It’s the end of our travels around Myanmar and we have loved the country and the people. Our travels have taken in bicycles, trekking, buses, cars and oh, the trains. We’ve travelled just as far from side to side on the trains as we have forward (and backwards!). We’ll be taking a shared taxi (there’s no appropriate buses here) from Mawlamyine to Sukhothai, via the Thai border town of Mae Sot.
It’s an easy trip. A 15,000 kyat (US$11.68, GBP7.73) each shared taxi (there’s one other person and he gets the front seat) picks us up at 0735 and we head east. The road is pretty, but our driver isn’t stopping for photos.
We get a 10 minute break that turns into 20 at 1025, when our driver and our Burmese travel mate have an early lunch, or a late breakfast at what passes for a truck stop here and then we’re off again.
After that the roads become increasingly pot holed and bumpy and definitely not wide enough for the trucks that hurtle towards us.
Suddenly the back seat seems like a much better if not particularly comfortable option. Mind you at least we’re not walking or on a bike, but they seem fearless, so good on them.
There used to be a single track road here to cross the “mountain” and depending on the day (even or odd) you could only go in one direction, so you had to plan your border crossing carefully! Now there’s a marvellous new road opened up and traffic can flow in both directions.
We arrive in Myawaddy, the Burmese border town just before noon and change all our remaining kyat into dollars – as the only options as Singaporean dollars or Euros, not Thai Baht.
We walk across another border and another Friendship Bridge, clearing immigration easily into Thailand and then find the songthaews that will take us to the bus station here in Mae Sot. It’s 20 THB (US$0.56, GBP 0.37) in the songthaew which fills quickly, or 60 THB each to take a motorbike taxi.
Our transport stops on a dual carriageway and points to the bus station on the other side, and so we arrive in time to miss the 1330 bus, which is already full, but catch the last bus to Sukhothai which leaves at 1440, time for some spicy Thai food.
It’s good to be back!
- Where we stayed in Mawlamyine – the Sandalwood Hotel
- Where we stayed in Sukhothai – the Blue House
- What to Eat in Myanmar