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Ngapali Beach

With its pristine, palm-tree-fringed white sand, the clear waters of the Bay of Bengal, and a host of sophisticated accommodation, Ngapali (ငပလီကမ္းေျခ) – supposedly named years ago by a homesick Italian reminiscing about Napoli – has a justified reputation as Myanmar's premier beach getaway.

But for all the swish resorts, Ngapali maintains a laid-back fishing village vibe, as evidenced by the small boats that head out nightly to catch the bounty that is served up to visitors just hours later. The locals remain smiley, and despite the increasing number of hotels, the 15 miles of coast here means there's still a lot of space on the beach.

Peak season is from November to March. Even then, Ngapali is an early-to-bed place rather than a rip-roaring beach-party destination. During the rainy season (May to October), things are almost comatose, with many hotels closing for renovations or just opening a few rooms.

Top attractions

These are our favorite local haunts, touristy spots, and hidden gems throughout Ngapali Beach.