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Top 3 Reasons to travel to Myanmar (Burma)

View of magnificent Bagan temples form a hot air ballonn at sunrise
View of magnificent Bagan temples form a hot air ballonn at sunrise
Penny Chuang

Myanmar is spectacular. While many countries can say they are spectacular, here are the top 5 reasons why you should visit Myanmar asap. The food is cheap and delicious -- especially at the night markets. The people are extremely friendly and it's safe to travel solo.

1. Bagan - Perhaps even more breathtaking than Angkor Wat. During the Kingdom of Pagan's height between the 11th and 13th centuries, over 10,000 Buddhist temples, pagodas and monasteries were constructed in the city. Over 2200 temples and pagodas still survive to the present day. It's a splurge, but a balloon ride at sunrise gently floating over the temples provides an unforgettable experience of a lifetime. Each temple is different, with it's own fascinating stories (the kind who was placed under house arrest to erotic art.)

2. Inle Lake - The second largest lake in Myanmar, it's famous for the fishermen who row and steer their boat by standing at the stern on one leg and wrapping the other leg around the oar. It's also known for the five day market where the hill people rotate between 5 different locations over a 5 day period to sell and buy produce and other items. Different "towns" around the lakes have different specialties such as weaving, pottery, and handmade goods. Do not miss having a meal with a meal with a local family in their floating homes. The food is authentic, delicious, and it's great to see how they live.

3. Yangon Circle Line - Take the local commuter train on a 28.5 mile, 39-station loop around satellite towns and suburban areas to the city. It's fascinating to see how the farmers transport their goods and the cacophony of locals going about their daily lives. Vendors jump on and off different stops to sell an array of food and products that are carried on their heads.