Myanmar where to goBurma, where to go
Burma top sights & travel guide
You can find Myanmar Youth hostels at Hostelworld or at Booking.com. Sept. 2017 Note: There are currently press coverage of systematic violent and ethnical purges against Muslim Rohingya minority groups in Myanmar. Although the affected area of Rakhine State is not on the normal tourism path - and there are certainly good reasons to visit Myanmar (support for the regional economy, etc.) - I still mention these incidents as they could influence your view.
Burma (formerly known as Burma) is the youngest member of the South East Asian rucksack tour. After the reform of the governments and the removal of administrative penalties in 2012, it has become a favourite among travelers looking for something different or simply looking for an exit from the bustling touristic attractions and insane parties in neighboring Thailand.
Although it may not always remain so, Myanmar still remains authentically and largely untouched by the tourist masses. Bagan is Myanmar's main tourist destination, and while they are amazing, I found the daily experience in Myanmar most catchy. Hire a rollercoaster and wind through the scenery, or take a ride on a railroad and savour the rush of a creaky old locomotive winding through the scenery.
You will get the most out of Myanmar when you can build your own little adventure. It should be mentioned that I was in Myanmar in mid-2013, which has been a while now. When I was here, the first ATM machines were just hooked up to the world' s bank system and travelers were advised to take plenty of money with them (no longer needed).
Travelling in Myanmar may be somewhat constricted in some ways, as visits to certain areas (especially in the far northern and eastern parts of the country) are subject to legal restrictions. A lot of travelers adhere to the so-called "tourist triangle" of Yangon, Bagan and Inle Lake, but many other places are also attainable.
Below is a list of some of the best sights and attractions in Myanmar. Undoubtedly the biggest tourist draw in the northern part is the Bagan Tempelkomplex, an archaeological site with over 2200 antique Buddha shrines and cloisters. Particularly at sundown, Bagan provides breathtaking vistas and is often (and rightly) referred to in the same vein as Angkor Wat in Cambodia or Borobodur in Indonesia.
Myanmar has some good walks and daily walks, especially around the touristic attraction Lake Inle or the tranquil city of Hsipaw. Yangon, the trade capitol, is located in the southern part of the country and is home to many fairs, gold palaces and small alleys. At Kyaikto, just to the east of Yangon, you can see a famous place of Buddhism with a large gold rock on the brink of a rocky promontory - a view that will be convenient when you travel to Myanmar from Thailand via the most used Myawaddy boarder cross.
When you want to leave the city, you can go to the coastline, where Chaungtha and Ngapali are two small, hardly developped beaches. Mrauk-U, on the extreme western coastline, is a similar to Bagan although it lasts a long way and is much less frequented (which may of course be the ideal place for this).
Whilst alternate routes are possible, many travelers spend much of their travel in Yangon, Bagan and Mandalay, and add various trips to other areas. Yangon is home to the Shwedagon Pagoda, a vast gold-clad buddhistic cemetery. Aside from the coupons, some folks may think that Yangon is not particularly full of important monuments or museum sites, but I think there is a lot to do.
It is interesting that motorcycles are forbidden in Yangon. I' m not sure if this act was created exactly like this, although it has led to the roads of Yangon having a relatively calm and comfortable temper. It is the second biggest town in the area and a good starting point for day trips to various places of interest in the area.
Take a cab or hire a motorbike and head to U Bien Brigde, Myanmar's most famous 2.5km long tree-timber deck over a sea, which is also the title page of many Myanmar travel guides. The Mandalay Hill is another favourite attraction from where you can see the whole town.
Mandalay is not quite as accessible and quiet as Yangon with many motorcycles and many electricity generating sets installed outside the building (as a backup for use in the event of a blackout). Bagan is a very special place with over 200 sanctuaries spread across the area. Overall, the Bagan sanctuaries are particularly striking, although it may be useful to say that they are quite similar when viewed up close, and many of the sanctuaries are basically empty.
Nyaung Shwe is the most important traffic junction in this area from which you can make outings. Inthein, a kind of small-scale Bagan, is a rewarding journey. Trains in Myanmar are an adventure! When you enjoy traveling, I suggest you take a local rail at least once in Myanmar.
A further suggested trip is between Mandalay and Hsipaw. First you can take a mini van or a cab to the city of Pyin Oo Lwin and then get on the early hours of the day to reach the best part of the track.
It traverses a gorge over the Goteik Bridge, which was constructed during the colonisation of Britain. Or it could just be about the bodily sensation of being on a great old move. During my journey, the platoon turned in some places into a huge pruning shear that cut through the jungles and sprayed leafs and twigs into the car through the open sashes.
The Hsipaw is a good starting point for walks in the area just south of Mandalay. As it is at a higher height, it is comfortably colder here than in Bagan or Mandalay. Backpacker may complain about the shortage of good youth accommodations in Myanmar, especially those used to the abundance of youth accommodations in other parts of Asia.
Situations are now slowly shifting and there are a few backpackers mainly in Yangon and Bagan. Here are some recommended guesthouses (the link leads to Hostelworld): Yangon HostelYangonModern Youth hostel with custom-built berths (with en-suite stowage and light for reading). Ustello Bello BaganBaganCozy Guided tour in Bagan, the city next to the renowned Bagan temple.
Mainland InnYangonThis quickly turned into a vibrant back packer hotspot, probably to its owner's astonishment. It is the original'traveller basecamp' in Yangon; it is a hostellike city. MyanmarYangon BackpackerNewly constructed capsules lodging in the centre of the city. YouYoe Yoe Lay HomestayMandalayCurrently the only backpacker-style lodging in Mandalay.
When it comes to accommodation, not all Myanmar has the same charm, as many of them used to be state-owned or were mainly aimed at corporate people. Myanmar trip information changes often and many web related information is either out of date or inexact. Areas of Myanmar are off the map for tourists.
When you are on a South-East Asian region tour or trying to connect another county with Myanmar, you should review this section thoroughly as there are various restrictions on long-haul trips. Getting an eVisa and flying in is the simplest way to get to Myanmar. The low-cost airline AirAsia operates flights from Bangkok and Kuala Lumpur to Yangon or Mandalay.
It is not possible to land from China, Bangladesh, India or Laos to Myanmar. It is the simplest way from Bangkok to Yangon and by far the most visited passage due to the closeness to various sights in Myanmar. They can enter Myanmar here from the Thai Chiang Rai but they will get bogged down if they do not have permission to continue their journey over land, which is seldom granted.
By and large, this voyage is not suitable for travelers who intend to cross the country to Myanmar without restrictions. You will cross Myanmar from the extreme southernmost point of the country. It is reported that the streets here are rugged, and cross-country trips to Myeik are not always possible in poor weathers. There is a new boarder between Mae Hong Song in Thailand and the kayak region of Myanmar.
It would then make it convenient to cross land from the Chiang Mai region of Thailand to Haiti, and would eventually make it possible to link Thailand and Myanmar in an interurban district. Touristic visa is unique and allows you to remain in Myanmar for 28 nights.
They always need a visas before you come to Myanmar. Apply for a touristic visas at an Myanmar consulate. It will cost about 25 / 25 $ and will require some paper work and a visit to an Embassy. If there is one in your home state, you can go to an Myanmar mission, or to Bangkok, Thailand, if you are on a local outreach.
You can only use your e-visa in Yangon, Mandalay or Nay Pyi Taw. You will need a normal entry permit to enter the country. Overlook old tips for bringing a large heap of US dollar in currency to Myanmar. Currently there are over 600 ATM' s in Myanmar that accept international direct debits or payment via bankcard.
These are often found in airfields, hotels, large stores (e.g. Bogyoke Market in Yangon) and banking outlets. More than 1000 traders now accepted Visa and Mastercard and concentrate mainly on Yangon and the Mandalay, Bagan and Inle Lake area. Making withdrawals is simple, especially in touristic locations.
A number of older guides will give you hints and hints on how you can prevent your tourism funds from going to the (then) army governmen. Whereas the current administration is only partly still democratically and not without great controversy (especially with regard to the handling of minorities), the concern about the support of a country's army regimes with tourists' funds mostly stems from the period before 2011.
Take out traveller policy and you are insured for health costs, burglary, private responsibility, cancellations and much more. You can find information about travelling costs in Myanmar and other regional destinations in my Southeast Asia Costs Summary. Low seasons are Apr-Sep; I was on the road during this period and although it was not too hard to find a place to stay, the weather can be very warm, especially in the middle plateaus (Mandalay, Bagan).