We have left the gorgeous island of Tioman, Malaysia, and are now attempting to make our way to Myanmar. With only our lonely planet to guide us we are not exactly certain if entering by land is feasible (or more importantly worthwhile). We would fly for the right price, but would prefer the opportunity to see all that southeastern Myanmar has to offer. Has anyone survived the land trek from the southern border (or northern for that matter), and is it recommended? Any advice sent our way will be doubly rewarded with golden treasures.
[ Edit: Sorry, no promos please... ]
I have not been the Myanmar, but it seems you must fly into the country. Land crossings only allow a short stay and limited distance from the Thai border. Since Myanmar is a dictatorship, I would not break any of their rules.
I looks like Bengladesh Air has the cheapest airfare from BKK. Hope this helps.
I think you would have to fly. And transport away from the main cities are terrible - you would have to show yr passport, wait a few days for the red tape to be cleared etc for train travel.... And i would think theres a chance you would be refused entry on land borders.
From experience, flying in to Yangon then making the way to Mandalay with forays into SEn Myanmar was enjoyable - we took a bus to Bago and then the next day to Kyaiktiyo, went back to Yangon before leaving on another bus to Mandalay....
It is best to fly in to Yangon. They have just opened up the renovated international terminal and it is so much faster and easier than it was just a few months ago. I came back in a couple of weeks ago and it only took about 15 minutes and I was out of the airport and on my way back home. Land travel by public transport in Myanmar is iffy at best. Things are better than they were a year or so ago but it can still be a problem getting ticketed for train and bus travel if you don't have someone to help with the language barrier. It is super cheap if you do travel that way but you have to decide if the long and uncomfortable hours spent in travel is worth the savings in dollars. Domestic flights are fairly cheap and usualy dependable. If you want to see the surroundings of some of the larger cities, Mandalay, Yangon etc., simply hire a car and driver for the day and take off for some of the smaller villages withing a few hours drive. You do get a much better sense of the country when you do these little side trips. Do ask before you travel to a "nearby" village though since a 50 mile trip on some of the roads may take up to 3 hours of hard travel by car. There are plenty of good day trips out of Yangon, Bagan, Mandalay and the Inley lake areas. This is a good time to visit, not to hot yet, things are just beginning to come into full bloom and for the moment the government seems to be doing a lot of things to polish up thier image a bit. Enjoy your stay, it is a beautiful place.