Greek mythology spins a tale of a man who wished that everything he touched would magically turn into gold. The man, named Midas, quickly realized his wish was a curse as he endured the consequences of his greed.
Nowadays, saying that someone has the ‘Midas Touch’ implies they have a noticeably good fortune. Although travel to Myanmar won’t yield myths about men who magically turn items into gold, a trip to this beautiful land is golden indeed.
Hailed as the “The Golden Land”, Myanmar is home to hundreds of golden pagodas sprinkled across the countryside, and is quickly becoming a sought after tourist destination. After years of isolation due to an intolerant government, Myanmar is becoming more popular, and its tourism industry is exploding with activity. This friendly nation is projected to have many international visitors over the next decade.
Formerly known as Burma, the picturesque countryside is home to welcoming locals who enjoy practicing the English language and welcoming tourists. As you wander through the ancient city of Myanmar, here are some helpful tips to keep mind:
Eat Fresh. Thanks to the tropical climate, Myanmar yields some of the freshest fruits around. One can grab a delightful smoothie or fresh fruit for next to nothing. Feel free to enjoy the local cuisine as it is inexpensive and plentiful, with restaurants and street vendors serving up feasts fit for King Midas himself.
Strike a Pose. Don’t forget your camera and be prepared to immerse yourself in the dreamscape known as Bagan. With temples spanning across a seemingly endless horizon, this ancient city resembles more of a movie set than reality.
Embrace the Noodle. You won’t find the Golden Arches of fast food in Myanmar as Rice noodles the favorite dish. Burmese fare uses noodles as a staple. There’s Mohinga, a dish with noodles simmered in an orange fish sauce, Shan Noodles, and a more traditional dish stir-fried with chicken, peanuts and vegetables. There is also the delightful Onnokauswe, a delicious noodle dish doused with sweet coconut milk. The food in Myanmar is derived from Chinese, Thai and Indian and is sure to satisfy even the most discerning palette.
- Get Organized. Those traveling to Myanmar must have a valid Visa and a passport. Once in the country, you will be asked to show proof of passport with a current visa at all transportation depots including airports, hotels and train stations. To make things easier for travelers, the Government of Burma recently began accepting online Visa applications through an eVisa program for tourist visas.
If you’re looking for a fun, affordable adventure, you’ll want to consider travel to Myanmar. This gem of a destination won’t remain unscathed from modern society and culture for too long. In a technology-driven world, it’s a rarity to behold a place where the silhouettes of temples outnumber the tourists. Myanmar is an untouched landscape that beckons to be explored.