Before coming to Myanmar, I had no clue what to expect – many friends have told us how amazing the country is, but only upon stepping foot on its holy soil, visiting its thousands of pagodas, navigating its chaotic streets, and talking to the Burmese, did I understand how captivating this country is. From the shimmering Shwedagon Paya in Yangon to the stupa-studded landscapes of Bagan and the poetic water world of Inle Lake, Myanmar is a country so pristine, raw and untouched, it’s hard to believe that a country like that exists in today’s world.
The people too captured our hearts deeply: I lost count of the number of people who came up to us and said, “Thank you for coming to Myanmar. Welcome.” Whether it was the monk who chatted with me for hours on the train, or the taxi-driver who told us stories about Myanmar, they were the ones who made this place so special. Perhaps it’s because of years of isolation from the outside world (with the strict military regime and the ban of tourism), perhaps it’s the deep-rooted Burmese culture, Myanmar remains pure and untainted – for now. Here are some of Alberto’s best shots from around Myanmar, we hope the photos can bring you on the journey with us and hope they give you an idea of what we’re feeling.
The thousands of stupas that dot the landscapes of Bagan
The river banks of the Ayeryawaddy in Bagan
The stupa-studded hills of Sagainn, a quiet town near Mandalay where Burmese Buddhists come to meditate
Warm greetings from a boatful of monks in Inle Lake
A fisherman looks for the catch of the day in Inle Lake
A young boy gives me a nod of approval as I snap this shot from the train. He’s seen wearing chalk white Thanaka powder on his face, a commonly used beauty cream and sunscreen in Myanmar.
Double Buddha statues in the biggest stupa in Bagan
Playful children frolick in the waters of Inle Lake
A vermillion sunset against the mountains surrounding Inle Lake