October 11, 2012 |
It's a new era in Myanmar as the country opens up to political reforms - and to a growing number of tourists. Long isolated and little known to Westerners, the country once known as Burma offers a window on life in Asia before the advent of Starbucks and W hotels. Friendly Planet Travel offers a 13-day tour called Mystical Myanmar with airfare from Los Angeles for $3,299 per person -- and an extra $100 discount for those who book soon. The tour starts with a flight to the former capital Yangon via Taipei, Taiwan.
June 19, 2011 |
It's a sweltering afternoon, but crowds at the Yankin shopping center hardly notice, transfixed by the models parading along a makeshift runway in white boots, hot pants and short skirts. Myanmar's repressive regime may have a tight grip on power, but it's losing the fashion war. "Hemlines are changing a lot faster than the political system," said one Yangon fashionista, adding, "That was definitely off the record. " For decades, Myanmar, also known as Burma, has tried to keep its people isolated from the outside world and its dangerous ideas about freedom.
December 31, 2012 |
To end a year charged with change, Myanmar enjoyed yet another first: a public countdown to the New Year. Such gatherings were heavily restricted under the military government that once ruled Myanmar, also known as Burma . But as the country emerges from totalitarian rule, gradually embracing reforms until recently unthinkable, Myanmar celebrated the new year as never before. “This is very exciting. … We feel like we are in a different world,” university student Yu Thawda told the Associated Press at the Monday countdown.
March 6, 2011 |
As I sat on a high ledge of the 734-year-old Mingalarzedi Temple, looking out over the hundreds of ancient temples around Bagan, I wondered how long it would take a visitor to see them all. Archaeologists say there once were about 5,000 temples, but earthquakes, decay and long-ago looters have destroyed more than half of them. Still, that's a lot of temples to explore in this 16-square-mile archaeological treasure trove. We visited Myanmar in February 2010 and, yes, I did feel a twinge of guilt when booking the trip.
March 24, 2013 |
MANDALAY, Myanmar - At the height of Western sanctions against the repressive Yangon government, Myanmar air force pilots traveled to China's Shaanxi province in the mid-1990s for training on recently acquired A-5 fighter jets. Enthusiasm for the aircraft - and the nation's No. 1 patron - quickly faded, however, due to their unreliability. Former pilot Wunna Mar Jay recalls 20 crashes and numerous dead colleagues among those who used the Chinese version of the Soviet MIG-19. Most died in the cockpit, given a government policy at the time that families of those killed trying to eject received no death benefits.
April 15, 2013 |
Testing the waters for a revitalized Asian alliance Now through Saturday, April 20: Democracy activist Aung San Suu Kyi's visit to Japan this week is purportedly unofficial, but the Nobel Peace Prize laureate probably has more clout than any Myanmar government delegation in charting a course for repairing business and social ties between Tokyo and her homeland. Japan's investments in Myanmar after half a century of military dictatorship pale in comparison with the billions being pumped in by China, Thailand and India.
June 26, 2013 |
If an African safari, Peru's Machu Picchu or the temples of Myanmar have been on your bucket list, here's a sale to consider. Luxury outfitter Abercrombie & Kent is offering up to half off on small-group trips to Africa, Latin America, and Asia this fall and winter. The deal: Luxury Small Group Journeys , as the company calls them, feature top lodgings - whether that's a historic hotel in the city or at a wilderness camp - generally closed to larger groups. The accent is on a more personal, intimate experience with as few as two participants.
September 19, 2012 |
WASHINGTON - Myanmar's opposition leader, Aung San Suu Kyi, met privately with President Obama after accepting Congress' highest honor in an emotional ceremony Wednesday, signs of the stunning shift in U.S. relations with the onetime pariah Asian nation over the last year. The Obama administration not only welcomed the former political prisoner and Nobel laureate, but it offered a gesture of goodwill by easing sanctions against Myanmar's leaders, as Suu Kyi has urged since she arrived Monday on a 17-day U.S. tour, including a visit to Los Angeles.
November 13, 2010 |
Opposition leader and Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi was freed Saturday in Myanmar after years in detention as a huge crowd presented flowers and chanted "Long Live Suu Kyi. " Soldiers armed with rifles and tear gas launchers pushed aside the barbed-wire barriers blocking her street at 5:15 p.m., leading to a gleeful dash the final 100 yards to her gate. Twenty minutes later, the slight pro-democracy opposition figure known here simply as "the lady" popped her head over her red spiked fence to a roar from jubilant supporters.
August 6, 1997 |
It wasn't your everyday picnic. Instead of shorts and jeans, some of the women wore sarongs. Tables were covered with exotic Asian fabrics. And the food was even more exotic--chicken smothered in spices, noodle salad with mango dressing, jasmine rice flavored with coconut and served in an antique silver bowl from northern Thailand. Although the look and the flavors were tropical, the location was South Pasadena, the home of Molly Kellogg and her husband, landscape designer Mark Brownstein.