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Myanmar’s only sea gypsies

The local natives are an ethnic minority called the Moken, sometimes known as Sea Gypsies, although this term actually covers several groups in Southeast Asia. They are a sea-dwelling people and they follow a traditional way of life, doing things such as fishing and building boats very much the way they have done for centuries. They can be found living on their traditional boats during the dry season, but usually keep to land in the rainy season. The Moken claim that the islands were detached from the mainland after a great mythological flood.


The Mergui Archipelago is located in far southern Myanmar (Burma) and is part of the Tanintharyi Region. It consists of more than 800 islands, varying in size from very small to hundreds of square kilometres, all lying in the Andaman Sea off the western shore of the Malay Peninsula near its landward end where it joins the rest of Indochina. They are occasionally referred to as the Pashu Islands because the Malay inhabitants are locally called Pashu.


Opportunity for Communers to participate in community driven ecological conservation and restoration projects in Mergui Archipelago region.
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