Vietnam Explorer (15 days / 14 nights )

Day 1 Phnom Penh - Arrival (G)

Upon arrival at Phnom Penh International Airport, you will be welcomed and transferred to your hotel in the heart of the city. Take a cyclo tour of Phnom Penh and visit Wat Phnom, before cruising along the lively riverfront to the Royal Palace. Continue on to the National Museum, which was built in traditional Khmer style. It houses the world’s foremost collection of ancient Khmer artistic, archaeological, and religious artifacts from the 4th to the 13th centuries. Enjoy an atmospheric sunset river cruise and watch how Phnom Penh’s popular riverfront awakens to life.

Overnight in Phnom Penh.

Day 2 Phnom Penh (B, L, G)

This morning, gain insight into Cambodia’s recent dark history on a visit to the remarkable Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum, housed in the former school that was taken over by the Khmer Rouge and used as its main detention and torture center named ‘S-21′. Further visit the Killing Fields of Choeung Ek. A grim, but important visit that will allow you to dig below the surface and understand Cambodia better. From here it is close to Stung Meanchey, a local neighborhood that is home to the humanitarian organization Pour un Sourire d’Enfant (for the smile of a child) that provides education and job training to street children that used to be scavenging the municipal dump.

Overnight in Phnom Penh

Day 3 Phnom Penh - Siem Reap (B, L, G) by road

Transfer overland to Siem Reap (5 hours), stop en-route for a visit of the Skun Spider Sanctuary. Upon your arrival Siem Reap, you will explore the temples of Angkor, the ancient capital of the Khmer empire by tuk tuk. Start at the ancient city of Angkor Thom. From here, continue to Bayon Temple in the exact center of the city. This 12th century masterpiece is a study in grandeur and is well-known for its 54 towers with enigmatic faces representing the 54 provinces of the Great Khmer Empire. Visit the magnificent Angkor Wat. Built during the reign of King Suryavarman II in the early 12th century, it is constructed following the model of the temple mountain symbolizing the Mount Meru, home of the gods.

Overnight in Siem Reap.

Day 4 Siem Reap (B, L, G)

This morning, feel like an explorer when you discover the completely overgrown temple, Beng Mealea. Only recently discovered, thus accessible Beng Mealea is one of the very few temples that actually give the opportunity to climb through it. Take a boat trip on the Tonlé Sap Lake, where you will have the opportunity to learn about life on the lake. Board a local boat and visit Kampong Kleang, a village where you will see houses on stilts that are submerged when Tonlé Sap Lake extends.

Overnight in Siem Reap

Day 5 Siem Reap - Bangkok - Yangon (B, G)

After breakfast this morning, transfer to the airport for your flight to Bangkok to connect your flight to Yangon. Yangon, formerly known as Rangoon, is a relatively quiet and charming city. Its impressive colonial and spiritual heritage makes it one of the most fascinating cities in Southeast Asia. Upon arrival, you will be met and transferred to the hotel. 

Late this afternoon, visit Shwedagon Pagoda, the most revered Buddhist temple in Myanmar.

Overnight in Yangon

Day 6 Yangon - Heho - Inle Lake (B, L, G)

After early breakfast at the hotel, transfer to the airport for the flight to Heho.

Board a private motorboat to head out to Inle Lake, pass villages built on stilts over the lake, inhabited by the local Intha people. Observe the leg-rowing fishermen and see their floating gardens. Visit Nga Hpe Chaung Monastery, which houses dozens of Shan Buddha Images, but is more famous for its unique ‘jumping cats’. Oo Pagoda, the lake’s main sanctuary, which contains five sacred Buddha images covered in gold leaf. Explore the local crafts of Inle Lake with a stop at the weaving village of Inpawkhone and a cheroot factory, where the typical Burmese cigars are made by hand.

Overnight in Inle Lake.

Day 7 Inle Lake - In Dein - Inle Lake (B, L, G)

Visit the lake’s morning market. The market rotates its location around the lake’s villages in a 5 day rhythm and is visited by lake inhabitants and surrounding hill tribes who come to sell and trade their wares. From the middle of the lake, continue down a small canal leading to the Pa-oh village of In Dein. Explore the area on foot, strolling around the village, visiting a local school, and wander through the beautiful Alaung Sitthou area.

After enjoying your visit to In Dein, return to your boat. Continue along the lake for additional sightseeing before returning to your hotel this afternoon.

Overnight in Inle Lake.

Day 8 Inle Lake - Heho - Mandalay (B, L, G)

Enjoy a leisurely breakfast and morning around the Inle Lake before transferring to the Heho Airport this afternoon. After the 1.5 hour flight to Mandalay, you will be transferred to your hotel (approximately 1 hour drive) Mandalay is the cultural center of Myanmar and its skilled craftsmen once supplied the Royal Court.

After relaxing and freshening up at your hotel, drive to Mandalay Hill to watch the sun set over the city and the Irrawaddy River.

Overnight in Mandalay

Day 9 Mandalay - Amarapura - Ava - Sagaing - Mandalay (B, L, G)

After breakfast at the hotel, depart for an excursion around Mandalay to explore the former capitals of Amarapura, Ava and Sagaing. Begin your morning attending a special ceremony in Amarapura. Witness the alms collection at Mahagandayon monastery. Continue to Ava, the capital from 14th to 18th centuries, and travel by traditional horse and carriage to visit the old wooden Bagaya Monastery and the remains of the town’s Royal Palace and fort.

This afternoon, cross the bridge over the Irrawaddy River to Sagaing. Sagaing Hill is widely regarded as the religious center of Myanmar and is home to 3,000 monks and 100 meditation centers.

Overnight in Mandalay.

Day 10 Mandalay - Mingun - Mandalay (B, L, G)

Transfer to the Mandalay jetty and board a private local boat for a 1-hr cruise on the Irrawaddy River to Mingun. Visit the main sites of Mingun beginning with the famous Mingun Pahtodawqyi and the beautiful white Hsinbyume Pagoda whose distinctive style is meant to resemble the mythical Mount Meru. Continue on to the Mingun Bell which weighs 90 tons and is considered the world’s largest uncracked ringing bell.

Return to Mandalay and visit Mahamuni Pagoda. Continue to Kuthodaw Pagoda, whose 729 marble stone slabs of Buddhist scriptures have earned it the title ‘World’s Biggest Book’. Continue to Shwenandaw Monastery, the only remaining building from the 19th century Royal Palace.

Overnight in Mandalay

Day 11 Mandalay - Monywa (B, L, G)

This morning, depart Mandalay for a 3-hour drive to Monywa, a typical Burmese town on the banks of the Chindwin River. On the way, visit Thanboddhay Pagoda, a huge Buddhist temple covered with more than 500,000 Buddha images. Also, stop at Boditahtaung Pagoda which houses the largest reclining Buddha image in Myanmar, at 100m long and 27m high.

This afternoon, cross the Chindwin River by ferry and proceed to Po Win Taung by local open-air jeeps. After visiting Po Win Taung, continue a few hundred meters away to Shwe Ba Taung.

Overnight in Monywa

Day 12 Monyway - Pakkoku - Bagan (B, L, G)

Depart Monywa after breakfast and travel along the quiet eastern river bank. This ‘road less traveled’ takes you through traditional villages where you may see farmers climbing palm trees to extract juice from which they will produce palm tree sugar. Stop at Ah Nyeint, Ah Myint and “Ma U Ah Le” villages for an opportunity to learn about the lifestyle and culture of the countryside residents.

Resume your journey to Pakokku. Enjoy a short rickshaw ride through town before continuing to the port at Pakkoku. This afternoon we board a local boat in Pakkoku for a leisure, two hour cruise downriver to Bagan. Upon reaching the shores of Bagan, transfer to the hotel.

Overnight in Bagan.

Day 13 Bagan (B, L, G)

Today explore the wonders of Bagan with a full-day tour. Your journey begins with a visit to the golden stupa of Shwezigon Pagoda for an introduction in to Bagan’s rich history. Then, visit the nearby Wetkyi-In Gubyaukgyi, a cave temple with exquisite jataka mural paintings and the elegant Htilominlo Temple. This afternoon, visit Ananda Temple, an architectural masterpiece and one of Bagan’s most beautiful temples. Neighboring Ananda Okkyaung is one of the few surviving brick monasteries from the early Bagan period filled with intricate paintings. From here, travel by horse cart for a tour passing Thatbyinnyu, the highest temple in Bagan, massive Dhammayangyi Temple, noted for its remarkable brickwork, and Sulamani Temple. If time permits, enjoy an unforgettable sunset over the plains from the upper terrace of one of the temples.

Overnight in Bagan.

Day 14 Bagan - Yangon (B, L, G)

After breakfast, transfer to Ngat Pyit Taung Monastery and explore the temple’s caves to observe about local tradition and spiritual beliefs of the Burmese. Then, visit the Monastic Primary School where you can visit with the local children who are studying their lessons and offer a donation towards their education and school supplies.

This afternoon, continue to the rural village of Minnanthu, one of Bagan’s least visited areas. Here you will explore temples such as Payathonzu, with its unusual architecture and Tantric Buddhism influence, Lemyentha and Nandamannya.

Late this afternoon, transfer to the Nyaung Oo airport for the flight to Yangon. Upon arrival, transfer to the hotel.

Overnight in Yangon

Day 15 Yangon - Departure (B, G)

Depending on flight time, there is an option to take a ride on Yangon’s Circle Train in the morning. Transfer to Yangon Railway station to take local circular train journey to the outskirts of town (45 minutes ride).This is a unique opportunity to observe the lively and colorful life of the rural Burmese people. Disembark to visit Insein market where a variety of street vendors sell colorful wares.

This afternoon, visit Bogyoke Market, formerly known as Scott’s Market, where you can browse through the wide selection of Myanmar handicrafts and other goods before transferring to Yangon International Airport for your onward flight.

The package includes:

– Private transportation.

– English speaking guide

– Hotel accommodation: Three-star hotel (Twin sharing)

– Meals as mentioned in the itinerary

– Entrance tickets as the itinerary

– Fresh water (2 bottles/pax/day)

The package excludes:

– Domestic air ticket

– Drinks, tips, personal expenses

– Unmentioned meals

– Travel insurance

– International bank fee for transferring money

– Credit card payment: 3% will be added in total amount

– Single Supplement charge

– Others not mentioned above


VNM01: Experience of Vietnam

VNM02: Vietnam – North and South

VNM03: Know about Vietnam

VNM04: Understand Vietnam

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