Charmed with ancient red-brick and gilded temples, mesmerizing cruise trip along the Irrawaddy river as well as remarkable Inle's floating life, Myanmar makes itself a rising rendezvous for all trippers worldwide. We consistently keep your experience up-to-date as below:
Kalaw is not only well-known as a perfect trekking base, it also allures nature lovers with a breathtaking elephant sanctuary where you could enjoy a great deal of freedom with retired timber elephants, join them for their bath and plant your own tree to make a better home for these forest animals.
Proudly known as the orginal land of Mon people and culture, Bago is one of the richest archaeological sites in Myanmar in which ancient Myanmar culture and flourishing Buddhism are still main way of life. After 2 hours driving from Yangon, Bago countryside will soon impress our eyes with gorgeous Kyaik Pun pagoda form of four gigantic Buddha images placed back to back with each other; the tallest ever Shwemawdaw pagoda, the proudest and most important construction from Mon kingdom; KhaKhatWain Monastery to participate in beautiful almsgiving ceremony with 500 monks in the morning. Beside, a visit to a lively local market will provide you a brilliant chance to get closer to local life and commute with curious and cheerful Burmese.
Just more than 2-hour driving from the center of Yangon, there is a truly heaven for any nature enthusiast and specially bird lover named Moeyungyi Wetland Wildlife Sanctuary. Exploring a humble water body of Moeyungyi on a small boat, you are given an opportunity to commute with nature and appreciate over hundred of resident and migratory beautiful water birds in their indigenous habitat. Calm yourself in between relaxing sounds of birds, enjoy the peace and tranquility of absolute natural world surrounded.
Just about 60 km north from Yangon, for any nature and amimal lovers, dont miss a natural setting in Bago region called Winga Baw Elephant camp, also known as one of few important elephant orphanage of Myanmar. Here you could get some heartwarming experiences with friendly young elephants who used to live in different remote forests around the country. Beside watching elephant dancing show at 8:30 am, enjoy your time playing with these gentle giants or feeding them with milk, canes or corns before witnessing them in their natural habitat as the they roam over the nearby jungle. Be prepared for surprise as sometimes they could apprear out of no where after a while hiding away among the bushes. Just slow down and have your sense put in turn for nature and wild beloved friends.
Danu is a beautiful hillside village which offers unlikely trails for any trekking lovers through terrace- farm plantations where hill villagers cultivate oranges, damsons, potatoes, tea and various more. Along the way, you will be warmly welcomed by smiling villagers while passing scattered traditional houses. Trekking at your own pace and pause at anywhere you like to make random chat with locals and understand more their unique culture and daily activities.
Board in a luxury day cruise and start out an enjoyable river expedition in between Bagan and Mandalay. This 12-hour sailing will truly offer you an anticipation of fresh air, the opportunity to feel the gentle waves on the majestic Irrawaddy river while enjoying panoramic views of pristine nature and river life along the way. If you don’t want to be lazy on board, apart from the accommodation of ultra-comfortable seating in air-conditioned main deck or sunbathing chairs available on upper deck, a joyful class teaching different ways to wear Longyi (Myanmar traditional costume) and Thanaka (fragrant paste made from the bark of Thanatkha tree) will give you better insights of Myanmar’s beautiful culture. When the ship is about to reach Mandalay, take your time to enjoy gorgeous moment of the setting sun over the peaceful river.
Drive to the banks of the Irrawaddy River and board in a private wooden motorboat on Aye Yar Jetty for upriver sailing to Kyauk Gu U Min, a remote temple located in quieter side of Bagan. The unique beauty of the temple appreciated by floral designed entrance, exquisite stone carvings depicting religious figures, inner-wall Buddha statues and the notable feature of light wells. There is also a cave found at the back of the temple since it was built against the site of precipitous cliff near the bank of mighty Irrawaddy river. Learn of the legend story behind this temple cave which was largely believed to be a shelter from the invading Mongols. While travelling slowly along the river, take your chance to capture fabulous views of riverside villages, fishermen and local boats passing by.
Standing for “Free from Danger”, Yankin Hill is ideally peaceful destination for sunset view from the East of Mandalay. After 30 minutes driving from the city center, you could choose to continue driving up the hilltop or spending a further 30 minutes to climb up the top through steep stairway. From the hilltop, enjoy the panoramic view of Mandalay's rural landscapes and Shan foothills behind.
Catching a slow train from Kalaw to Inle Lake, it is the chance to to gether local feeling with a seat on outdated carriage dated back from colonial time. The train has long played such a vital role on daily life of Shan Hill locals as importantly affordable link connecting lands. Sitting near the opened windows, relax your mind and enjoy your hassle-free time observing the laid-back charm of naturally preserved Shan mountains, beautiful countryside and vibrant local life going by..
As a perfect relaxing interlude during your journey through Myanmar, a short river navigation with Paukan cruise will offer you an excellent chance to fully experience the authentic floating life along the Irrawaddy river with privileged visit to unusually beautiful villages off the regular tourist trails. After a long meaningful day full of sightseeing, it is your private time for relaxing in your well-equipped comfy cabin or calmly catching the sunset on sundeck with a cool tropical drink before having sumptuous dinner in a luxury attached restaurant served by dedicated attendants. After dinner, it is time to enjoy a traditional dance and drama performance by the Mandalay Arts School on the sundeck (if available).
Sailing upwards the mighty Irrawaddy river from Mandalay, Mingun unfinished pagoda will soon catch your eyes in with its massive compound setting near the riverbank. Get off the boat, we will take you to discover all secrets behind the largest pagoda in the country and probably in the world if finished, the overriding ambition of King Bodawpaya, the reason why it was eventually left abandoned, the great architecture from finest brick works and the largest working giant bell inside. If you wish, it is also possible to climb to the top of pagoda and have splendid views of surrounding landscape.
Over the cold stay on top mountain of Kyaikhtiyo, a soft trek meandering the lush jungle-covered mountain and its little villages will make your Golden Rock trip more highlighted and extensive. Grasp an excellent chance to capture and live up the simple nature beauty in perfect harmony with vibrant hill tribe culture in which authentic Mon people spend most of the time together farming, weaving and having fun in their unique thatched houses. Feel free to stop at anywhere for stunning pictures or random chat with any passing friendly villagers.
Known as one of the most sacred sites in devout Buddhist Myanmar, Golden Rock pagoda is rather outstanding and attractive for its special location and bizzare look with a giant golden rock precariously balancing on the edge of a cliff on the top of Kyaikhtiyo mountain. In order to visit the rock pagoda, you are to join a thrilling open truck ride up on the winding road through the forest mountain. Just like a special roller coaster trip, 45-minute driving up mountain will surely get you into the feeling of free and exhilarated before reaching the Golden rock and admire the breath-taking scene of the majestic gilded rock between the spectacular nature surrounding.
Irrawaddy river – proud as one of symbolic feature shaping the serene beauty of Myanmar. A journey up and down the mighty river will offer you wonderful experience to capture all precious moving images of maybe white oxen herd resting under palm trees’ shade somewhere in an isolated sleepy village, local people finding their life meaning in pagodas, or the big red sun falling down into the water while someone is catching fish under. Pandaw cruise is gingerly picked out to gather all travel enthusiasts for the meaningful journey by heart and soul from the best to least known beauty of Myanmar along Irrawaddy river. With dedicated crew, creative itinerary and knowledgeable guides, we hope everyday is a new amazing experience of you getting to know more local cuisines, different cultural nuances, unusual tourist tracks and cheerful residents.
Take a glimpse of the wonders and unique culture of ancient Bagan upon the very first day sightseeing. Joining the crew sightseeing with knowledgable guide, you will be lead to witnessing the dedicated process of making the Myanmar’s most qualified and beautiful lacquer handicrafts in a selected local workshop. In the follow up by a visit to series of outstandingly quaint ruined temples including Payathonezu, Dhamayangyi before cherishing peaceful sunset moment from the upper terrace of the remote but stunning Taung Guni temple.
Being known as one of the successful empire over Myanmar history, Bagan is like a miniature representing ancient prosperity and power of Burma with over 2,000 well-preserved stupas, pagodas and temple. Entering the land and visiting main attractions, exquisite and graceful architecture offerred by aging monuments along with interesting stories behind will amaze any passionate travellers. Afternoon trip to Bagan lacquerware house is another worthwhile stop to see how finest lacquerware products are made all by hands and get to know why Bagan is the famous centre of thriving lacquerware industry in Burma.
Throughout the long history of formation and development with numerous successive dynasties, none is found by now but their ancient once capital cities hold many interesting stories inside. Ava or Inwa is one of the most fascinating ones which hides its charm under the laid-back cover of rural setting and imprinted remains dated back to hundreds years ago. A horse-cart ride will bring you a back-in-time trip to discover forgotten beauty of glorious past. After a knowledgeable trip, enjoy your balmy afternoon on board by attending enjoyable cultural activities or just relaxing out with your favorite cocktail in the custom made swimming pool or windy sundeck.
A 3-night journey with The Strand actually starts with a Western breakfast in a private scenic area beside the Royal Lake in Mandalay. When making sure you are ready, we head for a first leisurely day trip with a short visit to U Bein bridge which is believed to be the oldest and longest teakwood bridge in the world; Mahamuni Pagoda, one of the most holiest Buddhist pilgrimage sites in Burma with original figure of Buddha wearing a royal costume in surprisingly thick layer of gold; Shwe In Bin – a gorgeously carved teak monastery where ancient fine art meets sense of peaceful ambience. After hearty lunch and nice break in your comfortable cabin, on local tuk-tuk, we team up to uncover the famous unfinished pagoda & giant bell in Mingun which symbolized the King Bodawpaya’s never fullied wish. Our knowledgeable guide will tell out all about the epic story behind the massive remain.
Irrawaddy river – proud as one of symbolic feature shaping the serene beauty of Myanmar. A journey ups and downs the mighty river will offer you wonderful experience to capture all precious moving images of maybe white oxen herd resting under palm trees’ shade somewhere in an isolated sleepy village, local people finding their life meaning in pagodas, or the big red sun falling down into the water while someone is catching fish under. The Strand cruise, which provides perfect combination between superb service quality and cultural highlights, is handpicked for you to make this all happen. Embark on the opulent ship, you will soon receive such a warm welcome from a soon-become-family crew and discover all the new amazing together.
Start your new day by an early morning soft trek to Kyeekanpasat (Mouth of Crow) and try rare local fruits along the way.On the way getting back to Yangon, surprisingly, which is not that long boring ride as enroute we will soon stop over at beautiful landscape of Bago - the splendid capital of Mon Kingdom in 15th century. You can enjoy the Bago sightseeings: the lively market colorfully filled with everything from fresh flowers, vegetables, clothes to sundries; the magnificent complex of Shwemawdaw pagoda - the highest golden pagoda in Myanmar and authentic life in Mon villages where Mon tribes are living their livelihood by weaving, rubber planting and farming.
Highlighted on the top of Mt. Kyaikhtiyo, Golden rock pagoda is well-known as one of the most sacred religious sites in Myanmar with the giant balancing rock perched on the edge of a mountain for over 2,500 years. ITo the intriped travellers and risk takers, the 30-min truck journey up the winding roads with lots of sharp turns to reach the pagoda will be such an unforgetbale experience not to be missed out. Listening to the story behind the magical rock while witnessing hundreds of devotees line up to light candles and paste golden leaves to the rock, you are to see how much this place means to locals as a way of life. Lately, warp up your special day watching the sun going down from the mountain top as the rock lights up magically.
Take part in an epic trek in Kalaw or there is no better ways to not only discover the amazing landscape but also get an insight into the real cultural life with our experienced trekking local guide, who is always open to any of your question on Burmese life.Situated on the eastern edge of Shan Plateau, Kalaw is a picturesque hilltown dotted with tribal villages - an ideal destination for adventurous spirits to grab a hold of beautiful nature settings as well as breathe the ethnic lives. Starting your trek from the centre of town after breakfast, you will gradually sneak your way up towards the elevated plains above Kalaw and target to indigenous Shan village of Pein Hne Pin. Every part in the trekking route is an amazing discovery of changing landscape that will blow you away when going through: mountain, valley, plantations, etc.
Situated high up above a nice village with small lake, Pindaya limestone caves are worthwhile a visit as a must sight to behold. Deep in the hillsides, looking like an ordinary temple from the outside, the caves contain over 8000 precious Buddhas statues of various styles and shapes making from plenty of materials such as alabaster, teak, marble, stone, bronze, lacquer, cement and gold. Finding your way through the maze and getting surprised by all the suddens that you can’t imagine until there. And soon, a feeling of calmness will take over your mind when you gaze upon the serene faces of the Buddhas. At the end of the amazing discovery and getting outside the cave, don’t miss out the exceptional opportunies to take the superb photos with a marvelous view over the scenic countryside surrounded.
Indein is a small village West of Inle Lake which is renowned for the floating market and impressive ancient stupas with Banyan trees growing out of them. From Inle Lake, by just a scenic 8-kilometer boat ride through a long narrow canal, you soon reach the lively floating ‘5-day market’ rotated every five days around five different villages in Inle. This is a beautiful opportunity to experience the diversity of Inle ethnic, witness their day-to-day life and make their unique fair on the water trading all local products. A drop-in visit to local workshops will excite your curiosity about lotus weaving, cheroot cigarettes making in various size and flavours and diligent hand crafted silver work. Lastly, don’t forget to discover old ruined pagodas dated back to the 13th century and admire their incredible beauty even in bad condition. The impressive image of stupas after stupas decaying due to constant exposure to humidity still pose irresistible charm will leave you with nothing but thrills.
Located only 07 km far from Inle Lake, Red Mountain Vineyard is absolutly worth a visit, especially in the afternoon. Getting to this lovely attraction, you could learn how decent wine is made from locally grown grapes in Burma. Moreover, at the end of your trip, sitting around the winery’s terace and watching the fantastic sunset over Inle Lake with wine in hand would be a rewarding treatment to soften your worry and busy thought in daily life
Apart from the boat trip, there is no better way than a thrilling bicycle tour to experience Inle Lake and hidden surroundings from another angle. A stop at Intha village Kaung Daing and soaking time in hot spring or discovering the local food processing work: manufacture peanut oil, whip up mango fruit leather, and dry sunflower seeds & fermented yellow pea tofu definitly makes for your sublime morning schedule.Pedalling off the main road, heading your way into village, you will be blown away when observing the farmers' working in paddy field in harmorny with spectacular mountainous background.Don't hesitate to make friends with bubbly locals chatting and laughing on their doorsteps or the innocent kids, they always timidly smile a lot to have you there.
Upward the western of Shan state is the pictureque Inle Lake – the Venice of Myanmar. Stepping off Nyaung Shwe marina, you will take a motorized boat to navigate through stilt villages, floating garderns and meet locals who spend their entire lives on the water. Passing Ywa Ma village and Kay Lar Village where Intha people built their unique houses with long straight wooden poles stretching into the lake bed, it is your tranquil time in relaxed atmostphere of thelocally significant Phaung Daw Oo Pagoda and get to unfold the interesting story of the five Buddhas inside. As the dawn is coming and the warm light turns the still surface of the lake a golden colour, just pause for a while and cherish true value of unforgetable moment.
Welcome to the largest state of Myanmar - Shan State, which is named after the majority ethnic group of Shan people. For first -time visitors, don’t miss the chance to check out a local workhop in Pindaya where skillful locals made many things by hand, including the glorious Burmese parasol (a traditional umbrella made from bamboo and Shan paper). You can get close, chat and learn the manufaturing process that locals put all their hearts and souls into, and get some impressive ones back home as your Myanmar vacation memory. Continuing the trip, we will visit Shwe Yan Pyay Monastery - an old architecture made entirely from wood highlighted by unique oval-shape windows. When all the wood and the sunlight sneaking through the gaps blend into one scene, it is time to turn on camera and snap the best photo of the day.
Welcome to Mandalay – the city of culture located in the right heart of Myanmar. Unlike other lively tours in modern cities, your excursion in Mandalay will take you to the outlying areas with fantastic mixture of nature and culture: Riverside hills dotted by gold stupas and pagodas named Sagaing, incredible view over Manday across Ayeyarwaddy River from the hill top, brilliant U Min Thonze Cave Temple and Soon U Ponya Shin Pagoda, amazing golden Buddha statue at Mahamuni Buddha Temple. Moreover, a stop at Mahagandayon Monastery is truly worth your time in Mandalay, impressing you by the calm atmosphere when humble monks in red robes lining up silently for lunch ceremony. After all, a stunning sunset over the iconic U Bein Bridge will definitly blow you away after a long day tour.
Surrounded by dozens of monasteries and pagodas, Mandalay is described for a long time as the city of arts, architecture and significant charms in Myanmar. The further you go, the more likely you are to fall in love with this land. Passing the 40km-long way by car and boat to Pahtodawgyi Pagoda, your mind will soon be filled with all surprise and excitement when visiting Mingun Temple with the giganic Mingun Bell (you can gong it for some luck). On the way back from the charming pagoda, it is time for a peaceful walk exploring Mandalay Palace where the last King lived in and the nearby finely carved teak wooden Shwenandaw Monastery, followed by a visit the local workshop and learn how fine and thin gold leaves are made then plastered on to temples and Buddha statues. Let’s save the best for last by getting lost in the white field of 729 shrines lining up straightly before enjoying tranquil sunset from the top of Mandalay Hills and looking back all the places you passed along the busy but wonderful day.
Minanthu village, to the east of Bagan, is the place which gives you an excellent insight into the traditional daily life of local people. Taking a walk in the village and you will see people in their daily work: collecting water from well, harvesting sesame seeds, weaving cloth, spinning cotton, making cheroot & silver jewelry, etc. Don't hesitate to say "Mingalabar" (which means "Hello" in Burmese) and the friendly villagers will always be very happy to share you their ways of living through inside stories. It is also nice to visit the nearby temple Lay Myat Hnar monastic complex. The shining white exterior with old paintings coverring interior walls will surely leave you a great lasting impression.
Bagan - among the most significant archaeological South East Asia sites is one of the densest concentrations of temples and pagodas with about 2,000 monuments remain in various states of repair. Once arriving in Bagan, grasp a terrific chance to see how local life is going through in Nyaung U market: the atmosphere in a Burmese market, regional products, fresh veggies, fine rice, unique local suncreen, etc. Continue the visit to important Buddhist constructions of Bagan: Shwezigon pagoda - the huge gold plated pagoda which is believed to enshrine a bone and tooth of Gautama Buddha, Ananda temple - a gorgeous white temple with coppery golden top - the finest and most beautiful temple in Bagan. Moreover, the further exploration in the legendary Gubyaukgyi, Htilominlo and Sulamani Temples will truly be a step back in time between historical architecture, old murals, plaster carvings and glazed sandstone decorations. After a long day, soothe your soul in peace and enjoy the sunset along the Ayarwaddy River.
Mt Popa - a solitary peak topped by gold stupas, is well-known as the birth place of Myanmar’s ‘nats’ or spirits. (50 kilometers southeast from central Bagan ~ 1.5 hours to get there by car). To reach the top, you need to remove shoes and socks and climb the 777 steps to the shrine at the top of the peak. Along the way, there are a multitude of cunning monkeys expecting treats. Sometimes these mischivous hosts can get a little aggressive so it's recommended to take well care of your possessions. Enjoy your reward once conquering the climb with with stupas glistening gold and nothing-can-beat views from the top.
Welcome to Yangon - the biggest and most bustling city in Myanmar, a unique city in Southeast Asia with all nostalgic colors of time and culture reserved over centuries. If you are interested in colonial era architecture, a stroll down Yangon's colonial buildings will definitely blow you away by well-reserved images from the 20th century, with decaying facades filled with old paint and small trees squeezing through those little cracks. Moreover, proud of rich cultural tradition, Yangon will amaze you with plenty of spiritual relics where you can experience the importance of Buddhism to the Burmese’s lives: tranquil Chaukhtatgyi Temple containing an over-200-feet-long reclining Buddha, the octagonal-shaped 2500 year old pagoda Sule Pagoda located in the heart of the city, and especially the legendary Shwedagon Pagoda - the massive 99 meter high gold plated pagoda with the diamond studded spire on top of a small hill in downtown Yangon. And don’t miss chance to meditate in pagoda’s mystical atmosphere beautifully lit up after dark.(Note: Selected schedules will be appropriately handpicked according to specific package)