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Off the Beaten Track

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What’s better than getting free consultation on alternate routes in Burma (Myanmar) from a local who used to be a guide? Getting that advice while having a drink in a cafe at Off the Beaten Track, that’s what.

Gazebo tables draped in cloth - choose the colour to compliment your drink.

Choose a colour to complement your drink.

Off The Beaten Track in Kandawgyi Lake park is a lovely spot where travellers can stop in and get information on places that aren’t on the mainstream tourist trail while having a beer and something to eat, or attending one of their art shows or reggae nights.

Only 50 metres from the entrance - you can’t miss that yellow sign

You can’t miss that yellow sign.

You couldn’t ask for a better location to meet and greet while getting away from the city’s bustle. Aiming to counter the more formal tours popular in Burma, the three founders set up shop with the purpose of informing the independent traveller about things to see across the country. Nay Lin Htike, who has been in the travel industry for more than 17 years, is the face you’re most likely to see when you stop in — he makes a point of greeting everyone who comes in.

They also provide storage space to those who wish to leave their luggage if they’re going away for a few days, and host a small library and book exchange.

The cafe/bar itself consists of tables within charming dark-wood gazebos with a bell on the table to call for your waiter. You probably won’t need it until you want the bill, as staff are attentive and friendly. The menu is quite entertaining. You’ll find items such as “The Upper Burma”, a selection of dried beans and a Mandalay rum and coke; “the Yangonite”, a small tea leaf salad and small Myanmar whisky bottle, and “the NGO Worker”, a plate of French fries and a shot of vodka.

Simply to the point


OTBT also hosts weekly Reggae and movie nights, and are poised to open an in-house gallery where local artists show and sell their work. The proceeds of most events and art sales go to charity.

OTBT is located at the northeast entrance of Kandawgyi Lake, next to Lover’s Island, at the entrance nearest the Chatrium Hotel. This area of the lake is packed with hip local bars and cafes and costs 300 kyat to enter, but it’s a small price to pay if you’re looking to have a relaxing afternoon while nutting out solid travel info.


Off the Beaten Track
Kandawgyi Park at Nat Mauk and Kyaik Ka San Rds, intersection near Chatrium Hotel
Daily 11:00-23:00
T: (09) 510 2657, (09) 2540 18889
Admission: 300 kyat to park

Location map for Off the Beaten Track

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