Yangon Circular Railway

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Mainline rail interchange Yangon Circular Railway
ရန်ကုန် မြို့ပတ် ရထား
Owner Myanmar Railways
Locale Yangon
Transit type Commuter rail
Number of stations 39
Daily ridership 100,000-150,000
Headquarters Yangon
Began operation 1954
Number of vehicles 21
System length 45.9 km (28.5 mi)
No. of tracks 2
Track gauge 1,000 mm (3 ft 3 38 in)
Average speed 15.3 km/h (9.5 mph)
System map

Yangon Circular Railway (Burmese: ရန်ကုန် မြို့ပတ် ရထား [jàɴɡòʊɴ mjo̰baʔ jətʰá]) is the local commuter rail network that serves the Yangon metropolitan area. Operated by Myanmar Railways, the 45.9-kilometre (28.5 mi) 39-station loop system connects satellite towns and suburban areas to the city. Circa 2008-2010, the railway had about 200 coaches, had 20 daily runs, and sold 100,000 to 150,000 tickets daily.[1][2][3] The loop, which takes about three hours to complete, is a way to see a cross section of life in Yangon. The Railway is heavily utilized by lower-income commuters, as it is (along with buses) the cheapest method of transportation in Yangon.[4][5]

Circa 2011, the service hours were from 3:45 am to 10:15 pm daily. Circa 2011, the cost of a ticket for a distance of 15 miles was two hundred kyats (~eighteen US cents), and that for over 15 miles was four hundred kyats (~37 US cents).[6] Tickets on air-conditioned trains were slightly more expensive (100 MMK) and were sold at all stations. In Yangon central station Platform 7, they were available in a little ticket office on the platform. More recently, the cost of tickets was changed such that a distance of 15 miles or less was one hundred kyats, and over 15 miles or one entire circuit was two hundred Kyats. Air-conditioned trains were no longer available.


Yangon Circular Railway was built during colonial times by the British.[7] The double track railway was built in 1954.[8]

In July 2011, the Ministry of Rail Transportation announced that it intended to privatize the Yangon Circular Railway, since the government-run system operates at a loss for the government, with monthly operating costs about 260 million kyats (US$325,000) and monthly revenues about 42 million kyats (US$52,500).[9] Ticket prices have been kept low because of ministry subsidies.[10]

In December 2012, Japan International Cooperation Agency began its collaboration with Yangon City Development Committee to develop a master plan for the Greater Yangon region, including the issue of public transport.[11] According to the New York Times in June 2017, "Myanmar Railways plans major changes for the Circle Line by 2020, funded in part by a $212 million loan from Japan’s development agency. All of the trains are to be replaced, along with the aging tracks, and the manual, push-button signaling system is to be automated." Service would be more frequent.[12]


The loop network consists of 39 stations, linking various parts of Yangon. Map from train is shown to the right, with approximate location of stations.

The loop begins from Yangon Central Railway Station to Mingaladon Railway Station near Yangon International Airport, via Insein to the west and Okkalapa in the east.

The major stations are as follows:[13]

Circular Trip[edit]

The entire circular trip takes approximately 3 hours.

The timetable for departure at Yangon railway station is shown to the right. Note that there are several comments elsewhere on the Internet about inaccurate departure.

Notation "R" indicates eastbound at Yangon railway station, thus in anticlockwise direction, and "L" is the opposite direction.



  1. ^ "Inter-states and regions railroad tracks all heading to Nay Pyi Taw". BiWeekly Eleven. 3 (30). 2010-10-15. 
  2. ^ Yeni (2008-01-30). "The Railway Bazaar". The Irrawaddy. 
  3. ^ "Third Regional EST Forum: Presentation of Myanmar" (PDF). Singapore: Ministry of Transport, Myanmar. 17–19 March 2008. 
  4. ^ Shwe Gaung, Juliet; Nay Lin Aung (1 August 2011). "Passengers hope privatisation brings better services". Myanmar Times. Retrieved 13 September 2013. 
  5. ^ Moe Thida; Zhu Zhui; Zhou Xiaojing; Muhammad Halley Yudhistira; Jeff Volinski (March 2012). "Yangon Circular Railway Development Project" (PDF). raSPP Policy Research Paper E 1-2-001. University of Tokyo. Retrieved 13 September 2013. 
  6. ^ "13 Coaches from Japan Arrived for Yangon Circular Railway". BiWeekly Eleven (in Burmese). 2011-01-04. 
  7. ^ Codrington, Stephen (2005). Planet Geography. Solid Star Press. p. 568. ISBN 9780957981935. 
  8. ^ Etherton, David; Terry Standley (May 1990). Human Settlements Sector Review: Union of Myanmar. United nations Centre for Human Settlements. p. 71. ISBN 9789211311280. 
  9. ^ Win Ko Ko Latt; Su Hlaing Tun (1 August 2011). "Rail privatisation drive continues". Myanmar Times. Retrieved 13 September 2013. 
  10. ^ "Yangon’s rail network to be privatised". Myanmar Times. 25 July 2011. Retrieved 13 September 2013. 
  11. ^ Mudditt, Jessica (25 March 2013). "Waiting for the train: upgrading the Yangon circle line". Myanmar Times. Retrieved 13 September 2013. 
  12. ^ Dean, Adam (13 June 2017). "A Slow Ride Through (and Around) Yangon". New York Times. Retrieved 14 June 2017. 
  13. ^ "Yangon Circular Railways Schedule". Minami Tours. Retrieved 2009-01-18.