Myanmar (also known as Burma) may not be as famous as some other asian countries, but since the National League for Democracy came to power during the historic general election of November 2015 it opened up to the outside world and is becoming more and more popular among tourists. Today we want to show you some of the country’s best destinations.
Shwedagon Paya (Yangon)
Yangon, the biggest city of Myanmar and its previous capital is where most of the tourists start their journey through this fascinating country. While the city itself is quite lovely, with colonial architecture, lots of space and green landscape, what makes it so famous is the famous Shwedagon Paya located in Yangon. It is a large temples complex built between VI and X century located on top of a small hill. It is the most sacred place for the inhabitants of Myanmar. The largest temple is nearly 100m tall and is allegedly covered in 6 tons of gold flakes. The whole complex is full of tourists, monks and locals all day long. Visiting it is a great opportunity to meet new people and get a glimpse at the culture of the country.
There are over 2000 temples, monasteries and other buildings of different sizes located all around this ancient city. Their construction began in the IX century and together they create an insane view, compared only to the Angkor Wat in Cambodia. Scattered across 40 square kilometres with lots of greenery all around it it is simply the perfect destination for any traveller willing to see something truly special. You can walk around the entire area and even climb or enter most of the temples. Bagan itself is a small town and while it doesn’t have much to offer this incredible complex truly makes up for it.
One of Bagan’s best known temples, the Ananda Pahto is also one of the most beautiful of them all. This masterpiece of the Mon architecture is a view to remember with its central square of 53 metres and the golden corn-cob hti shimmering across the plains, its reflection visible from miles away. It said to have been built Thought to have been built between 1090 and 1105 by King Kyanzittha. Damaged during the 1975 and 2016 earthquakes it remains open to visitors.
Mandalay Hill erects 250 meters above the ground. With the dream-like Sutaungpyei Pagoda on top and an incredible view of the Mandalay plain it is definitely a must-see. There are 4 sets of steps leading to the top as well as an elevator. It is definitely to climb them as the view you’re going to see is unforgettable. Most tourists climb the hill in the afternoon to see the sunset. If you don’t mind crowds we recommend you do just that, although the view is almost equally beautiful all through the day.
More modest than the Shwedagon this temple has a certain charm to it that is impossible to copy. With the central Buddha image holding the main spot of the Pagoda it astonishes tourists from all around the World with how delicately cared for is the 3.5 metre-tall seated Buddha statue. Pilgrims come from all over the Buddhist world, to worship at the its feet and to stick gold leaves on the body. It is definitely quite a view.
A shallow lake famous due to its floating city, almost untouched by the civilization… If that doesn’t make you want to drop everything and see it for yourself then the opportunity of moving around it in the local boats and meeting its friendly inhabitants will! It is a must-see as one of Myanmar’s most iconic destinations.
Located on the Mount Kyaiktiyo (Kyite Htee Yoe) it is one of the three most sacred religious sites in Myanmar. What makes it so famous is the huge golden rock at its summit.Pilgrims come from all around the buddhist world to add gold leaf to the rock balancing on the edge of the mountain. It is truly a magical place and the view from the mount is also astonishing.
While Myanmar may not yet be the most famous destination in Asia, it definitely deserves attention. It leaves you breathless and wanting more, and after all, isn’t that what all the places we visit should do?