Our Classical Tour will take you to anyplace in Myanmar - the Kingdom of Buddhist temples and pagodas in only 17 days. You will enjoy the beauty of numerous Buddhist pagodas in Yangon - the very first place and also the former capital of Myanmar, Bagan - the land of stupas, and many other attractive places such as Inle Lake, Pindaya, the ancient capital Ava, ...
Myanmar Classic Tour in brief:
Day 1: Yangon arrival - Welcome dinner
Day 2: Yangon - Bago - Golden Rock
Day 3: Golden Rock - Taungoo
Day 4: Taungoo - Bagan
Day 5: Bagan - Mt Popa - Bagan
Day 6: Bagan Sightseeing
Day 7: Bagan Sightseeing
Day 8: Bagan - Pakoku - Monywa
Day 9: Monywa sightseeing
Day 10: Monywa - Sagaing - Amarapura - Mandalay
Day 11: Mandalay - Sightseeing
Day 12: Mandalay - Mingun - Mandalay
Day 13: Mandalay - Pyinoolwin
Day 14: Pyinoolwin - Mandalay
Day 15: Mandalay - Flight to Heho - Pindaya
Day 16: Pindaya - Nyaung - Shwe - Inle Lake
Day 17: Inle - Nyaung Shwe - Heho - Yangon - Departure
Upon arrival, you will be welcomed and transferred to your hotel by our tour guide. For the first day in the former capital city of Myanmar, we will have a brief city tour with a short walking along the Strand Road and Pansoedan Street as well as enjoying the beauty of Yangon River. In the afternoon, we will explore the religion of Burmese by visiting 2,500-year-old Sule Pagoda, the City Hall and relaxing in Mahabandola Garden. Afterwards, we will go shopping in the bustling Bogyoke Market where you can buy anything. Complete the day in the Shwedagon Pagoda – the most famous pagoda in Myanmar.
Stay overnight in Yangon.
A morning 4-hour drive will take you to Kyaikhtiyo in Bago. Here, we will visit Shwemawdaw Pagoda – also known as the Golden God Temple, Shwetharlaung – the world’s second largest Buddha and Kyaikpon Pagoda. Afterward, we will visit the Golden Rock – the must-visit place in Bago with huge golden boulder.
Overnight on the hill.
After breakfast, we will drive to Taungoo – a township of the Bago region which was the homeland of one of the most powerful post-Bagan dynasties. Its enduring legacy in the town is the remains of a grand palace compound. Most of the walls of the palace is remained, as do parts of its moat.The town also boasts many famous temples and monasteries, some of which were built byrulers of the rich and prosperous Taungoo (or Kaytumadi) dynasty to earn merit.Arrive Taungoo , sightseeing to Shwesandaw Pagoda, Myasigone, Kyaungmudaw and Myatsawnyinaung Temples.
Overnight in Taungoo.
Bagan was the seat of power of the First Empire of Myanmar which was founded by King Anawrahta and extended to the border of present day Cambodia. The thousand-year-old temples are left of the original style and are maintained through history by public and State funds.
Stay overnight in Bagan.
In the morning, we will continue enjoy the sightseeing of Mt.Popa.Hiking to the top of the mountain and visiting the monasteries, pagodas and shrines are very interesting for anyone like adventures. We will explore the area of Mt.Popa till afternoon when we head to Bagan. On the way, we will have a chance to observe the ways of life of the climber and the traditional sugar palm workshops.
Stay overnight in Bagan.
After breakfast, we will visit the local market of Nyaung U and Shwezigon Pagoda – a prototype of Burmese stupas with many smaller surrounding shrines. Afterward, we will explore the Htilomilo Temple with its plaster carvings and Ananda Temple – a unique temple resembling a Greek cross. In the afternoon, we will continue discovering Bagan by visiting Manuha Temple – an 11th century Mon style temple, and Nan Phaya Temple – a solemn sandstone monument. Complete the day in the sunset of Bagan.
Stay overnight in Bagan.
A horse-cart will take you to Phwasaw village as well as other places in Bagan to visit Buddhist temples and pagodas. You can also experience the life of the local when passing their villages.In the afternoon, we will visit Kyauk Gu U Min, a stone carve temple, in a boat and enjoy the sunset from the great Irrawaddy River.
Stay overnight in Bagan.
An early morning will take us to Pakoku and visit its weaving and cigar cheroot workshops. You can witness the making process or even buy some silk bags and accessories. Then we will continue to Monywa and enjoy the sunset from the banks of Chindwin River.
Stay overnight in Monywa.
After breakfast, we will drive to Phowun Taung caves where you can see more than 400,000 Buddha images and the wonderful stone carvings from 14th to 16th century. Afterward, we will visit the copper manufactures and you can witness how copper are made in traditional way. In the afternoon, we will visit Mohnyin Than Buddha pagoda and see hundred thousands of Buddha images.
Stay overnight in Monywa.
On the way to Mandalay, we can see the typical scenes of the rural in Myanmar like rice paddie and vegetable plantation. Upon arrival, we will visit Kaungmutaw Pagoda and Ywadaung Village, meet the locals with traditional silver wears and hike up to the Sagaing Hill to enjoy the whole view of Sagaing.Afterward, we head to Amarapura and visit the U Pein teak bridge to enjoy the wonderful of sunset.
Stay overnight in Mandalay.
Morning, we will visit Mahamuni Pagoda and the traditional handicraft workshops in Mandalay. Then we peek into Mandalay Palace – the last royal palace of the last Burmese monarchy, Shwe Kyaung Monastery – also known as Golden Palace and famous for teak carving of Buddhist myth, Atumashi Monastery – a late 19th century monastery with a 30ft tall Buddha image, Kuthotaw Pagoda – a Buddhist stupa with the world’s largest book. Complete the day in the sunset at the Mandalay Hill.
Stay overnight in Mandalay.
Morning excursion to Mingun by boat (11km up river ) from Mandalay on the opposite bank of Ayeyarwaddy River. Tour highlights includes the huge unfinished Mingun Pagoda with marble footprint of Buddha, Mingun Bell which weights 90 tons, and Myatheindan Pagoda with seven concentric terraces at the base. In the afternoon, visit Bamboo mat weaving village by bull cart. Explore the sunset from the river.
Overnight in Mandalay.
In the morning drive to Pyinoolwin (2 hourf drive). Pyin Oo Lwin represented as Little London. It is a hill station and has fine weather, beautiful flowers and trees, colonial buildings and famous for wool knitting. Sightseeing in Pyinoolwin includes the National Kandawgyi Garden, Pwekauk Waterfall and Peikchinmyaung natural cave. Walk around the downtown to see the colonial buildings.
Overnight in Pyinoolwin.
Morning, drive back to Mandalay by car(2 hrs dirve).
Overnight in Mandalay.
In the morning, transfer to Mandalay international aiport to take a flight to Heho. Then continue to Pindaya. Scenic drive over the hills of the Shan plateau, pass through colorful vegetable farms, mustard and wheat fields and the countryside of magnificent beauty. Pindaya is situated 1164m above the sea level and noted for its extensive limestone caves, hand made Shan paper, parasols from mulberry bark. Visit to Pindaya stalactite and stalagmite caves in which countless Buddha images of different types and time exist and traditional Shan umbrella factory.
Overnight in Pindaya.
In the morning transfer to Inle lake (92km, 2 ours drive from Pindaya)which is famous for its unique leg-rowers and scenic beauty. Visit morning floating market where you can see several hill tribes selling and buying fresh vegetables and regional products. Visit to Paungdawoo Pagoda, Ngaphe chaung monastery, silversmith's workshops, traditional weaving industry, blacksmiths and cigar making workshops.
Overnight in Inle lake.
In the afternoon, transfer to the Airport for flight back to Yangon. Overnight in Yangon.Indochinavalue thanks you so much for traveling with us. We hope you had a beautiful Myanmar holiday. All the best, goodbye and see you again!
END OF SERVICE
• Accommodation in Double/Twin bedded rooms with daily breakfast
• All transfers and excursions with private air-conditioned vehicles with drivers mention in program
• Meals as listed in the itinerary: B - Breakfast, L - Lunch, D – Dinner
• All the internal flights with economy cabin including tax
• Local English Speaking Guide
• Domestic Boat fares as per Itinerary
• All entrance fees
• International Air fare
• Travel Insurance
• Personal Expenses such as camera fees, tips, laundry service, etc…
• Meals (Lunches & Dinners)
• Additional tour
• Visa on arrival services
Tour guides who work with us are well-paid, experienced with a university background, eager to exchange our cultures and lifestyles ... with travelers, and have a great passion for their country and understand the personal touch. In some parts such as Sapa, we may use local tour guides who come from the ethnic hilltribes like H'Mong or Red Dao as they know about their land much better than anyone else and this is also the way that Indochinavalue helps the local people a better life.
Tour guide is one of the most important factors to a successful holiday. Indochinavalue understands that a good tour guide needs not only good knowledge on history, culture, good English, French... but also needs to have general requirements and follow our guidelines as below:
1 - Licensed at least for 4 years with work experience.
2 - Guiding does require more than just hanging out in the sun. Guides must be friendly and good with people, organized enough to keep groups or people on schedule, quick on their feet and ready for the inevitable snafus that arises.
3 - Must be an honest broker of their services and able to take criticism.
4 - Should be qualified at some level in health, health care or first aid.
5 - Able to relate to people from a wide range of cultures and backgrounds.
6 - Clear speech and good hearing.
7 - Must not be a alcoholic or No-alcohol during working time or anytime when on tour.
8 - Tour guide is a nurse to take care of visitors, a boss to keep the right itinerary, a teacher to give information, an ambassador to introduce our country, an entertainer because Indochinavalue's clients want to be entertained in extend, a friend...
9 - Must be on time every time. Being late or delay is unacceptable.
10 - Check flight tickets, train tickets, meals, weather... to make sure things are in order and inform local office if any changes that might effect the tour.
11 - Solve problems with care when there is dissatisfy. Argument should be averted by courtesy.
Kind of vehicle (offered on tour) depends on the size of your group size or your requirements. To ensure your comfort, all cars feature air conditioning and enough room inside. Drivers are local, with years of experience, taking you to your destination quickly and safely.
1 - Our drivers are professional and reliable with at least 5 years of experience, driving safely.
2 - Our drivers are not allowed to hear cell-phone or smoke, chat, drink when driving.
3 - Our drivers must be friendly, helpful with good behavior and attitude.
4 - Our drivers are not allowed to take you to shops unless you ask for.
2 Stars from: US$35 -> US$40
The 2 star hotels are good for budget travelers and sometimes, we have no choice but stay in a guesthouse, mini hotel, 2 star hotel in the remote and mountainous areas. Basically, 2 star hotels will offer good size and clean guest rooms with AC, TV, hot water, shower and private bathrooms
3 Stars from: US$40 -> US$80
The 3 star hotels are good for many travelers because they offer basic needs for a comfortable stay, good size and clean guest rooms with Free access high speed Internet, Welcome baskets and drinking water, Telephone with international dialing, Electronic safe box in room, Hairdryer, Coffee and Tea, Wake-up service, AC, TV, hot water, shower and private bathrooms. On-site restaurants with breakfast included and lunch or dinner at your own pick up. A small fitness center, spa and swimming pool can be expected.
4 Stars from: US$80 -> US$130
Offering a wide range of comfortable boutique hotels are available with shopping, dining and entertainment facilities nearby. Featuring quality service, fully furnished rooms, restaurants, fitness center with spa (and swimming pool in most cases), the hotels are expected to offer an above-average accommodation experience.
5 Stars from: US$130 -> US$200 –> US$ 300
Offering an extensive range of facilities for an excellent experience. Multiple restaurants on site and a wide range of choice for buffet breakfast, good size of swimming pool, fitness center and concierge service round out the experience.
The restaurants we will take you for lunch or dinner are all designated tourist restaurants approved by local tourist administration bureau. They have very good sanitary conditions and the food is prepared fresh and clean.
Note: If you have any special dietary needs, just let your travel consultant know when booking.
Breakfast is included at all hotels and is buffet breakfast with Asian and Western food.
Lunches (if included) are usually set menu at handpicked local restaurant with comfortable dining environment where you can rest assure to taste the local flavor. All restaurants are carefully selected and highly recommended.
Dinners are only included if you stay overnight in a homestay with a local family, on cruise in Halong Bay, Mekong Delta or at some special occasions such as welcome dinner, farewell dinner or on requested. So dinners are at your own choice and arrangement, but our tour guides will always give you good suggestions based on your preferences.
If allergic to some food
We suggest you to list any food or ingredients that you are allergic to and let our travel consultant know. Then your travel consultant will mark them in the guide’s itinerary, so that our guides in different cities can make some preparations and arrangements in advance.
Do our guide and driver join the meal with us?
The tour guides and driver will be at the same restaurants with you, but they will only join the meal when you invite. Sometimes the drivers are shy to join as they usually eat fast and could not understand English talk around the table, so the guide will be with you more often.
Street food tour:
Street foods in Vietnam are very delicious and should you want to taste the specialities of each Vietnam holiday destination, we can arrange a street food tour for you. Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for a detailed tour itinerary and quotation.
How to request a tour package?
To request for a free tour itinerary and quotation, you can just fill out the tour inquiry form at www.indochinavalue.com or send us an email at email@example.com then give us as much information as possible. One of our experienced travel consultants will get back to you shortly. All changes will be made (free of charge) until the your tour package meets your needs and personal interests.
How to book a tour package?
As soon as you agree on our proposal, please send us your full name, international flight information (if you have) and your special requirements. We will make reservations and arrange everything then confirm back to you when all done.
- Deposit is a "must". We request 30% of the tour cost. You can pay by wire transfer, credit cards, western union, onepay (online)
- Balance can be made before your arrival or on arrival in cash or by credit cards.
Changes are possible at the last minutes. However, if changes caused extra costs, you will have to pay for. (For examples, hotels, flights, cruises...)
In case of cancellation, we will not apply any charge if we are not charged by the third parties such as hotels, cruises, flights, trains...We will recalculate the costs and resend you the money as soon as possible.
Thanks you Tipping is not mandatory but it is expected in many circumstances for service. You can tip your driver/tour guide more or less or nothing. All depends on the services you receive.
- US$10 – US$ 15 per day for tour guide
- US$7 – US$ 10 per day for driver
- US$1 – US$ 3 per meal for waiter or waitress
- US$2 – US$ 5 for short boat trips/ cyclo/ tuktuk (1 – 2) hours
Note: Please check with your travel consultant before coming and your tour guide if you are to tip someone on tour.
What you get when booking a private tour with Indochinavalue?
1. Private guide, driver and vehicle are for your exclusive use; no matter you are individually, or in a family or friends group. The tour is run exclusively for you without strangers.
2. Every itinerary can be customized to meet your specific interests/ wishes, that is, you can choose your favored hotels, sightseeing spots, the tour length, means of transportation, budget, etc. All are free of charge.
3. Start the tour on any date you want.
4. Escort you from start to finish. All private transfers during the tour are offered, including airport/ train station transfer, hotel-attractions round trip transfer.
5. The sightseeing during the tour could be based on your own timetable and pace. Flexible to change at your short notice.
6. Considerate care and assistance, such as the old, the disabled or families with small kids and children.
7. You can save time and money when traveling with us or your wants meet you budget.
How do I get a visa?
Vietnam Visa On Arrival is available for help. It is legitimated and supported by the Vietnamese Immigration Department. We recommend that you choose visa upon arrival, as picking up visa at the Vietnam int'l airport/ border is quite simple, easy, no additional charges and no fail.
Please provide the following information for us to apply for your visa:
2) Passport number
3) Date of birth
5) Date of arrival
6) Date of issue
7) Date of expire
8) Please make sure that your passport is still valid for 6 months.
Can I use credit cards in Vietnam?
Major credit cards such as Master Card, Visa, Diner's Card, American Express and JCB can be used to purchase goods in large shopping malls and stores in the big and medium cities, to pay for hotel rooms and for meals in some of the fancier restaurants, and to buy plane tickets with them.
- You can use US dollar, Euro in all big cities or at major tourist sites, airports.
- If you are to travel to those small cities or even remote rural areas, only cash in Dong can be used.
Do I need to bring my medical record with me?
Yes, we suggest you take your medical record with you in case that you need it in the event ofan emergency, and please also take with you your doctor's name, address and phone number, emergency contact name and phone number, and your insurance company's name, address and phone number.
Note: You can buy medicines everywhere in Vietnam so do not need to bring medicines from home.
When I finish my tour in Vietnam, if I still have some local money, what can I do?
Upon leaving Vietnam, if you still have some local money, you can change them back to foreign currency with your passport and the exchange memos given by the banks or money exchange counters. So please keep those exchange memos well whenever you change money.
What should we bring along on our trip to Vietnam?
It is best to travel light in Vietnam. One medium sized bag and a day pack will provide more than enough room to carry everything you'll need, and enough space for the things you'll buy in Vietnam.
There are lots of consumer goods in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, so do not worry about running out of something. If you do forget something you can easily find it here. Before you leave home complete the following checklist:
- Lightweight and quick dry clothing is most appropriate for the summer months, and warmer clothing for the winter months. As well, sun hat, swim suit, ultra lightweight rain jacket.
- Travel Documents: Passport, Visa, Travel Insurance, Air Tickets (you should scan them and email them to yourself in case you loose them).
- Health requirements, medications, and travel insurance arranged.
- Flashlight, alarm clock, sunglasses, sunscreen, insect repellent, small personal first aid kit, personal toiletries.
- Money: US dollars or travelers cheques and/ or credit card(s).
- Raincoat or umbrella, good hiking shoes are needed for all Footprint trekking trips.
- Camera with charger, extra batteries, and memory cards.
Are there any restrictions on the type of luggage that we bring? Domestic airlines have their weight restrictions. On most domestic and low-cost airlines You may only have one suitcase or backpack, with a maximum weight of 20kg, and one piece of hand luggage, with a maximum weight of (5 – 7)kg. An extra charge for overweight is applied.
There is no actual limit on our trips, but we would suggest you travel light with one suitcase or backpack and one small daypack or small bag which you can access during the day and carry items like your camera, drinking water, toilet paper, hat, sunscreen, etc.
It is essential that you have a lock for each piece of luggage. Without one, railway and airline staff and some hotels may refuse to handle it.
What is the best type of clothing we should bring?
Here is a short checklist of best type of clothing you should bring:
- Shorts and comfortable pants;
- Shirts, t-shirts and maybe some long sleeves shirts (for regions with mosquitos like the Mekong delta);
- Swim suits (for the beaches and Halong Bay);
- Good sandles as well as good shoes if trekking.
Nevertheless, it will really depend on where you travel to, when you plan on travelling, and what you plan on doing. Please note that the weather can be very cold during the winter in the Northern Vietnam (Nov to Mar) and quite cool in the central highlands (Dalat). You will need to bring a good jacket along for this time of the year, the avarage temperature is about 15 oC, but can get as cold as 3 oC.
Tip: Do not worry if you do not pack enough clothes or forget something because you can buy in Vietnam.
Shopping in Vietnam
Shopping in Vietnam: Many tourists can’t help but throw themselves head-first into shopping while in Vietnam. Why? Probably the variety of quality goods and the tempting prices have a lot to do with it. Many low-budget travelers considered Vietnam a heavenly place because in many shopping situations they can bargain the prices down to as much as a third of the original cost.
The list of Vietnamese bargains is seemingly endless and features bespoke tailoring and the national dress, the 'ao dai' from high-quality silk and many other types of material and textiles while many shoppers cannot get enough of the local handicraft, art and jewelry.
How to bargain?
Bargain is not common in some countries, but in Vietnam it really is. In Vietnam, bargaining is always worthwhile. Yet, it is not always due to the fact that the local have a great deal of time and very little money. Bargaining is part of Vietnamese culture as through bargaining people communicate with others, create and build up their relationship, not to mention a form of entertainment.
Rule - 1: It's like the monster ride at the amusement park. If you're not having fun, get off.
Rule - 2: Don't bargain with the first person who approaches you (i.e., when looking for a taxi at the airport.) In general the further you go from the center of action, the cheaper the price.
Rule - 3: Don't be afraid to use walking away as a bargaining tool. You can always come back.
Rule - 4: Don't let pride get in the way of coming back (or Rule #3 is useless).
Rule - 5: If you really want something and the price isn't coming down, give in gracefully. (It's that pride thing again.)
Rule - 6: Don't always assume you're getting ripped off just because you're in a third-world country. Sometimes the price they're asking is the real one.
Rule - 7: Bargaining is a time/ money tradeoff. If you're in a hurry, be prepared to pay for it.
Rule - 8: Ask (Vietnamese) fellow shoppers the price of an item before you begin bargaining.
Rule - 9: Always carry small bills. Otherwise all that work is likely to be for nothing.
Rule - 10: Always bargain in native currency. Conventional wisdom says anyone who has dollars can afford to spend them.
Rule - 11: If possible, keep going back to the same person until you've gotten to know him/ her. Most third world countries have a name for this kind of relationship. The deal is that you offer your business on a regular basis and the seller responds by saving you their best tomatoes
Rule - 12: No matter what your parents told you, when you're bargaining it's perfectly okay to lie