Yangon, Bagan, Mandalay and Inle Lake are four tourist highlights of Burma. As a result, tours from Yangon to Bagan, Mandalay and Inle Lake may be the most “classic” itinerary chosen by a lot of travelers when they tour Myanmar. Here we recommend a sample 8-day itinerary, covering typical attractions and activities in 4 “classic” destinations as a useful reference for you.
Day 1-2: Yangon
Your tours from Yangon to Bagan, Mandalay and Inle Lake will start by your arrival at the Yangon international Airport, one of 6 allowable ports to international tourists with Myanmar eVisa.
Yangon is the former capital and the largest city in Burma. After checking in your hotel and relaxing, you can take a sightseeing tour around the city. Shwedagon Pagoda, nicknamed ‘” the jewel” of Yangon and considered as the symbol of Yangon tourism, is the most must-visit destination. Legend says that the 99-meter-high pagoda with gilded stupas was built more than 2,500 years ago, which means it’s the oldest pagoda in Myanmar. Shwedagon Pagoda is also considered the most important and sacred in Burma. Besides, you can visit Sule Pagoda, Chinatown Yangon, Kandawgyi Park, National Museum of Myanmar, etc.
On next day of your tours from Yangon to Bagan, Mandalay and Inle Lake, we suggest going on a bicycle tour with Uncharted Horizons Myanmar ($40 USD), a social enterprise that runs tours to remote areas of Yangon where you can get a glimpse of local life while supporting some great causes.
Day 3-4: Bagan
There are 12 daily flights from Yangon to Nyaung U Airport, the closest airport to Bagan. Each of the flights lasts 80 minutes on average. After arriving in Bagan, you’ll have to pay $20 (or 27,000 kyats) for the entrance fee to the Bagan Archaeological Zone.
The ancient city of Bagan is home to more than 2,200 Buddhist sites, about 20 of which are more popular with tourists. During your Myanmar travel, to get around the city and admire majestic pagodas and temples, you can choose among a variety of transportation means, from taxi to horse-drawn cart. If you travel in a group of 3 or 4, taxis may be the best choice. If you travel on your own, hiring a horse-drawn cart or tuk-tuk to explore the ancient city will bring about a memorable experience for you. Note that you have no much time for Bagan (2 out of 8 days of your tours from Yangon to Bagan, Mandalay and Inle Lake), so choose the most typical pagodas to visit, such as are Ananda Temple, Shwesandaw Pagoda, Dhammayangyi Temple and Shwezigon Pagoda.
Day 5-6: Mandalay
After two days visiting Bagan, it’s time to travel to Mandalay. Flights are available on a frequent schedule throughout the day; the journey between Nyaung U and Mandalay Airport takes just half an hour.
The 5th day of your tours from Yangon to Bagan, Mandalay and Inle Lake is spent traveling around the city and visiting the typical attractions and a religious site such as Golden Palace Monastery, Mahamuni Pagoda, Mahar Aung Myay Market and Mandalay Hill.
Next day, you can explore three townships surrounding Mandalay. In Amarapura you will be able to admire the famous U Bein Bridge, a long teak bridge that becomes a popular rendezvous place at sunset. In Sagaing there are many temples, most of which are on Sagaing Hill. The ascent of 300 steps will allow you to enjoy a panorama of the valley and River Irrawaddy. Finally, you can visit Innwa in a horse-drawn carriage that will take you through 4 attractions: Bagaya Kyunag Monastery, Palace Nanmyin Watchtower, Mahar Aung Mye Bonzon Monastery and Brick Temple Complex Yadan Sinme.
Day 7-8: Inle Lake
From Mandalay, you can take a domestic flight to Heho Airport, the closest airport to Inle Lake, at the price of around $75. It will take an hour by taxi and cost $20 to reach the Inle Lake from Heho Airport.
On the 7th of your tours from Yangon to Bagan, Mandalay and Inle Lake, you can take the boat out to Inle Lake. This is the best way to explore this incredible fresh water lake. The boat costs only 20000 Kyat and can fit 4. The driver will take you on the lake and stops off at various places, some touristy, like a silk factory, and some not so much, like a local village and beautiful array of pagodas (Indein).
On the last day, we recommend a hiking or cycling tour around Inle Lake to admire incredible views of Myanmar’s beautiful countryside and explore the culture of ethnic minority groups.
Above the 8-day itinerary, we recommend for your tours from Yangon to Bagan, Mandalay and Inle Lake. Depending on your particular conditions, you can add or cut down the number of days as well as change activities to be most suitable to your Burma tours with your wants and taste.