MYANMAR, also known as Burma, with an area of 676,577 square km is the largest country by area in Southeast Asia, sharing borders with Bangladesh, India, China, Laos and Thailand. It has a coastline of more than 2,500 km facing over the Bay of Bengal and Andaman Sea. The country stretches over 2090 km from north to south and over 925 km east to west. It has a 2832 km long coastline on the Indian Ocean. Over 50 percent of the total land area is covered with forests. Myanmar is rich in natural resources, particularly timber, gems and precious stones (jade, ruby, sapphire), petroleum, natural gas.
Seasons & climate: Myanmar has three seasons; Hot season/Summer (March to May); Rainy season/monsoon (June to October); Cold Season/winter (November to February). During the rainy season, rainfall varies from as much as 200 inches along the coastline, 25 to 50 inches in the Dry Zone and the average of 100 inches in the plain. Average temperature ranges from 21 C in the northern highlands to 38C in central and lower areas. Generally humid.
Time difference: 6:30 hrs + GMT
People: Myanmar is a union of over 138 ethnic groups. The major ethnic races are Kachin, Kayah, Kayin, Chin, Mon, Bamar, Rakhine and Shan.
Language: Official/predominant language is Myanmar (Burmese), with 8 ethnic languages of the main ethnic groups and it has more than 380 dialects. English language is also understandable.
Religion and culture: Everyone has their independent right in religion. Theravada Buddhism is a predominant religion embraced by about 85% of the total population that influences their daily and social lives. The people maintain the tradition of close family ties, respect for elders and devotion to the teachings of Buddha. They live a simple life and are easily contented. Myanmar people are known for their hospitality and friendliness. There are also practices of other religions: Christian, Islam, Hindu and some animists.