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View from a Pagoda, Bagan, Myanmar

Highlights of Myanmar

  • TAILOR-MADE HOLIDAY IDEA

Duration

12 Days

Prices Start from

£2,800 ex. flights

Over 12 days explore the beautiful scenery and fascinating sites of Yangon, Mandalay and Bagan. Venture out of the cities, visiting forests and lakes and meeting the people that make this country so special. The perfect trip for a first-time visitor to Myanmar.

Key Highlights of this Itinerary

Pagodas, Bagan, Mynamar 1

Ancient Temples of Bagan

Wander amidst the thousands of temples and pagodas dotting the plains of Bagan.

River at sunset with silhouettes of four traditional boats against yellow sky. 2

River Cruising

Cruise the mighty Irrawaddy River stopping for sundowners on a sandbank.

Close up of Asian Elephant slit by evening sunshine. 3

Elephant Conservation

Visit a family run elephant camp providing sanctuary and care to these gentle giants.

Fishermen on water stood on traditional wooden fishing canoe on one leg with conical shaped fishing net. 4

The Leg Rowers of Inle Lake

Witness local fishermen with their distinctive ‘leg’ rowing on Inle Lake.

Why we like it

This holiday to Myanmar covers the highlights of this fabulous country but with experiences designed to introduce you to the people – local personalities with fascinating stories. From colourful robed monks and nuns to tribal communities and conservationists this trip combines exquisite temples with local culture and some beautiful scenery. Stay in a range of lovely accommodation reminiscent of colonial times and maybe add on a few days to escape to a remote island retreat…

Don't forget, we will customise this journey to suit you.

Explore our suggested itinerary

Keys:
Internal Flight
  • Day 1
    Yangon
  • Day 2
    Yangon
  • Day 3
    Yangon - Mandalay
  • Day 4
    Mandalay
  • Day 5
    Mandalay - Bagan
  • Day 6 - 7
    Bagan
  • Day 8
    Bagan - Heho - Kalaw
  • Day 9
    Kalaw - Inle Lake
  • Day 10
    Inle Lake
  • Day 11
    Inle Lake - Heho - Yangon
  • Day 12
    Yangon
Fisherman, Inle Lake, Myanmar
Leg rower on Inle Lake
Floating Village, Inle Lake, Myanmar
Floating village on Inle Lake
Old Monk Rowing, Inle Lake, Taungi, Myanmar
Monk rowing on Inle Lake
Padaung Woman Weaving, Inle Lake, Myanmar
Padaung woman weaving, Inle Lake

Floating Markets, Leg Rowers and Trekking

Famed for its ‘leg’ rowers Inle Lake is a spectacular freshwater lake at an altitude of almost 1,000 feet. Inhabited by the Intha people or ‘leg rowers’, who have developed a culture that has survived for centuries these friendly fishermen are an iconic site on the water. Stilted villages surround the fringes of the lake, home to hill tribe communities where local cottage industries thrive and colourful floating markets take place.

Cycle to a nearby vineyard for spectacular sunset views across the lake and trek into the surrounding hills to discover seldom visited villages.

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Monks with Alms, Myanmar
Monks with alms
Shwedagon Pagoda, Yangon, Myanmar
Shwedagon Pagoda, Yangon
Three Saffron robed novice monks walking on white wave shaped carvings of temple.
Monks, Sagaing
Golden stupas and temples set in lush woodland with river beyond.
Sagaing
Rear view of pink robed nuns carrying goods on heads.
Pink robed nuns

A Spiritual Insight

Join one of our local guides to experience some of Myanmar’s sacred sites from a different perspective – through the eyes of spiritual communities. East of Mandalay on the banks of the Irrawaddy lie the temple studded hillsides of Sagaing, glinting with golden stupas. Widely regarded as the religious centre of Myanmar it’s winding streets are a vision of red and pink robes as thousands of resident monks and nuns go about their days. Join a group of resident nuns for a simple lunch and the chance to chat – open to discussion these women offer a fascinating insight into their way of life.

In Yangon, after a traditional Burmese breakfast, enter Shwedagon Pagoda via the back door and gain a deeper insight into Buddhism, animist beliefs and the spiritual side of Myanmar. Meet with monks, fortune tellers and even a traditional medicine centre.

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Ancient Temples, Bagan, Myanmar
Bagan
Balloons over Bagan, Inle Lake, Myanmar
Hot air ballooning over Bagan
Temple Entrance, Bagan, Myanmar
Temple entrance in Bagan

Bagan from Above or Below

The ancient, lost city of Bagan in Myanmar is an extraordinary site set over 70 square kilometres of open countryside and farmland, framed by a backdrop of distant mountains. The 4,000 or so temples scattered across plains that are still lived on and cultivated are all that remain of the 11th Century capital. Join our expert guides to explore the temples and their mural covered interiors by e-bike, horse and cart and on foot. Picnic amidst hidden, often deserted temples or admire the gilded structures in the soft dawn light from the lofty heights of a hot air balloon – perfect to appreciate the sheer scale of this extensive complex.

Guestroom, Wa Ale Island Resort, Mergui Archipelago, Myanmar
Wa Ale guestroom
Wa Ale Resort, Eagle Ray, Mergui, Myanmar
Eagle ray
Wa Ale Resort, Giant Hornbill, Mergui, Myanmar
Giant hornbill
Ngapali Beach, Myanmar
Ngapali Beach

Rest and Relaxation - A Possible Extension

Rest, relaxation and beach are not always words that spring to mind when planning a holiday to Myanmar, however there are some lovely options to end your holiday. Escape the world amidst the 800 islands of the Mergui archipelago and the magical retreat of Wa Ale. Located on a remote island within the Lampi Marine National Park this isolated escape offers a wonderful chance to relax, explore mangroves, rainforest trails, some fabulous snorkelling and dive sites as well as supporting local conservation efforts.

For understated comfort on a peaceful stretch of palm fringed beach, head to Ngapali, isolated from the rest of the country by mountains and dotted with fishing villages.

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Accommodation

Below you can see some of the wonderful places we recommend you stay on your journey.

Aureum Palace Hotel, Bagan £££££

  • Boutique

Set amongst 27 acres of lush, tropical gardens, The Aureum Palace Hotel is a tranquil retreat in the heart of Bagan. Spacious villas lace the resort’s expansive gardens and are lavishly appointed with hand-crafted teak furnishings, antiques and local artefacts. Dining options are extensive with Myanmar and Thai cuisine or for Italian food and wines, dine at Casa D’Enzo. Casual cocktails and lighter fare are available at the resort’s many outdoor terraces and cafes and poolside dining are available throughout the day.

View Property

Sanctum Inle Resort £££££

  • Boutique

Located close to Inle Lake Sanctum Inle Resort looks more like a European Monastery than a Burmese Hotel but the renaissance style and verdant grounds provide a lovely base to explore. The 94 rooms are spacious and bright and there are plenty of spots from which to enjoy the lake views including the 20-metre infinity pool, built into the hillside.

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Belmond Governor’s Residence £££££

  • City
  • Boutique

The Belmond Governor’s Residence Hotel is an imposing two-storey Burmese mansion dating from the 1920s. Located in the quieter Embassy district, adjacent to Shwedagon Pagoda and set amidst tropical gardens. The 47 rooms overlook either the courtyard or lotus gardens and the spa and swimming pool offer a lovely spot to unwind after a day’s sightseeing.

View Property

Let’s chat

Speak to our experts

Our team is waiting to help you tailor a trip that will leave you with stories for a lifetime. Call us on

01285 601 784

Send us an enquiry

Or send us a quick email below and start your next journey.

Call us

Your expertise helped us with our choices of activity, and we were often pleasantly surprised by some of the things arranged - the boat building at Inle was fascinating, we loved eating in the Burmese houses and thought that a real highlight and adored the ballooning in Bagan.

Myanmar

A note on price

Prices will vary depending on the time of year you are travelling. Prices do not include international flights. Please ask one of our Travel Experts for an accurate quote. Flights purchased through Steppes Travel departing from the UK are ATOL protected.

This Itinerary
Price
From £2,800 Per person

When to travel

Myanmar in January

The peak season, with hot and dry weather across the country. River flows are still sufficient for travel by boat, the beaches are sunny, and the alpine regions are warming up.

Myanmar in February

Peak season continues as temperatures climb, but are not yet uncomfortable. Accommodation fills up very quickly so you need to book in advance.

Myanmar in March

Still a busy time, with many hotels filling up quickly. Temperatures continue to climb, and you may wish to explore in the morning and relax in the afternoon.

Myanmar in April

Temperatures peak at over 40°C in some central regions, but there is still very little rainfall. A popular time to experience the New Year celebrations in the country.

Myanmar in May

Scorching temperatures prevail throughout much of the country, but as the month progresses the weather changes. Winds pick up, and the chance of a shower increases, but it is a quieter time to visit.

Myanmar in June

Temperatures drop to around 30C across much of the country, as monsoon season approaches. Beaches start to close up, as visitor numbers decrease.

Myanmar in July

Much of the country experiences rain, but the northeast of the country can be stunning at this time of year and incredibly quiet. Travelling by road is difficult, but it is the perfect time to hop on a cruise on the Irrawaddy river.

Myanmar in August

Widespread rain throughout the country, although the central regions remain relatively dry. River travel continues to be preferable to road travel. The countryside is at its most verdant and beautiful though so you will be rewarded greatly with any sunny spells.

Myanmar in September

Monsoon season comes to an end, and it is a cooler time of year for travel. Beaches remain closed and road travel can still be tricky, but it can be a great time to visit with lower visitor numbers and incredibly lush countryside.

Myanmar in October

The beaches are open, as the monsoon season is now over. Warm temperatures, little rainfall, and very few visitors mean this is a wonderful time to visit.

Myanmar in November

In the eastern highlands, this is the coolest month, with very little rainfall, so an ideal time for trekking. Visitor numbers start to increase and accommodation fills up, so you may need to book in advance.

Myanmar in December

Beautiful weather across much of the country. As Christmas approaches, accommodation is harder to come by. It remains a good time to explore the highlands if you like to avoid the heat.

Why Choose Steppes?

Our knowledge and expertise sets us apart. So too our curiosity. A curiosity of the world and of you, and your passions. It is this that drives us to create a journey that is really bespoke to you.

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