MYANMAR FOR CONNOISEURS

9 DAYS LUXURY TOUR WITH STRAND CRUISE

A wonderful journey in a wonderful country. This trip is a relaxed paced cultural exploration to old and new Burma.

Enjoy the best that Myanmar has to offer on this luxury tour. Every detail of this tour has been tailored to suit the needs of the most discerning travelers, from the selection of elegant hotels and fine dining experiences to unforgettable sights and moments that you will cherish for years to come. Highlights include a journey aboard the luxurious Strand Cruise. The cruise journeys along the mighty Irrawaddy River from the ancient city of Bagan to Mandalay, the cultural capital of Myanmar.

PRICE:From
DURATION:9 Days / 8 Nights
TOUR STYLE:Luxury, River Cruise, Culture & Heritage
DESTINATIONS:Yangon, Bagan, Mandalay, Inle Lake,
TOUR CODE:
DEPARTURES:Daily (Private Departures)
STARTS:In Yangon
ENDS:In Yangon
Enquire NowRequest Full Itinerary

At a glance

Highlights

  • Colonial Yangon & Swedagon Pagoda
  • Temples of Ancient Kingdom of Bagan
  • Mesmerizing Inle Lake, minorities & boat trips

Itinerary in Brief

  • DAY 1: Arrival. Yangon Exploration
  • DAY 2: From Yangon to Bagan
  • DAY 3: Majesty of Bagan
  • DAY 4: The Waves of the rive
  • DAY 5: The Royal Capitals
  • DAY 6: From Mandalay to Inle Lake
  • DAY 7: Inle Lake & Indein
  • DAY 8: From Inle Lake to Yangon
  • DAY 9: Yangon Departure

with beach extension

  • DAY 8: Flight Inle Lake to Ngapali Beach
  • DAYS 9-10: Ngapali Beach
  • DAY 11: Flight to Yangon and connect to your next flight

Tour Details

Upon arrival at Yangon International Airport you will be welcomed by Discovery DMC guide who will assist you through necessary immigration procedures. Transfer to your hotel for check-in and after some rest and freshen up we drive to the old center of the city where we start today’s explorations with a walking tour. Our history specialist guide will lead you through symmetrically laid out colonial administrative quarter and share intriguing stories behind some of the most remarkable heritage buildings, many of them dating back to the late 19th – early 20th century. Along our route you will see old book merchants, traditional food stalls and various kinds of shops and entrepreneurs that all combined make Yangon’s downtown a very vibrant and dynamic place.
Stop for an afternoon tea break at the stylish Rangoon Tea House – a contemporary take on classic Rangoon tea venues – a great place to sample traditional Burmese dishes in a lively and cozy atmosphere.
Next we visit some of the well-known art galleries where you will have a chance to meet with local artists who will share their stories about recent developments in Yangon’s emerging arts scene.
After lunch enjoy foot massage at the best Spa in the city to relax from the morning walk and prepare yourself for the most fascinating experience of the day as we complete today’s discoveries with a visit to Shwedagon Pagoda. The iconic symbol of the whole country, this giant gold gleaming stupa rises high into the sky and is center to the most revered Buddhist complex in Myanmar. Views of the golden dome are most enchanting by the sundown when hundreds of worshippers fill the platform to pay respect and meditate quietly after the busy day, with tickling of thousands of tiny golden bells and scent of incense sticks and candles filling the air.
Tonight a welcome dinner will be served for you at the hotel – luxuriate in a relaxing atmosphere of a colonial teakwood mansion savouring selected local delicacies and cooling cocktails.

Overnight Stay: The Governor’s Residence Hotel.

After breakfast at the hotel transfer to domestic airport for the flight to Bagan. Upon arrival you will be welcomed by the team members of the Strand Cruise.
Your journey through the golden land today begins with a freshly made welcome meal in the tranquil shaded gardens of the oldest lacquerware house in Bagan. Lacquerware is a traditional art that began when the Pagodas of Bagan were first being built in the 11th century and is still practiced today. We will then move onto the nearby Shwezigon Pagoda, famous for it’s gold leaf décor, and the Ananda temple, famous as being one of the four great temples of Bagan and one of most exquisite temples in Myanmar. A short scenic transfer takes us to The Strand Cruise for check-in and to meet fellow passengers over lunch. Once settled into your cabin, meet your fellow passengers for lunch prepared by the Chef of the cruise.
During the afternoon, we will continue our exploration of the Bagan Heritage Trail, including the beautiful Sulamani and Gubyaukgyi temples. As the sun sets, admire Bagan’s magnificent sights over the Ayeyarwaddy river from the ship’s sundeck, sipping one of the Strand Hotel’s signature cocktails, before joining your fellow travellers at the long tables of our fine dining restaurant for a dinner of sharing tapas, followed by a menu of gourmet cuisine and fine wines. Additional optional activities today include a guided visit by private car around Bagan or tickets to an evening performance of the nearby contemporary cultural show.

Meals Included: Breakfast,Lunch and Dinner

Overnight Stay: Strand Cruise

Enjoy a leisurely breakfast this morning as we cruise downriver to the glass monastery of Tant Kyi Taung. Once ashore at the Tant Kyi river bank, a short transfer will take you to the monastery to witness the amazing view of Bagan from the hilltop, before descending the hill where a surprise awaits. By mid-morning, we begin cruising upstream toward Mandalay. The passing landscapes and typical Ayeyarwaddy villages have inspired many authors and artists throughout history, including Rudyard Kipling.
As we cruise, lunch is o ered either bu et style in the air-conditioned restaurant or al fresco at the more informal sundeck lounge while enjoying the beautiful landscape passing by.
We will spend the afternoon drifting on the gentle waters of the Ayeyarwaddy, relax on the sun deck and enjoy the many activities and workshops arranged by our experienced crew, before enjoying a traditional Strand afternoon tea. As night falls, our ship will moor on a remote and wild section of the river. Surrounded only by the soft whispering of nature, our Captain invites you to a cocktail and dinner, followed by a traditional cultural performance on board. Night owls can linger in the bar over a glass of fine wine or single malt whiskey and recreate the golden age of the Strand as a meeting place for explorers and raconteurs.
Should you wish, we can offer an additional activity options today:

OPTIONAL
Sunrise Hot Air Balloon Flight Over Bagan
Imagine…floating gently above thousand years old pagodas and the mighty Ayeyarwaddy River, as the sun rises slowly from the horizon over the misty fields and temples. The magic of Bagan has inspired visitors to Myanmar for centuries. One of the most remarkable sights in Asia, where ancient temples dot the landscape as far as the eye can see. Truly an unforgettable experience not to be missed on a journey to Myanmar.
(Flights operate between October & March)

  • Meals Included: Breakfast,Lunch and Dinner
  • Overnight Stay: On board The Strand Cruise

Enjoy a late breakfast this morning as the ship will cruise until mid-afternoon when we arrive in Mingun. Throughout the morning, relax by the pool with a book or participate in the many activities and workshops prepared by the crew as we pass through the wonderful countryside. After a generous buffet lunch of international and Asian cuisine taken on the sun deck or in the restaurant, as you prefer, we will stop in Mingun, at the foot of the unfinished pagoda, one of the largest pagodas ever constructed in the history of Myanmar. We will visit the pagoda by
a popular local means of transportation, the Tuk Tuk. The pagoda is home to the magnificent Mingun Bell, claimed to be the largest uncracked hanging bell in the world. We will also visit Hsinbyume Pagoda, an impressive stupa that rises in seven curved whitewashed terraces representing the seven mountain ranges around Mt Meru, the mountain at the center of the Buddhist universe. Once back onboard, relax and prepare yourself for a fabulous feast on the sand banks opposite Mingun (weather permitting) accompanied by local entertainment.

  • Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • Overnight Stay: On board The Strand Cruise.

We begin our day with a freshly prepared breakfast while surveying the next and most awaited stop, Mandalay, the second-largest city and the last royal capital of Myanmar. Our first stop ashore is the U Bein Bridge, a crossing that spans the Taungthaman Lake near Amarapura, another royal capital city of the past. The bridge is believed to be the oldest and longest teakwood bridge in the world.
We continue the Mandalay Heritage trail by visiting the Mahamui Buddha temple. Legend has it that the great Buddha himself visited the city of Arakan in 554 and that King Sanda Thuriya ordered a likeness of Buddha’s face to be created and placed in the temple. From here we visit the Shwe In Bin monastery before rejoining the Strand Cruise.
After lunch on board as we cruise, we will explore Sagaing, the most important religious center in Myanmar, famous for its many hundreds of white, silver and gold pagodas and monasteries. A traditional local truck will collect passengers from the ship and bring them to the top terrace of the Soon U Ponya Shin pagoda to enjoy a stunning vista of Mandalay surrounded by its ancient royal capitals linked by the golden thread of the Ayeyarwaddy River. During the afternoon we will set sail again towards Ava, the ancient imperial capital of successive Burmese kingdoms from the 14th to 19th centuries. Horse carts awaits to transport you for a delightful ride through the naturally preserved Ava landscape and key landmarks. We will have an exclusive mooring overnight at Ava next to a remarkable temple, allowing Strand Cruise passengers access to the site after the crowds have departed in the late afternoon until the following morning.
As we reach the end of the day, a special Champagne Sunset Cocktail will be held overlooking the Ava bridge and Sagaing Hill as they are bathed in the evening glow, before a fabulous Shan style farewell dinner on board complete with traditional local performances.
Should you wish to continue exploring the city on your own, additional optional activities today include a guided visit by private car.

  • Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • Overnight Stay :On board The Strand Cruise.

This morning the monks of Ava will join us for a very special farewell before breakfast and our final cruise towards the Gaw Wein jetty in Mandalay. There you will be picked up by Discovery DMC station guide who will see you to the airport for your flight to Heho, a quiet transit town with one of the few airport links in the beautiful hills of Shan State. We take a 1-hour drive to Inle Lake that descends through the valley with views of the Shan mountains and rice paddy fields. After checking into the hotel, we embark on afternoon explorations of Inle Lake, populated with floating islands and gardens made from the naturally tangled roots of water hyacinth plants and bamboo poles. Delight in the picturesque sights of Intha fishermen who balance and row with one leg, a technique indigenous to the Inn Thar minority group who do this only on Inle Lake. Visit the Ywama village known for its silver smith traditions and Phaungdaw Oo Pagoda, home of some of the country’s most sacred Buddha statues covered in gold leaf by devout followers.
Tonight dinner will be served on a private deck over a little island in front of your hotel. Enjoy the most delicious fusion cuisine with a glass of wine or your favorite cocktail.
Should you desire, additional options today include private cooking class by a master chef and/or a visit to a local vineyard.

OPTIONAL
Shan cooking class at Viewpoint Restaurant
Duration: Approx. 3,5 hours
You will visit the local market with our head chef to purchase the food to be prepared for a special gourmet luncheon. The chef explains how to shop, shares some tricks in traditional bargaining and shows the right ingredients being purchased. Once shopping is done you will proceed to the kitchen, where the chef begins the basic lessons and guides you through the process of preparation of the meal. Enjoy your cooking creations after all is ready.

OPTIONAL
Wine tasting at the Red Mountain Vineyard Estate
Duration: 1,5 – 2,5 hours
Visit Myanmar’s premier vineyard, on the slopes of mountain range rising east of the Inle lake. Sample the produce whilst enjoying enchanting views over the lake. The Red Mountain Estates is locally owned vineyard ran by French winemaker who has been passionately making wine in Myanmar for the last 10 years.

  • Meals Included:Breakfast and Lunch
  • Overnight Stay  Inle Princess Resort.

After breakfast at the hotel we continue today’s explorations of Inle Lake and surroundings. Our boat journey follows the currents of a small river as we reach the Pa O village of Indein, a site that makes us feel as if we’ve stepped through a forgotten portal in time. To access the Indein archeological site we walk through verdant bamboo groves that open up to a field covered with the ancient pagodas constructed over 1,000 years ago – truly an amazing sight and a highlight of the lake.
Enjoy today’s lunch on a floating boat – our on-board chef will prepare your gourmet lunch while you take in the breathtaking scenery and savour exquisite dining, an experience you will never forget.
Rest of the day is for lake explorations, you will learn how the floating islands are shaped and tended, stop at Inn Phaw Khone village to learn how local handmade silks, linens and lotus fabrics are crafted. At Nampan village local craftsmen will show us how Burmese cigars, or “cheroots,” are traditionally packed and rolled. If time permits we can visit the Burmese cats at Inn Thar Heritage House and end our day with magnificent sunset canoe ride with boatmen who gracefully navigate and row perched on one leg. Return to your hotel with the sundown.
Should you wish, we can arrange an optional sunrise balloon flight for you:

OPTIONAL
Sunrise Hot Air Balloon Flight Over Inle Lake
As our balloon gains height, a wonderful panorama unfolds in front of you. The flight will reveal to the lake, mountains, marshes and stilt-house villages. Driven by the wind, you will see the boats of the lake, canoes transporting visitors along the main canal from Nyaungshwe on a day’s expedition, or Intha fishermen majestically rowing their flat-bottomed skiffs with one leg as they cast their nets.
(Flights operate between October & March)

  • Meals Included: Breakfast and Lunch
  • Overnight Stay: Inle Princess Resort

Enjoy breakfast at the hotel and after that transfer to Heho airport for your flight to Yangon. Upon arrival you will be welcomed by Discovery DMC guide who will take you to the hotel for check-in. After some freshening up we drive down to the city center to bustling Bogyoke (Scotts) Market, where hundreds of gemstone, handicrafts, art, clothes and food stores are tucked in a maze of color. If you are curious and dare enough to find out what awaits you in the future don’t miss a chance to visit a famous Myanmar fortune teller and palmist U San Zarni Bo. We then make a stop at Yangon’s best antiques shop, Augustine’s, displaying a big variety of good quality old and genuine objects. It is a family run gallery that throughout it’s almost 40 years of business gained considerable expertise in Burmese antiques.
With the sundown you will be treated to great Indochinese and French fusion cuisine delights at one of the best restaurant in Myanmar, Le Planteur situated in a quiet tropical garden on the bank of Inya Lake.

  • Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
  • Overnight Stay: at the Governor’s Residence Hotel

Enjoy breakfast at the hotel and then transfer to Heho airport for a short flight to the town of Thandwe (the British called it Sandoway) that used to be a trading seaport of historical significance for hundreds of years in the Rakhine State. Nestled within gentle valleys at the mouth of the Sandoway River, Thandwe was reputed to have once been the capital of an ancient Arakan empire. Located 10 km north of Ngapali, it offers glimpses into British colonial times buildings of colonial design and invokes a sense of frozen time.
Ngapali Beach is a tropical paradise of pristine sand, clear blue waters and groves of picturesque coconut palms. Over 10 km of white sand beach runs along the Bay of Bengal, with a smattering of only a dozen or so resorts to create a sense of seclusion and hidden discovery. The limited development and small number of visitors means the beach never feels crowded, a dream come true for lovers of the sun, sea and sand. Besides the usual sunbathing and swimming, leisure activities include snorkeling, sailing, scenic walks and bike trips. Far away from tourist crowds, Ngapali Beach is still a truly undiscovered paradise. The long beach is dotted with charming boutique style resorts built in local materials, the architecture blending harmoniously with the natural surroundings. There are no high rises, no noisy roads, no booming discotheques, no jet-skis and no packed rows of oiled bodies baking in the sun. The stretch of white sand, natural beauty of the blue sea, swaying palm trees and quiet privacy are guaranteed ingredients of an exquisite beach holiday.
Upon arrival in Thandwe transfer to your hotel in Ngapali and free at leisure on the beach for the rest of the day.

  • Meals Included: Breakfast
  • Overnight Stay : Sandoway Resort.

Enjoy breakfast at your resort and transfer to Thandwe airport for your flight to Yangon. Upon arrival you will be welcomed by Discovery DMC guide who will take you to the hotel for check-in. After some freshening up we drive down to the city center to bustling Bogyoke (Scotts) Market, where hundreds of gemstone, handicrafts, art, clothes and food stores are tucked in a maze of color. If you are curious and dare enough to find out what awaits you in the future don’t miss a chance to visit a famous Myanmar fortune teller and palmist U San Zarni Bo. We then make a stop at Yangon’s best antiques shop, Augustine’s, displaying a big variety of good quality old and genuine objects. It is a family run gallery that throughout it’s almost 40 years of business gained considerable expertise in Burmese antiques.
With the sundown you will be treated to great Indochinese and French fusion cuisine delights at one of the best restaurant in Myanmar, Le Planteur situated in a quiet tropical garden on the bank of Inya Lake.

Meals Included: Breakfast

Overnight Stay: Governor’s Residence Hotel

Breakfast at the hotel and transfer to Yangon airport for your connecting international flight. The car and driver will be at your disposal until departure.

Meals Included : Breakfast

Yangon

jasmine palace hotel deluxe room yangon hotels

JASMINE PALACE HOTEL

Comfort

Modern city hotel in Yangon with excellent location. Jasmine Palace Hotel presents good value and high standards is the perfect base for exploring the city’s highlights.

Bagan

Bagan Umbra Hotel

HOTEL UMBRA

Comfort

Charming garden resort near Old Bagan. Hotel Umbra is one of our favourite hotels in Bagan. It was recently renovated and reconstructed. Particularly the Grand deluxe rooms are nice with modern and spacious facilities.

Inle Lake

RED CANAL HOTEL

Comfort

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Mandalay

RED CANAL HOTEL

Comfort

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What's Included

  • Private tours and transfers with air-conditioned vehicles as specified in our itinerary
  • 2 bottles of water & 2 refreshing towels per passenger per day
  • Lodging with breakfast as specified in the itinerary
  • Luggage handling fees at airports
  • Entrance fees or zone fees
  • English speaking guide(other languages guide can be provide with additional charges)

What's Not Included

  • Visa to Myanmar (note that pre-arranged visa is required for tourists)
  • All entrance fees or zone fees
  • Domestic Airfares (always quoted and mentioned separately from tour package price)
  • International air fares
  • Meals or any other item not described in the itinerary
  • Peak season surcharges & Compulsory dinners during Xmas & New Year’s
  • Early check-in, late check-out. Normal check out time from hotels in Myanmar is 11am or 12 o’clock noon
  • Drinks during meals, hotel extras and expenses of personal nature
  • Camera & video fees. Some of the sites visited may ask small fees for photographing and video recording.

Tips & gratuities

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WHAT OUR CLIENTS ARE SAYING

About This Tour

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The program worked out just great with fantastic guides and drivers, always on time and so friendly and knowledgeable. I will definitely recommend this to friends and colleagues who want to travel to Myanmar and are limited on time.

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