Bob Nelson Photography
Bob Nelson Photography Burma Bob Nelson Photography Burma Bob Nelson Photography Burma

Myanmar (Burma)

Myanmar In 2012 I had the pleasure of visiting Myanmar with my wife, Wendy, and another well traveled couple and later that same year I returned by myself to this fascinating country.

We concentrated on the main tourist attractions consisting of the bustling city of Yangon which has the highest number of colonial period building in South East Asia and the famous Pagodas of Bagan, one of the richest archaeological sites in South East Asia. We also visited Lake Inle where the fishermen row boats with one leg, while catching fish in unique pyramidal nets.

The most beautiful tomatoes I have ever tasted are grown on floating islands on Lake Inle and taken to Nyaung Shwe where most of these absolutely delicious tomatoes are shipped to Yangon. A visit to Pyin U Lwin gave us a taste of Colonial Hill Town Resorts.

After Mandalay we went South to Sitwe and Mrauk-Un where we saw ruins of the ancient Capital with ancient fascinating Pagodas and Temples. That trip was so enjoyable that I decided to return to Myanmar several months later by myself with my own driver/guide.

On this last trip I was able to focus on tribal photography in both the Eastern and Western States. In the Western State of Shan I photographed the ‘Long Necked’ tribe whose necks are elongated with large brass rings. On one of my treks I was taken to a small Akhu village where they are noted for black teeth. The teeth are blackened with burnt tree bark and I’m told that they never get tooth aches.

Leaving Mandalay we drove to the Chin Hills where we visited several tribes with tattoos. Each tribe tattoos faces and necks in distinctive pattern. The practice of tattooing is no longer allowed and only the elderly women now have these tattoos.

For me, some of the most memorable moments of my trip were trekking to remote wooden Monasteries and spending time with the friendly and hospitable Monks.Throughout my trip I found the Burmese people incredibly friendly and welcoming.Myanmar has a population of about 60 million with the largest city of Yangon having 4.5 million.

There are estimated to be 135 different ethnic groups with about 90% of the population practicing Buddhism. What makes this country so fascinating to explore is the contrast between its colonial history and its tribal diversity.

I hope when you are looking at this book that it may inspire you to travel to Myanmar.Once again, I have to express my sincere thanks and appreciation to Sandra Faye, my editor, who has put this book together.