For all those who are in love with the mystique of the ancient architecture and want to wander and get lost in the charismatic reminiscences of the ancient civilization, Myanmar backpacking is gold. I visited Myanmar last year and fell in love with it straight away. The mountains, the temples, the lakes, the culture, I was like discovering myself. The only threat I faced in backpacking Myanmar was, I never wanted to come back.
I live in one of the most glamorous cities in the world. I have my family and business setup in Dubai. A lot of people are crazy to visit Dubai because of all the skyscrapers, the shopping centers, the Ferrari World and the insane Palm Islands that Arabs have built. But I know there is a lot of backpackers who are not fascinated by all this glamour and fashion. Backpacking Myanmar is an inspiration for all the nature lovers. This country has a natural instinct that sucks you in, in its mysterious spell. I mean, you can’t just help yourself to get out of its seductive beauty. In this article, I listed down the best places to visit in Myanmar.
The previous capital of the country, formerly known as “Rangoon” is one of the great unsung cities of the world. The ‘Garden City of the East” is most commonly known as the home of Myanmar’s holy of holy’s – the 2,500 year old Shwedagon Pagoda. At 325-feet in height & covered in 60 tons of gold, Shwedagon’s shimmering glory dominates the city skyline. Although Yangon is much more than Shwedagon, you can find a host of fine exotic hotels and restaurants, a burgeoning arts scene, rare antique shops, fascinating markets, and even the night life is rolling with new energy, Yangon is truly an urban experience quite unlike anywhere else.
Began is regarded as one the earliest cities of the world. The city has a high concentration of ancient temples which makes it a winner if you are a fan of shining temples and amazingly beautiful sunsets at the same time. The city has an archaeological importance and discoverers love to visit it. If you want to have a better view of the city and high rise temples, you can ride a hot airballoon in fairly cheap rates.
Mounth Popa / Taung Kalat
This mountain will truly test your daring ability. Mount Popa is an extensive volcano near Began city rising over 5000 feet above the sea level. Visitors climb barefoot up 700 steps to see shrines and the monastery, often accompanied by monkeys en route.
The Mandalay is not much admired by a lot of people because it’s a dirty trading Hub, but never listen to them. The city has a lot more to offer if you see it from an explorer’s eye. Highlights include Myanmar’s 2nd holiest shrine, the Maha Muni gilded Buddha, the picturesque U Bein Bridge (the largest teak structure on earth), the massive, never completed temple of Mingun, the 600 monasteries and nunneries of the Holy Hills of Sagaing, and a whole lot more. Mandalay – as dusty as it may be – should never be overlooked.
The Golden Rock
The Golden Rock is a jawdropping sight that draws, amazes, and even converts people on a regular basis. It’s a small pagoda perched on top of a huge boulder, which in turn is perched on the edge of a cliff in the far south of the country. It is the third holiest shrine, behind Shwedagon Pagoda and the Maha Muni Buddha. Thinking about the secret to its gravity-defying success? It’s secured by one of the Buddha’s hairs.
One of the most famous and amazing places to visit in Myanmar. Like the rest of the country, there is a lot of mystery stored in this lake. The sight of the lake is very captivating and is best known for its distinctive fishermen, who row their dugout canoes standing with a single leg wrapped around a single oar. Despite of the rise in tourism, the lake still provides 70% of Myanmar’s tomatoes. Inle, with its wonderful water bungalow hotels and friendly people, still maintains its intense, yet indescribable mystic.
The Lost City of Mrauk U
The lost city was the capital of the Arakan Empire that ruled over the vast coastal regions of western Myanmar and into India as far as the Ganges River. At this era, the city was as wealthy, diverse and influential in the East as Amsterdam was contemporaneously in the West. The legendary city is now lost but visiting its reminiscences offer a great pleasure to its visitors.
Putao & the Eastern Himalaya
The Himalayas touching Myanmar is a virgin territory as far as visitors go. This region is one of most bio-unique in the world, with an average of 30 to 40 new species of flora and fauna discovered each year. Tourists can have all kinds of adventure sports like river rafting, short treks and bike jaunts,all are available from the beautiful Malikha Lodge.Nothing is like a delicious cocktail and a massage after a long day of exploring.
Myanmar has a lot more to offer than you would probably expect. The Beaches of Ngapali & Ngwe Saung and their spectacular seafood will blow your mind. My experience was absolutely fantastic and I would recommend others to visit this amazing country. It is fairly cheap and definitely worth your money.