Myanmar (Burma) by Singapore Travel Agents
Myanmar is a country in Southeast Asia, formerly known as Burma. Myanmar is often said to be the most profoundly Buddhist country. 90% of this 48 million people are Burmese Buddhist. As such, we can find lots of historically rich temples and pagodas throughout Myanmar.
When King Alaungpaya conquered the small town of Dagon in 1755, he renamed it Yangon, meaning 'the end of strife'. The city was annexed by the British in 1851, who - due to a complete inability to pay attention when being told something - changed its name to Rangoon. It was expanded under the planning expertise of Lieutenant Fraser, the British officer credited with the design of Singapore. A pleasant mix of decaying colonial buildings and tree-shaded streets, with its Buddhist temples, open-air markets, shady parks and beautiful lakes, Yangon has been called the "Garden City of the East". With a population close to five million, the city covers an area of about 500 square km, it is surrounded on 3 sides by water and to the north it is on the foot hill of the Bago Yoma.
In and around Yangon
Shwedagon Pagoda - Reputedly over 2500 years old and build on the scared Singuttara Hill, legend has it that the original stupa was constructed to enshrine eight hairs of the Buddha. Over the years it has been rebuilt many times until it now towers is 100 metres over the city. It is plated with over 30 tons of solid gold - 8688 gold slabs, its tip is studded with 5448 diamonds and over 2000 rubies. The base is surrounded by a fascinating assortment of temples, shrines, statues and pavilions.
People's Square and People's Park - Set in over 130 acres of land between Shwedagon Pagoda and the parliament building of Pyithu Hluttaw (parliament). The park also contains a museum with life-size models of different national races in national dress.
Martyrs' Mausoleum - On a hill overlooking the city, close to the Shwedagon, this memorial is dedicated to Bogyoke Aung San - who played a key role in securing independence from the British. He was assassinated along with fellow cabinet members in 1947.
National Museum - Exhibits include the Lion Throne of King Thibaw, the country's last monarch, 19th century Royal Regalia, a collection of gem studded arms, swords, jewellery, paintings, and musical instruments.
Hlawga Wildlife Park - Home to over 70 kinds of herbivorous animals and 90 species of birds, the park covers 1,650 acres. Flocks of migratory birds also frequently visit the park. About 45 minutes from the city, the park also offers elephant rides, boating and fishing.
Outside of Yangon
The Ayeyarwady Delta lies west of Yangon. The Ayeyarwady River runs for 1,200 kilometers from upper Myanmar to the Andaman Sea. The main river dispersed into may smaller river threads and into even smaller canals, which forms the Ayeyarwady Delta. Because of its rich silts deposited, there are many rice cultivating villages and fish farms.
Mandalay - The modern centre of Buddhism and Myanmar arts, the old royal city of Mandalay, 670km north of Yangon, is also the home of traditional artisans - including wood and stone carvers, silversmiths and weavers - and for the production of gold leaf. The former capital, prior to British rule, and the second largest city in the country, it takes its name from the nearby 240-metre Mandalay Hill, and is rich in monasteries and pagodas.
Visitor information websites on Myanmar
MYANMAR TOURISM PROMOTION BOARD
To provide information and create awareness, MMC produced collaterals such as, "Mystical Myanmar" Magazine; "Myanmar the Golden Land" DVD Documentary; Maps; Postcards; Flyers; and "Discover Yangon" book providing in depth information on Yangon.
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Prices updated on 2014-04-21