THE BEST OF MYANMAR ( PRIVATE TOUR )

  
visit asia - tours to asiaAn exciting tour where each day reveals the very best of this amazing country.

£2,995 per person.
Code MYB17D
FOR A DEPARTURE BETWEEN 20DEC AND 10JAN PLEASE ADD £195 PER PERSON.
Best time to go : Oct - Mar

YANGON - MANDALAY - PIN OO LWIN - MANDALAY - IRRAWADDY VOYAGES LUXURY CRUISE - BAGAN - HEHO - INLE LAKE - NGAPALI BEACH.

Luxurious hotels in each city/town, with a 2 night cruise on fullboard on the charming Irrawaddy Voyages.

Price includes : Visa for Myanmar, private a/c car with driver for all airport transfers and transfer from one place to the next, all internal flights including air passengers duty, hotels as specified with daily breakfast, 2 night cruise on fullboard basis on the Irrawaddy Voyages ( Main deck cabin ), admission fees, zone fees, long tail boat rides in Inle, horse/ox cart rides, mineral water during visits, airport porterage ( max 2 cases per person ).

Price excludes : International flights , main meals ( except the ones on cruise ) & drinks, optional sunrise balloon ride, tipping and any service not specified.

DAY 01 Departure
Departure from the UK.
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Day 2 YANGON (-/-/-)
On arrival at Yangon airport meeting with our representative and car transfer to the Savoy, a small charming boutique Hotel. Rest of the day is at leisure. Overnight in Yangon at the Savoy (Deluxe room).

DAY 03 YANGON CITY TOUR By Circle Train (B/-/-)
Leisurely breakfast at the hotel. Join your private car & guide for a city orientation tour of Yangon by train. Start an hour train ride experience at the Central Railway Station, where you will board a commuter train (basic conditions) slowly riding in circle around Yangon neighbourhood and on the outskirts of the city. Disembark in Insein , one of the city best fresh produce markets. Drive back to downtown and explore colonial-style city centre and Sule Pagoda. This Burmese stupa occupies the centre of the city and is an important place in contemporary Burmese politics, ideology and geography. According to legend, it was built before the Shwedagon Pagoda during the lifetime of the Buddha, making it more than 2,600 years old. The pagoda is listed as one of Yangon Heritage Site. Continue west towards the Mahabandoola Park featuring Myanmar's Independence Monument. From there you can see some grand colonial buildings, namely the City Hall, the Supreme Court, and the Baptist Church among the others. Next Pansodan Street will take you to the jetty, where you can observe Yangon daily life on a jetty market. Tens of thousands of people cross the Yangon river daily to work or sell their homemade goods in the city. Continue the walk along the river to discover more colonial buildings like the Custom House, The British Embassy, and the General Post Office among others.
Later in the afternoon visit Bogyoke Aung San Market. Formerly known as the Scott's market is known for its colonial architecture and inner cobblestone streets. The market is a major tourist destination dominated by antique, Burmese handicrafts, jewellery shops, art galleries, and clothing stores. It also has a number of stores for local shoppers, selling medicine, foodstuffs, garments and foreign goods. Just before sunset transfer to Shwedagon Pagoda known as Shwedagon Zedi Daw, a 99 metres (325ft) gilded pagoda and stupa, and the most important landmark of Myanmar. The pagoda lies to the west of Kandawgyi Lake, thus dominating the skyline of the city. It is the most sacred Buddhist pagoda for the Burmese with relics of the past four Buddhas enshrined within. Return to hotel for ovenight.

DAY 04 YANGON / MANDALAY – PYIN OO LWIN (B/-/-)
Early breakfast at the hotel (or) boxed breakfast to take away to airport. Fly to Mandalay. Upon arrival, embark on a scenic two hour drive to the former British hill station of Pyin Oo Lwin also known as Maymyo. The road winds steeply through flower, fruit and vegetable gardens. Enjoy a stroll in the National Kandawgyi Botanical Garden embracing 400 acres of natural forest, bamboo plantation, orchid farm, and recreational lawns. In the afternoon, excursion to Pwe Kauk Water Falls, a very enjoyable picnic spot about 5 miles away from the town. Return to Pyin Oo Lwin in late afternoon and ride through the town on a horse drawn stage coach. Overnight at The View Resort (Bungalow Suite).

DAY 05 PYIN OO LWIN – MANDALAY (B/L/-)
visit asia - tours to asiaAfter breakfast, a brief visit to colourful Maymyo market before a guided tour to one of the country’s premier coffee plantations, “Sithar Coffee Farm” founded in 1996 located on the hill town at 3,300 feet, ideal for coffee growing. Discover how coffee is grown and harvested and the process of milling coffee green beans. You are invited to strap on a basket and begin picking the dark red ripe beans. Enjoy a cup of coffee before lunch at Pan Taw Win restaurant. Afterwards, drive back to Mandalay (2 hours). Rest of the day is reserved for the visits to the highlights of Mandalay: Mahamuni Pagoda, the holiest pilgrimage site in Mandalay. The pagoda is famous for its venerable statue of Buddha which is believed to be cast in front of Buddha himself. Finally, ascend to the top of Mandalay Hill to enjoy a panoramic view of the city, the palace walls and Ayeyarwaddy River. Overnight at Rupar Mandalar Resort (Premier Suite).

DAY 06 MANDALAY – AVA – AMARAPURA - UBEIN BRIDGE (B/-/-)
After breakfast transfer to jetty to board a traditional wooden boat for a river crossing to Inwa (Ava) – an ancient imperial capital of successive Burmese Kingdoms from 14th to 19th Centuries. The most common mode of transport here in Inwa island is by horse cart. Places of interest are the Bagaya Monastery (made from teakwood and famous for its fine and exquisite carvings), Me Nu Oak Kyaung (brick monastery built in 1822), Thapyay Tan (an old fortress), alm bowls production workshop, and a few villages specializing in weaving and products from bamboo. To complete the visit, climb Nan Myint Watch Tower for a great view of Inwa. In the afternoon, return to Mandalay for more sightseeing : Shwenandaw Golden Palace Monastery with incredible woodcarvings; Atumashi Monastery originally built by King Mindon in 1857 as one of the biggest religious projects and Kuthodaw Pagoda featuring the 'World's Largest Book'. It contains 729 marble slabs with inscription of text from tipitaka (a set of Buddhist scriptures). At sunset drive to Amarapura for the 1,208 m long U-Bein Bridge that spans across beautiful Taung Thaman Lake. It is the world's longest wooden bridge. Overnight at Rupar Mandalar Resort (Premier Suite room).
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DAY 07 (SATURDAY) MANDALAY ~ BAGAN CRUISE on Irrawaddy Voyages ( MAIN DECK CABIN ) (B/L/D)
MANDALAY (GAWEIN) – MINGUN The embarkation time is 12.00 noon at Gawein jetty and cast off after half an hour time. Welcome Cocktail and briefing in the Saloon or Sundeck followed by Lunch. After cruising upstream for two hours we arrive at Mingun where we visit the impressive unfinished pagoda and the largest working bell in the world. Our English speaking manager (or your private guide) will accompany the guests during the visit. Moor Overnight at a sandbank mid-stream. After dinner guests can enjoy a Dance and Drama performance by the Mandalay Arts School on the sundeck (if available).

DAY 08 (SUNDAY ) On Board (B/L/D)
MINGUN – SAGAING –YANDABO Early in the morning cruise downstream. During the two hours journey the passengers can admire the natural beauty of the river and the life of its banks while relaxing on the sundeck or just sitting outside their own cabin. Enjoy the sunrise over Sagaing Hill. After breakfast passengers wishing to visit Sagaing can go ashore with the assistance of our Ship Manager or their own guide. We resume our downriver voyage at 10.30 hrs and we will sail all day long. Late afternoon we stop at Yandabo, a village specializing in Pot-Making, where the peace treaty of the First Anglo-Burmese war was signed on Feb. 24, 1826. We visit the Pot workshops, the monastery and the school. Moor overnight near the village of Shwe Nann Tint.
Important note: The visit to Yandabo is highly depending on the water level and river conditions. The ship Captain has the sole authority to decide whether to include that visit or not.

DAY 09 ( MONDAY ) BAGAN (B/-/-)
visit asia - tours to asiaCast off early in the morning for the last leg of our journey. Enjoy the sunrise near Bagan. Passengers will disembark at Ye Kin jetty around 9:00 hrs. Transfer to your hotel. Rest of the day is at leisure to take in the beauty of Bagan. Overnight at Thiripyitsaya Hotel (Deluxe river view room).

DAY 10 BAGAN (B/-/-)
Optional sunrise Balloon ride over Bagan. Breakfast at hotel followed by a Bagan tour with guide. Bagan sightseeing includes Nyaung U local market and a quick exploration of pagodas & temples: Kyansittar U Min & Ananda temple, Law-ka-nanda, Shwe-san-daw, the massive Dhamma-yan-gyi famous for its remarkable brickwork, Su-la-muni & other major temples of Shwezigon built by King Anawrahta in the early 11th century as a religious shrine. Next transfer to Myin-kaba village to observe several interesting crafts such as the making of traditional lacquerware, one of the best known Myanmar handicrafts and a specialty of Bagan, making hand rolled cheroot and Myanmar paintings. Visit the monuments of Myinkaba village, Gubyaukkhi, an early period Pyu-style temple of Hindu influence with some of the oldest mural paintings in Bagan, Manuha and Nanpaya temples. At sunset enjoy a ride on a beautifully decorated ox/horse cart. A magical & unforgettable experience! Overnight at Thiripyitsaya Hotel.

DAY 11 BAGAN / HEHO – INLE LAKE (B/-/-)
Transfer to airport for a mid morning flight to Heho. On arrival drive to Nyaung Shwe jetty and & boat transfer to Villa Inle in Inle lake. Inle sightseeings by boat include Phaung Daw Oo Pagoda, one of the famous principal shrines in Myanmar, this pagoda houses five small Buddha images. Once a year, in end of Sep or early Oct, there is a pagoda festival during which the Four Buddha images are rowed around the lake in a colourful Barge. Next visit to the old Nga Phe Monastery, fondly known as the jumping cats monastery before returning to your hotel cruising along an incredible labyrinth of floating vegetable gardens and farmer’s houses. Overnight at Villa Inle Resort ( Lake Front Villa ).
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DAY 12 INDEIN (B/-/-)
Full day lake excursion by longtail boat including the five-day market (subject to availability). The place is crowded with ethnic minorities in their colourful traditional dresses selling and buying local farm produce. Later continue by boat to Indein village, an impressive 16th Century temple site. The temples & palaces are still left in ruins but still brilliantly describe a lost civilization. On your lake tour stop to see silk weaving on wooden handlooms, a silverware workshop and also local blacksmith workshops and Burmese cigars making house. Overnight at Villa Inle Resort.
Alternatively a day trip to Sagar can be arranged. After breakfast, boat ride about 1 and half hrs to “Sagar”, the route to Sagar is a boat journey leaving Lake Inle southwards through the sometimes murky. There are a few ancient pagodas, which are simple but beautiful nonetheless. The valley is entirely given over to paddy cultivation and the slopes have long since been cleared of all large tree growth for hill crops. It is worth visiting the area on the market day when people from local tribes come together. Although a bit longer boat ride, the trip to Sagar is a beautiful one that passes a number of tribal villages and is a perfect day trip for the traveler wanting a relaxing day away from other tourists. Overnight at Villa Inle Resort.

DAY 13 INLE LAKE – HEHO / THANDWE – NGAPALI BEACH (B/-/-)
After breakfast, car transfer to Heho airport for flight to Thandwe. On arrival transfer to Ngapali Beach. 03 nights stay at the Ngapali Bay Villas & Spa (Seaview Villa with terrace). Each of the 16 seaview villas (54 m²) features an open air terrace among a lush tropical garden. The seaview villas are designed with an intimate floor plan, including a relaxed lounge seating area, walk through wardrobe as well as spectacular floor to ceiling windows for an ocean view across a perfectly manicured garden.
Optional upgrade to a Beach front villa, please enquire.

DAY 14+15: NGAPALI (B/-/-)
Days at leisure to enjoy Ngapali beach staying at the same hotel.

DAY 16 THANDWE/YANGON (B/-/-)
In due time car transfer to airport for a mid afternoon flight to Yangon. Connect with your flight home.

DAY 17 Arrive home