Myanmar, or Burma as is commonly referred to, is one of the most beautiful and wonderful countries in the world that is a definite go to country for any traveller. Want to visit Myanmar? If your answer is yes, then here is what you will need to know for you to have an amazing and unforgettable experience in this wonderful South East Asian country.
Visa policies in Myanmar
Getting into Myanmar, like any other foreign country, requires you to have a travel visa. However, that is not entirely true. If you are from one of theeligible visa exempt countries, well, you don’t necessarily need a Visa to Myanmar to gain access. Myanmar has eight countries on its visa exempt list. Holders ofpassports from Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Philippines, Singapore, Vietnam and Thailand (for those arriving via air only) enjoy the visa exempt status but can only stay for up to two weeks unless noted otherwise.
To obtain a travel Visa to Myanmar is quite easy. Myanmar launched its e-visa service in 2014. It isis issued online for business and tourism purposes only. It is normally issued within three working days. However, you will need to get into the country through Yangon International Airport, Naypyidaw Airport, Mandalay International Airport, Tachileik Land Border Checkpoint, Myawaddy Land Border Checkpoint or theKawthaung Land Border Checkpoint. You can also obtain a visa on arrival only if you are flying into Yangon International Airport.
Now that you know how to get into this beautiful country, next up is for you to know when to visit Myanmar, so that you get your fix of pleasure.
Best time to visit Myanmar
The best time to visit Myanmar depends mostly on what you are seeking. Myanmar is a year round destination asdifferent times of the year come with different activities that you can indulge while traversing the country. Myanmar has a tropical climate with three distinct seasons: thehot season running from March through to May, thewet season running from June through to Septemberand finally thecool season running from October through to February.You might be wondering what to expect, where and when. Well, here is your guide.
If you are travelling to Myanmar in the hot season, from the months of March to May, when temperatures hover around 35°C (95°F) and reach maximum of 38°C (100°F), it is advisable to pack light clothes. A pair of sunglasses will also do you good. Not forgetting your sunscreen. Visiting the country at this time is advisable as it has the advantage of fewer tourists therefore you can enjoy subsidized prices.
During this time, visit Kalaw and Pindaya which are set in the mountains and are thus cooler than the lowlands. Hiking during this time is the best since the ground is dry and compact. You can also visit the renowned Inle Lake during the hot season.The temperatures are not extreme as the climate is moderated by the lake. Who would not enjoy a hot afternoon at the beach? I know I would. The hot season is the time to be at Ngapali beach for a perfect beach escape.
If you are travelling to Myanmar in the wet season, from the months of June through to September, when the country is drenched, pack heavy. However, that does not mean that you are out of travel options. To avoid the rains, head to Bagan to visit the temples of Bagan. Although it’s the rainy season, Bagan only sees just brief afternoon showers and a lot of dry days.
However, the best time to visit Myanmar is during the cool season, in the months of October through to February. This is the time when the rainy days are scarce and far apart and the temperatures are fairly moderate. However, everyone knows that and therefore it is a very busy time and the prices tend to shoot through the roof compared to the off peak seasons,but still fairly cheap. During this time, you can visit any destination in the country from the capital in Yangon, Mandalay, InleLake, Bagan, down to the beach in Ngapali.
When you have chosen your best time to visit Myanmar, your bags are packed, Myanmar visa in hand, next question is, “Which are the places to go in Myanmar?” I do not think you can just visit Myanmar on a tour and get to visit all the places. However, there are some go to places and things to do in Myanmar which you must visit and do so that you can comfortably say, “I toured Myanmar.”
First up is Yangon city, the capital. You will most probably fly in through the Yangon International Airport, and start experiencing Myanmar as soon as you touch down. This is the best place to experience Myanmar’s rich heritage.The best things to do in Yangonare visit the huge pagodas surrounding the city, relax on the lake and see the famed gold-plated duck-swan while cooling off in the shade. Get your haggle on at the Bogokye markets before taking the circular train, a colonial past relic. Ever heard of a floating hotel, let alone be in one? Well, Yangon is home to a 1920s-themed Vintage Luxury Yacht sitting on the Yangon River. That you must go to and be taken back in time.
Head up north to Bagan for hot air balloon rides, E-bike ridesand visits to monk monasteries before heading out to Inle for a sense of tranquillity. Here are some of the things to do in Inle. Take a hot air balloon ride to have a bird’s eye view of the beautiful Inle region. The floating gardens on Lake inle will leave you mouth agape, they are just spectacular to say the least. Engage the locals, meet the Long necks, a dying breed before you learn how to make local cigars!
You are lucky to be travelling in Myanmar since thereare many Myanmar travel agents who have awesome Myanmar tour packages for youthat will help in getting around the country with ease. Different travel agents in Myanmar offer different packages but they are mostly similar in the places they visit. Here are some of the travel agents in Myanmar to choose from: Myanmar Voyages, Myanmar Explorer Tour Co. Ltd, Nice Asia Travels & Tours, Green Leaf Travels & Tours, Myanmar Tours Asia, One Stop Myanmar, Yangon Tours Travels & Tours Co. Ltd among many more. But should you want to combine Myanmar with other regional countries like Vietnam, Thailand, Laos and Cambodia, Indochinavalue Travel is your travel specialist.