Getting to Ngapali BeachArrival to Ngapali Beach
Getting to Ngapali Beach without a flight - backpackckerlee
So painful to be planning a journey to Ngapali Beach on the western shore of Myanmar. But despite the difficulties it is actually quite easy to schedule your vacation at Ngapali Beach from Yangon or Bagan. Bagan's Nyaung-U Airport to Thandwe Airport (the nearest city to Ngapali Beach itself) lasts only 2 hrs, although the security records of some carriers on this stretch leave a great deal to be desired. 2hrs.
Dependable busses run directly from Yangon to Thandwe, but the trip lasts more than 11hrs. It would be better to take a V.I.P. coach to Bagan, spend some quality free travel around the archeological area and then think about taking another coach to Ngapali to interrupt the trip.
We do not recommend visiting Ngapali Beach from Mandalay or Inle Lake or any other location in Myanmar other than Bagan or Yangon as the tourism facilities are inadequate. Coming from Bagan, first take the coach to Pyay and then to Thandwe.
The Bagan Min Thar Express, Academy and Shwe Lamin are favourite coach operators on this itinerary. $23-26 is a general estimation of the per capita costs for this trip, although it's not usually the kind of luxury coach that travels between other tourist areas in Myanmar, and the trip can take up to 24 hours!
Thandwe is a very rustic city about 6 km from the coast. You can take a taxi from the beach to the beach very cheap. Thandwe is a great example of Burma WITHOUT Burma's tourist industry, which has now invaded major towns like Heho, Bagan and Mandalay.
Thandwe is the best place for a one or two days immersion in the area! Ngapali Beach was once classified as one of the top 5 in Southeast Asia, and since then nothing has stopped me from changing my opinion. It could even be number 1 if you wanted to know what the most underestimated beach in the area is!
This is a real tropic heaven, and because of its position in the west of Myanmar, it is almost unaffected by massive tourist flows. Whereever you come from, when you arrive at Ngapali Beach, you must find shelter. More and more seaview properties (including a Hilton) have appeared in recent years, and night prices are quite high in comparison to other Asian tourist locations (I think this is common in Myanmar in general).
Returning to Bagan can be a little tiring after having spent a little while near the Ngapali Beach wave, but it has to be done (unless you want to confiscate a ship and cruise across the ocean to Bangladesh!). Since Bagan does not have an internatinal airfield, you should take the coach back to Yangon, especially if you intend to take off from Myanmar after your escapsades at the water.