“Yangon Central Station”
Yangon, Myanmar. November 2019 (12 photos)
Yangon, formerly known as Rangoon, is the largest city in Myanmar with a population of over 7 million. The name Yangon is derived from the combination of the Burmese words ‘yan’ and ‘koun’, which mean ‘enemies’ and ‘run out of’, respectively. This word combination is commonly translated as ‘End of Strife’. It’s rather ironic given the history of Yangon and Myanmar. Anyway, here are some more photos from my walks in Yangon: Scenes from the end of strife, particularly taken on my visits to Yangon Central Railway Station.
“At the ticket office”
In Burmese script, words are not separated by spaces or punctuation. Seeing signs written in Burmese was mostly very perplexing and intimidating. I walked to the ticket counter in trepidation. Eventually I worked out I was at the wrong ticket counter for the train I wanted to ride.
Yangon Central Railway Station was first built in 1877 by the British. The building was designed in the British Victorian style and the access roads were bordered by grassy lawns. The beauty of the property prompted locals to praise the new structure as the Fairy Station.
In Myanmar, it seemed to be normal for people to walk across and along railway tracks even as trains approach (bottom right in photo above).
The station became a favourite target for Japanese bombers during World War II. In 1943 it was destroyed by British forces retreating to India from the advancing Japanese army.
“Monk at the station”
I took the photo above on my first day in Myanmar, because seeing a monk at the station seemed like a novelty. Little did I realise that I would see hundreds more monks during my visit to Myanmar.
“Little red engine”
The station was rebuilt following the war according to a design drawn by engineer Hla Thwin and based on Burmese traditional architectural styles, making prominent use of indigenous tiered roofs called pyatthat. The opening ceremony of the new Yangon Central Railway Station was held on 5 June 1954.
Most trains in Myanmar are very old retired trains from Japan Rail. Watching these guys tinkering about, I kind of had second thoughts about taking the train.
“Bird on a train”
“Woman with a sack on her head”
I just sat for a while on a bench. People passed by regularly carrying goods on their heads.
A slow moving train passing by.