04/26/2012 08:10 am ET Updated Jun 26, 2012

Back In Time In Misunderstood Myanmar (PHOTOS)

I traveled to Myanmar in late 2010 (prior to recent steps toward democracy and Hillary Clinton's high-profile visit), so much of what I'd heard about the country involved the words "junta," "dictatorship" and "oppression."

Many media outlets grouped the country together with Iran, North Korea and other "axis of evil" countries. Most travelers I knew, even ones more adventurous than me, refused to visit the country on "moral" grounds.

From the moment I stepped off the plane, I was indeed taken aback, but not by any seeming threats to my safety or personal freedom. Rather, it felt like I had traveled back in time at least half a century.

I would leave Myanmar two weeks later not scared or offended, but humbled. Browse through some of my favorite photos from this incredible journey to see for yourself what I mean.

Back in Time in Misunderstood Myanmar