Eating, drinking and nightlife in Yangon (Rangoon)

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The variety of cultures in Yangon mean that a delicious host of cuisines are available – from native Myanmar cuisine, including popular Bamar and Shan dishes, to the staples of Chinese, Thai, Indian and western food. The many teahouses in the city don’t only offer tea – they are great places to eat and mingle with locals or just people watch. And Yangon’s nightlife, after years in the doldrums, is beginning to take off.

Vista Bar with view of Shwedagon Pagoda

Below you will find an overview of the best restaurants and teahouses in Yangon (suiting a variety of budgets), as well as some information on Yangon’s bars and nightclubs. To find out more about food, eating out, drinking and bars across Myanmar, go to things to do.

Restaurants

Great places to eat can be found by simply wandering around the streets of downtown Yangon; Chinatown, centred around 19th Street and Mahabandoola Road, is a particularly good place to find restaurants and stalls selling dishes from all over Asia. And Shwe Bon Tha Street and its surrounds in Little India are host to hundreds of vendors selling a range of tasty chapattis, samosas and other Indian fare. Below is a selection of some of the best restaurants in Yangon.

Cheap and cheerful

Mid-range

House of Memories

High end

Teahouses and cafés

As with restaurants, there are fun and lively teahouses to be discovered on many streets around the city; they often make a great place to head for breakfast. There are also a growing number of western-style cafés dotted around town.

Here are some teahouse and café highlights:

Nightlife

With the changes that are taking place in Myanmar, Yangon’s nightlife is now flourishing. Until a few years ago, there was little to do after 10pm, but there are now an increasing number of bars and clubs open late – although for most locals drinking still centres around street-side beer stations, so don’t expect a scene anything like Bangkok or Hong Kong.

Local options

19th Street (in Chinatown, west end of downtown) not only offers an eclectic range of food, but is also a colourful and atmospheric place to find inexpensive local beers and cocktails and soak up Yangon’s atmosphere at night. There are many lively beer stations up and down the middle block of 19th Street; the most foreigner-orientated in terms of decor and menu is Kosan (108, 19th Street), but a lively time can be had wherever you find yourself.

A similarly vibrant, but less touristy, area to head for a local drink is Sanchaung Street to the north west of downtown (K2,500 taxi from downtown). There are a number of large beer stations that line the eastern section of the street, the most popular of which is Win Star ; for a late closing option try Terminal 5 bar. 

A less conventional, but no less lively, drinking spot can be found even further out of town at Thiri Mingalar Market. Few foreigners make it out to this huge place, which has a number of teahouses and beer stations located at the very back (near the river). Like the market itself, they are open 24 hours a day. Thiri Mingalar Market can be found on Bayint Naung Road in Hlaing Township, K3500 taxi from downtown.

Western bars and nights out

Yangon has an increasing selection of more upmarket options, and you can find a list of some of the best listed below. Most high-end hotels in Yangon also have a bar attached that is open till late; the Strand Bar at the famous old Strand Hotel is the most well known.

Yangon's best bars…

If you’re after something a bit different, there are regular Saturday sunset boat parties on the Yangon River during the dry season that leave from Botahtaung jetty or Wardan jetty (monthly on Saturdays, check local listings) and occasional Friday and Saturday DJ nights at the Institut Francais

Nightclubs

Yangon’s clubbing scene is pretty limited, and entrance fees and drinks can be pricy. However, there is fun to be had – although male travellers should be aware that many local women at these places may be ‘ladies of the night’! Here are some of the nightclub options, all of which are a taxi ride to the north of downtown:

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