• Young Monk

Classic Myanmar Tour

Myanmar is slowly becoming a must-see destination for those attracted by the extraordinary Buddhist heritage and spectacular landscapes. The 'Land of the Golden Pagoda' is a virtually untouched country and you will be warmed by the genuine hospitality of its people.

Duration
6 days
Options
Private basis, Escorted
Start your journey
Balloons over Bagan

Trip highlights

  • Great introduction to the country
  • Explore colonial Yangon
  • Discover the temples of Bagan
  • Local markets and communities at Inle Lake

Upon arrival, transfer to your hotel for one night.

After a short rest, begin a sightseeing tour, including the old colonial-style city centre, Yangon harbour and gilded Sule Pagoda, dating back over 2,000 years followed by Bogyoke Market (closed on Public Holidays and Mondays), and a photo stop at the Karaweik Hall royal floating barge. The highlight for every visitor, Shwedagon Pagoda, is one of the world's most spectacular religious monuments, and is best viewed late afternoon when the light is at its most magical. The golden dome of the Shwedagon Pagoda rises 98 meters above its base, is covered with 60 tons of pure gold and is the very heart and soul of Buddhist Myanmar.

Suggested Accommodation

  • Shangri La Sule Hotel or similar

Transfer to the airport for your flight to Bagan, where over 2,000 temples and pagodas remain on this awe-inspiring plain. This morning, start your tour at the busy local market before visiting some of the most important pagodas and temples in Bagan, including Shwezigon Pagoda, Gu Byauk Gyi and the immediately recognizable Ananda Temple; one of the finest and largest temples with its 170 ft shimmering gold spire and four huge standing-Buddha images and numerous seated figures arranged around the interior gallery. Later, visit a lacquer craftsman's workshop before visiting Manuha Temple, Nanbaya Temple and Myingaba Gu Byuk Kyi Temple as you watch the sunset.

Suggested Accommodation

  • Tharabar Gate hotel or similar

After a short flight to Mandalay take a drive to Amarapura and take a stroll on U Bein Bridge, which at over a kilometre is believed to be the longest teak bridge in the world.

From here, visit picturesque Sagaing, perhaps the living centre of Buddhist faith in Myanmar today. The hills here are dotted with numerous pagodas and monasteries. In the afternoon, drive along the busy Ayeyarwady River where you see many boats loading goods. The visit Mahamuni Pagoda, home to a spectacular Buddha image covered with thick layers of gold leaves. Stop at local workshops to see Kalaga tapestries being made, gold leaf being beaten into paper-thin pieces.From here, travel to Kuthodaw Pagoda, where the Theravada Buddhist scriptures are inscribed on 729 marble slabs, giving rise to its nickname 'the world’s largest book'.

Next visit beautiful teak-carved Shwenandaw Monastery, the only Royal Palace building to survive World War II bombing. Atop Mandalay Hill lie glittering glass-studded temple walls which reflect the evening glow as you watch the sunset.

Suggested Accommodation

  • Mandalay Hill Resort (Superior) or similar

Transfer to the airport for your flight to Heho.

Transfer from Heho airport down into the valley to Nyaungshwe on the edge of Inle Lake and board your own local boat to take you to your hotel.

Inle Lake is simply magical; its calm waters are dotted with Intha stilt house villages, floating vegetable gardens and fishing canoes against the backdrop of the beautiful Shan Hills. Motorised boats are the means of transport across the lake although the Intha people get around in traditional flat-bottomed boats using a unique and skilful form of leg rowing. Continue from your hotel and travel by long-tailed boat across the lake to Indaing, at the western end of Inle for one of the most scenic trips on the lake. Passing through the busy village of Ywama, the largest on the lake, with many channels and tall teak houses on stilts. The boat takes you through a long channel where you watch the farmers cultivate their produce.

Disembark at the jetty and take a short walk through Indaing village to reach the 14th-18th century pagoda ruins of Nyaung Ohak. Many pagodas here remain charmingly unrenovated with plants and even small trees growing out of them. Returning to the river you have the opportunity to walk along a shady path for approximately 30 minutes to the Intha village of Sema, from here continue by boat downstream past Yethar village, watching local life on the banks.

Suggested Accommodation

  • Novotel Inle Myat Min (Junior Suite) or similar

Explore one of the 5-day markets (on market days only) to gain insight into the lifestyle of the ethnic Pa-O, Danu and Intha inhabitants who come to sell their goods. Later take a boat ride on picturesque Inle Lake to see the famous 'leg rowers', the typical floating gardens where fruit and vegetables are grown, local methods of fishing and village life. In the afternoon visit Phaung Daw Oo Pagoda, the holiest religious site in southern Shan State. Continue by boat to Nga Phe Kyaung Monastery, one of the oldest monasteries on the lake.

Suggested Accommodation

  • Novotel Inle Myat Min ( Junior Suite)

Transfer by boat to Nyaung Shwe and then proceed to Heho Airport for your flight to Yangon. Spend some time at leisure for sightseeing or shopping in Yangon before you transfer to the airport for your onward flight, or alternatively extend your stay in Myanmar.

Included

  • Accommodation as detailed in double or twin room with private facilities (alternative but similar hotels may be used at certain times of year)
  • Meals included as detailed.
  • Services of an English-speaking guide, transfers and tours on private basis.
  • International and internal flights as detailed.
  • All entrance fees and taxes as applicable.

Not included

  • International flights
  • Optional balloon flight over Bagan.
  • Visa fees.
  • Beverages.
  • Tips for the driver/guide.