Myanmar Microlending Trip

Study Economics in Southeast Asia

While you’re in Myanmar to study economics, volunteer to help the locals, many of whom make less than $3 per day. Teach children English or help doctors provide much-needed healthcare for the country’s residents.

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Sojourn – Gain a better understanding of the community you’re visiting. Learn about different religions or spiritual practices. How do these impact the communities? How does religion or spirituality influence local traditions?

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Savor – Will you choose sweet or savory? Take the time to visit local markets and discover unique local ingredients. Learn how to prepare traditional meals & local favorites.

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Tip of the Tongue – Each morning, take the time to learn a few basic greetings and phrases in the local language. Learn how to write greetings & your name in the local script.

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A Wrinkle in Time – History influences our present. Discover the history of the country you visit. Hear the stories of your guides & their family history. Where do they come from?

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Journal Journeys – Take some time to reflect on the day’s events and document your journey. Spend a moment journaling about the day had & day ahead. These are memories for a lifetime!

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Culture – From local dances, festivals, or simple gestures to communicate – all of these make up a country’s culture. Learn and practice cultural norms & how to show respect in the culture you visit.

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You’ll land in Naypyidaw, the capital city of Myanmar. Take some time to explore and check out the markets before you start your journey tomorrow.

Your first stop today is the Myanma Economic Bank. It’s the first and foremost state-owned commercial bank in Myanmar. Here, you’ll learn about the economy of the country and the history of its banking system. 

Next, you’ll go to Uppatasanti Pagoda. It’s a 321-foot tall Buddhist temple that’s beautiful from afar, especially at night. Inside, you’ll see some stunning stone murals depicting key scenes from Myanmar’s Buddhist history.

For your second day in Naypyidaw, you’ll start at the National Museum. The museum has some beautiful jewelry from the 11th century and other artifacts. You’ll learn about the political history of Myanmar, which is deeply tied to its economic history.

Now, you’ll head to a beauty salon. You’re not there to get a blowout, though; the salon’s owner is a recipient of a series of microloans that helped her start her business! You’ll talk with her about how the microloans impacted her life and help her with some tasks around her salon.

After some travel, you’ll arrive in the city of Mandalay. Your first visit is to Kuthodaw Pagoda, a Buddhist stupa that contains the world’s largest book. It has 730 tablets and 1,460 pages, and each stone tablet has its own roof with a precious gem on top. It’s really something to see. 

Then you’ll head to the Jade Market, where you’ll find many merchants selling, polishing, and inspecting pieces of jade. Myanmar has 70 percent of the world’s supply of high-quality jadeite, so it’s vital to the country’s economy.

Today, you’ll head to Shwe In Bin Kyang, a teak monastery. Its central building stands on tree trunks and features many teak carvings. Take a moment to pause here and cleanse yourself of your anxieties and negative emotions.

Your next stop is Mahamuni Pagoda, where thousands of Buddhists come to venerate the building’s 13-foot tall seated Buddha. The Buddha statue is thought to be up to 2,000 years old. If you’re interested, participate with the locals in their activities, or simply marvel at its beauty.

To end your day, have some traditional Burmese curry for dinner.

Do some stretches, because you’re going to be doing some walking today. You’ll climb Mandalay Hill, a 760-foot hill that towers over the entire city. As you pass some temples and pagodas, you’ll have to walk barefoot. After about 30 minutes, you’ll be able to view the beautiful city from above.

For the last stop on your journey in Myanmar, you’re going to the Zegyo Market. After you have some time to fill the extra space in your suitcase, you’ll meet up with another recipient of a microloan. This woman got the loan to start her own market stall. She’ll tell you about how her life has changed since she got the microloan and about the process of applying for it. Then you’ll help her run her stall for the day. The market is busy, so you’ll have to keep up!

Your time in Myanmar may be over, but you’ve learned so much about microloans and how they impact the lives of women in other countries. Once you get home, maybe you’ll even find some people who could use microloans and start the cycle all over again.

Microlending is a great way to help people in developing countries gather more resources to create better lives, and people can help even if they don’t have a ton of money to spare. When you study economics in Myanmar, you’ll learn how these loans work and how they impact the lives of some real women in the country.


3-6 Day
Group Trips


7-12 Day
Group Trips


7-14 Day
Group Trips

Interested in adding or modifying activities? No problem! All Worldwide Navigator itineraries can be customized to your liking!

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