Top Myanmar Travel Tips – Yangon Myanmar Tour Package
Myanmar or Burma? Why Did it Modify Its Name?
The nation officially known as Burma gained independence in 1948 from occupying forces, yet it wasn’t up 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 viewed as a relic of the nation’s former British colonial past, and also Myanmar as more inclusive of the many ethnic groups in the country. Other names were also altered, which is why you will certainly see Rangoon currently referred to as Yangon.
For tourism, Burma travel is Myanmar travel. Same same, as they say in Southeast Asia.
Both the names Burma as well as Myanmar are still made use of interchangeably, on the ground and also on the world stage. This short article breaks down the changes, what you ‘should’ say and the inquiry: does it even matter?
Ideal Times to Visit Myanmar
There are generally three periods in which you can go to Myanmar:
October to March: Dry, winter season
March to May: Hot, summer period
May to October: Wet, rainy season
The popular, high season is November to February when the climate is warm but not stifling, as well as attracts the greatest number of visitors. This, subsequently, makes the limited lodging choices challenging to secure as well as will imply trying to book ahead or face paying out for the a lot more costly choices left over.
March to May is the time when the temperature level rises in Myanmar and impending rains are due. There is a minimal number of vacationers which makes it very easy to book accommodation but it is unbelievably warm.
An e-Visa is available to tourists from these 100 countries.
To get one, go to the official e-Visa internet site. You’ll be required to upload a passport photo as well as pay a cost of $50.
It takes under 10 mins to apply and you should get approval within 3 working days.
Print out your e-Visa letter, show it when you arrive and you’re in.
Your e-Visa letter is valid for 90- days from the day of issue and also permits you a 28 day stay in Myanmar
Obtaining a visa from your local embassy might be less costly– if you intend to save some money, looking for a visa by means of your local Myanmar embassy might be less expensive. For instance, the price is simply , 14 in the UK however $40 in the USA, so do your research and do not forget to consider mailing costs.
It is only possible to enter Myanmar on an e-visa at Yangon, Mandalay and also Nay Pyi Taw international airports; and also at three Thai-Myanmar land border crossings Tachileik, Myawadi (Myawaddy) as well as Kawthoung (Kawthaung). Read the immigration site for the most recent at the time you take a trip.
Flights to Myanmar are the typical option for tourists as the initial mode of entry, with routine scheduled services from Bangkok. But, taking into consideration where Myanmar is located– surrounded by China to the North and also northeast, Thailand and Laos to the east and also India as well as Bangladesh to its west– there are numerous methods for land entrance, although not every one of them are suggested because of safety and security.
No matter, you must define a “Port of Entry” in your on the internet application which denotes exactly how you will certainly be reaching Myanmar. You will be provided a list of options, from which you will certainly need to pick among the following:
Myanmar Designated International Airports:
- Mandalay (situated right in the center of Myanmar)
- Yangon (situated in the south)
- Nay Pyi Taw (situated in between Mandalay and 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 boundary to western Thailand)
- Kawthaung (in the most southern part of Myanmar, in the Tanintharyi Area on the boundary of the Thai Peninsula as well as the cluster of islands)
- Tamu (in the Sagaing Area of northwestern Myanmar on the boundary to northeastern India).
- Rih Khaw Dar (a six-hour drive from the boundary village of Khawmawi in the northwestern Chin State of Myanmar on the boundary of Southeastern India).
Actually, you can go into Myanmar at any designated “Port of Entry” yet it is best to adhere to the one you originally specified ideally to avoid any type of hold up in the handling of your visa upon arrival.
You can exit at any one of the International Airports and also Land Border Checkpoints since your exit point does not need to be specified up front. In addition, you might leave at the Htikee Land Border Checkpoint, although entry from here is not possible.
Flying in as well as out of Yangon is less expensive and also has more links than Mandalay.
Navigating Myanmar– Long Distance
Myanmar’s local transport options might be frustrating yet the cross country propositions are much more attractive.
Distances are far, road travel is slow-moving and flying is economical so it may be your far better choice.
You can still reserve flights the traditional means by wandering right into a travel agent.
Flying within Myanmar is a bit like flying in the older days– check-in entails ticking individuals off a list of printed names, luggage claim can mean leaving the airport terminal and also getting your bag off a cart by the airplane as well as flight announcements are made by an individual holding up a sign and also calling your flight (in incomprehensible English). It actually is an experience. As well as a great deal of fun if you don’t let it get you stressed.Buses are affordable with competing companies as well as a series of high-end levels.
Many buses travel overnight which is terrific for not losing a day of sightseeing and tour, yet isn’t so wonderful for sleep. Likewise, you’ll often tend to arrive at odd times in the morning and also will not be able to check into your hostel or hotel until 2 p.m. That’s a great deal of hrs awaiting a ‘top-up’ nap. Consider if it will certainly be more affordable to fly if you’re going to book accommodation the very same night to sleep immediately.
Buses are extremely chilly, the deluxe buses will offer you a blanket yet, use your warm layers.
Even the VIP bus does not have a toilet onboard so anticipate to stop every couple of hours for a food and also toilet break– a 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 music CD’s as well as tacky video till the early hrs of the early morning. Pack your iPod, buy some sturdy extreme ear plugs or kindly request for the sound to be shut off.
Never ask a driver about reaches of the southerly Mon State as well as Tenasserim region are usually out-of-bounds to tourists unless you have actually gotten a government visa in advance. In some locations you’ll need a guide to chaperone you. Check before you make plans.
Getting off the beaten path is difficult– even within the ‘open’ parts, Myanmar’s developing infrastructure implies that there are set routes you can travel and you’ll struggle to go any other way. Trying to do otherwise might be very costly.
Work your sightseeing around the heat– Myanmar is well-known for its daybreaks and also sunsets, which also corresponds perfectly with staying inside (probably for a nap or pool dip if you have one) throughout the mid-day .
Anticipate to go barefoot a great deal in temples on seriously grubby floors. In temples where birds are nesting or monkeys and also dogs hangout, you can anticipate to step in a lot of animal faeces while you’re discovering Myanmar’s temples. Socks aren’t allowed either so you just need to get used to it. Have wipes for your feet so you can wipe some after each visit.
Be a mindful temple visitor, most of Myanmar’s temples are places of worship, not simply sights for vacationers. Respect ‘do not climb/do not enter’ signs and keep your voice down– people will be praying.
Expect to pay an access charge for Bagan and Inle Lake– this fee is charged to all foreigners and there’s no getting around it. The fees are: Bagan– $20; Inle Lake– $10.
Holiday accommodation in Myanmar
Hostels are gradually opening, meaning you can rest in low-cost accommodation than you could a few years earlier. Things are slowly improving for solo visitors, though costs are still far more of what you’ll pay somewhere else in Southeast Asia.
Guesthouses are rustic yet captivating. The holiday accommodation offers a feeling for what a local house may be like, basic however perfectly decorated in teak) as well as the morning meal was typically remarkable. Plus, it’s nice to put money into the hands of the citizens, not some large brand chain.
The majority of hostels, hotels as well as guesthouses offer a towel however you might have to provide a refundable $10 down payment on check-in. Hotels will likewise provide some form of toiletries. Some hostels as well as guesthouses do also, yet it can’t be relied on.
Be cautious about the curfew– some guesthouses might lock the door at night, leaving you unable to access your bed. Check before you go out for the night.
Reserve lodging as well as transportation beforehand throughout peak period. The tourist market in Myanmar appears to have actually experienced a boom which the infrastructure has actually fallen short to keep pace with. Most hotels are tiny as well as boutique like thus if there’s someplace certain you intend to stay it’s vital to book ahead of time. It is especially essential to book ahead during high period (November to March). In some rural areas, monasteries will take travellers in for a small fee if there are no rooms available. Yet don’t depend on the local monks being able to help you out.
Food and also Drink in Myanmar
Order local dishes: it is constantly the very best choice. There are noodles at night bus stops, fermented tea leaf salads in local restaurants and also an amazing variety of curries and also salads
Use chopsticks: Numerous items of cutlery are wiped with a not so great looking water supply as well as dishcloth. Packaged chopsticks are an excellent choice.
Inform the staff if you do not eat something. If you like a little spice in your dishes specify just how much spice you like as the cooks often tend to go easy on vacationers!
The fish is delicious and also a terrific, fresh choice in the majority of dining establishments.
There is quite a great deal of sugar in the food and also drinks. If you aren’t a fan of sugar there’s an option to skip the sugar (tea, coffee, fresh blended juices), make certain you request for ‘no sugar’.
Salads feature heavily on food selections yet don’t anticipate a fresh crunch– most salads are marinated as well as seasoned in oil, salt and also lime juice as well as don’t generally include salad leaves.
Hygiene standards are low in Myanmar as well as you could get ill once.
Street food isn’t as prolific as other areas in Southeast Asia yet you can locate it and also it’s great. Street food will tend to be about 1,000-1,700 kyat a dish (under $2).
You can not consume the water yet most hotels, hostels and guesthouses supply free water either in bottles in your space or by means of a big water dispenser at reception. Or else, bottled water is extremely affordable.
Alcohol is commonly available with beer, rum and also bourbon being prominent choices.
Beer stations are very easy to discover and also enjoyable places to get a beverage with the locals if you don’t wish to being in a dining establishment.
Be aware that there isn’t a late night culture in Myanmar– most dining establishments close by 9 p.m. and bars follow suit around 10– 11 p.m. This is a country where meditation at dawn is a lot more popular than late night alcohol consumption.
Large chains can not be located and also brands remain in short supply. Myanmar isn’t a country of fast-food chains and also beyond drink brands like Coke and also Schwepps Tonic, you’re going to be buying local brand names as well as eating from local dining establishments.
Stores are little, family owned affairs– you won’t find a 7-Eleven. There are a few equal ‘Grab ‘n’ Go’ stores dotted around, yet mostly you’re going to get treats as well as beverages from small, local businesses. They can look a little bit intimidating, like you’re intruding by strolling in. Don’t fret, simply step in, they want your business.
There are individuals smoking indoors- this can be a shock if you come from a country where smoking in public areas has actually long been prohibited.
Health and Safety in Myanmar
Myanmar is an incredibly safe country– the majority of the populace is Buddhist as well as with a belief in karma, criminal activity levels are remarkably low.
Still, you should take the typical safety measures of using hotel lockers or safes for your belongings. Women visitors should not experience any type of harassment or different treatment.
Do take hand sanitiser– the cash is unclean and also there isn’t always soap in restrooms so use your sanitiser before you touch anything that will certainly go near your mouth.
Look out for the dust- Myanmar can be very dusty so do bring something to cover your mouth and nose when biking around. Additionally take care with your a/c– Myanmar can be as warm. Subsequently, many travellers use the a/c in their room yet sleeping in low temperatures can make you sick.
Fruit is simple to come by so top up your body immune system with nutrients that way. However, as it’s typically pre-cut, try to find a vendor that has kept the flies away as well as if it’s sluiced with water, ensure it’s filtered water.
Most government advisories caution against travel to parts of Rakhine (Rakhaing) State in western Myanmar, where clashes between local authorities and also the minority Muslim (Rohingya) communities has brought about the mass displacement of thousands of individuals. Some other parts of the nation stay shut to foreigners due to dispute in between the government as well as different ethnic militaries gathered in eastern and northern Myanmar. These areas are primarily in Kachin and Shan States, close to the frontiers with China and also Thailand, and also far from the major tourist locations.
Accurate details on conflicts as well as closed areas can be challenging to come by. Check your government’s advice prior to taking a trip, as well as ask about the situation when you are in Myanmar. Lonely Planet’s Thorn Tree travel forum is an excellent resource of information from travellers on the ground.
What to wear in Myanmar
The majority of the locals dress conservatively| as well as cover their shoulders and legs despite the heat, and also you will make everyone much more comfortable if you do the same.
Knee length shorts, long skirts, elephant pants as well as tees are the attire of choice. These are strongly encouraged as well as often enforced for getting in the temples and pagodas.
Everybody puts on skirts– men and women alike– the longyi, a long skirt, is the popular traditional dress in Myanmar for both men and women. Lots of visitors pick one up as they’re breezy in the heat and tick the ‘traditional wear’ box. They are convenient for sightseeing so get an inexpensive one a the market if you have the chance.
Flip flops are vital! Entering pagodas means going barefoot and flip flops are the most effective footwear option. Battling with shoelaces in the scorching heat is an unwanted interruption. Bring some cleaning wipes for your feet after going to a pagoda.
Myanmar is a conservative country so you’ll blend far better if you dress conservatively (covering your knees and also shoulders). You will find individuals in shorts and strappy tops in the cities and at the beach however somewhere else it’s much less common.
The local individuals are extremely genteel as well as not used to confrontation so pack your good manners as well as your patience. Travel can be frustrating, warm as well as slow-moving yet bear in mind: you chose to check out Myanmar and that it’s not like being at home is no good reason to take it out on the residents. Nonetheless, haggle hard with the taxi drivers.
You may get stopped a lot by locals who want to talk. Travelers are no more a novelty in the majority of Southeast Asia but Myanmar is different. Typically individuals are wonderful and also are happy to appear in photos and try as well as chat via minimal usual words or sign language.
You mayalso get stared at a lot which is typically best dealt with by offering a smile as well as 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 spewing red coloured saliva after eating betel quids, tiny parcels that contain tobacco, spices and areca nuts wrapped in a betel leaf. It’s most likely popular| due to the fact that it supplies a hit that amounts to six cups of coffee. But, as well as being dangerous when chewed long term, the spin-off is bright-red saliva which is spat out, many times onto the ground.
Lots of residents have the tell tale red discolored teeth and taxi drivers frequently roll down the window in sluggish traffic to spit after eating on the betel quids.
There is some begging by children in Myanmar and as heartbreaking as it is, you shouldn’t give to the kids. 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 item in Myanmar as well as additionally acts as a sunscreen.
It’s also common to hear a kissing sound in the coffee shops and also dining establishments as citizens make use of the kissing noise as an ask for service. Apparently it’s much easier for staff to identify the location of the kissing noise so don’t be upset!
Both crucial phrases you need in Myanmar are:
Hello there: Ming-gu-la-bah
Not only is it polite, but it is well received. Be ready for many locals to giggle in response– they are not mocking you; they are just not anticipating it.
Various other practical concerns in Myanmar
Laundry is generally done by hand and is billed per item rather than kilo so try to turn up with your clothing laundered as well as unless you want to turn over $20 for a load of washing, select the items you really require washing and also clean your smaller items on your own as you go.
Toiletries are simple to find by however tampons are not so bring what you require with you.
You can not flush toilet paper or sanitary products– this is really common in developing countries where the plumbing system can not handle anything apart from bodily fluids.
Myanmar has that strange half-hour difference| to its time area so it’s 6 and a half hours in advance of GMT.
Most of the plug sockets of Myanmar have several adaptors for European and also North American 2-pin plugs in addition to British three-pin.
Wi-fi is bad in Myanmar so you either have to get over it or, better still, get a local SIM. You can get one at the majority of flight terminals when you land or in one of the stores in the road as well as the shop staff will have you set up in about 5 mins. You can find out more about your network selections below. Still, with 1 mbps considered to be a ‘fast’ connection, don’t expect to be downloading video clips any time. On-line accessibility has improved, with wi-fi coming to be the standard– most hotels, guesthouses and also coffee shops have it totally free– as well as the web is now spreading tofarther areas. However tightly squeezed bandwidth as well as power interruptions can make using the net a frustrating exercise.
Do your research beforehand or pack a guidebook, and don’t anticipate to Skype home very frequently, it’s barely possible to get a messenger service to operate at times!
You’ll be much better with a backpack than a luggage. Suitcases aren’t suitable on dusty, sandy, unevenroads. Getting in as well as out of myriad forms of transportation and also hefting it up several high stairs isn’t much better.
Thanks for reading this guide to Top Traveling Tips for Myanmar – Yangon Myanmar Tour Package