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Overview

Enjoy this epic multi-sport adventure while visiting not-to-be-missed cultural sites of the Golden Land. Cycle the temples of Bagan, discover the beauty of untouched caves in Hopone, camp near the peak of Mount Yan Aung and kayak the waterways of the Inle Lake – all the while meeting the locals along the way for a trip of a lifetime.

Trip Highlights

Multisport – Middle Burma Adventure

Caving in Hopone

 Go on an expedition to discover the hidden the caves in the secret area of Hopone and explore their beautiful sinter formations.

Trek Pa-Oh region

Trek up to remote Inne Village and camp near the summit of Mount Yan Aung with stunning views over Inle Lake.

Cycle the countryside backroads

Pedal to a pottery village on the bank of Irrawaddy River and explore the ancient Bagan Temples on two wheels.

Itinerary

1

Mandalay Arrival

Transfer from Mandalay Airport to the hotel: 1 hour

Welcome to Mandalay, the second largest city of Myanmar and the starting point of this multi-activity adventures in Myanmar.

On arrival, be welcomed by the adventure guide at the airport and be transferred to the hotel for check-in. Then, drive to the base of Mandalay Hill to visit Shwe Nandaw Kyuang, the Golden Palace Monastery which is noted for its intricate wood carvings, and onwards to Kayuk Taw Gyi Pagoda to view the huge marble Buddha. The marble is from Sagyin quarry and took 10,000 men almost two weeks to transfer the rock from the riverside to its current location. Then, explore Kuthodaw Pagoda, home to ‘the world’s largest book’, a collection of more than 700 marble slabs inscribed with Buddhist teachings.

Enjoy a spectacular sunset with panoramic views from atop Mandalay Hill, situated 240 metres above the city. Take in the stunning views of the surrounding countryside, Irrawaddy River, and city centre.
Overnight in Mandalay.

2

Mandalay – Amarapura – Ava – Yandabo Village (Cycling)

Cycling distance: up to 55 km Elevation: +255m / - 304 m Difficulty: Medium Transfer (Tada-U to Nabuaing): approx. 1 hour

The cycling adventure begins today! After the bike fitting, cycle to Amarapura, a former capital which means ‘City of Immortality’. Visit a silk weaving workshop which produces exquisite handmade products. Continue riding to the famous U Bein Bridge, the longest teak bridge in Asia.

Continue the ride south of the city to Ava, the capital during the 14th to 18th centuries. Take a short ferry ride across the river. Visit the old wooden Bagaya Monastery and the remains of the Royal Palace and Fort. Get a glimpse of local life in the Burmese countryside with many small villages located amid Ava’s ruins.

From here, load the bikes on the support vehicle and rest while on transfer to a small town Nabuaing. If preferred, get on the bikes again to cycle the beautiful dirt road through rustic villages.  The amazing 30 km village trail along the Irrawaddy River offers insights to the interesting village lives of Yandabo. Yandabo is famous for its pottery and historically a significant site as it is the place where the treaty to end the first Anglo-Burmese war was signed in 1826.

Check-in to the hotel located on the riverbank and take a relaxing stroll around the area for a glimpse of the traditional Burmese way of life. Finish the afternoon off with a stroll by the river. As the sun sets, watch children playing in the water and capture photos of the memorable moment.

Overnight in Yandabo.

3

Yandabo – Myingyan – Bagan (Cycling)

Transfer from Myingyan to Bagan: up to 2 hours Cycling distance up to: 25 km Elevation: +188 m / -177 m Difficulty: Very Easy

This morning, learn how the villagers make their famous terracotta pots from riverside clay. Then enjoy a hands-on pottery lesson. After the guide explains the local pottery method, have a go at it.  Try to work the clay into a traditional pot, or create a unique design. Not only is this activity lots of fun, but it produces a fantastic souvenir to take home as well.

After the workshop, hop on the bikes and pedal a few kilometres to Myingyan, which is situated on the eastern bank of the Irrawaddy River.

Today, lunch is served at a local restaurant in Myingyan before transferring to Bagan by coach.

When Bagan was the capital of Myanmar between the 11 - 13th Century, its rulers constructed thousands of huge stupas and temples, many of which are still standing today near the banks of the Irrawaddy River.

Upon arrival at the hotel in Bagan, check-in and take a rest.

This afternoon, take a relaxing horse cart ride around Taungbi Village and observe daily life. Finally, proceed to a place to enjoy an incredible sunset with views across the plains studded with chedis and temples – a truly unforgettable experience.

4

Bagan Temple and Village Cycling (Cycling)

Transfer: 20 min Cycling distance up to: 55 km Elevation: +238 m / -405 m Difficulty: Medium

After breakfast at the hotel, start riding around the ancient temples of Bagan.

First, cycle through Dhamma-ya-za-ka Pagoda, which has pentagonal terrace structures that differ from the usual Bagan pagodas. The Dhammayangyi Temple is also the most massive structure in Bagan. Then, proceed to cycle to Taung Bi Villages and discover the beautiful Nat Taung Kyaung monastery.

Then continue to Shwezigon Pagoda to see its magnificent golden stupa, after visiting Sulamani Temple. On the way, see the elegant Htilominlo Temple noted for its fine plaster carvings and glazed sandstone decorations. The shady road leads to Paya Thone Su Temples which is the final visit this morning. After riding through Minnanthu and Hpyauk Seik Pin Village, arrive at the main road heading to Mt. Popa. Have an option to keep on riding or be shuttled by bus. The drive will be approximately 20 minutes on the main road before the wonderful lunch stop in the toddy palms garden. 

A traditional Burmese lunch will be served in this local setting for a memorable meal and chance to experience local lifestyles. After lunch, continue riding the amazing off-road trail for 26 km. Snake around the mountain while passing through small villages and palm gardens observe farmers working their fields with wooden plows and water buffaloes. Cycle on the dirt road deep into the less touristic area for a different taste in riding and experience. The ride weaves through the villages and quiet lanes enroute to Bagan, which is littered with thousands of temples. Enjoy the memorable sunset on the bikes. 

Overnight in Bagan.

5

Bagan – Heho - Hopone (Caving)

Transfer: 2 hours 30 min Difficulty: Easy

After breakfast, be transferred to Nyaung U Airport for a flight to Heho. From the airport, be transferred to the caving camp near the small town of Hopone. The campsite is totally remote and surrounded by hills and hidden caves. Get a chance to see some villagers going to the farm and stream nearby.

The tents for tonight will be set up and ready. Enjoy a picnic lunch under the shape of bamboo trees. In the afternoon, a small talk about karst and caves of Myanmar will be given by the guide. After the safety briefing, go for a 10-minute walk to explore a beautiful fossil cave with pristine sinter decorations that is 775 metres long. Then do a short trek through the fields and discover another hidden cave on a hill. After a steep climb down for a few metres from the tight entrance, be amazed by a chamber decorated with a beautiful wall.

Return back to the campsite and enjoy a traditional cooked dinner.  

Overnight camping.

6

Hopone – Nyaung Shwe (Caving)

Transfer: 2 hours 30 min Difficulty: Easy

Wake up to the sounds of birds and nature. After breakfast, walk to nearby Pa Oh Village to greet the locals and get to know their morning activities. Then, continue to explore hidden beautiful caves this morning. Enjoy a delicious picnic style lunch before taking a 2.5 hour transfer to Nyaung Shwe, the gate town of Inle Lake. On the way, stop at Taunggyi, the city of Shan State, to visit its hilltop pagoda overlooking the whole city.

Arrive at Nyaung Shwe in the afternoon and check-in to the hotel.

Overnight in Nyaung Shwe.

7

Nyaung Shwe – Inne – Mt. Yan Aung (Trekking)

Walking time: up to 6 hours Trek up to: 17 km Elevation: + 684 m / -607 m Difficulty: Medium Transfer: up to 30 min

Today, the trek starts with a short boat trip to Minethauk village. Upon arrival, visit the famous bridge known as the little U Bein. Then start the 4 hour trek up to Inne Village, a Community-Based Tourism (CBT) project. Enjoy a home-cooked lunch at the village house before exploring the clean and tidy village and the lifestyle of Pa-Oh people there. Experience the activities of traditional hand weaving, green tea processing, and bamboo handicraft making at that village.

Later in the afternoon, continue to Yan Aung Mountain, which is the highest peak in the area. Enjoy a breathtaking view over Inle Lake in the west and the Kakku valley in the east. The campsite for the night will be prepared near the peak. Enjoy the unforgettable sunset from the camp while dinner is served.

Overnight camping.

8

Mt. Yan Aung – Tootan – Pin Cho (Trekking)

Walking time: up to 6 hours Trek up to: 13 km Elevation: + 242 m / - 813 m Difficulty: Medium

Wake up early to see the wonderful sunrise over the Kakku Valley. After breakfast at the camp continue the trek along the mountain range towards Tootan Village. The trek will take about 3 hours. Local lunch will be served in one of the village houses.

After lunch proceed to trek down to Pin Cho Village and observe the plantations of cheroot leaves and turmeric while passing through terraced paddy fields. Pin Cho is a small village situated in the valley with only about 60 households. Spend the night in a local house at Pin Cho village where a local dinner will be served. 

Overnight in Pin Cho.

9

Pin Cho – Moe Kaung - Inle (Trekking)

Walking time: up to 6 hours Trek up to: 14 km Elevation: + 25 m / -533 m Difficulty: Easy Transfer: 1 hour

After a local style breakfast, say goodbye to the host family and leave for the final leg of this adventure in Inle Lake. Walk slightly down hill, continuing along cheroot and turmeric plantations to Magyipin Village. Arrive at Moekaung Village at noon and stop for lunch. Then, walk across rice fields and reforestation areas with sugar cane, garlic farms and bamboo forests on the way. The three days trek will end at Magyigone boat jetty before being transferred back to Nyaung Shwe by boat.

Say goodbye to the trekking team!

Overnight in Nyaung Shwe.

10

Inle Lake (Kayaking)

Boat transfer: up to 1 hours Kayak up to 3 hours Difficulty: Easy

This morning, take a short walk to the jetty before heading to Myanmar’s most spectacular sights, Inle Lake by traditional long tail boat. Pass through floating villages and water hyacinth gardens.

Travel to Phaung Daw Oo Pagoda, the lake’s main sanctuary, containing five sacred Buddha images and houses royal barges used during the pagoda’s annual festival. Proceed to the village of Inpawkhone to observe the traditional silk weaving techniques of the Inthar people. Inpawkhone is also renowned for weaving lotus flowers stems, an intricate process resulting in high quality products that are used across the country. Visit a cheroot factory where local Burmese cigars are rolled by hand.

Stop for lunch where a spread of delicious traditional Inthar dishes are served alongside stunning views of the lake and its surroundings.

After lunch, be transferred out of the central area of the lake and into the quiet lakeside village of Nampan. The hustle and bustle fades away and in comes the peace and serenity of southern Inle. In the south, the water is crystal clear and reflects the Shan mountain backdrop.

At Nampan, the guide and boatman will unload the kayaks where the journey through southern Inle Lake begins.

Start by paddling through the main part of Inle Lake towards the village of Mine Pyo. Paddle alongside the iconic traditional one-leg rowing fisherman and marvel at their balance and focus. While balancing on one foot, the fisherman wraps an oar around his other foot to steer while casting a net with his free hands. This traditional fishing technique has been taught and practiced through generations and requires years of practice to master.

At Mine Pyo, stop at a local Inthar house for a cup of traditional Shan tea and some local snacks. Enjoy local soy products like crackers and fried tofu as well as locally made Shan ‘doughnuts’. Take a moment to take in the view before finishing the final leg and paddling to Se Sone village.

Finish up the day at another local Inthar home in Se Sone village. Upon arrival, enjoy a short leisurely walk in Se Sone Village before getting on the boat for a transfer back to Nyaung Shwe.

11

Nyaung Shwe – Heho – Yangon

Transfer from hotel to Heho Airport: 1 hour Transfer from Airport to Yangon downtown: approx. 1 hour

This morning take a scenic one-hour drive to Heho Airport to catch the flight to Yangon. Along the way, stop at the wooden Shwe Yan Pyay Monastery which features beautiful carvings and a collection of Buddha images.

Yangon, formerly known as Rangoon, is a relatively quiet and charming city with an impressive colonial and spiritual heritage. Upon arrival, be welcomed by the culture guide at the airport and be transferred downtown. First, visit Kyaukhtatgyi Pagoda, which is home to a 70-metre long reclining Buddha. Continue through the city and make stops to take photos.

Venture downtown to explore the city centre and its fabulous mix of architecture and sites. The streets are filled with historical buildings many of which have a faded colonial charm not seen elsewhere in Asia. Start at the post office, a lovely historic building, and walk to Sule Paya, passing by the famous Strand Hotel, Mahabandoola Garden and Independence Monument. Then, travel onwards to Little India and Chinatown, a colourful cacophony of restaurants, temples and markets.

Arrive at Bogyoke Market, formerly known as Scott’s Market (Please note: The market is closed on Mondays and public holidays), and browse through the dozens of stalls and shops. This is Yangon’s best market for handicrafts and other goods.

Finally continue to Shwedagon Pagoda the most revered Buddhist temple in Myanmar. Although the origins of the pagoda are unclear, the local legend states that the original structure was built 2,500 years ago. The 8-sided central stupa is 99 metres tall and covered with gold leaf and surrounded by 64 smaller stupas. Enjoy breathtaking views of the golden stupa from this vantage point.

Overnight in Yangon.

12

Yangon Departure

Transfer to the airport: 1 hour

Spend this day at leisure before being transferred to the airport for the onward flight back home.

Important Information

Our services include:

  • Accommodation as listed above with Twin/Double sharing included breakfast
  • Vehicles: (varies based on local conditions and vehicle sizes available). Private air-conditioned vehicle for transfer and back up as itinerary.
  • Main support vehicle will have spare parts for biking days
  • Bike, helmet and Kayak rental
  • Camping equipment (tent, sleeping bag, air mattress)
  • Caving equipment (helmet, headlight and glove)
  • Plenty of water provided throughout the day while cycling, trekking and Kayaking
  • Snacks and local fruits
  • 1 EXO Adventure Certified English Guide throughout the trip from Mandalay to Inle
  • 1 local assistant for biking days for 11 cyclists and above
  • Mechanic for biking days for 7 cyclists and above
  • 1 English Speaking Station Guide in Yangon
  • 1 first aid kit per guide
  • Meals as mentioned in the itinerary (B – Breakfast, L – Lunch, D – Dinner)

Our services don’t include:

  • Visa arrangement
  • International & Domestic flights (Please see separate domestic airfare table mentioned as above)
  • Meals other than mentioned above
  • Soft drinks, or beverages beyond water – we can add this into costs at agents request
  • Beverage and alcoholic drinks at mealtimes
  • Tips
  • Personal Travel Insurance
  • Personal expenditure (Laundry, telephone)
  • Any other services not clearly mentioned in the itinerary and in the inclusive portion.
  • Credit card/bank transfer fees
  • Other language speaking guides

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