I have always been captivated by the mystery of Myanmar – its alluring beauty, dramatic history, and ancient cultures combine to create the ideal destination for those looking for a path less travelled. As the country finally begins to open up its doors to the outside world, travelling to Myanmar now represents a wonderful opportunity to build relations with those who’ve been cut off from the outside world for too long and to contribute to the continuous development of independence. I simply cannot wait to witness the stupas of Bagan first hand, cross the magnificent Gokteik Viaduct, and meet some of the friendliest faces I’ll ever likely encounter!
Myanmar, as it is now known, had always appealed as an exotic destination filled with glistening temples, friendly people and dramatic scenery. My Great Uncle represented the Royal Welsh Battalion during World War 2 and often told tales about Burma so it had always intrigued me. I was lucky enough to travel there in December and spent Christmas day on Inle Lake eating spicy Shan noodles. We were warmly welcomed by friendly, smiley locals as we crossed over the remote southern Thai border and felt like we were the first discoverers. Cycling in the dark to see a spectacular sunrise over the skyline of temples with the hot air balloons rising up is an atmospheric sight that will stay with me forever.