Cities to Visit in MyanmarTowns to visit in Myanmar
The best sights in Myanmar
My first visit to Burma (aka Myanmar) took me on a one-month rucksack tour through Southeast Asia in the sommer of 2009. This was 3 years before the land opened up to the outside worlds because it was under 60 years of military (basically dictatorial) rule. So I went back in early 2012 and my third one in January 2018.
Whilst the tourist industry has arrived, the nature of Burma is still as nice as ever. I' ve put together some of Myanmar's best cities. Before 1962, Burma was one of the richest countries in Southeast Asia, abundant in natural assets such as jade, precious stones, oil, industrial minerals and oil.
It has been one of the countries with the least Human Development Index for six decade-long and is a continuous breach of the United Nations & Human rights watches. We all hope for a much better tomorrow for the Burmese nation with the recent elections this weeks and Aung San Suu Kyi's National League of Democracy led.
Myanmar's most popular site: If you ask where to go in Southeast Asia, it is hard to name a place because each has its own beauties, cultures, culinary specialities and population. There are so many towns and cities in each of the countries that you can comfortably stay there for a few days, even years.
However, I have always said that my favourite place in Southeast Asia is Myanmar. In 1989 the dominant army regime formally renamed it "Myanmar", where it still exists today, to remove the name' s disorientation, but the vast majority of people still recognise their homeland as "Burma", which is why the name is used in exchange.
Myanmar is a nation with more than 100 nationalities. This is bordered by China, India, Bangladesh, Laos and Thailand with a registered total of about 50 million inhabitants. In the beginning, the locals who have been away from the tourism traps for so many years (as opposed to a place like Thailand) are much more open, sincere and genuine in their encounter with them.
Burma, mainly Buddhist (followed by Hinduism & Islam), has an overall tranquil charisma, as far as humans go every single morning . When you travel around the countryside, 1/4 of the men you see are friars. There are mountains, beaches and lakes with Buddhist pagodas that surround the area.
Alternatively, the best way to get around is to rent a rider for a few day (at the current rate), take a coach or take internal air services between the city. As soon as you get to the destination, you can make your reservation so that if you want to spend more time in one place, you can do so.
My favourite part of Burma. 5-mile long & 7-mile broad, embedded along the Shan Mountains on Burma's central eastern side, adjacent to Thailand. A sleepy town for a 2-4 days visit to a guesthouse (I suggest Gypsy Inn). Canoeing to see fishermen in action, visit neighbouring towns.
Awaken early and visit the local people' s everyday food shopping at a very low cost at the local open-air food fair, where the word "organic, free-range hormones, no-hormones" really applies. Visiting the Long Neck Tribe ladies. Luxury hotel accommodation is a delicacy for relaxing by the pool after a long days cycling through stupas and for delicious food and drinks.
Believe it or not, this is the true Mandalay Bay, not the one you went to in Las Vegas for $120/night. This is one of Rudyard Kipling's favourite places, as he writes in his renowned poetry The Road to Mandalay. It' a big metropolis to enter and exit from, and although it's a bustling town, you won't be overtaxed like the bustling Southeast Asian town.
The longest teak footbridge in the whole country, 1300 meters long over Lake Taungthaman, is one of the most frequently visited places in Burma. This is a place to unwind in the afternoons as you observe local and monk people in their work. Beautiful Buddhist temple that you can either ascend or take the lift up.
Magnificent to visit at any hour of the morning. Shweedagon Paya, is the most popular site in Burma for tourists and people. While this old locomotive is a traditional way for people to get around, I find it the best way to see Yangon and the surrounding area for a low cost, and a way to interoperate with others.