This program explores the country from Yangon – the garden city and the main gateway to Myanmar, Bagan – one of the richest archeological sites in Asia, Mandalay – the cultural centre, Amarapura – the city of Immortality, Sagaing – the Place of Meditation and Mingun – the home of the world biggest ringing bell. The local people and the amazing culture combined with the stunning landscape that you’ll see on this trip are breathtaking.
Transportation between each destination is by domestic flight on Air Mandalay, Yangon Airways or Air Bagan. The airlines operate throughout the year.
The charter boat from Mandalay to Mingun is made of wood and traditionally built. It is a very pleasant and interesting trip with plenty to see along the way – fishing villages, bullock carts, corn fields, market boats and people going about their every day life alongside the river.
Arrive Yangon international airport and be welcomed by your personal tour guide.
Transfer to your hotel for check in, after that start your Yangon city tour. This will include the Sule Pagoda in the heart of the city and the Chauktatgyi Pagoda, one of the largest reclining Buddha images in Myanmar. Enjoy a special evening visit to the massive Shwedagon Pagoda – famous worldwide for its golden stupa, it is the ‘Heart’ of Buddhism in Myanmar. The Pagoda is believed to be 2,500 years old and the central stupa is surrounded by dozens of intricately decorated buildings and statues.
Overnight in Yangon.
After breakfast, you’ll take an early morning domestic flight to Bagan to discover its glorious past and amazing history. Bagan is situated in Central Myanmar on the eastern bank of the mighty Ayeyarwaddy River. You’ll arrive at Nyaung U Airport in the new township and check in at your hotel. The whole day is spent sightseeing Bagan’s most important temples and pagodas ranging from temples with the earliest wall paintings to the original classic style pagoda’s that influenced the designs of later Buddhist monuments. Tour highlights include the colorful Nyaung Oo Market, and Shwezigon Pagoda – built by King Anawrahta in the early 11th century as a religious shrine. Then we go to the Ananda Temple – King Kyansittha’s masterpiece and the crowning achievement of the early style temple architecture. Next is Thatbyinnyu Temple – the highest building on the Bagan plain. After that we visit the Htilominlo Temple – the largest temple in Bagan – noted for its fine plaster carvings and glazed sandstone decorations. In the afternoon we observe the process of making traditional lacquer ware, one of Myanmar’s best known handicrafts and a specialty of Bagan. Then we visit the Manuha Temple, Myingabar Gubyaugyi Temple – an early period Pyu-style temple of Hindu influence with some of the oldest mural paintings in Bagan and Dhamanyangyi Temple noted for its remarkable brickwork. Lastly we watch the sunset over the Ayeyarwaddy River from either the Buphaya or Shwesandaw Pagoda.
Overnight in Bagan.
After breakfast at the hotel, we transfer to the airport for our 30 minute flight to Mandalay. This commercial centre and cultural tourism site was established in 1857 by King Mindon. We arrive at Tada Oo International airport and travel directly to the ancient city of Amarapura. We next visit the Mahagundayone Monastery and observe the daily life of the monks. This is a great opportunity to take some memorable photos of the monks as they parade for their daily meal. We travel a short distance to the U Bein Wooden Bridge that crosses the Taung Tha Man Lake. At 1.2km long it is the world’s longest teak bridge. Then we drive to Sagaing and visit the Kaung Mu Daw Pagoda which is a copy of the famous Mahaceti Pagoda in Sri Lanka. We also visit the Sagaing Hill Meditation centre. Finally we drive to Mandalay and check in at the hotel.
Overnight in Mandalay.
After an early breakfast at the hotel we transfer to the jetty for our boat trip to Mingun. Visit Mingun’s unfinished Pagoda and the Mingun Bell, one of the world’s largest hanging bronze bells and the Myatheindan Pagoda. After sightseeing in Mingun we cruise back to Mandalay. In the afternoon we visit the Mahamuni Buddha Image, Zegyo Market and some of Mandalay’s cottage industries, such as weaving and tapestry making, Burmese candy making, Bamboo fan making near the Eindaw Yar Pagoda, the Atumahsi Monastery and Shwenandaw (or Golden Palace Monastery). We also visit Kuthodaw (Maha Lawkamarazein) Pagoda, which is famous as the world’s largest book made of many stone slabs on which are inscribed the whole of the Buddhist scripture. Enjoy a panoramic view of the city from Mandalay Hill. Overnight in Mandalay.
Option 1: Mandalay Palace Tour
A two hour tour of the restored Mandalay Palace ~ This booking must be pre-arranged with your tour package.
Overnight in Mandalay.
After breakfast we transfer to the airport and fly back to Yangon. On the way to the hotel we visit Kabar Aye (the World Peace pagoda) and Maha Pasana (a famous Buddhist cave) then we check in at our hotel. After lunch we go shopping at Bogyoke Market (Scott’s Market) see hundreds of shops where you can find local products such as Gems, Jewellery, carvings, silks and many other traditional items. In the evening take a stroll through China Town where you can observe the traditional and modern lifestyle of the citizens of Yangon.
Option 1: War Memorial Tour
Visit the World War Two War Memorial (this will be of particular interest to British people).
Overnight in Yangon.
Breakfast at your hotel. You are at your leisure until your departure time.
Transfer to Yangon International Airport for your departure flight to conclude this unique experience.
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Yangon – Kandawgyi Palace Hotel or Traders Hotel or Similar
Bagan – Treasure Resort Hotel or Similar
Mandalay – Mandalay Hill Resort or Similar