Ngapali Beach is probably the most well-known in Myanmar and by the tourist. It is located in Rakhaing State of western Myanmar, closed to the ancient city Thandwe (Sandoway to the British), facing the Bay of Bengal. The fine grains of white sandy beach stretches for around 11 kilometers (7-miles) is fringed by the swaying coconut palms, and rimmed to the cobalt-blue waters. The pristine peaceful beach line is free from noisy bars, souvenir vendors, smoky traffic, and the crowd except the occasional bullock carts. The huge coral reef prevents dangerous marine animals, while the water is clean and quite inviting. And of course, Ngapali is also famed for the fresh, tasty seafood, where the most dishes you taste is from their daily catches, not from the frozen stock. Apart from the sea, sun, and the sand concept, visitors can enjoy bicycle tour to the traditional fishermen villages and the ancient town Sandoway, boat tours to nearby islands, snorkeling, fishing or golfing. With the establishments of several eco-friendlies, seductive 5-star hotels, the beach relaxation in Ngaplia beach is nothing but the experience of paradise! Ngapali can conveniently be reached by flights from Yangon, Bagan, and Inle Lake or any days of the week; a few scheduled flights from Sittwe. By road from Yangon or Bagan via Pyay is also possible but it will take around 14-hours on the poorly paved up/down hill road across Rakhaing range. The best time to visit Ngapali is from October to April, since the monsoon hits the entire coastal line by the first week of May and last until end of September. During the monsoon season, most of the hotel may not be functioning.
In the year 2000, Ngwe Saung was added to be Myanmar’s newest beach destinations. Literally means “Silver Beach”, the 9-mile (14.5km) long beach facing Bay of Bengal has indeed unspoiled natural beauties and pretty attractive white sandy beach, gentle slopes, clean & clear blue water and complete privacy. There are over 20-hotels, from simple, basic chalets to spa boutique resorts that would suite to any budget and luxury sought. Ngwe Saung beach can be reached by 6-hour drive from Yangon, traverse the vast delta region via Pathein, a provincial capital and an ancient port town in 11th century, is a great way to study the diverse delta culture. There are a few flight connections to Pathein, 30-mile (48km) from Ngwe Saung, from Bagan and Heho depending on the days of the week and the seasonal demand. There are several activities visitors can enjoy – snorkeling, scuba diving, fishing, boating, surfing, village & island tours, and bicycling. And needless to say, do not miss to try tasty fresh seafood.
Although less attractive then Ngapali and Ngwe Saung beaches, Chang Thar is still one of the best beach destinations in Myanmar. In fact, Chaung Thar is located just north of Ngwe Saung, about the same distance, and direction from Yangon via Pathein to Ngwe Saung. There are several standard beach bungalows and chalets and a couple of upscale hotels. The sandy beach has silvery look, sometimes brownish but the water is clean, clear and attractive enough.
Myeik (Mergui) Archipelago features over 800 pristine, jungle-clad, unspoiled virgin islands scattered throughout the Andaman Sea of the coast between the towns Myeik (Mergui) and Kawthaung (Victoria Point), like emeralds on the blue carpet. There are marine parks, blue & turquoises coral gardens, rare and endangered bird species, the sea gypsy (Mokens) culture, silver-white powdery sandy beaches, glass-clear water, rich marine and land wildlife where the entire archipelago virtually untouched from the humans are some of the points that draws attention to the sea adventurers and those who’d like to escape completely from the hectic human society at least for a moment. Contrary to its enormous potential tourism, there are very limited beach resorts and exploration options to be chosen due to the slow and extraordinary concerns of bringing up the area to the tourism.