Thailand and Myanmar Itinerary

14 Days 13 Nights

Itinerary Overview

This 13 – night itinerary combines a visit to both Thailand and Myanmar. You will not only visit major sites but lesser known sites, visit cities and villages, temples and monasteries, take a ride on a hot air balloon over the spectacular temples of Bagan, enjoy beautiful scenery, visit markets and enjoy a cooking demo and meet local people. More nights can be added in both Thailand and Myanmar.

Day 1 Bangkok

In the arrival hall you will meet with the English-speaking guide followed by a private transfer to your hotel.

Hotel: The Ariyasomvilla Hotel
Day 2 Bangkok

Breakfast is at the hotel

Start the day at 8am to visit Wat Pho to listen to the morning chants of the monks. Afterwards explore the temple’s complex with its colossal Reclining Buddha and the Chedis of the Kings.

Take a tuk – tuk ride on around Sanam Luang to visit the Grand Palace, one of the most Beautiful samples of an ancient Siamese court. It used to be the residence of the Kings of Thailand. Here you will see palaces which were used for different occasions: The Funeral Palace, the Reception Palace, the Throne Hall, the Coronation Hall, the Royal Guest House and the beautiful Emerald Buddha Temple.

Lunch is at a local riverside restaurant

Continue with a long-tail boat ride to explore Thonburi, the western part of Bangkok, situated on the right side of the Chao Phya River. Its many canals had originally given Bangkok the name “Venice of the East.” Passing by boat along the canals gives you a first – hand impression of the scenic life along Bangkok’s waterways. Also visit the Royal Barges and the Temple of Dawn.

Hotel: The Ariyasomvilla Hotel
Day 3 Bangkok

Breakfast is at the hotel.

Visit the Royal Grand Palace. You will go back in history to Bangkok during the reign of King Rama IV. Drive and walk through 3 roads: Charoen Krung, Bamrungmuang and Fueng Nakorn that are full of history. First stop is at Wat Sraked (Golden Mt.) for a panoramic view of old Bangkok city.

Afterwards, continue by tuk – tuk (Samlor) to visit Baan Bart, the original Khmer community and nowadays well-known for the alms bowls or Baat making. Walk further to visit Wat Suthat and the Giant Swing.

After lunch at a local restaurant, return to the hotel.

Meet your guide in the hotel lobby for the exciting Bangkok by Night Tour by tuk – tuk. Explore bustling Chinatown, a popular tourist attraction and food haven. Continue the journey to Pakklong Talaad, the biggest wholesale and retail fresh flower market, in Bangkok followed by dinner at a local restaurant.

After dinner, continue around the Ratanakosin area with the fantastic views of “The Must-See” attractions in Bangkok: Ananta Samakhom Throne Hall, The Golden Mount, Wat Ratchanaddaram, The Democracy Monument, The City Pillar Shrine, The Grand Palace, Wat Pho, National Theater and Santi Chaiprakarn Park.

Hotel: The Ariyasomvilla Hotel
Day 4 Bangkok – Chiang Mai

Breakfast is at the hotel.

Transfer to Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport for a mid-morning flight to Chiang Mai.

In the arrival hall, you will meet your guide for a half day excursion to the most sacred temple of Chiang Mai, Doi Suthep. Perched atop a forested mountain with sweeping views of the city below, this most sacred of Chiang Mai’s temple (3,280 ft.) houses a wealth of Buddha images, murals and Buddhist arts. Climb the 306 step Naga staircase to reach the temple with an opportunity to make a blessing with a monk before returning to the hotel.

Hotel: Tamarind Village Hotel
Day 5 Chiang Mai

Breakfast is at the hotel.

Your culinary adventure will not be complete if you do not experience a cooking course in Chiang Mai. Cook in a friendly environment with lots of fun at Pantawan Cooking School. The cooking course includes a visit to the local market, an introduction to Thai ingredients and the actual cooking. The course has been designed as a half-day course with 4 mouth-watering Northern Thai dishes. The dishes could include Abb Pla (Grilled fish with herbs in bananaleaves), Nam Prig Ong (Northern style chilli dip with minced pork and cherry tomatoes), Lab Muang Kai (Northern Thai spicy chicken salad with herbs) and Khao Soi Gai (Chiang Mai curry noodle with chicken). The lesson has a warm and easy – going atmosphere of Thai hospitality in a beautiful modern wooden house set in a relaxing garden and an organic farm. You will prepare food step by step with the help, tips and hints from the professional instructors. The class is a real hands on experience. You will finish with eating what you have cooked.

After having lunch, return to your hotel. Rest of the day is at leisure.

Hotel: Tamarind Village Hotel
Day 6 Chiang Mai

Breakfast is at the hotel.

Enjoy a full day visit to Elephant Nature Park, a natural home and sanctuary for elephants, buffalos, dogs, cats, birds and many other rescued animals.

Depart the Elephant Nature Park for the City and Temples tour in Chaing Mai. Start by visiting Wat Laam Chang, Wat Chiang Man and Wat Phra Singh. Take a ride on Three Wheels along Chiang Mai Ta Pae Gate and visit Wat Chedi Luang and Wat Phantao. End the day with a visit to Warorod local market.

Hotel: Tamarind Village Hotel
Day 7 Chiang Mai – Bangkok - Yangon

Breakfast is at the hotel.

Transfer to Chiang Mai Airport for your flight to Bangkok and connect to your flight to Yangon.

Upon arrival at Yangon Airport, you will be welcomed by your guide and transferred to the hotel.

Hotel: The Belmond Governor Residence Hotel
Day 8 Yangon - Bagan

Breakfast is at the hotel.

Transfer to the airport for the domestic flight to Bagan.

Upon arrival, visit the most significant pagodas and temples of Bagan including Shweizigon Pagoda built by King Anawrahta in the early 11th century as a religious shrine, Myingaba Gu Byauk Gyi Temple, a visit to the massive Htilominlo, built by King Htilominlo on the site where he was chosen from the five sons of King Nadaungmya to be the crown prince and Tharabar Gate.

Continue to Ananda Temple with its four magnificent standing Buddha images.

Hotel: Aureum Palace Hotel
Day 9 Bagan

In the very early morning at 5:30am, you will be picked up from your hotel and transferred to the launch site for your balloon flight.

The sunrise champagne flight lasts just under one hour and takes off daily from October through to the end of March. The balloon is guided by gentle winds not exceeding 15 mph, allowing passengers a serene and peaceful bird’s-eye view of the ancient temples. The pilot will guide the balloon to a gentle landing on the banks of the Irrawaddy River or in an open field where the crew will offer you a celebratory glass of champagne.

Approximately around 9am return to the hotel.

After breakfast, stroll through the local morning market to take in this lively daily activity. Bagan is not just temples and shrines. You will also have the opportunity to explore its alternative side with visits to sleepy villages scattered over the surrounding plains, including visits to a farmer’s house, a barber’s shop and exploration of traditional family businesses such as lacquerware and bamboo factories. You will also watch rice being pounded in the traditional Burmese way.

Continue to Myinkaba Village where you will visit one of the famous lacquerware craftsmen’s workshops.

In the afternoon, a decorated ox-cart is waiting to show you more of Bagan’s ancient temples in the traditional way of transportation used by people in Myanmar’s countryside. Enjoy sunset over the plains and mountains of Bagan while cruising on the Irrawaddy River.

A candle lit dinner will be arranged for you next to a Pagoda complex in the Bagan area. You will be welcomed by a flood of torch lights, candles and bamboo lamps for an unforgettable evening. The dinner table will be set near a temple complex for an unforgettable meal in a magical surrounding. The entertainment of the night will consist of traditional Myanmar dance and xylophone and harp music.

Hotel: Aureum Palace Hotel
Day 10 Bagan - Mandalay

After breakfast, transfer to the airport for your domestic flight to Mandalay.

Upon arrival, you will proceed directly to Sagaing, approximately 32 kms from Mandalay airport to visit Mya Setkyar Monastery, a Buddhist monastery, where more than 400 monks live and study to experience having the monks their meal in total silence.

You will head to Mandalay, to experience the sights and sounds of Mandalay including the Golden Palace Monastery, a superb example of a traditional wooden building, Mandalay Palace, built by King Mindon in 1861, to fulfill an old prophecy and the Kuthodaw Pagoda, the world’s largest book made of marble. Then, visit one of the most revered religious monuments in Myanmar, the Mahamuni Pagoda before proceeding to Mandalay Hill for a sunset view.

Hotel: Red Canal Hotel
Day 11 Mandalay – Heho – Inle Lake

After breakfast, transfer to the airport for the domestic flight to Heho.

Upon arrival, transfer to Nyaung Shwe jetty to take an excursion by boat on Inle Lake. En route you will see the famous leg rowers, typical floating gardens, local methods of fishing, village life and magnificent scenery. Visit Phaungdaw Oo Pagoda, Nga Phae Kyaung Monastery with its superb collection of antique Buddha statues and the weaving village of Inpawkhon. Then, continue for a visit to a cheroot factory and a traditional boat making village.

Hotel: Villa Inle Resort
Day 12 Inle Lake

After breakfast, begin your day exploring one of the floating markets by boat (according to market day calendar).

Transfer by boat to Maing Tauk village located on the eastern shore of the lake. Walk through the village and continue up hill (walking time approximately 1 hour) under the shade of the trees to the meditation center. The moment you arrive, you will feel a sense of serenity and peacefulness. A monk will introduce you into the world of meditation and give you a lecture on the way body and mind depend on and condition each other.

Excursion by boat to Thei Lei Oo. Thei Lei Oo is a beautiful rural farming village on the eastern shore of Inle Lake. It is at the heart of one of the most important farming areas on the lake. The inhabitants of the village are Inn Tha and Pa O ethnic minority groups.

The major crops farmed are rice, sugar cane, potatoes, tomatoes, garlic and a variety of beans, as well as cucumber and flowers. During the winter season (November to February), the harvested sugar cane is sent to small on – site molasses plants where the juice is extracted, made into molasses, then sent to the city for use in the production of Mandalay Rum. It affords an excellent window into village life untouched as it is by modern development. Return to the hotel. Total walking time: 1½ to 2 h (mostly flat terrain).

Enjoy a cooking lesson led by the chef. You will actively participate in the shopping for meat and vegetables at the local market which are necessary for the menu you are going to cook. The chef will explain the ingredients. The cooking lesson will take place in the private area of the restaurant’s kitchen. At the end, you will enjoy a special prepared meal.

Hotel: Aureum Palace Hotel
Day 13 Inle Lake – Heho – Yangon

After breakfast, transfer to the airport for the domestic flight to Yangon.

Upon arrival, transfer to the Central Post Office to start your walking tour along the famed Strand Road to view the antiquated Pansodan Jetty and observe busy riverside life. Then head up Pansodan Street which contains some of Yangon’s most impressive colonial buildings. Stop for a perfect view of the famed city icons such as Sule Pagoda, City Hall and the High Court. We then cross the greenery of Maha Bandoola Garden and view a district with abundant second-hand book stores.

Continue your walk with the exploration of the gold shops of Shwe Bontha Street. Stroll through the Bogyoke (Scott’s) Market (closed on Mondays and public holidays).

Transfer to the railway station for a journey on the circular commuter train around Yangon. (Please take note that the trains are very basic, often crowded and not reliable.) You will get off at Kyi Myin Daing Station and immerse yourself in this lively local Myanmar neighborhood where today’s modern lifestyle mixes with old traditions. Visit the colorful roadside market and join the locals in a tea shop where they discuss important issues of the day.

Visit Shwedagon Pagoda which is famous for its jewel encrusted spire.

Hotel: The Belmond Governor Residence Hotel
Day 14 Yangon - Departure

Breakfast is at the hotel

Transfer to the airport for your international departure flight.