14 days
Duration
Asia and the Orient
Destination
Level 2 - Moderate
Activity

Small Group Escorted Tours: Discovering Myanmar

Myanmar's culture is as rich as its scenery. Discover the beauty of Myanmar in 14 days as we visit major archaeological, historical and cultural sites. Beginning in Yangon, we travel to Inle Lake, Pindaya, Mandalay, Pyin Oo Lwin and Bagan. Our tour group is escorted by a local guide and an experienced program leader. Our itinerary is ideal for mature couples or single travellers wanting to learn about places of interest in Myanmar and its culture and history. Join us and meet some of the warmest and most welcoming people in the world.

Tour Highlights

The first three days will be spent exploring the old colonial city of Yangon. Highlights include the famous Shwedagon Pagoda, arguably the world's most impressive golden stupa. There will be a walking tour of downtown Yangon hosted by the Heritage Trust. Thereafter, we will head north to Inle Lake where floating gardens and stilt villages await. Following this, we travel to Pindaya for Shwe Oo Taung cave complex, home to over 8,000 images of the Buddha.

A short flight takes us to Mandalay, Myanmar's last royal city. Here, we'll visit Mingun, the famous Shwenandaw Monastery, and the Mahamuni and Kuthodaw Pagodas. We then travel to the old British Hill Station, now known as Pyin Oo Lwin, where we will stay for the night. We return to Mandalay the next morning to visit the former royal city of Amarapura before taking in the sunset from U Bein's Bridge, the longest teak bridge in the world.

There will be a boat trip down Ayeyarwaddy River to Myanmar's ancient capital, Bagan. Till today, the mighty Ayeyarwaddy River remains a key transport and communication highway for the people of Myanmar. En route, if tides permit, we visit the historic village of Yandabo. Finally, we spend two days exploring the best of Bagan's 3,500 ancient Buddhist monuments. Regarded by many as one of Asia's premier archaeological sites, a visit to Bagan will truly be an unforgettable experience.

Our Myanmar Tours Are Offered Regularly

Odyssey offers three small group tours to Myanmar every year, in February, March and November. Each group consists of a maximum of sixteen people and is suitable for both couples and single travellers. For more information, check out the ‘Top 5’ or ‘Itinerary’ pages above. To make a booking, please call, send us an email, or simply fill in the form on the right hand side of this page.

As featured in our brochure: Discover Myanmar (Burma).

Tour Notes
  • Group size is limited to 16.
  • Tour will include walking up to 1 kilometre a day at a leisurely pace with stairs, uneven surfaces, and boarding of long boats from piers.

PDF of Tour PDF of Reading List

1
Discover Bagan, one of the world’s premier archaeological sites with more than 3,500 Buddhist monuments dating from the 11th century onward
2
Join pilgrims at the Shwedagon Pagoda, arguably the world’s most impressive golden stupa, and see it come alive as the sun goes down
3
Explore the city of Mandalay, the cultural and historic heart of the old monarchy
4
Wonder at the leg rowers, floating gardens and ancient Indein pagoda complex on Inle Lake
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Spend sunset at U Bein’s Bridge near the former royal capital of Amarapura

Overview: After arrival at Yangon’s international airport, participants make their own way to the hotel.

Our tour commences with a full tour briefing at 6pm, followed by a welcome dinner at our hotel.

Accommodation: We spend 3 nights at the Park Royal Hotel, Yangon, or a similar accommodation.

Overview: Our sightseeing in Yangon commences today. Highlights include the Chauktatgyi pagoda and its colossal reclining Buddha statue, a stop for a scenic photo opportunity on the shores of Kandawgyi Lake, and a guided walk of historic downtown Yangon hosted by the Yangon Heritage Trust.

In the afternoon, we will visit Myanmar’s National Museum where you can find Burmese artefacts and other cultural exhibits.

Accommodation: 1 night at the Park Royal Hotel, or similar accommodation.

Overview: Our sightseeing in Yangon continues with its waterfront. We will visit the Botataung Pagoda, a famous landmark on Yangon’s waterfront, and home to an unusual stupa that can be explored internally. Before proceeding to Bogyoke market, we visit Nanthida Jetty where people commute from the other side of Yangon River.

We then return to the hotel for some leisure time. In the evening, we will visit the magnificent Shwedagon Pagoda which dates back 2,500 years. The stupa is sheathed in 11 tonnes of pure gold and 4,350 diamonds weighing 1800 carats. It is most spectacular at sunset, offering visitors a breathtaking show of light and shadow.

Accommodation: 1 night at the Park Royal Hotel, or similar accommodation.

Overview: This morning, we will fly north from Yangon to Heho.

On arrival, we will travel by coach to Inle Lake. After checking into our hotel, we will board private longboats to begin our exploration of Inle’s enchanting water world. Highlights include the the unique ‘one-legged’ rowing style that Inle’s boatmen use, the floating gardens, villages built on stilts over the lake itself, and traditional local industries including silversmithing, cheroot making and weaving.

We will also visit the famous Paungdaw Oo Pagoda. It is home to five solid gold images reportedly brought to Inle Lake after the fall of Bagan in the 13th century.

We will also visit the bustling ‘5 day market’ where the local Pa’O and Intha people come to sell their produce.

Accommodation: 1 night at the Pristine Lotus Spa & Resort, or similar accommodation.

Overview: This morning, we re-board our longboats on the main lake for a lovely trip up a side canal to visit Indein village, the hidden treasure of Inle Lake. There will be a walking tour through bamboo groves along streams where children and young monks play, as well as to the Shwe Indein pagoda complex which houses small temples and stupas dating back to the 11th century.

We then return to the main part of Inle Lake for lunch. After checking out from our hotel, we take a scenic drive through the countryside at the northern end of the Lake and visit the Red Mountain winery en route to the small town of Pindaya, where we spend the night.

Accommodation: 1 night at the Pindaya Inle Inn, or similar accommodation.

Overview: This morning, we will visit the small, local market in Pindaya for a taste of village life.

This is followed by a tour through the astonishing Shwe Oo Taung cave complex, formed over 200 million years ago and now home to over 8,000 images of the Buddha.

We return to Heho airport in the afternoon to catch a flight to Mandalay.

Accommodation: 2 nights at the Sedona Hotel, or similar accommodation.

Overview: This morning, we will transfer to the riverbank to board our private chartered boat upriver to Mingun. Here, we will see the mammoth pagoda commonly referred to as ‘the largest pile of bricks in the world’ (widely believed to be abandoned before construction was finished). A lovely stroll along the riverbank takes us to Mingun Bell, the world’s largest ringing bell.

We then proceed to the outstanding Mya Thein Tan Pagoda, also referred to as the Taj Mahal of Myanmar. We will then return by boat to Mandalay for lunch.

There will be a city sightseeing tour in the afternoon which includes the highly-revered Mahamuni Pagoda, a traditional gold leaf making workshop, the Shwenandaw Monastery (noted for its exquisite wood carvings), and the Kuthodaw Pagoda, renowned as the world’s largest book with its 729 stone slabs that contain the entire Buddhist scriptures. If time permits, we will visit Mandalay Hill for a stunning view of the city and Ayeyarwaddy River.

Accommodation: 1 night at the Sedona Hotel, or similar accommodation.

Overview: We continue our journey by coach, driving up to the former British Hill Station, Maymyo, (now known as Pyin Oo Lwin) for cooler temperatures and beautiful scenery. Our sightseeing includes elegant colonial houses, Myanmar’s beautiful 237 acre National Botanical Garden, and the Pwe Kauk waterfall.

Accommodation: 1 night at the Aureum Resort, Governor’s House, or similar accommodation.

Overview: Today’s sightseeing begins with a visit to the busy Pyin Oo Lwin market before we return to Mandalay for lunch.

In the afternoon, we will head to the Bagaya monastery and a silk weaving workshop in the former royal capital, Amarapura, before driving down to Lake Taungthaman to see the sunset at U Bein’s Bridge. This is the longest teak bridge in the world, built in 1782 using huge teak pillars salvaged from the former royal capital.

Accommodation: 1 night at the Sedona Hotel, or similar accommodation.

Overview: Today, we transfer to the banks of the Ayeyarwaddy River to board our vessel for a full day’s cruise to Bagan. If tides permit, we break our journey at Yandabo village. This is the site of the peace treaty that ended the First Anglo-Burmese War between the British and Myanmar in 1826. Locally, it is more famous for its pottery, and we will witness the pottery-making process. We then return to our boat for lunch, and resume our cruise down the Ayeyarwaddy to Bagan.

After disembarking around sunset at Nyaung U, we transfer to our hotel in the historical centre of Old Bagan.

Accommodation: 3 nights at the Bagan Hotel River View, or similar accommodation.

Overview: Today we’ll begin our sightseeing in Bagan, home to the world’s largest and densest concentration of temples, pagodas, stupas, and other Buddhist monuments. Many date back to the 11th century and are still in use today. Bagan is widely regarded as one of the world’s premier archaeological sites and its architecture and accompanying frescoes are one of the main highlights of our small group tour to Myanmar. Our visit will take in a variety of temples, stupas and monasteries, the magnificent Bagan Archaeological Museum, and a climb up to the top of one of the temples for a view of the sun setting over the surrounding plain.

Accommodation: 1 night at the Bagan Hotel River View, or similar accommodation.

Overview: This morning, we travel southeast of Bagan to visit Mt Popa, an extinct volcano now covered in lush forest. After Mt Popa erupted many millennia ago, the volcanic plug that was blown onto the surrounding plain became known as Popa Taung Kalat, a 2,418 foot-high natural feature now home to a plethora of Buddhist and not-so-Buddhist shrines inhabited by pilgrims and monkeys.

On our drive back to Bagan, we stop at a local farm to see the production of jaggery and palm wine liquor.

In the late afternoon, we will take a pony cart drive through the temples nearby our hotel to Taungbi village and its lovely 18th century teak monastery.

Accommodation: 1 night at the Bagan Hotel River View, or similar accommodation.

Overview: Our sightseeing in Bagan concludes with a morning visit to the market at Nyaung U where you can pick up some souvenirs. This is followed by a tour of one of Bagan’s famous lacquer-ware workshops, where we will learn how Myanmar’s famous lacquer-ware is produced, and see highly skilled artisans creating a wide variety of products.

Following lunch, we head to the airport for our flight back to Yangon and a farewell dinner at our hotel.

Accommodation: 1 night at the Park Royal Hotel, or similar accommodation.

Overview: Our tour concludes today after breakfast at our Yangon hotel.

Tour Inclusions

  • 13 nights of twin share hotel accommodation
  • 13 breakfasts, 3 lunches, and 12 dinners
  • 3 internal flights as detailed in the itinerary
  • All sightseeing including entrance fees and 1 day of cruising
  • All transportation as per itinerary by private vehicle and driver
  • Services of an English speaking local guide
  • Odyssey program leader for the duration of the tour
  • Detailed tour information booklet

What’s not included in our Tour

  • International airfares and taxes
  • Comprehensive travel insurance
  • Items of a personal nature, such as telephone calls and laundry
Map of Myanmar
Myanmar places of interest
Small Group Discovering Myanmar
Young Boy Myanmar
Morning ballon ride over the Pagodas, Myanmar
Reclining Buddha, Myanmar
Myanmar
xplore Bagan, a cultural and artistic wonderland
Bagan, Myanmar
Bagan Pagadas, Myanmar

Tour Reviews

June 20, 2016

The tour was fantastic and well organised and well managed.
· I have travelled expensively but have not with a travel organisation that comes anywhere near Odyssey’s attention to detail and the comfort of its travellers.
· The tour was fantastic and well organised and well managed. The transport provided was always very good and where the seats were a little narrow, the bus was big enough for us to ‘spread out’ for more comfort.
· Our accommodation was excellent as was our local guide.I would highly recommend a trip to this beautiful country with many treasures to explore and learn about.
Discover Myanmar Nov ‘15

November 13, 2017

Your chat-operator was informative and helpful. We have covered quite a few countries and seasons to travel. Full marks for that!

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