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16-Day In-depth Myanmar Tour with Monastery Experience

Tour route: Yangon - Bago - the Golden Rock - Yangon - Heho - Pindaya - Kalaw - Inle Lake - Heho - Manalay - Bagan - Yangon

  • Tour code: MOT-MM-004
  • Tour Style: Private Tour (No Join-in Group Tour)
  • Price inclusions: All transportation mentioned in itinerary (flight, train, ship, private car, etc.); private guides & drivers, hotels, meals (based on your meal plan), and all service charges & taxes.
  • Travel date: private tour with flexible travel date
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Day 1: Arrival, Yangon Highlights Tour

Welcome to Yangon! Upon your arrival at Yangon International Airport, your guide will greet you and transfer you to the hotel. After freshening up, visit the 2,000-year-old Sule Pagoda to look at the local people going about their daily activities. And then head to Chaukhtatgyi Buddha Temple, a well-known Buddhist temple covered by an iron structure with corrugated iron sheets roof of six layers. Followed is a visit to Kandawgyi Lake by a royal floating barge.

In the afternoon, you’ll transfer to the Shwedagon Pagoda which is covered with hundreds of golden plates and the top of the stupa is encrusted with 4,531 diamonds. And you can enjoy the fabulous view of sunset over the pagoda there.

Overnight: Yangon

Day 2: Yangon - Bago - Kimpun Village, Pagoda Sightseeing

In the morning, leave for Bago, the ancient capital city of Pegu (1.5 hours’ ride). You’ll first take a leisure walk at a local market, and then admire the reclining Shwethalyaung Buddha, an important pilgrimage site for Buddhists who come here to pay homage to the Buddha. Next, visit the 1,000-year-old Shwemawdaw Pagoda. Followed is an exploration to Kyaikpun Pagoda which is best known for its four sitting Buddha statues facing the cardinal direction. 

In the afternoon, you’ll head to Kimpun Village by car (about 3.5 hours’ drive) to get to the Kyaithiyo Pagoda (also called the Golden Rock), a small pagoda perched at a mountain summit and covered with gold leaves. It takes certain efforts to get to the top on foot only (4-5km to walk), but it’s worthwhile to walk all the way to have the breath-taking views of the surrounding mountain ranges and spectacular sunset sights. 

Overnight: Accommodation near the Golden Rock
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 3: the Golden Rock - Yangon

In the morning, take some photos of the Golden Rock before leaving and back to Yangon (about 5.5 hours’ drive). On the way, stop at the Taukkyan War Cemetery, over 6,374 Allied soldiers who died in Burma during World War II were buried here. Enjoy the rest of the day for leisure after arriving in Yangon.

Overnight: Yangon
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 4: Yangon - Heho - Pindaya, the Pindaya Caves

In the morning, you’ll take the flight to Heho and then head to Pindaya. The road to Pindaya winds over the rolling hills of the Shan plateau through colorful mustard and wheat field. Upon your arrival, you’ll first visit the Pindaya Caves, an important Buddhist pilgrimage site that is cramped with thousands of Buddha images in all shapes and sizes. You’ll have a glimpse of the process of Shan traditional paper making nearby.

Overnight: Pindaya
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 5: Pindaya - Kalaw, Magwe Elephant Camp

In the morning, leave for Kalaw and transfer to Magwe Elephant Camp (about 45 minutes’ drive) for a unique experience with elephants. After a short break, walk to the river (about 5-7 minutes) where elephants take baths and you can have a great time feeding and bathing the elephants. Later, explore the forest area around the conservation area where you can find many species of butterflies, birds and orchids. Planting regional trees is an optional activity recommended for you. After that, return to the camp for a beautiful view through a valley and then back to Kalaw. 

Overnight: Kalaw
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 6: Kalaw Trekking

Today, you’ll start your 3-day trekking to learn about the traditions of the different ethnic minorities and enjoy continuously changing sceneries.

During the trekking, you’ll first get to Lu Pin, a village inhabited by the Danu tribe. Continue to Shar Pin Village (about 30 minutes) and proceed to Pann Lone Pagoda Hill (about 25 minutes) for a picnic lunch. Later, continue trekking to Linn Pan Village where the Pa O minority inhabits. After a short break, continue to reach NantThaleThe Village. Before passing through the villages, you’ll visit Thein Taung Pagoda Monastery, Aung Chan Tha Pagoda, Sutaungpyae Pagoda and the King Church

In the evening, enjoy a traditional dinner and stay with the friendly monks in a monastery for the night. The accommodation can be very basic, but it offers a unique experience overall.

Overnight: Monastery or local family in Kalaw
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 7: Kalaw Trekking

Today it’s another day full of incredible trekking. In the morning, you’ll walk pass several villages and old wooden monasteries (about 1.5 hours) of Shan State. After a short break at Htun Gone Village, for the next 3.5 hours, continue trekking through a stunning area, living many farmers and hill tribes, and proceed to HteeThaing Village where you can visit the beautiful wooden HteeTaing Monastery, which is also used as a school. Tonight you’ll have dinner and overnight stay at the monastery or a local family.

Overnight: Monastery or local family in Kalaw
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 8: Kalaw - Heho - Inle Lake, Phaung Daw Oo Pagoda

This morning, after a three-hour trekking through different Pa O villages with a panoramic view over the Inle Lake, you’ll take a break at Than Taung Village and have lunch at a monastery. After that, continue trekking to Inle Lake, the destination of the trekking. Transfer to the hotel by a motorboat. On the way, you’ll visit Phaung Daw Oo Pagoda, the central sanctuary of the lake that contains five sacred Buddha images covered in gold leaf. Later, stop at a cheroot factory to explore local crafts and classic Myanmar cigars. 

Overnight: Inle Lake
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 9: Inle Lake - Indein - Inle Lake

In the morning, go to Indein Village on the west end of Inle Lake for sightseeing. Take a boat traveling through a long channel where you can watch farmers cultivate their products and floating villagers’ daily life, all is so vivid and close than ever before. It is considered one of the most scenic boat tours on Inle Lake. 

In the afternoon, continue to explore a boat-making place, local blacksmiths workshops and incredible floating gardens in the village.

Overnight: Inle Lake
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 10: Inle Lake - Heho - Mandalay, Mandalay Highlights

In the morning, transfer to Nyaung Shwe Jetty by a boat and proceed to Heho to take the flight to Mandalay. Upon your arrival, your guide will meet you and take you to the hotel. 

In the afternoon, visit the Kuthodaw Pagoda which comprises of a gilded pagoda, hundreds of shrines housing inscribed marble slabs and several pavilions. Continue to Shwenandaw Monastery, the only major original teak wooden building left of the original Mandalay Royal Palace. Before ending the day, enjoy the spectacular sunset at Mandalay Hill.

Overnight: Mandalay
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 11: Mandalay, Monastery Highlights

Start the day with a visit to the 18th-century capital city, Amarapura, and attend the daily meal of over a thousand monks at Mahagandayon Monastery, the country’s largest monastery. Next, you’ll head to Ava, the capital city from 14th to 18th centuries and visit the old wooden Bagaya Monastery, the remains of the Royal Palace and fort, the Maha Aung Mye Bonzan Monastery and Htihlaing Shin Paya Pagoda.

In the afternoon, you’ll cross the bridge over the Irrawaddy River and take in the view from Sagaing Hill, the religious center covered with 600 white-painted pagodas and monasteries. The day ends with a walk at sunset over the 200-year-old U Bein Bridge, the longest teak bridge in the world, for an iconic sunset shot. 

Overnight: Mandalay
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 12: Mandalay Palace & Fort, Mandalay - Bagan

In the morning, explore the Mahamuni Buddha Temple, the most venerated image covered in over 15 cm thicknesses of gold leaf. Observe the laborious process of gold leaf beating on route.

In the afternoon, visit the Mandalay Palace and Fort where you can see what was the golden era of the Mandalay Kingdom was like. Later, your guide will escort you to the airport for your flight to Bagan. Upon your arrival, your guide will pick you up and take you to the hotel. The rest of the day is for you to spare.

Overnight: Mandalay
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 13: Bagan, Thousands of Temples Vista

In the morning, stop at the bustling NyaungOo Market and go to the Shwezigon Pagoda for an introduction into Bagan’s rich history. Later, visit Htilominlo Temple known for its plaster carvings and Thatbyinnyu Temple, the highest temple of Bagan. Continue to explore the Ananda Temple, an architectural masterpiece resembling a Greek Cross and one of Bagan’s most beautiful temples. 

Drop by a lacquer-ware workshop in the afternoon. After that, admire Manuha Temple and Nanpaya Temple. Next, you’ll explore the GuByaukgyi Temple, a temple noted worthy for its mural paintings of Jataka scenes under the protection of UNESCO. Later, transfer to Dhammayangyi Temple, a massive temple with the finest brickwork, and go to watch the sunset and have a bird’s eye view of thousand of temples over the Shwesandaw Pagoda.

Overnight: Bagan
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 14: Bagan, Free Day

Enjoy a free day in Bagon. Either having a good rest from days of travel or venturing out for more excitement on your own.

Overnight: Bagan
Meal: Breakfast

Day 15: Bagan - Yangon, Minnanthu Village

Optional: Riding a hot air balloon to have a bird’s eye view of the world-famous archaeological site of Bagan’s ancient kingdom on the plain in morning is an optional activity highly recommended for you (Seasonal activity available from October through March, on your own expense).
After that, continue your visit to the secluded Minnanthu Village. You’ll discover the strangely-designed Payathonzu Temple, Lemyentha Temple and Nandamannya Pahto Temple. Besides, explore the Nandamannya Cave Grotto (Kyat Kan Monastery) which is an extremely important place for meditation.

In the afternoon, you’ll take the flight back to Yangon.

Overnight: Yangon
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 16: Yangon, Departure

In the morning, walk leisurely around Bogyoke Aung San Market (formerly Scott’s Market). The market is rich in collection of Myanmar handicrafts, local goods and unique items for a good souvenir hunting. Later, your guide will accompany you to the airport for your return flight home.

Note: Market is closed on Mondays and public holidays.
Meal: Breakfast

Recommended Accommodation for Your Journey

It is no doubt your journey enjoyment will be increased by a good choice of accommodation. Our well-established network with key hotel chains around Indochina area will bring you more benefits of competitive rates and guaranteed hotel quality with availability.

We pick hotels for you based on:

Location: most of properties we selected are either located in downtown area with main city attractions or close by main transportations. These conveniences will certainly improve your holiday experience.

Facility & Service Quality: all hotels are inspected strictly and regularly, must be with great performance on accommodating English speaking customers, and excellent feedbacks from our pervious clients as well.

Variety in Choice: many styles and grades of hotels are available for different budgets, tastes and culture backgrounds.

 

Hotel Standards

3-Star Class It will meet the basic requirements for a comfortable stay, good size and clean guest rooms with AC, TV, hot water, shower and private bathrooms. On-site restaurants with breakfast included and lunch or dinner at your own pick up. A small fitness center or spa can be expected.

4-Star Class Across Indochina, a wide range of comfortable boutique hotels are available with shopping, dining and entertainment facilities nearby. Featuring quality service, fully furnished rooms, restaurants, fitness center with spa (and swimming pool in most cases), the hotels are expected to offer an above-average accommodation experience.

5-Star Class Top-notch services and an extensive range of facilities for an excellent accommodation experience. Multiple restaurants on site and a wide range of choice for buffet breakfast, good size of swimming pool, fitness center and concierge service round out the experience.

Meals

Normally Indochina Odyssey Tours includes two meals each day during tour: Breakfast and Lunch. You will have the freedom to make your own dinner choice.

Breakfast

It is normally served at the hotel where you stay. Depending on the hotel, the breakfast would be in western style, local style, or a combination.

Lunch

Lunches are usually set menu at handpicked local restaurant with comfortable dining environment where you can rest assure to taste the local flavor. All restaurants arranged by Indochina Odyssey Tours selected carefully and evaluated constantly based on customer feedback and our on-site inspection.

Dinner

Dinners will not be included in your meal plan unless you have that requirement. Enjoying the local food could be one of your best experiences in “tasty” Indochina area. This is why we provide you this flexibility of food choice. Your private guide will always give you good suggestions based on your preferences.

If you have certain food allergies or special requirements such as vegetarian food, let us know. We will do our best to accommodate your needs.

Private Guide & Transfer

You will have a private tour guide, private driver, and an air-conditioned vehicle escorting you at every destination you travel across Southeast Asia. This will provide you with maximized personal care, security, and flexibility

All tour guides of Indochina Odyssey Tours are qualified professionals and registered English Speaking Tourist Guides who are reassessed annually. All of our tour vehicles are clean and in excellent condition, manned with licensed & experienced drivers.

Private Tour Guide

You will always be greeted punctually on arrival at each destination airport. At every departure, you’ll be escorted & assisted until you have checked in and passed through the security checkpoint.

All of our tour guides in every destination are locals. Knowing the area well, they are good at guiding you around and telling background stories of the tour sites, as well as showing you the secret spots for best photos.

If any change of itinerary is needed for unexpected reasons, your private tour guides will be more than accommodating in suggesting alternatives to ensure that you always have a wonderful experience.

Private Vehicle & Licensed Driver

With our comfortable and safe private transportation, your tour will be more relaxing and less tiresome, keeping you in the best spirits to make the most out of your journey across Southeast Asia.

Your vehicle in each destination is air conditioned, insured, clean, and regularly maintained. Your private driver is licensed and always put your safety first.

Reviews on: In-depth Myanmar Tour with Monastery Experience

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4 reviews sorted by date


Clients: chris_f195

From: Australia

Travel Consultant:
Monica Mo
We have used Odyssey Tours before which is why we used them again for Myanmar. Their execution is faultless. The supplied guides spoke English at a high level and knew a great deal about their culture. Apart form Yangon, we went to Bagan, Inle Lake, Heho. Every place was well worth seeing and provided quite a contrast in some ways. The accommodation and included meals were al truly top rate. This is to be highly recommended
Rating: July 13th, 2017

Clients: Jaxter12186258

Travel Consultant:
Allison Chiang
Well this year it was Myanmar and our third trip organised by Allison at IOT, having previously been to Cambodia and Vietnam. It is a wonderful country slowly adapting to mass tourism. My recommendation - visit sooner rather than later whilst relatively unspoilt.

A super trip starting in Yangon with the Schewedagon temple, colonial buildings and walks around the local markets. We then went on to Bagan with the many ancient temples and stupas. Best seen from a balloon ride at sunrise and the trip organised with Oriental Ballooning did not disappoint. T the end of the day there were super sunsets in the peace and quiet of the plains. Our final stop was Mandalay which included a lovely river trip and a visit to Mingun. 

The accommodation was first class with a special mention to the Belmond Governor’s Residence at Yangon which was excellent. Aureum Palace at Bagan with a lakeside villa came a close second.

All our guides had excellent knowledge which they were keen to share and all spoke excellent english. It was nice to have a couple of lady guides for a change. The local drivers were excellent. 

Food during the day was varied and dietary requirements easily accommodated. 

We can not speak highly enough of Allison and her organisational skills and desire to help and adapt situations to meet our needs and make this another memorable holiday. Thank you and to all those behind the scene at IOT. 

Would I recommend IOT to organise a holiday? Yes, yes, yes.

Rating: April 15th, 2017

Clients: jemanz

Travel Consultant:
Nikki Xia
This was part of a 2 week tour we did with Odyssey. Our guide (Maw Hein) and driver were great. Having a local who knew all the tips and info made such a difference to our experience. There is so much we would have missed without his expertise. Thank-you Nikki from Odyssey for putting together such a great tour for us.

Rating: April 12th, 2017

Clients: Karabak

From: Australia

Travel Consultant:
Joan Qin
These guys are professionals. You couldn't do better. We travelled with Indochina Odyssey Tours over 3 weeks in Myanmar and they didn't miss a beat. Very personable guides, punctual, polite - would definitely use them again

Rating: March 29th, 2017
( 1-4 of 4 Reviews ) 1
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