The Golden Land


Onboard a traditionally-designed Burmese ship, sail your way over 10 nights along the languid Irrawaddy, still the main highway for many locals, catching glimpses of unforgettable sights and peaceful rural scenes of the heartlands of old Burma

tour duration 14 Days from
tour price 4,890pp
tour type Private Tour

Places Visited

UK - Rangoon (1N) - Irrawaddy Cruise (10N) - Rangoon (1N) - UK

Tour Highlights

Explore the fascinating collection of Buddhist sights in Rangoon
Cruise up the Irrawaddy River, the lifeline of Burma
Learn about the ancient civilisation of the Pyu people
Marvel as red-robed monks cross the U Bein Bridge
Watch local Burmese life along the Irrawaddy River
Get lost in the enchanting Temples of Bagan

Days 1-2 Fly to Rangoon
Fly overnight to Rangoon (Yangon). Depending on your time of arrival into Rangoon, the rest of the day is yours to start soaking up the local culture. Rangoon, Burma’s capital until its relocation to Naypyidaw in 2006, is the heart of Burma’s spiritual life and a bustling city full of crumbling colonial charm.
Days 1-2 Fly to Rangoon
Day 3 Journey to Mandalay
This morning, transfer to the airport for your flight to Mandalay. On arrival, board your Irrawaddy River cruise ship for lunch. Mandalay was the last royal capital of Burma before the country was annexed by the British. Mandalay is now considered the centre of Burmese culture and its most important economic hub. This afternoon visit the Mahamuni Pagoda, a major pilgrimage site, and the Shwe-in-bin Monastery. Continue to Amarapura to see Bagaya Kyaung, a large teak Monastery and cross over the U Bein Bridge, the longest teak bridge in the world. Return to your cruise ship this evening. Sip on a welcome cocktail and take in your new surroundings before settling down to dinner served in the bistro-style dining room. (B,L,D)
Day 3 Journey to Mandalay
Day 4 Ava and Yandabo
Cruise downstream on the peaceful Irrawaddy River as you pass views of riverside pottery villages, chanting monks and temples dotted on the bank sides. We will start by exploring the ancient capital of Ava before continuing further downstream to Yandabo, a small village which specialising in making pots out of the clay from the river banks. Visit the Pandaw School, built from donations made by Pandaw customers. (B,L,D)
Day 4 Ava and Yandabo
Day 5 Bagan's Temples
Today visit Bagan. The former seat of the Kingdom of Bagan, this area is famed for its hypnotising assembly of over 2,000 temples and is often compared to Cambodia’s Angkor Temples for its cultural significance and architecture. Today you will explore a selection of the temples before visiting a lacquer workshop. (B,L,D)
Day 5 Bagan's Temples
Day 6 Bagan and Salé
Ascend Tan Chi Taung Mountain for a spectacular sunrise over Bagan. Continue on to Salé where you will visit a number of teak monasteries, including the Yout Saun Kyaung. Explore an area famed for its splendid colonial-style houses. (B,L,D)
Day 6 Bagan and Salé
Day 7 Magwe
Visit Magwe, where you will visit the magnificent Myat Thalon Pagoda which is constructed out of solid gold bricks. The Pagoda also offers fantastic views of the Irrawaddy River below from its hillside setting. (B,L,D)
Day 7 Magwe
Day 8 Minhla and Gwechaung
Visit the 18th century forts of Minhla and Gwechaung. Constructed under the supervision of two Italian engineers, these forts were built in the 18th century as a guard against pending British invasion. Later visit a local market before taking a horse and cart ride into the neighbouring countryside. (B,L,D)
Day 8 Minhla and Gwechaung
Day 9 Prome
Visit Prome, the former centre of the Pyu civilisation, also known as the ‘Magical City.’ An important city since the founding of the Bagan Kingdom in the 9th century, Prome remained important to the British and the Irrawaddy Flotilla Company as an important trading post between north and south Burma. Explore the ancient Buddhist artefacts in the nearby museum. (B,L,D)
Day 9 Prome
Day 10 Akauk Taung
Journey south of Prome, and visit the dozens of Buddha images carved into Akauk Taung (Tax Mountain). This natural wonder is named Tax Mountain after toll-takers who would carve Buddhist images into the sides of the mountain between taxing boats travelling down the Irrawaddy. (B,L,D)
Day 10 Akauk Taung
Day 11 Danubyu
Explore delta creeks and stop at Danubyu, a lesser-known town with a busy port and bustling market. Maha Bandula, commander-in-chief of the Burmese Army, made Danubyu his headquarters during the First Anglo-Burmese War. (B,L,D)
Day 11 Danubyu
Day 12 Twante
Travel along the Twante Canal which joins the Irrawaddy with the Yangon River, passing idyllic vistas of rickety wooden fishing boats, lush green fields and Buddhist statues. Stop to explore the town of Twante. The town is noted for its pottery and cotton production and was one of the former stations of George Orwell whilst he was a police officer in Burma. Continue on to the Yangon River. (B,L,D)
Day 12 Twante
Day 13 Rangoon
Disembark in Rangoon. This afternoon visit the golden Shwedagon Pagoda. This is Burma’s most sacred Buddhist site and is purported to have four relics of former Buddha enshrined within. Legend says that the Pagoda is over 2,500 years old, making it the oldest pagoda in the world; however archaeologists argue that the current structure was built between the 6th and 10th-centuries under the Mon people. Watch as young monks chant in a circle round the stupa whilst visitors pray towards this delightfully spiritual monument. (B)
Day 13 Rangoon
Day 14 Fly Rangoon to UK
Fly to the UK, arriving home the same or following day. (B)
Day 14 Fly Rangoon to UK

Also Available

Tailor Your Tour

If you like most of the itinerary which we have suggested but you'd like to change the route and the accommodation, speak to our specialist Tailormade team, who can build your perfect itinerary based around where you would like to go, what you would like to see and how much you'd like to spend. Just call us on 0800 9884 888 and we'll help plan your dream holiday.

04-Dec > 17-Dec - £5,190 BOOK NOW

Additional Price Information:

Based on London Heathrow departures
Subject to availability
Single supplement from £490
Sole traveller supplement from £560
Land only from £4,240(Rangoon-Rangoon)
Includes crew gratuities
Excludes tips to tour guides & driver

01-Jan > 14-Jan - £4,890 BOOK NOW
27-Jan > 09-Feb - £4,890 BOOK NOW
22-Feb > 07-Mar - £4,890 BOOK NOW
20-Mar > 02-Apr - £4,940 BOOK NOW
21-Jul > 03-Aug - £4,990 BOOK NOW
14-Oct > 27-Oct - £4,940 BOOK NOW
09-Nov > 22-Nov - £4,940 BOOK NOW
05-Dec > 18-Dec - £5,090 BOOK NOW

Additional Price Information:

Based on London Heathrow departures
Subject to availability
Single supplement from £490
Sole traveller supplement from £560
Land only from £4,240(Rangoon-Rangoon)
Includes crew gratuities
Excludes tips to tour guides & driver

04-Jan > 17-Jan - £5,340 BOOK NOW
30-Jan > 12-Feb - £5,340 BOOK NOW
25-Feb > 10-Mar - £5,390 BOOK NOW
23-Mar > 05-Apr - £5,390 BOOK NOW

Additional Price Information:

Based on London Heathrow departures
Subject to availability
Single supplement from £490
Sole traveller supplement from £560
Land only from £4,240(Rangoon-Rangoon)
Includes crew gratuities
Excludes tips to tour guides & driver

Wendy Wu Tours, inspect all of our hotels to ensure they meet the high levels of service which we require for our guests. If the hotels details below for your tour are not available, hotels of a similar standard will be used.

Summit Parkview Hotel
Summit Parkview Hotel - Yangon, Burma (2 Nights)
hotel star rating

Summit Parkview Yangon offers modern designed rooms with complimentary Wifi. The en-suite rooms are fitted with air conditioning, flat screen satellite television and tea making facilities. As well as a 24 hour reception desk, there is an outdoor pool, an onsite restaurant, a bar with evening entertainment and a fitness centre.



Bangkok Extension

Bangkok Extension

tour duration 4 Days from tour price 380pp
Hua Hin Beach Stay - 4D/3N

Hua Hin Beach Stay - 4D/3N

tour duration 4 Days from tour price 270pp

A visa is required by all nationalities. A single entry visa should be arranged in advance of travel.
Unlike many other tour operators, we include your entry visas in the price of our tour. We handle the entire visa process – all you need to do is fill out the form and send your passport to us. We are always on hand to help you with any questions or queries you might have when completing the form. 

Phone Calls
International and domestic calls can be made from your hotel room. To call the UK the international access code is 00, followed by the country code 44, then the local area code (omitting the first 0), then the number. To call Wendy Wu Tours it is 00 44 207 403 7860. Emergency 24 hour telephone (out of office hours) is 00 44 7984 041 625.
 
Mobile Phones
Mobile phones are growing in popularity and you will find high quality coverage. There are active roaming agreements with all phone carriers; however SMS and call rates can be expensive. We recommend that you contact your mobile supplier if you intend to use international roaming during your holiday and ensure you investigate all associated costs before you leave the UK.
 
Internet & Email
Internet cafes can be found in all major cities and even in some small towns. This is often the easiest and cheapest way to stay in touch. Most hotels have a business centre with internet access, but at a slightly higher rate. Some hotels may have Wi-Fi which usually comes at an additional cost and may only be available in hotel lobbies. 

Tipping is an expected element in the tourism industry today and Burma is no exception. Many passengers are often uncertain of how much to tip so we have established a tipping system whereby every passenger gives a set amount to the National Escort who will distribute the amount appropriately. On multi-country tips, this amount will be paid in stages on arrival in each country. If there is no National Escort, you will need to give your money to your Local Guides and tipping amounts for each city will be shown in your final itinerary. The amount for the kitty is calculated for each tour depending on the length, group size, and services used during the trip.
 
We will indicate the tipping amounts in your final documents for guidance.

Shopping can be a fun and entertaining component to any travel adventure. In keeping with most people’s interests whilst on holiday, your tour will include a reasonable number of opportunities to shop for local goods and souvenirs.
 
We have included visits to establishments that not only provide an opportunity to purchase a locally produced, great-value souvenir; but you’ll witness first-hand how these local products are made, their history and how they support the local economy. We are aware that people like to take home souvenirs, so we endeavour to ensure the shops you visit have a reputation for quality, honesty, and authenticity – we do our best to ensure that you don’t get ripped off. 

The cost of all meals is included in your group tour cost. Breakfast is a combination of local and western food, usually served buffet style at the hotel you are staying in. Lunches and dinners consist of traditional cuisine and are served at reputable local restaurants. As is traditional in this region, lunch and dinner consists of small dishes of local cuisine which is then placed on the table for everyone to share so you can experience the variety of speciality dishes. The amount served is more than ample for the whole group. We aim to cater to the tastes of the majority of people and so the food is not too spicy or unusual in taste.
 
Drinks will be at each tour members’ own expense and paid for at the end of each meal. Beer is widely available and cheap. Western style wine is very expensive to import and is not widely available except at upmarket restaurants. Bottled drinking water, soft drinks, and fruit juices are also widely available – remember that you should only have ice or fruit juices from a trusted restaurant, where they will use boiled or bottled water.
Due to the French colonial influence in some Southeast Asian countries, black tea (commonly referred to as ‘lip-ton’ by the locals), coffee, and baguettes are available in most places. However, the local style is to have sweet condensed milk with their tea and coffee. Fresh dairy milk is not usually served but many restaurants will provide this if requested. ‘Cafe Sua-da’ (or iced coffee with milk) is a favourite choice amongst the locals.

What's Included

International flights & current taxes
Domestic transportation
Accommodation
Touring with guides & entrance fees
Visa fees for UK & EU passport holders
Meals as stated
Local soft drinks, local beer andlocal spirits on the cruise
All excursions
Crew gratuities
Use of bikes on board

Why Book This Tour?

This tour is suitable for those with a reasonable amount of time to travel and who are interested in travelling the lengths of Burma. Touring will be done primarily by boat on the Irrawaddy River.

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