Myanmar is the largest country in mainland south-east Asia Its continuous coastline of almost 3,000 km extending along the Bay of Bengal and the Andaman Sea offers very attractive wildlife destinations and opportunities for nature tourism. Many sandy beaches and hundreds of tiny islands provide ample opportunity for wildlife observations as well as snorkelling, fishing and swimming. In the coastal zone, besides mangroves, coral reefs, sea grass beds, sandy beaches there are many intertidal mudflats. These are home to many globally threatened water bird species, such as the Spoon-billed Sandpiper, Nordmann’s Greenshank, and Lesser Adjutant Stork. Five different marine turtles, Dugong and Irrawaddy Dolphins and many others, but also water birds in internationally important numbers live on Myanmar’s rich and diverse coast. The Myanmar coastal zone is also important for fish stocks, which support artisanal fishery, and other livelihoods for local people. Rapid and often unsustainable development (Zöckler et al. 2013 hyperlink: Scoping Paper Myanmar_final ) is beginning to jeopardise the fragile relationship between these crucial habitats and the livelihoods of rural people who make up a high proportion of the population of Myanmar. Also unsustainable hunting and harvesting by local people can be combated by introducing nature tourism.


Myanmar is a very diverse country and rich in inland and freshwater habitats. Like none of its neighboring countries its rich forest areas still harbour wildlife, including tigers and many other wild cat species, Asian Tapir, pangolin and monkey species, such as the endemic Snub-nosed monkeys and Hoolock Gibbons as well as many endemic and rare bird species, snakes and butterflies. The Taninthariy and Lenya National Park in the south host the most diverse tropical forest fauna of all. It is proposed to link both national parks and reserves with a corridor by the Lenya Park extension, the most important place where the globally critically endangered Gueney’s Pitta has its last stronghold in the world. The huge complex of over 400,000 ha offers a refuge for wildlife and a huge opportunity of wildlife encounters.

A third major habitat complex are inland lakes and wetlands. Moeyongyi, the only Ramsar site in Myanmar offers good opportunities to see a rich selection of waterbirds not far from the capitol Yangon. Lake Indawgyi in Kachin State in the North is still largely pristine and serves as an important resort for Arctic and northern waterbirds, as well as globally threatened species and is currently developed as a Ramsar Site by Flora Fauna International (FFI) in close collaboration with the Forest Department of Myanmar.

Several sites listed below capture the variety of the rich biodiverse in the country and provide an ideal opportunity in combining nature tourism supporting the protected area development and species conservation.

The remaining pristine beaches and inland wilderness offer great touristic attractions and provide a great value for local communities without jeopardising the natural capital.