Trip in MyanmarTravel in Myanmar
Planning a journey to Myanmar
Myanmar has only recently opened up to the outside worlds, so it can still be a challenge for travelers who want to travel the state. In this brief guideline you will find a brief description of how best to organise your journey. Yangon can have heavy rains during the rainy period, but it won't stop you from visiting the sights when you're ready, and places like Bagan and Lake Inle can have brief downpours blended with the sun.
Rafting and boating are also affected by the wet seasons; the Irrawaddy is best seen right after the wet seasons, as the scenery will be rich and abundant in water. The next step is to find out why you are going to Myanmar. Consider the dimensions of the land, as you may also need to plan domestic or interesting riverside trips to get to all places.
If you are a first-time user, we suggest the world-famous Bagan. The last high point is the nice U Bein pedestrian bridge in Mandalay. Visiting mountain people in the Loikaw area near Thailand or exploring the Mergui archipel - a range of sandy beaches and small towns encircled by hot blue water.
The trip to Myanmar is relatively easy. Myanmar is isolated and therefore reliant on a domestic flight system. The fastest way to move inside is to fly, and the trips are usually very brief and the scenery is picturesque. It is a richer cultural way to go from staying between Yangon and Mandalay to picturesque, more leisurely trips on historical UK settlement trails such as the Goteik Bridge or the roundtrip around Yangon.
A further excellent possibility to find your way around Myanmar is the ferry. The Irrawaddy offers long and shorter cruises with different luxurious levels. The Mergui Archipelago can also be explored by bareboat or live-aboard and enjoyed in the blue-water. Rickshaws, tricycle tuk-tuks and classic car cabs are available in big city and city areas - but beware of the driver's tourists' tariff.
The most important towns of Yangon and Mandalay have bus services, although they can be crowded and sluggish. Transnational journeys are simpler than ever, and you can mix Myanmar with Thailand in one journey, perhaps across the Thai -North Thai frontier or across Myanmar's south frontier to Ranong, near the Andaman Sea.
You can find some nice boutiques and special places to spend the night in Myanmar. Yangon Governor's residence is a 1920' villa. The Bagan Lodge is a great place to settle down when you visit the nearest temple. It can be very useful to have a souvenir tour leader for some parts of your journey.
When you fly to Yangon, Mandalay or Naypidaw, you can use the e-visa services; please check www.evisa.moip.gov. mm before your journey to get one. Myanmar's denomination is Kyat (pronounced "chat"). The US dollar, however, is widely used as an alternate exchange rate and we suggest that you take some of it with you, especially for large shopping.
Exchanging US dollars and euros for Kyoto at large airfields and banking locations in large towns. In Yangon and Mandalay you will probably get the best price, but your tour leader will be able to help and advice you. It is not available in Myanmar and it is useful to keep a stock of 1000k yat banknotes for tips and small shopping.
Some ATMs in the major towns now offer Visa/Mastercard/Maestro/Cirrus cashpoints. The possibilities for payment are still restricted, but like so much in the UK, the picture is rapidly shifting; tickets are acceptable in high-class Yangon dining and hotel establishments and in some of the country's most loved places (with a supplement of about 3%).
Varnish may have its origin in China, but there is an old custom in Myanmar, especially in Bagan. Are you interested in a journey to Myanmar (Burma), please contact us on 020 3603 2578 or ask for a callback. For some examples of routes, take a look at our Myanmar based route planner.