15-Day Golden Land Exploration

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Tour type

Tour Level: Relaxed / Easy

Tour Comfort: Standard

Tour Period: 15 Days

tour highlights

  • Yangon sightseeing and visit the world's wonder Shwedagon Pagoda
  • Ancient Bagan temples and pagodas sightseeing
  • Explore Minnanthu village to learn the local lifestyle
  • Visit the small town of Pakkoku and discover the local workshops
  • Overland drive to Monywa and explore the religious sites
  • Discover the ancient cities of Mingun, Ava and take a stroll on U Bein Bridge for a magnificent sunset view
  • Inle Lake and Indaing sightseeing by a long tailed boat
  • Relaxing 4 nights stay in an unspoilt beach
  • Yangon sightseeing and sunset cruise in the Yangon River

tour details

Beginning in Yangon, your tour commences with visits to the Bogyoke Market, Sule Pagoda and the Shwedagon Pagoda before you make your way to Bagan. Here you’ll wander through local markets, see the Shwezigon Pagoda and explore Gubyaukgyi. Next you’ll make your way to the Ananda Temple, a lacquer ware workshop and the Kyat Kan Cave Monastery. From here you’ll proceed to the small town of Pakkoku, known for its quaint markets and the huge reclining Buddha. You’ll then make your way to Heho, situated close to Inle Lake. Mingle with the locals as you explore Ywama village and the nearby Indaing village. You’ll conclude your tour with visits to the 5-day rotating market, Nga Phe Kyaung Monastery and a blacksmith’s forge before making your way back to the ever-evolving capital city of Yangon.

Arrival Yangon International Airport, you will meet your tour guide after clearing immigration and customs control and transfer to hotel (check in time is 14:00 hours). Lunch at Shan Yoe Yar Restaurant.
In the afternoon, start an introductory half-day tour 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. Lunch at Shan Yoe Yar Restaurant .Proceed to Bogyoke (Scott) Market (closed on Mondays and Public Holidays) followed by an extended visit to Shwedagon Pagoda, one of the world's most spectacular religious monuments. The golden dome of the Shwedagon Pagoda rises 98 metres above its base and is covered with 60 tons of pure gold. Return to hotel.
Accommodation at Ibis Style Yangon Stadium Hotel (Superior Room) or similar, Yangon.
Transfer to Yangon Airport for domestic flight to Bagan.
Pick up from the airport from where you start your tour to the busy local market, continuing with visits to a diverse selection of the most important pagodas and temples in Bagan. These include the Shwezigon Pagoda, a huge gilded temple built by King Anawrahta in the early 11th century and Gubyaukgyi (Wetkyi-Inn), a 13th century temple with exquisite murals of the 'Jataka Tales' (scenes from the life of the Buddha). Continue to the eminent Ananda Temple; one of the finest and largest pagodas, with a 51-metre (170-foot) shimmering gold tip plus four huge standing-Buddha images and numerous seated figures arranged around the interior gallery.
Lunch at Sunset Garden Restaurant.
Later, visit a lacquer craftsman's workshop in nearby Myingaba village. Sightseeing continues with visits to Manuha Temple, built in Mon style in 1059; Nanpaya Temple, a unique sandstone monument that is said to have been the palace of King Manuha; and Gubyaukgyi (Myingaba) under the protection of UNESCO because of its ancient mural paintings. Observe a sunset in the vicinity of Bagan's ancient monuments.
Accommodation at Shwe Yee Pwint Hotel (Bagan 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 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 visit Minnanthu village by horse cart. Visit Tayoke Pyay, Payathonzu and Nandamanya Temples (noted for exquisite 13th century murals) and Kyat Kan Cave Monastery, a famous meditation centre in Bagan. Visit farming houses around Bagan. Lunch at Ayeyarwaddy River Terrace Restaurant.
In the afternoon, enjoy an excursion to the beautiful Nat Htaung Kyaung, a monastery famous for wood carvings, built in 1781 by a group of monks. Admire the monastery's collection of ancient Buddha statues and lacquer boxes.
Accommodation at Shwe Yee Pwint Hotel (Bagan Room) or similar, Bagan.
Pick up from your hotel and drive to Pakkoku, an unspoilt small town famous for its tobacco trade and weaving workshops to see how characteristic Myanmar checked cotton blankets are made. Visit a local market and a cheroot maker's where skilled young women can make hundreds of cheroots in a day. Stop at a small Thanaka market (traditional makeup and sunscreen for Myanmar people) and a workshop where traditional slippers and incredible wood carvings are made. Lunch at local restaurant. Drive to Monywa (approximately 4 hours). On the way visit Thanboddhay Pagoda, about 20 Km from Monywa. The richly decorated central stupa has no less than 845 smaller stupas around it. Inside the pagoda compound are thousands of Buddha images (reportedly over 500,000) decorating every wall, archway and niche. Also see beautiful wooden carvings of the 'Jataka Tales' (stories from the Buddha's life) and a huge Reclining Buddha nearby. Arrive Monywa and transfer to your hotel.
Accommodation at Win Unity Hotel (Deluxe-Garden View) or similar, Monywa.
Drive across the bridge over Chindwin River to visit a sandstone cave system in the Po Win Hills, named after a famous 'zawgyi' (alchemist) who once lived here. The Caves of Po Win Daung, numbering more than one hundred, are full of Buddhist statues and murals. Most of the images are in the 14th - 16th century Ava (Innwa) style, but some may be earlier. Nearby, visit Shwe Ba Daung which features unique pavilions cut from the surrounding sandstone and filled with Buddha images. Also visit a village whose main business is the extraction of copper. Lunch at local restaurant. Afternoon drive to Mandalay (150 Km, about 4hours). Arrive Mandalay in the late afternoon and transfer to your hotel or to Mandalay airport for the late afternoon departure.
Accommodation at Shwe Ingyinn Hotel (Superior Room) or similar, Mandalay.
You are picked up from your hotel and transferred to the jetty. En route, stop at the Zeycho vegetable market. 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 world's biggest) before returning downriver to Mandalay. Drive towards the former royal capital of Innwa (Ava) located on an island between the Ayeyarwady and the Myitnge Rivers. A local ferry carries you to the island where your horse cart and driver await you - no cars are allowed here. Lunch at Small River Restaurant AVA.
Pass through the ancient city walls to visit the brick and stucco monastery of Maha Aungmye Bonzan (also known as Ok Kyaung) before continuing to the impressive wooden monastery of Bagaya Kyaung. If time permits, visit some village homes to see local handicrafts such as silk weaving, cane mats and alms bowls.
Take a sunset stroll on U Bein Bridge, which at over a kilometre is believed to be the longest teak bridge in the world. It was reportedly built by local headman U Bein of teak salvaged from the former royal palace after the capital moved to Mandalay in 1859. Whilst the bridge has been repaired from time to time, the pillars are still original.
Accommodation at Shwe Ingyinn Hotel (Superior Room) or similar, Mandalay.
Optional: Oriental Ballooning's flights offer stunning bird's eye views of the world-famous archaeological site of Bagan and the mystical landscape of Mandalay. There is no better way to enjoy a breathtaking view of the entire region, with the mighty Ayeyarwady River or the former royal capital at your feet and mysterious mountains on the horizon.
You will be collected from your hotel and provided with a light breakfast and safety briefing while the balloons inflate, before enjoying a sunrise flight lasting just under one hour.
Oriental Ballooning is operated by qualified European or UK pilots and technicians who are all registered in the United Kingdom. Cameron Balloons Ltd., the world's largest manufacturer of high quality balloons, manufactures the equipment.

Enjoy a comprehensive tour of Mandalay, a highlight of which is the 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, marble being carved into Buddha images, and gold leaf being beaten into paper-thin pieces, stone carving and bronze casting.
Next visit beautiful teak-carved Shwenandaw Monastery, the only Royal Palace building to survive World War II bombing, and Kuthodaw Pagoda, where the Theravada Buddhist scriptures are inscribed on 729 marble slabs, giving rise to its nickname 'the world's largest book'. Lunch at Mingalarbar Restaurant.
Atop Mandalay Hill lie glittering glass-studded temple walls which reflect the evening glow as you watch the sunset. Afterwards, visit Shwe Kyin Monastery to observe student monks at their evening prayers.
Accommodation at Shwe Ingyinn Hotel (Superior Room) or similar, Mandalay.
Transfer to Mandalay Airport for domestic flight to Heho. Transfer from Heho airport down into the valley to Nyaungshwe (approx. 1 hour drive) on the edge of Inle Lake. En route, stop at Shweyanpyay wooden monastery. Transfer by own your local boat to hotel on the lake. Lunch at Golden Kite Indaing Restaurant.
Pick-up 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; 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. Afterwards, continue by boat downstream past Yethar village, watching local life on the banks and birds in the trees until rejoining the Lake near Phaung Daw Oo Paya.
Accommodation at Golden Island Cottage - Nampan (Superior Room) or similar, Inle Lake.
Explore a 5-day rotating market (if your visit coincides with the schedule) which offers an insight into the life of the ethnic Pa-O, Danu and Intha people who come to these markets to sell and buy goods. Enjoy a full day boat trip on Inle Lake - a photographer's dream. Its calm waters are dotted with floating vegetation and fishing canoes, to which scenic hills provide the perfect backdrop. See the lake's unique 'leg rowers' - Intha fishermen who row standing up with one leg wrapped around a single oar, leaving their hands free to manipulate the conical fishing net. Stop at Phaung Daw Oo Pagoda, the holiest religious site in southern Shan State. Lunch at Green Chilli Restaurant.
Visit a traditional silk-weaving workshop which uses wooden handlooms, and a blacksmith's forge. Pass endless floating gardens, where Intha lake dwellers grow fruit and vegetables. Continue by boat to visit Nga Phe Kyaung Monastery, one of the oldest on the lake, where you can see exquisite Buddha statues which are more than 200 years old. Return to your hotel by boat as the sun lowers and the light softens over the lake.
Accommodation at Golden Island Cottage - Nampan (Superior Room) or similar, Inle Lake.
Transfer by local boat back to Nyaung Shwe and then proceed to Heho Airport (25 km - 1 hour) for domestic flight to Thandwe (Ngapali). Arrival Thandwe airport and transfer to hotel.
Accommodation at Thande Beach (Thande Partial Sea View - Deluxe Bungalow) or similar, Ngapali Beach.
Days at leisure.
Accommodation at Thande Beach (Thande Partial Sea View - Deluxe Bungalow) or similar, Ngapali Beach.
Days at leisure.
Accommodation at Thande Beach (Thande Partial Sea View - Deluxe Bungalow) or similar, Ngapali Beach.
Days at leisure
Accommodation at Thande Beach (Thande Partial Sea View - Deluxe Bungalow) or similar, Ngapali Beach.
Transfer Airport for domestic flight to Yangon. Arrival Yangon and transfer to hotel.
In the afternoon, visit to the Bogyoke (Scott) Market (closed on Mondays & Public Holidays) gives you the opportunity to see Myanmar's wide range of handicrafts. Drive to the jetty along Strand Road and walk along Yangon River to see the busy harbour area, from where ferries leave for Pathein in the Delta and for upcountry towns along the Ayeyarwady River. Lunch at Union Bar Restaurant.
At 15:30 hour drive to the Botathaung Jetty Number 4, where you board the one of the Cruise boats for a leisurely Sunset Cruise on the Yangon River. The river is always busy with cargo ships sailing up and down while small sampans cross the river to bring people from one side to the other. You'll also see the lighthouse which guided ships to the entrance to the Twante Canal, the narrow waterway constructed in 1883 to connect the Yangon and Ayeyarwady Rivers, still in use today. Enjoy the lovely glow of lights along the riverbank as the sun gently sinks below the horizon, and you sip a cocktail and savour some delicious snacks. Return to the jetty around 18:30 hours, and transfer back to your hotel.
Accommodation at Ibis Style Yangon Stadium Hotel (Superior Room) or similar, Yangon.
Transfer to the International airport.


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)
  • All entrance fees for the places as mentioned in the programme
  • Horse carts
  • Transfers and tours with English-speaking locally-stationed guides
  • Boat service as per itinerary
  • Service charges, room tax and baggage handling
  • Accommodation at hotels as above mentioned or similar
  • Filtered drinking water and wet towels during the tour


Not included are:

  • Domestic airfare (Yangon-Bagan, Mandalay-Heho-Thandwe-Yangon)
  • Myanmar visa fee
  • Surcharges for throughout guides (English and other languages)
  • Optional Balloon flights
  • 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)



  • Hotel prices for packages are quoted bases on hotels as mentioned or similar. 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 Festive Season: 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: MMR15EXM

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