Representatives from Myanmar’s newest tourist region are keen to meet up with operators and agents who might be interested in featuring the region.
Myanmar Tourism Marketing (MTM) in partnership with the International Trade Centre (ITC) will officially launch Kayah State as the country’s newest destination at WTM London 2016.
Tourism in Myanmar has so far been concentrated on traditional highlights including the bustling capital of Yangon, the colonial era charm of Mandalay, the temples of Bagan and tranquil beauty of Inle Lake.
Recent political changes have stimulated tremendous interest from international visitors wishing to go beyond these highlights and discover new and authentic regions in Myanmar.
Kayah State is a recently opened destination in the east of Myanmar and since
2014 ITC – the joint agency of the World Trade Organization and the United Nations – has worked with the government of Myanmar to develop suitable cultural and ecotourism products, preparing local communities for the arrival of international visitors.
In 2015 Myanmar attracted more than five million international visitors and its recent responsible tourism policy has paved the way for the development of community tourism.
One of the aims of the policy is to ensure an equitable distribution of the benefits from tourism into new regions, encourage local entrepreneurship and involve local communities in innovative product development.
Closed for over half a century, recently opened to visitors, and finally accessible by air and road, Kayah is one of Southeast Asia’s last frontiers for inspiring, authentic travel. With pristine nature, ethnic diversity and a location close to Inle Lake and the Thai border, Kayah holds great potential for community tourism in the small local villages and offers a privileged insight into traditional ways of life.
Guests can follow the ‘trail of the ancestors’ with local villages as guides and sample local cuisine at a ‘jungle picnic’.
Joining the Kayah delegation at WTM will be Pascal Kho Twe, a prize-winning Myanmar author, who wrote From the Land of Green Ghosts and who is a native of the Kayah Padaung ‘Long Neck’ Tribe.