14 days
Asia and the Orient
Level 2 - Moderate

Small group escorted tours discovering Myanmar places of interest

Visitors on our small group escorted tours find a fascinating and beautiful country, rich in culture and scenery. Myanmar places of interest and curiosity are many to be seen for the traveller. Our 14 day escorted small group escorted tour visits the main archaeological, historical and cultural sites. Beginning in Yangon, we travel to Inle Lake, Pindaya, Mandalay, Pyin Oo Lwin and Bagan. This is the perfect vacation for the mature couple or single traveller wanting to learn about Myanmar's places of interest its culture and history. Our tour is escorted by a local guide and experienced program leader. Join us and meet some of the warmest and most welcoming people anywhere in the world.

Myanmar small group tour highlights

Our small group tour begins with three days exploring the old colonial city of Yangon.  Highlights include the famous Shwedagon Pagoda, arguably the world's most impressive golden stupa.  As part of our time here we also enjoy a walking tour of downtown Yangon hosted by the Heritage Trust. After Yangon the tour  then heads north to Inle Lake to see its floating gardens and stilt villages. Then we travel to Pindaya to visit the 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 on to the old British hill station, now known as Pyin Oo Lwin, for one night. We return to Mandalay the next morning to visit the former royal city of Amarapura before taking in sunset from U Bein's Bridge, the longest teak bridge in the world.

Then the following day we spend on our boat travelling slowly down the Ayeyarwaddy River to Myanmar's ancient capital, Bagan. The mighty Ayeyarwaddy River remains a key transport and communication highway for the people of Myanmar, as it has for centuries. En route, if tides permit, we visit the historic village of Yandabo. Finally we spend the next two days exploring the best of Bagan's 3,500 ancient Buddhist monuments. Bagan is regarded by many as one of Asia's premier archaeological sites and a visit here is a truly unforgettable experience.

Odyssey's small group tour discovering Myanmar is escorted by an Odyssey program leader and a national guide who readily share their knowledge of the history and culture of each location visited.

Tours discovering Myanmar are offered several times a year.

Odyssey offers three small group tour departures to Myanmar every year, in February, March and November. Each small group tour takes a maximum of sixteen people and is suitable for either a couple or a single traveller.

This tour is one of some 140 group tours offered each year by Odyssey Traveller. Odyssey has been a leading affordable tour operator since 1983. For more details, click the ‘Top 5’ or ‘Itinerary’ buttons above! If you’re keen to experience this tour, please call or send an email. Or, to book, simply fill in the form on the right hand side of this page.

This tour is featured in our brochure as "Discover Myanmar (Burma)"

This link to an Odyssey  article on Bagan may also help you with your planning to Myanmar.

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

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

Overview: After arrival at Yangon’s international airport each participant will 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 similar accommodation.

Overview: Today we begin our sightseeing in Yangon.  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, filled with artefacts and cultural exhibits.

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

Overview: Today we continue our sightseeing in Yangon, beginning at Yangon’s waterfront. We will visit the Botataung Pagoda, which is a famous landmark on Yangon’s waterfront, and home to an unusual stupa that can be explored internally. We also visit Nanthida Jetty to see people coming and going to work from the other side of the Yangon River, and then proceed to Bogyoke market. We will return to the hotel for leisure time, then 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 at its most spectacular at sunset, offering visitors a spectacular show of light and shadow.

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

Overview: This morning we’ll fly north from Yangon to Heho. On arrival, we’ll travel by coach to Inle Lake, and after checking into our hotel we’ll 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’ll also visit the famous Paungdaw Oo Pagoda, home to five solid gold images reported to have been brought to Inle Lake after the fall of Bagan in the 13th century.  We’ll 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 reboard our longboats for a lovely trip up a side canal from the main lake to visit Indein village, the hidden treasure of Inle Lake.  We’ll walk through bamboo groves along streams where children and young monks play, then a stroll uphill brings us to the Shwe Indein pagoda complex, full of small temples and stupas dating back to the 11th century. Many are slowly crumbling away, while others have been restored by devout Buddhist donors. After a stroll through the pagoda complex, we’ll 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’ll visit the small, local market in Pindaya for a taste of village life, 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.  In the early afternoon we’ll return to Heho airport and take a late afternoon flight to Mandalay.

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

Overview: This morning we’ll transfer to the riverbank to board our private chartered boat upriver to Mingun. Here we’ll see the mammoth pagoda commonly referred to as ‘the largest pile of bricks in the world’, as it is widely believed to be abandoned before construction was finished.  A lovely stroll along the riverbank takes us to the Mingun Bell, the world’s largest ringing bell, then on to visit the outstanding Mya Thein Tan Pagoda, sometimes referred to as the Taj Mahal of Myanmar. We’ll then return by boat to Mandalay for lunch.  In the afternoon we’ll enjoy a city sightseeing tour, including 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 as its 729 stone slabs contain the entire Buddhist scriptures. If time permits, we’ll visit Mandalay Hill to enjoy a stunning view of the city and Ayeyarwaddy River.

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

Overview: Today we continue our journey by coach, driving up to the former British Hill Station, Maymyo, which is now known as Pyin Oo Lwin.  Here we’ll enjoy 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’ll visit the Bagaya monastery and a silk weaving workshop in the former royal capital, Amarapura, before driving down to Lake Taungthaman to see sunset at U Bein’s Bridge. This bridge, the longest teak bridge in the world, was 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’ll transfer to the banks of the Ayeyarwaddy River to board our vessel for a full day’s cruise to Bagan. If tides permit, we’ll break our journey at Yandabo village, site of the peace treaty that ended the First Anglo-Burmese War between the British and Myanmar in 1826, but more locally famous for its pottery.  After a stroll around the village to see the various stages in the pottery making process we’ll 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’ll 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’ll stop at a local farm to see the production of jaggery and palm wine liquor. In the late afternoon we’ll 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: We’ll finish our sightseeing in Bagan with a morning visit to the market at Nyaung U for last minute souvenir shopping, followed by a tour of one of Bagan’s famous lacquerware workshops. Here we’ll learn out Myanmar’s famous lacquerware is produced, and see highly skilled artisans creating a wide variety of products. Following lunch we’ll transfer 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.

What’s included in our Tour

  • 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
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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