A Visit to a Pagoda – Dos and Don’ts

Worshippers at Shwedagon

When visiting Myanmar, visiting a pagoda will be an integral part of your visit as there are hundreds of ancient pagodas in Myanmar, including Shwedagon, and the best way to observe Myanmar arts. Here are a few tips for you.


  • Always wear proper clothes that are
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Shin Pyu – Ordination ceremonary for Myanmar Buddhists

Myanmar Shin Pyu - Ordination Ceremony for Buddhist MonksShin Pyu is an essential and integral part in a life of a Burmese Buddhist male. “Shin Pyu” is a ceremony in which a young Buddhist male becomes a novice in the order of The Sangha.

For a Burmese Buddhist male, it is important for him to be a novice for a certain period in his life as this will enable him to gain merit which will enable him, in his future lives, to gain Nirvana (enlightenment). Gaining Nirvana is the ultimate goal for any Buddhist. By read more


Eight Days a Week

Myanmar days

According to Burmese astrology, there are eight days in a week. They are Sunday, Monday. Tuesday, Wednesday (till noon), Rahu (Wednesday afternoon till the next morning), Thursday, Friday and Saturday. Burmese people believe that the astrological day a person was born is a great determinant in his or her personality and life. For example, a person born on Monday would be jealous; on Tuesday. Honest; on Wednesday, short tempered but soon calm again; the trait being intensified on the so called read more

Burmese (Myanmar) Names

Unlike western names, there is no family name in Myanmar. Women keep their maiden names upon marriage, and children can have names which bear no relation to their parents’ names.

Burmese names are either one, two or three syllables. One syllable names (e.g. Ba, Mya, Hla) are no longer in used as they are so outdated although you can still find this name in some older people. Two syllable names (e.g. Zaw Moe, Khin Hla, Tin Oo, Tin Naing, Thet Wai) read more

Myanmar Etiquette – How to properly address a person in Myanmar

In Myanmar, if you want to be seen polite, you should be able to use proper title when you address somebody. Burmese use appropriate titles and pronouns when addressing each other. When you are talking to an elderly male, you should put “U” (pronounce Oo) in front of his name. Thus, Mr. Ba becomes U Ba. This is also true if the person you are addressing is a government official or somebody of high social status. When addressing an elderly read more

Myanmar Etiquette – Greetings in Myanmar

When you meet a friend in an English speaking country, you say “Hi”, or “How are you?”In Thailand, you say “Sawaddee”. In Myanmar, you usually say either “where are you going?” Quite strange, right?

In Myanmar, we don’t have an informal phrase or expression to be used as a greeting. The famous phrase “Mingalar Bar” is quite formal and nobody use it in the streets. It is only used in formal announcements on the airplanes! And it is not really Burmese. The expression was invented read more

Payae (Payel) Facial Tattoo

Chin Face Tattoo

People in Chin Hills used to have the custom of tattooing (Payae) the face of the women. Nobody is really sure how the custom became established, but a legend was that hundreds of years ago, Burmese kings and nobles used to come to Chin Hills and hunt for the beautiful Chin girls, as the fame of their beauty reached the court of Burma. To avoid their women being captured by the Burmese, they had no way but to destroy this beauty. This they done by tattooing the face of young girls.Although read more