Burma in ‘Off the Beaten Path’ Travel Top 10

Bagan is an ancient city that flourished between the 9th and 13th century. Some 2,000 temples remain scattered among the arid hills of central Burma today. (Photo: The Irrawaddy)

As Burma’s reforms open up politically and economically, so does it appeal among foreign tourists seem to rise. With visitor restrictions lifted and the country firmly in the international spotlight, tourism is taking off. One million people visited Burma last year and 15 percent increase in visits is expected in 2013.

In a further sign of the country’s growing tourist popularity, virtualtourist.com—a popular, free travel website featuring user-contributed travel guides—chose Burma recently as one of its “Top 10 Places off the beaten path” for 2013.

The Irrawaddy has put online a selection of photos of Bagan, an ancient city that flourished between the 9th and 13th century. Some 2,000 temples remain scattered among the arid hills of central Burma today.

Virtual Tourist travelers wrote about Burma:

Burma has been added to many travelers’ wish lists in the last year after the nation held elections and U.S. political leaders visited the Southeast Asian country.

While the destination just recently appeared on the general public’s radar, Virtual Tourist members have been traveling and enjoying the country for years.

In Rangoon, visitors will find the Shwedagon Paya known to be the most sacred of all Burmese temples with a golden stupa that can be seen from miles away.
Members did note that the complex is filled with things to do and see, and it can be a bit overwhelming so make sure to allow at least half a day to explore the site.

Farther north, the Mandalay division showcases some of the country’s other types of structures such as the teak temple and also hosts great views from atop Mandalay Hill.

Members frequently visited the temples and pagodas of Bagan noting that the Shwesandaw Paya is the best viewpoint of the temples and sunsets in Bagan.

The other nine destinations selected for Virtual Tourist’s Off the Beaten Path Top 10 are Chile, Norway, Romania, and Ecuador’s Galapgos Island, the Chinese city Shanghai, Sri Lanka, Iceland, Zambia’s Victoria Falls and Antarctica.


2 Responses to Burma in ‘Off the Beaten Path’ Travel Top 10

  1. striking that a country in war with its northern state (kachin) inhabitants has become a popular travel spot. striking that a country that uses phosphorus to crack down copper mine protests has become a popular travel spot. striking that a country utterly contaminated with landmines (and new mines still being laid) has become a popular travel spot. striking that a country where the majority of its territory is still restricted for indepenent travelers has become a popular travel spot. striking that a country that ranks in the top 5 of most corrupt countries has become a popular travel spot. striking that a country that deliberately refused aid to 100’000’s of (mainly Karen) villagers after the 2008 Nargis disaster has become a popular travel spot. striking that a country where forced labor, rape, torture and arbitrary killing by the army is still daily business has become a popular travel spot. amazing myanmar! amazing ignorant travelers!

  2. The good time.

    Here, in the
    present, while
    the sound of
    a new day
    appears in the
    sky with a
    delicate glimmer.

    Francesco Sinibaldi

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