Taungoo is located in Bago Region of Myanmar 220 km North east of Yangon within 3-4hrs drive from Yangon. It is sided by mountain ranges to both east and west. The main industry is in forestry products, with teak and other hardwoods extracted from the mountains.
Taungoo’s main attraction is a nearby forest elephants camp. The city is also known for its areca palms producing Burmese loved betel nuts.
Taungoo city foundation dates back to 1280 in the waning days of Pagan as part of frontier expansion southwards. After the fall of Pagan Empire in 1287. Taungoo was ruled several kingdoms and dynasties until the royal capital was moved further south to Pegu (aka Bago).
The city itself is fairly quiet but local markets are always interesting to visit, Kandawgyi (Royal) Lake near downtown is a nice place to walk around. Near the city there is a Japanese cemetery dating back to second world war, with a memorial to the deceased.
Out of town day trips and highlights include former British Hill Station Thandaung and Pho Kyar Elephant camp.
The Pho Kyar elephant camp is a two hour drive from Taungoo. The camp is a cluster of houses with a couple small tea shops and a village school built with funding received from elephant tourism. The oozies as elephant handlers are called in Myanmar spend large part of their life with their elephants and take good care of them.
Taungoo city is one of the old Burmese kingdoms located 4.5hrs drive North of Yangon. By train from Yangon the journey takes approx. 6hrs. If you leave early morning with own car from Yangon you can visit the elephant camp on the same day but more enjoyable way is to spend a night in Tangoo first and go near morning after a good night of sleep.
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