Myanmar Family Adventure

tours / Cycling

Myanmar Family Adventure information and booking

from
$2260
  • Duration
    9 days
    Days
  • Group size
    4-16
    Persons
  • Difficulty
    Adventure touring
Check prices & availability

Schedule Details

Equipment Required
There is no specialized equipment required for this trip. A comprehensive list of recommended gear will be provided on booking.

Highlights

  • Wander through one of the most fascinating cities in Southeast Asia - Yangon
  • Discover local markets and immerse yourself in the local culture
  • Enjoy a full day excursion on Inle Lake
  • Climb the stairs to the summit of Mt Popa
  • Explore the stunning temples of Bagan

Tour description provided by World Expeditions

Our thrilling adventure begins in Yangon, its impressive colonial and spiritual heritage makes it one of the most fascinating cities in Southeast Asia. We visit the Shwedagon Pagoda, the Mahawizaya temple, the Bogyoke Market, Kandawgyi Park in central Yangon and lastly a sunset cruise on the Yangon River. Next we explore the gateway town to Inle Lake, Nyaung Shwe, by bike visiting the local market, temples and nunneries before cycling the scenic rural roads to the lake's eastern shores. We leave the bikes behind and take to the water by boat for a full day excursion on Inle Lake, stopping at villages, a monastery, a pagoda and at the village of Inpawkhone to observe the traditional silk weaving techniques of the Innthar people. An exciting trishaw ride through the streets of Nyaung Shwe takes us to the bustling canal to watch baskets laden with produce transferred from boats to trucks and bikes. Next on our agenda is Mt Popa, an extinct volcano standing 1518 metres high. Learn about nats and nat worship as you climb the stairs to the top (the climb is optional) with your local guide. The view over the Myingyan Plain from the top of the volcanic peak is impressive. Onto Bagan to discover its many temples and monasteries, including Kyan Sitthar Cave temple where we walk through the tunnel-like corridors by flashlight to view the fading paintings on the ceiling. We take an Irrawaddy river cruise to see the fabulous scenes of life on the water: fishermen, riverside villages and views of the Bagan temples. Lastly we visit Nyaung U Market, where amid the produce stalls are local toys and other handicrafts that the kids will enjoy. Our trip concludes with a return flight to Yangon.

What's included

  • 8 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 1 dinners
  • Comfortable accommodation
  • Airport transfers (day 1 & 9 only)
  • Internal flights yangon/heho/nyaung u/yangon valued at usd$363
  • Private air conditioned vehicles
  • Sightseeing and entry fees as per itinerary
  • Kids activity book (1 per child)
  • 1 longyi per person at bogyoke market
  • Expert bilingual guide
  • Medical kit

Itinerary

Day 1 Join Yangon
If you are arriving on day 1 you will meet at the airport and transferred to the group hotel. Each child will receive an activity book on arrival that contains fun yet educational games to keep them entertained during their stay. Yangon, formerly known as Rangoon, is a relatively quiet and charming city. Its impressive colonial and spiritual heritage makes it one of the most fascinating cities in Southeast Asia. Tonight we enjoy a welcome dinner at Monsoon Restaurant.
Day 2 City tour of Yangon
After breakfast, visit through the streets of Yangon to Shwedagon Pagoda. The kids will love visiting around the pagoda as there are many fun activities and interesting things to learn. They can make wishes by tossing coins into bowls, make an offering at their ‘animal’ post and see the unusual ‘neon’ Buddhas in the prayer hall. After visiting the pagoda, take the eastern stairs to the ‘monks market’ where everything from monk robes to alms bowls are sold - it's a colorful spectacle. Next stop is Mahawizaya temple where there is a chance to feed the fish. Feeding temple fish is a way that the local Buddhist make merit, but great fun for kids who can see the giant fish swim to the surface for a bite of food. From here our car will transfer us to downtown and the fabulous Bogyoke Market. Also known as Scott Market, the building is filled with stalls selling local handicrafts such as marionettes, laquerware and jewelry. To get your family into the local spirit, purchase a traditional longyi (the sarong-like skirt worn by men and women) for everyone and try thanaka (the local yellow paste used as suncream). Take a family photo- a perfect snapshop memory of your day in Yangon. Around midday we’ll head to Kandawgyi Park in central Yangon. With its large lake, views of Shwedagon, replica royal barge and shady walking paths this park is popular with local families and a great place to relax and enjoy lunch. Explore and play in the park or relax by the waterside and enjoy the views. Mid afternoon we return downtown and cool off with an ice cream at Shwe Pa Zun (at you own expense) a popular sweet shop which sells an array of homemade treats. The sweets are delicious and it is a great place to meet friendly local families. From here we take a short ride to the boat jetty for a sunset cruise on the Yangon River. Enjoy snacks as you cruise along the water, past the cityscape and villages on the opposite side of the river. Kids can feed the seagulls while parents can relax with a beer or local rum sour (free flow!) and enjoy the scenery. PLEASE NOTE: The Shwedagon pagoda will be under maintenance between Sept. 2014 - Feb. 2015. It will have partial scaffold but still can be viewed.
Day 3 Fly to Heho, transfer to Nyang Shwe
After breakfast, transfer to the airport for your flight to Heho. Upon arrival at the Heho airport your car will be waiting to transfer you to Nyaung Shwe, the gateway to Inle Lake. In Nyaung Shwe we’ll go first to the hotel to drop the bags off (early check in subject to availability) and go for a bike ride around this pleasant town. Explore the local market, temples and nunneries in town then venture 5 kilometres out of the town centre toward the lake’s eastern shores. There are many fields in this area and depending on the time of year you will be able to see farmers planting or harvesting their crops (sugar cane, rice, cabbages and corn are some of the most common items grown here). Stop for a visit at Red Mountain Estate, one of Myanmar’s best vineyards where you may want to enjoy a wine tasting while enjoying the views at the open air bar. The grapes are imported from France and planted and harvested by local Pa-Oh people. The setting is stunning with fabulous views over the lake and the Shan Mountains. We then bike back down to Nyaung Shwe and enjoy the rest of the evening at leisure. We recommend walking around the town and enjoying a local Shan Noodle salad at the night market or opting for a delicious meal at Green Chili or Viewpoint Restaurant.
Day 4 Inle Lake
Today leave the lake shores behind for a full day excursion on Inle Lake. After breakfast take a local trishaw to the jetty where your private boat is waiting. We’ll start with a visit to Khaung Dine village on the lake’s western shores. Take a walk through this village to see the production of various soya dishes- including tofu, fried soya crackers and soya bean paste. A fascinating look at the traditional cottage industries of the lake. Continue to the centre of the lake. Pass villages inhabited by the Intha people who build their houses on stilts and floating gardens built up from strips of water hyacinth and mud and anchored to the bottom with bamboo poles. You will also see the leg-rowing fishermen of the lake who steer their boats with incredible balance. Along the way, we’ll do some sightseeing at some of the lake’s most renowned sites. Continue to Phaung Daw Oo Pagoda, the lake’s main sanctuary, which contains 5 sacred Buddha images, and proceed to the village of Inpawkhone to observe the traditional silk weaving techniques of Innthar people. Inpawkhone is also known for its weaving from the stems of lotus flowers, a time consuming process that results in high quality materials famous throughout the country. We’ll stop for lunch on the lake, where you can taste delicious Inthar or Shan dishes. OPTION: Enjoy a unique opportunity to cook with a local Inthar family in their stilted house on the lake. Assist in the kitchen as you cook an array of delicious, traditional dishes such as stuffed Inle fish and tomato salad. Then sit on the floor, local-style, in the dining room of the house and enjoy your freshly prepared lunch. Cost: USD 40 per person. If time permits, there may be time to enjoy a short walk through one of the lakeside villages.
Day 5 Morning sightseeing, fly to Nyuang U, transfer to Mt Popa
Depart at 08.00 after breakfast at your hotel for an exploration of Nyaung Shwe. The town is at its busiest in the early morning and you’ll get a true taste for local lifestyle with this excursion. Start with a visit to the Nyaung Shwe morning market where locals gather every morning to buy and sell fresh produce from the lake and its surroundings. Continue by local trishaw down to the bustling canal which is a hive of activity in the morning as boats from the lake come in to unload tomatoes and other vegetables for distribution to the markets around the country. Watch as baskets laden with produce are transferred from boats to trucks and bikes. Hop back on the trishaw and wind through quiet streets. Make a stop at the ‘tomato house’, a warehouse-like structure where the tomatoes are sorted and priced for sale. Then continue past some of the many monasteries and nunneries in the town, stopping for photos as you go. Continue to Nyaung Shwe where your car is waiting to transfer you to the Heho Airport. Depending on flight time there may be time to explore this small, quiet village and its many temples and nunneries. There are several restaurants here including an Italian restaurant with superb pizza. A short flight takes you to Nyaung U. Upon arrival drive to Mt Popa, an extinct volcano standing 1518 metres high. Mount Popa has played an important role in Myanmar culture, religion and history since earliest times. Its shrine is dedicated to the worship of the 37 Nats, the Burmese ancient animist spirits. Check in to Popa Mountain Resort with fabulous views over the surrounding area.
Day 6 Morning visit to summit of Mt Popa, drive to Bagan
After breakfast, transfer down to the base of Mt Popa and learn about nats and nat worship as you climb the stairs to the top with your local guide. The view over the Myingyan Plain from the top of the volcanic peak is impressive (and the climb is optional!). We’ll then begin the drive to Bagan, a one-hour journey. Along the way we will stop in a local village where the people use the fruit of the palm tree to make wine and molasses. Witness the incredible production process. Continue on to Bagan and check into your hotel. Take time to relax and freshen up before enjoying lunch at a local restaurant. Late this afternoon we will embark on a horsecart ride through the temple plains to one of Bagan’s many stupas where we can walk to the top to watch the sun set.
Day 7 In Bagan
Your family holiday continues with a day out in Bagan, visiting some of the 2000 pagodas as well as exploring local workshops and villages. Today's program includes a range of sites, providing a great overview of Bagan’s history, culture and local lifestyles. We’ll start at Shwezigon Pagoda, one of the city’s most important, where we can see unique nat statutes and the glittering golden stupa. Then, using flashlights, we’ll explore Kyan Sitthar Cave temple- walking through the tunnel-like corridors and viewing the fading paintings on the ceiling. Next we visit Ananda with its mysterious smiling Buddhas and Shwegugyi, which offers spectacular views from its upper terrace. Continue to the riverside for lunch at Nandawun Restaurant. Then, for animal lovers, we’ll make a short stop at Lawkanandar Sanctuary which is home to a family of unique star tortoises. We will then take a break back at the hotel to go for a swim and escape the midday heat before we transfer to Ngat Pyit Taung Monastery and explore the temple’s caves to observe about local tradition and belief. We then visit the Monastic Primary School where you can visit with the local children who are studying their lessons. Be greeted by their warm smiles and enjoy playing with and meeting the students. Although friendly and welcoming, the children come from a very underprivileged area and a small donation of cash or school supplies will ensure a brighter future for these students. You can learn more about the local culture with a visit to two workshops producing Bagan’s most famous products: lacquer ware and wood crafts. Watch as the skilled craftsmen use techniques passed down through generations to create beautiful items. In this afternoon board a private river boat and set off upriver toward Kyauk Gu U Min. Throughout your Irrawaddy river cruise you will be treated to fabulous scenes of life on the water: fishermen, local ferry boats, riverside villages and views of the Bagan temples. You’ll stop at Sae Lan village and go ashore for a short walk. Sae Lan is typical of the riverside villages along the Irrawaddy. The friendly people work as farmers and fishermen, living a simple but happy life. Continue by boat to Kyauk Gu U Min on the eastern side of the river where a five to ten minute walk takes us to the temple. This beautiful temple has exquisite stone carvings depicting religious figures and flowers on the door. The temple itself is built against the side of cliff, so behind the main hall of the temple you can enter a cave. Inside the cave there are several small niches where individuals can practice meditation. Legend states that the cave was built during the 13th century for the locals to hide from the invading Mongols. After your exploration of Kyauk Gu U Min, you’ll return to the boat for a relaxing cruise back to Bagan (around 1 hour). Transfer back to your hotel upon reaching Bagan.
Day 8 Nyaung U Market in the morning, fly to Yangon
After breakfast you’ll visit the Nyaung U Market, where amid the produce stalls are local toys and other handicrafts that kids may enjoy. We’ll take a local trishaw to a nearby village to observe the making of poneyay (a local pea paste) and plum jam. Then drive to the Nyaung U Airport for your flight to Yangon. Upon arrival in Yangon, transfer to your hotel for an evening at your leisure.
Day 9 Transfer to airport where trip concludes
trip concludes after breakfast. If you are departing today you will be transferred to the airport for your onward flight or if you wish, extend your stay in Yangon with one of our family-friendly excursions or a beach break.