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Hidden Myanmar

Take a challenging trek to Nagaland that lies on the border of India and Myanmar. Explore the ancient hunting trails of Naga Warriors who are known for their now-defunct practice of headhunting. Experience their traditions and lifestyles in spectacular landscape that’s rich in wildlife, flora and nature.

HIGHLIGHTS

Various activities on sites

  • City tour of Yangon, Bagan, and Mandalay and learn about its unique culture
  • Trekking to the most remoted areas of Myanmar and meeting various colorful ethnic groups
  • Cruising the giant lake of Inle whilst admiring the Intha fishermen at work
  • Interacting and learning about the culture and tradition of various tribes in Myanmar

Unforgettable moments

  • Admiring the colorful tradition and culture of Naga tribe in northern Myanmar
  • Seeing the sea of temples in the ancient city of Bagan and learning about its history
  • Cruising along the giant Inle Lake and see the Intha fishermen at work
  • Admiring various amazing temples and learning about the effects of Buddhism on Myanmar culture
  • Admiring the panoramic view of central Myanmar from the peak of mount Popa

Nature exploration

  • The nature of Bagan, Mandalay, and its surrounding areas
  • The fresh nature of the giant lake of Inle and its surrounding area
  • The evergreen nature of northern Myanmar whilst trekking through the hidden routes

Culture experience

  • Experience the culture of various ethnic groups in Myanmar
  • The friendly culture of the ancient cities of Mandalay and Bagan
  • The peasant culture of the countryside of Myanmar whilst exploring throughout the country
  • The bustling culture of Yangon with the effect from western culture wave

Map

Detailed schedule

Day 1 - Mandalay // Hkamti - Lahe

Today’s journey starts with a transfer to the airport for the flight to Hkamti, a remote riverside town located in the heart of Nagaland.

Be picked up from Hkamti airport, cross Chindwin River via a bridge and continue north to Lahe along the snaky road through mountains and valleys. Enjoy a scenic 5-hour drive and arrive at the pretty town of Lahe. Lahe is the capital town of Naga, a self-administrative zone located on Marlar Hill. Upon arrival check-in at a local guesthouse with basic amenities.

This afternoon, explore the town including the traditional Pan where Naga warriors gather to strike the wooden bell during their New Year festival, Buddhist Pagoda and Churches. Dinner at a local restaurant.
 

Notes

Distance: Hkamti – Lahe: 5-hour transfer 

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Day 2 - Lahe - Hwe Htaik (Trek)

After breakfast at a local teashop take the first step to Hwe Htaik for a trek. Follow the trek as it moves gently up and down and observe how the vegetation changes to become a thick evergreen forest. The forests feature a variety of flora and fauna including many rare species of birds.

After a couple of hours following a river to the west, find Hwe Htaik village located on the top of the mountain. It offers great views of the entire valley. The tribe of the village is called Lai Naung clan who are known to keep to themselves and never mix. Arrive at the village after a 1.4km trek.

Dinner and overnight at local home in Hwe Htaik Village.
 

Notes
  • 6 hours of trekking ~ approx. 17 km 
  • Elevation: min. 883 m / max. 1380 m 
  • Difficulty: Hard
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Day 3 - Hwe Htaik - Pon Nyo Nok Inn (Trek)

This morning, experience different cultures while observing everyday life in the village. See the daily activity of pounding corn into meal for breakfast. After breakfast continue trekking towards the next destination of Pon Nyo Nok Inn.

The trail goes straight down all the way to the valley, from here a trail on rolling hills leads us to the village with an ascent at the end. Naga Tribes always lives at the top of the hill for the security reasons because in the past they used to have many enemies due to their tradition as headhunters.

Pon Nyo Nok Inn is beautifully standing on the ridge, secured by higher mountains. Enjoy an unforgettable sunset over the mountains and as well as a fun chance to interact with the curious locals around the fireplace.

Dinner and overnight at village guesthouse.
 

Notes
  • 6 hours of trekking ~ approx. 12 km 
  • Elevation: min. 1136 m / max. 1565 m 
  • Difficulty: Hard
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Day 4 - Pon Nyo Nok Inn - Pon Nyo Nok Kone (Trek)

In the morning after breakfast, bid farewell to the village hosts and head out towards the remote village of Pon Nyo Nok Kone. Hike up to the top of the ridge at an elevation of 2040 metre. The ascent is continuous but not severe and gradually flattens out. The scenery is breathtaking, winding through endless mountains and high-altitude evergreen forests with sweeping views of the surrounding Naga Mountains.

From the top begin to descend to the valley before a steady uphill climb to the final destination of the day. In the afternoon walk around the village to meet with the friendly locals. Pon Nyo Nok Kone is closed to the Myanmar/India border and accessible with motorbikes or 4WD vehicles in the dry season.

Dinner and overnight at a village guesthouse.
 

Notes
  • 9 hours of trekking ~ approx. 19 km 
  • Elevation: min. 780 m / max. 2060 m 
  • Difficulty: Very Hard
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Day 5 - Pon Nyo Nok Kone - Saw Law - Sapalaw Ywar Ma (Trek)

After breakfast, start the scenic trek to Sapalaw Ywar Ma, which is believed to be the oldest and most interesting village located on the slope of the mountain and isolated themselves from other Naga Villages in the area. Today, hike the mixture of uphills and downhills with unforgettable scenery. On arrival at the valley the trail goes straight up to Saw Law, another ancient village believed to be the center of the warriors. There are plenty of opportunities to learn about the village.

Spot the end destination of the trek today that can be seen on the Our destination for today is visible from here distinctly. It’s standing on the slope of the other side of the ridge across Thetyan valley. A gentle trail leads us from Saw Law to the bottom of the ridge before we face the challenge of the day, a steep ascent with plenty of time to enjoy the beautiful views. Feel deserving of success once we get to the village. We will have ample opportunity to enjoy the incredible panorama, a truly un-spoilt wilderness and social interaction with Naga warriors.

Overnight at the village house.
 

Notes
  • 9 hours of trekking ~ approx. 18 km 
  • Elevation: min. 632 m / max. 1200 m 
  • Difficulty: Very Hard
     
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Day 6 - Sapalaw Ywar Ma - Sapalaw Nok Kone (Trek) - Lahe

Wake up with morning song of the village, young girls fetch water with bamboo containers while women busy with pounding corn and rice and men preparing their tools for the farm work or hunting trip. Enjoy the time with locals before we say Goodbye and leave for Lahe.

Our final day trekking starts after a wholesome breakfast. The trail today descends gradually towards the river from where follow the trail going gently up heading to Lahe.

After a few hours trek we hop on the awaiting jeep for a scenic drive of approximately 3 hours which leads us to Lahe. Upon arrival find the time for shower and celebrate success at the local restaurant.

Overnight at local guest house in Lahe. 
 

Notes
  • 7 hours of trekking ~ approx. 18 km 
  • Elevation: min. 390 m / max. 1640 m 
  • Difficulty: Hard 
  • 3 hours transfer by jeep
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Day 7 - Lahe - Hkamti

Morning at leisure to explore the town more and do some shopping before leaving. Then our return journey begins by 4WD to Hkamti. The drive offers the farewell and remarkable views of Naga mountains. Upon arrival check-in the local guest house. Take a free afternoon to explore the town. 

Hkamti was considered part of a contiguous Shan homeland that run from north-east of Myanmar. Few remnants of colonial era still remain. The British created an enclave on a hill named Bo-Gone meaning British Hill, but only the administrative office near Hkamti hospital still remain there. The descendants of “Myosar” or headman family now live normal life like everyone else although their home once the biggest in town. Over the time Naga have migrated in this fertile land and now the Shan and Naga are quite evenly split.

Dinner at local restaurant and overnight at Guest House.
 

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Day 8 - Hkamti // Mandalay

After breakfast, enjoy a few more hours of relaxation before departing to Hkamti airport for our flight to Mandalay.

Upon arrival, transfer to your hotel and relax for the rest of the day.
 

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Day 9 - Mandalay - Sagaing - Ava - Amarapura

After breakfast at the hotel, depart for an excursion around Mandalay to explore the former capitals of Sagaing, Ava and Amarapura.

Cross a bridge over the Irrawaddy River to Sagaing. The Sagaing Hill here is widely regarded to be the religious center of Myanmar. With 600 white-painted pagodas and monasteries, more than 3,000 monks, and 100 meditation centers, there’s no shortage of things to see and do here. Swan Oo Pon Nya Shin and U Min Thone Sae are two of the must-see pagodas every visitor must see.

Afterwards, continue south to the city of Ava, the capital of Myanmar from the 14th to the 18th century. From here, take a short ferry ride across the river to meet with a horse and cart that will be waiting. While using this traditional method of transportation, visit some of Ava’s highlights such as the old wooden Bagaya Monastery and the remains of the Royal Palace. During the tour of Ava, also stop at some of the many villages located amongst Ava’s ruins. Enjoy lunch in Ava (own account) before returning to the car.

Finally, visit Amarapura, a former capital whose name means “City of Immortality”. Although the ancient city is charming in its own right, the real star is U Bein Bridge. Constructed out of 984 teakwood posts from the deserted Inwa Palace, it is 1.2 kilometres in length, making it the longest teakwood construction in the world. That’s not the real reason it is so iconic, though. Every day, as the sun begins to dip below the horizon, U Bien Bridge is host to what some consider to be one of the world’s most spectacular sunsets. Enjoy a stroll across this famous bridge and be sure to take in the unforgettable sight of it being bathed in golden light late in the afternoon.

Continue back to the hotel and, if timing allows, visit some local craft shops.

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Day 10 - Mandalay - Mingun

Transfer to the Mandalay jetty and board a private local boat for a 1-hr cruise on the Irrawaddy River to Mingun.

Visit the main sites of Mingun beginning with the famous Mingun Pahtodawgyi.  This huge brick structure was left unfinished after an astrologer predicted the King would die should the temple be completed.  In the 1800s, an earthquake left several large cracks in the structure.  Continue on to the beautiful Hsinbyume Pagoda, whose distinctive style is meant to resemble the mythical Mount Meru.  Then, see the Mingun Bell which, weighing in at more than 90 tons, is considered the world’s largest uncracked ringing bell.

Return to Mandalay by boat and enjoy lunch at a local restaurant.

Next, visit Mahamuni Pagoda. This pagoda is home to one of the country’s most revered Buddha image which, over the years, has been covered with meters of gold leaf, giving it a distinct ‘lumpy’ texture. This is the perfect place to witness Burmese culture in action, as a great number of locals come to pay their respects and earn merit.

Mandalay is well-known for its skilled craftsmen. After Mahamuni Pagoda, tour some of the city’s traditional workshops, and learn about the city’s unique cottage industry.  Observe the production of wood carvings, kalaga tapestries, and gold-leaf using techniques that have remained unchanged for centuries. 

OPTIONAL ACTIVITY: Make a marionette- Join local craftsmen at their workshop and create a unique traditional puppet. A hands-on way to learn about the local culture and create a memorable, personalized souvenir!  

Continue the tour of Mandalay with a visit to Kuthodaw Pagoda, whose 729 marble stone slabs of Buddhist scriptures have earned it the title being home to the ‘World’s Biggest Book’.  Continue to Shwenandaw Monastery, the only remaining building from the 19th century Royal Palace. This grand teakwood building is known for its exquisite woodcarving.

Afterwards, there’s an option head to the top of Mandalay Hill -the highest point in the city. From this vantage point, get amazing views of the city below as the sun sets.

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Day 11 - Mandalay // Bagan

After an early breakfast at the hotel, transfer to the Airport for a flight to Bagan (Nyaung Oo). 

On arrival, the journey begins with views of the magnificent plains of Bagan on the way to the golden stupa of Shwezigon Pagoda for an introduction into Bagan’s rich history. Then, visit nearby Wetkyi-In Gubyaukgyi, a cave temple with exquisite jataka mural paintings, and the elegant Htilominlo Temple, noted for its fine plaster carvings and glazed sandstone decorations.

In the afternoon, pay a visit to a traditional lacquerware workshop and 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.  Built in the early Mon-style, Ananda contains two unique Buddha images whose expressions seem to change depending on the distances from which they are viewed.

From here, travel by horse cart for a tour passing Thatbyinnyu, the highest temple in Bagan, Dhammayangyi Temple, a massive temple noted for its remarkable brickwork, and Sulamani Temple.

Continue to an elevated viewpoint to watch an unforgettable sunset over the plains before returning to the hotel.

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Day 12 - Bagan - Saw - Maw Chaung

After breakfast, we travel by 4WD to Maw Chaung, via Saw on the western edge of the Mt. Victoria National Park. 

Once we passed Masadui village road goes up and we found ourselves on the ridge with 1200m in elevation. (Once we get in to the Chin country weather gradually become cool and pleasant. It’s a great escape of the heat and dust of the plain during summer however it could be rather cold during winter especially between December and February).
 

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Day 13 - Maw Chaung - Khoke

Breakfast and we drive to the trek head and from where we start trek in the wild part of Chin Hills. 

First, we cross a plain but right after we get in to the buffer zone of the National Park. We walk along the small path under the shade of large trees enjoying pristine forests fill with numerous birds and small mammals. On our left a steady flow on Mone Chaung river with its valley having back drop of Mt. Mahura range.  

Behind these mountains lies Palawat township of Chin and beyond would be Rakhine highlands. Once we reach a road fork to Khoke village then our trek goes right through the National Park amongst the rich forests fill with wild orchids and birds.

Trail goes mostly down and we reach Khoke village in the late afternoon. Khoke village, located slightly outside of the National Park. We have great time interact with the friendly locals, most of them have never seen foreigner.
 

Notes
  • Distance: 16KM | 5-6 hours of trekking
  • Elevation: Min 1384m | Max 2067m
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Day 14 - Khoke - Sai Nan

We set up early for our today destination of Sai Nan. Trek goes along the valley and pass old Sai Nan village where we see many burial stone slabs and sacrificial posts. 

From here trek goes slightly up all the way to Yet Chaung village (used to call Salinmintha). 

Then we trek to the beautiful ridge Sai Nan. As soon as we left Yet Chaung we found an old village with ancient burial stone slabs. Sai Nan, beautifully parched at 1399 meter at the shoulder of the range.
 

Notes
  • Distance: 14KM | 6-8 hours of trekking
  • Elevation: Min 784m | Max 1725m
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Day 15 - Sai Nan - Kyi Kwin

Breakfast and we set up for our today destination at Kyi Kwin. At first trail goes down through farmland but once we cross creek from where trail goes straight up through a farm land but once we get on to the ridge trail become gentle till we get to another small creek. 

After the creek trail goes up all the way till we get to the upper ridge of the mountain fill with healthy forests covers with wild flowers. This is the place one usually spots many wild animals like Civet and many kinds of bird species.

This trail was originally built by the British but serving nicely with gentile ups and downs. Today we stay on a short distance on a dirt road but amongst heavy forested land but soon enough we get back to mule trek. Kyi Kwin, located at 1367 meter above sea level on the side of a hill looking wide open view of the mountains.

Dinner and overnight at village home. 
 

Notes
  • Distance: 12KM | 6-8 hours of trekking
  • Elevation: Min 1194 m | Max 1789 m
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Day 16 - Kyi Kwin - Aukviton

Breakfast and we follow along the hunting trail as usual enjoying the view. 

First trail goes down all the way to a creek and from here trail goes straight up but once we get to the road head we stay on a smaller trek path leads to Makhon Htui. Here we stay on the dirt road for one hour or so but we found the trail goes back on the mule treks which take us to Aukviton.

Today is the first day we have a view of Kanpetlet, calmly parched on the edge of the mountain range. Dinner and overnight at village home.
 

Notes
  • Distance: 14KM | 5-6 hours of trekking
  • Elevation: Min 1100 m | Max 1515 m
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Day 17 - Aukviton - Sor Long (Kanpetlet)

Breakfast and we left for our final destination to Kanpetlet. Most of the day we stay on small dirt road but it left out just enough for good trekking path filling up with vegetation as no vehicle could mobilize on due to land slide and its challenging terrain.

Our first leg was up to Saw creek where we enjoy a picnic lunch and had a good rest and swim in the crystal clear and cold water. From here trail goes up all the way with pretty open view mostly cultivation field and some lesser forests however stay green with lots of singing birds. Here we are welcome by and interact with tribal community. 

Later we enjoy traditional Chin dinner and Khaung (traditional beer) follow by Chin traditional cultural show. Overnight at So Long Community Lodge.
 

Notes
  • Distance: 14KM | 4-5 hours of trekking
  • Elevation: Min 741 m | Max 1460 m
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Day 18 - Kanpetlet - Bagan

Breakfast and we explore part of Kanpetlet, observe Chin tribal women wearing different facial tattoo patterns. Each ethnic group has their own pattern which distinguishes them from one another. 

Later we set off for Saw and then to Bagan, driving down through Chin Hills along winding roads with green vegetation. Once we approach low land we feel the humidity and we are looking forward to the heat and dust through the main land. Upon arrival at Bagan, we check in at our hotel to end this unique experience.
 

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Day 19 - Bagan - Mt. Popa - Salay

Take a break from temple touring in Bagan to visit Mount Popa and Salay. 

Start with a drive to Chauk and visit a fabulous morning market filled with locals buying and selling their goods. 

Continue on to the village of Salay, an important Buddhist centre, and visit its famed wooden monastery with intricate carvings. 

Turn east and head through the countryside to Mount Popa, an extinct volcano which is believed to be home to ‘Nats’, or ancient Burmese animist spirits. Climb to the top for stunning views of the surrounding countryside before heading back down to Bagan. 
 

Notes

Salay monastery museum closed on Mondays, Tuesdays and public holidays

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Day 20 - Bagan - Villages Visit

Start at the Nyaung Oo Morning Market where locals gather every day to buy and sell everything from fresh produce and meats to flowers and pottery. There are many food stalls and tea shops around, which provide the perfect vantage point for observing local culture.  

Then learn the interesting process of creating “Poneyay” (pea powder paste) and see how local plum jam is made and packed. Additionally, visit workshops of two of the region’s best-known products: handmade lacquerware and wooden handicrafts. Finally, visit a village and observe about how Cartwrights make a traditional bullock carts, still used by farmers and locals throughout the country. 

The remainder of your day is at leisure to relax and explore at leisure
 

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Day 21 - Bagan // Heho - Pindaya - Inle Lake

Pick up from your hotel and transfer to airport and fly to Heho.

On arrival meet and greet our Inle lake guide, continue by car and enjoy a scenic drive to the small quiet town Pindaya, 48 km north of Kalaw, to visit Pindaya Lake and Pindaya Cave, well-known for its thousands of Buddha images. 

Next visit to tea leaf plantations around danu villages on the hills, Experience the picking tea leaf, how to make the best green tea and enjoy the Danu style tea leaf salad. And Visit Bamboo umbrella workshop, proceed to Nyaung Shwe watch the sunset from Red Mountain Vineyard, Transfer to your hotel.
 

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Day 22 - Inle Lake - Exploration

Our guide will pick up you from your hotel at early morning. Firstly, we proceed to 5-days market of Inle Lake to stock up and bargain as locals with help of your guide. 

Embark on the way to Local Village you may see floating gardens and stilt houses on the lake.  We will visit to one of local house which is located side by side of floating gardens and there is a creek nearby house therefore you have the opportunity to ride canoe and   pick up fresh vegetables such as tomato, green chili, eggplant and so on. Furthermore, you can also pick up the fishes which are fished by the host in the floating garden his own. 

 And then, you will start cooking and prepare Lunch together with the host in a kitchen of local rustic. You will interact with the host families and learn more about local cooking recipe and rural life style of them. After the meal you will have the opportunity to observe bamboo handicrafts for fishing equipment and try the traditional Innthar fishing. In the afternoon, Visit to Nge Phe Kyaung Monastery and visit to 14th and 15th century ruins pagoda of Nyaung Oak, Shwe Inn Dein Paya.

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Day 23 - Inle Lake - Heho // Yangon

After breakfast, take the flight to Yangon.

Upon arrival, set off for a tour of the city’s highlights. First, visit Kyaukhtatgyi Pagoda, which is home to a 70-meter-long reclining Buddha. Continue through the city, stopping periodically to take photos or relax with a drink at a local tea shop. 

From here, continue to Shwedagon Pagoda the most revered Buddhist temple in Myanmar. Although the origins of the pagoda are unclear, the locals believe that the original structure was built 2500 years ago and renovated several times before taking its current shape in the 15th century. The 8-sided central stupa is 99-meters tall, gilded with gold leaf, and surrounded by 64 smaller stupas. 

Continue to a local tea shop for a chance to experience an integral part of Burmese life: drinking tea! Select from an array of snacks and enjoy a coffee or tea while sitting amongst businessmen, friends and families who gather at the tea shop to socialize or conduct business.
 

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Day 24 - Yangon - Bago - Kyaikhtiyo

Depart Yangon in the morning for a scenic drive to Bago, the capital of the 16th century Mon Kingdom.

The visit in Bago begins at Shwethalyaung Temple which houses a beautiful 55-meter long reclining Buddha. Continue to the Mon-style Shwemawdaw Pagoda, one of the most venerated in Myanmar and whose 114-meter spire is taller than the one at Shwedagon Pagoda. While in Bago, take time to visit the city’s local sites, including the town market and a traditional Mon neighbourhood for a short stroll around the village.

In the afternoon, arrive at Kyaikhtiyo base camp. Travel by local, open-air truck along a winding road (45 minutes) before being dropped off a short five-minute walk from Golden Rock. For a bit of royal treatment, get carried up to the top by four porters in a specially-made sedan chair which allows one to enjoy the views without any work! (Extra cost not included) 

A huge boulder covered by gold leaf and delicately balanced on the edge of a cliff, Golden Rock is one of Myanmar's most important pilgrimage sites.  The pagoda here is said to hold a hair of the Buddha, and Buddhist from across the country come here to pay homage. 

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Day 25 - Kyaikhtiyo - Hpa An

OPTIONAL: In the morning there is an option to visit Golden Rock again to see the rising sun casting its rays upon the rock. Starting in the blue hours before dawn, local pilgrims gather by the rock to make offerings in the solitude of the morning, making for a unique cultural experience and photographic opportunity. 

Return down to base camp along the same route by open-air truck.

In the afternoon, continue on a two-hour drive by road to Hpa An, a small town surrounded by beautiful limestone rock formations which is the capital of the Karen state.  En-route, visit to Bayint Nyi Cave and Kaw Gun Cave. The former has a hot spring lake with beautiful views of a temple complex and cave. Kaw Gun Cave is also fascinating, with over 2000 stone tablets with Mon inscriptions and hundreds of Buddha statues.  Arrive in Hpa An and check in to the hotel. 

Afterwards, take a leisurely walk on the road along the Thanlyin River for a beautiful photographic backdrop of mountains and boats.
 

Notes

Kyaikhtiyo - Hpa An (147 km): 2h

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Day 26 - Hpa An - Mawlamyaing

Today’s first stop is Sadan Cave. Typically, only accessible between November to March, this cave brings out the inner Indiana Jones. Sadan starts off as a typical Myanmar cave, full of Buddha images and even a reclining Buddha. While heading to the back of the cave, a natural tunnel comes into view. Follow a row of lights through the tunnel for about 15 minutes to get to the other side. While approaching the end of the tunnel, a magnificent view of a hidden lake and meadow come into sight.

Stop and have tea or coffee at the tea shop at the edge of the lake. From here, hire one of the local boatmen for a tour around the lake (sit on the bamboo floor of the boat, as there are no seats) and through another cave accessible only by boat.

Then return to the car and head off to see Zwe Kapin, one of many bizarre limestone formations in the area.  At the foot of the mountain, head toward Lumbini Gardens to see more than a thousand identical Buddha statues.

Then continue to Kyauk Kalat Pagoda, a small stupa perched on top of a pillar-like rock formation on a small island on the lake.

Continue the drive to Mawlamyine, a drive of about one hour. Arrive in the afternoon at the Mon State capital of Mawlamyaing, formerly known as Moulmein. Situated near the mouth of the Thanlwin River, this attractive town is surrounded by leafy, tropical areas and has a hilly ridge serving as a backdrop.  The town was also the capital of British Burma between 1827 and 1852 and still retains some of the atmosphere of its colonial times. Upon arrival, transfer to the hotel.

Notes

Hpa An – Mawlamyine (61 km): 1h

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Day 27 - Mawlamyaing - Exploration

Spend today touring the sites of Mawlamyaing. Start with the colorful Mawlamyaing Central Market, a bustling atmosphere where miscellaneous local items are sold.

Proceed to Mahamuni Pagoda, built in traditional Mon-style, and Kyaik Than Lan Pagoda, the city's tallest and most visible stupa. Continue to the beautiful Seindon Mibaya, a wooden monastery that’s over 100 years old. Walk along the town’s Strand Road for a glimpse of the impressive Kaladan Mosque, which was built during the colonial era when many Indians came to work for the British in Mawlamyaing.

In the afternoon, board a private boat for a visit to Khaung Sae Kyun (Shampoo Island). It is said that Mon Kings once came to this place to make public announcements. Interesting hair-washing ceremonies also take place on the island.

Head back to Mawlamyaing and finish the day up at the local “view point”. From here, get a stunning panoramic view of Mawlamyaing, the Thanlwin River and Bilu Island during sunset.

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Day 28 - Mawlamyaing - Moeyungyi

After breakfast, depart Mawlamyaing and head towards Yangon. Along the way, stop at Moeyungyi Wetlands, arriving by mid-afternoon. Moeyungyi is a vital habitat for migratory waterfowl. A recent census revealed that 125 species of birds call the area home.

Additionally, the wetlands are a stopping point for millions of migratory birds that pass through the area every year. In addition to being a great place for bird-watchers, there’s a fantastic array of other flora and fauna to keep nature-lovers in awe.  

In the afternoon, take a boat excursion through the wetlands.  Watch buffaloes bathe in the shallow waters, see a vast number of birds, and encounter local fisherman.  

Afterwards, explore the area around the resort on foot for the opportunity to get additional wildlife spotting. (Those wishing to do more bird watching have the option to do another boat trip early the next morning when the likelihood of spotting rare birds is highest).

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Day 29 - Moeyungyi - Yangon

Head back to Yangon after breakfast in the morning, arriving around lunch time. Transfer to the hotel for a few hours of rest before heading to colonial downtown, where East meets West with a mix of pagodas, monuments and colonial buildings.  Walk around Sule Pagoda, City Hall, Victory Monument and some of the nearby colonial buildings for great insight into some of the area’s local highlights.

Around sunset, begin a trishaw food tour of Yangon. A melting pot of ethnicities and nationalities, Yangon is the perfect place to taste a wide selection of weird and wonderful food. This tour samples traditional Burmese, Shan, and Indian dishes before ending at the lively 19th street for an outdoor barbeque. The entire journey is done by local trishaws, a great way to experience a city caught between the past and future.

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Day 30 - Yangon

Free at leisure then transfer to the airport for departure flight

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We believe you have the right to arm yourselves with as much information as possible before making any decision.

Check below our detailed tips & guide for every places to visit in Myanmar, recommendation regarding the inclusion in each theme you prefer, and what you can do based on the time frame you have.

PLACES TO VISIT IN Myanmar
Yangon
bee-white Yangon

Bagan
bee-white Bagan

Mandalay
bee-white Mandalay

Inle Lake
bee-white Inle Lake

Mergui Archipelago
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Ngapali Beach
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Myanmar PLANS BY TRAVEL THEME
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Check out all the must-see places and things to do & see

Luxury
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Unique experience combined with top-notch services

Wellness & Leisure
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Easy excursion combined with week-long beach break

Family
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The combination of fun and educational activities

Unseen
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Reveal off-the-beatentrack routes, least explored destinations, and unknown tribe groups

Trek & Hike
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Explore the least visited destinations and unknown experience on foot

Cycling
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Explore every corners of the destination on two wheels

Honeymoon
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Easy excursions combined with unique experience making the long-lasting romantic memories

Cruise
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The combination of some must-see experience and the cruise tour along the mighty rivers

Myanmar PLANS BY TIME FRAME
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Myanmar TRAVEL TIPS & GUIDE

Either are you wondering about best time to visit, visa policy, or how to get the cheapest flight, we have your back!

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Myanmar BLOG ARTICLES

Thanaka or  thanakha is a yellowish-white cosmetic paste made from ground bark. It is a distinctive feature of the culture of Myanmar, seen commonly applied to the face and sometimes the arms of women and girls, and is used to a lesser extent also by men and boys. The use of thanaka has also spread to neighboring countries including Thailand.

Within this article, we will learn everything about Thanaka and the benefits of its powder in making a secret beauty ingredient of Burmese women.

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Burmese Longyi, along with the country’s longtime history, art, and heritage sites has contributed to the richness of the local culture that will grasp your attention whenever you find yourself in strolling around the streets of Myanmar. With just a piece of fabric grasping on the lower part of the body through time, the longyi has made it become an incredible pattern of Myanmar traditional costume for both men and women. In this article, we are going to find out the secret of Myanmar quintessence through Longyi, about why it has been worn for centuries by the Burmese people.

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Kachin Manaw Festival is an annual traditional dance festival celebrated by Kachin people. Mostly held at Myitkyina, Kachin State also known as Manaw Land in Myanmar and also celebrated by Kachin people around the world. Manaw is the largest festival in Myitkyina, held at the beginning of January. Manaw Festival is the most significant event for Kachin People. Tribes of Kachin gather together in Manaw ground and dance around the erected Manaw poles. The Manau dance is performed at Manau festivals, which originated as part of the ‘Nat’ or spirit worship of the past.

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If your idea of fun involves a blurry riot of colour and explosions, look no further than the Taunngyi Fire Balloon Festival, which takes place in the culturally diverse capital of Shan State over several days every November. This celebration is held around the Full Moon of Tazaungmon, a Myanmar national holiday that marks the end of rainy season and is also known as the Tazaungdaing Festival of Lights.

Traditionally, it is a festival to pay homage to the Sulamani Pagoda by sending up decorated hot air balloons, and lately it also became as a Hot Air Balloon Competition Festival and the festival is divided into two parts; daytime competition and nighttime competition. In the daytime, hot air balloons are sent up with the shapes of various animals and mythical creatures, and hot air balloons with firework & fire-cracker (known as Nya Mee Gyi) and lot of lanterns are hanging in the hot air balloons (known as Seinnaban) are sent up in the nighttime.

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All year round, visitors to Myanmar can experience the country’s warm and rich culture. However, one particularly special and unique time to visit is during the Naga New Year Festival, which will be held in Lahe around mid-January every year.

This special time allows visitors the chance to experience the traditions and customs of Myanmar’s Naga people. For the Naga, Lahe (New Year) is a significant time when people share their wishes and hopes for the future, and families are reunited.

It is a time of great celebration; where lively dances are performed in traditional dress, to the beat and sounds of traditional instruments.

Few tourists are lucky enough to share in the joy and festivities of the Naga New Year, but those who do are richly rewarded with an incredible cultural experience.

Overall, for those who seek genuine cultural exchange and the opportunity to take some truly stunning photographs, the Naga New Year is an amazing and unique festival to attend.

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The full moon of the Thadingyut month is when Buddhists believe the Buddha descended back to earth after three months of preaching in the spiritual realm above. While the rest of Myanmar celebrates it by lighting the Buddha's way home, the town of Kyaukse near Mandalay commemorates it a little differently: with a Elephant Dance Festival, populated not by real elephants, but by pairs of dancers in gigantic elephant costumes.

Hmm... What is it? What makes it so special? and how to join the festival? You will have all the answers below.

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CHECK OUT OTHER DESTINATIONS
Vietnam
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A land of staggering natural beauty and cultural complexities, of dynamic megacities and hill-tribe villages, Vietnam is both exotic and compelling.
Thailand
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Friendly and food-obsessed, hedonistic and historic, cultured and curious, Thailand tempts visitors with a smile as golden as the country's glittering temples and tropical beaches.
Cambodia
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There's a magic about this charming yet confounding kingdom that casts a spell on visitors. In Cambodia, ancient and modern worlds collide to create an authentic adventure.
Laos
bee-white Laos
Vivid nature, voluptuous landscapes and a vibrant culture collide with a painful past and optimistic future to make Laos an enigmatic experience for the adventurous.
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