Top Myanmar Travelling Tips – Myanmar Yangon Tourist Attractions
Myanmar or Burma? Why Did it Change Its Name?
The country formally referred to as Burma gained independence in 1948 from occupying forces, yet it wasn’t until 1989 that the ruling military junta changed the country’s name from Burma to Myanmar following a military coup.
Politically, the name Burma was seen as a relic of the country’s former British colonial past, as well as Myanmar as a lot more inclusive of the many ethnic groups in the nation. Other names were additionally changed, which is why you will see Rangoon now referred to as Yangon.
For tourism, Burma travel is Myanmar travel. Same same, as they say in Southeast Asia.
Both the names Burma and also Myanmar are still made use of interchangeably, on the ground as well as on the world stage. This article breaks down the modifications, what you ‘should’ say as well as the inquiry: does it even matter?
Ideal Times to Go To Myanmar
There are generally 3 seasons in which you can visit Myanmar:
October to March: Dry, winter
March to May: Hot, summer season
May to October: Wet, rainy period
The popular, high period is November to February when the climate is warm yet not stifling, and attracts the greatest number of visitors. This, subsequently, makes the restricted holiday accommodation alternatives challenging to secure and will certainly indicate trying to book ahead or deal with paying for the much more pricey options left over.
March to May is the time when the temperature rises in Myanmar and impending rainfalls are due. There is a minimal number of tourists that makes it very easy to book accommodation however it is extremely hot.
An e-Visa is readily available to tourists from these 100 countries.
To obtain one, go to the main e-Visa internet site. You’ll be required to submit a passport photo and pay a cost of $50.
It takes under 10 mins to apply and you should get authorization within 3 working days.
Print out your e-Visa letter, show it when you get here and you’re in.
Your e-Visa letter is valid for 90- days from the date of issue and also permits you a 28 day stay in Myanmar
Getting a visa from your local consular office might be cheaper– if you intend to save some cash, obtaining a visa by means of your local Myanmar consular office may be more affordable. For instance, the cost is just , 14 in the UK however $40 in the USA, so do your research and do not fail to remember to consider mailing expenses.
It is only possible to go into Myanmar on an e-visa at Yangon, Mandalay as well as Nay Pyi Taw international airports; and at 3 Thai-Myanmar land boundary crossings Tachileik, Myawadi (Myawaddy) as well as Kawthoung (Kawthaung). Check the immigration website for the latest at the time you take a trip.
Getting to Myanmar
Flights to Myanmar are the typical option for tourists as the initial mode of access, with normal scheduled services from Bangkok. But, thinking about where Myanmar is located– bordered by China to the North as well as northeast, Thailand and also Laos to the east as well as India and also Bangladesh to its west– there are numerous for land entrance, although not all of them are suggested due to security.
No matter, you must define a “Port of Entry” in your online application which denotes how you will certainly be reaching Myanmar. You will certainly be provided a listing of options, from which you will need to choose among the following:
Myanmar Designated International Airports:
- Mandalay (located right in the middle of Myanmar)
- Yangon (situated in the south)
- Nay Pyi Taw (located in between Mandalay as well as Yangon)
Crossing at Land Boundary Checkpoints:
- Tachileik (in the Shan State of eastern Myanmar on the border to north Thailand)
- Myawaddy (in the Kayin State of southeastern Myanmar on the border to western Thailand)
- Kawthaung (in the most southern part of Myanmar, in the Tanintharyi Region on the border of the Thai Peninsula and also the cluster of islands)
- Tamu (in the Sagaing Region of northwestern Myanmar on the boundary to northeastern India).
- Rih Khaw Dar (a six-hour drive from the boundary town of Khawmawi in the northwestern Chin State of Myanmar on the border of Southeastern India).
In truth, you can enter Myanmar at any designated “Port of Entry” however it is best to adhere to the one you originally mentioned if possible to avoid any type of hold up in the handling of your visa upon arrival.
You can leave at any of the International Airports and also Land Border Checkpoints given that your exit point does not need to be mentioned up front. Additionally, you may exit at the Htikee Land Boundary Checkpoint, although access from here is not possible.
Flying in and also out of Yangon is cheaper and also has a lot more connections than Mandalay.
Getting around Myanmar– Cross Country
Myanmar’s local transportation options may be irritating yet the long distance propositions are much more appealing.
Distances are far, road travel is slow and flying is inexpensive so it may be your better choice.
You can still reserve flights the old-school way by wandering right into a travel agent.
Flying within Myanmar is a little bit like flying in the older days– check-in involves ticking individuals off a list of printed names, luggage claim can mean leaving the airport as well as getting your bag off a cart by the airplane and also flight announcements are made by an individual holding up a sign and calling your flight (in incomprehensible English). It really is an experience. And also a lot of fun if you do not let it get you stressed.Buses are cost effective with competing companies and a range of luxury levels.
Many buses travel overnight which is great for not losing a day of sightseeing and tour, yet isn’t so excellent for sleep. Likewise, you’ll often tend to arrive at weird times in the morning and also will not have the ability to check into your hostel or hotel until 2 p.m. That’s a great deal of hours waiting on a ‘top-up’ snooze. Think about if it will be less costly to fly if you’re going to book accommodation the very same evening to sleep straight away.
Buses are extremely chilly, the luxury buses will certainly offer you a covering yet, wear your warm layers.
Even the VIP bus does not have a toilet onboard so anticipate to stop every few hours for a food as well as toilet break– a little bit irritating if you’re attempting to sleep through the night.
Night buses are not sleeper buses, although these are the buses which bring you to your destination around 3 or 4am. What’s even more, some still play their funky local song CD’s as well as tacky music videos till the very early hours of the morning. Pack your iPod, invest in some sturdy extreme ear plugs or kindly request the sound to be turned off.
Never ask a vehicle driver about fate, crime levels are remarkably reduced.
Still, you should take the common safety measures of using hotel storage lockers or safes for your valuables. Female travellers should not experience any kind of harassment or different treatment.
Do take hand sanitiser– the cash is dirty and there isn’t always soap in washrooms so utilize your sanitiser before you touch anything that will go near your mouth.
Watch out for the dust- Myanmar can be extremely dusty so do carry something to cover your mouth as well as nose when cycling around. Likewise take care with your a/c– Myanmar can be as hot. Consequently, numerous visitors use the a/c in their room but sleeping in low temperatures can make you ill.
Fruit is very easy to come by so top up your body immune system with nutrients in this way. However, as it’s typically pre-cut, look for a vendor that has kept the flies away and if it’s sluiced with water, ensure it’s filtered water.
Safety and security
Many government advisories warn against travel to parts of Rakhine (Rakhaing) State in western Myanmar, where clashes between local authorities and the minority Muslim (Rohingya) communities has actually resulted in the mass displacement of thousands of people. A few other parts of the country stay closed to foreigners as a result of dispute in between the government as well as different ethnic militaries gathered in eastern and northern Myanmar. These areas are mostly in Kachin as well as Shan States, near the frontiers with China and Thailand, as well as far from the significant traveler locations.
Precise info on disputes and closed areas can be tough to come by. Check your government’s recommendations before taking a trip, as well as inquire about the situation once you are in Myanmar. Lonely Planet’s Thorn Tree travel forum is an excellent source of information from visitors on the ground.
What to wear in Myanmar
The majority of the locals dress conservatively| as well as cover their shoulders and also legs despite the heat, and you will make everyone more comfortable if you follow suit.
Knee length shorts, long skirts, elephant pants and also tee shirts are the attire of choice. These are highly encouraged and often enforced for entering the temples and pagodas.
Everybody wears skirts– men and women alike– the longyi, a long skirt, is the popular traditional dress in Myanmar for both males and females. Lots of vacationers pick one up as they’re breezy in the heat and also tick the ‘conservative wear’ box. They are practical for sightseeing and tour so get a cheap one a the market if you have the opportunity.
Flip flops are necessary! Entering pagodas implies going barefoot and also flip flops are the very best footwear selection. Struggling with shoelaces in the scorching heat is an undesirable interruption. Bring some cleaning wipes for your feet after going to a pagoda.
Myanmar is a conservative nation so you’ll blend much better if you clothe conservatively (covering your knees as well as shoulders). You will find people in shorts and also strappy tops in the cities and at the beach yet somewhere else it’s much less usual.
The local individuals are extremely genteel and not used to confrontation so pack your best manners and your patience. Travelling can be frustrating, hot and slow however keep in mind: you chose to visit Myanmar and that it’s not the same as being at home is no good reason to take it out on the citizens. However, haggle hard with the taxi drivers.
You may get stopped a whole lot by locals who want to talk. Travelers are no longer a novelty in most of Southeast Asia however Myanmar is different. Normally the people are wonderful and also are happy to appear in photographs and also attempt and speak via limited usual words or sign language.
You mayalso get stared at a whole lot which is usually best handled by providing a smile and also a mingalabar (hi in Burmese). Burmese English can be difficult to comprehend, be patient, pay attention and also if you’re paying for a guide, make sure they have excellent clear English before you book.
The red stained pavements are a consequence of spitting red coloured saliva after chewing betel quids, small parcels which contain tobacco, spices and also areca nuts wrapped in a betel leaf. It’s most likely popular| since it delivers a hit that’s equivalent to 6 cups of coffee. However, as well as being dangerous when chewed long term, the by-product is bright-red saliva which is spat out, most times onto the ground.
Great deals of locals have the tell tale red discolored teeth and taxi drivers often roll down the window in slow-moving traffic to spit after chewing on the betel quids.
There is some begging by kids in Myanmar and as heartbreaking as it is, you shouldn’t give to the youngsters. Why not? Read this great short article by Uncornered Market.
It’s common to see yellow circles pasted on the faces of the Burmese ladies. This is Thanaka, a cosmetic paste made from ground bark, which is a beauty product in Myanmar and likewise serves as a sun block.
It’s also common to hear a kissing sound in the coffee shops and restaurants as residents utilize the kissing sound as a call for service. Apparently it’s simpler for staff to identify the place of the kissing sound so don’t be distressed!
Both most important expressions you require in Myanmar are:
Hello there: Ming-gu-la-bah
Not only is it courteous, yet it is well received. Be ready for most locals to giggle in reaction– they are not mocking you; they are just not expecting it.
Various other practical concerns in Myanmar
Laundry is generally done by hand and is billed per item instead of kilo so try to turn up with your clothing washed and also unless you wish to hand over $20 for a load of washing, select the items you really need washing as well as wash your smaller items on your own as you go.
Toiletries are simple to find by but tampons are not so bring what you require with you.
You can’t flush toilet tissue or sanitary products– this is really typical in developing nations where the plumbing system can’t handle anything other than bodily fluids.
Myanmar has that odd half-hour difference| to its time zone so it’s 6 and a half hrs in advance of GMT.
Most of the plug sockets of Myanmar have multiple adaptors for European and North American 2-pin connects along with British three-pin.
Wi-fi is bad in Myanmar so you either need to get over it or, far better still, acquire a local SIM. You can obtain one at most flight terminals when you land or in one of the shops in the road and also the shop personnel will have you set up in about 5 mins. You can learn more about your network choices right here. Still, with 1 mbps taken into consideration to be a ‘rapid’ link, don’t anticipate to be downloading video clips whenever. On-line accessibility has improved, with wi-fi the norm– most hotels, guesthouses and coffee shops have it free of cost– as well as the internet is currently spreading tomore remote places. Yet tightly squeezed bandwidth and power outages can use the net an aggravating exercise.
Do your research in advance or pack a guidebook, and do not anticipate to Skype home extremely often, it’s barely possible to get a messenger service to operate at times!
You’ll be better with a knapsack than a suitcase. Travel suitcases aren’t perfect on dusty, sandy, unevenroadways. Getting in and also out of myriad forms of transport and hefting it up lots of high stairs isn’t better.
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