When the British were in Burma the colonists wanted to escape the heat of the lowlands and escape to the relative cool of the hill station of Pyin oo Lwin also spelled Pyin U Lwin (or Maymyo as it used to be called)
The road is easy and comfortable – much of it is part of one of the direct trade routes through to China.
The town has a definite colonial feel with old British style buildings and even a botanical garden.
The botanical gardens are the Kandawgyi National Gardens. They were established in 1915 and were converted to a national institution in the 1920s and have a wide variety of plants and garden areas. Being at a much higher altitude the temperature is cooler and many plants grow here that would not survive the heat on the low lands
The town has a strong military presence as there are a number of military institutions and training colleges in the area. The town is also popular with richer Burmese to have a holiday house there.
Much of the architecture is colonial British with many homes and bungalows having well established gardens. Quaint but often rather dilapidated horse and carts drive around town offering trips to tourists and locals alike.
The easiest and most expensive is to hire a car and driver for the journey. This can be organised in advance through your travel agent or nearer the time through your hotel or guesthouse. Cost will be between $50-$70 (2012)
Shared taxis can also be arranged through your hotel or guesthouse. Cost will be between $10- $20
There is a train connection which trains leaving Mandalay very early morning 4:00 am –ish or mid-afternoon. See details on http://www.seat61.com/Burma.htm#Mandalay – Pyin Oo Lwin