Aung San Suu Kyi finally received her 1991 Nobel Peace Prize in Oslo on Saturday, 21 years after being barred from collecting it in person.
She told an audience in the Oslo City Hall that at the time, the award made her feel part of the real world even though she was under house arrest in Myanmar.
"What the Nobel Peace Prize did was to draw me once again into the world of other human beings outside the isolated area in which I lived, to restore a sense of reality to me," she said
She was given a standing ovation led by Norway's King Harald and Queen Sonja.
Ms Suu Kyi, 66, said much remained to be resolved in her country.
"Hostilities have not ceased in the far north; to the west, communal violence resulting in arson and murder were taking place just several days before I started out the journey that has brought me here today," she said.
"There still remain (political) prisoners in Burma. It is to be feared that because the best known detainees have been released, the remainder, the unknown ones, will be forgotten," she said.
Earlier, Ms Suu Kyi, who was elected to parliament in April, said she was confident President Thein Sein wanted to put the country on a new path.
"I don't think we should fear reversal," she told NRK. "(But) I don't think we should take it for granted there is no reversal."