Charlie Costello in Burma

It’s Burma Time

It’s 5:30 am on my last day in Burma. The full moon was last night so I was hoping for a setting moon in the morning over the city. On the shores of Yangon’s Kandawgyi Lake, the black birds were assembled by the hundreds. Shwedagon Pagoda at Sunrise Their familiar ‘kaw kaw’ combined with the […]

Mrauk U – A majestic city in Rakhine State, Burma

I was finally headed to Mrauk U (pronounced “Mraw Oo”) after a failed attempt in February 2014. This ancient royal city had been on my travel map since my first trip to Burma in 2011. Founded in 1430 A.D. it was the seat of the Rakhine kingdom for more than 300 years. It sits about […]

Situation in Sittwe

I arrived in Myanmar, otherwise known as Burma, for the third time in four years and things felt different. It seemed calmer, the sense that someone was watching you wasn’t there anymore – that is until I arrived in Rakhine State. Fisherman – Sittwe, Burma Upon arrival in Sittwe, my passport was examined closely, numbers […]

A slice of life, an elephant’s life

An elephant’s life in Myanmar, otherwise known as Burma, can be a treacherous and hard life. Estimates say that elephants in Burma can be worked moving between 800 and 1000 tons of weight per year. These elephants are often controlled and hence trained using sharp hooks that puncture the thinner skin between the ears and […]