Your choice of 3 Select & Mix experiences (no extra cost 3 experiences already included in the price of your holiday):
A. Yangon: Indulge in a high tea at the stunning Governor’s Residence Hotel and immerse yourself in the colonial times atmosphere (day 2)
Take a break and indulge in High Tea at a stunning colonial times historic site. This classic style hotel is a welcome retreat from the heat and constant buzz of the city. Relax in the casual yet elegant café while enjoying a full service High Tea of either Burmese or Western treats.
B. Yangon: receive a monk’s blessing and partake in Myanmar’s most beautiful ceremony as you join local worshipers to illuminate thousands of oil lamps at the base of Shwedagon Pagoda (day 1 or 2 late afternoon)
Partake in one of Myanmar’s most beautiful ceremonies as you join local worshippers and monks to illuminate hundreds of small oil lamps at the base of Shwedagon Pagoda. Having walked around and learned about the importance of this glittering monument you will return to a small pavilion and be given a candle. Led by a monk, light these delicate lamps one by one creating a line of wavering flames which illuminate the base of Shwedagon. Step back and soak in the serene atmosphere created with local worshippers saying their evening prayers in the glow of the lamps.
C. Yangon: Join the locals for a Tai Chi session followed by a traditional breakfast (day 2 or 3 early morning)
Start the morning the local way- with a dose of exercise in the park. Wake up early and transfer to Mahabandoola Park or Kandawgyi Park where every morning Yangon residents gather to walk, do calisthenics, and practice traditional martial arts. You’ll be met by an English-speaking Tai Chi instructor who will guide you through a series of slow graceful movements alongside the Myanmar practitioners. Enjoy the relaxing motions in this unique setting for around one hour. Continue your ‘local’ morning by heading to a nearby tea shop for a cup of tea or coffee and a bowl of noodles to re-energize for the day.
D. Bagan: Explore Bagan on a bike or E-bike tour (day 4 afternoon)
While Bagan’s monuments are easily visited by car, a biking trip provides a different perspective with the chance to criss-cross smaller laneways pass through villages and stop as often as you like. Set off with a local bike or e-bike for a half-day excursion. Pedal with your guide through the central part of Bagan with frequent stops on the way. Although there will be plenty of time to see religious monuments, it is the colourful local markets and village visits that are the highlight of the day. On the bikes, traveling slowly, you get to not just see the lives of the local people but to feel part of their daily activities: farmers on their way to the fields, children rushing home after a day at school and artisans putting the finishing touches on their handicrafts. Be sure to have your camera batteries fully-charged as there are plenty of opportunities for photos on this exciting biking excursion in Bagan.
Distance biked will vary but is a minimum of 10km maximum of 20km.
E. Bagan: Cooking class with local family
Your guide and driver will pick you up to start your Bagan excursion. It’s off to the vibrant Nyaung Oo Market where the locals come to trade fresh produce and other goods daily.
You’re invited to a local home to join for Myanmar traditional cooking experience. Meet the friendly family who awaits in the humble kitchen while preparing an array of ingredients for today’s cooking. Your host will briefly explain to you the local vegetables and herbs hand picked in the garden or freshly brought back from the morning market. Some products exclusively found in the Bagan region will probably be on the menu today. While the hosts cooks up a storm in the kitchen you will find some time to share cooking methods, stories, and laughs. After a lesson in the traditional cooking methods it is time to enjoy the meal together in the home garden. Explore the authentic tastes of Burmese cuisine in a cosy atmosphere. Don’t be afraid to finish your plate – it is the Burmese way of showing appreciation for your meal!
F. Bagan: Take a sunset boat cruise with cocktail & snacks (day 3 late afternoon)
You will be driven late in the afternoon to the jetty where your private wooden river boat awaits. Sitting either under the shade or on the open deck you’ll be treated to fabulous views as you cruise down the Irrrawaddy River. The views of bagan from the river are particularly spectacular. As you finish your evening cocktail and the sun slowly sinks from view you will prepare to disembark before being driven back to your hotel.
G. Mandalay: Afternoon bike tour to Ava and the iconic U Bein Bridge on time for sunset (day 5 afternoon)
Departing from the hotel in the early afternoon you’ll be transferred out of the hustle and bustle of the city to the biking starting point. The ride starts out by passing through farms and villages where instead of fighting traffic you will be encountering friendly, smiling locals and farm animals wandering around the roadside. You’ll continue along shady paths through Ava also known as Inwa getting a bit of a rest as we cross the small canal by ferry boat. From here you’ll continue towards U Bein Bridge. One of Myanmar’s most iconic sites, U Bein is a teak bridge spanning more than 2 kilometers over Taung Ta Man Lake. Watching the sunset from the lake shores is a memorable way to end the day. After soaking in the views drive back to Mandalay arriving around 19.00.
This biking trip is easy-moderate: total cycling distance is 20 km on flat mostly sealed roads but at times a bit bumpy; recommended to wear long shorts/three-quarter length pants and t-shirts and closed shoes.
H. Mandalay: Take a cooking class at Alice & Su Kitchen (day 6 morning)
Your morning will begin with a visit to the sprawling morning market near the town centre. With your guide, explore the seemingly endless stalls filled with fruits vegetables meats spices and an entire range of other items. Stop for a cup of tea to watch and observe the activities of the tea shop where local residents come to socialize and discuss business. Then continue to a small restaurant where your host chef is waiting to welcome you. Over the next 1.5 hours you will learn about the traditions of Myanmar food and its preparation. A combination of hands-on and demonstration will provide you with a great overview of the techniques tools such as mortar and pestle and key ingredients to making local dishes such as salads and curries. At the end of the class sit down to a delicious lunch which you have helped prepare.
Please notify in advance if any allergies or dietary requirements
I. Inle Lake: Kayak on Lake Inle passing by small villages on stilts vegetable farms and one leg rowing fishermen (day 8 morning)
Embark on a scenic boat ride from your hotel until you reach the starting point (around 45 min depending on your hotel location) of your kayaking adventure. Equipped with life jackets, you will start kayaking southbound along the narrow waterways of the lake. Feel close to nature as you move on tranquil waters flanked by high mountains passing by small villages on stilts, vegetable farms, and one leg rowing fishermen that have become the symbol of the local Intha tribe. Paddling a kayak through the beautiful natural environment is definitely the best way to be close to it.
Note: 4 Kayaks available for max. 8 persons. Take extra clothes to change. Don’t forget sunscreen and a hat.
J. Share lunch with a local Intha family in their stilt house (day 8)
Your destination for today’s lunch is a traditional stilt house situated on the outskirts of a charming village by the lake. Seat on soft pillows – handmade here on the lake – around the low tables like a real Burmese. The traditional decor of this beautiful Burmese structure will give you a glance at the lifestyle of the Intha the main ethnic group of Inle Lake. Your hosts will treat you to a mouth-watering feast prepared according to their family recipes. If you’re feeling curious feel free to make a detour to the kitchen and help the cooks give the final touch to the Intha dishes. Quality Shan wine, local beer, or soft drinks will accompany this lovely meal.