Myanmar, officially the Republic of the Union of Myanmar is a country in South East Asia. Myanmar lies on the Bay of Bengal and Andaman Sea coast and is boarder on the west by Bangladesh and India, on the north and northwest by China, on the east and southeast by Thailand and Laos and on the south by Andaman Sea. It is located between latitudes 09° 32N and 28° 31N and longitudes 92° 10E and 101° 11E. The population of Myanmar is more than 60 million people, the second largest city in South East Asia countries.The standard time zone of Myanmar is UTC/GMT +6:30 hours.
The area of country is 677,000 square kilometres (261,228 square miles) and east to west is 936 kilometres (581 miles) and north to south is 2051 kilometres (1,275 miles). Myanmar is a land of hills and valleys and is rimmed in the north, east and west by mountain ranges forming a giant horseshoe. Enclosed within the mountaion barriers are the flat lands of Ayeyarwaddy, Chindwin and Sittaung River valleys where most of the country’s agricultural land and population are concentrated. AyarwaddyRiver flows from north to south through Myanmar. It is the country’s largest river and most important commercial waterway. Ayarwaddy River is originating from the confluence of Maykha and Malikha rivers. The highest mountain in Myanmar is Mount Khakaborazi (5881 meters) in Kachin State which is location at the north of Myanmar.
The earliest inhabitants of recorded history were the Pyu who entered the Ayarwaddy valley from Yunnan. There are three Myanmar Empires. The first empire founded by King Anawrahta of Bagan Dynasty (1044–1287 AD), the second empire founded by King Bayinnaung of the Taungoo Dynasty (1510–1752 AD) and the third empire founded by King Alaungpaya of the Konbaung Dynasty (1752-885 AD). These three Kings are well-known in Myanmar history for their intelligence, bravery and leadership skills to the people. In 1885, Myanmar fell under British rule. The last King of Myanmar is King Thibaw of Konbaung dynasty. British ruled Myanmar until independence on 4th of July 1948. The unforgettable person for Myanmar people is General Aung San who tried to get the independence from British until he passed away and also he was the founder of Myanmar Army.
There are over one hundred ethnic groups in Myanmar but there are mainly 8 different groups. The main people of Myanmar are called Myanmar or Bamar and there are also seven main races of Myanmar. They are Kachin, Kayah, Kayin, Cjin, Mon, Rakhine and Shan. Some of the smaller ethnic groups are Lisu, Akha, Padaung, Palaung, Rawang, Salone and Naga. Some of the minorities ethnic are living in the hidden area.
There are various kinds of religious in Myanmar, such as Buddhism, Christianity, Islam, Hinduism and Spiritualism and others. Most of the people in Myanmar are Buddhism.
Myanmar, the mother tongue of Bamar. It is also used to write Pali which is the sacred language of Theravada Buddhism. There are several ethnic minority languages, including Shan, Mon, Rakhine, Kachin, Kayah and several Karen dialects and etc. Myanmar is the official language and English is widely spoken. Some of the remote area in Myanmar speak their traditional languages and also speak Myanmar language.All of the school lectures books are published by Myanmar Language.
Flora and Fauna
Myanmar is endowed with a rich diversity of habitat types arising largely from its unusual ecological diversity. It is home to nearly 300 known mammal species, 300 reptiles and about 100 bird’s species and a haven for about 7,000 species of plant life. Myanmar considers such a rich pool of bio diversity as an important national asset. Now the Government has drawn up strict regulations to protect its biological resources and wild life.
Myanmar is rich in natural resources and produces such as rubies, sapphires, pearls and jade. About 90% of the world’s rubies come from the country because Myanmar rubies are purity and hue.The other national resources are petroleum, timber, tin, antimony, zinc, copper, tungsten, lead, coal, marble, limestone, gems, oil and gas.
Internet services are widely available in most of the cities around Myanmar.
There are no international roaming services in Myanmar. You cannot use your mobile phone in Myanmar but you can buy cheapest phone sim cards in Myanmar. It cost $2 per sim card. You can use that sim card around in Myanmar.
Credit cards can use only some 3, 4 or 5 Stars Hotels. Master Card and Visa Card increasingly accepted in some stores. Bringing the cash is the better than using the credit cards.
The climate of Myanmar is tropical monsoon type such as cloudy, rainy and hot. There are three seasons in Myanmar, summer season is from March to May, Rainy season is from June to October and Winter season is from November to February. In summer, it is hot and humid. Rainfall is scant in both summer and winter.
Myanmar is a Land of Festivals: a festival for every month of the year. Most festivals are cultural and religious. Majority are nation-wide celebrated while a few are distinctly regional. The origin of the Myanmar calendar is not clear. But it was revised several times by different kings. It consists of 12 lunar months. The difference between the lunar year and solar year is made up for by the addition of an extra month to the lunar calendar every few years. Myanmar year begins in mid-April and ends in mid-March. The date of the festivals and special events usually fall on the full moon day of month.
There are twelve monthly Myanmar festivals-
|February||Festival of bonfire|
|March||Festival of sand pagodas|
|Apr||Thingyan (water festival)|
|May||Kason(banyan tree watering ceremony)|
|June||Nadaw – Festival of religious examination|
|July||Waso (Festival of ordination of monks)|
|August||festival of giving religious charity by lot|
|October||Thadingyut (festival of lights)|
|November||Tazaungdine (Kahtein festival – offering robes to Buddhist monks)|
Myanmar economy suffered extensive damage in last 5 decades and some sectors of its economy have not fully recovered yet. More than half of the population works in agriculture and forestry. The main production of Myanmar is rice and mostly exposed to Asia countries. The country main trade partners are Thailand, China, Singapore and India. The currency of Myanmar is Kyats.
“MIN GA LA BA” is the lovely traditional greeting way of Myanmar can be used to greet anyone at anytime of the day during your visit. Another Myanmar word you may need to know is “KYAY ZU TIN BAR TAL” means “Thank you“.
The infrastructure in Myanmar is now more developed now a day, so travel to Myanmar is no longer an adventurous journey. Myanmar is one of the safest tour destinations in Asia opening her doors and stretching out her hands welcoming travelers around the world to visit Myanmar.