Ayeyawady Delta becomes major tourism hub

A panoramic view on Ngwehsaung Beach, nearly 48 km west of Pathein, with visitors. Photo: MoHT
A panoramic view on Ngwehsaung Beach, nearly 48 km west of Pathein, with visitors. Photo: MoHT

Nay Pyi Taw, 9 March — Known for its long sandy beaches, the Ayeyawady Delta has become one of Myanmar’s major tourist destinations.
In addition to its traditional Pathein umbrella and clay pot painting workshops, the region lining the Bay of Bengal is also renowned for the quality of its rice.
Ngwehsaung (Silver Beach), the newest beach resort of Myanmar, is located nearly 48 kilometres west of Pathein, the capital city of the region. Beautiful sunsets over the Bay of Bengal can be viewed from Lover’s Island, accessible by walking along the 4.5-mile beach.
Government and private sector development along Ngwehsaung beach has been aimed at attracting more local and foreign visitors, while also generating income for local people.
Among the recreational activities on the beach, visitors can take a ride on a horse or on a bullock cart, while local seafood is also readily available.
Visitors can also ride elephants at an elephant camp in the forest to the east of the beach. Unspoiled beach, underwater creatures and Padaung Village make Ngwehsaung a unique destination with huge potential for tourism development.
A three-day or two-night trip to Ngwehsaung is enough for visitors to look around and get a taste of nearby rural life. China, France, Germany, the United States and the United Kingdom accounted for the largest number of international visitors in 2014.
Two-mile long Chaungtha is the second beach resort of the Ayeyawady region. It is located 35 miles west of Pathein, some five hours’ drive from Yangon. Chaungtha can be literally translated as Pleasant Stream in Myanmar language and it is relatively more affordable than Ngwehsaung and Ngapali beaches. Peak season for visitors to Chaungtha is from October to April.
The pagoda known as Myat Maw Tin or Maw Tin Zun is also a destination for visitors. The pagoda festival is held for one month near the beach, with accommodation very comfortable for both local and foreign guests.
The Ministry of Hotels and Tourism has created its Master Plan, outlining its expectation for promotion of tourism industry from a baseline of US$534 million in 2012 to $10.8 billion by 2020.—GNLM

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