The isolation of Myanmar until recent years means that there is a relatively new travel destination to discover. Myanmar travel packages have become increasingly popular in recent years and those who have experienced the land and its people come back with great memories. If you are considering a Myanmar holiday after travelling elsewhere in South East Asia, perhaps on an Indochina tour package then you will see similarities with neighbouring countries, but also some differences.
Myanmar has a rich history and of course it spent many years under the control of the British which in itself led to an influx of Indians. India and China have influenced this Land over the years and today’s visitors will see that and much more:
• Yangon is no longer the capital as the regime decided to select a new location more central in the Country. However, it is the likely starting point of Myanmar travel and the highlight is the Shwedagon Pagoda is the largest and oldest golden monument in the world. It has a prominent position looking down on Yangon as it has for around 2,500 years.
• Bagan is arguably the real origin of what is now Myanmar. It has a huge number of temples and certainly the most popular with tourists is Ananda, built at the end of the 11th Century. It was damaged in an earthquake just over 50 years ago, but its popularity remains.
• Taung Kalat is an ancient monastery on an extinct volcano. It looks down on Bagan if you have the energy to climb all the 777 steps.
• Mandalay has become famous in poem and song and rightly so. It is a former capital with many riches to see for those interested in culture. There is much to see including the Shwenandaw Monastery and Maha Myat Muni Paya. The Ayeyarwaddy River flowing between Bagan and Mandalay offers cruisers jungles, gorges and the freshwater dolphin.
• The natural environment and small ethnic tribes deserve so attention during a Myanmar holiday. Trekkers will delight walking among the hills and mountains of the Country.
• Inle Lake in Shan State is a great destination as well as a source of food for the local villagers who live in houses on stilts. Sailing its waters in a long boat is just one of the pleasures of the Lake. There are few better places to observe daily life where farming and fishing take place.
• Pindaya Caves are also in Shan State and contain 1,000s of Buddhas made from a variety of materials including teak, stone and marble.
• The Golden Rock Pagoda is a major pilgrimage location. It seems impossible that the boulder and temple will not fall but they haven’t yet. The Pagoda is about 5 hours from Yangon and it involves some walking to really appreciate it.
Travelling in Myanmar is a rich experience. It will provide many memories to go with the photographs. Whether you have just a few days or come on a two-week Myanmar family holiday a treat awaits.