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

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

Have you already finished your lunch (dinner)?

If you ever have an experience of visiting a Burmese friend’s house in Myanmar, you will remember that you had been asked a particular question. “Have you already had your lunch/dinner?” is the question that we Burmese always ask our visitors whenever they happen to visit us at meal time. This is not because we are inquisitive of our visitors. This is a simple gesture of good will. We Burmese believe that it is rude to have your lunch/dinner alone while there is a visitor. We read more

Myanmar Etiquette – General Rules

Myanmar is a country of people with deep rooted custom and religion. For a westerner visiting Myanmar, there are a number of things that they need to observe. Some of the Myanmar etiquette rules may be strange for westerners. However, if you follow some simple rules, your stay in Myanmar will be happier. Myanmar (Burmese) people are very friendly and helpful, especially towards visitors. Respecting Myanmar (Burmese) culture, custom and etiquette rules will gain respect and friendship from read more