Myanmar (Burma)

Bordering the Andaman Sea and the Gulf of Bengal, and previously known as Burma, Myanmar provides visitors with the opportunity to gain a completely different perspective on Asia. Indeed, from its cities to its countryside landscapes, for the most part, Myanmar’s spirit and charm of yesteryear remains intact. The capital Yangoon, otherwise known as Rangoon, has a distinctive colonial feel. Located on a hilltop, overlooking the city, the gilded Great Dragon Pagoda (Shwedagon Pagoda), considered Burma’s most sacred Buddhist pagoda, glistens. Expressing quintessential Burmese art, a Burmese puppet performance is not to be missed.

Nestled along the banks of the Irrawaddy River lies the last royal capital of Burma, Mandalay. Meanwhile, Bagan is home to one of the world’s most incredible archaeological sites: its over 2,000 pagodas and stupas are especially alluring at dawn or dusk. The floating gardens on Inle Lake, replete with indigenous stilt houses along its shores, are also intriguing. Further north, in the foothills of the Himalayas, Putao serves as a gateway to wonderful treks. Erstwhile, located near Thandwe, Myanmar’s most famous beach Ngapali Beach offers crystal turquoise waters, gleaming white sand and some of the country’s best cuisine, especially fish. A little travelled gem filled with warm, kind people—Burma.