Myanmar has not been on the radar of many Southeast Asian tourists, and it is difficult to understand why. The country is a real hidden gem that should pique the attention of everyone interested in culture and history. Walking around Yangon transports you to the period of British colonial control in the eighteenth century. Clean, bright parks and temples coexist with crumbling colonial-style structures and huge potholes. Its cultural and religious features, like as the Shwedagon Pagoda, contribute to the unique atmosphere of the city, as do the inhabitants’ smiles. Every street corner has something fresh to offer, and a little boat over the river enables you to see rural life in the countryside. Bago, renowned for its Buddhist vistas, the delta city of Twante, known for its pottery, and the pilgrimage site of Kyaiktiyo, with its golden rock that rocks dangerously on a cliff, are all cultural and historical hotspots near Yangon.
It’s definitely worth seeing more of Bamar’s heart; however, the country’s edges are out of bounds for outsiders. Bagan, the old city, is a genuine treasure that provides a sense of what life may have been like in the 11th and 12th centuries. Marco Polo described it as a “living golden metropolis with tinkling bells and the sounds of monks’ tunics.” It has the world’s biggest and densest collection of temples, pagodas, stupas, and Buddhist ruins. Mrauk U is another of those strange places: a quiet town now, its decaying temples and pagodas remember an era when it was the seat of an empire engaged in vast marine commerce with Portuguese, Dutch, French, and Arab traders. Inwa, another historic city within Daylay distance of Mandalay, with remains that remind tourists of its past grandeur. Pyin U Lwin, an ancient British mountain resort with somewhat milder temps, should not be overlooked.
The nation is not short in natural wonders. Inle Lake is home to the backpacker population, and it’s one of the few locations that seems like a tourist trap. Still, a vacation to Myanmar isn’t complete until you take a boat ride on the lake. It has a distinct vibe, with tribes living in stilted homes and paddling in ancient wooden boats with one leg. The country’s southern coast also contains several beaches, including Chaung Tha and Ngapali. If you come outside of the typical holiday season, you may find yourself on a lovely white sand beach.