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This coming week has two public holidays in Myanmar which are both important days for the nation. So here are some tips you might want to know what’s happening on these holidays.

Waso Full Moon Day – July 16

What is Waso Full Moon Day?

In the month of July, according to the Myanmar lunar calendar, the Waso Full Moon Day marks the beginning of the Buddhist Lent. Waso offerings, especially tall candles, are in abundance at every Buddha image, and at the big event celebrated annually in Shwedagon Pagoda.

What to do?

Locals usually invite monks from the nearest monasteries to offer an early breakfast and robes. The families would pay special homage to the Buddha’s teachings through Dhamma talk from monks.

Waso Full Moon Day is known as a sacred day when Buddha was conceived. Before and during the month of Waso, it is also important for the believers to forgive and forget all the bad things they have done in order to do more good deeds in the future. People offer food, robes, medicine, and donate money to the monks and monasteries as the monks enter into a period of retreat to meditation, reflection, honouring of Budha’s teachings through practice.

Here is a list of some robe shops you can buy and donate to monks from your nearest area.

Thamada Robe Store
Thamada is one of the many places that offer some of the best quality monk robes which will last for a long time. Established in 1983, they have grown to three branches across Yangon. They sell only one particular type of robes. Buddha replicas, palin or thrones, and other monk utensils are also available at Thamada. 

Shop (1): No. 118, Yetarshe old Road, Bahan Township, Yangon. | Tel: (095-01) 545395, 545396
Shop (2): No. 23/B, Yetarshe old Road, Bahan Township, Yangon. | Tel: (095-01) 543206, 543282 
Shop (3): No.156, West Shwe Gone Daing Road, Bahan Township, Yangon. | Tel: (067) 24773

Kyar Ngar Khaing Robe Store
Kyar Ngar Khaing or Five Lotus Branches was established a long time ago and is still going strong. They, unlike many other stores, sells only robes and nothing else at pretty reasonable prices.

Shop (1) : No. 59, Upper KyiMyinDaing Road, Kyi Myin Daing Township, Yangon. | Ph : 01 524182.
Shop (2) : No. 83, Upper KyiMyinDaing Road, Kyi Myin Daing Township, Yangon. | Ph : 01 535162.

Mahar Lumbini Robe Store
Mahar Lumbini is also one of the shops which sell Preikhayar all over Myanmar. The prices are different according to the type of quality. They also offer a great variety of robes depending on your budget. 

No. 507 E, Pyae Road, Kamayut Township, Yangon. | Ph : 01 525 269.

After buying the robes, you can donate them at the nearest monastery to your house. You can donate along with alms or meals and Moreover, if you happen to see a fellow monk along the street in the morning, don’t be hesitant to donate as well.

Martyrs’ Day – July 19

Is a holiday in Myanmar which to mark the rememberence of the assassination of Myanmar’s father General Aung San; the epitome of independence, seven other leaders and a body guard at The Secretariat Building who sacrificed their lives for the country.

What’s going on today?

At approximately 10:37 a.m., if you are close enough, you can hear the sirens from the Martyrs’ Mausoleum. You can also hear the sirens from the mausoleum broadcasted through the radio and television. When people hear this siren, everybody immediately stops what they’re doing and stand still or bow to pay respect. People in Myanmar call the siren the “Oak Aw Swel Tan”, or the cuckoo sound. The sound of the siren lasts for about 90 seconds.

What’s more?

Visit the Secretariat Before Martyr’s day! 

Check here what is inside the Secretariat.

Visit The Martyrs’ Mausoleum

Six martyrs, including General Aung San, are entombed at the Mausoleum. It is a common place for high ranking officials to visit on Martyrs’ Day. The Mausoleum has been open to the public to pay respect since 2011. The opening hours for visitors will be 12 to 5 pm; from the Gate number 1 at the junction of west Shwe Gone Daing Road and Ar Zar Ni Street. They will be invited to leave from Gate number, near the Shwe Dagon Pagoda’s northern gate. Bear in mind, this is a high profile event so security will be running thick.

Visit General Aung San’s house

Now a museum, this two-story building was once General Aung San’s residence. You can feel General Aung San’s presence, learn about his history and look at the displays of their family room, dining room, bedroom, library, living room, as well as famous speeches and family pictures in this museum. This is also the house where our current State Counselor of Myanmar, daughter of General Aung San, Aung San Su Kyi once resided.

What’s open and what’s not

Many restaurants and bars are open during Martyr’s day. However, the govt. offices and banks are closed.

To find out more about Martyrs’ Day

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