heh folks, im from ireland and me and a few friends are hoping to drive across the border from india to myanmar and on to thai;land? any viewa or info for us? ive looked at some of the comments already and i agree that burma is the great unknow in the region but i think with a bit of determination it can be done. ive just read a comment that says there are no land crossings from thailand to myanmar but i know for certain this isnt true because i met several travellers in thailand last month who have done it. but from the indian side and with a vehicle im not so sure so any help wpould be much appreciated
As far as I know, it is still not possible to travel overland from India to Myanmar vv. Borders are closed, at least to foreigners.
There are however border crossing with Thailand, near Tachilek and in the southern tip of Myanmar. Check the regulations on crossing and visa before you want to cross these borders.
I agree with Utrecht. Thailand to Myanamr is not much of a problem, although sometimes they arbitrarily close the borders without giving any reason. From what I've been told, the India-Myanmar border is not open to foreigners; it is not even officially open; something to do with conflict.
Anyways, I would say that it's not very advisable to drive on your own. Outside of Yangon and Mandalay, English is not spoken, neither is it used for signages; even if you manage to enter Myanmar via India, unless you have someone who know the languages, you may not be able to find you way. Maps may not be reliable either. It would be worth noting also that the Burmese army usually resumes fighting in some of the ethnic states outside of the monsoon season. I would think that safety-wise, that's a big question mark.
What you're thinking of doing is really ambitious; there's only one person I know who made it across Myanmar via the Indian and the Thai borders; he did it by trekking with rebels for guides. Can't remember his name now, but he wrote a book. Good luck!
You might be able to sneak across the border at some point but taking your own vehicle is out of the question at this point. From what I hear the roads are almost impassable in that region and the military has regular checkpoints on those that are most often used. Fuel would be a big problem also, I was up in the Chin state about 4 months ago and most of the villages are fairly primitive with little or no electrical power and the only type of transportation were the buses that made weekly trips towards the major cities. I don't remember seeing one private car anywhere. If you can take a boat downriver its a great experience. I would also advise against entering illegaly as the government is coming down rather hard on this type of activity. It has to do with the groups on the Thai border sneaking across to do relief work and filming the activity of the army in that area. There is also a hefty fine for not having the right documents if you are picked up for any reason. My visa expired and was not renewed in time, even though I turned it in 3 months early for an extension and I had to pay a fine of $234 before they let me out of immigration. It was no problem getting back in but they do check closely to see if your papers are in order. We had visitors this past week and they took the bus up to Mandalay, 20 hours on the return trip, they had to take a whole day just to recover from the ride. If you can fit it in your budget, fly to the central cities and take short trips from there, it will save you so much time and you will not be nearly as tired when you arrive. I wouldn't miss the opportunity to vistit though, its like no place else.
It is not possible to cross India Myanmar border. Only entry point is in the state of Manipur ( Indian side). The state itself is disturbed and you need special permission to enter the state. You don't get a car rental there. If you sneak out illegally you land up in Burmese jail. Mind Myanmar Govt. is a military one and they are strict.