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OVERVIEW

Bagan / Kalaw / Inle Lake / Yangon

Get active in Myanmar for a fun-filled family holiday. See iconic sites and famous cities, then add a dose of adventure for a closer look at Myanmar’s wonders. Bike, trek and kayak through the melange of diverse landscapes and connect with the culture that make Myanmar so special.

Exo Travel

TRIP HIGHLIGHTS

Tour Highlights for Family Multi-Activities Adventure
Take an immersive overnight trek

Take an immersive overnight trek

Spend two days trekking in the Shan Hills, passing ethnic hill tribe villages and staying overnight in a family house.

Bike through Bagan and Yangon

Bike through Bagan and Yangon

Discover the tranquillity of Yangon’s suburbs by bike and get a closer look at Bagan’s temples on two wheels.

Connect with Myanmar culture

Connect with Myanmar culture

Ride on a vibrant commuter train, learn to prepare traditional dishes, visit cottage industries and meet with local people.

Exo Travel

ITINERARY

Family Multi-Activities Adventure - 10 Days / 9 Nights

DAY 1 - Yangon ArrivalMealsMEALS [D]

Exo TravelTransfer: up to 1 hour

Upon arrival at Yangon International Airport we will be greeted by our guide and driver who will transfer to the city centre.

Yangon, formerly known as Rangoon, is a relatively quiet and charming city with an impressive colonial and spiritual heritage. It’s a great starting point for any Myanmar trip.

In the evening, we will head to the famous Shwedagon Pagoda, which is one of Myanmar’s holiest monuments, its central stupa soars 99 meters upwards and is covered with 60 tons of pure gold leaf. This is a fascinating monument also gives us the opportunity to witness the local pilgrims and learn about Burmese Buddhism, all the while enjoying the beautiful colors of sunset.

Dinner at a local restaurant.

Overnight in Yangon.

DAY 2 - Yangon - Wanat Chaung (Cycling)MealsMEALS [B|L]

Exo TravelTransfer by train from Yangon to Wanat Chaung: 2 hours Transfer by car from Wanat Chaung to Yangon: 90 mins Cycling distance up to: 30 km Difficulty: Easy

Our journey begins with a short transfer to Kyi Myin Daing train station for a two hour scenic train ride to Wanat Chaung, on the outskirts of Yangon. We pass small villages, colorful bustling markets and get to witness every day local life. This fun train journey will be an unforgettable experience.

Upon reaching Wanat Chaung, we’ll be fitted for our bikes and have a test ride before we head off. Leaving the station we cycle through trails and villages that never see tourists. The ride provides views of farmland and paddy fields and offers a great opportunity to interact with bemused locals.   

After a 13km ride we break for lunch at a basic local restaurant. 

After lunch it’s a short ride to the Phu Gyi Reservoir where we will stop for some great photo opportunities. Phu Gyi Reservoir is one of the main water sources for Yangon. Enjoy a leisurely ride on the 3km long bank of the reservoir and breathe in the fresh air.

We then cycle to the famous Pan Ta Pwint Taung Monastery and finish off with a ride through a forest of rubber trees before hitting the finish line back at Wanat Chaung and taking a 90 minute transfer back to Yangon. 

DAY 3 - Yangon - BaganMealsMEALS [B|L]

Exo TravelTransfer from Bagan Airport: up to 20 mins

After breakfast we transfer to the airport for the flight to Bagan and its famous temples. Upon arrival at Nyaung U airport, we head straight to our first temple, elevated and with spectacular views over the surrounding plains, this is the perfect introduction to the grandeur and scope of Bagan’s architecture. Next continue to Ananda Temple, one of the most revered temples in Bagan and quiet in the morning before all the tour buses arrive. Afterwards, we will go through Tharabar Gate and into the city of old Bagan. Just a few decades ago, this area was highly populated and home to a vibrant town. To protect the archeological remains, the town was moved south to what is present day New Bagan. Take a while to visit some of the sites in this region before stopping for lunch.

Lunch at a local restaurant.

After lunch, transfer to traditional lacquerware workshop where we can observe the production of one of Myanmar’s best-known handicrafts. Get an in-depth understanding of traditional techniques for producing the exquisite inlaid and carved boxes, trays, tea sets and other wares.  Then it is the children’s turn to paint their very own lacquer ware coasters.  One of the craftsman will assist whilst letting them bring their own creative touches to a Myanmar tradition.  After the masterpieces are completed, they will be set aside to dry, and picked up later in the evening. 

Then, take a break back at the hotel, a good time for a swim and escape the midday heat. In the early evening travel by horse cart to a place to enjoy an incredible sunset. The sunset, with views across the plains studded with chedis and temples is an unforgettable experience.

Overnight in Bagan.

DAY 4 - Bagan (Temple Cycling)MealsMEALS [B|L]

Exo TravelCycling distance up to: 27 km Difficulty: Very Easy

Early morning after breakfast, spend a half day biking around the ancient temples. (Note: due to the small size of Bagan we will not have a support car with us today. A motorbike will be accompanying the group with drinks and snacks as well as to take care of any emergency situations.)

The perfect way to explore ancient Bagan is riding through and cover the famous temples and pagodas in the Archaeological Zone. After taking a morning cycle around the Archaeological Zone, we return to hotel. This is good opportunity to cool down by taking a refreshing dip in the hotel pool.

In the afternoon, transfer to puppet workshop. The puppeteer will give a brief explanation of the puppet making process and how a block of wood is turned into a lively puppet. Late this afternoon, transfer to the jetty where a private wooden river boat is waiting. Sitting under the shade or on the open-deck, we’ll be treated to fabulous views as we cruise down the Irrawaddy River to Shwezigon Pagoda. We’ll pass by small villages on the river banks, fishermen, local boats and of course many riverside temples. The views of Bagan are spectacular and offer a different perspective from the usual sightseeing. On board, a cocktail will be served, so relax and enjoy the scenery. As the sun begins to dip low in the sky, return to dry land and transfer to a local restaurant for dinner.

Overnight in Bagan.

DAY 5 - Bagan – Heho – Kalaw – Green Hill Valley – Kalaw MealsMEALS [B|L]

Exo TravelTransfer from Heho Airport to Elephant Camp: up to 2 hours Trekking up to 2 hours Difficulty: Easy

After breakfast, transfer to Nyaung U Airport for our flight to Heho. Once we arrive to Heho we take a scenic 1 hour drive to the pretty town of Kalaw, a former British hill station. The drive takes us into the heart of the Shan State, passing pine forests, rolling hills and small towns along the way. The slightly higher elevation means the air temperature can be cooler than the rest of the country especially in the evening. From Kalaw, we will proceed to the Green Hill Valley Elephant Camp in Magwe village.

Upon arrival a specialist guide from the camp will greet and lead us to the main camp base. Enjoy a welcome drink while receiving a briefing on the day’s activities, the background of the camp and the history of elephants in Myanmar. Then embark on a short walk to the river, passing through a reforestation project set up by the camp and villagers. The elephants will likely be enjoying a refreshing swim in the stream and we have the option to join the mahouts and help bathe these gentle giants.

We then return to the main camp for lunch. There is time in the afternoon to explore more on foot with the local trekking guide or interact with the elephants. In the late afternoon say goodbye to the elephants and mahouts and transfer back to Kalaw.

Overnight in Kalaw.

Note: Due to weather and the nature of elephants this program may need to be altered and vary from the original proposal. Longer treks (from one hour to five hours) are also available.

DAY 6 - Kalaw - Naung Tayar - Trek to Saung Khar (Trekking)MealsMEALS [B|L|D]

Exo TravelTransfer from Kalaw to Naung Tayar: 1 hr 30 mins Trekking up to: 4 hours Difficulty: Easy

Today, our trekking adventure beings with a scenic two hour drive leading us to the small town of Naung Tayar. We will meet with our trekking team and set off on foot. You will immediately notice how different the scenery is from middle Burma and the cooler temperatures are more suited for walking.

After lunch at local family house in traditional style, we continue our scenic trek. On the way, we will have plenty of opportunities to stop for photos and interact with the friendly local people. We reach our overnight stop village of Saung Khar in the evening. Tonight we stay in a house with a local family which gives plenty of opportunity for more interaction and learning about the local people’s way of life.

Overnight in Saung Khar Village.

DAY 7 - Saung Khar – Tharyar Gone (Trekking) – Samkar MealsMEALS [B|L|D]

Exo TravelTransfer by boat to Samkar: 10 mins Trekking up to 4 hours Difficulty: Easy

Departing Saung Khar early, we bid farewell to our host family and continue trekking towards Inle Lake. This morning trek offers great views of a bamboo forest, valley and overview of the villages. Our first stop is Naung Mon old Monastery and village where we learn about monastic life in Myanmar and further insight into day to day village life. The monastery also serves as a community center and is an important part of rural Burmese life.

Continuing onwards and downwards we descend to our final destination of Tharyar Gone, a short walk from the shores of the beautiful and serene Inle Lake.

Depending on on progress made, lunch will be served either in a village on route or at a restaurant in Tharyar Gone. This also lends the opportunity to observe the making of local rice wine.

If time permits, we visit the Thar Khaung Pagoda Complex before transferring by long tail boat to Samkar located on the opposite shore.

Dinner and overnight at Samkar.

DAY 8 - Samkar - Nampan (Cycling) - Inle SightseeingMealsMEALS [B|L]

Exo TravelCycling distance up to: 36 km Difficulty: Easy

After breakfast, our guide will give us a short briefing for today’s ride from Samkar to Nampan.

It’s an enjoyable scenic ride with mountain views to our right and lake views to the left. On our ride we’ll not only see farms of maize but also the cultivation of rice. We’ll arrive at Nampan market after an easy 36km ride. From here, we will take a traditional long tail boat and head to Inle Lake, one of Myanmar’s most spectacular sights. Across the lake we pass through villages with stilted houses and floating gardens built up from strips of water hyacinth and mud and anchored to the bottom with bamboo poles.

Stopping for lunch around midday we have the opportunity to taste delicious traditional Inthar dishes while soaking in the views of the lake and its surroundings.

After lunch, we make our way to Phaung Daw Oo Pagoda, the lake’s main sanctuary, which contains 5 sacred Buddha images and houses royal barges used during the pagoda’s annual festival. Proceeding to the village of Inpawkhone to observe the traditional silk weaving techniques of the Inthar people. Inpawkhone is also renowned for weaving with the stems of lotus flowers, a time consuming process that results in high quality materials famous throughout the country. We also visit a cheroot factory where local Burmese cigars are rolled by hand.

Overnight on Inle Lake.

DAY 9 - Inle (Cooking Class) - Ywama (Kayaking)MealsMEALS [B|L]

Exo TravelTransfer by Boat to Ywama Village: 30-60 mins Kayaking up to 1.5 hrs Walking up to 1.5 hrs Difficulty: Easy

We’ll start today with a visit to the morning market, which rotates locations on a daily basis. (Note: there are no markets on full moon or dark moon days) This daily market attracts people from all over the lake’s shores to buy and sell their wares- if we’re lucky we may see Pa-Oh, Inthar and Shan people in their traditional outfits. Wander amid the stalls where our guide will explain the local produce and goods for sale.

We continue to a traditional Inthar House where we will spend time preparing the dishes with our host family. It’s a unique chance to spend time with the locals and learn about their cuisine and culture. Together we’ll prepare local delights including Inle Style Tomato Salad and other Inthar dishes. Once the hard work and preparation is completed lunch will be served on a low table whilst sitting on the floor local style.

After lunch we transfer to one of the main lakeside villages. Ywama is an accurate glimpse at the everyday lives of the local people, a lifestyle that has remained relatively unchanged for generations. 

It’s then time to burn off some calories. Our kayaks will be waiting at a local home in the village. Our guide will provide instructions and we will take a test ride before entering Ywama’s web of canals. Although Inle Lake is the 2nd largest lake in Myanmar, the water is shallow, allowing the local tribes to build entire communities on stilts ‘floating’ over the water. Paddle through these small waterways, under and around traditional floating homes. Kayaking has only recently been introduced to Inle, so be prepared for some odd looks from the locals.

After about half an hour we disembark for a trek through a lively local village. This trek show cases local workshops such as tofu making, blacksmiths, and goldsmiths. There may even be a chance to learn a little about the traditional medicine of the Inthar people. After exploring the village for around an hour we head back to the kayaks. Continue paddling through the small channels of the village. We stop at a local house for a cup of tea and sample some traditional snacks. Then, floating through the waterways of Ywama the trip concludes at the same local house where our journey began. We then get back to our hotel.Dinner at hotel is recommended.Overnight on Inle Lake.

DAY 10 - Heho - YangonMealsMEALS [B]

Exo TravelTransfer from Nyaung Shwe to Heho: up to one hour

This morning is free at your leisure before transferring to Heho airport for our flight to Yangon.

Time permitting, we can visit Bogyoke Market, formerly known as Scott’s Market, where we can browse through the wide selection of Myanmar handicrafts and other goods.

(Note: closed on Mondays and public holidays).

Afterwards, transfer back to Yangon international airport for our departure flight.

Exo Travel

IMPORTANT INFORMATION

Our services include:

  • Vehicles: (varies based on local conditions and vehicle sizes available). Private air-conditioned vehicle for transfer and back up as itinerary.
  • Accommodation as listed above with Twin/Double sharing included breakfast
  • Bike, helmet and Kayak rental
  • Plenty of water provided throughout the day while cycling, trekking and Kayaking
  • Snacks and local fruits
  • English Speaking Station Guide in each station
  • 1 local assistant for biking days in Yangon, Bagan and Inle for 11 cyclists and above
  • Mechanic for biking days in Bagan for 7 cyclists and above
  • 1 first aid kit per guide
  • Meals as mentioned in the itinerary (B – Breakfast, L – Lunch, D – Dinner)

Our services don’t include:

  • Vehicles: (varies based on local conditions and vehicle sizes available). Private air-conditioned vehicle for transfer and back up as itinerary.
  • Accommodation as listed above with Twin/Double sharing included breakfast
  • Bike, helmet and Kayak rental
  • Plenty of water provided throughout the day while cycling, trekking and Kayaking
  • Snacks and local fruits
  • English Speaking Station Guide in each station
  • 1 local assistant for biking days in Yangon, Bagan and Inle for 11 cyclists and above
  • Mechanic for biking days in Bagan for 7 cyclists and above
  • 1 first aid kit per guide
  • Meals as mentioned in the itinerary (B – Breakfast, L – Lunch, D – Dinner)
  • We strongly recommend the purchase of travel insurance (covering emergency medical evacuation) for trips.
  • Prices are valid 30 days from date of offer. Past this date price and conditions may be readjusted.
  • The cost of air tickets is subject to change without prior notice by the airlines.
  • Reservations during peak times (Christmas, New Year, Myanmar New Year (Thingyan Water Festival), etc.,) may be subject to supplementary charges.
  • Rooms at hotels are available only from 1400 on arrival day till 1200 on departure date. A supplement will be added if early check-in or late check-out is desired.
  • Please note that all the above services & tours have yet to be booked, they are proposed for your information only and we will not make any reservations before we receive your confirmation to do so.
  • If one or some proposed service(s) is (are) not available at the moment of booking, we will try to find other possibilities/options or other similar service(s) in order to avoid changes to the program. 
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