Myanmar is a beautiful country, still, one of the less visited in South East Asia. Foreign travel started there not so long ago after half-century isolation because of a military regime. The situation in the country is quite controversial even today but there are many reasons for visiting Myanmar now. There is much to see there. For sure, you must love temples and pagodas when visiting Myanmar because you will see thousands of them in this country. Check my suggested itinerary for busy first-time visitors, including the must-see sights of Yangon, Inle Lake, Bagan and Mandalay.
Before day one. Arrival in Yangon and night in Yangon.
Day 1. Yangon
If there is one reason for visiting Yangon, it is the Shwedagon temple. Spend the first part of your day there.In the afternoon, see the centre of the city. Use your evening to attend a dinner show at Karaweik palace, learning, enjoying the cultural performance and great food.Night Yangon
Day 2. Yangon and traveling to Nyaung Shwe
Visit Dala Township across the Yangon River to see the everyday life of the locals.Spend the first part of the afternoon in the National Museum learning about the history and culture of Myanmar.Afternoon departure to a bus station for a night trip to Nyaung Shwe.Night on the bus to Nyaung Shwe.
Day 3. Inle Lake
After early morning arrival, have a transfer to your lake hotel and take a boat tour around the lake.Have a leisurely afternoon at the hotel.Dinner and night show at the hotel.
Night on the Inle Lake.
Day 4. Bicycling around Nyaung Shwe
After breakfast, go back to Nyaung Shwe by boat, check into the hotel, rent a bike and go. Visit Khaung Daing hot springs and the Shwe Yan Pyay monastery, and sip wine while watching the sunset at Red Mountain winery.
Night Nyaung Shwe.
Day 5. Going to Bagan and Bagan
Heho to Bagan flight.Arrival in Bagan in the early afternoon. Getting acquainted with Bagan.Sunset at Temple optional.
Day 6. Temples of Bagan
A hot air balloon flight is optional because it’s expensive but recommended.Visiting the best temples of Bagan.Sunset at the temple.
Day 7. Taung Kalat monastery tour and Bagan.
Even though Taung Kalat monastery is next to Mount Popa, not on it, it’s often called Mount Popa monastery. Half a day tour is worth doing.Back to Bagan for a leisurely afternoon or more temples sightseeing.
Day 8. Full day boat tour to Mandalay. Mandalay
Full day boat tour about 10 hours.After arrival in Mandalay and transfer to the hotel, short walk around and street food dinner nearby.
Day 9. Tuk-tuk tour in Mandalay and surroundings
Hiring a tuk-tuk for a full day tour.Visit Royal Palace, Kuthodaw pagoda, see the biggest book in the world,go to ancient capital Inwaand watch the sunset at U Bein Bridge.Night Mandalay.
Day 10. Mandalay
Learn about making gold leaf at King Galon Gold Leaf Workshop.Take a midday break. In the afternoon, visit Sandamuni pagoda with whitewashed stupas.Then continue your way up to Mandalay hill to admire sunset views.On your way back to the hotel, watch a water fountain show at Mandalay Moat.
Night Mandalay. End of the tour.
I very much liked the service of Asian Tour Travel Company who took care of my travels, transfers, and accommodation, so I just had to do my own sightseeing.
Practical tip. For flying to Myanmar from Asia, check AirAsia flights in the first place.
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What did you think? Have you been to Myanmar? Or perhaps you’re thinking of visiting there in the near future? Either way, I’d love to hear from you so please add your comments below.
Author: Anita Sāne
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