"Burma is a land of so many contrasts, and the lasting impression is of the people we met. As tourism is still fairly new there is a genuine interest in new visitors and many are keen to show off their beautiful country."
So says a seasoned traveller who knows their stuff – they helped us create this tour of a nation undergoing profound change.
We've worked with Exodus, specialists in global travel who share your desire to find out more about the culture and traditions of a land beyond our borders. The results are stunning.
Your chance to:
See the mystical temples of Bagan
Watch sunrise at U-Bein Bridge
Float amongst villages on Inle Lake
Enjoy 13 nights in hotels, all en suite
All breakfasts and 1 lunch
All transport and listed activities
Tour leader throughout
Flights from London (if booking incl. flights)
Three internal flights
What's not included
Single accommodation (available on request) from £530
Visas or vaccinations
Nearly all nationalities require a visa to enter Myanmar (Burma), and this must be obtained prior to departure. Passengers without a visa will not be allowed to enter the country. Further details here.
There are no mandatory vaccination requirements. Recommended vaccinations are: Polio, Tetanus, Diphtheria, Typhoid, Hepatitis A and Yellow Fever. Malaria prophylaxis is essential and we suggest that you seek advice from your GP or travel health clinic about which malaria tablets to take.
Burma has a monsoon climate with three main seasons. The hottest period is between February and May, with little or no rain. The rainy season exists from May to October and dry, cooler weather from October to February.
The country is relatively new to tourism, so its infrastructure is fairly underdeveloped. Travel time might be slower, and services not as instant and comprehensive as you may be used to.
There is no global mobile phone coverage in Burma so your phone will not work.
Internet access is available in Rangoon and that coverage is spreading, but the connection can be intermittent and slow.
Burma's food is a diverse blend of Chinese, Indian and South East Asian influences, with many regional variations of their 'standard' dishes. Rice is at the core of most Burmese food, and although vegetarian food is available the choice of dishes is often limited. Curries are very common as are noodles and soup. In the bigger hotels, some Western food is available.
Please inform us of any special dietary requests before departure.
Accommodation is mostly in standard hotels. Because of the surge in tourism since 2011 some areas are experiencing a shortage of venues. This has increased the price, and the quality may vary considerably from night to night.
Overall you should be prepared for the service and quality of hotels to be less than in neighbouring south east Asian countries such as Vietnam and Cambodia.
Day 1 Depart London.
Day 2 Arrive Rangoon (now Yangon).
Day 3 City tour including the incredible Shwedagon Pagoda and old colonial areas of this former capital.
Day 4 Fly to Bagan (Pagan) with its ancient temples and pagodas; free time to explore until sunset visit.
Day 5 Full day tour to explore the largest temples as well as some of the smaller ones.
Day 6 Morning sightseeing at Bagan; free afternoon.
Day 7 Fly to Mandalay; free afternoon to explore the city; visit Mandalay Hill for sunset.
Day 8 Visit U Bein Bridge at sunrise; day exploring the countryside visiting Mingun and Sagaing villages by boat.
Day 9 Transfer to Kalaw, a former colonial British hill station.
Day 10 Moderate trek around Kalaw past minority villages.
Day 11 Drive to Inle Lake visiting Pindaya Caves en route.
Day 12 Cruise on Inle Lake; visit local craft industries and floating markets, Inthein pagodas and see the famous leg-rowing fishermen.
Day 13 Cycle to minority villages around Inle Lake; there will be a support vehicle for those who do not wish to cycle.
Day 14 Fly to Rangoon; free afternoon.
Day 15 Depart Rangoon
Morning at leisure; depart afternoon.
Day 16 Arrive London
This is a small group guided holiday. The group is usually between 4 and 16 in size, with an average of 12 like-minded clients booking individually, in a couple or as friends together.
You are reasonably fit, enjoy the outdoors and are looking for some exercise. Some previous experience is preferable for activity-based trips.
Prices start from £2,499 per person, including return flights from a London airport and transfers at your destination.