Aung San Suu Kyi, the country opens the door to tourism. Is Myanmar ready to bloom?
Yangon, Bagan, and Mandalay. Although not long ago heard, three places become a favorite tourist destination in Myanmar. Local governments seem optimistic traveler incursion into the country to welcome the first isolated it. Addressed a variety of infrastructure, accommodation and transport, reproduction, and the Kyat currency changed to U.S. Dollar.
in 2011 and around 340 thousand foreign tourists go to Burma. This year, the local government to raise its target by 30% to 500 thousand tourists. It is considered possible by many, given the local Tourism Office launched an electronic visa that allows entry of foreign tourists.
But, there is some concern behind this traveler incursion. In the December 2011 alone, approximately 48 thousand foreign tourists go to Yangon, the capital of Myanmar. Until now, the city had only 187 hotels and guesthouses. Even in places like Bagan and Mandalay tourist hotel is less than that amount.
The question is whether accommodation in Myanmar is sufficient for the tourists? What about the isolated communities now accept traveler incursion?
Some travel agencies destination deflect from Yangon to Bagan or Mandalay, where hotel rooms are still available. Both places, plus the Irrawaddy, may enter without any permission. But at some point you have to include a license that is usually processed within 5-7 days.
In addition to fears of a conflict between the military and ethnic minorities, it is also caused by the circulation of marijuana is widespread in Myanmar. In fact, many tourists expect more. They want to see the unspoiled beaches, green mountains stretching, and of course also the history of cultural tourism.
In fact, injection of dollars into the country not only a positive fruition. The number of incoming tourists are feared to have a negative impact on the environment, culture, and social life.
“After the Nargis cyclone disaster, many women who came to Yangon to find a job. But, they were instead forced into the sex industry,” said Aung Myo Min, executive director of Human Rights Education Institute of Burma.
In fact, during Visit Myanmar Year 1996 last year, Bagan is considered a holy city even destroyed by the military junta.
“They painted the building without paying attention to sustainability. Kicking the local villagers so that a direct impact on human rights abuses,” said Aung Myo Min.
But, though many doubt the Myanmar government’s intention to reopen the tourism sector, there are many signs that indicate optimism on the future of this country. Hotel with star rating will begin to be introduced. Public transport will be addressed. Foreign investors will soon enter. Some of the hotel zone will be developed in Nay Pyi Taw, Mandalay, Bagan, as well as several areas including the Myeik Archipelago in the southern and mountain snow to the north.
Also recently, the President of Myanmar Thein Sein stressed the elimination of forced labor in the country. Visit of British Prime Minister, David Cameron, on Friday (13/4) and is the first time since Myanmar’s military occupation. Cameron greeted by Thein Sein, who called the visit a “historic moment for Myanmar.”
While the government tried to deal with the new popularity in the country, natural and cultural wealth of Myanmar is still not perfect bloom. Many things are hidden behind the beautiful sunset reflected off the golden temples of Bagan. We still have much of a stretch of untouched forest that stretched when viewed from the top of Mount Popa. There are many noble traditions that have dived at once honored as Myanmar’s rich culture.
Responsible tourism considered to be the only way to Myanmar visited the beauty without damaging the value of local wisdom. One way is to contribute positively to the conservation of natural and cultural heritage. In addition, the Responsible Travel also increase revenues in the respective economies, and thus promote the welfare of local residents.