12 Days of Fun, Food and Amazing Sights
Wow! Call it Myanmar or call it Burma - we just call it an ‘adventure’. Join Spirit House for an unforgettable experience of sights, sounds and tastes, plus plenty of off-the- beaten-path adventures which you have come to expect from our eclectic Asian Tours.
Over 12 days, you will enjoy the best that Myanmar has to offer. Interesting food, temples, lots of temples, but, we solemnly promise, not one temple too many. Sunset drinks on an Irrawaddy River sandbar, ancient ruins, colourful people, great hotels and many more experiences which will take your breath away.
In short, we have created an amazing Burmese adventure for you to share with a small group of eight like-minded people.
Here’s an appetising snapshot of what’s in store for you:
- Food - fun restaurants, funky bars and some exclusive food experiences.
- Iconic Sights - Buddhist temples, floating villages, off-the-beaten-path cultural experiences
- Boutique Hotels - luxurious comfort at the end of each day for our Spirit House adventurers
- Photos - breathtaking scenery which will fog the lens of your camera
- Fun - your Spirit House chef/host has one job and one job only: to ensure you all have fun and enjoy this fabulous holiday
- Hungry for more? Read on for our detailed Itinerary. The dates are as follows:
Exploring Yangon (AKA Rangoon)
On both of these days you have the morning free - sleep in , chill out or go for an explore around the city. Yangon is a very SAFE and easy town to navigate and is jam packed with so many interesting shops, neighbourhoods, bars and restaurants all within easy walking from the hotel. The people are super friendly and will happily point you in the right direction and many speak English.
Your Spirit House host can advise you on what to see in your free time or will be happy to join you if you want some company.
DAY 2 - Afternoon:
Make sure you’re back at the hotel at 4pm ready to visit the Schwedagon Pagoda. This is truly one of the wonders of the Buddhist world.
Dinner at a fantastic restaurant with food from the different regions of the Shan State. Back to the hotel for a nightcap or to a hidden rooftop bar with view over the pagoda.
DAY 3 - Afternoon:
Please be back at the hotel by 12.30 and we’re off for a local institution for lunch. Following lunch we will have a guided historical walking tour of Yangon learning all the secrets and surprising history of the European quarter of the city.
Following that, it’s cocktails and dinner at an iconic historic hotel.
Day 4 - Off to Bagan
We fly to Bagan this morning.
Enjoy stunning views over the Bagan kingdom from the Swe Sandar stupa rising tall above the plains of Bagan dotted with hundreds of ancient temples.
Now, you may be thinking - I’m going to get sick of all those temples and ordinarily we would agree with you, but the temples in Bagan are like stars in the sky - there are just so many that it never gets boring to look at.
Plus, we only go inside one or two. The best way to see a temple is from the outside!
A private sunset cruise on the Irrawaddy river and we find ourselves at cocktail hour so it’s rum sours, tea leaf salad and local snacks on a sandbank in the middle of the river to watch the sun set.
Dinner at a quirky restaurant in an old cinema which has been converted into a large dining venue. Featuring Western food and great wine, they grow much of the food onsite and also make their own cheese. We told you this tour would be different!
Day 5 - The stunning temple plains of Bagan
After breakfast, we visit Ananda Temple - the masterpiece of Bagan and often considered most beautiful temple of all, plus the Gubyaukgyi Temple with magnificent mural paintings dating back to 11th century.
Our guide will take us to some great locations for iconic photo opportunities of this stunning landscape.
Hungry? Let’s enjoy a private traditional lunch in a small village, learn a few local dishes and how food is prepared in villages all over the country. Return to hotel for a swim and short rest.
Dinner in town - we have a few choices for dinner but will decide on the day.
Day 6 - Off the beaten path
Now you’re all soothed for our road trip that gets us off the beaten toursit path to one of the more intriguing and quirky sites of Myanmar.
After Lunch we check out and drive to Monywa. Along the way we will stop in and visit some cottage industries where they make hand-rolled cheroot cigars and traditional Burmese sandals.
We arrive in Monyway early evening to check in and have dinner at the hotel ready to prepare for our adventure tomorrow.
Cave Temples of Po Win Taung
Po Win Taung is an extraordinary complex consisting of 947 sandstone caves dug out of the hills and contains what is considered by archaeologists to be the richest collection of mural paintings and Buddhist statues in Southeast Asia. The best part - very few tourists visit here because they always fly over it.
After visiting Po Win Taung, we continue a few hundred meters away to Shwe Ba Taung and spend time exploring this interesting site where monasteries and temples are carved out of rocky narrow cliffs.
Time permitting we may stop at Kyet Su Kin village for an opportunity
to learn more about the lifestyle and culture of the countryside residents by Po Win Taung.
Return to Monywa to hotel and have dinner somewhere local.
Day 8 - The Road to Mandalay
On our drive towards Mandalay we make two interesting stops: First we visit a very quirky temple that borders on kitsch except it is filled with over 500,000 Buddhas. Then we pass through Bodhi Ta Htaung to gaze in awe at a gigantic, 100+ metre tall, standing Buddha which dominates the bizarre scene.
Afternoon tea in a Buddhist Nunnery in Sagaing.
Sagaing Hills, is special place and one most the important monastic centres in Myanmar with over 700 Buddhist monasteries and nunneries, monastic schools, universities and even hospitals for the monks and nuns.
With great views over the Irrawaddy River, we walk down the hill stopping en-route at one of the monasteries for a tea and to learn about life and practice of Buddhist devotees.
Then a sunset view of the famous Ubein Teak Bridge
Arrive in Mandalay early evening and check in to our hotel.
Tired? Sure, we could have flown 40 minutes from Bagan to Mandalay yesterday, but consider all the cool stuff we would have missed.
Incl. Hotel All Transport All Entrances All Meals
Day 9 - Inle Lake
Now, you’re possibly thinking, ‘We sure do visit a lot of Buddhist temples’. And you’d be right, because just before Buddha died, he asked his followers not to make a big fuss over him after he had parted this mortal coil. Unfortunately, the local Burmese didn’t get that memo.
But we hear you. Now it’s time to switch gears. We’re going to Inle Lake to experience floating villages and life living permanently on a lake. So here’s the plan:
Morning flight to Heho (30 mintes) where we make a short stop to see how Shan parasols and paper are made using generations’ old methods. It is a pleasant 1 hour drive from Heho to Inle Lake.
Our boats will be ready in Nyaung Shwe town to take us for an excursion to our hotel which is actually built on the lake. This trip is just fascinating with plenty of unexpected sights along the way.
Dinner at Hotel as there are no restaurants on the lake.
Day 10 - Hidden Lake Treasures
Breakfast at hotel then in to our long tail boat as we follow currents of a small river flowing to the lake to reach archeological site of Inn Thein. Short walk through bamboo forest will bring us to site with hundreds of ancient pagodas and, interestingly, some of the best shopping opportunities of the trip.
To compensate you for the overload of temples, we have the most amazing lunch experience for you. But it is a surprise - trust us, you’ll love it.
In the afternoon, visit Inn Phawkone village to see how lotus fibres are made to threads and garments. The local ladies here are particularly skilled in making traditional fabrics sold throughout the country.
In Inn Phawkone village, local silversmiths continue their heritage craftsmanship of working silver.
Back to the hotel mid afternoon just in time to kick off a cooking class if you want or some beers overlook the lake scenery and watch the sunset.
Dinner is in the hotel.
Optional: Evening Shan cooking class at the hotel.
Day 11 - Adventures back to Yangon
Today we head back to Yangon. But there is still fun to be had.
En-route to the airport we visit boat builders in the charming Thale Oo village. We will do a village walk and have the chance to learn more of local farming methods and village life in the fertile Shan state.
You know what would be good about now at this part of the tour? A nice glass of wine.
Well, we have you covered. We’re off for a wine tasting at Myanmar’s premier winery at Red Mountain Estate where a French wine maker has been perfecting his pioneering produce for 15 years.
Lunch at the winery.
Then off to the airport for the flight back home to Yangon.
From the airport, we visit Shwe Sabwe Restaurant where acclaimed European chefs train the local team. A nice residential house with cool vibe.
Check in at the hotel, enjoy a well-earned rest. Can you also rest over a few drinks? For connoisseurs of a fine cocktail, join us for a drink at the Le Planteur Restaurant or Strand Hotel Bar, another iconic location in Yangon.
That’s it, Folks! Sleep tight.
Day 12 - The End
Breakfast at the hotel, then we have organised transfers to the airport for your flight home.
For those looking for a lazy few days to unwind after your Spirit House adventure, there are stunning beaches in the south of Myanmar. You have most probably earned it, so do enjoy.