myanmarThis tour takes you to all the major cities in everybody's program of Myanmar with several interesting side trips to the mountain resort of Pyin Oo Lwin favoured by the ruling British escaping the heat of the lowlands, Mt Popa the abode of ancient Myanmar's 38 nat, Amarapura where life is as it was a couple of hundred years ago, an easy trek in Inle, and a glorious five days on the recently-open beach of Ngwe Saung four hours by road west from Yangon.

Route: Yangon, Mandalay, Pyin Oo Lwin (Maymyo), Mingun, Amarapura, Bagan, Mt Popa, Heho, Inle Lake and Ngwe Saung Beach

 

check16Inclusive:

• 15 nights in stated hotel accommodation with breakfast
• Transfer & transportation by private air-con saloon
• Boat fares for Mandalay-Bagan, Mingun, Inle, Indein
• Horse-cart for sunset in Bagan & Pyin Oo Lwin
• Meal (1 dinner in Inle on Day 10)
• S/seeing with station English speaking guide except in Ngwe Saung (Day11-15)
• All entrance fees

stop16Exclusive:

• Visa fee
• Domestic airfares for Yangon-Mandalay, Bagan-Heho-Yangon
• Yangon int'l airport departure tax USD10/pax
• Other personal expenses like use of hotel minibar, laundry & phone-calls
• Travel insurance
• Services not mentioned in the itinerary
• Tips and gratuities to guide and driver

 

noteItinerary:

Day 1: Yangon Arrival

Upon arrival in Yangon (Rangoon), you are met and transferred to your centrally located hotel. You meet your tour guide for a briefing of your Myanmar program. Free at leisure after the briefing.
Overnight Trader's Hotel, Yangon.

Day 2: Yangon – Mandalay – Pyin Oo Lwin (Maymyo) (Breakfast)

Breakfast at the hotel. A city tour will acquaint us with the major sights of Yangon city. Shwedagon Pagoda dominates the skyline and the ubiquitous Karaweik Hall sits on the Royal Lake. There is also time for you to explore this fascinating city full of dilapidated colonial edifices. In the afternoon we are transferred to the airport for our flight to Mandalay. We use a private airline in Burma and not the government one. Mandalay is situated near the banks of the Ayeyarwaddy River. Upon arrival we proceed to Pyin Oo Lwin (Maymyo), the former hill resort of the British preserved as it has once been, a drive of about 2 hours. Overnight at Pyin Oo Lwin Hotel, Pyin Oo Lwin (Maymyo).

Day 3: Pyin Oo Lwin (Maymyo) - Mandalay (Breakfast)

Breakfast at the hotel. Burma's most famous hill station, Maymyo (Pyin Oo Lwin), provides an escape from the heat of the plains. Established during the colonial era, it is today a crossroad for traders coming over from China and this is reflected in its colourful market. Time permitting, you may explore surroundings in a local horse-drawn carriage called a 'myin-lay'. English-style country mansions and Chinese temples dot the hillsides in a place rightly called the 'vegetable garden' of Burma. We return to Mandalay where the rest of the day is spent touring by visiting various temples, including the Kuthodaw Pagoda that claims to house the world's largest 'book'. Time permitting, it is a challenging walk up Mandalay Hill (236 metres), but the views from the summit are breathtaking, and along the way there are many shrines of religious significance. After sunset descend and return to hotel.
Overnight at Mandalay Hill Hotel, Mandalay.

Day 4: Mandalay – Mingun – Amarapura (Breakfast)

Breakfast at the hotel. We make our way down to the city's lively waterfront which offers an interesting backdrop as we take a boat trip up the Ayeyarwaddy River to Mingun - the site of the world's largest pagoda (albeit unfinished!) and the world's largest unbroken bell. Mandalay was a former capital of Burma; however the surrounding countryside contains many towns that could lay claim to that same title at some stage or another in the past. We embark on a tour visiting the remnants of one of these once-great cities, Amarapura. Weather permitting, we may also view a spectacular sunset over the 200-year-old U Bein all-teak wooden bridge still in much use.
Overnight at Mandalay Hill Hotel, Mandalay.

Day 5: Mandalay - Bagan (Pagan) (Breakfast)

Breakfast at the hotel. We spend almost an entire day on a boat (Shwekinari or Malikha) as we cruise down the Ayeyarwaddy River from Mandalay to Bagan (about 9 hours). Boat departs the jetty at about 6.30am. Along the way, we witness the idyllic way of life that epitomises parts of rural Burma in the form of small fishing villages that lie along the riverbanks. In the late afternoon we arrive in Pagan (Bagan), one of the most impressive archaeological wonders of Asia. (Due to the unpredictable nature of ferry operations on the Irrawaddy River between April and October, it is possible that some services may be cancelled. Some of these cancellations may take place at the last minute and often without warning. If this is the case it may be necessary to fly between Mandalay and Bagan. There will be no extra cost for this flight).
Overnight at Tharabar Gate Hotel, Bagan.

Day 6: Bagan – Tour (Breakfast)

Breakfast at the hotel. The sights of Pagan are explored from dawn to dusk. Nyaung U's lively market contrasts with the eerie silence of the plains littered with over 4000 structures, including Gawdawpalin, Thatbyinnyu, Ananda and Shwezigon - all names of temples and pagodas that bear testament to a glorious past. The area is also famous for producing lacquer-ware that is available in the stalls amidst the ruins. There is also a chance to do some of our exploration by horse and cart. Weather permitting, we may enjoy a breathtaking sunset view from one of the ruins.
Overnight at Tharabar Gate Hotel, Bagan.

Day 7: Bagan – Mt Popa (Breakfast)

Breakfast at the hotel. We drive for an hour before arriving at Mount Popa, an extinct volcano that is home to the local spirits or deities known as 'nat'. For the energetic, there is a chance to climb the 777 steps to the shrine at the top of the hill. The view from here is spectacular. Returning to Pagan, we visit a local village along the way to observe the lifestyle of the people. The afternoon is free to further explore this amazing area. You may hire a bicycle and enjoy your own exploration of the archaeological sites. Overnight at Tharabar Gate Hotel, Bagan

Day 8: Inle Lake (Breakfast)

Breakfast at the hotel. We board a plane and fly to Heho, which is situated in the Shan Plateau. From here, we drive through picturesque countryside and rolling hills to our hotel situated on Inle Lake not far from the main township, Nyaungshwe. We enjoy two nights staying at a lovely lakeside resort. On our way back we may stop over at some of the village houses to see the process of making traditional snacks. You will notice the weather is much cooler due to the high altitude. Overnight at Paradise Inle Resort, Inle Lake.

Day 9: Inle Lake (Breakfast)

Breakfast at the hotel. A full day is spent on the lake exploring the floating gardens and catching a glimpse of the local Intha fishermen who are famous for their unique 'leg-rowing' technique. These people are different from the Shans and they originate from the south of the country. The lake is also home to a wide array of bird-life including egrets, cranes, ducks, storks and birds of prey. Overnight at Paradise Inle Resort, Inle Lake.

Day 10: Inle Lake – Trekking (Breakfast/Dinner)

Breakfast at the hotel. After breakfast we transfer to the Indein ruins complex (approx. 45 minutes). There we will find the pagodas and stupas built in the 8th century. Here you can enjoy rows of shops along the corridor uphill or just marvel at the surroundings. After spending some time we will start our walk to Yankin, Pa O and Taung Yoe tribe villages (1.5km, approx. 45 minutes). Along the way we explore the mystery of more than 300 ancient stupas around one of the villages and then continue towards (1km, approx. 30 minutes) to a Buddhist monastery and head North to Naydaw (1.5km, approx45 minutes) to Taung Yoe ethnic tribe village through farm land and bamboo forest. From here turn to southwest (5km, approx. 3 hours) through the valley up and down to west Taung Mauk, Pa O village where it is another 20 minutes' walk to east Taung Mauk village. Finally we turn east through the valley to Indein (3km approx. 45 minutes) where we will meet our boat and return to hotel. This evening we enjoy a traditional Shan dinner and get to sample some of the local style culinary specialties.
Overnight at Paradise Inle Resort, Inle Lake.

Day 11: Heho - Yangon – Ngwe Saung Beach (Breakfast)

Breakfast at the hotel. In the morning we transfer to Heho Airport for the flight back to Yangon. Upon arrival we are met by our private vehicle and travel by road to Ngwe Saung beach. Turning our attention towards the delta region, we head west and drive for three-and-a-half hours to the port city of Bassein (Pathein), which is famous for its colourful hand-painted umbrellas. We see how these parasols are made on a visit to a local factory, before catching a ferry across the river and continuing on to the tropical paradise on the coast.
Overnight at Bay of Bengal, Ngwe Saung Beach.

Day 12 – 14: Ngwe Saung Beach (Breakfast)

2 breakfasts at the hotel.
Myanmar's little-known secret is its beautiful coastline fronting the Indian Ocean. At Ngwe Saung lies an unspoilt white sand beach, 15km long and bordered by tall swaying palms. We have a chance to relax for a couple of days, staying in the lush settings of the resort. Here we have the chance to swim in the waters of the warm, blue tropical sea. We can also visit small fishing villages and local markets, explore the countryside by bicycle and enjoy optional boat trips to the beautiful off-shore islands (cost not included). Overnight at Bay of Bengal, Ngwe Saung Beach.

Day 15: Ngwe Saung - Yangon (Breakfast)

Breakfast at the hotel. We depart after breakfast and drive for approximately four hours back to the capital. Along the way we stop at an elephant camp to observe these mighty animals at close quarters. (There is an optional elephant ride for an hour that takes you through a dense forest. Pay directly.) Upon arrival back in Yangon, check into hotel and be at leisure. Overnight at Trader's Hotel, Yangon.

Day 16: Yangon - Departure (Breakfast)

Breakfast at the hotel. The tour ends after breakfast with a transfer to the airport for your departure flight.

End of Programme