Build Your Own Trip

Overview

  • Day 1: Arrival Yangon
  • Day 2: Yangon – Flight to Bagan
  • Day 3: Bagan - Day trip to Mt Popa
  • Day 4: Bagan – Flight to Mandalay
  • Day 5: Mandalay – Amarapura – Ava – Sagaing – Mandalay
  • Day 6: Mandalay – Flight to Heho – Pindaya – Inle Lake
  • Day 7: Inle Lake
  • Day 8: Inle Lake – In Dein – Heho – Flight to Yangon
  • Day 9: Depart 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 Yangon

Arrive in Yangon and meet your friendly local guide to welcome you and transfer to hotel.

Yangon, formerly known as Rangoon, is still a relatively quiet and charming city. Its impressive colonial and spiritual heritage makes Yangon one of the most fascinating and authentic capitals of Southeast Asia.

Afternoon, enjoy a city tour which includes the National Museum, Kyaukhtatgyi Pagoda’s 70m-long reclining Buddha. Visits continue to Myanmar’s holiest monument, the Shwedagon Pagoda with its golden stupa covered with 60 tons of pure gold leaf.

Local night market visit before transfer to the hotel.

Overnight in Yangon



Yangon – Flight to Bagan

Early breakfast (takeaway box) at the hotel, transfer to Yangon’s Mingaladon Airport for the flight to Bagan (Nyaung Oo). Thousands of ancient stupas and temples in this area have made Bagan one of the most remarkable archaeological sites in Asia. From the 11th till 13th century, when Bagan was the capital of Myanmar, the rulers constructed huge stupas and temples, many of which are still standing today on the banks of the Irrawaddy River.

On arrival, take on a morning sightseeing which features the colourful Nyaung Oo Market, the Shwezigon Pagoda, and its magnificent golden stupa, Wetkyi–In Gubyaukgyi, a cave temple with exquisite jatakas murals paintings and the elegant Htilominlo Temple noted for its fine plaster carvings and glazed sandstone decorations.

In the afternoon, visit Ananda, an architectural masterpiece of the early-style temple with two original standing Buddha images showing facial expression change, depending on the distance the statue is viewed from. The Ananda Okkyaung is one of the few surviving brick monasteries from the early Bagan period The next temple that you’ll visit, Thatbyinnyu, is the highest in Bagan, rising to 61 meters.

End the day with a horse and carriage tour among the temples passing by the traditional village of Taungbi, Sulamani Temple and the massive Dhammayangyi Temple noted for its remarkable brickwork. Then you can enjoy the sunset on the mighty Irrawaddy Rover by slow private cruise.

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



Bagan - Day trip to Mt Popa

After breakfast at the hotel, drive through the plains to Mt Popa. Mt Popa is a place of great importance to the Burmese as they believe it is the home of 37 Nats, ancient Burmese animist spirits. The spirits predate the arrival of Buddhism in Myanmar. The shrine is located on a volcanic plug, Taung Kalat.
Upon arrival, we will climb 800 stairs to the top, learn about nats and nat worship while climbing past many shrines and seeing many local pilgrims. Your hard work will be rewarded with an impressive view over the Myingyan Plain from the top of the volcanic peak.

After returning to the base, you’ll wind our way back to Bagan. Stop en route to visit Shwe Hlaing village. The people here make their living by producing various items from toddy palm trees. Here you will experience a Burmese-style tea party hosted by a local family. Try some famous tea leaf salad with a cup of Burmese tea. Then stroll around the village and see how they climb the palm trees and how they use the sap to make palm sugar and fiery liquor.

Enjoy lunch under the shade of the toddy palm trees. A traditional Burmese lunch will be served in this local setting: a memorable meal and chance to experience local lifestyles.

This evening, transfer to Nanda puppet show. Enjoy dinner while watching beautiful puppets acting out ten traditional scenes. Accompanied by a live orchestra, the show is one of the best puppet performances in Myanmar.

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



Bagan – Flight to Mandalay

After breakfast at the hotel, 8:00 am, take the private air-conditioned car to the Airport for the flight to Mandalay. On arrival, a sightseeing tour of Mandalay, Myanmar’s cultural capital, features Mahamuni Pagoda, famous for its venerable statue of Buddha covered with gold leaf. Mandalay has long been known as a centre of skilled craftsmanship and in former times supplied the Royal courts. A tour of traditional workshops includes crafts such as woodcarving, marble masonry, Kalaga tapestry, and gold leaf making.

After lunch, visit the Kuthodaw Pagoda with its 729 marble stone slabs of Buddhist scriptures (known as the world’s biggest book) and Shwenandaw Monastery, noted for its exquisite woodcarving. Enjoy the sunset from Mandalay Hill.

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



Mandalay – Amarapura – Ava – Sagaing – Mandalay

After breakfast at the hotel, depart for a full-day trip to the former capitals of Amarapura, Ava and Sagaing. The day will begin with a visit to the 18th-century capital, Amarapura. Attend the daily meal of over thousand monks at the country’s largest monastery; Mahagandayon. Visit a silk weaving workshop, the craft speciality of Amarapura. Then proceed to Ava, the capital from 14th to 18th centuries and visit the old wooden Bagaya Monastery by horse and carriage and the remains of the Royal Palace and fort.

In the afternoon, cross the bridge over the Irrawaddy River and continue to Sagaing. Covered with 600 white-painted pagodas and monasteries, Sagaing Hill is widely regarded as the religious centre of Myanmar and is home to 3,000 monks and 100 meditation centres. Finish the day with a walk at sunset over the 200 year–old U Bein bridge, constructed entirely from teak.

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



Mandalay – Flight to Heho – Pindaya – Inle Lake

Transfer to the airport for domestic flight to Heho in Shan State. Continue by car and enjoy a scenic drive to Pindaya through the picturesque countryside of Shan State. Visit Pindaya’s limestone cave with its maze of chambers displaying more than 8,000 Buddha statues and local handicraft workshops producing Shan Paper made from mulberry bark and traditional umbrellas made from the same paper that is used by monks all around the country.

Continue the trip to Inle Lake, one of Myanmar’s best–known sights. The Intha people, a tribe of Mon descent, mostly inhabit the lakeshores and floating villages. On arrival at Nyaung Shwe Village, check in at the hotel (for a hotel with a lake location, transfer by boat).

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



Inle Lake

After breakfast at the hotel, enjoy a scenic drive to Inle Lake, one of Myanmar best–known sights. The Intha people, a tribe of Mon descent, mostly inhabit the lakeshores and floating villages.
Start by visiting the famous floating market, five days rhythm by villages, except for full moon & moonless day. A sightseeing tour of Inle Lake including a chance to see the leg-rowing fishermen. Continue to see the floating gardens, built up from strips of water hyacinth and mud and anchored to the bottom with bamboo poles.

There are also floating villages like Ywama, the lake’s downtown, where a floating market is held every five days. In the afternoon continue visit to Phaung Daw Oo Pagoda, the weaving village of Inpawkhon and the jumping cat monastery.

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


Inle Lake – In Dein – Heho – Flight to Yangon

After breakfast, visit In Dein in the south of the lake by motorboat. From the middle of the lake, continue down a small canal leading to the village of In Dein, a recently opened area in Shan State. After a walk around the village, passing a local school, we’ll take the covered stairway to the beautiful Alaung Sitthou area where ancient stupas are partly covered by vegetation. From here there is a magnificent view over the lake. In the afternoon, transfer to Heho Airport for the flight back to Yangon.
On arrival transfer to hotel.

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



Depart Yangon

After breakfast finish the tour with a visit to downtown Yangon with its faded colonial atmosphere, Sule Pagoda, Mahabandoola Park, India town and bustling Chinatown. In the afternoon, there will be free time for shopping at Bogyoke Market, formerly Scott’s Market before transferring to Mingaladon Airport for onward flight.

Meals: (Breakfast/_/_)


Inquire this trip

We are a member of:

We are a fully licensed company:
License No: 01-327/2014/TCDL-GPLHQT

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

Client reviews

We are committed to giving our customers unforgettable experiences in Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia and beyond, not just something staged for tourists. Read reviews written by our customers about their experiences in Indochina after they have returned home. These include the ratings and comments on attractions, guides, activities, hotels and food.

Excellent 98%
Very good 2%
Average 0%
Poor 0%
Terrible 0%
ICP customer review
Candace
USA

"Amazing Trip!"

We wanted a trip for 2 of us, somewhat last minute, and didn’t feel like putting in all the effort to plan it. Hien skyped with us and put together a trip that was AMAZING. We loved Cambodia, but suggest 2 half-day tours of the temples instead of one or two all-day tours. You will get templed-out. Everything will blur together. Definitely try The Bug Cafe. It’s definitely something to talk about later. Our favorite city in Vietnam was Hoi An and we wouldn’t have thought of it if it wasn’t for Hien. Bring your favorite dress and they will remake it for you in 48 hours, buy leather, and try all the delicious food. We highly suggest adding on a cooking class or a lantern class. Hien even came and met up with us at the end of our trip to meet with us personally.

Aug 11, 2019
Trip Advisor
Customer feedback on TP
David Oliver
Spain

"All excellent"

All excellent. Fantastic travel agent. Elena was fantastic and very kind. A great professional. No doubt highly recommended.

Aug 10, 2019
Trustpilot
Trip advisor customer review
Elizabeth
New Zealand

"Very enjoyable tour by Indochina Pioneer!"

Used agent Lizzie who looked after us very well from start to finish. We wanted boutique hotels with pools as like to steer clear of large multinationals and each one selected was superb. We had done our research prior so knew where we wanted to stay so Indochina Pioneer was flexible. Coming from NZ, we found Halong Bay disappointing – polluted water and too many boats. But loved Luang Prabang, Laos just a 45 min flight from Hanoi. It was the highlight for us. No large tour groups & lovely colonial French architecture. Quieter than Viet’s hot spots. Buddhist culture, elephant conservation, serene waterfalls.
Lizzie kept in touch the whole way & adapted our itinerary as requested. Our guides in Hanoi and Laos were excellent. Use a Vietnam based agent like Indochina Pioneer to plan your land content. Nothing beats the local knowledge and back up if things go wrong. Thanks Lizzie & Indochina Pioneer for a great trip.

  

Aug 9, 2019
Trip Advisor
ICP customer review
Kyle
USA

"Fulfilled Promises – Use Indochina Pioneer when traveling to Asia"

For about a month, I solo traveled through Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia and enjoyed the most beautiful trips of my life. Although nervous about doing this trip alone, Mr. Lam Duong promised my safety came first. Each guide in each city took care of me like I was family. Everywhere I went throughout SE Asia, the guides and the locals make you feel at home. The sights are one thing, but the culture is true beauty. I had a blast every single day knowing I was safe, and knowing that I had a full itinerary every day. Each guide was flexible to the itinerary as well. If you are ever planning on traveling to Asia, I 100% recommend using Indochina Pioneer. My itinerary was fantastic, my guides took care of me, and the hotels were beautiful. Thank you again for all of your help Lam!

Must See Destinations: Hoi An, Sapa, Siem Reap, Luang Prabang.

ICP customer reivew

Jul 23, 2019
Trip Advisor
Simon Teevan
Saudi Arabia

"10 out of 10!"

Just back from a fantastic 2 weeks in Cambodia & Vietnam, all organised by the fantastic Kata Tran in Indochina Pioneer. Cannot recommend them highly enough. They gave us great options from which to choose in terms of places to visit, hotels to stay in, tours to take, etc. And, they were very flexible regarding any changes we wanted to make. All guides were great – all locals with great English and very knowledgeable. 10 out of 10!

Jun 15, 2019
Trip Advisors
Gan
United States

"Amazing Vietnam private tour"

This is the 1st time we’ve been to Vietnam and we absolutely love it.
Big thanks to Kata (our tour organiser), who has been very accommodating to our requests. The tour was well organised and everything flowed smoothly.
We stayed in Hanoi (2 nights), Halong Bay (1 night) and Hoi an (2 nights), wished we could have stayed longer. Great hotels with delicious breakfast, excellent halong bay cruise and friendly tour guides (Tony from Hanoi and Snow from Danang) and drivers.
Big thumps up to Indochina Pioneer.

Jun 2, 2019
Trip Advisors
Hermish Kumar
United Kingdom

"Wonderful stress free tour of Vietnam"

We had such a great holiday with Indochina Pioneer.The whole trip was so much fun and we saw and experienced so many beautiful things. Our guides were great Viet in Hanoi was superb – he spoke and understood English really well and took us to some different local places as we had discussed with him Yao in Sapa also spoke and understood good English and was really helpful on the trek
Banh in Hoi An / Hue had good English and was very informative
Sam in Ho Chi Minh had average English but he is so knowledgeable, helpful and easy to be with.
Pascal in Cambodia was really great and took us to some great locations for different photo opportunities

The hotels were also very good.

Boss Legend Hanoi – great
Sapa – rooms were a bit cold and we had to request a heater but much better the second night
Halong Bay – a fantastic trip would have loved to have stayed for longer!
Hoi An – lovely modern hotel – superb location
Hue – originally we declined a room on the 9th floor which we had been told would be noisy and were given a room on floor 6 – this was dark and we were moved the next day to a balcony room on floor 8 which was perfect.
Ho Chi Minh – lovely hotel and location
Siem Reap – lovely hotel and pool area

Overall everything Indochina Pioneer had booked for us went really smoothly and made our trip so enjoyable

We have already passed your details on to several friends back in the UK who are also contemplating a trip to Vietnam

I hope we will be able to use ICP services again on our future trips to Myanmar, Laos and China

May 22, 2019
Trust Pilot
Judy Garvey
Canada

"Enjoy the Indochina Pioneer Experience"

I have used this company twice to book a trip to Viet Nam and a 2nd trip to Viet Nam and Cambodia.
I have also recommended this company to many local friends. I was so happy and pleased with meeting my agent Kata Tran. She is wonderful person, extremely organized and so trustworthy. All of the recommendations that I made to friends were also thrilled with Kata’s service and the professionalism of Indochina Pioneer.
Not only do they provide competitive prices but they have private drivers and guides who are locals. As a result, tourists get a local perspective from very well trained professional guides. The accommodations, food and cars were top notch. Please don’t miss the Indochina Pioneer experience you will not be disappointed.

May 22, 2019
Trip Advisors
Tbalinger
Krakow, Poland

"Our fantastic Vietnam trip with Indochina Pioneer"

A couple of our close friends, my wife and I were planning to visit Vietnam for a while, but were not sure if we should do this on our own, or to use one of the travel agencies in Vietnam. A month or two later, a friend of my wife mentioned that she has just come back from Vietnam, used Indochina Pioneer to advise her on the itinerary and get trip organized. She told us she was totally impressed with them. Before contacting Nam Duong, we did some research and were fully impressed, as Indochina Pioneer’s reviews were outstanding. To make long story short, we asked Nam to prepare the itinerary for a two weeks tour of Vietnam. The response was prompt, we loved Nam’s proposal and two weeks later we were on our way.
Everything from the pickup at the airport, hotel choice, vehicles and especially the team of local guides were superb! We spent two weeks sightseeing and learning the history of Vietnam while visiting Saigon and Mekong delta, Hue, Hoi An, Danang, Hanoi and Ha Long Bay. We took millions of pictures and left with unforgettable memories of wonderful people we met during our trip and are grateful to Nam Duong and his team for getting this organized. We strongly recommend Indochina Pioneer. They did absolutely superb job. Thank you, Nam and your team!

May 2, 2019
Trip Advisors
Chris C
Las Vegas, United States

"Family Fun in Thailand"

Amazing Vietnam private tour
We stayed in Bangkok (3 Nights), Chiang Rai (1 Night), Chiang Mai (3 Nights) and had a guide the entire trip from the airport for pick up in Bangkok to the airport on departure in Chiang Mai. The tour was very well put together and Lam with Indochina Pioneer was more than accommodating to our changes for what probably seemed like a million back and forth emails. Aurora (our guide in Bangkok) was absolutely amazing, not only for us, but also our children (3 and 7). everything we mentioned she made sure we did or at least knew how to do it when we were done for the day with our tour. Our guide in Chiang Rai and Chiang Mai (Tree) was also amazing in showing us more than we could have imagined in Northern Thailand.

Apr 20, 2019
Trip Advisors