10-Day Myanmar Cultural Discovery

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Tour type

Tour Level: Relaxed / Easy

Tour Comfort: Standard

Tour Period: 10 Days

tour highlights

  • Experience the local insights
  • Explore Yangon with the world-famous Shwedagon pagoda and learn about the daily life of the local people
  • Chinatown in Yangon is an area teaming with food and for many the best starting point for exploration is 19th street
  • Touring in Bagan to see the most important and famous pagodas and temples
  • Fun activities such as optional Balloon ride, Cultural show, trishaw ride, horse cart ride, home host dinner
  • Tour around Mandalay its old kingdoms and artisans, Amarapura with 150-year-old U Bein teak bridge
  • Upstream boat trip on Ayeyarwady River to Mingun
  • Take boat trip at Inle through the floating gardens and vibrant colors
  • 2Days/1Night hiking in Inle Lake area with overnight at a monastery
  • Crossing Yangon River by local ferry to enjoy the views of local rural life in Dala

tour details

During this tour you will discover beautiful landscape, enchanting people and you can mingle with them during the visit to the city Yangon, enchanting Bagan and magic Lake Inle will give you a memorable stay in the Golden Land.

Meet on arrival at Yangon International Airport and transfer to hotel (check in time is 14:00 hours).
In the afternoon, start your introductory half-day tour which takes visitors to the colonial-historical centre of Yangon, a photo stop to the Karaweik Hall royal floating barge; and the gilded Sule Pagoda, dating back over 2,000 years. Proceed to Shwedagon Pagoda, one of the world's most spectacular religious monuments in the world rises majestically over Singuttara Hill to the city Yangon, casting its golden gleam over the low-lying capital. This 2,500-years old structure, which contains the relics of four Buddhas, is the guardian temple of Yangon and the most sacred site for the people of Myanmar. Start from the Eastern entrance of Shwedagon pagoda and walk through the small shops where monk accessories, Buddha statues, flowers etc. are sold. The entrance is always very busy with sellers and local pilgrims. You'll learn about the daily life of the local people who reside in the immediate surroundings and gain a deeper insight into the Buddhist religion as you provide offerings to the monks. Then, walk along the pagoda platform clockwise, as is tradition, around the main Pagoda. During this interactive walking tour of the pagoda, explore walkways and hidden gems that are unknown to most visitors. Stopping in one of the pavilions to prayer, you might get a chance to meet a Buddhist monk and talk about Buddhism and meditation or simply contemplate. Continue through the back door of Shwedagon Pagoda and discover its fascinating history. As you walk the magnificent grounds and interior and even you can visit a local fortune-teller (if time permits) and learn about the ancient spiritual beliefs.
After a visit to the Pagoda your guide will accompany you to 19th Street, this small side street in Chinatown comes to life at dusk as locals gather here after work to enjoy cold draft beers and a BBQ. Find a busy stall and order a cold Myanmar Beer (cost included) and enjoy the hustle and bustle of this popular spot. Your driver will be available to return you to your hotel or take you to a nearby restaurant for dinner. Return to hotel.
Accommodation at Rose Garden Hotel (Balcony Deluxe Room) or similar, Yangon
Transfer to Yangon Airport for domestic flight to Bagan. Upon arrival in Bagan, proceed on a sightseeing tour, starting with the busy local market and continuing with visits to a diverse selection of the most important pagodas and temples such as Shwezigon Pagoda, built by King Anawrahta in the early 11th century. See 13th Century frescoes adorning the corridors of Kyansittha 'Cave' Temple. Continue to Gubyaukgyi (Wetkyi In village), another 'cave' temple with fine frescoes of the 'Jataka Tales'. Next stop is Htilominlo, the last Bamar style temple built in Bagan, with old murals and friezes. Visit the Taungphi village to see old monasteries, which have beautiful Khone Baung dynasty frescoes. Lunch at Ayeyarwaddy River Terrace Restaurant.
In the afternoon, continue visit to Ananda Temple, a whitewashed masterpiece of Mon architecture with four standing Buddhas, and the adjacent brick monastery from the early Bagan era with well-preserved murals. Make a photo stop at the tallest temple measuring 61 meters - Thatbyinnyu known as 'temple of omniscience' and dating from 1144. Continue to Mingalazedi, the last of the large Pagodas built in the 13th Century, representing the pinnacle of Bamar pagoda architecture. Enjoy sunset at one of the monuments along Ayeyarwady River. Transfer to Dandaree show.
Dandaree is the most impressive show in Bagan. The show will take place at the Bagan Golden Palace, located near the entrance of old Bagan Tharabar Gate. This contemporary show is an artistic creation with the stunning live performance telling the stories of Myanmar from glorious Bagan era until present day. The show is produced by a world class creative producer.
Accommodation at Thazin Garden Hotel (Deluxe Room) or similar, Bagan
Optional: There is no better or more spectacular view of the ancient kingdom of Bagan than from a hot air balloon. This world-famous archaeological site of more than a thousand Buddhist temples scattered over a plain is at its best when seen from a bird's eye vantage, as the sun comes up gently over the Ayeyarwady River.
You will be collected from your hotel in Balloons Team's bus, and provided with a light breakfast and safety briefing while the balloons inflate, before enjoying a dawn flight lasting just under one hour. Flights operate daily from October through March.

This morning we have time to explore the Myinkaba village area by horse cart. First we visit Gubyaukgyi Temple admiring the fine stuccowork. We continue to Nanpaya temple, built in the Mon style with intricate stone carvings, and said once to have been Manuha's residence. See the four Buddha images in Manuha Pagoda and later stop at Myazedi stupa to see Myanmar's "Rosetta Stone", bearing inscriptions written in four languages.
Then, transfer to Welcome Food House for Lunch. Before Lunch Myanmar Traditional dance with art will make you joyous memorial experience during visit in Bagan. Afterwards enjoy Lunch and return to hotel.
Afternoon at leisure.
Accommodation at Thazin Garden Hotel (Deluxe Room) or similar, Bagan
Transfer to Bagan Airport for domestic flight to Mandalay. From the airport 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. Lunch at Minn Wun Valley Restaurant.
In the afternoon, drive along the busy Ayeyarwady River where you see many boats loading goods as well as women washing laundry. 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, we go 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.
Accommodation at Mandalay City Hotel (Deluxe Room) or similar, Mandalay
07:30 You are picked up from your hotel for a touring ride in a classic Mandalay 'sidecar' (a chauffeur-pedalled bicycle with a passenger seat) to explore the best snacks that Mandalay has to offer. When you try the famous morning noodle dish mohinga, Myanmar pancake, samosa, Mandalay salad, Shan noodles and numerous sweet snacks, you'll understand why Myanmar people walk around with a smile on their faces all day. Our resident food enthusiasts will explain the detail and some of the secrets behind this delicious food while you sample the best that Mandalay has to offer. The tour concludes at 11:30 hours and return to your hotel. Lunch at Golden Duck Restaurant.
In the afternoon, board your boat and travel upstream on the Ayeyarwady River from Mandalay to Mingun (11 Km, about one hour). The river is always busy - small longtail boats, bamboo rafts and ferries carry goods up and down the river. Visit the Mingun Bell, which at 87 tons is the world's largest intact bronze bell. Continue to the beautiful Hsinbyume (Ma Thein Tan) Paya and the unfinished, mighty Mingun Pagoda (built to be the worlds biggest) before returning downriver to Mandalay. In the evening, transfer to local house to have home host dinner.
Accommodation at Mandalay City Hotel (Deluxe Room) or similar, Mandalay.
Transfer to Mandalay Airport for domestic 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 the lake. Lunch at Inle Heritage House.
Continue after lunch 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; enter a long, often tree-lined canal, either side of which farmers cultivate their land against the backdrop of the Shan Hills. Disembark at the jetty and walk for 15 minutes 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, making the area very atmospheric. A covered walkway popular with souvenir stallholders leads up to Shwe Inn Thein Paya, a complex of weather-beaten 17th - 18th century zedi; some newly reconstructed. Returning to the river you have the possibility of walking along a lovely shady path for 30 minutes to the Intha village of Sema. From here continue by boat downstream past Yethar village, watching local life on the banks and birds in the trees until re-joining the Lake near Phaung Daw Oo Paya. Stop at Phaung Daw Oo Pagoda, the holiest religious site in southern Shan State.
Accommodation at Golden Island Cottage, Nampan (Deluxe Room) or similar, Inle Lake
From the hotel, drive by boat to Nyaung Shwe Jetty and then continue by car to Lwe Kin (Taung Yoe) Village, where we start hiking about 13:30 hours to Kon Zon passing by the hills with panoramic view over the lake. Along the way you will see corn, rice, sugar cane fields, mango, avogado, cheroot plantations etc. after passing the hills, arrive at Kon Zon village of Taung Yoe tribes. Then continue walk to Loi Hkaw, Pao village for about 1 hour then proceed to Bon Dle another Pao village for 45 minutes walk across the coffee, tea leave, orange, apple, pear plantations. After 2 hours walk, you will arrive at Inn Ni Village for overnight stop.
Arrive Inn Ni, stop for tea time and evening time visit in the village and its surrounding. Dinner and overnight at Inn Ni Village, Local homestay.
This morning start of your day trekking from Inn Ni to Thepyae Khone about (1 hour). Continue walk up to Nan Li about (30 minute) and trekking to Thalee Oo approximately (3:30 hour). Lunch stop in Thalee Oo Village. You will also have opportunities to see many species of birds such as wood packers, Junco, Bul Bul, white head eagle, sparrow, swallow, King Fishers and bee eaters. After lunch at local house, walk up to Thalee Oo Jetty about (30 minute) and transfer to your hotel in Inle Lake.
Accommodation at Golden Island Cottage, Nampan (Deluxe Room) or similar, Inle Lake
Transfer to Heho Airport (25 km - 1 hour). Return domestic flight to Yangon. Arrival Yangon and transfer to hotel. Lunch at Rangoon Tea House Restaurant.
Transfer from your hotel to the jetty and cross the Yangon River by local ferry (10 minutes). Upon arrival on the other side, trishaw drivers will take you on country roads through local villages to a monastic school. Here you can meet the children and talk to the teachers (with help of your guide). The head monk do all they can with very limited funds to create a good life for the children, and if you care to make a donation while you are here it will be welcomed for the purchase of school books, blankets, rice, clothing etc. The children are delighted to meet foreigners, and these encounters can be very rewarding for visitors. Next visit is to Chu Chu Workshop, you will see how the plastic bags from the garbage are turned into useful products. Chu Chu members gather plastic bags from the dumping sites and markets in Yangon and work to develop new designs that meet the local and international market demand. On your way back to the ferry enjoy the views of real local rural life - nothing like the busy streets of Yangon on other side of the river. Cross the river and transfer back to your hotel.
Accommodation at Rose Garden Hotel (Balcony Deluxe Room) or similar, Yangon
Transfer to Yangon International Airport for your departure flight.

includes

Our tour prices are included of:

  • All sightseeing tour and transfer services with private air conditioned car/coach as detailed in our itinerary
  • Meals as specified in the itinerary (B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner)
  • All entrance fees for the places as mentioned in the programme
  • Transfers and tours with English-speaking locally-stationed guides
  • Trishaw tour
  • Horse cart in Bagan
  • Dandaree Show
  • Boat to Mingun and in Inle Lake
  • Service charges, room tax and baggage handling
  • Homestay (1night) in Inn Ni Village during trekking in Inle Lake
  • Accommodation at hotels as above mentioned or similar

excludes

Not included are:

  • Domestic airfare
  • Myanmar visa fee
  • Surcharges for throughout guides (English and other languages)
  • Optional Balloon flight at sunrise in Bagan
  • Personal expenditure, such as drinks, souvenirs, laundry, camera fees, communications, postage, gratuities etc.
  • Meals and services other than mentioned in the programme
  • Drinks with meals
  • Compulsory gala dinners during festive seasons and peak season surcharges which will be advised at the time of booking
  • Peak season in general is between 15 December to 15 January and 13
  • 17 April
  • Early check-in and late check-out at hotels, if not mentioned in the programme
  • Travel insurance (cover against all cancellation costs, medical expenses, including repatriation, in the event of accident or illness)

notes

Notes:

  • Hotel prices for packages are quoted bases on hotels as mentioned below. Higher or lower categories can be requested and the price will be adjusted. The hotels featured in the package tour are subject to availabilities at the time of booking.
  • Meals at respective hotels are also included in the hotel prices if the itineraries mention lunch or dinner at hotel.
  • Additional charges during Christmas, New Year and the Water festival period may apply.
  • Supplements for compulsory Gala Dinners will be advised at the time of booking.
  • All hotels have special booking and deposit conditions and will be indicated at the time of booking. Nonrefundable deposits may be required.
  • Domestic airfares are quoted separately and subject to change in case of increases imposed by the airlines (ie. taxes, fuel costs, etc.).
  • There are 8 different airlines operating on the domestic route in Myanmar. Each company has slight different airfares and this pricelist is based on average airfare. Diethelm Travel will book the most convenient and direct routing. The final price can be confirmed once the tickets are booked and issued depending on available booking class and seat availability.
Tour code: MMR10EMT
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