The Heritage of Myanmar
Be succumbed to the charm of gilded Buddhist monuments and the surreal beauty of its unspoiled beaches. This tour takes you through from modern cosmopolitans to ancient towns, from commercial centers to cultural hearts.
After checking in at your hotel, set out to blend with longyi-cladding locals ushering towards the golden pagoda in the middle of the city. Fight for the way from the fervor crowd and head towards the Pansodan Gallery, the creeping 20th-century museum. Stroll around the Kandawgyi Lake to watch the Karaweik, a golden barge in the shape of a mythical bird. As the dusk settles on the city, prepare for an unexpected awe as the sight of Shwedagon Pagoda renders you speechless. The pagoda represents an epitome of Buddhist worship as Myanmar people centres their life around this monument. Another renowned monument, Chaukhtatgyi, also demonstrate Myanmar’s everlasting obsession with Buddhism as the seventy-meter reclining Buddha statue. Overnight at the hotel in Yangon.
Visit the Bogyoke Market, formerly Scott Market, where you can find a variety of traditional products. Then take the local “circular train” for a 3-hour ride through the city and the rural areas around it. You will have the chance to observe the vibrant and colorful life of local people. In the afternoon, boat transfer to Dalah, a small village on the other side of the Yangon River, ride in a rickshaw and visit of a candle factory. Back to Yangon, spare some time to dig into the relics of Downtown Yangon, the treasure that the city often underrated. Yangon, in contrast to its nickname “City of Golden Pagodas”, hosts the largest number of colonial buildings in Southeast Asia under the British Domination Era. Overnight at the hotel in Yangon.
Departure for Kyaikhtiyo located 200 km south of Yangon, in the Mon state. You will enjoy driving through Burmese countryside and admire the peaceful landscapes. On arrival, you have to take a truck on a winding road (about 1 hour to 1h30) to go to the top and then climb to the Golden Rock by a narrow and winding path used by pilgrims. Situated at 1000 meters, this huge rock is covered with gold and has a small stupa at the top, where the Buddha’s hair relic is enshrined. It perpetually appears to be on the verge of rolling down the hill. It is a well-known pilgrimage site for Burmese Buddhists. Overnight at hotel in Kyaikhtiyo.
Back to Yangon, on the way stop in Bago. Originally located at the edge of the eponymous river, Bago has been for centuries the capital of the Mon kingdom and has undergone many vicissitudes. Visit the imposing Shwemawdaw Pagoda with its golden stupa, higher than the Shwedagon Pagoda in Yangon, and the large reclining Buddha Shwethalyaung which dates back to the 10th century. Stroll through the streets and discover the weaving workshops. Arrive in Yangon in the late afternoon. Free night to relax. Overnight at hotel in Yangon.
Fly to Heho and have perfect two days in Inle lake. Have some rest and be ready to explore Inle lake by boat in the afternoon. 20 km long, this lake whose name means “lake of 4 villages” is home to Inthas people that built villages with houses on stilts along the lake. Enjoy the charming villages and floating farms, soak up the refreshing atmosphere and explore the authentic life activities of the local including the unique way of rowing, unique techniques of growing early crops (tomatoes, lettuces and pumpkins). Visit the Monastery of jumping cats, housing a superb collection of typical Buddha statues of Shan region and Phaung Daw Oo Pagoda, the main sanctuary of the lake if you are interested in. Overnight at the hotel in Inle.
After breakfast, depart for the tour of a local market or a floating market (if the day coincides with market days)which is held every 5 days on the water, gathering people from the villages and towns in the region are held either on the lake or on the mainland. Discover the authentic life of the locals. Continue to a canoe tour to Indein, enjoy the riverside landscapes along the picturesque stream where water buffaloes are bathing with tranquil villages nearby. Climb up the hill where the ancient pagodas complex Indein has been located since 17th century. Some pagodas are being restored, but most of them are still in the abandoned condition like ‘Indiana Jones’. Overnight at the hotel in Inle.
You are transferred to the airport for the morning flight to Mandalay. Mandalay is not only home to temples and monasteries but also considered the city of royalty. You will experience Royal Palace, the last palace built by Burmese Royals, exploring impressive structures of buildings here, particularly, watch tower, tooth relic tower, Supreme Court building, Great Audience hall, Lion Throne room, Glass palace. Then move on the day trip to Shwenandaw monastery, the typical architecture of Burmese with intricate carvings on teak wood. Discover Kuthodaw pagoda, the world’s largest book with 729 carved marble headstones and Mahamuni pagoda with the famous revered Buddha image 4 meters high. Free night for your own city discovery. Overnight at the hotel in Mandalay.
Brighten your morning by touring Mandalay Jade Market that sells and polishes jades of different sizes and colors before boating to Mingun. Sightsee the Pahtodawgyi ruins, widely known as the largest pagoda built in red bricks – if it had been accomplished, the world largest bells – Mingun Bell and Hsinbyume Pagoda. Move on the trip to Sagaing by car. Here you climb to the highest hill where U Ponya pagoda is located. U Ponya is one of most significant pagodas in Sagaing. From above, you have a bird’s eye view of hundreds of pagodas and monasteries perched on the hills bordering Irrawaddy. Late afternoon, you are transferred to Amarapura, walking on U Bein bridge. This is the oldest and longest teak footbridge in the planet, and one of best places to watch magnificent sunsets in Myanmar. Overnight at the hotel in Mandalay.
Leaving Mandalay, this day you move to the Northwest of Mandalay and visit Monywa where you will discover imposing religious sites. Specifically, visit Thanbuddhay pagoda that contains over 500,000 sculptures, relics and other sacred objects; Bodi Tataung where the gigantic lying Buddha and standing Buddha are located. Then you transfer to discover the fascinating caves of Po Win Taung that were likely inhabited from the beginning of human appearance in Myanmar. Some of these caves today are filled with paintings and antique Buddhas. By the end of the day, you take a rickshaw ride in the city center. Overnight at the hotel in Monywa.
Saying goodbye to Monywa, the city of imposing religious architectures, you depart for Pakokku. This is an important commercial center of tobacco and Thanaka in Magway region. In Pakokku, you visit a cheroot factory (one kind of Burmese handmade cigarette) and a local market that sells Thanaka (the secret skincare treatment from Myanmar mainly for women and children). From Pakkoku, move down along Irrawaddy river by boat to Bagan. Upon arrival, you transfer to your hotel. Overnight at the hotel in Bagan.
Prepare your luggage carefully for the flight to Bagan, a must-see destination during your culture trip of Burma. Day dedicated to the discovery of Bagan, the most impressive archaeological site in Asia. About forty kilometers from the left bank of the legendary Irrawaddy River, over 2000 temples, pagodas and stupas of all sizes and shapes emerge here and there, out of sight. Visit the site in a horse-drawn carriage, and among others, the famous temple of Ananda and that of Thatbyinnyu which dominates the other temples of Bagan. By late afternoon, Pyathatguy pagoda is the perfect place to watch the sunset over Bagan. Overnight at hotel in Bagan.
In addition to the remarkable temple complex, Bagan is also well-known for its authentic life of the residents in the villages around. In the morning, marvel at the grand display of earthly life which seasons the arid region of Bagan with its hustle and bustle. Gasp at the great selection of agricultural products on sales at Nyaung Oo Market where people from nearby regions come to trade. Listen to conversations humming like a bee hive in action and experience an authentic market representative of those in rural Asia. After sampling a taste of traditional markets, take a tour to the famous villages of handicrafts of oxcart-wheels making and pottery-producing named Min Nan Thu and Phwa Saw where you can observe their crafts and get your hands dirty as well.
Take a flight to escape the heat of the central Myanmar to go to Ngapali Beach. Upon arrival at Thandwe airport, hop on the bus which will take you to your hotel. Be welcomed by the premier beach escape, which ranks among the finest in Asia. Gasp at the sight of rock nestling under the crystal clear water which meets the sky at an infinite point. As the sun retires and the light display is tinged with red lights, a BBQ by the seaside seems a good idea for you and your friends. Listen to the wind shushing through the palm trees and the waves whispering their eternal songs.
During your two days in Ngapali, enjoy the tranquility of one of the most unspoiled beach in Asia with long sandy coast and green palms. Overnight at the hotel in Ngapali.
(*) Some seaside activities that are highly recommended to help you perfect the memorable trip in Myanmar:
– Swimming and bathing to enjoy the turquoise water
– Spice up your day with a hot-air balloon trip to get the view over the vast area of Ngapali.
– Visit the nearby fishery villages to get an eyeful of their traditional fishing techniques and cuisine.
– At night, start a bonfire on the beach and collect driftwood or scattered stones to make some vintage seating.
Free day for relaxation and shopping. Depending on your schedule, transfer to the airport for the flight back to Yangon and your departure flight. End the 16-day trip in Myanmar.
|Number of people||6 pax||4 pax||2 pax|
|Price per person||$519||$615||$810|