when we thought we would be sharing a four-berth with strangers, so that was a plus. We were really glad we took the train, and would happily do it again.
Feb 3, 2018
train #11 Upper Class, Myanmar Railways
★★★★☆
This was a 15 and a half hour train journey which I had planned. As far as the journey itself, it went without a hitch. Trouble free. All staff were very friendly and helpful. The seating was a little basic but “Upper Class” was the way to travel as the seats were recliners and cushioned unlike standard seating so well worth the little extra cost. The whole journey was the experience I had expected and apart from being a little unsteady on my feet for a few hours after, it was a great and different way to see a bit of Myanmar.
Jan 25, 2018
train #3 Sleeper, Myanmar Railways
★★★★★
Excellent service. Thank you
Jan 24, 2018
train #3 Sleeper, Myanmar Railways
★★★★★
Все отлично.
Jan 23, 2018
train #3 Sleeper, Myanmar Railways
★★☆☆☆
What could have been a charming experience was spoiled by the squalid conditions on the train. The absence of any food or refreshment from the train co and the nice sharing the first class sleeper compartment with us.
Jan 21, 2018
train #3 Sleeper, Myanmar Railways
★★★★★
A bumpy ride :-)
Jan 14, 2018
train #3 Sleeper, Myanmar Railways
★★★★☆
This was a great experience and interestingly the train was on time leaving Yangon and on time arriving in Mandalay. As others have mentioned the sleeper car compartments have 4 berths and we were lucky enough to share with a charming couple from the UK. The agency 12Go Asia was less impressive but not sure how else you can buy the tickets. In the end they did what they said what they would do but they could have told us more explicitly that they had moved and as a previous reviewer wrote the building was not so easy to find (why don't they enclose a simple map?)
Jan 11, 2018
train #3 Sleeper, Myanmar Railways
★★★☆☆
Our compartment was very old and dirty. I could not sleep because noisi train.
Jan 5, 2018
train #11 Upper Class, Myanmar Railways
★★★★☆
Is a Adventure trip????Great
Jan 4, 2018
train #3 Sleeper, Myanmar Railways
★★★★☆
Overall trip was fun and interesting. Had a bit of misunderstanding with the train staff and thought meals were provided as part of the ticket after the staff said it was free and was then surprised with a bill at end of the journey. Thankfully it wasn't ridiculous but still probably wouldn't have order breakfast and coffee if it wasn't free. Also plan your bathroom breaks when the train is slowing down near a station so that you can go while the train is still and not bouncing wildly.
Jan 2, 2018
train #3 Sleeper, Myanmar Railways
★★★★★
Excellent. 12go are the best! Very helpful and reliable.
Nov 21, 2017
train #3 Sleeper, Myanmar Railways
★★★★☆
Although the train bumpy, small insects disturbing around an hour....it is still worth to try....we took photo of the sun rise during the trip...
Aug 13, 2017
bus Express, Yazar Tun
★★★★☆
The bus was very nice. The women at the ticket office were helpful and friendly. The negatives: only one stop on a 9 hour journey for women.... the men stopped to relieve themselves roadside several times but us women had no options. Also, timeliness... ran 1.5 hours behind schedule so dont make plans close to estimated arrival time. All-in-all kind staff and safe driving!!!
Jul 23, 2017
train #3 Sleeper, Myanmar Railways
★★★★☆
Our trip on the 5pm sleeper from Yangon to Mandalay was lots of fun. We shared a 4 berth sleeper compartment with a Burmese couple. It was a corridor sleeper carriage so we dined in the restaurant car. Reasonable food but quite pricey! We managed to get some sleep overnight. Recommended to do this at least once in Myanmar.