We’ll start our Mandalay tour by travelling 20 kilometres southwest of the city to arrive at pagoda nirvana, or Sagaing as it’s known on the map. Sagaing is an important religious centre that’s home to dozens of monasteries and hundreds of monks. Pagoda towers dot the pretty landscape to make for picture-perfect, bucket list-inspired photography.
We will visit the university of Sitagu to learn more about Buddhism and the pursuit of spiritual enlightenment, before making a stop at Myasetkyar Monastery, famous for its giant (and we mean huge!) standing Buddha statue. Here we will observe the monk’s lunchtime parade and rituals.
Then we’ll whisk you off on the public ferry and into a horse-drawn cart, which will take us to Inwa, the ancient capital of Myanmar on the other side of the Irrawaddy river. By now you will have worked up an appetite so we will stop at a riverside restaurant to sample some local dishes such as mohinga (rice noodle and fish soup) and laphet thohk (pickled tea leaf salad).
Inwa used to be the capital of Myanmar, so it is rich in history. There are some stunning monasteries and pagoda complexes to explore, including the Yadana Hsimi Pagodas, a little tumbledown roofless collection of several stupas and three Buddhas. Much of the former royal city has been reclaimed by mother nature and agriculture, so as well as weaving our way around crumbling architectural gems, we will also walk through luscious fields of banana trees and see rice being sown in one of the paddies.
Our lost stop of the day is Amarapura, another former capital known for its silk and cotton-weaving industry. Here we will navigate one of the most photographed sites in Myanmar, the Ubein Bridge — an impressive teak structure that claims to be the longest wooden bridge in the world at 1.2 kilometres. The monks who use the bridge to cross Lake Taungthaman every day often take time to talk to visitors in order to practise their language skills.
Then, a brilliant orange sunset awaits you. This is the time to reflect on your day, gazing at the antiquated bridge with the sun setting behind it. One of the fundamental teachings of Buddhism is to develop the mind. Take this Mandalay tour with our amazing local guide and give your mind the workout it deserves
Inclusions: Local English-speaking guide, transportation, tea and water, lunch.
Exclusions: Additional food and drinks, souvenirs and personal shopping, tips/gratuities for your guide.
Dress standard: As we will visit a religious pagoda, please wear clothing that covers your shoulders and knees.
Your Trip: For your Urban Adventure you will be in a small group of a maximum of 12 people.
Confirmation of booking: If you have your voucher, your booking is confirmed. We'll see you at the start point. Get in touch if you have any concerns or require more information via the email address or phone number (business hours only) on your voucher.
Child Policy: This is a child-friendly tour. Children between the ages of 6 and 11 inclusively are permitted on this tour at the rate listed above. Please select ‘child’ above when booking. Children under the age of 6 are permitted to join this tour free of charge. Please inform us at the time of booking if you’ll be bringing a child under the age of 6. You can do so in the special request box on the checkout page.