People of Myanmar – A Photo Story
P.S. This article gives a sneak peek into the daily life of people in Myanmar. In this troubled time, instead of giving a long itinerary about how to plan a trip, I shall talk about how does life runs in Myanmar through this Photo Story.
A sneak peek into daily life in Myanmar – Photostory
As a neighboring country to India, Myanmar has a vast similarity with our country in terms of culture, food, climate, and people. However, as soon as I entered through the borders of Myanmar in Tamu, I felt as if I time traveled 10 years back of what my country was. Although the topography of Manipur (Indian Bordering State) and the regions of Tamu didn’t have any big difference but what changed was the people, language, and my phone network which suddenly got into international network !!
Read about my India-Myanmar Border crossing by Road
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Myanmar formerly known as Burma (in fact I still prefer to call it so) had remained isolated under the military regime for over 40 years before it got independence. And, going through the series of revolution and under the several ruling parties, people of Myanmar have come a long way witnessing all of that. When I heard that Myanmar is still considered the friendliest nation in South East Asia, I had to witness it, to experience the validity of the fact.
It is the strength of their resilience which is the key to their smile.
1. Mandalay (Former Imperial Capital of Myanmar)
My first city in Myanmar, as soon as my car entered winding past the gigantic Irrawaddy river. Although, I was tad sleepy and cranky to say the least but managed to peeped outside the window of that damn car which was carrying me for the last 19 hours from Tamu. (Read about my road journey from India-Myanmar) I saw the day had already started for the people in Myanmar. The fishermen were already setting their boats to go out fishing, wholesale markets were already growing with activity, and roads were already down to business with street vendors selling various vegetables, fruits, fish, flowers and all by 8 am.
Mandalay is home to many palaces and Buddhist temples because it was once the capital of imperial Myanmar (Burma).
These photographs speak volumes about the daily life in Mandalay –
Two days in Mandalay were not enough for me, as I had to skip so many places to be visited. But by careful planning of what should be visited and what not. One must refer to a local city tour map or it would be a great idea to sign up with a touring group for unique experiences.
I did a food tour with Beyond Boundaries, Myanmar.
So, I highly recommend them for definitely offbeat experience.
My U-Bein Bridge experience, Mandalay was not as good as I expected. We had decided to catch the sunset on the bridge which was our last place for the day. But, as I reached the place, there were at least 500 tourists on the same. And by the time I managed to get to the bridge, it was already dark and there was no place to even stand and click properly. All I got was the two decent shots which I felt was pertinent enough to describe the place.
Romantic for some and peaceful for others (U-Bein Bridge)
Otherwise, the most common shot you would find in the net, will be like this :
2. Bagan – Myanmar’s city of countless temples and Stupas
One of my main reasons to plan for a Myanmar trip around new years was to catch the spectacular sunrises and sunsets from different vantage points in and around Bagan. And I did that for three days.
Did you know that Bagan was formerly known as Pagan in the Mandalay regions of Myanmar, before this ? And it has nearly 10,000 buddhist monuments consisting of (temples, stupas and pagodas)
Bagan is home to the largest and densest concentration of Buddhist temples, pagodas, stupas and ruins in the world with many dating from the 11th and 12th centuries.
The shape and construction of each building are highly significant in Buddhism with each component taking on spiritual meaning.
Bagan is the first UNESCO World Heritage Site acclaimed city in Myanmar of having over
Bagan is fondly known as the sea of temples.
Another delight was to watch catch the sunrise and see the Hot-Air Balloon in the morning sky. Only if I had close to 350 USD to spare for a 10 mins ride, I would have then given some mind-blowing pictures from up above the sky. So here are the few shots I clicked up here
Bagan Sunsets were no less beautiful, there are very few places in my experiences where I have witnessed both sunrises and sunsets which are equally beautiful.
We were fortunate to have lunch with the locals in Bagan on one of the days touring around with Beyond Boundaries, Myanmar. This family made us warm Burmese food and fed us with all love and care.
Bagan, being a tourist-friendly place also has artifacts hubs along with many lacquerware workshops. Lacquerware is one of the major selling handicraft items of Myanmar. In the picture, it is seen that generally young women are involved in the occupation mostly.
Did you know , that Thanaka Paint on face is considered as the symbol of beauty and pride amongst women in Myanmar?
3. Inle Lake – One of the prettiest places in Myanmar
True, it is indeed, one of my favorite places in Myanmar. Stunning landscapes, serene Lakeview, gorgeous weather, and mindblowing Shan cuisine. The people I met in Inle Lake were the kindest and friendliest of the lot.
Oh, did I forget to mention that weather is amazing here, because of hilly scapes surrounding? Well, Inle lake is also been recognize as the World Unesco heritage sites.
And, for that along with Bagan, you have to pay an archeological site fee of USD 10 during entry.
Inle Lake is also known for a traditional form of fishing practiced by the Intha fishermen. The people of the lake are called Intha. They have a unique way of catching fish in the shallow water. Those who have not seen this technique before will be surprised at how they made fishing possible without falling. It’s done by balancing on one leg with the help of rowing sticks and fishing with another.
You won’t be surprised that this fishing technique is only unique and done in Inle Lake .
Kayan Tribe is one of the indigenous tribes of Myanmar. And, most of the traditional women (young and old ) wear this as a symbol of pride. The belief is the longer the neck, the more beautiful the woman.
4. Yangon (City of colonial attractions, Myanmar)
My last city before I returned from Myanmar, was Yangon (formerly known as Rangoon). This city had my particular interest for its similarity with my city, Kolkata. Myanmar was also under British colonial rule for several years before it claimed its independence. And that is evident in its British style architecture in the downtown city.
Yangon is also one of the major business hubs of Myanmar presently. As, it serves as one of the major trading ports of Myanmar.
Hope you all know, that Naypyidaw is the present capital of Myanmar.
Shwedagon Pagoda is the star attraction of Yangon and it stands out from all the rest of Pagodas in Yangon. Locally known as Shwedagon Zedi Daw The, it sits atop of a hill and is 99 meters high. It can be seen from most places of Yangon day and night as the golden roof illuminates the city.
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So, even if travel is stalled for some time but there is always a way to satiate your wanderlust minds with this virtual tour of Myanmar.
If you have liked this article, don’t forget to share it with others. And, for your future travel I shall be writing more on travel tips from various places I have travelled. So, you can subscribe to my blog by simply putting your email IDs in the Subscription Box to your top right.
You May like to Read on Holi Festival in India
Until then, Cezu tin ba deh (Thank you)