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Temples of Bagan

Myanmar (Burma) History and culture

History & Culture Holidays in Myanmar

Introduction

Myanmar has opened its arms to the percipient traveller, and richly rewards all those who enter.

Bagan: a veritable trove of pagados

The historic sights of Myanmar are well-defined, but not well-trodden. No holiday would be complete without visiting Bagan, home to over 4,000 pagodas strewn across verdant plains as far as the eye can see. Set along the banks of the Irrawaddy River, it’s accessible either by cruise, tour or one’s own journey. Commit to arriving before dawn to marvel as the rising sun dissipates the low-lying mist, unveiling the pagodas in spectacular hues. Perhaps even view it from above from a hot air balloon with a champagne breakfast for a memorable experience.

Colonial charm and Buddhist values

"Beauty is meaningless until it is shared." So said George Orwell in Burmese Days. One only needs to stroll the streets of Yangon (formerly Rangoon) to discern the rich colonial heritage of the de facto capital. City halls, high court and ministerial buildings form the backdrop to bustling markets, packed with handicrafts and the delicate scents conjured by endearing street food vendors. To get a real and indeed literal feel for the colonial past, opt for a stay at The Strand – the only hotel in the colonial quarter, constructed in 1901.

Vying with the more recent architecture of Yangon for your attention are the magnificent, gold-painted and plated temples and pagodas. Take Shwedagon Pagoda, encrusted with over 4,000 diamonds and hundreds of gold plates. Standing high atop Singuttara Hill and visible from across the city, it is one of the key highlights of any Burma holiday. And across the country, at every turn you'll find monks in resplendent robes roaming serenely, while children wearing thanaka, a thick paste made from bark, wave cheerily as you pass.

Traditional life along the river

To get under the skin of the everyday life in Myanmar, a river cruise will give you a real insight into the lives of locals. Whether it’s the Mekong of the Irrawaddy, experience the graceful serenity of riverside villages, juxtaposed against the unrelenting currents.

Discover Burma with Wexas

A country so new to tourism necessitates expertise to ensure the perfect holiday. Our Myanmar specialists have travelled extensively across the country and are perfectly placed to provide advice tailored to your exact needs. Learn more about tailor-made travel.

 

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