Top places to visit in Myanmar

Highlights of Myanmar
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Ballooning over a dusty plain with thousands of temples and pagodas.. This is Bagan, comparable in splendor to Angkor in Cambodia, and the country's main tourist attraction.

And it's not the only one: Burma is on fire! Not only literally due to the resurgence of tribal armed conflicts. Tourism is finally booming and recently long queues have been reported in embassies to get a visa. Even Obama has officially visited this Buddhist republic, just after his reelection.

Independent travel to Myanmar requires an extra effort of organization. There are no ATMs available, it's hard to book accommodation beforehand, and you need special permissions to go to some areas among other logistic handicaps.

So, is it worth all the hassle? Whatever you decide, Atlas of Wonders believes that a selection of marvelous pictures worth more than a thousand words. Here are the top highlights to visit in Burma, plus a selection off the beaten track. They may serve both to build a route (map at the end) or to be enjoyed from the comfort of your sofa:

Temples Myanmar
Mrauk U is not a nazi submarine, it was the capital of an ancient powerful kingdom.
Image by Jonathan Khee and Martin Sojka

Highlights of Burma
Inle Lake and its funny festivals. Included in any tour company agenda.
Image by Mylene Vijette

Places to go in Burma
Children of the Corn. Just joking, Burma is considered as one of the safest countries for foreigners in the world. The real threats here are tropical diseases and wild fauna.
Image by Thomas Brauner

Places to go in Myanmar
Colorful Burmese mountains. Trekking around Kalaw during the fall may look like this.
Image by Peter Opal Liu

Off the beaten track in Myanmar
The rock that defied gravity. The Kyaiktiyo Golden Rock, precariously decorated on the brink.
Image by Bessie and Kyle

Visual guide Myanmar
Point of arrival and departure. Since 2007, ramshackled Yangon is not the capital of the country anymore. The military junta decided to move inland to the artificial and ghostly Naypyidaw. According to wikipedia, a warning about amphibious invasion was delivered to the military chief by an astrologer. Image by Bessie and Kyle

Mingun Pagoda
Unfinished king size pagoda. A massive pile of bricks in Mingun.
Image by Memorias de Oriente

Falls Myanmar
Falls around Pyin Oo Lwin. Love this name, seems an emoticon.
Image by Ken Marshall

Visual guide Burma
We are not going to compare Kyaut Ka Latt sanctuary with Avatar, promised.
Image by Jacques Beaulieu

Biggest Buddha
Ginormous Buddhas. Although this one in Mawlamyine has been restored and painted, I prefer this older picture. Here it doesn't look so kitsch to me. Image by Emily and Michael Dziedzic

Surreal landscapes. Talking about tacky religious artwork, we can't forget our visit to the Laotian Buddha Park. Endless rows of Buddhas. The biggest Buddhas in the world are still under construction in the Bodhi Tataung complex in Monywa. Image by Jacques Beaulieu

Cliff-perched Monastery
Cliff-perched architecture. Mount Popa, a monastery Meteora style (Greece).
Image by Michael Geminder

Top places Myanmar
Extended sea. Ngapali beach, considered Myanmar's number one.
Image by Jean-Marie Hullot

Ngapali Beach
Unspoiled coast. There are many other beaches to bear in mind, apart from the famous Ngapali.
Image by Simone Dall'Angelo

Mandalay Travel
Get lost near Mandalay. Plenty of picturesque opportunities.
Image by Michael Foley

Burma travel routes
The Bridge on the River Irrawaddy. can you hear the whistling of the tune?
Image by Aung Khaing

Myanmar travel routes
A 1.2 km wooden footbridge. The U Bein's Bridge in Amarapura, more photographed than the one above.
Image by Jean-Marie Hullot

Gokteik viaduct
One crossing more. Go for a scenic train ride over Gokteik viaduct, on the way to Lashio.
Image by Axel Drainville

Tribal Burma
Experience the tribal thing. Jah!
Image by Taina Bee

Objective BurmaWould you like to go?
Image by Abrinsky

View Myanmar in a larger map


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