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Best of Myanmar Tour
- Stroll around the grand Shwedagon Pagoda in Yangon
- Meet Buddhist monks at colourful monasteries
- Learn about the ancient history at Bagan and enjoy the most beautiful sunset at a long teakwood bridge
- Learn about the arts and crafts of Myanmar at local villages
- Discover ancient cities around Myanmar
- Visit leg-rower fishermen on Inle Lake and the ruins of Shan royal cities.
Wonderful 14 days trip to learn about the history, culture and religion of Myanmar. We begin the tour at the glorious Shwedagon Pagoda in the heart of Yangon. We then visit the sacred pilgrimage site of Golden Rock near Bago. Next is Bagan with its scattered temples and rich history. We will mingle with the locals in small villages to experience the villagers’ daily routine.
One of the most interesting experiences in Mandalay is to observe the daily lives of monks at the Mahargandaryon Monastery and to enjoy the sunset at the famous teakwood U Bein Bridge. The historical monuments of the last dynasty of Myanmar’s kingdom will be another highlight.
We then journey to Shan State to visit an elephant camp to see the life of mahouts with their families taking care of these majestic animals. We will also hike in a forested area and then go on a boat trip on Inle Lake.
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Day 1 : Arrival and explore Yangon
We start our day of exploring downtown Yangon on foot by visiting the beautiful colonial buildings. First on our list is the Yangon City Hall which is centrally located in downtown Yangon and is considered a fine example of Burmese architecture, featuring a traditional roof. City Hall is close to several important landmarks such as Sule Pagoda, Maha-Bandula Park, the High Court, and the Main Post Office – all impressive colonial-style buildings. We will have lunch at an authentic Myanmar restaurant, and then visit the famous Bogyoke Aung San Market (known as Scott Market) with its 2,000 sprawling shops for clothing, gemstones, jewellery, traditional arts & crafts and souvenirs. Its building is recognized as one of the “blue plagues” of the Yangon Heritage Buildings. We then proceed to Musmeah Yeshua Synagogue which is the last remaining Jewish house of worship in downtown Yangon, and Burma’s only synagogue. Time permitted we will also visit temples such as the Shri Kali Hindu temple, the Chinese Guanyin Temple, and the Chauk Htat Gyi Pagoda with its 66 meters long reclining Buddha – one of the largest in Myanmar. Our day will end at Shwedagon Pagoda, which is the most sacred Buddhist pagoda in Myanmar and surrounded by an array of temples, shrines, and pavilions. Afterwards, we return to the hotel to relax.
Day 2 : Yangon – Golden Rock – Bago
Early in the morning we drive to the famous Golden Rock. On the way we visit a World War 2 Cemetery and also an interesting hand-made pottery workshop for a demonstration of this traditional Burmese fine art. We then continue to Kinpun Base Camp, the departure point to the top of the mountain to see the Golden Rock. On arrival we will have lunch and then take an exhilarating ride in an open-air truck up the mountain. You can choose to either sit in the back of the truck or if seats are available in the front. Enjoy the scenic view along the way – a trip you won’t easily forget! After experiencing the surreal atmosphere at this holy place, the Golden Rock (Kyaik Hti Yoe pagoda), and the unforgettable panoramas from the top of the mountain, we return to Base Camp and drive back to the nearby town of Bago where we spend the night.
Day 3 : Bago sightseeing and fly to Bagan
We first visit Shwemawdaw Pagoda (known as “the soul of Bago”) and the Kanbawzathardi Palace. This palace dates back to Myanmar’s second dynasty. Here we will find out more about the history of the kings of Myanmar and then visit Shwetharlyaung which is one of the biggest reclining Buddha images in Myanmar. We then visit Kyaik Pun Pagoda with its four-faced Buddha images which is famous for its architecture and the history of its founder. Afterwards we drive back to Yangon and then fly to Bagan where we will transfer to our hotel for a well-deserved rest.
Day 4 : Bagan sightseeing
Today, our journey begins with a visit to the colorful local market where villagers gather every day to buy and sell their products and other goods. Learn about the daily lives of the people from your guide and explore the market. We then continue to the golden stupa of Shwezigon Pagoda for an introduction to Bagan’s rich history. Let’s visit the nearby Wetkyi-In Gubyaukgyi Temple with its exquisite Jataka mural paintings and the elegant Htilominlo Temple noted for its fine plaster carvings and glazed sandstone decorations. After lunch and a short rest at our hotel, we visit the Ananda Temple, an architectural masterpiece and one of the most beautiful temples in Bagan. Built in the early Mon-Myanmar style, Ananda temple contains two unique Buddha images whose expressions seem to change depending on the distance from which the images are viewed. Afterwards we visit Thatbyinnyu Temple, the highest temple in Bagan and the massive Dhammayangyi Temple noted for its remarkable brickwork. Enjoy an unforgettable sunset over Nyaung Lat Phet Hill before we return to our hotel.
Day 5 : More Bagan sightseeing
We will visit the rural village of Minnanthu, one of the places where you can see cotton weaving. We will use this place as a starting point to explore Bagan’s famous structures such as the Laymyathnar monastery complex, Phayathonsu, and Nandamannya with its unique mural paintings from the 13th century. After lunch at one of the local restaurants, we return to our hotel for a break of a few hours to hide away from the midday scorching heat. Later in the afternoon we visit Myinkabar Village where you can observe a traditional lacquerware workshop to observe the production of one of Myanmar’s best-known handicraft. Next is Manuha Temple with its massive Buddha images, the Nanpaya Temple built with sandstone, and Gubyauk Gyi (Myinkaba) Temple where you can see colorful mural paintings from the Bagan period. During the late afternoon we embark on a slow boat cruise down the Irrawaddy River to observe the lifestyle of the fishermen and riverside villagers. From the boat we will have beautiful views of the sun setting over Bagan’s temples. Memories that will last forever! Afterwards, we return to our hotel.
Day 6 : Mt.Popa – Salay excursion
Mt. Popa is a one-hour drive from Bagan and rises 1,520 meters into the sky. Climbing to the summit takes about 45 minutes where we will visit the Mahagiri Shrine dedicated to the “Nat’s” (spirits). From here the panoramic view is stunning. On the way to Salay, an old religious center, we stop at Chauk to enjoy the colorful local market which is rarely visited by tourists but is really nice to enjoy and just flow with the locals while taking photos. In Salay we will learn more about monastic life when we visit the Yoke Sone Kyaung Monastery, which is a masterpiece built with fine wood curves. Afterwards we return to our Bagan hotel.
Day 7 : Fly to Mandalay and Amarapura – Mandalay sightseeing
Time to fly to Mandalay and drive to Amarapura, one of the ancient cities near Mandalay. We start by visiting the Mahargandayone Monastery, one of the most important houses of Buddhism in Myanmar. Here we will see how the Buddish monks live their daily lives and practice Buddhism. We then drive to Mandalay where our adventure starts at the golden Mahanumi Pagoda, one of the most famous landmarks of the city. Our next stop will be the old Royal Palace, the last place of Myanmar’s royalty and the Kuthodaw Pagoda, the world’s “biggest book” and recognized as a UNESCO ‘s heritage site. We end the day at Mandalay Hill for sunset over the Ayeyarwaddy River and then return to our hotel.
Day 8 : Mingun by boat and Sagaing and Innwa, U Bein Bridge
Early morning we take a boat to Mingun, an ancient site northwest of Mandalay. The experience of crossing the Ayeyarwaddy River from Mandalay to Mingun by boat is exciting and relaxing. We will witness the daily routine of the locals at the jetty and along the river which will create lots of memorable experiences. On arrival in Mingun we will visit the massive unfinished Mingun Pahtodawgyi, the world’s third-largest Mingun Bell, and Myatheintan Pagoda, one of the most picturesque sites in the Mandalay area. We then drive to Ava (Innwa) to see the 27-meter-high masonry watchtower of Nan Myint (known as the ”Leaning Tower of Innwa”), and the Bagaya Monastery built with 276 teak pillars. Here we can observe a traditional alms bowls workshop. Another highlight of today will be the local style horse-cart rides around the ancient ruins. Our next adventure will be visiting Sagaing Hill, one of the holy places of Myanmar where there are lots of Buddhist practices and beautiful scenery. Time for a romantic sunset at Amarapura’s famous U Bein Bridge, made of teak logs and planks over 200 years ago by Mayor U Bein. Make sure you walk on the bridge with your loved one because there is an old saying in Myanmar that you will be together forever with the one whom you walk over the U Bein Bridge. Think about all the memories you created today as we drive back to our hotel.
Day 9 : Drive to Pindaya and Pindaya sightseeing and overnight at Kalaw
We will use the old road to Kalaw to see the many beautiful places along the way. It will take 7 hours to drive from Mandalay to Pindaya where we will stop at a few places for breathtaking views and lunch. Pindaya is a small charming town of the Danu ethnic group with their unique culture and history. In Pindaya we will explore Pindaya Cave, decorated with over a thousand Buddha’s statues. Here is also an umbrella-making cottage to learn more about how the Danu people make hand-made umbrellas. Along the way to Kalaw we pass by farms of cabbage, peanuts, and seasonal fruits. We stay for the night in Kalaw.
Day 10 : Visit Elephant Camp and drive to Inle Lake
We start the day at the Kalaw Elephant Camp, one of the most recommended camps in Myanmar since elephants are being treated very well. On arrival, we will receive information about the camp by English speaking staff and then walk (5-7 minutes) to the elephant village to see the life of the elephant trainers (mahouts) and their families. Lunch will be served at the camp. We may also explore the nearby forest to see butterflies, birds, and orchids if you want to spend more time in nature. We then drive back to Kalaw and proceed to Inle Lake where we overnight.
Day 11 : Inle Lake and Indein village excursion
Congratulations, you are now at the most beautiful natural lake in Myanmar. Lake Inle is one of the most popular destinations in Myanmar, famous for its people, their lifestyle, and the beautiful nature. Today our sightseeing will include the floating islands, Heya Ywama Village, Phaung Daw Oo Phaya, and the unique leg-rowers and their traditional fishing style. We will also visit small cottages of silversmiths and weaving by Kayan women. Today we also visit the ruins of Indein, an ancient “pagoda forest” which is partly covered by vegetation. We will walk for about an hour to enjoy a fantastic view over the lake and to visit a school in Tha Ley Village. We return to our hotel where you can enjoy the swimming pool with a cocktail as the sun sets.
Day 12 : Biking around Nyaung Shwe and fly back to Yangon
More adventure around Inle Lake is waiting for you. Lake Inle is 7 miles wide from east to west and 14 miles long from north to south. There are so much to see around the lake. Today drive to the town of Nyaung Shwe, the gateway to Lake Inle. Your camera should be ready to capture photos of fisherman you may see along the way. Then, our biking starts by visiting Nyaung Shwe Market, then to the famous ancient Shwe Yan Pay Monastery. After lunch at the local restaurant, we continue our adventure to the eastern part of the lake to explore more villages and the Red Mountain Winery. Wine tasting is available and we will enjoy one of the finest wines in Myanmar. Afterwards, we drive to Heho airport to fly back to Yangon. We overnight at Yangon.
Day 13 : Yangon sightseeing
We’re back in Yangon again so we can continue exploring this interesting city by going to the Chauk Htat Gyi Pagoda which has a 65 meter long reclining Buddha image, the third largest one in Myanmar. After lunch, we walk around Kandawgyi Park and take pictures of Karaweik Hall, and the grand Shwedagon Pagoda. We will also visit the house of U Thant, who was the Secretary-General of the United Nations from 1961 to 1971. His Yangon home is now a museum which offers interesting displays of his lifetime and the history of the cold war. We then visit Botahtaung Pagoda, located in downtown near the Yangon River. The pagoda is hollow inside and houses what is believed to be a scared hair of Buddha. Afterwards, we visit more temples such as the Shri Kali Hindu Temple and the Guanyin Chinese Temple in Chinatown. We overnight in Yangon.
Day 14 : Yangon departure
Have a great breakfast at the hotel and then our driver will transfer you to the Yangon International Airport. Sit back and think about your incredible trip to Myanmar!
Inclusion And Exclusion
- 13 nights hotel accommodation with breakfast
- 3 ways domestic flights (Yangon – Bagan/ Bagan – Mandalay/Heho – Yangon)
- Air conditioning car with driver for sightseeing
- English speaking station guides for sightseeing
- Entrance fees
- Trekking Fees for Elephant Camp
- Airport transfer in/out
- Truck up and truck down at Golden Rock
- Sunset boat in Bagan
- Horse cart in Bagan
- Public boat to Ava
- Horse cart in Ava
- Private boat to Mingun
- Private boat in Inle Lake
- Biking around Nyaung Shwe
- Water and refreshment towel on tour
- Toll fee and fuel charges for car
- Government tax and service charges
- Tourist visa
- Personal expenses
- Food and beverages (Except breakfast where mentioned)
- Travel insurance
- Items not mentioned in “Services included”