Myanmar sea BeachThe Myanmar Sea Beach
On Myanmar's hidden shores, how to make real experience locally.
Larger than an eight-lane motorway and about 15 km long, this beach is a roomy choice for groups and family. Walk along the coast or discover it with a hired motorcycle or ATV (all-terrain vehicle). The wide, shallow shores are one of the few in Myanmar that have a constant stream that is not big enough for windsurfing but is ideal for a bodyboard.
There are other types of aquatic sports such as jet-skiing and wind surfing available at the Ngwe Saung Yacht Club & Resort - a nautically -styled estate with a wide range of family-friendly accommodations, from villas to marquees. Although Ngwe Saung is one of the most advanced in Myanmar, it is far from crowded.
From a well-appointed city center, restaurants such as West Point (Ngwe Saung Village) provide the best fish of the year. Myanmar's beads are known for being of the highest value, with the golds earning ten thousand auktions. Ngwe Saung offers a range of colours: rose, gilded and gray from the Andaman Sea.
From Yangon, take a six-hour coach trip or rent a personal vehicle; the trip lasts five to sixhrs. You will find locals gathering around the beach for a picnic and salesmen, some sell sea food - such as langoustine - that can be cooked locally, others offer local massage directly on the gold sands.
Play beach volley with the local people or rent a ferry to discover the island of Pokala. If you are going to do beach or aquatic sports, don't wear your daring swimsuit at home, as the local people are more conservative. The local people start a firework display as the evening draws near, which is on sale on the beach and intensifies the party-atmosphere.
Myanmar Nationalsport, chinlon (caneball; above), is performed on Chaung Tha. Inspired by Myanmar's ancient fighting and dancing, it sees a ring of musicians who let a wicker bullet (or coconut) run around with their toes only. It is a quick, charming match; a spectacle in itself. From Yangon, take a five to six hours drive by coach.
North of Myanmar, a bend of crystal-clear, aquamarine-colored powdered sandy, whitish waters, washed by the rainforest, is kissing. The holiday accommodations (above), which are distributed over the beach lined with points of snus, radiate an atmosphere of exclusiveness. Myanmar's focus on sustainability is what sets Ngapali apart from other Myanmar sands. Guesthouses have worked with a number of different tourist organisations and guesthouses, and tourists have chosen to ban motorized nautical activity, while the tourist activity they organise in cooperation with a number of regional tourist guide is limited in its environmental effects.
This includes snorkeling on cliffs about 30 min by sea from the shore and river cruising with bamboos. From Yangon take a 50-minute plane to Thandwe airport and then travel to Ngapali for about 20 mins. The secluded, untouched Mergui Archipelago with its more than 800 islets has so far escaped the streams of tourists and chains of hotel chains.
Of the few cruise operators authorized to rent to the arcipelago, Burma Boating provides all-inclusive trips on luxurious boats that take you to the 48 km long Lampi lsland (below) - the biggest within the Lampi Marine National Park. Lined by sea grass pastures hosting threatened sea turtle and dung-gong populations, the country is full of biospherain.
The clear, flat water around 115 Iceland is unbeatable for snorkeling. At the back of the isle you can go by sea in a sea cage to discover a cavern where you can find martins. Moken, a semi-nomadic people, are spread across the Mergui Islands and the western seaboard of Thailand. Charters a ship or yachts that will take you on a three to seven days diving safari; this is the only way to get to the area.
Yangon's Kaw Thaung, a two-hour trip, is the starting point for the group.