“The world is curious about Myanmar.” – U Htay Aung
Myanmar (Burma) opened to foreign tourists quite recently. It’s infrastructure still needs a lot of improvement. We advise you to travel there with a guided group as we did recently. You will have an enjoyable and comfortable trip.
Each hotel that we stayed in was luxurious, to say the least. The food was outstanding.
Bagan, the ancient archeological site with over 2,000 Buddhist temples, will take your breath away. One of our highlights of sightseeing in Bagan was watching the sunset from the top of the thousand-year-old temple. As the sun was setting and the sky was turning orange, we saw many spiky rooftops of small and large temples rising in the distance.
The more we looked, the more these temples reminded us of the mushrooms in the forest. Note: unfortunately, It is not permitted to climb the Bagan temples as of January 2018. But you can watch a sunset from some other high spots.
On a large picturesque lake (Taung Tha Man) near Mandalay, you can watch another romantic sunset. Hire a small boat and while sipping a glass of champagne, enjoy the stunning view of the sun setting down behind the U Bein Bridge, the oldest teakwood bridge in the world (built in 1850).
An extraordinary and unusual occurrence to observe is the procession of monks returning to the monastery after collecting their alms from the locals. You will see old and very young monks; some of them are boys not older than ten.
This event attracts a lot of tourists. You can give monks some money, but remember that they are not allowed to use their hands to take the donations. You have to put money on the top of the bowl that each monk carries in his hands.
In Yangoon, the former capital of Burma you can walk through the massive complex of Buddhist temples with pointy roofs covered in gold.
Everywhere you go, you will see the effigies of Buddha. In one of the temples, you can watch the worshippers sticking the thinnest layers of paper gold on Buddha. If you look at the collection of pictures of Buddha displayed outside, you will see how over the years, the statue grew bigger and bigger from the layers of these golden leaves.
The scenic Inle Lake is a great place to combine sightseeing with relaxation. Take a boat tour and look out for a lonely fisherman catching the fish while standing on one foot and manipulating the conical net with another foot.
If you are lucky, you will catch the famous “five-day” market. This market changes its’ lakefront location daily. Your guide will know where you should be taken to see the local people from the mountain villages selling their wares. They come down to the lake to sell their fish, produce and handmade souvenirs.
Where to sleep in Myanmar
(select accommodation from the best hotel booking sites)
- HotelsCombined.com (Compare all the top travel sites in one simple search)
- Trivago.com (Find your ideal hotel and compare prices from different websites)
- Booking.com (Over 2,119,000 hotels online. Hostels. Apartments. Motels)
- Priceline.com (Find a lower price, you’ll get a refund 100% of the difference)
- Hotels.com (Book now, pay when you stay)
- Travelocity.com (The price match guarantee. Free changes & cancellations)
- Expedia.com (Sign up for member prices and you could save 10% or more)
- Agoda.com (Guaranteed lowest price on hotels, resorts,
hostels, homes & more)
- HostelWorld.com (Stay in a hostel and meet the real world, not the tourist brochure)
What to eat in Myanmar
Book your flight to Myanmar
Best time to visit
The best time to visit Myanmar is from November to February.
Only recently they started to create the tourist infrastructure in Myanmar. Therefore, don’t expect many things to be perfect. Enjoy this third world colorful country before it becomes too commercial.