Nowhere else in the region do man made relics mix so evocatively with nature as on the plains of Bagan. The sheer variety of temples, many of which were built in the 12th century, will overwhelm but perhaps the most exotic is Dhammayangyi, dating back to 1167, with its elegant gold-topped stupa and breathtaking mountain backdrop. More you can see yourself.
Day 1: Arrival - Yangon. Upon arrival at Yangon airport welcome by local guide and transferred to your hotel. Your journey begins with an afternoon tour through Yangon’s colonial-style city center. Visit Sule Pagoda, dating back over 2,000 years ago; the magnificent reclining Buddha at Chauk Htat Gyi; and after a photo stop at the Karaweik Hall, a 'hamsa-bird-shaped' floating barge on Kandawgyi Royal Lake, stroll through the Bogyoke, The Scotts Market with hundreds of food, clothes, handicrafts and gems stores. Complete your first day in Myanmar with an extended visit to one of the world’s most spectacular monuments, the Shedagon Pagoda. Overnight in Yangon.
Day 2: Yangon – Bagan. After breakfast you will be transferred to the airport for domestic flight to Bagan. After a stroll through the colorful local market continue the day with visits to the most significant pagodas and temples of Bagan including Shwezigon Pagoda, built by King Anawrahta in the early 11th century as a religious shrine; Ku Byanuk Gyi, a temple with superb murals of Jataka scenes; Khay Min Ga Temple, noted for its panoramic view of the area’s numerous monuments and Ananda Temple, with four standing Buddha images. After relax, visit one of Myanmar’s most treasured handicrafts, a lacquer ware craftsmen’s workshop in nearby Myinkaba village. You will continue to Manuha Temple, built in the Mon-style in 1059 and follow on to Nanbaya Temple, a unique sandstone monument said to have been the palace of King Manuha. Next you will explore the Myingaba Gu Byauk Gyi Temple, a temple noteworthy for its mural paintings under the protection of UNESCO. The Archaeological Museum is also visited to view the beautiful Buddha images of bronze, stone and lacquer. Proceed to Bupaya Pagoda or Mingala Zedi Stupa to watch the sunset over the famous Ayeyarwaddy River. Overnight in Bagan. Includes: (B)
Day 3: Bagan – Mandalay – Minggun. After breakfast you will be transferred to the airport for domestic flight to Mandalay. Upon arrival at Mandalay airport, proceed for a boat trip on the Ayeyarwaddy River to Minggun, about 11 km (1 hour) upriver from Mandalay, with visits to the Mingun Bell, weighing 90 tons and claimed as the largest uncracked bell in the world; Hsinbyume Paya and the unfinished Mingun Paya, built as the world's largest Chedi by King Bodaw Paya. Return to Mandalay and check-in at your hotel. After a short relax, we experience the sights and sounds of Mandalay including one of the most revered religious monuments in Myanmar, the Mahamuni Pagoda; the Shwe Inbin Monastery; the Golden Palace Monastery, a superb example of a traditional wooden building and Kuthodaw Pagoda the world’s largest book, made of marble. Mandalay is also a major crafts center. Visit a Kalaga tapestries craftsmen’s shop before proceeding to Mandalay Hill for sunset. Overnight in Mandalay. Includes: (B)
Day 4: Amarapura - Ava – Sagaing. After breakfast, excursion to Amarapura, 15 km from Mandalay. Visit Mahagandayon, a famous Buddhist monastery, where more than a thousand monks live and study; continue to 200-year-old Ubein teak bridge, built in 1782 at the time when Amarapura was Royal capital. Since then it is noted for silk and cotton weaving. Visit a traditional hand-woven silk workshop. Visit Bagaya Monastery, with a superb collection of Buddha statues. Then, excursion to the former Royal Capital of Inwa (Ava), reached by a short boat trip. Visits by horse-drawn carriage to Nanmyint Watch Tower, the remains of the palace building nicknamed “the leaning tower of Ava“; Maha Aungmye Bonzan Monastery, built of brick and stucco; Baragaya Mmonastery, famous for its impressive ornate woodcarvings and teak posts. Continue to Sagaing Hills, a retreat for Buddhist devotees for sunset. Overnight in Mandalay. Includes: (B)
Day 5: Mandalay – Pindaya – Inle Lake. After breakfast, transfer to airport for domestic flight to Heho. Upon arrival, proceed by road to Pindaya (65 km – 1 1/2 hour) and visit Pindaya Caves, a unique site housing thousands of Buddha images placed there by pilgrims over the centuries. From there, we drive to Nyaung Shwe (95 km – 2 1/2 hours) and transfer to your hotel. Dinner and overnight stay at Paradise Inle Resort (** built on stilts over the Inle Lake) or similar.
Day 6: Inle Lake. After breakfast, a full day excursion by boat on Inle Lake will include sights of the famous leg rowers, typical floating gardens, local methods of fishing, village life and magnificent scenery. Then Visits are made to Phaungdaw Oo Pagoda; the weaving village of Inpawkhon and to one of the local markets in the Inle Lake region (on market days only). In the afternoon, depending on the water level, board a boat to the Western Shore of Inle Lake, where you will find the beginning of a stair path leading to the hidden Iin Thein Pagoda complex. Overnight in Inle Lake. Includes: (B)
Day 7: Inle Lake – Heho – Yagon. After breakfast, you will be transferred to Heho Airport (25km – 1 hour) for domestic flight to Yangon. Upon rival, the rest of the day is at your leisure for relaxing, shopping or own sightseeing until the departure transfer to the airport. Includes: (B)
Also see tour packages in:
Asia Myanmar History Whiz Archeology/History Cultural Journey