This exciting program is most used by first time visitor to Myanmar and gives the traveler fascinating access into highlights of the country’s 4 major destinations – Yangon, Bagan, Mandalay, Inle Lake and nearby some smaller towns and villages. This tour is a collection of the best the country has to offer. Recommend for first time travelers to Myanmar.
Upon your arrival in Yangon, welcome by our tour guide and transferred to your hotel for check-in. Enjoy private tour and drive through downtown to explore the city centre and its fabulous mix of architecture and sites. The streets are filled with historical buildings many of which have a faded colonial charm not seen elsewhere in Asia. Learn about the fascinating history of the city as well as get a taste for the more modern side of the city.
Then visit famous Reclining Buddha Pagoda, 70-meter long, and the feet of the statue carved with traditional symbols and often many locals gathering to pay homage and pray. In the late afternoon set off to see the sunset at the breathtaking Shwedagon Pagoda, one of the most beautiful sacred sites in all of Myanmar. The exterior of the stupa is plated with 8,688 solid gold slabs, its tip set with 5,448 diamonds and 2,317 rubies, sapphires and topaz. A huge emerald sits in the middle to catch the first and last rays of the sun. At the pagoda observe local pilgrims and monks offering their devotions and enjoy the amazing sunset view at Shwedagon pagoda.
Morning flight to Bagan. Begin our exploration by visiting a busy local market and gain an insight into the bustling market atmosphere in Bagan. You will spend the day exploring the architectural masterpieces of this amazing town by visit to a diverse selection of the most important pagodas and temples.
This afternoon – visit to the traditional lacquer ware workshop to observe the production of one of Myanmar’s best-known handicrafts. Continue to Ananda Temple, an architectural masterpiece and one of Bagan’s most beautiful temples. Enjoy an unforgettable sunset over the plains from one of the elevated viewpoint. Sit back relax and be amazed by the beauty of Bagan as you watch the sun slowly set behind the ancient Pagodas.
More than just temples, our tour introduces you to provide a great overview of Bagan’s history, culture and local lifestyles. Today see the real way of life for most Myanmar people by visiting villages near Bagan to view the local lifestyle. Continue sightseeing around Bagan and surroundings.
In the late afternoon – transfer to jetty where a private wooden river boat is waiting. Sitting under the shade or on the open-deck you’ll be treated to fabulous views as you cruise down the Irrawaddy River to Shwezigon Pagoda. A private boat tour on the river during sunset time will hopefully show you a spectacular sunset. Relax and enjoy the scenery.
Transfer to the airport for your short flight to legendary Mandalay, last capital of royal Burma, still one of the largest cities in Myanmar, and a cultural and spiritual centre. This morning visit to Mahamuni– the pagoda, one of the country’s most revered Buddha images in Myanmar, covered in over 15 cm of gold leaf. Mandalay is well-known for its skilled craftsmen. Visit local artisan’s workshops of gold leaf making, tapestries, woodcarving and marble carving. Many of the techniques used to create these have remained unchanged for those used centuries ago to craft items for the Royal Court.
In the afternoon visit the beautiful Golden palace teak monastery, the only remaining building from the 19th century Royal Palace. This grand teak building is known for its exquisite woodcarving.
Continue to the Kuthodaw Pagoda, which is known as “the world’s biggest book” due to the Buddhist scripture carved on 729 marble slabs. Before sunset visit a 200-year-old teak bridge, the world’s longest teak bridge built by Mayor U-Bein, one of the most photogenic sights of the country and not to be missed.
After breakfast transfer to Jetty and you’ll board a private local boat for a trip up the Irrawaddy to Mingun (45 min each way). Visit the Mingun Bell, the world’s largest intact bronze bell, the unfinished Mingun Pagoda (built with the intention of being the world’s biggest pagoda). Mingun’s other highlight is the Hisnbyume Pagoda, a white-washed temple built to resemble Mount Meru. Throughout Mingun there are small neighborhoods crafting traditional basketry and other artistic items and there is plenty of time to stop and interact with the craftsmen and friendly locals.
After returning to Mandalay in the afternoon continues sightseeing. In the late afternoon drive to top of Mandalay Hill as the sun begins to set to enjoy magnificent views of the city and Irrawaddy River. Be sure to take some photos of this memorable setting.
Morning flight to Heho, gateway to Inle Lake. From Heho drive about an hour to Nyaung Shwe city Jetty where we pick our wooden boat & transfer to your hotel for check in. Enjoy the full day tour by private boat across the lake, passing through villages with stilted houses and floating gardens. Visit the Phaung Daw Oo Pagoda, the most holy religious site in southern Shan State. Be amazed by the local handicrafts, silk weaving, wooden handlooms and traditional blacksmith methods along the way.
Proceed to Inn Paw Khone Village, meeting with residents to witness the traditional silk-weaving techniques with the stems of lotus flowers. Visiting Inle Lake is not just about being on the water but also about discovering the Shan and Intha villages where you interact with locals, immersing yourself in village life.
After breakfast begin your day with a visit to the market, which rotates locations every five days and where hill tribe people dressed in colorful, traditional outfits to come and sell local products. We continue sightseeing in Inle Lake, maneuvering by boat though long, scenic channels. We will visit the fascinating village of Indein, with its complex of ancient shrines and stupas and walk though exotic colonnades of stairways and shop stalls. We will visit the “long neck” tribal women, and weaving and craft villages perched on stilts. See the lake’s unique “leg rowers” – the Intha people row standing up with one leg. It is a feast for the senses and a photographer’s dream.
Morning flight back to Yangon. Drive through the city and observe the influences of diversity other cultures in the region: St Mary’s Cathedral, built in 1899, and over 120 year old beautiful Rangoon Synagogue. In there you will have the opportunity to meet with Trustee of the Synagogue to learn the Jewish Life in the Pagoda Land. Then walk around Little India and Chinatown – stop to greet the vendors and let them introduce you to their wares – some familiar, some exotic.
Then enjoy a visit to Scott Market, the sprawling 90-year-old Market (closed on Monday and public holidays). At the market you will find a whole variety of interesting Burmese souvenirs, from lacquer ware to gems & jewelry – bargain at the stores to fully experience the Burmese market atmosphere!
After breakfast – day at leisure until transfer to airport for International departure flight.
This private tour can be arranged for single traveler, couple, family and group tour. Prices vary according to hotel standard, when you travel, how many people you travel with, the level of private guiding required and the overall arrangements. We can easily customize the itinerary based on your budget, interests and schedule. Please contact us to discuss your individual requirements
As first-time travelers to Myanmar, we were so grateful that we had Myanmar Shalom to help us with the details. From the amazing hotels to the lovely excursions, we certainly had a memorable trip.
We had been warned that in a country like Myanmar we should be prepared for glitches in our travel but our travel was as smooth and problem free as it could have been. I hope to return to Myanmar in the future to see more of your fascinating country and rest assured we will use Myanmar Shalom to plan our trip.
Your leadership role in the Jewish community of Myanmar and your ability to well manage your travel agent is truly amazing. Sammy, it was such an hour to meet you in Yangon as we have been reading about you and the community in newspapers. We had amazing trip. Your guides & office staff took such a good care for us in each city. Please share our thanks & appreciation to them.
They listened carefully to our desires, kept us informed, and developed a perfect itinerary! We were able to make adjustments and suggestions along the way
What a wonderful experience we had during our Myanmar visit, something that we never cease talking about to our friends. We are fortunate to have travelled to many countries in all parts of the world, but nothing even begins to equal the wonder and beauty of our visit to Myanmar, truly an unforgettable experience. So much of our enjoyment was a result of the care and planning of Myanmar Shalom and of the Samuels, and of their excellent team of guides. We hope you can manage to look after the synagogue and protect that magnificent Torah.