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Published on : Tuesday, July 25, 2017
With the introduction of the Green Season campaign for Myanmar’s low-traffic tourist season beginning in April, foreign visitors to the country has increased. Trips to the Buddhist archaeological site Bagan persist all year round.
Tourism in 2017 has increased 10 percent compared to the first six months of 2016.
The high season for tourism in Myanmar runs from October to March; hence, industry stakeholders have been pushing for greater numbers of visitors during the annual monsoon—which has been dubbed the “green season”—from late April to mid October to fill gaps in arrivals.
The best places to go during this season are Bagan and Mandalay in central Myanmar and Inle Lake in Nyaung Shwe (Yawnghwe) Township in southern Shan State, which receives less rainfall than Yangon.
According to Daw May Myat Mon Win, the deputy chairperson of the MTF, “The tourist arrivals in rainy [monsoon] season tend to be lower. It was because of a long-term perception among the tourists that they could not visit Myanmar in the monsoon season. Actually, the best time to visit Bagan is in the monsoon season, as it is more beautiful and green.”
Tourists mostly come from particular countries like Thailand, China, Singapore, France, Germany, Switzerland and India. Thai tourists make up the largest number of visitors, followed by the Chinese.
Daw May Myat Mon Win said that she is positive about the future of Myanmar tourism, as they are promoting travel within the country for both foreign and domestic visitors.
In Bagan, there are also health services available for tourists, provided by the Myanmar Tourist Healthcare Association (MTHA), for outreach support and primary and emergency healthcare.
Myanmar will also develop a package tour between Cambodia’s Angkor Wat and Myanmar’s Bagan later this year under the slogan: “Angkor-Bagan: two ancient capitals, one destination.”
Myanmar currently has 21 ecotourism sites, which include 16 existing sites and a handful of underdeveloped ones, as well as 13 community-based tourism projects in Sagaing, Mandalay, Magwe, and Yangon regions and Shan, Karenni and Kachin states. Marine tourism is also available on the Myeik archipelago. Myanmar will open its new ecotourism site, near Oaktwin and Pauk Khaung townships, in the Bago Yoma forest at the end of July.