5-Day Sanctuary Ananda Cruise (Mandalay to Bagan) – Group Journey

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Tour type

Tour Level: Relaxed / Easy

Tour Comfort: Luxury

Tour Period: 5 Days

tour highlights

  • 4 Nights river cruise along the Ayeyarwaddy River from Mandalay
  • Bagan
  • Exploring the countryside of Mandalay; Sagaing and Amarapura
  • Visit to a rarely-explored riverside village, Sin Kyun
  • Get on the top of Tan Kyi Taung mountain to get a glimpse of magnificent Bagan
  • Discover the beauty of the untouched Myanmar scenery
  • Variety of on board activities including cooking class by the cruise chef

tour details

This 4-night cruise will offer you an opportunity to discover the main highlights and the hidden gems in the central Myanmar; Mandalay and Bagan. Enjoy your downstream river journey along the Ayeyarwaddy and explore the countryside areas of royal Mandalay. Walk along the world’s longest teak bridge, U Bein and witness the fascinating scenery of the sunset. During your journey, explore the Sin Kyun village on the bank of Mu river. Visiting to the top of Tan Kyi Taung and sightseeing in the former capital of Bagan are truly magical.

Join In tour with departure on Wednesday.

Embarkation time is at 12:30 hours at Gawein jetty. Enjoy your lunch on board as cruising towards the pagoda sprinkled Sagaing Hill. Here visit a Monastic school and orphanage where you will have the opportunity to meet some of the residents and understand the teachings of Buddhism before taking in the views from the top of the hill on the terrace of the Soon U Ponya Shin Pagoda. After that, visit Amarapura, known as 'The City of Immortals' which in its heyday, held some 200,000 inhabitants. You will visit one of the textile workshops, followed by the U Bein Bridge, a spectacular place to enjoy the sunset. Back on board Sanctuary Ananda, enjoy a local performance followed by dinner.
Overnight on board
Early this morning Sanctuary Ananda will sail to the quaint village of Sin Kyun, a village just north of Mandalay sponsored by Sanctuary Retreats Philanthropy. Take an optional tour to witness firsthand the way of life in this unspoiled location seldom viewed by outsiders. After the village tour, set sail towards Tan Kyi Taung Mountain. Next passing the sleepy village of Mingun, home to the unfinished pagoda which can be seen from the ship. Continue to sail south, relax as you sail past villages, set against a backdrop of soft browns, rich tamarind trees with white and golden pagodas gracing the distant hills. After lunch, a variety of on board activities will be offered including a longyi (sarong) and thanaka (cosmetic) demonstration and mixology. A delicious dinner will then follow.
Overnight on board
After breakfast, join the back of house tour and take a cooking demonstration with the Executive Chef. Test your knowledge of local delicacies and learn how to create delicious Asian dishes. Enjoy lunch on board as you enter Bagan, with full of sprinkled pagodas and temples. After lunch, head to the top of Tan Kyi Taung to enjoy your first glimpse of the Bagan plain, containing more than 2,000 pagodas and stupas. Before embarking the Sanctuary Ananda, enjoy the Elephant dance show on the shore, an age old acrobatic dance used to entertain the Bagan people. Witness the breathtaking and beautiful sunset from the Kansi Panorama Lounge with one of our signature cocktails. A candlelit dinner will be served on the banks of the Ayeyarwaddy river.
Early in the morning, take an optional balloon tour to capture a birds-eye view of the Bagan plain (an additional charge applies, please book in advance), followed by breakfast back on board. Visit the bustling local market of Nyaung U where the farmers meet to buy and sell a variety of goods, ranging from fruit and vegetables to china and lacquerware. Next, visit the famous Shwezigon Pagoda which is said to contain important relics of the Gautama Buddha, two bones and a replica of a tooth. Take a horse cart ride to transport through the Bagan plains, with several photo stops and a visit to Sulamani pagoda. After lunch on board, visit the Ananda Temple, regarded by folklore as the most beautiful temple in Myanmar. Enjoy the sunset over the Bagan plains. Admire the light change on the pagodas as they exude antiquity and mystery. Finally, the sun sets behind the hills on the far side of the Ayeyarwaddy River, filling the sky with a reddish glow, a truly magic moment. A local performance will be followed by a farewell dinner on board.
Overnight on board
Enjoy an early breakfast on your final morning before disembarkation at 09:00 hours at Taung Phi jetty in Bagan.


Our tour prices are included of:

  • Accommodation in twin/sharing cabin (or single cabin)
  • Meals as specified in the itinerary (B=Breakfast, L=Lunch and D=Dinner)
  • All entrance fees for the places as mentioned in the program
  • Tours with English-speaking on board guide (all tours are join-in)
  • Service charges, room tax and baggage handling


Not included are:

  • Domestic airfare
  • Myanmar visa fee
  • Transfer to and ex boat
  • Optional Balloon flight in Bagan
  • Surcharges for throughout guides (English and other languages)
  • 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
  • Laundry Service
  • Telephone calls and Fax charges
  • Travel insurance (cover against all cancellation costs, medical expenses, including repatriation, in the event of accident or illness)


Important Notes:

  • Myanmar's rivers are subject to seasonal variations in the water level
  • sometimes by as much as 28 metres. Such changes can occur without prior warning
  • even overnight. This may well result in the ship not being able to sail at the expected speed and/or be unable to pass under bridges or indeed the water level being too low to safely progress.

  • A beautiful feature of the river is its sandbanks, but navigationally these can also pose problems
  • not least of which is the potential to run aground. Additionally, from time to time the river authorities may also close sections of the river, although we normally receive advance notice. Such experiences are part of the excitement of any river expedition and are to be expected. Our published itineraries are an indication only and subject to change due to all the above.

  • We will always replace the itinerary based on our 'safety first' philosophy, whilst doing all we can to respect the published itinerary or substituting alternatives. It simply may not always be possible to maintain every feature. This is all part of the rich experience of travelling on Myanmar's beautiful and fascinating rivers.
Tour code: SAN4MBDW

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