15 days / 14 nights
Tour Guide: English speaking
Yangon | Bagan | Pyin Oo Lwin | Gokteik Viaduct | Hsipaw | Mandalay | Pindaya | Kalaw | Inle Lake
Bagan, Inle Lake, Mandalay, Yangon
This fifteen days in-depth circuit covers many bases in our Golden Land. As well as famous sights and spots like Bagan, Mandalay and Inle Lake, the journey takes in lesser-known highlights such as the hill retreats of Hsipaw, Kalaw and Pyin Oo Lwin.
- Yangon, formerly known as Rangoon, may not longer be the Burmese capital, but it continues to be the hub of economic activity, a hive of intellectual debate and the main gateway for international visitors. The stunning Shwedagon Pagoda is the centrepiece of the city, a gleaming golden stupa visible from all over town. Closer to the waterfront, downtown Yangon is a warren of historic streets concealing some of the best British colonial-era architecture in the region. This is the real deal, and a walk along the Strand or Pansodan Street is like a stroll back in time. One surprise on arrival here is the complete lack of motorbikes, as they are banned from the streets of Yangon. Vibrant and dynamic, sweaty and steamy Yangon is reaching for the future while trapped in the past.
- Bagan, one of the most remarkable sights in South East Asia, has inspired visitors to Myanmar for nearly 1,000 years. The kingdom of Bagan has exited since the 8th century, but only rose to glory as capital of the First Kingdom of Myanmar in the early 11th century. Ancient chronicles state that there were once 4,446 temples over its wide plains but today only 2,230 remain, as recorded by UNESCO in 1998.
- Pyin Oo Lwin is an anglicized town, established once by the British as a luxury destination for rich and famous people. Located 1,000 meter above sea level it is a retreat from the mainland’s high temperature. Having served once as an important Educational center for English Government high schools, colonial style houses with large compound and pine trees remain in the town. The well maintained and beautifully decorated Botanical Garden is the jewel of the city.
- Gotheik Viaduct is the second highest in the world, being part of one of the most amazing train rides in Asia. Located 55 km north east of Pyin Oo Lwin, the viaduct was built by the Pennsylvania Steel Co. in 1903 on behalf of the British, being the oldest and longest railway bridge in Myanmar. The thrilling experience begins when the train slows down and approaches to the 300 meter deep Gokteik Gorge, offering an spectacular view into the thickly covered ravine. Along the route, visitors can also explore the nature of villages, farms and stunning mountain sceneries.
- Hsipaw, famously known for its powerful rulers (Saopwas), is locatled 200 km north east of Mandalay, and it was once the royal capital of the Shan State. Home to numerous Shan inhabitants, the town has quite a diverse cultural stretches. This beautiful, peaceful and charming town coupled with the combo advantage of nature and weather is the perfect place for trekking and walking to its surrounding hills. Exploring the treasure of colorful morning markets and the long standing and fascinating Shan Saopwa’s palace are certainly the twisting features of the town.
- Mandalay still evokes images of a romantic bygone era. The royal palace and its impressive moat sit at the foot of the imposing Mandalay Hill. Positioned on the banks of the Ayeyarwaddy River, Mandalay is the principal cultural and economic city of Upper Myanmar. It lies within easy striking distance of former colonial hill stations, ancient cities and other cultural attractions.
- Pindaya is famous for its extensive limestone caves, set deep in the hillsides, where visitors will be amazed to explore the incredible amount of Buddha statues and stalagmites. Famous also for its local handicrafts, Shan paper and parasols made from mulberry bark are popular products.
- Green Hill Valley Elephant Camp is located in the gorgeous Shan State, a mystical tapestry of lush jungle landscapes, rushing rivers and intriguing indigenous culture. Elephants have not had it easy in Myanmar, and Green Hill Valley gives the majestic beasts a purpose after their prime years. An awe-inspiring window into the gentle nature of these incredible animals.
- Inle Lake is a magical watery world of floating gardens, stilted villages and crumbling stupas, and one of Myanmar’s most alluring attractions. Mountains tumble down towards the lakeshore, blurring the distinction between heaven and earth. For many visitors, Inle is heaven on earth, a place to while away the days canoeing, cycling and walking through the lush countryside. The Intha people are famous for their leg rowing.