9 Best Places to Visit in Myanmar
01 Nov 2018
Located in the SouthEast Asia, Myanmar, since its open to the world, has become a hotbed of tourism with flocks of visitors streaming into this land of religion every year. However, not only golden wonders but other extraordinaries in Myanmar worth your admiration. Below are top ten tourist attractions you must - see when embarking on a Burma journey.
Yangon is both Myanmar’s largest city and its commercial and artistic centre, which most reflects the Burmese’s open attitude to the world. It is home to a variety of pagodas, admirable architectures and local street foods. A not - to - be - missed attractions here is Shwedagon Pagoda - the most famous golden Buddhist monument in Myanmar.
You can also pay a visit to Chaukhtatgyi pagoda where is home to an enormous reclinning Buddha image or the magnificent Sule pagoda. Moreover, downtown Yangon is a best place to take a walk as you can admire hundreds of impressive buildings in colonial architecture.
If you want to have a taste of local life, opt for Bogyoke Aung San Market - a hub of local souvenirs or hop on a Yangon circular train. To see how lively the nightlife in Yangon is, go to 19th street in China town, enjoy delicious barbecue skewers and cool beer. Join in a tour with Group Tour Myanmar and you will get the real taste of Yangon which is filled with interesting activities and unforgettable memories.
» You may like: Yangon Daily Group Tours
600km away from Yangon and located on the eastern bank of Irrawaddy River, Bagan is the first Myanmar Empire’s capital, thus one of the richest archaeological places in Southeast Asia.
The most unique feature of Bagan, which makes it stand out is a massive number of more than 2000 red brick Buddhist constructions with beautiful mural paintings and stone scripts.
Should you want a tour around city, you have different choices, either by the most common way taxi or take a horse-pulled cart, a bicycle. For those, who love to have a once in a lifetime experience, don’t miss out on the hot-balloon ride, the most iconic offer of this destination.
» You may like: Bagan Daily Group Tours
Located on the eastern bank of Irrawaddy River, Mandalay is the second largest city in Myanmar, once the realm of the last monarchy and independent kingdom of Burma and now the economic and religious hub of upper Myanmar.
The city is named after Mandalay Hill, currently one of the most popular tourist attractions in the city. Besides this natural spectacle, Mandalay is also famous for some magnificent Buddhist buildings such as Mahamuni pagoda, Shwenandaw monastery and Kuthodaw padoga and the world's largest book. Furthermore, you can have a chance to experience Burmese traditional handicraft making procedures like gold leaf beating, silk weaving, woodcarving and so on.
The surrounding areas of Mandalay - Mingun, Ava, Amarapura and Sagaing are also well worth a visit with many stunning attractions and cultural heritages.
» You may like: Mandalay Daily Group Tours
4. Inle Lake
Inle Lake is one of the most beautiful places in Myanmar which is renowned for its floating villages and gardens. Visiting Inle Lake, tourists could experience a living aquaria community of the local Intha people, whose living is entirely dependent on water. They live in the stilt houses and cultivate in the floating gardens.
Thus, the main transportation in this special area is boat which will help you to have a closer look into the local life. Besides, you can also ride a bike to the peaceful villages around the lake and watch sunset at the Red Mountain Estate Vineyards & Winery.
Additionally, handicrafts also the main livelihood of local residents here. You should pay a visit to some local workshops of lotus silk weaving, Burmese cigar making and silver smith Besides, if you long for delicious fresh food, there are various restaurants on the lakes, surrounding plenty of pagodas and monasteries for your visits.
» You may like: Inle Lake Daily Group Tours
5. Kyaikhytiyo Pagoda
Ranked among the top sacred Buddha monuments in Myanmar, Kyaikhytiyo, or the other name Golden Rock Pagoda sits balancing on top of a big granite boulder.
Built more than 2500 years ago, this pagoda’s establishment is based on a legendary Hair relic that Buddhist gave to a hermit. Legend also has it that the hermit then treasured the sacred Hair in his hair know until he found a boulder resembling his own head, on which the Kyaikhtiyo Pagoda is built to enshrine it.
The rock owns its most breathtaking scenery at sunset when it's lit up by the setting sun and electric lights gathering a huge crowd of pilgrims and monks.
6. Hpa An
270 kilometers to the east of Yangon, Hpa An is a laid-back beautiful town, famous for surrounding caves and mountains.
One of the highlights in Hpa An is Mount Zwegabin, which attracts those tourists thirsty for pure explorations. If you are considering this option, make sure to prepare yourself for the best physical condition, because climbing up requires hard work, particularly under heating sun. It takes from 2 to 4 hours to climb up to the summit and get back.
However, after all efforts, you would feel fulfilled at the sense of accomplishment, marveling at extraordinary scenery from the top. Especially, a hike to Mt. Zwegabin can perfectly combine with a visit to Lumbini Garden where is home to more than 1000 Buddha images scattered in a large field. The entrance fee for both attractions is 4000 kyat (about 2.5 USD).
Spectacular view from the top of mt Zwegabin
There is also another attraction to opt for, the stunning Sadan Cave, 22 kilometers to the south east of Hpa An, which enables you to explore various Buddhas and Pagodas in a titanic cavern.
Located at the west of Shan State is Kalaw, an popular old hill station. Isolated from touristic atmosphere, Kalaw, with its invigorating climate, tranquil and picturesque scenery, is not as much a group tourist attraction as a backpacker trekking destination.
Together with Inle Lake, one of Kalaw’s most well-known trekking site, other villages also offer you a marvellously refreshing way to absorb virgin atmosphere of this pristine region.
Centered at Kalaw is its market, where villagers from the surrounding hills come to sell their own produce; next to it is Aung Chang Tha stupa, glistening with silver and gold mosaics.
8. Ngapali Beach
45 minutes away from Yangon by flight, Ngapali is definitely a perfect vacation retreat, which cultivates tourists with its pure beauty of white sand, crystal blue water and tranquil palm trees. If you look for a peaceful escape to turn on relaxation mood, Ngapali is an ideal choice. You can rent a bike to explore its serene community or go on a boat tour to visit the local island and fishing villages in the morning, and make sure to come back in time for the majestic sunset.
Even in its peak season from November to March, Ngapali still maintains a laid-back vibe. May to October is the rainy season when most hotels closing for renovation and activities are quite limited.
9. Mergui Archipelago
Off the coast of southern Myanmar sits Mergui Archipelago, comprising more than 800 islands in various sizes. Hardly can any other place on Earth rival this beach for its untouched wilderness and virgin scenery.
At Mergui Archipelago, tourists may opt for different choices to explore spectacular marine life and pure coral reefs as it is considered one of best diving spots in Asia with rays and sharks, as well as the diversity of coral reefs which sit off many of the white powdery sand beaches. However, there are not many options of transportations, because of poor infrastructure. Boat, in particular charter yacht, is the most accessible means.
» Read more Myanmar travel guides to perfect your trip.