Journey To An Ancient Land

Myanmar

11 - 29 September '21

19 Days 18 Nights

As an intrepid adventurer, I invite you to join me on this journey of culture and heritage exploration into the ancient land of magical Myanmar. Defined by its shimmering pagodas, unusual landscapes and unique culture it is still untouched by western influence.

Some of the highlights of the tour feature a beguiling introduction of Burmese characters from region to region. The itinerary takes you into enchanting cities like Yangon, Mandalay, temple paradise of Bagan, Inle Lake and the Intha People. You will feel the charming and pleasant weather of the hill town, Kalaw. See enshrined strands of Buddha's hair and other holy relics at Pindaya Cave.


A Culture and Heritage tour is a wonderful choice for first-time travelers to Mynamar who are interested in soaking up the core charm that Myanmar has to offer. 

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1 - Arrival Yangon (-)

Upon arrival at the airport, you will be met by our representative who will then escort you to your hotel. The rest of the day is for you to relax. Overnight at Yangon.

Shwedagon Pagoda
Handicrafts at Bogyoke Market
Interior of the Sula Pagoda
Emerald Church Yangon

Day 2 - Yangon Sightseeing (B)

After having your breakfast at the hotel, go sightseeing to the city center which will include Mahabandoola Park, Emerald church, City Hall, Independence Monument and take photos at Sule Pagoda. Walking around the area you will get the feel of ancient colonial times.

The tour extends to Bogyoke Market (Scott Market) where you can shop for handicrafts, jewelry, foodstuffs, clothes, and consumer goods. In the evening, we will go to the Shwedagon pagoda and explore the colorful temples, stupa, and statues that reflect the architecture era of 2600 years ago.

Visitors will experience the insider’s view of this magnificent symbol of the Buddhism of Myanmar people. Overnight at Yangon.

Day 3 - Yangon-Dala-Twante-Yangon (B)

Enjoy breakfast at the hotel and visit Dala by ferry boat (approximately 15 min). When we arrive in Dala, we start to explore Dala city by trishaw. This city offers the opportunity to see a regular and authentic Burmese Town going about its daily routines. You can experience the fishing village beside the river, the small local market and recycled houses.

 

From there, we will proceed to Twante by car for about an hour. Twante township is famous for its pottery workshop and is situated in the Ayeyarwaddy region. You will have an opportunity to observe the local craftsmen creating the pottery at the local factory. You will take a visit to the weaving workshop and Shwesandaw pagoda which is a landmark of the township and where the sacred hair of the Lord Buddha is enshrined.

 

Overnight at Yangon.

Dala Township Yangon
Pottery Workshop In Ayeyarwaddy Region
Shwesandaw Pagoda
Thatbyinnyu Temple

Day 4 - Yangon-Bagan by flight Sightseeing (B)

After breakfast, transfer to the domestic airport for departure to Bagan.

Enjoy the day at your leisure. In the evening, explore heritage sites, Bagan by horse-cart (this is an optional activity), and sightseeing to Thatbyinnyu Temple- a white stucco building, the highest temple in Bagan built by King AlaungSithu in mid-12 Century; Gawdawpalin. Enjoy a sunset on the platform of Bu Paya (Bu pagoda) on the banks of the mighty Ayeyarwaddy River with the backdrop of Tantkyitaung Hill. We enjoy our dinner at a local restaurant with a cultural show.

 

Overnight at Bagan. 

Day 5 - Bagan Sightseeing (B)

Enjoy breakfast at the hotel and explore the ancient city of Bagan with a visit to the colorful Nyaung U market where you can experience how the local people buy & sell fresh products. It provides a window into everyday life in Bagan.

 

Visit Shwezigon Pagoda which is the huge gold plated pagoda glimmering in the sun. The tour extends to Ananda temple which is the masterpiece of the Bagan era with the architecture using a Greek cross and Dhammanyangyi Temple which is the largest and a haunted temple at Bagan and is related to the tragic history of Bagan.

 

We will visit traditional lacquerware workshops.

 

Watching the sunset at Bagan is the highlight of this tour. Enjoy the sunset at a small hill where you can take beautiful sunset images.

 

Return back to the hotel and overnight at Bagan.

Nyaung U Market
Ananda Temple
Mt Popa Shrine
Mt Popa Shrine

Day 6 - Bagan-Popa Sightseeing (B)

Enjoy breakfast at the hotel.

 

We will drive to Popa (about 1 hour 30 min). Mt. Popa is a popular day trip from Bagan. 777 steps lead the way to reach the top of Mt. Popa and amazing views will take your breath away. Enjoy the vista of the countryside, including local people climbing the palm trees. Lunch at a local restaurant and then proceed to Sin Phyu Sin complex where the teaching of the Buddhist Scripture was initiated as the school for Sangha. Attend a traditional workshop at Popa.

 

Overnight at Bagan.

Day 7 - Bagan-Myaing (CBT site) Sightseeing (B)

Enjoy breakfast at the hotel.

 

Drive to Myaing Township, which is one of the community lodges in Myanmar, to explore the authenticity of the local people. Upon arrival, enjoy lunch prepared by villagers at a local community lodge. We will observe the production of “Thanakha” which is made from ground tree bark and a cosmetic paste, taste a home-made snack at a local home and enjoy a traditional dance. Visit a local farm. Drive back to Bagan and overnight there. 

 

Driving Time: Bagan to Myaing = 78.1 km (about 2-3 hours). 

Faces painted with Thanakha Paste

Day 8 - Bagan-Mandalay by private car (B/L/-)

Enjoy breakfast at your hotel and drive to Mandalay by private car (approximately 4 hours). Upon arrival, transfer to the hotel, and check-in for refreshments. The evening will be free to spend at your leisure.

 

Overnight at Mandalay.

Day 9 - Mandalay Sightseeing (B/L/-)

After breakfast, we will visit the Mahamuni Buddha Temple, a major pilgrimage site of Mandalay which was built in 1785 by King Bodawpaya.

 

Our tour extends to Shwe Nan Daw Kyaung (Golden Palace Monastery) where visitors can observe the wood sculptures in this area.

 

After that, we will go to a gold leaf workshop where visitors can witness the process of making Gold Leaf. Kuthodaw Pagoda, the world’s largest book, consisting of 720 marble slabs sculpted with the three baskets of Buddhist scriptures, a great photographic opportunity. Enjoy the sunset at U Bein teak Bridge where you can see the local people riding their bicycles and selling hand-made postcards. Enjoy dinner at your hotel. Overnight at Mandalay. 

 

Optional>> Sunset boat fees in U Bein Bridge -  USD 5 per pax

Wood Sculptures at the Golden Palace Monestary
U Bein Teak Bridge
Gold Leaf Workshop
Settawya Pagoda
Mingun Bell

Day 10 - Mandalay-Mingun Sightseeing (B)

Breakfast at the hotel.

 

Departing from Mandalay, you will discover the charms of old Burma as you take a journey through two of Myanmar's ancient capitals.

 

Drive to the jetty to watch the busy riverside activities and take a local riverboat to the ancient capital of Mingun (appr. 1 hour). Visit the Settawya Pagoda, with a footprint of the Buddha, walk to the huge Mingun Bell, the world’s largest ringing bell (it weighs 55555 viss). The visit the nearby unfinished MingunPahtodawgyi, a famous building.

 

Myatheindan (Hsinbyume) Pagoda, built by King Bagyidaw in 1816, three years before he succeeded Bodawpaya as King, the pagoda was constructed in memory of his senior wife the Hsinbyume princess.

 

In Mandalay, we will explore the Mandalay Royal Palace complex, where we can learn the history of the Burmese kingdom. Enjoy sunset at Mandalay hill.

 

Overnight at Mandalay.

Day 11 - Mandalay-Pyin Oo Lwin Sightseeing (B)

After breakfast at Hotel, drive to Pyin Oo Lwin (2 hrs), known as "Pan Myo Daw", it means "The City of Flowers" and is well known for its colonial-style houses with large compound and pine trees, and unique horse carriages in the town. Visit Pyin Oo Lwin Local Market and Chinese Temple.

 

Thereafter, visit Pwal Kaut Waterfall. There is a small market beside the waterfall where you can buy local products such as winest, strawberry jams, fruits, and flowers, etc. Be stunned by the natural beauty and breathtaking scenery of  Pwe Kauk. The National Kandawgyi Garden (formerly National Botanical Gardens) is located in the Alpine town about 1.5 km south of Pyin Oo Lwin, Myanmar. It was modeled after the Kew Gardens of England. It has three museums, the fossils museum, the petrified wood museum, and the butterfly museum. The gardens are well laid out among lakes and paths, and there is a beautiful collection of pond fish and lovely black and white swans. It is a popular picnic spot for the locals and one of the main attractions for tourists.

 

Dinner at a local restaurant in Pyin Oo Lwin and return back to Mandalay by coach. Overnight in Mandalay.

Kandawgyi Garden
Pyin Oo Lwin Local Market

Day 12 - Mandalay-Heho by flight-Kalaw sightseeing (B)

Enjoy breakfast at the hotel and transfer to the domestic airport for departure to Heho (flying time 35 minutes). From Heho, drive to Kalaw (1 hour). We will transfer to the hotel, check-in and enjoy some refreshments.

 

The evening will be free at your leisure. Overnight at Kalaw. 

Day 13 - Kalaw-Pindaya Sightseeing (B)

Enjoy your breakfast and in the early morning we will explore the Kalaw market. Thereafter we will drive to Pindaya (2 hours).

 

Pindaya which has many natural limestone caves, houses over 8000 Buddha images of various sizes. Visit Buddha Cave, it is also known as Shwe U Min Paya. 

After lunch, the tour extends to a local workshop where Shan paper and umbrellas are made. And drive back to the charming town of Kalaw.

 

In the evening, we will visit Thein Taung Monastery and Nee Paya, a gold lacquered bamboo Buddha.

 

Overnight in Kalaw. 

Kalaw, Mandalay
Mway Daw Kakku Paodas

Day 14 - Kalaw-Kakku-Taungyi-Kalaw (B)

Breakfast at Hotel.

 

After driving about 2:30 hours, the tour extends to Mway Daw Kakku Pagodas (Pa-Oh territory).

 

Here we can see over 2,400 Stupas which are adorned with well-preserved sculptures carved in stucco, some of which still show their original colors. A number of pagodas enshrine images of the Buddha and each has the tinkling bell on the top.

 

Drive back to Taunggyi and visit Shwe Phone Pwint Pagoda. This pagoda lies in the mountain ridge, from the east of Taunggyi. This religious monument highlights the spectacular and peaceful landscape.

 

Return to Kalaw and overnight there.

Mway Daw Kakku Paodas

Day 15 - Kalaw-Inle Lake Sightseeing (B)

Enjoy breakfast at the hotel and drive to Heho (1 hour).

 

Upon arrival, take a private motorboat to head out to Inle Lake, one of Myanmar’s most spectacular sights. Pass villages built on stilts over the lake, inhabited by the local Intha people. Observe the leg-rowing fishermen and see their floating gardens built up from strips of water hyacinth and mud and anchored to the bottom with bamboo poles.

 

Visit PhaungDawOo Pagoda, the lake’s main sanctuary, which contains five sacred Buddha images covered in gold leaf. Lunch at a local restaurant with traditional cuisine. Explore the local crafts of Inle Lake with a stop at the weaving village of Innpawkhone and a cheroot factory, where typical Burmese cigars are made by hand.

 

Overnight in Inle. 

Cluster of Pagodas at Indein Village

Day 16 - Indein sightseeing (B)

After breakfast at the hotel, we will be taking a boat trip to Indein village.

 

Indein village is small in size and located at the southwestern bank of the lake itself and it is popular for its ruined clusters of pagodas dating back to the 16th century. Explore the area on foot, strolling around ancient ruined pagodas, and wander through the beautiful Alaung Sitthou area.  Here you can climb the covered stairway to the top of a hill which is covered with a picturesque ancient stupa and has magnificent views of the lake below.

 

Overnight in Inle. 

Day 17 - Inle Free day (B)

Enjoy your breakfast at the hotel. Feel free to explore around Inle Lake in your own way. 

 

Optional Sightseeing >> visit to Red Mountain Vineyard to taste the local wine. 

Day 18 - Inle –Yangon by flight (B)

Enjoy breakfast at hotel and transfer to domestic airport for departure to Yangon. Time at leisure at Yangon. 

Day 19 - Yangon Departure (B)

Enjoy breakfast at your hotel. The rest of the time is at your leisure until the transfer to Yangon International Airport for departure.

End of Tour

Accommodation

Yangon

Jasmine Palace Hotel (Superior room)

https://www.jasminepalacehotel.com/

Bagan

The Hotel @ Tharabar Gate (Deluxe Room)

www.tharabargate.com/

Mandalay

The Hotel by Red Canal

(Rakhine Room or Kachin Room)

https://www.hotelredcanal.com/room/

Inle

Novotel Inle Myat Min Hotel (Junior Suite)

https://www.accorhotels.com/gb/hotel-9395-novotel-inle-lake-myat-min/index.shtml?adults=&children=&nights=&dateIn=

Kalaw

Kalaw Heritage Hotel (4* star) 

(Superior Room with Garden View)

https://www.kalawheritagehotel.com/

Cost of Tour

Rate per person sharing:

USD2,650

estimated, to be confirmed

Supplements:

Single: USD770

estimated, to be confirmed

Payment Terms:

  • 50% of cost upon booking

  • 50% 45 days prior to arrival in Myanmar

Cancellation Terms:

  • 45 days prior to arrival in Myanmar: Nil, after deducting charges

  • 30 days prior to arrival in Myanmar: 50% of total billing

  • 20 days or less prior to arrival in Myanmar: No refund

Inclusions and Exclusions

Special Notes

Inclusions:

  • Accommodation in Double/Twin sharing rooms

  • 18 Breakfast

  • 2 Lunch

  • All entrance fees as specified in the program

  • Domestic Airfares 3 x flights: Yangon-Bagan, Mandalay-Heho, Heho(Inle)-Yangon

  • Private Transportation by air-conditioned vehicles(saloon)

  • Services of English speaking station guide fee (difference guides in each city)

  • 2 bottles of mineral water and 2 snow towel per day per pax on sightseeing days

  • Private boat fees in Inle Lake

Exclusions:

  • Early check-in and late check-out from the hotel

  • Optional for Ballooning in Bagan 

  • Visa Fees

  • Compulsory Tips (USD 5.00 per pax per day for local guide & Coach driver)

  • International Airfares

  • Meals (Lunch & Dinner), other than specified on the itinerary

  • Museum Entrance Fees and Other Additional Entrance Fees

  • Beer, Soft Drink and PH7 at local restaurants

  • Travel insurance

  • Expenditure of personal nature, such as porter charges, camera fees, drinks, souvenirs, laundry, etc.

  • Services not listed in above inclusions

  • Tour Fare may change according to certain change in exchange rate. 

  • Tour Fare may change without prior notice. 

Special Notes

Mich Immelman

I am a specialist tour operator with Curious Journeys. We operate from South Africa. With the assistance of my partners in India and South East Asia, I offer fully inclusive group tours, private tours, and tailor-made services

My specialist destinations are: India, Nepal, Vietnam, and Myanmar

Whether it is a first visit to a region or a return visit to explore the area in greater depth, I will put together the perfect tour for the traveller

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