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Highlights of Myanmar Tour

$3,195.00

Customize this eye-opening 12 day cultural adventure to Myanmar. This Highlights of Myanmar itinerary introduces you to a beautiful country with glittering golden stupas, bountiful rice paddies, picturesque mountain paths, and incredible cuisine. Bordered by India, Bangladesh, China, Laos, and Thailand, Myanmar is larger than France, and yet remains the least developed country in Southeast Asia. Hundreds of ethnic tribes have been living in the area for thousands of years and many have continued their centuries old, local way of life until now.

The country’s diversity is generally celebrated — Myanmar has official public holidays for almost every world religion, and sometimes joked about — with some healthy feeling of “competition and envy” for the better food, costumes, jewellery or other cultural differences from the various states.

The wonderful people of Myanmar LOVE to introduce foreigners to their country, culture, and especially their incredible cuisine. Burmese food hasn’t gotten the attention it deserves primarily due to its 50 years of isolation under a repressive military dictatorship. Myanmar is a country made up of many ethnicities, and each one has its special dishes and styles of cooking.

Dates: April to September (Green Season), October to March (High Season). Contact us for custom tour details!

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Highlights Include:

    • • Travelling through unique landscapes and archaeological sites on foot, by train, and by e-bike.
    • • Meeting with friendly locals and learning about their unique way of life
    • • Visiting an Elephant Conservation Project and helping mahouts bathe the elephants
    • • Exploring Myanmar’s many temples and pagodas
    • • Experiencing life on the beautiful Inle Lake
    • Admiring the spectacular landscapes and bustling markets

[/vc_column_text][/vc_tta_section][vc_tta_section title=”Itinerary” tab_id=”1449208778879-fcec8e78-e9ba”][vc_column_text]DAY 1: YANGON ARRIVAL
Meals: none – welcome drinks

Upon arrival Yangon International Airport, meet with the guide at the airport for a private transfer to the hotel.

Yangon Heritage Walk
Yangon downtown is unique with much of its colonial-era architecture still standing. You find one of Asia’s most impressive collections of late nineteenth and early twentieth- century buildings, religious and secular.

Starting after lunch this walking tour will take you a step back in time, through downtown Yangon, focusing on its old colonial buildings, neglected or purposefully restored. Stop at the Secretariat (closed on Sunday), scene of the nation-stopping assassination of General Aung San which has been closed off to the public for over since the 1960s.

After the tour you will have time to enjoy a drinks at Gekko, a cosy restaurant on Merchant Street in a historical building.

Overnight: Savoy Hotel, Deluxe Room

DAY 2: YANGON
Meals: B L

Breakfast at the hotel.

Spiritual Shwedagon Pagoda
So what’s behind the golden façade of the Shwedagon Pagoda? During this interactive half day tour we take you through the back door and show you the full history of the pagoda, the daily life of all people living in the immediate surroundings of the pagoda and a deeper insight in the Buddhist religion and how the spiritual belief is mixed with the belief in nats – the Myanmar spirits.

An intriguing half day tour starting from the bottom of the hill and passing the workshops, markets and monasteries which will be useful or even essential to understand more of the country during the rest of your journey. The tour includes a traditional Burmese breakfast, offerings to monks and the pagoda, a visit to a fortune teller and a Burmese lunch.

Rest of the day free at leisure.

Overnight: Savoy Hotel, Deluxe Room

DAY 3: YANGON – MANDALAY – BAGAN
Meals: B L

Breakfast at the hotel.

Your guide will meet you at the hotel and transfer to airport for your flight to Mandalay (RGN-MDL 07:00-08:25 K7 244).

Upon arrival Mandalay, meet with the guide at the airport and we will visit U Bein Bridge before we continue drive to visit Burmese star tortoise at the Minzontaung Wildlife Sanctuary.

The Burmese Star Tortoise
The Burmese star tortoise is an endangered species originally from the dry zone in Myanmar and in urgent need of protection. The Minzontaung Wildlife Sanctuary has been doing an excellent job in breeding tortoises and setting them back out in the wild and we take you to this simple but unique project to walk with their rangers through the forest (all together about 1–1.5 hr) with a tracking device to locate some of the tortoise in the wild and continue for a glimpse inside the breeding centre to see more of the tortoise. The simple visitor centre gives you more information about this endangered and oh so cute little animal. The walk is not compulsory and also without a visit to the rangers station you will learn a lot about the tortoise and see them at the breeding centre. Your visit supports the project.

After the visit to the tortoise centre we continue for lunch at a nearby restaurant before heading to Pakkoku.

A 2 hours leisurely drive to Pakkoku where a private boat is ready for you at the jetty in Pakkoku for a leisurely boat trip downriver to Bagan. If time permits we stop to visit Kyauk Gu Ohnmin cave temple that rarely sees foreign visitors.

Overnight: Bagan Lodge, Villa

DAY 4: BAGAN
Meals: B L

Breakfast at the hotel.

THIS IS BAGAN!
A full day tour by car, with an experienced guide through Bagan will show you the best known temples of the area. We start the day climbing a pagoda to get a first impressive view over the whole area. From here the guide plans his way to some of the other amazing temples that have been here for hundreds of years. Places like the Ananda, Dhammayangyi, Sulamani, and Thatbyinnyu will certainly impress you.

A PICNIC LUNCH
Minnanthu is probably the favourite temple area amongst frequent Bagan visitors and you know why? It’s quiet, it’s a beautiful area and the temples here are often completely deserted. The guide brings you by car to this forgotten part of Bagan and will spread out a blanket and serve you a great picnic lunch in this historical setting.

After lunch, we will have an explanation of other Bagan excursions.

Around 4pm we continue the tour by horse cart to a pagoda for sunset with some refreshing drinks served! Oh… we forgot to mention the best part of this tour; whenever you see a temple you like, just ask you guide to stop to have a look at it – simply pick your own favourite temple.

Overnight: Bagan Lodge, Villa

DAY 5: BAGAN BY E-BIKE
Meals: B L

Breakfast at the hotel.

E-Bike & Temple View Swing
Bagan is an ancient city of Myanmar – the stunning landscape of ancient temple ruins that seem to be spread around randomly in between toddy palms and bamboo huts. During this half day electric biking tour, the guide will show you some of the most spectacular sceneries of ancient lesser-known temples and the best of all is that you can stop any time, any minute to make some beautiful pictures. At the end of the trip, enjoy the fun thing of swing ride between palms tree while some healthy vegan juices and snacks are served.

Lunch at the local restaurant.

Sundowners on a Sandbank – Sunset tour
We’ve decided that you have to stay at least 2 nights in Bagan; one to see the sun go down from the top of an ancient temple, the other one to take a boat ride on the mighty Ayeyarwaddy River and have some sundowners on a sandbank in the middle of the river (if the river is not too high). A private boat tour on the river during sunset time will hopefully show you a spectacular sunset while your guide will be serving cocktails and some snacks.

Overnight: Bagan Lodge, Villa

DAY 6: BAGAN – HEHO – KALAW
Meals: B L

Breakfast at the hotel.

Your guide will meet you at the hotel and transfer to airport for your flight to Heho (NYU-HEH 09:35-10:15 K7 244).

Upon arrival, meet with the guide at the airport and transfer to Elephant conservation project.

Trekking in Forest and Visit to Elephant Conservation Project
We will take you to the Green Hill Valley Elephant Conservation Camp for a rewarding day in the forest surrounding Kalaw encountering elephants, their mahouts and people living in the surrounding.

Young tourism professionals originating from Kalaw decided to set-up a project in Kalaw that is focused on protecting the nature, elephants and traditions of local people living in an area close to Kalaw. In a big part of this private protected forest the nature can grow undisturbed creating a natural habitat for animals that could otherwise be easily hunted down and killed. The sustainable project includes creating a natural environment for some Myanmar elephants from this part of the world and helping the local population to grow out of the vicious circle of poverty through education and job creation.

We go by private car from the airport to the starting point of the trekking and walk leisurely, mainly downhill, through the forest for about 1,5 – 2 hrs.

We arrive at the main camp where the specialized staff will explain you more about their project and daily activities at the camp.

A delicious lunch with local specialities (often from Nepalese origin) will be served in in the camp and you will help planting trees.

After lunch it is time to help the mahout washing and feeding the elephant and we drive back in the afternoon to the Kalaw town.

Overnight: Kalaw Heritage Hotel, Deluxe Mountain View

DAY 7: KALAW – PINLAUNG – TRAIN TO LOIKAW
Meals: B L

Breakfast at the hotel.

A Former Shan Palace and a Scenic Train Ride
From Kalaw, we bring you by car to Pinlaung (about 2 hours’ drive) where you are being welcomed by a local family who will take you on a short walk to visit the leftovers of old wooden palace from the last Sawbwa (prince) of the Pinlaung principality. If permitted we pay our respect to the over 80 year old former princess who is still living in the compound.

The train schedule is often changing and exact timing and routing might slightly change, we will choose the best option available for you.

Optional: Hop on – hop off by train & mountain bike
We start in the morning from Kalaw by car and do parts of the trip by train and parts of it by mountain bike. As the train through the mountains is so slow it’s possible to bike faster than the train. So if you bike fast enough you can hop off the train, hop on your bike and catch the same train again at the next station. A fun way to compete between yourself and the train and enjoy a beautiful scenery in the Shan hills. Yes, there are hills in the Shan hills so some parts are uphill while other parts are downhill.

We have a simple Shan lunch at the host families home and around 15:00 drive to train station in Pinlaung where we say goodbye to our Shan guide and take the train (leaving around 15:45) for a scenic trip to Saung Byaung (arrival around 17:10).

Your Kayah guide is waiting for you at the train station to welcome you and bring you to Loikaw by car (about 1.5 hours’ drive).

Overnight: Keinnara Loikaw, Deluxe Room

DAY 8: VISIT KAREN (LONG NECK) COMMUNITIES & TREKKING
Meals: B L D

Breakfast at the hotel.

The Dutch organization CBI has set-up a program in Kayah state to ensure that communities benefit from tourism and organize excursions in a sustainable way. 2 of their projects will be visited during the stay in Loikaw.

We start the morning with a visit to the always bustling morning market in Loikaw and the former palace of the Kayah prince.

Trail of the Ancestors Trek and “Long Neck” Villages
Continue by car to Pemsong village where we start a trekking: Trail of the Ancestors.

During about 2 hours a local community guide will walk along with you and the translator guide and tell the story of their ancestors including all beliefs in spirits, the importance of the totem pole and herbal medicines. The first 30 min is uphill followed by mainly flat parts, the views are always stunning and a delicious picnic lunch is served half way.

From here we continue to Kasae Kum village where we will see some local handicrafts like bracelet making, bamboo cups, weaving and sculptures. An excellent opportunity to learn about the legends of the longneck women.

The trip ends in one of the Kayah villages where you will meet more Long Neck women.

We drive towards Loikaw.

In the evening it’s time to meet a local family and enjoy a home cooked typical Kayah dinner including the famous Kayah sausages and sample some typical Kayah liquor at a local family house.

Overnight: Keinnara Loikaw, Deluxe Room

DAY 9: LOIKAW – PEKON – PHAYA TAUNG
Meals: B L

Breakfast at the hotel

Kayah Village Walk & BBQ Lunch at 7 Lakes
In the morning we visit by car the Hta Nee La Leh and meet some of the community members who explain (translation by your guide) their shrines where animist traditions are practiced. An easy stroll through the community. Continue by oxcart for a 30 min scenic ride to the 7 lakes where a Kayah Barbecue lunch has been set-up for you.

Shortly after lunch we drive to Pekon where you say farewell to Kayah State and continue by private boat over the wide Pekon Lake in about 2 hours to Samkar Lake.

In the evening, simply relax at the Inle Sanctuary to watch the sunset.

Overnight: Inle Sanctuary, Lodge Room

DAY 10: PHAYA TAUNG – SAMKAR – INLE LAKE BY PRIVATE BOAT
Meals: B L

Breakfast at the hotel

Visit in the morning the monastery in the Samkar village with guide.

We return into the direction of Inle Lake by private boat and guide and start with a visit of the Samkar monastery and the Samkar village. We continue a private boat ride to visit Hmawbi temple ruins, pottery production in Kyauk Taing, floating gardens, villages on stilts on the lake and other sights the lake is famous for. A packed lunch will be served during the visits.

We arrive to the hotel in Inle Lake at the end of the day.

Overnight: Sanctum Inle Resort, Cloister Deluxe

DAY 11: INLE LAKE
Meals: B L

Breakfast at the hotel.

Hop on – Hop off Biking and Boating around Inle Lake Visiting Inle Lake is not just about being on the water but also about discovering the Shan and Intha villages on the banks of the river. From you hotel we have a full day by bike and boat starting with a boat ride to Indein village from where we bike to Than Htaung village (about 1,5 hr biking) where you can have a chat with the monks and visit local homes.

We continue by boat or bike (about 30 min – depending on water level) to Yay Mae Pin village where we visit an Areca nut plantation. Continue by boat to Khaung Dine for lunch in a local restaurant and bike in about an hour to the stop in Nyaung Shwe. From here you can choose to continue by bike or by boat to your hotel. A great day out in the nature!

Overnight at Sanctum Inle Resort, Cloister Deluxe

DAY 12: INLE LAKE – HEHO – YANGON – DEPARTURE
Meals: B L

Breakfast at the hotel.

Your guide will meet you at the hotel and transfer to Heho airport for your flight back to Yangon (HEH-RGN 10:30-11:40 K7 248).

Upon arrival, meet with the guide and starting the sightseeing.

Pampering and Shopping
An excellent half day tour at the end of your trip to Myanmar starting (or ending) with a lunch at Sharky’s restaurant – a local entrepreneur who is growing organic vegetables and producing locally made “French” cheese, ham and other delicious food. A 1 hour foot massage by blind or deaf people, trained by a local charity, is what you deserved after a long trip to Myanmar. Our specially selected shopping guide will bring you to whatever shop you like to find your final souvenirs to bring home, whether it is shopping for a longyi (local sarong), umbrella’s, old books, gold leaves or even a trishaw (bicycle taxi) or a contemporary painting – our specialist knows where to find it!

Car and guide available for additional visits until your departure flight to fly home OR extend your trip to THAILAND, VIETNAM, INDIA or ANYWHERE!

End of services

[/vc_column_text][/vc_tta_section][vc_tta_section title=”Inclusion & Exclusion” tab_id=”1449208780765-5fd2d40a-5e8d”][vc_column_text]Tour Inclusions:

    • 11 nights accommodations based on double occupancy

• Meals as per itinerary

• Local transportation (private vehicles, domestic flights)

• Excursions and entrance fees (as per itinerary)

• Services of Local guides

• Cooking classes as per itinerary

Tour Exclusions:

 

• International Flights (can be arranged through us [email protected])

• Mandatory travel medical insurance and optional cancellation insurance (can be arranged through us

[email protected])

• Meals and beverages not mentioned in itinerary

• Items of personal nature

• Services and entrances not mentioned above

• Passport and visa fees

• Tips for local guides, drivers, at restaurants, etc

• Entry Visa Fees, please visit https://evisa.moip.gov.mm/index.aspx for more details / submit your individual visa application.

 

[/vc_column_text][/vc_tta_section][vc_tta_section title=”Pricing & Dates” tab_id=”1449223591510-29ce0fb2-4171″][vc_column_text]Date: Upon Request

from $2895* USD per person based on double/twin occupancy
from $775 USD Single Supplement (Green Season), $995USD Single Supplement (High Season)

Please note that pricing will depend on number of participants and time of year.
Sept 2018, April to Sept 2019 (Green Season) is $2895USD based on double occupancy
Oct 2018 to Mar 2019 is $3195USD based on double occupancy

*Price is subject to change without notice.

Final Payment
Full payment is due 60 prior to departure.

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Air Travel
Flights are not included in the tour price. Do not purchase any airline tickets until the trip is confirmed to take place. Pre and post tours can be arranged through available at an additional charge. Please contact Finisterra Travel for further details [email protected]

Passport Information
Entry Visa Fees, please visit https://evisa.moip.gov.mm/index.aspx for more details / submit your individual visa application.
Please note that most countries require passports to be valid for 6 months from the date of your return flight. We are not responsible if you are refused entry to a country because you lack the correct passport, visa or other travel documentation.
[/vc_column_text][/vc_tta_section][vc_tta_section title=”Hotels” tab_id=”1449208780765-5fd2d40a-5e9d”][vc_column_text]Sample Hotels*:

Yangon: Savoy

Bagan: Bagan Lodge

Loikaw: Keinnara Loikaw

Kalaw: Kalaw Heritage Hotel

Inle: Sanctum Inle Resort

*Please note that hotels are just samples and are subject to change and availability.

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