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Here’s What Your Amazing Holiday Could Look Like...
Take an in-depth look at the temples, markets, pagodas and shrines that make up Myanmar, one of the world’s most colourful countries. As well as the classic stops of Yangon, Mandalay, Bagan and Inle Lake, you’ll stay in the ancient capital of Pyay, call in at the lakeside village of Indein and spend two nights cruising the gentle waters of the Irrawaddy River from Bagan to Mandalay in style.
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Your Example Itinerary
Fly from the UK to Yangon.
Arrive in Yangon and relax after your flight. Perhaps take a wander around the markets and admire the colonial architecture, or simply chill out at your hotel. The next day, set off on a full day tour of the city sights. You’ll visit Scott Market for a bargain or two, see the enormous reclining Buddha at Chauk Htat Gyi Pagoda and view the famous Shwedagon Pagoda with its 110m diamond-encrusted, gold-plated spire lit up at night.
Drive to Pyay, a UNESCO World Heritage site and ancient capital of the Pyu Kingdom. Discover the Baw Baw Gyi pagodas, Be Be Paya and Payama, and visit the fascinating Srikshetra Museum to learn more about the Pyu Kingdom. You’ll take in the views from the top of the Shwesandaw Pagoda and, after a short boat ride on the Irrawaddy River, spend a morning in Akauk Taung admiring the Buddha images caved into the cliffs.
Drive cross country to Bagan, watching the changing landscapes as you go. On arrival, gaze across the 2,200 temples, shrines, pagodas and monasteries that make up this mesmerising sight, before watching the sunset over the landscape from the top of Shwesandaw Pagoda. For the ultimate experience, view the stupas over the misty sunrise from a hot-air balloon, and activity that’s best booked in advance (not included).
Board the delightful Irrawaddy Princess II cruise ship, sit back and relax for your Irrawaddy River cruise from Bagan to Mandalay. From the deck, you can admire the passing villages and fields, as well as stopping in Yandabo, a village famous for its terrcotta. Learn more about the pottery making process and learn more about the Yandabo Treaty, signed here in 1826. Best of all though, is simply watching the passing scenery as you drift by.
Arrive in Mandalay, disembark and spend the afternoon ticking off the sights. Start with the dominating Mandalay Hill, with its moated palace, then move on to the Mahamuni Pagoda, see the world’s largest book at Kuthodaw Pagoda and visit a gold leaf workshop to learn more about this craft. The next day, head to the monastery at Amarapura and the many stupas at Sagaing, before viewing the Leaning Tower of Ava at Inwa.
Fly on to Heho and transfer to Inle Lake, where you’ll enjoy a relaxing boat ride, stopping to admire the floating gardens and traditional villages as you go. Keep a look out for the unusual local rowing technique, as fishermen paddle with just one foot, which they make look very easy. Spend the afternoon relaxing on the water’s edge and looking for water birds. The next day, take a boat to Indein to see the stupas and handicrafts including loom-woven silk, jewellery and Burmese cigars.
Depart Heho and return to the UK.
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