Sustainable Tourism in Myanmar
Although it may seem complex sustainable tourism in Myanmar is more than ever an important subject to take into account before you travel there.
The history of the country and recent events could lead you to ask yourself if it is ethical to visit Myanmar.
As the country has open it’s doors to international visitors, many locals have built businesses to welcome tourists. And as such, stopping to visit the country would be harmful to those communities.
On Holiable, we’ll help you find eco-friendly accommodation, sustainable restaurants or ethical tourism attractions, to prepare your travels in Myanmar.
Eco-friendly travel advice for you trip to Myanmar
Myanmar regions are not all open to international travellers, and the first and only advice we will give you is to research in depth on whatever region you will visit or are willing to visit
Whether you are looking for a lodging, an activity or a restaurant, our second advice would be that you encourage locally owned businesses. Ideally if you have to book a lodging before you go, make sure that the accommodation is run by the local population, and not a state-owned lodging
Be aware of the cultural differences and the etiquette: Myanmar is quite conservative.
- Always cover knees and shoulders. That’s not only true for temples, take it into account everywhere
- Avoid politics discussions with the people you meet. You most probably would make the person in front of you uncomfortable. If someone does start a conversation on the subject, do listen
- Always ask permission to take a picture of someone. You will notice, that many young people, will ask you if they can take pictures of you. Feel free to say no, but don’t forget to smile
Our advice to book eco-friendly lodging in Myanmar
- Always prefer direct booking to participate in sustainable, fair tourism practices
- Make sure you are booking a lodging run by the local community and not an accommodation owned by the government
- Check the sustainable principles of the accomodation you are staying at and make sure you respect them during your stay
- Be aware that all accommodations will pay government taxes
Enjoying Myanmar responsibly
- Make sure to get information on the climate of the region you are visiting at the time of your travels
- Make sure the “visit to a local tribe” in your tours program is authentic. Some tours, especially on inle lake, stop to show you “long neck ladies” from the Kayan tribe. Often times, this is just faked to attract tourists and leads to exploitation
- Laws change often here, but in many regions, international travellers cannot ride a scooter (except electric scooter bikes in Bagan) or a car. Do your research before going
- Do not encourage begging and especially from Children that you may encounter in many temples in Bagan.