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Mandalay to Hsipaw: Unveiling Myanmar's Ethnic Tribes by Rail

TERMS AND CONDITIONS

Price is based on double or twin hotel room occupancy and includes accommodation, transfers, car/driver, English-speaking guide, activities and entrance fees, breakfasts and some casual lunches while touring. Flights and optional special activities will be quoted separately. Most personal expenses, including dinners, alcoholic beverages, spa treatments and gratuities can be paid on the spot while traveling. Prices may vary depending on season, choice of accommodation and other factors.

FROM $2,300 PER PERSON
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DURATION

4 days | 3 nights

DESTINATIONS

Myanmar

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HIGHLIGHTS

  • Get acquainted with the lush Burmese countryside as you travel the same ancient road used for centuries by Chinese and Burmese traders.
  • Take a train ride and enjoy an elevated view of the Gokteik Railway Viaduct to Kyaukme
  • Visit Hsipaw’s early morning market and see the local tribes in their traditional costume

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

Get a rare and beautiful cultural glimpse into the daily lives of the ethnic tribes occupying rural Myanmar. Visit Pyi Oo Lwin, Gokhtike Railway Viaduct, Kyaukme and Hsipaw. Travel as ancient traders did, taking the same route they did during bustling economic times. Become one with nature and tradition as you embark on this 4-day journey through Myanmar’s ethnic tribal culture.

DAY-TO-DAY

DAY 1: Pyin Oo Lwin

Watch in awe as you drive through the lush, green countryside to the classic British hill station, used during British rule - Pyin Oo Lwin. Check out the quaint European-style town as you walk through the local market and snap a picture with the old clock tower. Tour the town in a charming antique horse-drawn cart. Stop and smell the fresh florals as you visit the National Kandawgyi Gardens. The soft, green carpeted land is covered in a multitude of colorful flowers, dense forests and cascading lakes. Spend a quiet evening at the Kandawgyi Lodge in Pyi Oo Lwin.

DAY 2: Pyi Oo Lwin - Gokteik Viaduct - Hsipaw

Head to the Pyi Oo Lwin Railway Station, climb aboard, and embark on a train ride you’ll never forget. Passing above the Gokteik Railway Viaduct to Kyaukme - you have the same experience many tradesmen did as they passed between Mandalay and China in past times. At its completion in 1901, the Gokteik Viaduct was the second largest bridge in the world. Once you reach your destination, continue on by car to the historic town of Hsipaw and visit the most revered pagoda in Northern Shan - Bawku Pagoda. Spend a restful night in Mr. Charles Guest House in Hsipaw.

DAY 3: Hsipaw

Make it an early morning and explore the incredible, one-of-a-kind morning market hosted by the local ethnic tribes. The market starts at 3:30 AM and wraps up just three hours later. Later, explore Hsipaw before taking a few small treks to the outlying villages inhabited by the ethnic minorities in the area. Catch the sun’s final rays as you watch it set from your prime seat atop Nine Buddha Hill (Koe Su Mountain). Retire back to the guesthouse after a full day of cultural exploration.

DAY 4: Hsipaw - Kyaukme - Mandalay

Journey back to Mandalay on a 5.5-hour car ride along the famous Burmese road well-trodden by Chinese and Burmese traders traveling between the two countries to exchange goods and other fineries. Pause your journey to visit the charming, small town of Kyaukme, a town settled by Shan, Chinese and Indian traders. Stop by the local houses to purchase traditional products created by the families living there. Arrive in Mandalay in the late afternoon and check into a hotel to relax before your journey home the next day.

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