Yangon and Bagan


The images of Burma are startling in their simple beauty—saffron-robed monks walking silently in single file, gold-spired pagodas glinting like jewels on faraway hills, rickshaw drivers in striped longyis (sarongs) peddling lazily through tree-lined streets. On this extension, visit nostalgic Yangon (formerly Rangoon), with its magnificent Shwedagon temple bustling with monks and pilgrims, and watch a golden sunset over a thousand temples on the great plain of Bagan. This tropical nation abounds with visual delights, but it is the encounter with Burma’s people—graceful and deeply spiritual—that lingers in the traveler’s mind long after journey’s end.

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1

Morning arrival in the Yangon airport, where you are met for a transfer to your hotel. In the late afternoon, meet your guide and visit the National Museum, whose treasures include the beweled Lion Throne, which belonged to Burma's last king, and traditional hill tribe costumes (the museum visit may be tomorrow instead of today, depending on your time of arrival in Yangon). Overnight at hotel...meals on your own
(Note: The National Museum is closed on Mondays.)

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Day 2

Although Yangon has now grown to a city of almost seven million people, it still retains its charm. Start the day with a visit to the eight-sided Sule Pagoda, considered the heart of old Rangoon and dating back more than 2,000 years. We'll stroll past Mahabandoola Park, then through downtown Yangon, with its faded colonial architecture and red-brick British-built post office. Visit Kyaykhtatgyi pagoda, which houses an enormous reclining Buddha, and enjoy lunch in a local restaurant, then visit Bogyoke Market (closed Mondays) and the Indian quarter for a different view of the city. The day ends with a visit to the gold-spired Shwedagon pagoda, a center of worship in Burma, and a place always bustling with monks, pilgrims, and worshippers. (Note: In Burma, all visitors to pagodas need to remove their shoes and socks.) Overnight at hotel...BL

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Day 3

An early morning flight brings you to Bagan (formerly Pagan), one of the most extraordinary sights all of Southeast Asia. You'll visit a variety of pagodas reflecting the best of Bagan’s architectural styles, including the famous Shwezigon Pagoda, one of the four most significant buildings in Bagan (it served as a center of reflection and prayer); Ananda, whose marvelous interior is filled with glazed terracotta tiles and a honeycomb of niches containing small stone Buddha images; Htilominlo Temple, famed for its original plaster carvings and glazed sandstone decorations that are remarkably well preserved; Mingalazedi Pagoda, one of the few temples in Bagan with a full set of glazed terra cotta tiles; and Dhammayangyi Pagoda, Bagan’s largest temple, with six monumental ascending exterior terraces. Enjoy a sunset view from one of the most scenic spots in town and return to the hotel in the early evening. Overnight at hotel...BLD

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Day 4
Bagan / Mount Popa / Salay

Rising nearly 5,000 feet from the plains of the surroundings of Bagan, Mount Popa is considered the sacred home of Burma's nats (spirits). During our 1.5-hour drive to Mount Popa, we visit a palm village for a look at how palm sugar is produced. Continue to Mount Popa and visit Taung Kalat, the temple that sits atop the peak. The monastery holds significance in Burma’s history and religion and is considered the home to the 37 nats (spirits) of Burma, which are displayed at the base of the temple. The views from atop may reach as far as Bagan on a clear day. Enjoy lunch and continue to the colorful old religious center of Salay, home to a large number of monasteries and colonial buildings. Visit Yoke-Sone-Kyaung Monastery, built in 1882 and now a cultural heritage site. Set on the eastern bank of the Irrawaddy River, ity is famous for its spectacular wood carvings. Return to Bagan in the late afternoon. Overnight at hotel...BLD

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Day 5
Bagan / Yangon

In the morning, visit the colorful Nyaung U market, full of all manner of goods including vegetables, fish, and beautiful textiles, and also the Zayta Wun monastery, which also houses an orphanage. A walk around Min Nan Thu village allows you the opportunity to observe local life. After lunch, transfer to the airport for the late afternoon flight to Yangon. Transfer to hotel for overnight...BLD

Hotels in Yangon:
Standard: Chatrium Hotel, deluxe room
Optional Upgrade: GOvernor Residence, deluxe room

Hotels in Bagan:
Standard: Aye Yar River View Resort, grand deluxe room, or Bagan Thante, deluxe river view room
Optional Upgrade: Thiripyittsaya Sanctuary Resort, deluxe river view room

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Day 6
Yangon / Depart

Transfer to the airport for homeward-bound flight...B

Please note: Airline flights are not included in the Tour Cost. Wilderness Travel can book them for you at additional cost, or you can book on your own.


Length: 6 days
Cost From: $1995  
Arrive: Yangon, Burma
Depart: Yangon, Burma
Lodging: 5 nights in comfortable hotels
Meals: Meals as indicated (B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner)
Activity: Cultural Adventures
Trip Level:

Walking tours and cultural exploration

Visa Requirements

A visa is required for U.S. citizens visiting Burma (Myanmar). Your visa must be obtained prior to arrival.