Yes, Myanmar could be called one of the least-developed countries of Southeast Asia but that doesn’t make it short of culture, history, or natural beauty. After the end of an entire era of tyrannous military rule, the country has gradually opened up to the outside world. Are you thinking of going out for a trip to this fascinating and interesting nation? If yes, wait till you read this article.
A peek-a-boo into the country
Myanmar is a country that is replete with intriguing tradition and history and this is gradually becoming one of the most famous destinations to visit. Pagodas, ancient temples, unaffected landscapes, and a contemporary culture helped Myanmar open up to the modern world. As a tourist, there is enough to discover and learn about this country. It was in 2015 that Myanmar, formerly called Burma, voted their first-ever democratic government in around half a century’s time. Read on to know more about backpacking Myanmar.
Planning your trip to Myanmar
When is the ideal time to visit Myanmar?
Though Myanmar is a country that can be visited throughout the entire year, thanks to its tropical climate, yet as a general rule, yet experts advise you to stay away from the months of June to September. This is primarily the wet season and rain comes in full swing during these months. In fact, there are places like Ngapali Beach which closes down during monsoon due to unreachable roads.
November to February is the ideal time to visit Myanmar as it is neither too hot nor too cold. There is a light breeze that always keeps blowing during this time. March to May will subject you to scorching heat and hence this time should be avoided for obvious reasons.
Visa requirements for Myanmar
Once you own a valid passport, you are certainly not going to face any issues while entering Myanmar via air or land. A Myanmar e-visa is valid for 28 days and it costs you around $50 and citizens of 100 countries can apply for tourist visas through their official government website. However, make sure you book an e-visa a month in advance before the actual departure date so that you receive your visa confirmation on time.
Can you travel to Myanmar now during the pandemic?
Being an epic country that is always going through some kind of major overhaul, the tourism industry urges people to get there as soon as possible. You can climb up several Bagan pagodas but with time this will certainly end. Now that the whole world is going through the COVID-19 pandemic, UNESCO will gradually allow tourists to view only the best temples, that too from a safe distance.
Given the current situation, you are allowed to rent an e-bike in Bagan and visit temples that are not listed on the tourist map. If you’re thinking of spending a memorable honeymoon in this country, this would certainly be the most romantic destination without any doubt.
Tackling your travel budget in Myanmar
Contrary to your belief, Myanmar isn’t a cheap spot mainly due to a dearth of supply of goods though it is located in Southeast Asia and other less developed countries in the region. This is why you have to plan a thrifty and wise budget when you are here.
Kyat, (pronounced as ‘chat’) is the local currency of Myanmar but the US dollar is also accepted widely in this country. When visiting Myanmar, try to carry a mixture of kyats, US dollars, and credit cards so that you have backup options. Although there are growing number of ATMs, it is vital to carry few bills of US dollar along with you. In case an ATM is out of service or you don’t get access to an ATM, you won’t face a big issue with money.
Credit cards are widely accepted in high-end hotels, travel agents, and airlines. Make sure you notify your credit card company about your travel plan before you move towards Myanmar so that they don’t freeze your cards while identifying odd and bizarre activities.
Keeping in mind the fact that tourism has started booming in Myanmar, guesthouses, hostels, and hotels are popping up every now and then. Accommodations are pretty basic but they are slightly costlier than Southeast Asia. Book your economy dorm rooms as this is the place where budget backpackers will find solace. Click here to know more about the reasons why Myanmar is a must-visit destination.
Susan Noel is an experienced content writer. She is associated with many renowned travel blogs as a guest author where she shares her valuable travel tips with the audience.