FEATURE - The Irrawaddy Magazine
The Banyan Trees of Pindaya

The beautiful centuries-old trees at a cave complex in Shan State create the perfect atmosphere for a famous mile-long pagoda festival.

From Civil War to the Refugee Camp to the Newsroom

Saw Yan Naing writes about the obstacles he overcame before becoming a senior reporter at The Irrawaddy and joining the East-West Center’s Jefferson Fellowship.

Water Supply Strains to Meet Demands of Growing Rangoon

Pressure on Rangoon’s water supply is growing as the urban population increases and development projects put greater demand on the main pipe feeding the city.

Burma Opium Fight Failing; Soldiers Shooting Up

A village in Burma’s remote northeast lays bare the country’s struggle to rein in its narcotics problems, from rising poppy production to rampant drug addiction.

In Canada, an Ambassador for Burma’s Chinlone

A 60-year-old in Toronto has practiced the Burmese sport almost every day for three decades and is encouraging other foreigners to give it a try.

A Boat Trip to Maungdaw

A reporter travels to northern Arakan State, visits the Bangladesh border and makes his way to the village where dozens of people were allegedly killed.

In Burma, Some Ex-Political Prisoners Heed Capitalism’s Calling

Sensing business opportunities but facing no shortage of hurdles, former political prisoners make a go of it in Burma’s reforming economy.

In Tenasserim Hills, Rise in Mining Threatens Communities

Mining operations are seriously harming communities and the environment in southern Burma’s Tenasserim Hills, while many more mining firms wait to explore the once-isolated range.

Burma’s Lonely ‘Dictator Pagoda’

A Buddhist monument that was built by Gen. Ne Win near the landmark Shwedagon Pagoda sees few visitors in Rangoon.

100-Year-Old Pilot Returns to Burma With War Stories and Sense of Humor

A Chinese American centenarian known for flying a famous US general to Myitkyina as part of an evacuation during World War II comes back to the Golden Land.

School Hits the Road for Burmese Teashop Boys

Burmese child laborers in urban teashops are getting a chance to renew their education on buses that have been transformed into mobile classrooms.

Photos Look Back at 19th Century Burma

A new exhibit in Rangoon offers a glimpse of the architecture, fashion, culture and daily life of local people over a century ago.

‘A Show of Hands’ for Burma’s Former Political Prisoners

An artist will take plastic molds of 1,000 former political prisoners’ hands and display them with videos about the individuals’ experiences in prison.

The Safe Sex Talk, Burmese Style

In a Buddhist-majority country where talking about intimacy is taboo, efforts are under way to develop a better system for educating youths about safe sex.

One Week, 30 People, 300 Images of Burma

The latest photography book about the Southeast Asian nation offers something different, as its foreign and local contributors traveled much farther than typical tourist hotspots.

In Kachin State, an Act of Kindness on Christmas

A Rangoon-based fashion designer brings $25,000 worth of gifts for children at camps for internally displaced persons in north Burma.

‘I’ve Always Looked for Ways to Expose the Country’s Real Situation’

Pioneering woman filmmaker Shin Daewe discusses her interest in documentary-making, Burma’s political transition and the country’s growing interest in her work.

Putting a Beat to Burma’s Reforms

Encouraging creative expression, one NGO sets up shop in Burma, where it hopes to provide a voice to marginalized youth through music and video.

Burma’s Oldest Art Gallery Celebrates Anniversary

Famous artists showcase their works at Burma’s longest running gallery, with a collection of paintings showing how Rangoon’s urban landscape has changed since 1962.


With its water slides and swings and cafés half-hidden in the shrubbery, the Fountain Park in Naypyitaw is meant as an evening retreat for the country’s civil servants and their families—somewhere to chill out after a day’s toil inside the city’s imposing and far-flung government buildings.