Today, Burma has become Myanmar. This wonderful country with many ethnic
From golden pagodas to floating gardens, from small villages to archaeological sites, from local markets to Burmese smiles, let yourself be captivated by Burma, This wonderful country with many ethnic groups holds unique treasures. To discover without delay, progress is on!
● The diversity of cultural evidence
● The spiritual life of local tribes
● The countryside authentic villages
● Archaeological sites in Mandalay and Bagan
● Unspoilt nature and the floating life on Inle Lake
Arrival in Yangon. Airport reception and transfer to your hotel. Depending on your arrival, you ‘ll have the possibility to venture into the colonial district, Chinatown and a local market to discover Burmese colors and smells. Overnight at the hotel.
Explore Bogyoke Aung San Market, a shoe and clothing market (closed on Mondays and holidays). Beautiful fabrics (batiks, silks, and cotton) are sold by the meter. Antiques and souvenirs are along the central alley. Continue your journey and head to the pagoda Chaukhtut Gyi - the tin roof of this pavilion shelters a colossal reclining Buddha of 70 meters long. The morning will end at the National Museum which displays interesting pieces, such as the lion-shaped Simhasana throne where sat Thibaw Min, the last Burmese king. In the afternoon, visit Shwedagon Pagoda, the most famous in the country for its 98 meters high stupa covered with gold. The setting sun darting its last rays on the golden dome offers a magical spectacle. Overnight at the hotel.
Leave the ancient capital and transfer to Kyaikto where the Golden Rock Stupa is located. Stop several times along the way to meet villagers and discover their daily life. Explore a large local market in Bego (80 km from Yangon). You’ll arrive at the end of the morning at Kin Pun camp, starting point of the Kyaikhtiyo ascent in a local van in the company of the faithful. At the top, enjoy the special atmosphere of the site all night long! Overnight at the hotel at the top of the Golden Rock
Today, a three-hour drive will take you to Hpa-An, the capital of Kayin (Karen). Discover on the way the harvest of latex and rice. Continue to a karst peak where you’ll find the cave of "Bayin Nyi Gu", a site known for its hot springs. A few kilometers further, visit another beautiful cave, the "Kaw-gun", whose walls are adorned with thousands of terracotta Buddha statuettes. Then continue to the foot of the sacred mountain of Karen "Zwe-gabin" to explore the Buddhist park "Lum-bi-ni" containing 1020 Buddha statues. Then, the other site "kyauk-kalut", which is a small peak in the middle of a lake offering a magnificent view of rice paddies. End the day with the paya "Shwe-Yin-Myaw, a pagoda on the banks of the river" Than-Lwin ". Overnight at the hotel.
Head to Mawlamyine, the fourth largest city in Burma and former capital of the British era. In addition to its rich history, this port city and its surroundings offer beautiful landscapes. In the afternoon, discover the city along the Thanlwin River. You will be surprised by the amount of colonial buildings still intact. Visit the Mon cultural museum (the main ethnic group of the region), then Mahamuni pagoda, the largest of the city. Overnight at the hotel.
Early in the morning, go to the Zawgyi Municipal Market. You will find mostly fabrics and household items as well as goods that "fell off a truck" between Singapore and Yangon. Continue your journey on a local boat, and sail to Gaungse Kyun (the island of the shampoo). This name comes from the fact that the kings of Burma used the water of this island to wash the hair during a special ceremony. Explore the everyday life of the local people and different pagodas. Overnight at a hotel in Mawlamyine.
Leave your hotel early for a short domestic flight to Mandalay, which was the capital of the country until 1885. Transfer to the Monastery of Tha Kya Dita to observe female monks, and a hundred young monks in an interesting ceremony where they pray and sing Buddhist songs before taking their only meal of the day. Then, by local boat, cross an arm of the Irrawaddy River to reach Ava, the former capital of the Burmese Kingdom from 1364 to 1841. A local carriage will take you on a discovery trip: first the Daw Gyan pagoda, the ancient palace with its observation tower Nan-Myint, some religious buildings lost in nature, then Kyaung Bagaya. This wooden monastery is supported by 267 teak pillars - the largest of which is 18 m high and 2.7 m in circumference. In the late afternoon, stroll on the teak bridge of U Bein, built in 1851, the ideal spot to watch the sunset.
After breakfast, start your journey at Zegyo Central Market. A short hike will take you to the banks of the Irrawaddy passing by small pagodas, craft districts and a flower market. Then hop on a boat and sail up the Irrawaddy River to Mingun. The sampan ride is long enough to appreciate fully the life of the river. Discover the site of Mantara Gyi, an unfinished pagoda that measures only one third of the planned height. Then visit Myatheindan pagoda (1817) and its gigantic hanging bell Mingun that weighs 90 tons. In the afternoon, explore the former royal palace and Shwe Nan Daw monastery, one of the most refined Burmese wood buildings. At the end of the day, climb Sagaing Hill to admire the sunset. From the top, 230 m above the plain, enjoy a beautiful panorama of the city beyond the crenellated ramparts of the palace, while to the east, in a bluish haze, are outlined Shan hills.
Before leaving Mandalay, visit Paya Mahamuni (The Great Sage pagoda) southwest of the city center. The main piece of this famous pagoda is a venerated statue of Mahamuni seated. This statue 4m tall statue was originally made in bronze but over the years, thousands of fervent Buddhists have completely covered in layers of gold leaf which currently measures at about 15cm thick.. Around Mahamuni, shopping streets will give you the opportunity to find Burmese souvenirs: bronze bells, teak wood statues and jade bracelets. Transfer to Bagan on the national road 2. Stop on the way at Ta Mait Tha village to take a short walk. Learn about the daily life of the Burmese by meeting with welcoming villagers and discovering local craft trades: basketry and a factory of traditional cigarettes. Arrival in Bagan in the late afternoon. Overnight at the hotel
Bagan (Pagan) is the most amazing site in the country, if not all of Southeast Asia. Today, you will have a big day exploring the Old Bagan, the heart of the archeological area. It contains the most important temples, the walls of the ancient city and a museum. First head to the colorful market of Nyaung U, an essential place in the local life. The journey continues, visit the Shwezigon Pagoda (the most revered in Bagan) and the Ananda Temple (the most beautiful one) originally dedicated to the infinite wisdom of the Buddha, and famous for its Indian architecture .
In the afternoon, visit the archaeological museum of Bagan which has on display a large number of religious representations and items found in the temples nearby. Next, a stroll in small villages will allow you to discover a typical rural life and some crafts: wickerwork and manufacture of lacquered products. Return to the hotel at the end of the afternoon.
An electric motorcycle is the perfect means of transport to explore Bagan area. Riding on paved roads and sandy paths with little traffic is pleasant and fun. Discover the imposing Dhammayangyi Temples, Htilominlo, Gubyaukgyi Temple in Myingabar with its stunning Jataka murals and create lasting memories. Continue your beautiful journey by venturing into monuments and bring your day to a peaceful end on the terrace of a temple - a perfect spot to admire the sunset.
4-5h electric motorcycle ride
After breakfast, head to Bagan airport for a flight to Heho. Upon arrival, transfer by private car to Pindaya to explore its famous caves and the daily life of its community: the Taung-yo ethnic group. Visit the caves by horse and cart and then on foot. Over the centuries, more than 8,000 Buddha statues have been laid there in different ways. Then, meet local artisans to learn about the manufacture of Shan paper made from mulberry bark, and the umbrellas they’re crafting with it. Overnight at the hotel.
1h flight and 2h30 drive
Hop on a sampan and navigate on the Inle Lake, one of the most important sites of Burma. Located 900 m above sea level, this large lake (15km long by 6-8km wide) has an irresistible charm. Villagers grow many varieties of flowers, vegetables and fruits: tomato, beans, cauliflower, cabbage, eggplant, garlic, betel, melon, papaya and banana. Visit remarkable floating gardens, and lake villages mainly inhabited by Intha. You will be amazed by the unique method used by the fishermen of the lake, and certainly charmed by the peaceful beauty of the lake itself. Venture into Nga Phye Chaung Monastery and Phaung Daw Oo Pagoda (5 golden Buddha statues). Stop to find about some craft trades: a traditional cigar factory, a fishing boat factory and a silver jewelry factory.
4-5h boat ride
Still by local sampan, visit one of the multi-ethnic markets of the region which take place once every 5 days. It could be either Nampan, Indiain, Maingthauk, Phaung Daw Oo or Ywama according to schedule. You will come across vegetables, fresh fish caught in the lake, Shan bags, farm implements, embroidered shirts and longis, tapestries, jewelry and all the usual memories. Then stop at Indein, the former Shan capital, to discover his garden of stupas. Get back to Nyaungshwe in the late afternoon.
Spend the day exploring the surroundings of Nyaungshwe. Visit Shwe Yan Pyay, a lively teak monastery inhabited by many monks and novices, then the hot springs of Khaung Daing. Seize the opportunity to swim in the communal pools. While walking in this village, you will realize that at least one family out of two is involved in handicrafts. The afternoon will be spent on a pleasant bike ride to reach the small hill of Taung Che. The path climbs gently up to reach the winery of "Red Mountain". Enjoy a wine tasting of four varieties: Sauvignon Blanc, Muscat Selection, Syrah and Shiraz-Tempranillo while watching the sun set behind the mountains.
Depending on your domestic flight, visit at your leisure the city of Nyaungshwe. Transfer to Heho for the flight to Yangon then return flight.
Today, Burma has become Myanmar. This wonderful country with many ethnic
Large colorful markets, enchantment of the Inle Lake and Bagan, Shwedagon pagoda
Let yourself be dazzled by this incredible country: its golden pagodas
From North to South, alternating between hikes and cultural visits brings a great diversity to