The Best of Burmese Culture

Myanmar (Burma) is a country that has begun to emerge as the next top travel destination in South East Asia. With its rich history, traditional culture, hospitable people and amazing scenery, now is the perfect time to embrace the opportunity and visit Myanmar.

This itinerary will give you the opportunity to explore Myanmar’s rich cultural heritage, as well as giving you a perspective on the Myanmar of today. The capital city of Yangon will be your jump off point to the rest of the country and your doorway into an unforgettable cultural experience. Experience the ancient city of Bagan, ride an elephant through the jungle, meander through local markets, and take a ride on the beautiful Inle Lake. The options for travel in Myanmar are seemingly endless and you are sure to leave with an amazing impression of this untouched and unspoiled country.

Day 1: Arrival to Yangon

Arrive in Yangon, formerly known as Rangoon, a relatively quiet and charming city in the South of Myanmar. Its impressive colonial and spiritual heritage makes it one of the most fascinating cities in Southeast Asia. While in Yangon you will stay at The Governor’s Residence, a charming mansion nestled within lotus gardens.

Stay: Belmond The Governor's Residence

Day 2: Yangon

Today you will have the opportunity to discover some of the most popular sights and sounds in Yangon. Visit the Shwedagon Pagoda, one of Myanmar’s most holy sites, to gain an insight into the traditional Buddhist culture of the local people. The surrounding area has many interesting markets, tea shops, alleys and temples for you to explore. In the afternoon you will continue with a spiritual-focused walking tour. Exploring the diverse religions in downtown Yangon provides insight into the rich cultural tapestry of Myanmar and unveils a side of the city rarely explored by tourists. Retire back to The Governor’s Residence for a refreshing gin and tonic in the charming colonial-styled bar.

Stay: Belmond The Governor's Residence

Day 3: Yangon – Heho – Kalaw

Take a quick ferry ride to Dhala to have a firsthand experience with the local village life, including a visit to the monastery, market, and community center, where you can experience the hospitable nature of the local people. In the afternoon, you’ll be catching a flight to Heho, in the heart of the Shan State. Upon arrival in Heho, embark on the scenic drive to Kalaw, a former British hill station. The evening in Kalaw can be spent taking a short stroll through town before the sun sets.

Stay: Amara Mountain Resort

Day 4: Kalaw - Elephant Camp – Nyaung Shwe

This morning you will transfer by car to the trekking start point between Pine Ne Bin and Taung Ny. Spend the morning trekking through the Shan Hills, passing through farms, forests and villages inhabited by the Pa-O and Palaung people. Continuing on foot in the afternoon you will soon reach the Green Hill Valley Elephant Camp where you can go for a scenic ride through the forest on top of one of these majestic animals. Relax at the main camp with a refreshing drink and enjoy the spectacular views before heading back to Kalaw and on to Nyaung Shwe.

Stay: Amara Mountain Resort

Day 5: Nyaung Shwe – Inle Lake - Nyaung Shwe

Take this day to explore the many fascinating sites around Nyaung Shwe with a walking tour of the canal, stilted villages, Nga Hpe Monastery and the Phaung Daw Oo Pagoda on Inle Lake. Each site is unique in its own way and the lakeside lifestyle of the local Intha people is sure to inspire and fascinate any visitor.

In the afternoon, proceed to a traditional Inthar House at Tharlay Village where you will spend time preparing a variety of dishes with the family. It’s a unique chance to spend time with the locals and learn about their cuisine and culture. Together you’ll prepare local delights including Inle Style Tomato Salad and other Inthar dishes. Return to Nyaung Shwe in the late afternoon and transfer to Red Mountain Wine Estate for a sunset wine tasting.

Stay: Amara Mountain Resort

Day 6: Nyaung Shwe – Sagar – Nyaung Shwe

Set off this morning for Sagar, the far southern region of Inle Lake. This region is one of the most beautiful places in the Shan State with the mountains forming a backdrop for the small villages and fishermen on the water. One of the main highlights for travelers is the ‘sunken’ stupas of Sagar- 108 stupas from the 16-17th centuries that are partially underwater for a few months a year. There is also a local monastery and village that can be visited here. Tonight you will stay at the charming Inle Princess Resort.

Stay: Inle Princess Resort

Day 7: Nyaung Shwe – Heho

Today you will take a short domestic flight to Bagan. From the 11th to 13th centuries, when Bagan was the capital of Myanmar, the rulers constructed thousands of huge stupas and temples many of which are still standing today on the banks of the Irrawaddy River. Stop and enjoy an unforgettable sunset over the plains from the upper terrace of one of the temples. After the sunset, you can head to your hotel for check in.

Stay: Aureum Palace Hotel

Day 8: Bagan

Home to over 3000 temples, a stop in Bagan is unquestionably a must while in Burma. Throughout the day, you will have the opportunity to explore the grandeur and scope of Bandan’s architecture, while marveling at the beautiful mural paintings and well-preserved plaster carvings.

Board a private river boat and set off upriver toward Kyauk Gu U Min. Throughout your Irrawaddy river cruise, you will be treated to fabulous scenes of life on the water: fishermen, local ferry boats, riverside villages and views of the Bagan temples.

Stay: Aureum Palace Hotel

Day 9: Bagan to Yangon

Visit the Nyaung U market, a busy morning market where locals gather from surrounding villages to buy and sell produce, crafts, spices and other goods. By visiting the workshops of local artisans, you will see how the region’s best known products, such as plum jam, handmade lacquer and wooden handicrafts are made.

In the afternoon you will board a flight and return to Yangon. Upon reaching Yangon, drop off your bags at the hotel and head out for a final night dinner in Myanmar. Yangon has something to offer for everyone- we recommend heading down to Chinatown for beers and barbeque if you want one last dose of local culture or head to one of the many international restaurants for a great dinner.

Stay: Belmond The Governor's Residence

Day 10: Departure

Transfer this morning to the Yangon airport for your international flight.

Itinerary

Duration Description Overnight
Day 1: Arrival to Yangon Belmond The Governor's Residence
Day 2: Yangon Belmond The Governor's Residence
Day 3: Yangon – Heho – Kalaw Amara Mountain Resort
Day 4: Kalaw - Elephant Camp – Nyaung Shwe Amara Mountain Resort
Day 5: Nyaung Shwe – Inle Lake - Nyaung Shwe Amara Mountain Resort
Day 6: Nyaung Shwe – Sagar – Nyaung Shwe Inle Princess Resort
Day 7: Nyaung Shwe – Heho Aureum Palace Hotel
Day 8: Bagan Aureum Palace Hotel
Day 9: Bagan to Yangon Belmond The Governor's Residence
Day 10: Departure

Inclusions

Included

  • Accommodation with daily breakfast
  • All transfers and transport
  • English speaking guides
  • All entrance fees on tour
  • Domestic airfaires
  • 24 hour emergency contact

Not Included

  • International airfaire
  • All drinks
  • Visa and airport taxes
  • Personal expenses
  • Tips and gratuities
  • Travel insurance (please note that travel insurance is mandatory for all Lightfoot Travel holidays

Map

2. Kalaw 3. Kwaung Shwe 4. Bagan

From USD 3,045 per person based on two guests travelling

Notes on our prices

  • This price guide provides you with a broad indication of how much to budget for your holiday.
  • Prices are generally based on two people travelling together (unless stated otherwise) on a shared room basis.
  • Prices can fluctuate depending on season, standard of accommodation, excursions selected (private versus shared) etc.
  • This basic structure works very nicely, but don’t forget that Lightfoot Travel can provide a range of experiences and we tailor-make each itinerary based on your travel requirements. Get in touch to start planning your perfect trip with your own travel consultant