Travel tips when visiting Burma

Welcome together with a smile is a common practice of Burmese people. However, there are some notices that you should know before starting trip to Burma. These travel tips below will help you have better experience in this country.

  1. When visiting the temple

Tourists should dress discreetly when visiting temples.
Tourists should dress discreetly when visiting temples.

Myanmar people follow religion strictly, therefore this is the most important travel tip that you must remember.

When visiting temples and other Buddhist religious grounds, tourists must walk barefoot. Do not wear hats, footwear, socks, not wearing sock pants, too thin T-shirts, too short skirts to temples. Some places do not allow women to approach the altar and directly incense.

Tourists need to find out the time and place to be photographed, so please get permission before taking photos.

Respecting monks and nuns (Burmese called Sangha) and the elderly and caring to children is a Burmese custom. Visitors should not shake hands to the monks but clasp your hand to greeting.

  1. How to say hello

You should respect when meeting people
You should respect when meeting people

Welcome together with a smile is a common practice of Burma people. The Burmese see the head as a place of respect, so other people can not touch others’ heads with their hands, even with lovely children, you should not rub their heads.

  1. Visit Burma house

Remember to remove shoes before coming house.
Remember to remove shoes before coming house.

According to the Myanmar customs, shoes should be removed before entering the house. One tip for you is that when given to the elderly, it is forbidden to use the right hand because the right hand is considered unclean.

When visiting rural, mountainous villages, visitors should first seek out and show respect for local traditions and customs.

  1. Eating habits in Burma

A meal of Burma people
A meal of Burma people

Burmese eat only two meals a day at 9am and 5pm with snack lunch. People often have vegetables, shrimp and fish for meal. They said that if they lack fish and shrimp, they do not eat appetite. Burma people do not eat rice with chopsticks. In front of each person is a basin, before eating they have to wash their hands and then use hands to wrap the rice into gravy then eat with vegetables.

Burmese always eat with their right hand, in their view, their left hand doing daily hygiene work is not recommended for eating.

Buddhists often avoid beef and Muslims do not eat pork.

  1. Bring cash with you

Burma has very few ATM, so it is best to bring amount of cash when traveling here. And make sure your money is not crumpled, torn or has any strange traces, otherwise it will not be usable. Credit cards are currently only accepted at 5 star hotels and large restaurants.

  1. Create a “fake kiss” to call the beer

One special gesture to get attention from waitress.
One special gesture to get attention from waitress.

When attracting attention to service personnel, Myanmar people often kiss short two or three times. The sound of kiss is like when you call pet cat. This tip will help you quickly communicate with waitress instead of waiting long time in rush hours.

  1. Burmese men wear skirts

Traditional clothes of Burmese.
Traditional clothes of Burmese.

Burmese traditional costume is “longyi” skirt. Men wear taffy skirts in front, women fold up and suture on the side.

In particular, in the cities, the Burmese men only wore underwear under longyi skirts when traveling in the streets. In the countryside, underwear is less common for both men and women.

  1. Internet is no longer censored as before

Internet is limited in Myanmar
Internet is limited in Myanmar

The Internet has been popular in Burma since 2000 but its speed is slow and its price is very high. Previously, famous sites such as YouTube or Gmail were even banned in this country. Recently, however, the ban has been lifted.

Besides the expensive cost of using the Internet, cellphones are also rarely used here because service fees are too high. However, in June, the $ 15 SIM card was introduced for the SEA Games season to be held here in December 2013. However, only tourists and foreigners can use this sim.

  1. People with red teeth are not vampires

Eating betel nuts is an custom of the old people.
Eating betel nuts is an custom of the old people.

The tradition of eating betel nuts is so traditional that most of older Burmese people have red teeth. The betel here contains betel leaves and lime, but there also have some other flavors and a bit of tobacco. Western tourists here are even addicted after trying to chew betel nut of Burma.

  1. Myanmar people celebrate New Year in 4 days

Festival in the New Year of Myanmar
Festival in the New Year of Myanmar

The New Year (Thingyan) is a great holiday for Burmese. “Thingyan” is known as water splash festival, which usually takes place in April every year. On this day, everywhere, including banks, restaurants and shops are closed. The two largest New Year festivities are Yangon (30 km from Martaban Bay) and Mandalay City (716 km north of Yangon). During the festival, people often fall in water to wash away the bad luck and sins of the previous year and give birth to birds and fish on the last day of the festival

Burma is a percfect destination and so is Vietnam. Not too far from Burma, you can possibly take a flight and try our Halong bay tour from Hanoi!

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