Although it is now well and truly open to tourism, Myanmar remains a mysterious destination. While the former capital Yangon and sites such as Bagan, with its collection of temples, pagodas and stupas, are increasingly well known to visitors, large swathes of the country – the largest in mainland southeast Asia – are barely charted territory for most.
This sense of venturing into the unknown is vividly documented in the book Beyond the Chindwin, Bernard Fergusson’s classic account of the Wingate Expedition where a British India special force led by charismatic military man Orde Wingate marched through difficult terrain in order to operate behind Japanese lines. Conditions in Myanmar are, of course, more favourable to foreigners nowadays. Epic hikes into the unknown are, however, still possible.
This unforgettable journey carves through Myanmar taking in a range of highlights including remote villages, idyllic landscapes and the fascinating ruins of Mrauk-U, the one-time capital [of Burma] and once one of the richest cities in Asia.
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