Build Your Own Trip

Overview

  • Day 1: Arrival Mandalay
  • Day 2: Mandalay – Mingun – Sagaing at Sunset
  • Day 3: Mandalay – Monywa – Boditahaung, hanboddhay & Shweguni Pagoda
  • Day 4: Monywa – Po Win Taung – Shwe Ba Hill
  • Day 5: Monywa – Pakokku – Ayeyarwady River Cruise – Bagan
  • Day 6: Bagan Temple Tour
  • Day 7: Bagan – Discovery local Villages
  • Day 8: Bagan – Flight to Heho – Train to Kalaw
  • Day 9: Kalaw – Htee Tein Trek – Overnight in monastery
  • Day 10: Htee Tein – Trek to Than Daung – Inle Lake
  • Day 11: Inle Lake – In Dein & Ywama
  • Day 12: Inle Lake – Flight to Yangon – Kyaikhtiyo (Golden Rock)
  • Day 13: Kyaikhtiyo (Golden Rock) – Kinpun – Hpa An – Kyauk Kalap Pagoda
  • Day 14: Hpa An – Mount Zwekabin Trek – Saddan Cave
  • Day 15: Hpa An – Kawgun Cave – Yangon
  • Day 16: Train Ride – Sule Pagoda – Colonial Walking Tour – Shwedagon Pagoda
  • Day 17: Departure Yangon

Full Itinerary

[*Notes]

- This itinerary is a privately guided tour, designed just to show you what is possible.
- We can tailor this trip, it's inclusions and the accommodations, to meet your requirements, budget, and interests.

Arrival Mandalay

Upon your arrival in Mandalay, get welcomed by your tour guide and driver, and transferred in a private vehicle to your hotel for check-in.

Overnight in Mandalay



Mandalay – Mingun – Sagaing at Sunset

Morning
Visit Mahamuni Pagoda, the second most sacred image in Myanmar next to the Shwedagon Pagoda. Contine to visit local artisan’s workshops of gold leaf making, woodcarving and marble carving. Next, visit Golden Palace Monastery famous for its intricate woodcarvings.

Afternoon
After lunch continue to the Kuthodaw Pagoda, which is known as the world largest book due to the Buddhist scripture carved on 729 marble slabs. Before sunset visit a 200-year-old teak bridge, the most photographic site in Myanmar.

Overnight in Mandalay
Meals: (Breakfast/_/_)


Mandalay – Monywa – Boditahaung, hanboddhay & Shweguni Pagoda

Depart Mandalay you drive to Monywa (140 km – 4 hours). Yon arrival you will visit Thanboddhay Pagoda. Inside you will see thousands of Buddha images (reportedly over 500,000) decorating every wall, archway and niche. The buildings in the compound have interesting jataka reliefs.

Continue to visit the Bodhi Tataung Laykyun Sekkya standing Buddha statue. At 116 metres, it is the second tallest statue in the world (and second tallest Buddha). It is located at the back of a large religious site with Bodhi trees, gardens containing hundreds of sitting Buddhas, and a huge reclining Buddha lying in front of the Laykyun Sekkya.

Overnight in Monywa
Meals: (Breakfast/_/_)

Monywa – Po Win Taung – Shwe Ba Hill

Rise early to take the ferry to the other side of the Chindwin River where you board a pick-up to see the seldom visited 15th Pho Win Daung temple complex where more than 450,000 sandstone Buddhas were carved in the hillsides in caves, alcoves, or tiny niches. The cave murals are still intact with indigo blues and soft pastels. Then, visit Shwe Ba Daung, which features unique pavilions cut from the surrounding sandstone and filled with Buddha’s images.

Overnight in Monywa
Meals: (Breakfast/_/_)

Monywa – Pakokku – Ayeyarwady River Cruise – Bagan

After breakfast, drive (approx. 4 hrs) to Pakokku to experience a genuine indigenous regional open-air market. Then take a private local boat across the Ayeyarwaddy River to Bagan (approx. 3 hrs by boat). Arrival Bagan and transfer to hotel. The rest of the day is at your leisure.

Overnight in Bagan
Meals: (Breakfast/_/_)



Bagan Temple Tour

Morning
Begin your exploration by visiting a busy local market and gaining an insight into Bagan’s bustling market atmosphere. You will spend the day exploring the architectural masterpieces of this amazing town by visiting a diverse selection of the most important pagodas and temples.

Late afternoon
Climb to the top of the Temple for sunset views. Sit back relax and be amazed by the beauty of Bagan as you watch the sun slowly set behind the ancient pagodas.

Overnight in Bagan
Meals: (Breakfast/_/_)



Bagan – Discovery local Villages

Morning
More than just temples, our tour introduces you to Bagan’s history, culture and local lifestyles. Today, observe the authentic village lifestyle lived by most people in Myanmar by visiting villages near Bagan. Then, get to know Bagan from a different perspective as you explore the area by pony cart. The cart can explore areas that cars are unable to enter giving a unique perspective of Bagan.

Late afternoon
Transfer to the jetty where a private wooden river boat is waiting. Sitting under the shade or on the open-deck you’ll be treated to fabulous views as you cruise down the Irrawaddy River to Shwezigon Pagoda. Enjoy a spectacular sunset on a private boat tour on the river during sunset time will hopefully show you a spectacular sunset. Relax and enjoy the scenery.

Overnight in Bagan
Meals: (Breakfast/_/_)



Bagan – Flight to Heho – Train to Kalaw

Morning flight to Heho. Then, drive to Kalaw or take a train to Kalaw (train departs at 9:20 am). Arrive in Kalaw and transfer to your hotel for check-in. Enjoy your free day at leisure.

Overnight in Kalaw
Meals: (Breakfast/_/_)



Kalaw – Htee Tein Trek – Overnight in monastery

Morning
Get an early start on your two day trekking trip. The road and trail go through beautiful scenery. On the way, visit the villages of Palaung, Danu, Pao and Taung Yoe. Your local station tour guide will introduce you to the villagers and will show you the traditional ways of life.

Afternoon
After lunch you visit Hinkhagone, a Palaung village. The path goes up and down and along the way, you will see plantations for tea leaves, coffee, cordial leaves, mustard, ginger, malt rice, cabbage, cauliflower and sesame. Late afternoon you will arrive in Teetain, a typical Pao village. We will see a lot of native plants along this way especially Ginger. Dinner and overnight in the village.

Overnight in Monastery
Meals: (Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner)



Htee Tein – Trek to Than Daung – Inle Lake

Morning
After breakfast continue the 5 hour trekking trip to the shore of Inle lake. The trail goes through beautiful scenery of bamboo forest. The native people of Pao, Taung Yoe and Intha along the way grow their fruits; banana, papaya, potato and beans. Lunch at lower Thandaung village.

Afternoon
Following lunch you transfer by boat to your hotel in Inle Lake. Rest of the day free at your own leisure.

Overnight in Inle Lake
Meals: (Breakfast/Lunch/_)



Inle Lake – In Dein & Ywama

Morning
Enjoy a full day tour by boat in Inle lake. The five Buddha images of Phaung Daw U Pagoda are the holiest in Inle Lake. Next, visit a unique monastery on Lake Nga Phe Kyaung, near Ywama village where the local monks have trained the cats to jump through hoops. It is now affectionately known as the jumping cat Monastery. Then, you will visit the fascinating village of Indein, with its complex of ancient shrines and stupas and walk though exotic colonnades of stairways and shop stalls.

Afternoon
You’ll visit the “long neck” tribal women, and weaving and craft villages perched on stilts. See the lake’s unique “leg rowers” – the Intha people row standing up with one leg wrapped around an oar. It is a feast for the senses and a photographer’s dream.

Overnight in Inle Lake
Meals: (Breakfast/Lunch/_)



Inle Lake – Flight to Yangon – Kyaikhtiyo (Golden Rock)

Morning flight back to Yangon. Then, leave Yangon and enjoy a scenic journey by road to Golden Rock (Drive via Bago: 194 km – 5 hours).

On the way, stop to visit the Allied War Memorial Cemetery at Htaukkyant. Then, arrive at Golden Rock base camp and take an open truck to the ‘upper area’ about 1 hour. Once at the pagoda, you can enjoy a spectacular view, which is particularly beautiful at sunrise or sunset. The whole site has a magical feeling.

Overnight in Golden Rock
Meals: (Breakfast/_/_)



Kyaikhtiyo (Golden Rock) – Kinpun – Hpa An – Kyauk Kalap Pagoda

Depart Kyaikhtiyoe, in the early morning when the sun is still rising, stroll around the hill sites and return to hotel for breakfast. Then back to base camp by the truck. Arrive at base camp, and start with a scenic drive to Hpa An, visiting several fascinating sites along the way. Just outside of the city, guests will stop at Kha Yon Cave, a beautiful natural cave where locals come to worship and pray for good health and prosperity. In addition to the many Buddha statues, the cave also contains many beautiful stalagmites and stalactites which have formed over the centuries.

The next stop will be Kadoe Kawnat village, where guests will visit Kawnat Monastery. This magnificent monastery with its beautiful woodcarving was built a century ago by a villager named U Nar Ouat, who was famed for his wealth and generosity. It was because of his donation that this religious site was built nearby his village. Upon arrival at Hpa An, you will first visit Kyauk Kalat, a pagoda which is built on layers of natural rock formations. Flanked by a lake, the scenery guarantees a great photo opportunity.

Finish the tour transfer to the hotel for check-in.

Overnight in Hpa An
Meals: (Breakfast/_/_)

Hpa An – Mount Zwekabin Trek – Saddan Cave

This morning, you will proceed to the foot hill of the 722-meter-high Mt. Zwe Kabin. This sacred mountain has several thousand identical Buddha statues lined up at its base. Then, you will visit Saddan Cave.

Overnight in Hpa An
Meals: (Breakfast/_/_)

Hpa An – Kawgun Cave – Yangon

After breakfast, you will visit to Kawgun Cave, also known as the “Cave of the Ten Thousand Buddhas”. When walking through the cave, you will see more than 2,000 votive tablets of Lord Buddha and Mon inscriptions. One inscription is so ancient that, to this day, no scholar has been able to interpret it. Then, drive back to Yangon.

Overnight in Yangon
Meals: (Breakfast/_/_)

Train Ride – Sule Pagoda – Colonial Walking Tour – Shwedagon Pagoda

Morning
After breakfast, drive to train station for the train ride for about 1 hour. Enjoy the authentic lifestyle of locals and take in the beautiful scenery. Then, enjoy private tour and drive through downtown to explore the city centre and its fabulous mix of architecture and sites. The streets are filled with historical buildings, many of which have a faded colonial charm not seen elsewhere in Asia.

Afternoon
Continue with a walking tour of the colonial street. You’ll start at the post office – a lovely historic building, pass by the Strand Hotel, the Buddhist landmarks of Sule Paya, Mahabandoola Garden and Independence Monument along the way.

Stop for a photo at the Karaweik Hall royal floating barge. Nothing will prepare you for Shwedagon Pagoda, with its glittering gold stupa. At the pagoda observe local pilgrims and monks offering their devotions and enjoy the amazing sunset view at Shwedagon Pagoda.

Overnight in Yangon
Meals: (Breakfast/_/_)

Departure Yangon

After breakfast, day at leisure until your private driver collect you from your hotel and transfer you back to Yangon airport for your International departure flight.

Meals: (Breakfast/_/_)

Useful Information

This tour is built upon our firsthand knowledge & experience, offering you the best choices available. The price of this trip varies depending on the number of people in your party, dates of departure, and availability of ground services. Please click on REQUEST A FREE QUOTE (above) and supply the required information, enabling us to send you your personalized quote within 24 hours!

Note: Amendments CAN be made to this tour to suite your requirements.

What’s Included?

  • Accommodation with daily breakfast at selected hotels
  • Private Vehicles and Drivers
  • Private English Speaking Guides (Other languages if available, upon request)
  • Meals as mentioned in the itinerary (B= Breakfast, L= Lunch, D= Dinner)

  • Domestic flights within Myanmar
  • Entrance fees for all mentioned sights visited
  • Service Charge & Government Taxes

What’s Not Included?

  • Your International Flights to and from Myanmar
  • Myanmar entry Visa Fees (contact us for further information)
  • Personal Expenses (such as laundry, telephone, drinks, etc.)
  • Any bank fees or charges at your end

  • Meals other than those mentioned in the itinerary
  • Personal Travel Insurance
  • Tips for guides and drivers

How to Plan a successful Trip to Myanmar, Step-by-Step

Myanmar (previously known as Burma) is a perfect destination for travelers looking for a unique get-away to a beautiful and exotic locale. This tropical country offers travelers an amazing landscape and a rich cultural heritage, influenced by Southeast Asia’s traditions. However, as a country that has only just recently opened its doors to tourism, Burma still retains an air of mystery, making it all the more intriguing.

With nearly 2,000 miles of coastline and a handful of mountain ranges, Myanmar has more than its share in natural beauty. Trek through the rolling green hills, discover Sagar to the south of Inle Lake, cycle to markets and ruins, boat around floating villages, sample well-spiced Burmese cuisine, and visit mysterious temples. You will get to not only discover, but also really live in this unique cultural atmosphere.

In exploring Myanmar, you will also enjoy the perfect combination of luxury and adventure.

Most popular sites of Myanmar

• Breathtaking Bagan bags a well-deserved top spot on this list of the best places to visit in Myanmar. Seeing Bagan by the hot-balloon is becoming increasingly popular, and offers a truly unique view of this 26-square-mile land of temples.

• The Shwedagon Pagoda, also known as the Golden Pagoda, is a gilded stupa located in Yangon, Myanmar. The 99-meter-tall (325 ft) pagoda is situated on Singuttara Hill, to the west of Kandawgyi Lake, and dominates the Yangon skyline.

• Inle Lake – for an excellent view of the verdant, bucolic side of Myanmar.

• U Bein Bridge – the longest and oldest teakwood bridge in the world

• Kyaiktiyo Pagoda (Golden Rock ), a small pagoda built on the top of a granite boulder covered with gold leaves pasted on by its male devotees.

• Shwenandaw Monastery is a historic Buddhist monastery located near Mandalay Hill, Mandalay Region, Myanmar.

• National Kandawgyi Gardens – home to over 500 different flower species

• Bagaya Kyaung – a 200-year-old Buddhist monastery

Like most Southeast Asian countries, Myanmar has two main seasons: dry and wet.
The dry season runs from October to May, and the wet season from June to October. Generally, most people prefer to travel during the drier months, but even during the wet season, the northern and central regions of Myanmar are cooler and drier than the southern parts, making year-round travel possible.

Most foreign nationals require a visa to enter Myanmar. Visa-free travel for 14 days, or longer in some cases, is permitted only to citizens of Thailand, Singapore, Vietnam, Philippines, Indonesia, Brunei, Cambodia, and Laos.

E-visa

In addition to getting visas at embassies and consulates, Myanmar has an online e-visa system. It is designed to make the process of application simpler for visitors – particularly those from countries that do not have a Burmese embassy. For e-visa applications, please visit the official Ministry of Immigration e-visa website.

E-visas are currently only valid for entry at Myanmar’s three main international airports: Yangon, Mandalay and Nay Pyi Taw, as well as overland travel to Myanmar via the Thai-Myanmar border points of Mae Sai / Tachileik, Mae Sot / Myawaddy and Ranong / Kawthaung only. The e-visa is not valid for China, India, Thai or any other land border entry points.

Tourist visas are valid for 28 days and costs around USD$50, which can be extended an extra 14 days at a cost of USD$3 per day, plus a one-time USD$3 administration fee. It is important to be ready with the correct change at your departure point as change will not be provided. Bear in mind that if you overstay, you might encounter some difficulties booking travel and/or hotels during your overstay period, as not all service staff are aware of the overstay allowance.

Notes

Do not apply for your visa too early: the period for visa validity (i.e. your Burmese entry date) may range from 1 to 3 months.

Do not apply for your visa too late: embassies and consulates can take 2 weeks or more to process your application, but this varies from country to country. If you are from a country that does not have a Burmese embassy or consulate, it will take longer still.

If you wish to apply for a physical visa, the visa photo criteria are 5 cm high x 3.5 cm wide on a white background, no glasses and no smiling.

You must have a passport that is valid for at least six months after your departure from Myanmar.

Booking your holiday with Indochina Pioneer cannot be easier! Follow our 3 simple steps:

Step 1: Browse our website www.indochinapioneer.com for tours, cruises and other destination information.

Should you find something that matches your interest, fill in the REQUEST A FREE QUOTE forms. Can’t find something that fits your needs? Then fill the BUILD YOUR OWN TRIP or CONTACT US form and click SUBMIT.

Then sit back! One of our travel experts will get back to you shortly with our customized package and most favorable offer!

In a hurry? Don’t like filling forms? Then call +84 982 116 630 (Mr. Lam) or +84 983 145 799 (Mr. Quyen). We’re available 24/7 and would be more than happy to talk! Certainly, your request will be carefully noted and a nicely crafted package with a pleasant price will follow!

Step 2: Reviewing/ Customizing our offer!

It’s your holiday so everything should be exactly what you want! We encourage your careful review of what we offer, letting us know what changes you would like to make. We’ll be more than happy to fine-tune the tour to fit best your interests, budget and time! This step may require several emails/call exchanges until perfect!

Step 3: Confirming/Paying/ Packing for the trip!

Once you’re satisfied with the customized tour, please let us know and Indochina Pioneer will need a few working hours to place reservations for all of the tour services. As soon as the availability and reservations of the services are confirmed, we will request a deposit. Please refer our Payment Guide for more details.

Once your deposit is received by Indochina Pioneer, we will send you the service voucher which confirms all the services of the tour and provides ground contact details and a guide for the final payment schedule.

And then you start counting down the day for your most fabulous trip!

Booking Amendment & Cancellations:

Booking Amendment: Flexibility is our strongest point. You can amend your booking even after it is made. Just contact your salesperson or contact us at sales@indochinapioneer.com with your booking number. Our reservations team is glad to amend your booking with your preferable alternatives. Please kindly note that you will be responsible for any change of the final price caused by your amendment requests.

Travel smart with Indochina Pioneer!

Packing Checklist – Be sure to check them all 😉

Essentials

  • Travel documents (passport, visas, travel insurance certificate, air tickets, tour voucher)
  • Money (cash, credit card, debit card, traveler’s cheques and money pouch)
  • Day pack for your personal needs during the day
  • Camera and extra memory cards and batteries
  • Cell phone and cell phone charger
  • Laptop charger (if you are bringing your laptop)
  • Travel plug/international adapter
  • Medication (including a doctor’s letter if you are carrying a large amount of medication)
  • Prescription glasses / contacts and if necessary, contact lens solution

 

Best to bring along

  • First aid kit
  • Toiletries
  • Sunscreen
  • Insect repellent
  • Refillable water bottle with filter

 

Wardrobe

  • Comfortable walking shoes
  • Comfortable clothing, either light or heavy options, depending on the season you are travelling
  • Clothes suitable for visiting temples (long pants / skirts, long sleeved tops)
  • Waterproof jacket / raincoat / umbrella
  • Hat & sunglasses
  • Bathing suit

 

Optional comforts

  • Ear plugs & eye mask
  • Sleep sheet for home stays / trains
  • Lightweight travel towel
  • Local language phrasebook