YANGON / BAGAN / SAGAING & INWA / INLE / LOIKAW
A land of dazzling pagodas, crumbling temples and age-old customs, this immersive tour delves deep into the magic and mystery of Burma. You’ll explore culture treasures, try your hand at traditional crafts and meet some of the country’s diverse local people. Have you ever heard of the sacred Shwedagon Pagoda with Scott market with all its diverse products or the Chaukhtatgyi reclining Buddha image in Yangon? Following is a 12 day Myanmar heritage tour with Ngapali beach stay which takes you to the heart of the Golden pagodas visiting country’s tourist attractions and heritage sites on a deep exploration.
Fly overnight to the vibrant city of Yangon. Depending on your time of arrival the rest of the day is yours to start soaking up the local culture.
Start the day exploring the atmospheric Shwedagon Pagoda. Burma’s most scared Buddhist site, it is said to have four relics of Buddha enshrined within. Continue to browse the exhibits of the National Museum before taking a ride on the Yangon Circle Train, the authentic, local way to see the city. Learn about national hero, Aung San, at a museum housed in his former home before heading into downtown Rangoon to stroll through the street markets and crumbling colonial architecture. End the day with a cocktail at the Strand Hotel – built in 1901 it is still one of the city’s grandest hotels.
This morning, board a plane for the short hop to Bagan. Your rst experience of the area’s glorious temples will be Ananda. Built in 1091, this temple has been in constant use ever since and exudes a wonderful atmosphere. Take to the waters of the Irrawaddy and cruise to Kyun Thiri village, where you’ll visit the monastery for tea and snacks. Returning to Bagan, visit a lacquer ware shop before taking a horse and cart ride among the temples.
Travel to Mt Popa, an extinct volcano rising out of the Myingyan Plain, where you’ll ascend a volcanic plug to visit the temple on its summit. The views from the top are incredible! Returning to Bagan, stop at a toddy palm plantation to learn about this family enterprise. Later, cycle to the secluded Kauk Gyu cave temple to examine the exquisite stone carvings.
Fly to Mandalay. Get to grips with the traditional industry of goldbeating on a visit to a gold- leaf hammering shop, before visiting the Mahamuni Buddha, one of the most revered Buddha images in the country. It’s also the perfect place to see where what happens to all that hammered gold! Continue to magni cent teakwood Shwenandaw monastery and Kuthodaw pagoda, home to the world’s largest book. Take a relaxed cruise down the Irrawaddy to the monumental Mingun Pagoda, which dominates the river bank.
Today begins at a nunnery nestled in the Sagaing Hills, before a short boat trip over to Inwa, the ancient imperial capital set on an island. A horse and cart will take you around the sights. Next, walk with the locals over U Bein Bridge, the world’s longest teak bridge – the setting is beautiful. Finally, sit
back and enjoy a sunset cruise VIEToNAnM Lake Tautaman, with cocktails on hand.
Fly to Heho, in the Shan highlands, and transfer to Pindaya to discover the Shwe U Min limestone caves,
a famous Buddhist pilgrimage site. Later, visit the skilled artisans who make Burma’s iconic paper umbrellas in their workshop. The umbrellas are made solely by hand in many beautiful shades.
Set out on foot to explore the landscapes of the Shan Highlands. Wander through a tea plantation and pass through villages where you’ll be able to see local communities going about their daily lives. This afternoon, transfer to Inle Lake. The lake is best known for the extraordinary Intha people, who live on and around the water, and are renowned for their unique rowing technique.
Discover the overgrown forest of stupas and pagodas at Indein, before taking to the waters of Inle Lake
to explore. You’ll oat through stilt villages, stopping at the workshops of local industry – silk weaving, silver smithing and cheroot making. Stop to look at the resourceful oating gardens and keep an eye out for shermen going about their business in Inle’s unique style.
Enjoy a morning walk through a local market before visiting an Intha house for a cooking class with a local chef. You’ll get to enjoy the dishes you create for lunch. This afternoon see Phaung Daw Oo Pagoda, the temple at the heart of the lake community, then head onto dry land to take a tuk tuk to the Red Mountain winery. Here, you’ll have a tour of this wine making facility including a tasting.
Take a boat to reach the city of Loikaw, a place that offers a glimpse of wonderfully authentic Burma, due to the fact it was off- limits to travellers for many years. Make stops en route at local villages to see pottery makers and rice wine producers as well as the picturesque partially submerged pagodas at Sagar. Leave the boat at Pe Khone, in an area where Shan, Pa O and Intha ethnic groups make their homes, and transfer to Loikaw by road.
Visit more of Burma’s ethnic minority groups in Pan Pat village, home to the Kayah Padaung people. The women of this group are famous for elongating their necks by wearing bronze rings – they are one of Burma’s most iconic images. Back in Loikaw, visit the Kayah State Cultural Museum and a colonial house from 1912 which was used by the Shan royal family, and Taung Kwe pagoda.
Transfer to the airport and y back to Rangoon. There will be time to visit Bogyoke market to pick up a few more souvenirs and, time permitting, Botataung pagoda and Nanthida jetty. A farewell meal this evening will be at The House of Memories. In the building where General Aung San once had his of ce, the restaurant is lled with fascinating old mementoes.
End of the trip, transfer to the airport for departure flight.