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Myanmar. Tribes, pristine beaches and treasures of Pagan kingdom

9 +2 to transfer

Tour description

Myanmar recently opened to the world after decades of military dictatorship. Let`s discover the most impressive authentic places before crowds of tourists arrive!

  • Meet the unforgettable sunrise among thousands of Buddhist stupas in Bagan, the capital of the ancient Pagan kingdom 
  • Visit the "long-necked" Karen women and watch unusual Inta fishermen on Inle lake
  • Walk to the top of the sacred hill near the world-famous town of Mandalay
  • Enjoy the pristine beaches of Ngapali without tourist industry and crowds of visitors
  • Watch Buddhist rituals at Shwezigon and Shwedagon stupas covered in pure gold

Tour departures

24 October 2024 - 01 November 2024

The price of the tour includes

Two domestic flights; Accommodation in double/twin rooms of tourist class hotels during the entire trip; Breakfasts in some hotels; All transportation including buses, boats, taxi; Professional guiding services.

What is NOT included

Flight to Mandalay and from Yangon back home. (Let us know if you need help finding the best deals); Visa to Myanmar ($50); Insurance (mandatory); Entry tickets to temples, parks and other attractions; Rent of motorbikes; Food.

Tour map

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Tour itinerary

Day 1

Mandalay, Royal palace, Mandalay hill

We arrive in Mandalay and check into a hotel in the city center. This is the mysterious city made famous by George Orwell and his Burmese Days novel and poems by Rudyard Kipling! We begin our group trip to Myanmar with a walk through the former royal capital with a visit to the royal palace. Surrounded by a river and moats, it was built recently - in the 19th century. The last king who lived here - Thibaw Min was overthrown by the British conquerors in 1885 and sent to exile in India. The palace was used by the new owners as a fortress, and now it has become a museum. 

After lunch we drive to the sacred hill of Mandalay Hill near the city. It is known for dozens of Buddhist monasteries, stupas and statues of Buddha. It is interesting that in the temples, next to the statues of Buddha, there are also statues of pagan deities. Yes, Buddhism in Myanmar got mixed with more ancient religions. 

Burmese people from all over the world come to the hill to make a ritual walk around each shrine, light incense and stick the finest gold plate as an offering. Locals look vivid - they wear traditional longyi sarongs and smear thanaka on their faces - a yellow paste from the bark of the tree of the same name that protects the skin from the tropical sun.

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Day 2

Ancient capital Mingun, Mingun-paya, The largest ringing bell in the world, Hsinbyume pagoda

In the morning we leave for the ancient capital Mingun near Mandalay. Here we will continue our guided tour to Myanmar. Mingun is known for one of the most beautiful stupas in the world, and certainly the most unusual in Myanmar - Mingun-paya. King Bodawpaya, an ardent Buddhist who dreamed of building the largest pagoda in the world, began to build it in the 18th century. This grandiose structure was supposed to be 150 meters tall! But court astrologers predicted that the king would die as soon as the stupa was completed. Therefore, Mingun-paya was never finished, and several earthquakes left deep cracks on its body. 

Fortunately, the grim prediction did not involve the Mingun bell - another project of King Bodawpaya. It weighs 90 tons and is recognized as the largest ringing bell in the world! We walk to another unusual pagoda - snow-white Hsinbyume. It looks more like a cloud on the banks of the river, especially if you see it against the background of Mingun-paya. Built by order of the grandson of Bodawpaya, King Bagyidaw, in honor of his wife who died in childbirth. This pagoda symbolizes the sacred mountain Meru - the center of all material and spiritual worlds in both Buddhism and Hinduism.

In the evening, we take a bus or train to Bagan (5 hours on the way) and check into the hotel.

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Day 3-4

Bagan, Shwezigon pagoda, Sunset and sunrise near ancient temples

Even people far from Asia have heard of the ancient Pagan kingdom. And our guided tour to Myanmar has taken us to its capital - Bagan! In the morning we leave the hotel and plunge into unhurried local life. We take a walk outside the city, where hundreds of Buddhist temples and stupas stretch out on endless fields. In ancient times, wealthy citizens of the kingdom built temples here to gain good karma. As a result, already in the 13th century there were thousands of them. Only one fifth has survived to our time. But to see all of it we need to rent electric mopeds. We drive along dirt paths, exploring temples along the way, and observe an incredibly beautiful sunset. Those who wish can fly to the sky in a hot air balloon to enjoy stunning views. 

In the morning we wake up before dawn to meet the first rays of the sun among Buddhist temples. We walk to the Shvezigon pagoda, covered with real gold. The capsule with a part of the Buddha’s body is laid in the foundation of this structure. Buddhist monks and lay people go around the stupa three times clockwise and perform other rituals. Very close to this abundance of gold lies a simple village. Locals live in traditional wooden houses, with buffaloes graze nearby, and keep chickens. What a contrast! We discover the local bazaar, taste delicious fresh sugarcane juice. In the evening we take a night bus to Inle Lake.

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Is this trip for you?

This trip is of light physical grade. It includes walks in towns and parks, two night trips in comfortable buses, and two short flights. We will also be riding boats. Accommodation in double/twin rooms of tourist class hotels, all will have hot water and wi fi internet.

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