Myanmar, the ancient Kingdom of Burma, was one of the hottest destinations of 2013 and is a “must” to do in 2014.
With valleys full of thousands temples, like the ancient valley of Bagan or the city of Mrauk-U, regional capitals such as Mandalay and now Rangoon (Yangon), and pristine beaches on the Andaman sea, such as Ngapali, Myanmar has become a top destination in South East Asia. Easily accessible by plane from major hubs such as Bangkok, Kuala Lumpur or Singapore, you can now discover this fascinating country that has been shut off for many years.
A turbulent past, with the country experiencing military coups, uprisings and rebellions as the country passed from British rule, to Communism, to Military junta, meant that the Kingdom of Burma, as it was known thoughout the majority of the 20th century, was closed to strangers for many years. The ruling army junta changed the country’s name from The Kingdom of Burma to Myanmar in 1989 but the rest of the world continued to be held at bay until, in recent years, the country has made moves toward democratic reform. These efforts have been rewarded by visits by heads of states and the approval of its bid for Chairmanship of ASEAN in 2014.
For Myanmar’s tourist industry, the effects have also been dramatic with visitors flocking to this South East Asian country, to visit the famous cities of Rangoon (Yangon), Mandalay, the lost temples of Bagan, the Inle lake or the shores of the Andaman Sea.
The enforced isolation has meant that Burma has changed little since the days of British rule and is one of the few South East Asian countries untouched by Western culture. This gives the tourist a unique opportunity to take a step back in time and visit an Asia that is fast disappearing elsewhere.
With more than 2 million tourists in 2013, Myanmar has quickly become one of the hottest destinations of the moment and has just been announced as the winner of World’s Best Tourist Destination of 2014 by the European Union Council on Tourism and Trade – one of the most sought after awards in the travel and tourism industry.
As you will have already noticed through the pages of Good To See, I am keen on visitors to countries learning a bit of the local language. Obviously, in some countries, that is easier than in others and it is also more important in some countries than in others.
In Burma you are probably not going to go off the tourist trail too much, because let’s face it, even the tourist trail isn’t exactly well trod. So there will usually be a hotel owner or shop keeper who will speak English even if the general townsfolk don’t, but speaking a native language is not about getting by or even being understood, it is about getting involved and with tonal fluctuations and 12 vowels that’s probably all you will manage.
So here we go!
- Hello – Min ga lar par
- How are you? – Nei kaon la?
- Fine, thank you – Ne kaon ba de
- Please – Kyeizu pyu yue
- Thank You – Kyeizu tin ba de
- Help – kuu nyi par ohn
- I don’t understand – Kya-nau na ma ley bu
- Where is the toilet – ein thar ka bal mhar lal
- How much is it? – Zey beh lout le?
- I am hungry – Nga bite sa de
- Goodbye – Thwa dau mal
For the individual tourist, you will find huge variety of perfect places to stay in this wonderful country: from ecomony to luxury hotels.
BestHotelsMyanmar www.besthotelsmyanmar.com is a new website helping you to find the best hotels and accommodations in Myanmar, in different cities and for different vacations styles.