Port of the Week: Bo Cho, Myanmar
| July 15, 2009

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Come 2010, Star Clipper adds two spectacular seven-night Myanmar itineraries to its Far East roster. The ship will continue to sail it’s popular Northern Route and Southern Route round-trip Phuket, Thailand, cruises, as well. One of the new ports of call is Bo Cho, Myanmar.

Bo Cho Island is one of the many beautiful islands that make up the Mergui Archipelago of Myanmar in the Andaman Sea. It boasts a mile long sandbank, and four or five months out of the year the island is a temporary home to the Moken, who are sometimes referred to as “Sea Gypsies” or the “Salon.”

At their village, the only habitation on the island, tourists are invited to visit and learn about the traditions and survival methods of the Moken. Their lifestyle of living on a boat for seven to eight months out of the year and surviving off of the sea is one that piques interest and curiosity.

During their seafaring months, the Moken go from island to island, traveling in groups of a six or more boats, each boat containing a family, usually of three generations. They use nets, traps, spears, and primitive diving gear to catch fish, shells, sea cucumbers, lobsters, turtles, and sea urchins — some for consumption, but the rest to sell at town markets, which they frequent to gather day-to-day supplies. The thatched roofs of their boats can sometimes be seen covered with marine life drying in the sun in preparation to sell.

Bo Cho also has a beautiful sand bar that is the perfect place to relax while enjoying the view of the lush tropical forest that makes up the island.

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