Like we said here, due to a combination of high demand and government restrictions on which guesthouses can and can’t admit foreigners, accommodation in Myanmar right now is a little scarce and relatively pricey.
That said, we were pleasantly surprised by the places we stayed during our three week trip (February– March, 2013):
Mayflower Hotel, Yangon: Mayflower was by far the fanciest and most expensive place we stayed. It was quite nice, but all the door opening, bowing, and bag-carrying made us feel a little odd– we’re but simple backpacking folk, after all. We chose it partly because it was the only place that replied to our emails!
Location: Near Bogyoke Market, Yangon.
Facilities: In room wifi (surprisingly good!), cheap minibar, TV, free breakfast (completely average), and attached bathroom with hot/cold shower.
Contact details: firstname.lastname@example.org
Pann Cherry Guesthouse, Nyaung-U, Bagan: We ended up at Pann Cherry on the recommendation of the trishaw driver who greeted us straight off the night bus. He promised us a $25 room and we ended up paying $15 to stay in a sort of converted garage out the back. Sweet deal! Sure, the power went out pretty frequently, the fans were a bit dodgy, we had a concrete floor, and were a wee way away from the bathroom block, but still. It was cheap and clean. And did I mention cheap?
Location: Near Nyaung-u, a couple of minutes’ walk from the bus station.
Facilities: Standing fan, shared bathroom, cool big padlock for door.
Honey Pine Hotel, Kalaw: The nicest place we stayed, hands down. We wandered into Honey Pine straight off the bus, and took a room on the spot. It’s a little expensive, but the staff are lovely. Plus, their welcome cordial was awesome.
It was almost empty when we stayed, so I imagine booking isn’t necessary.
Location: On the main drag of Kalaw. You’ll see it as soon as you get off the bus.
Facilities: Cheap minibar, TV, free breakfast, and attached bathroom with hot/cold shower. The lobby promised us wifi, but never delivered.
Golden Kalaw Inn, Kalaw: While we loved Honey Pine, we were on the lookout for something a little cheaper. On our second night in Kalaw, we stayed at the very cheap and very popular Golden Kalaw Inn. Not to be confused with the Golden Lily next door (which the internet tells me is rubbish). The staff were chill and the breakfast chapati was awesome.
Location: Up a hill, a few minutes from the bus stop.
Facilities: Attached bathroom with hot/cold shower, fan (Kalaw is pretty cool, at least comparatively, so aircon isn’t really necessary), free (and delicious) breakfast.
Contact details: email@example.com
Remember Inn, Inle Lake: We booked a room in advance here, mostly because we needed a place to get our luggage delivered to while we trekked over from Kalaw. It’s a pretty popular place to be and not bad value.
Location: About a 15 minutes walk from the river and Nyaung-shwe town, but close to some rad cafes and restaurants.
Facilities: Attached bathroom with hot/cold shower, aircon, free breakfast (served on the rooftop), slightly temperamental wifi.
Contact details: Phone +95 081 209257, or contact them via their website.
AD1 Hotel, Mandalay: We got a hot tip about AD1 from a friend who arrived in Mandalay the night before we did. He tried a couple of places beforehand, with no luck. AD1 was nothing to write home about, but was fairly good value for Mandalay. Plus their free breakfast included two bananas each. Fuck yeah. They also let us check in at 4am and stay the rest of the night for free!
Location: Near the Chinese Market. Eindawya Sintada Street, Chan Aye Thar San Township.
Facilities: Attached bathroom with hot/cold shower, aircon, free breakfast (served on the rooftop), wifi.
Contact details: Phone +95 9 69 71116 (I stole this from the lonely planet, so can’t actually confirm its accuracy)
Sunflower Hotel, Yangon: We stayed here on our last night in Myanmar. Having heard about some cheap places in Yangon, we decided to try our luck wandering, rather than book ahead. We got into town late, and the super-budget places were all full, so we ended up at Sunflower Hotel, sort of the younger brother of Mayflower. I was sick as a dog, so the 6 flights of stairs were more of a challenge than they usually would be. But, overall, it was pretty sweet– cheapish, spacious, and clean.
Location: Anarwatha Rd, Yangon.
Facilities: Aircon, TV, shared bathroom with hot/cold shower, free breakfast, decent wifi.
Contact details: firstname.lastname@example.org