Myanmar: All you need to know about travelling to this Asian country
11 November 2013
Myanmar: The Basics
Population: Statistics vary but around 50 million
Religion: Approximately 89% of the population is Buddhist. Hinduism is practiced mainly by Burmese Indians.
Emergency numbers: 192 (ambulance), 199 (police), 192 (fire)
Who needs one?
All visitors to Myanmar must obtain visas. In September 2010, the Burmese government suspended its visa on arrival program after only four months. A tourist visa is $35 and allows a stay of up to 28 days. Writers, journalists, editors, film producers and photographers may have trouble obtaining a visa. Stating these occupations on your application may result in your visa being declined. For information visit myanmar.e-consulate.org.
- Myanmar has quite a few nasty snakes, including cobras, kraits and the Russell’s Viper, one of Asia’a deadliest snakes. Wear the right footwear and keep an eye out for critters at all times.
- Dengue and malaria are a problem in Myanmar, so be sure to take adequate precautions against both of them.
Learn the Lingo
Good Morning: Mingalar ba
Thank you: Kyei zu tin ba de
How much is this? Bel lau lel
I am hungry: Hsa bi
I’ll be back soon: Makya gin pyan la me
Yangon, Mandalay, Bagan, Inle Lake, Kyaitko, Moulmein
- “The Big Four”: Yangon – Mandalay – Bagan – Inle Lake
- South: Yangon – Kyaikto – Moulmein
Time and Dates
Time difference from Hong Kong
1.5 hours behind
When to go
The monsoon season lasts from May to October; thereafter temperatures cool a bit from November to February before heating back up between March to April. The climate in the higher altitudes of northern Myanmar is temperate throughout the year, but is humid in lower Myanmar along the coastlines and around the delta region, which includes Yangon.
13-16 April – Thingyan. Celebrating the Myanmar New Year, this festival lasts for several days and features lots of good-natured water throwing.
21 October – Full Moon of Thadingyut, The end of Buddhist Lent features three days of festivities, with houses and streets illuminated and decorated.
Enjoy this? Get stuck into more Asia
Grab the girls (or your other half) and travel to Central Vietnam before 31 March 2015 for an all-you-can-spa vacation at this fabulous beach resort
Two desert islands, two house reefs and both close to Male airport - Verne's sensational holiday to the Maldives
This unspoiled holiday destination in the Himalayas offers tourism on another level
This Thai holiday was no bendy yoga retreat. This 'break' was full-on exercise from dawn till dusk (with a light meal thrown in)
Shutterbugs! Wondering where to take your camera next? Photographer whiz Felix Hug shows us his favourite picturesque places around Asia
Where to go, what to see and food to try in the capital of the Philippines
Proper doctor’s advice on the most common health issues and how-to travel safely
Katie Roberts takes an alternative tour of the 12th century-temple in Cambodia, plus where to stay in Siem Reap
From private islands in Manila (HK$526!) to treehouses in Ubud (HK$679!), here are five brilliant trips you'll never forget
London city boy’s epic Asian adventure reaches the party capital of the East