Maximize your time in Myanmar by taking an overnight flight.
A warm welcome awaits you at the garden city of Yangon – the gateway to a world of religious temples and ancient customs.
Today, you explore Yangon, a city where cool contemporary architecture mixes effortlessly with its colonial past. A stroll down the tree-lined boulevards will lead you to a world of pagodas, tropical gardens and bustling markets. Known as the “Queen of the East”, Yangon is not only Myanmar’s largest city but its artistic and commercial hub. If you fancy taking a glimpse into your future there will be a chance to meet an astrologer during a visit to the ancient Sule Pagoda.
Enjoy a day of rest and relaxation. After a leisurely lie-in and long breakfast, keep cool with a stroll under the shade of the tropical trees in one of Yangon’s many parks. A walk down Pansodan Street is a must if you’re keen to see more of the colonial-style architecture in the shape of the Post Office and High Court. Seek out one of the charming tea shops for the perfect pick-me-up before returning to the hotel.
All that glitters is gold when you step into Shwedagon Pagoda and find yourself swept away into a world of mythical beasts and serene Buddhas. Your flight into the magical land of Bagan will pass over the flat plains which are dotted with more than 2,000 temples. This is a day rich in Myanmar’s artistic and cultural heritage. You will see why the gold and diamond-encrusted Shwedagon Pagoda is the most sacred Buddhist temple in Myanmar. Dress casually, as you will get a chance to roll your sleeves up and have a go at the ancient craft of lacquerware.
Enjoy a relaxing breakfast, before absorbing more of the culture Bagan has to offer. Today, is the ideal time to venture into the vibrant markets and browse the stalls for Burmese jade and traditional handicrafts.
Today, you leave the city behind as you trek through the limestone foothills of Pindaya’s Shan Mountains – regarded as the gateway to Myanmar’s natural wonders. A night at Yasakyi Monastery, in the shadow of Mount Yasakyi, is the unique destination that awaits you. During your two-day trek you’ll see farmers tending to their tea, cheerot, damson and mango crops as you traverse your way through the lush fields. As special guests of the hospitable Danu tribe, you’ll enjoy lunch with a local family and learn about the customs of village life before setting off on the climb towards Yasakyi.
After breakfast you head off on a short trek through a hillside rich with peanut, corn and potato crops towards the local villages of the Danu tribe including Lin Lay Inn. Weave up and down the hillside between the Banyan trees and tea plantations as you head towards Taung Paw Gyi and watch how the leaves are dried in the sun. Pindaya’s jewel in the crown awaits as you get your first glimpse of Inle Lake and take a boat ride to the hotel.
Shimmering in the heart of the Shan plateau is Inle Lake resplendent with its floating gardens and stilted buildings. Today, you will learn how the lake is the lifeblood for the people who live here. Vegetables picked from the floating gardens will be one of the main ingredients when you take part in a Shan-style cookery class. You will travel by canoe to a stilted house, rarely visited by outsiders, for this unique culinary experience. Learn the secrets of the Shan cuisine and have a go at cooking some traditional dishes which you can try at home.
Today, is a chance to view the beautiful lake from a different perspective. Hop on a bike for a chance to get up close and personal with the buzz of local life. Your scenic route will lead you to the Indein pagoda, a cluster of ancient stupas, along with the lake’s stunning bridge, forest retreat and monastries. Cool down with a glass of wine from the Red Mountain Estate vineyard and enjoy the view of Inle Lake after a morning in the saddle. You return to the lake at the end of your five-hour ride for a relaxing journey back to the hotel.
A short boat ride to Sagar will give you the chance to watch the fisherman, known as Inthas, in their distinctive leg-rowing boats. During the journey take time to gaze across at the Shan Hills and look out for one of Myanmar’s rarest birds, the Collared Myna, as it lives among the floating gardens and stilted village of the lake. On arrival at the hidden village of Sagar, you will explore the sunken stupas and ancient temples. A rare chance to meet women from the Padaung tribe, distinguished by their gold neck coils, is a fitting way to round off your day of discovery.
Home to the Padaung, known as the long-neck tribe, Loikaw is where you find one Myanmar’s most dramatic pagodas. Today, you explore the glistening gold and white Taung Kwae Pagoda. This majestic temple sits on the Mingalar Thiri Mountain, dramatically jutting out of the limestone outcrop. As you browse the bustling markets keep an eye open for the proud Kayinni tribe distinguished by their bright crimson shawls and head wraps. The eclectic mix of tribal people and pagodas captures essence of Myanmar and all its wonders.
Bid a fond farewell to Myanmar – you’re off the airport today.