What to pack to Myanmar
Knowing what to bring and what to leave at home will not only soothe away a lot of anxiety, it will also keep you ready to go and your bag light.
Knowing what to bring and what to leave at home will not only soothe away a lot of anxiety, it will also keep you ready to go and your bag light. Packing light is generally a good idea when hitting the road. Of course, every traveler has his own needs so consider your own comfort thresholds when packing your bag. So here are a few key considerations when packing for a trip to Myanmar.
- Myanmar can get quite hot and humid, which may encourage some Westerners to bring out their tanks and shorts. However, it is important to remember that Myanmar is a Buddhist country that is quite conservative when it comes to clothing. This is especially true when visiting temples. Men should also dress respectfully by wearing long pants that cover the knees. Women should pack clothing that will cover their shoulders, chests, and knees. Balancing modesty with the heat may be difficult, but dressing conservatively will show respect for local norms. If you can bear it, stay away from jeans. They absorb dirt (and odors), are bulky, and take days to air dry. Cotton and khaki are the way to go. The rainy season is from May through October, so bring an umbrella or raincoat if visiting during those months.
Please dress modestly to religious sites.
- Leave your jewelry at home.
- Myanmar is a high-risk Malaria country so make sure you take insect repellent with you. Forget about smelling nice. Perfume is not a good idea. Not only will you get so hot you won’t smell it but you’ll also a calling card for every mosquito in the area to take a bite of your perfumed flesh.
- Dehydration is a health risk in this part of the world, so always carry a bottle of water with you.
- Have a small first aid kit that fits neatly in your backpack in case of emergencies.
- There are virtually no ATMs in Myanmar and very few establishments accept credit cards. Bring perfectly pristine bills (preferably US$100 bills). Any bills with folds or creases will be rejected or exchanged at a lower rate. Putting bills between two pieces of cardboard or thin plastic will help keep them pristine and usable. Also, keeping your money close to your body in a money belt is a good idea to help keep your notes safe from theft.
- If you like taking pictures, make sure you bring enough memory cards and a spare battery. Sometimes it may not be possible to charge all your electricals if there is a limited power supply so bring a backup battery to keep you going. No hotels or hostels have safety deposit boxes – so please bare this in mind when taking technical equipment or expensive cameras. Unless you want to risk leaving them in your room you are forced to carry them with you all the time.
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Image sources: Internet