Traveling to Burma in April

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Dec 15th, 2010, 01:47 PM
  #1
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Traveling to Burma in April

Hi everybody!

I'm considering making a trip to Burma in April (one of the hottest months).

I would like to hear an opinion from somebody who has traveled in April in Burma. Is it really so hot? Is it possible to use most of the day for going around the places or it is possible just early in the morning and late in the afternoon?

Thanks
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Dec 15th, 2010, 02:46 PM
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I've not been to Burma in April, but frankly, I wouldn't want to be there in April. We were there in November when it is supposedly cooler, but Yangon was intolerably hot.

I travel to SE Asia annually. I rarely find that the heat gets to me because I'm well practiced at managing it - stay in the shade, get breaks in an air-conditioned place (car, restaurant, hotel) drink lots of water, use sunscreen and wear a hat, etc.

One of the things that makes Burma difficult in the heat is that air-conditioned spaces are hard to come by. We rode in no vehicles with working air conditioning, many restaurants are not air conditioned, and most of the places you'll want to see are outside (in the hot sun).

I loved Burma and certainly will return, but there is no way I'd go in April.
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Dec 18th, 2010, 02:23 PM
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Thanks for your answer Kathie.

For the moment April is my only possibility. Do you think the weather in Cambodia and Laos will be better in April (I mean not so hot and no rain)? Would it be better to go there?
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Dec 18th, 2010, 02:48 PM
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All of that area will be hot, hot, hot. If it is your only option, go, but be prepared for real heat.
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Dec 18th, 2010, 03:07 PM
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My daughter lives in Siem Reap (Cambodia) and says that April is the hottest month. Rain should not be an issue. I normally visit in July at the start of the wet season and it normally only rains for an hour or so, albeit heavily. While it is still hot then, I use a tuk tuk all the time and its fine. (I don't like the abrupt changes of temperature when going from a heavily air conditioned car to the temples and back again.)

Not sure how the temperature is in northern Laos. It may be cooler there. I did not bother with air con until I got down to Vientiane, once again that was in July. There is a internet site that gives you average temperatures at various parts of the year. I've seen mention of it on here.
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Dec 18th, 2010, 05:13 PM
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www.weatherbase.com
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Jan 15th, 2011, 12:54 PM
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It is very uncomfortable in April, i shall be there myself for a few days. One tip do not be tempted to close the windows in your taxi and put the air/con on full. Most of these cars are almost 20 years old, there air con has never been cleaned and this is the quickest way to get a nasty chest infection.
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Jan 17th, 2011, 07:50 AM
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I believe April is the month of the annual water festival, or at least that is my name for it. I grew up in Rangoon and my birthday is in April and I remember it being so hot that they have a day when people just throw water on each other all day....it is so much fun. You can just be walking down the street and just expect to get hosed. There is also a parade where everyone comes prepared with water to squirt at everyone else.

Have a great time, Clifton! first trip to Burma? The food is amazing.
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Jan 17th, 2011, 10:11 AM
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Yes, in Burma, Thailand, Cambodia and Laos, April is the month of Songkran, often referred to as the water festival.

Alas! I found the food to be disappointing... the least interesting part of the trip.
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Jan 17th, 2011, 06:35 PM
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Clifftop you were lucky to find a taxi with A/C in Yangon! Some of the taxis we rode on had holes, from rust, in the floor!

Yes the "New Year" festival, or "Songkran" in Thailand, will be celebrated from around the 12th April until the 17th. I am not sure where the major celebration in Myanmar will be held but certain city might block off roads for revelers to let loose.
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Mar 13th, 2014, 03:34 AM
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Got the same idea als Svulka, the time after Easter. As I am travelling alone I am looking for an international travel group. Does anybody know a local agent who offers group travels or one from anywhere. I do not like the sophisticated way of travel, love to be close to the people and have not high demands
Lasabana
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Mar 13th, 2014, 04:38 AM
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Air-conditioned taxis in Burma are all government owned. Use the old ones, and put your money into the pockets of local people.

I don't think it matters weather-wise too much what time of year you travel to SE Asia, there's always pro and cons, they just change by the season.

It was February when we went to Burma. It never rained once, and was very hot. But the farmers were burning the fields, and so decent views were always obscured by a blue/grey mist.
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Mar 13th, 2014, 11:31 AM
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Lasabana, I do not recommend a group tour of Burma. You will pay more, be herded to easy "'approved" places, etc. Going on your own is easy, especially if you use an agent to book things for you. You can ask for guides any place you want them, but you really don't need a guide most places.

I'm not sure what LancasterLad is talking about "government-owned taxis" He said he was there in 2010. I was there in both 2009 and 2011. Never saw a "government-owned taxi" or any taxi with working air-conditioning.

If you get a car and driver tom a travel agency, they will have a car with working a/c.
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Mar 13th, 2014, 11:48 PM
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Kathie.
A government owned 'anything' in Myanmar isn't going to advertise the fact that it's government owned!

It's all part of the trip planning to find out which hotels, restaurants, tour companies, taxis etc are owned by the Myanmar government. Myanmar Airways is owned by the government too. Find out what's what, and try and avoid anything government owned, and put your money into the hands of honest local people.
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Mar 14th, 2014, 12:19 AM
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Parami is the name of the government owned taxi company...

http://www.mmtimes.com/2010/news/514/n51403.html

Use Golden Harp if you can...

http://www.tourismtransparency.org/s...arp%20Taxi.pdf

Or Golden Swallow from Yangon airport to your hotel.
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Mar 14th, 2014, 12:24 AM
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I got back today 14/3/2014 from Myanmar.
Yangon was very hot, and everything is dusty, as it hasn't rained since last October.
To make matters worse, nearly everywhere you sit is on a plastic chair (unless you're doing luxury) and the Burmese seem to think a standing person is untidy. They will almost insist that you take a seat.
It was hot everywhere I went, including the hill town of Pyin Oo Lwin where the British went to escape the heat in colonial times.

I live in a sub tropical climate, so am perhaps more acclimatised than someone from a cooler climate like much of North America. Still found it very hot. If you can put up with constant sweating, and be prepared to shower often and change clothes, you will be fine.

Most taxis in Yangon and Mandalay don't use the aircon (if they have it) but when you're moving there is a breeze. That doesn't help when stopped in traffic, which happens a lot.

Maybe the very north of Laos, with elevation, may be cooler.
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Mar 14th, 2014, 11:20 AM
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Lancasterlad, you are naive, indeed, if you think I didn't do years of research before my first trip to Burma.

My point was that I didn't see any taxis with working a/c in Yangon at all.

Please don't make assumptions about the people here. Read their posts, perhaps some of their reports, get to know us rather than immediately judging us.
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Mar 14th, 2014, 02:09 PM
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Kathie.
As a newbie to this forum, I think I'm the one being judged.
Calling me naive is a bit of an insult as you don't know me.
I've been travelling for a very long time, as a civilian, a member of the UK Armed Services, and as UK Civil Service 'Mandarin'.
And as I prefer to travel on a shoestring I see a heck of a lot, and from all angles.
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Mar 14th, 2014, 04:01 PM
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LancasterLad, people here won't tell you how to travel - shoestring or luxe - but they will likewise expect the same respect for their choices.
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