The Irrawaddy is the crucial artery which connects Burma’s main cities, snakes through its glorious countryside and reaches as far as the border with China. Cruising along it is not only an incredibly leisurely way of getting from A to B but an enriching experience too. Just in case you needed convincing, we’ve compiled our top five reasons to cruise in Burma.
Once off limits to visitors, Myanmar has recently dusted off the cobwebs of its hidden past, opening its doors to reveal a country steeped in cultural splendour, natural wonder and historical intrigue. For us, Burma is the land of lotus flowers, horse drawn carts, traditional tea houses and an exquisitely leisurely pace of life; Burma is a land where a traditional way of life prevails. The landscape is a glittering exhibition of gilded pagodas, the culture is an intoxicating blend of influences from across Asia and its cities are abuzz with spiritualism.
Magnificent temples abound in Burma, dotting the horizons of its verdant landscapes up and down the country. From the temple studded lands of Bagan to the glittering pagodas of Yangon, the holy sites of Burma are simply mind boggling both in size and beauty. Whilst stupas are solid temples, said to house remains of Buddhas or monks, Pagodas are open to enter for worship. Having evolved from the shape of a stupa, the two often look similar yet their significance is marked by their history.
Aside from its stunning scenery, fascinating history and amazing culture, Burma is all about its people. They are some of the kindest and most compassionate people you will ever meet. One story that we can’t tell enough is that of the Green Hill Valley Elephant Camp in Burma. At Green Hill Valley, love and care for animals is at the very heart of everything they do. We interviewed Htun and Maw, founders of the camp, to give you an insight into their commitment to caring for these magnificent animals.
We have a selection of guidebooks to some of our most popular countries in Asia. Written by our specialists, they detail destination information, a wildlife guide, some suggested itineraries and plenty more to inspire your holiday. Fill in the form below and if you live in UK, your guidebook will arrive by post within the next couple of days. For those who live abroad, we will send this via a PDF to your email.
When to go to Burma
Burma’s climate is influenced by the tropical monsoon that visits the country every year. The cool dry season is the best time to visit Burma, which is between November to March, when the country sees its most visitors. The wet season begins in May and finishes around October, however the major tourist areas in Central Burma can all be visited year round.
The Dry Season - November to April
The best time to visit Burma is during the dry season from November to April. At this time the warm and sunny days are ideal for sightseeing throughout the country.
The temperatures start to rise in March and May to September is best avoided as this is the rainy season when sightseeing can become difficult.
The Wetter Season - May to October
The months at the start of the wet season are usually the hottest of the year when temperatures can reach 40 degrees Celsius. May to August are characterised by heavy downpour and the climate is hot and humid.
At the end of the rains, the cooler months arrive when at the foothills and in the highland areas, it is really cold especially at night.