We Love —
- This is a real once in a lifetime opportunity to visit an untouched, spiritual destination - see a new culture and meet people from different ways of life on this private tour!
- Relatively unexplored by tourists, our tour offers a unique opportunity to discover the many hidden treasures of this stunning country
- Explore the traditional floating villages of Inle Lake and marvel at one of the world's most spectacular religious monuments, the glittering golden Shwedagon Pagoda in Yangon
Here to Help —
Are you booking 35 days in advance and spending over £500? No need to pay in full today! Just select the 30% deposit option on our payment page (terms & conditions apply).
For any additional information on this offer or assistance in making your reservation please call one of our dedicated team on 0844 8262098 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Opening hours are Monday to Friday 08:00 – 21:00 and Saturdays & Sundays from 09:00 – 17:30.
Your Destination —
Get ready to skim over jade lakes, amble by horse carriage through golden plains and hustle through city streets in a rickshaw as you delve into one of the most astonishing countries in all of Asia.
This private tour takes you on a journey from breathtaking ancient cities to Buddhist shrines, with diversions away from the main sites and into the heart of the country.
Admire architectural marvels, discover different cultures and learn the secrets behind local arts and crafts on a journey to see the very best Myanmar has to offer.
Your Itinerary —
Upon arrival, you will be greeted by your Guide who will accompany you as you transfer to the hotel.
Yangon, formerly known as Rangoon, is a relatively quiet and charming city. Its impressive colonial and spiritual heritage makes it one of the most fascinating cities in Southeast Asia.
After lunch we’ll visit Kyaukhtatgyi Pagoda, home to a 70-meter long reclining Buddha. A visit to Kyaukhtatgyi provides a great overview of Buddhism with murals depicting the life of Buddha, the feet of the statue carved with traditional symbols and often many locals gathering to pay homage and pray.
Continue to a local tea shop for a chance to experience an integral part of Burmese life: drinking tea! Select from an array of snacks and enjoy a coffee or tea as you sit amid businessmen, friends and families who gather at the tea shop to socialize or conduct business.
Next your guided tour goes to Kandawagyi Park, one of central Yangon’s greenest spots. Here you will see the glittering Karaweik barge, a replica of the royal barge, and the vast lake with views of Shwedagon in the background. Depending on the day of your visit Kandawgyi may be busy with local families who come here on the weekend to relax in the fresh air.
From here, continue to Shwedagon Pagoda the most revered Buddhist temple in Myanmar. Although the origins of the pagoda are unclear, the local legend states that the original structure was built 2500 years ago then renovated several times until taking its current shape in the 15th century. The 8-sided central stupa is 99 meters tall and gilded with gold leaf and is surrounded by 64 smaller stupas and your guide will show you around the massive complex, explaining why this temple is so revered. Enjoy breathtaking views of the golden stupa from this vantage point.
Overnight in Yangon.
Distances and journey time:
Yangon Airport to Yangon city centre (20 km): 30 – 60 mins
Day 2: Yangon (Breakfast)
Today is at your leisure to explore on your own.
Overnight in Yangon.
After breakfast at the hotel, transfer to the airport for a flight to Bagan (Nyaung Oo).
From the 11th to 13th centuries, when Bagan was the capital of Myanmar, the rulers constructed thousands of huge stupas and temples many of which are still standing today on the banks of the Irrawaddy River.
On arrival, your journey begins with a visit to an elevated temple from where you will have a panoramic view of the magnificent plains of Bagan. Continue to the colorful Nyaung Oo Market where every day the locals come to buy and sell fresh produce and other goods before visiting the golden stupa of Shwezigon Pagoda for an introduction in to Bagan’s rich history. Then, visit to nearby Wetkyi-In Gubyaukgyi, a cave temple with exquisite jataka mural paintings and the elegant Htilominlo Temple noted for its fine plaster carvings and glazed sandstone decorations.
This afternoon begin with a visit to a traditional lacquer ware workshop where you can observe the production of one of Myanmar’s best-known handicrafts. From here you can decide to visit more temples, or return to your hotel to relax.
In the late afternoon, travel by horse cart for a tour passing Thatbyinnyu, the highest temple in Bagan, massive Dhammayangyi Temple, noted for its remarkable brickwork, and Sulamani Temple.
Enjoy an unforgettable sunset over the plains from the upper terrace of one of the temples.
Overnight in Bagan.
Distances and journey time:
Nyaung U Airport to New Bagan (12 km): 20 mins
Day 4: Bagan (Breakfast)
After breakfast, transfer to the bike depot to enjoy a morning cycling through Bagan’s magnificent landscape. After a bike fitting and trip briefing, the adventure begins. Cycling times and distances may be adjusted according to fitness levels. A support vehicle will be provided.
Beginning with an easy ride along New Bagan’s main road, the leisurely outing will eventually pass through Tharabar Gate, venturing into the archaeological zone.
Visit a few of Bagan’s main temples like Dhammayangyi, the largest built by King Narathu in the 12th century, and Ananda, famous for its four Buddha images. Depending on time and interest, there’s the option to explore some lesser known temples around the complex. While riding through the plains discover a traditional village, where it is possible to learn how local livelihoods have remained unchanged for years, from using earthen kilns to create pottery to hand-pressing peanuts and sesames for oil.
Afternoon at leisure
Overnight in Bagan.
Early this morning transfer to the airport for the flight to Mandalay.
Upon arrival, begin your sightseeing tour of Mandalay with a visit to Mahamuni Pagoda. This pagoda is home to one of the country’s most revered Buddha images which, over the years, have been covered with gold leaf giving it an almost ‘lumpy’ texture. Mandalay is well known for its skilled craftsmen and as you tour traditional workshops, you will learn more about the city’s cottage industries. Observe the production of wood carvings, kalaga tapestries, and gold-leaf where the techniques remained unchanged from those used centuries ago to craft items for the Royal Court.
This afternoon, continue your tour of Mandalay with a visit to Kuthodaw Pagoda, whose 729 marble stone slabs of Buddhist scriptures have earned it the title ‘World’s Biggest Book’. Continue to Shwenandaw Monastery, the only remaining building from the 19th century Royal Palace. This grand teak building is known for its exquisite woodcarving.
Head to the top of Mandalay Hill as the sun begins to set to enjoy magnificent views of the city and Irrawaddy River.
Overnight in Mandalay.
Distances and journey time:
Mandalay Airport to Mandalay city centre (41 km): 60 mins
Day 6: Mandalay (Breakfast)
After breakfast at the hotel, depart for an excursion around Mandalay to explore the former capitals of Ava, Sagaing and Amarapura.
This morning, cross a bridge over the Irrawaddy River to Sagaing. Covered with 600 white-painted pagodas and monasteries, Sagaing Hill is widely regarded as the religious center of Myanmar. It is home to 3,000 monks and 100 meditation centers and you will visit pagodas such as Swan Oo Pon Nya Shin and U Min Thone Sae.
We’ll also visit Sagaing’s local market, a typical Burmese market that few tourists visit. Here you will find a range of items for sale including locally made pottery, silver and other handicrafts. We will also stop at a small pottery village to see the process of making the ubiquitous water pots found throughout Myanmar.
Then continue south of the city to Ava, the capital from 14th to 18th centuries, where a short ferry ride will take us across the river to where our horse and carriage are waiting. Visit the old wooden Bagaya Monastery and the remains of the Royal Palace and Fort. There are many small villages located amid Ava’s ruins and as you travel by horse and cart you’ll get a glimpse of local life in the Burmese countryside. We’ll stop for lunch in Ava before returning to our car.
Return toward the city and stop at Amarapura, a former capital whose name means ‘City of Immortality’. First visit a silk weaving workshop. After touring this tranquil site, continue to U Bein Bridge for a walk along this 200 year-old teak bridge. The bridge was constructed of 984 teak posts that were once part of the deserted Inwa Palace and it is 1.2 kilometers in length making it the world’s longest teak span. Enjoy a stroll along the bridge and the fabulous views of the surrounding farms and streams.
Return to Mandalay late this afternoon.
Overnight in Mandalay.
After breakfast, transfer to Mandalay Airport for a flight to Heho. From Heho, a scenic one-hour drive leads to Nyaung Shwe, the gateway village to Inle Lake. Along the way, stop at the wooden Shwe Yan Pyay Monastery which features beautiful carvings and a collection of Buddha images.
Upon arrival in Nyaung Shwe, you’ll continue by local trishaw down to the bustling canal which is a hive of activity in the morning as boats from the lake come in to unload tomatoes and other vegetables for distribution to the markets around the country. Watch as baskets laden with produce are transferred from boats to trucks and bikes.
Hop back on the trishaw and wind through quiet streets. Make a stop at the ‘tomato house’, a warehouse-like structure where the tomatoes are sorted and priced for sale. Then continue past some of the many monasteries and nunneries in the town, stopping for photos as you go.
After lunch, you’ll head to the mountain bike depot. First, famlarize yourself with your mountain bike before setting off on a ride through town to the outskirts of Nyaung Shwe, where concrete buildings give way to their bamboo precursors. The streets become shadier and farms line the roads. Stop for photos and village visits along the way.
A short uphill ride is the final leg before reaching Red Moutain Estate, a collabartion between local Pa-Oh and a French vinter. You’ll take a tour of their wine-making facilities before settling down at their hilltop restaurant for a tasting. Afterwards, cycle back to Nyaung Shwe to board a boat for you Inle lake hotel.
Overnight on Inle Lake
Distances and journey time:
Heho Airport to Nyaung Shwe (28 km): 45 mins
Nyaung Shwe Jetty to Hotel on Inle Lake (10 – 20 km): 30 – 60 mins
Day 8: Inle Lake - Indein (Breakfast)
Your guide will greet you at your hotel this morning to embark on your Inle Lake day trip. Board your private motorboat (on board are cushioned wooden chairs, lifejackets, umbrellas- for sun and wind protection, and blankets in the winter months)
We’ll start with a visit to the morning market, which rotates locations on a 5-day basis. (Note: there are no markets on full moon or dark moon days) This daily market attracts people from all over the lake’s shores to buy and sell their wares- if you are lucky you may see Pa-Oh, Inthar and Shan people in their traditional outfits. Wander amid the stalls where your guide will explain the local produce and goods for sale.
Then continue across the lake, passing through villages with stilted houses and floating gardens built up from strips of water hyacinth and mud and anchored to the bottom with bamboo poles. You will also see the leg‐rowing fishermen who steer their boats with incredible balance.
We make our way to Phaung Daw Oo Pagoda, the lake’s main sanctuary, which contains 5 sacred Buddha images and houses royal barges used during the pagoda’s annual festival.
Proceed to the village of Inpawkhone to observe the traditional silk weaving techniques of Inthar people. Inpawkhone is also known for weaving with the stems of lotus flowers, a time consuming process that results in high quality materials famous throughout the country. We also visit a cheroot factory where local Burmese cigars are rolled by hand.
This afternoon we will travel to Indein, on the southwestern shores of the lake. The boat will travel down a small canal leading to the Pa-oh village of Indein. Explore the area on foot, strolling around the village and wander through the beautiful Alaung Sitthou area. Alaung Sitthou is filled with picturesque stupas and has magnificent views of the lake.
Should time allow, we’ll stop at Inthar Heritage House to learn more about the history and culture of the lake’s indigenous people and enjoy a delicious coffee and cake (snack break not included).
Day 9: Inle Lake At lesiure (Breakfast)
Today is free at your leisure to enjoy the lake and its environs.
We can arrange a full day on the lake with a guide to visit the morning markets, villages and other sites.
Overnight in Inle Lake.
Day 10: Inle Lake – Heho – Yangon - Departure (Breakfast)
This morning transfer to the Heho airport for your flight to Yangon. Connect to your onward international flight.
Your Hotels —
This offer is based on a bed and breakfast stay throughout.
Chatrium Hotel Royal Lake Yangon shines as one of the city’s topmost hotels for pure luxury and rich colonial-style heritage.
Situated among lush greenery and beside the famous Kandawgyi Lake, views are simply stunning and spectacular. Every guestroom is spaciously designed and furnished to reflect the luxurious surroundings, some with breathtaking views of Shwedagon Pagoda.
Choose from six restaurants and bars for delicious dining, relax by our beach-styled swimming pool, work-out at the Fitness Centre and rejuvenate at Nemita Spa.
Mandalay, the former capital city of the Myanmar Kingdom, is a spectacular destination for historical and cultural travellers. Mandalay Hill Resort lies at the foot of Mandalay Hill with a panoramic view of a myriad of pagodas and faces the distinctive architecture of the Royal Palace and its beautiful moat.
Your visit enhanced by the fun-loving hospitable people of Myanmar whose lives remain simple and relaxed will become treasured and timeless memories. Just one hour by air from Yangon and twenty minutes flight from Bagan, Mandalay lies within reach of some of most remarkable archaeological sites in the world.
The hotel offers a buffet and a la carte restaurant, lounge, cafe, and well-equipped fitness centre.
Drawing on the rich traditions of Myanmar’s Bagan region, Areindmar Hotel is nestled among the temples of New Bagan, just south of the city walls of the ancient capital.
Featuring 50 deluxe rooms around a large, leafy central courtyard, Areindmar is designed for travellers looking for an oasis of green to return to after exploring the wonders of this historic area.
The spacious rooms are flawlessly executed, combining modern amenities with traditional touches, such as local artworks and handmade teak and bronze furnishings.
The restaurant offers a variety of Asian, European and local cuisine, while the poolside bar is the perfect place to relax after a day among the temples.
Be your own captain on this stunning new boat-shaped ''floating'' room and enjoy the splendid view of the misty Shan Mountains. Well-appointed 70sqm ''cabins'' with separate shower & bathtub will make your stay cozy and comfortable. Start your day with a scrumptious breakfast on the restaurant terrace, located directly above the water, and feel the soothing atmosphere of Inle Lake.
After an exciting day on Inle Lake take a swim in the new pool surrounded by the lake or relax in our natural hot spring Jacuzzis or treat yourself with a massage in the Padonma Spa ...
Your Journey —
Flights: The flights included are with either a scheduled or no-frills airline and are subject to live availability and prices can change. You can choose your preferred departure times during the booking process. Please select your flight options carefully as departure and arrival airports may differ.
Transfers: Private transfers are included throughout.