The Asian Development Bank recently unveiled the Myanmar Tourism Master Plan for 2013 to 2020. A summary of this master plan can be found in ADB’s website here as well as the downloadable PDFs below.
We extracted relevant aspects of this master plan where it relates to coastal tourism development. There are two coastal areas that stand out. Refer to map above for locations.
- Access improvements to Ngapali beach
- New road to Lontha Village
- Rehabilitation of road between Thandwe Airport and Ngapali Village
Chaungtha & Ngwesaung
- Improving access from Chaungtha and Ngwesaung with Yangon (through Pathein)
Due to the suggested improvements in accessibility between Yangon and the coastal destinations of Chaungtha and Ngwesaung we believe this area will be the main focus of coastal resort development in Myanmar in the near term.
At Ngapali, another coastal beach resort destination further north, improvements to infrastructure are limited to upgrading local transport accessibility. Due to Ngapali’s further distance from Yangon, tourist access is still easiest by the domestic airport at Thandwe. And until the airport is upgraded to international status we foresee Ngapali remains a niche resort location.
On the other hand, what’s notable by its absence is any mention of Maungmagan or the Myeik / Mergui islands.
While the overall master plan suggests improvements to existing transport infrastructure the initiatives are far too basic. For a high-level country tourism master plan much more is needed. An in-depth and comprehensive analysis is required in order to set the direction for coastal tourism development over the longer term.
Can we expect to see a more detailed Myanmar coastal tourism development master plan soon?
ADB Myanmar Tourism Master Plan Summary
Myanmar Tourism 2013 Fast Facts