Day 1 Departure from London.
Day 2 Morning arrival in Yangon, (Rangoon), via Bangkok and check-in to a comfortable, downtown hotel close to the famous Scott Market. Afternoon at leisure; check out some more of the City’s decaying Victorian splendor, the National Museum or perhaps revisit the awesome Shwedagon Pagoda?
Day 3 Morning departure by local train for the ancient Mon capital of Pegu, now Bago. From here we’ll continue to Kyaiktiyo and the foot of the mountains and the departure point for our Golden Rock visit. Yes the gold leaf covered boulder balanced precariously on a mountain top is spectacular for 5 minutes or so but it’s the whole experience that’s so wonderful: a ride half way up the mountain on an open topped truck crammed with locals, a climb with the pilgrims the rest of the way, the truly awesome views and overnight in a ridge-top hotel almost as absurdly situated as the rock itself. You’ll probably curse, scream, sweat, laugh, meet plenty of people and you certainly won’t forget it!
Day 4 Down the mountain and off south to Moulmein, now Mawlamlyine, contemporary capital of Mon State. Formerly home for several years to George Orwell and immortalized by Kipling, we reckon it's one of the country’s friendliest and most scenic towns. We’ll visit the lively fruit and vegetable market before heading up for sunset at one of the hill-top pagodas overlooking the town and estuary.
Day 5 We’ll begin with a visit to the town’s lively morning market before heading south to visit some of the region’s attractions: Kyauktalon Taung Pagoda perched Mount Popa style atop a sheer limestone outcrop, the incredible sight of the world’s largest reclining Buddha - Win Sein Taw Ya, a stop at Thanbyuzaya which was the terminus of the infamous WW2 ‘Death Railway’ from Kanchanaburi, where you can still see the old Japanese train plus the cemetery for the Allied POWs who lost their lives building the railway and last but not least the iconic Kyaikkami Monastery situated on a rock outcrop jutting into the sea. The temple’s located in the old colonial period town of Amherst where we can stroll along the beach before our return drive to Moulmein.
Day 6 Off by local boat for a day trip to nearby Bilu Kyun, (‘Ogre Island’!), where we’ll visit the very traditional Mon villages and discover some of the Island’s local handicrafts. They don’t see many tourists yet but the villagers will be happy to show you how they make cane walking sticks, the typical Burmese style bamboo hats, slate blackboards and even back garden rubber band making! (Sounds odd but it is absolutely fascinating!) Afternoon return to Moulmein for perhaps some sundowners at a waterfront café?
Day 7 Early morning departure by boat again for a journey up the scenic Salween River to Hpa-An Town – capital of Karen State. We’ll stop at a couple of riverside fishing villages on the way with time in the afternoon to explore the bustling and friendly town itself before a sunset visit to a riverside pagoda.
Day 8 Hpa-An is surrounded by dramatic limestone ‘karst’ scenery including the sacred Zwegabin Mountain – symbol of Karen State – and we’ll spend the day exploring the area’s caves, tunnels, temples and mountains by road, boat and on foot, as well as visiting some of the area’s traditional Karen villages.
Day 9 Return drive through rubber plantations and past more limestone crags to Rangoon with a stop on the way to visit the prestigious Zhotoke Pagoda and the ancient carvings of the ruins of the early Mon city of Savarnaphum. Late lunch and afternoon at leisure in Rangoon.
Day 10 Morning departure via Bangkok and evening arrival in London.
Note: This tour is offered with or without a return flight from London. Persons not wishing to take up the flight option should join the tour in Yangon, (Rangoon) on day 2 of the itinerary and depart in Yangon on day 10.
Visa requirements: A Myanmar visa is required to be obtained in advance from your nearest embassy. A visa is valid for 3 months from the date of issue so do not apply for your visa until three months before your return date.
e-visas are now available for 67 countries, including UK, Australia, US, Canada, France and Germany http://evisa.moip.gov.mm
You are applying as a Foreign Independent Traveller NOT a Package Tour Group. The hotel for visa purposes is the Asia Plaza Hotel, Rangoon c/o Tour Mandalay (our Ground Handler). You should not require any other details.
For UK residents wishing to apply for a visa at the Embassy, the website is www.myanmarembassylondon.com. Payment is made by postal order.
Please note these are photos of sample hotels and resorts; accommodation options may vary and are subject to availability
Spectacular night time view of the incredible Shwedagon Pagoda from the rooftop bar of the centrally located Asia Plaza Hotel, Rangoon.
The very aptly named Mountain Top Hotel is almost as precariously perched as the nearby Golden Rock itself. Extraordinary views, great location and good service!
Early morning view from the breakfast room at the Grand Hill Hotel in Hpa-An. Nothing ‘flashy’ in this rather off the beaten track destination but Grand Hill is friendly, comfortable, clean with a close to town location so the choice for our 2 night stay in Karen State’s tiny ‘capital’.
Cinderella Hotel. Not only our favourite hotel in Moulmein but one of our favourites anywhere in Burma! Central location, comfy rooms, helpful and friendly service and it’s even got workable Wi-Fi which you can’t say for every hotel in the country!
New tour for 2014 so no feedback available as yet!
Please find below a list of suggested extensions for this tour. For reservations please use the tour booking form on the same page
Head through the picturesque Irrawaddy Delta to Burma’s bay of Bengal Coast for this superb beach stay at Ngwe Saung, or ‘Silver Beach’. Some 9 more..
Due to the very recent opening of certain Burmese land border crossing points we’re very excited to able to offer this new extension to discover more..
As you can imagine with Burma a trip to the beach is much more than just deckchairs and options, other than lying by the pool more..