The Localist

Inya Lake


In Yangon (Myanmar), we don’t have a lot of parks and public recreational spots. So when we think of places to go relax with family or friends, only a few places come to mind.

Inya Lake is my favourite place to go in the evenings, especially when I want to get out of the house and away from the busy street our house is located on. However, this is probably not a great reason for people who don’t live in the area to visit the lake. The parking isn’t big or convenient and there isn’t a large area where families can relax and hang out.

For people who live nearby, this is the place to go for a walk along the bank of the lake, and to eat and chat at the food stalls and restaurants located at the end of the bank walk. These food stalls offer traditional Burmese food, and other ethnic food like tofu fritters served with a side salad.

Inya Lake is popular among couples. The lake is often featured in movies as the date spot for couples and university students, as the lake is within walking distance of Yangon University. The Yangon Sailing club is also located on this lake and it has swimming, sailing and rowing activities. However, it’s rare to see these activities actually taking place, and the club is rather exclusive.

The lake is bordered by Pyay Road (one of the busiest roads in Yangon), so if you face towards the street, all you’ll see are cars and busy traffic, but if you turn your back on the street, and look at the lake, it’s a completely different view.

Despite the fact that I live about 5 mins walk from the lake, I don’t frequent it as much as I did when I was young. There are usually a lot of people there in the evenings and it is getting more and more crowded these days. My favourite memory of this place was when we went there at night as a family, and we just walked along the bank and talked about this and that.

This bank walk is also my dad’s favourite place for a morning jog. It’s quite popular among people in the area for walking and morning exercises. Before the sun rises, in the morning mist, it is one of the most beautiful sights in the city (pictured above). My dad tells me that he doesn’t like the area during winter, as the bank walk path gets even more crowded than usual. For most people, it gets too warm really early in the mornings during summer to go jogging, so winter is the time when girls and boys pick out their best sweaters, jumpers and beanies, and show off their style on the bank of Inya Lake.

I definitely miss walking along the lake, especially with my dad, but I don’t think it has the same sentiment it had when I was a child. For locals in the area, this is definitely the spot to walk and spend some quality family time.





Image. Photo by Myanmar: Choice to Travel Asia

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