What inspired you to go to Myanmar?
Intrigue. Burma- “A mysterious Southeast Asian land now open for exploration and adventure.” The curiosity for a country that had just recently opened its borders to foreigners meant it was time to go.  What does a place look like that has only been mildly touched by Westerners and slightly tainted by the tourism dollar?  With so much ridicule of the Burmese government, how did the country stand?  What did the people look like?  What did they eat?  I wanted so badly to unfold the Myanmar mystery that I was nearly compelled to go. 
How did you plan your trip?
I used the web and word of mouth to organize my trip.  From the web, I sorted out my basic itinerary, the simple visa process, and my entry and exit flights.  Once on the road, I used word of mouth, and local recommendations to get around and explore.  Myanmar is a new place to travel to and although there are books written, as the tourism industry ramps up, things change rapidly and books quickly grow into historical references.  However, I did use a borrowed Lonely Planet for a few quick tips.
What items should you never leave home without when traveling to Myanmar?
Clothing, camera, and cleaning cloths.  The weather in Myanmar was surprisingly widespread with extreme heat and somewhat chilly mornings.  You will want to be able to quickly layer on to heat up or strip down to cool off.  Linen or convertible long pants are a must for temperature control while entering Myanmar Buddhist temples.  I would also highly recommend flip-flops for their ease of taking them on and off.  A camera is a necessity to capture all that is around you – old, new, and moving.  Cleaning cloths for both yourself and your camera should not be left behind.  The cities and countryside are quite dusty which means wiping off yourself to refresh or cleaning your camera will be done frequently.
May 2013