We took a short flight in a small plane from Yangon, met with Wyn our new guide and were soon on the road to Mandalay. A surprisingly good road, more like a UK dual carriageway, but as she explained Mandalay is the centre of the commercial world for Myanmar with a 300 mile direct access into China, India and Thailand so the government has invested in the transport infrastructure for the city.
Agricultural produce is exported and agricultural technology is imported, but that didn’t prevent us from stopping every ten minutes or so to let the working oxen and buffaloes cross the road from one field to another.
Part of that commercial world is the secretive jade trade worth a staggering $31Billion to Myanmar, although where that wealth ends up is any ones guess. We visited Mandalay’s jade market in the middle of the city where the locals meet