There is some controversy on whether or not it is “ethical” to visit Burma because of the human rights abuses its army rulers commit on the population (think Orwell’s 1984 without the technology). However its citizens are some of the friendliest people I have met during my travels! It is the only country I visited where I did not feel worried about being robbed or cheated. It is also the least developed and poorest country I visited.

I celebrated the Buddhist New Year in Mandalay and this was a lot of fun. The New Year is 4 days long in mid-April and is celebrated by throwing water (to cleanse) over everyone. It’s a party that takes over the whole country- music, dancing, drinking. Other Buddhist countries in the region also celebrate the New Year in a similar way – so if you have an opportunity to travel during this time – you’re in for a (very wet) treat.


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