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17-Day Bike Soft Expedition
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Overview

This is essentially a soft adventure tour created for bikers who also wish to participate in other physical activities including trekking.

A good physical condition is necessary to complete the activities in this program. The day to day itinerary can be adapted to the fitness level of the traveler. The Asian Tour guide will discuss the day to day activities with the guests. We will provide Chinese made mountain bikes of average quality with a minimum of 10 gears and saddles that are adjustable to the height of the traveler. Guests who wish to bring their own bikes may do so and there will be an additional charge to transport the bikes by plane from destination to destination. During all biking tours travelers will be accompanied by a support car and may decide to do part of the journey in the car should they feel tired or strained. Travel insurance is excluded from our arrangements and Asian Tour will deny all claims arising from a lack of insurance by the passenger.

Recommended travel period : from October to May

 

Day 1

Arrive Yangon

Day 2

Yangon

Day 3

Yangon - Heho (By Am Flight) - Ayetharyar-Inle Lake

Day 4

Inle Lake

Day 5

Inle Lake

Day 6

Inle Lake - Aung Ban - Pindaya

Day 7

Pindaya

Day 8

Pindaya - Ywa Ngan - Myo Gyi - Mandalay

Day 9

Mandalay

Day 10

Mandalay - Pyin Oo Lwin (By Train)

Day 11

Pyin Oo Lwin - Mandalay
Day 12 Mandalay/Mingun/Sagaing/Ava/Amarapura
Day 13 Mandalay - Bagan (By Boat)
Day 14 Bagan
Day 15 Bagan
Day 16 Bagan - Yangon (By Am Flight)
Day 17 Depart Yangon

Itinerary

Day 1        Arrive Yangon

Upon arrival at YANGON airport you will be welcomed by our Asian Tour guide and transferred to your hotel.

Overnight stay in Yangon.

 

Day 2        Yangon

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After breakfast pick up at your hotel and take a local Taxi to the landmark STRAND HOTEL. Have a look at PANSODAN JETTY to observe the busy life on Yangon River. Start your walking tour to PANSODAN STREET famous for some of Yangon's most impressive colonial buildings and to MAHABANDOOLA ROAD from where you have the perfect view on SULE PADOGA, CITY HALL and HIGH COURT. Cross through the greens of MAHA BANDOOLA GARDEN before discovering the gold shops of SHWE BONTHA STREET. Go further on to KON ZAY DAN STREET and SHWEDAGON PAGODA ROAD before crossing through the animated INDIAN DISTRICT of ANAWRAHTA ROAD to reach the HINDU TEMPLE. Continue to 31st STREET well known for second hand book shops as well as typical historical shop houses and to the BOGYOKE (SCOTTS) MARKET with hundreds of food, clothes, handicrafts and gems stores.
After lunch break take the circular "commuter" train from SCOTT MARKET station to HANTHAWADDY station (about 20 minutes, note that the trains are very basic, often crowded and not reliable). Pick-up at the station and proceed to one of the world’s most spectacular monuments, the SHWEDAGON PAGODA for an extended visit. Return to the hotel.
In the early evening drive to the busy area of Chinatown where the pavement turns into a NIGHT MARKET selling all kinds of goods. Drive back to your hotel via photo stop at the illuminated SULE PAGODA.

Overnight stay in Yangon.

 

Day 3        Yangon - Heho (By Am Flight) - Ayethaya - Inle Lake

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After breakfast, transfer to airport for domestic flight to HEHO. Upon arrival transfer (40 km – 1 hour) to AYETHAYA VINEYARD for a visit and local lunch. We continue to Aye Tha Yar where we will start our biking journey. Bike to the pier in NYAUNG SHWE through some of the most beautiful hilly scenery of the Shan States with several ethnic minority villages on the way. Transfer by boat to your hotel (about 1 hour).

Overnight stay in Inle Lake.

Aye Tha Yar – Nyaung Shwe - 30 km
Cycling hours - 2 ½ h
Road condition - Mostly tarred winding road with pot holes in many places, wooden bridges and some narrow paths. Slightly up and down hill. Light traffic.

 

Day 4        Inle Lake

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After breakfast, day excursion by boat on the Inle Lake will include sights of the famous leg rowers, typical floating gardens, local methods of fishing, village life and magnificent scenery. Begin with Local Market (if possible according to market day schedule); the PHAUNGDAW OO PAGODA, one of the most sacred shrines in Myanmar, dating back to the 18th century; SILVER SMITH, BLACK SMITH AND WEAVING WORKSHOPS in YWA-MA and INPAWKHON. And also visit the NGA PHE KYAUNG MONASTERY wonderfully carved wooden floating monastery in the lake.
Overnight stay in Inle Lake.

 

Day 5        Inle Lake / Indein

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After breakfast, the visit begins with the local market in the Inle Lake region (Remark : on market days only) and proceed to the Western Shore of Inle Lake, where you will find the beginning of a stair path leading to the well hidden INDEIN PAGODA complex. Continue on foot to a village nearby where several crops are grown in traditional ways. Walk in an easy pace along one of the many creeks passing through rice fields to the village of SAE MA. Visit the primary school of the village and possibility to meet the children and teachers to observe their way of learning and teaching. Return back to hotel.

Overnight stay in Inle Lake.

 

Day 6        Inle Lake - Aung Ban - Pindaya

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Breakfast at hotel. Transfer by boat to Khaung Daing village (about 30 minutes). Easy walk up hill under the shade of the trees to the wish-fulfilling pagoda overlooking the lake. Get on your bikes and travel through Khaung Daing village and on the road along the shore of the lake to NYAUNG SHWE. Observe the unique life of the Intha people as you stop at farming villages on the way. Lunch break at local restaurant in Nyaung Shwe.

Continue drive (53 km – 1 ½ hour) to AUNG BAN, the junction point where the local public buses to Yangon and Mandalay stop for a break and where hectic activities of people selling vegetables and groceries take place.
Get back on your bikes for a journey through the low hills of Pindaya with numerous colorful farming fields and villages on the way.
Overnight stay in Pindaya.

Walking time about ½ h in total, slightly up and down hill on a small path.
Khaung Daing – Nyaung Shwe - 12 km
Cycling hours - 1 h
Road condition - Partly tarred, partly dusty path along the shore of the lake, flat terrain. Light traffic.
Aung Ban – Pindaya - 42 km
Cycling hours - 3 ½ h
Road condition - Tarred, winding and hilly road with pot holes in many places. Light traffic.

 

Day 7        Pindaya

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After breakfast, start your trekking with various stops at Da-nu and Pa-O villages to see their traditional way of life. Both the Da-nu and Pa-O are mountain farmers and sell their crop at the famous 5-day markets in the Inle Lake area. You will have the chance to visit their villages and plantations. The surroundings are hilly and you will walk up and down, in and out of several valleys. Picnic lunch on the way. Walk back to your hotel.
In the afternoon, visit PINDAYA CAVES, a unique site housing thousands of Buddha images placed there by pilgrims over the centuries.
Overnight stay in Pindaya.
Walking time about 4 - 5 hours in total, up and down hill, altitude difference about 350 – 400 m.

 

Day 8        Pindaya - Ywa Ngan - Myo Gyi - Mandalay

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After breakfast, drive (78 km - 2 ½ hour) to YWA NGAN where the bikes are waiting. From here you will bike downhill until the Shan Hills reach the fertile plains near MYO GYI. This is a typical Myanmar mountain road through some valleys shaded by forest. Lunch break on the way. Continue the last part of your journey by bus (70 km - 2 hour) until you reach Myanmar’s second largest city MANDALAY.
Overnight stay in Mandalay.
Ywa Ngan - Myo Gyi - 68 km
Cycling Hours - 4 hours
Road condition - Tarred, winding mountain road with some pot holes, mostly down hill.
Medium to light traffic.
Note - Cycling route can be adapted to guests wishing heavier or lighter biking.

 

Day 9        Mandalay

After breakfast, leave from your hotel and bike along the Moat Road south of the former ROYAL PALACE. Cross through the heart of Mandalay city to ZAYCHO MARKET with hundreds of food and clothes stores. Continue to bike until you reach the STRAND ROAD. Observe the busy life along the Ayeyarwaddy River with its various ports and merchant activities. 

After lunch break, bike through the north-western quarters of Mandalay to the northern Moat Road and visit GOLDEN PALACE MONASTERY, a superb example of a traditional wooden building and KUTHODAW PAGODA the world’s largest book, made of marble. After sunset time at MANDALAY HILL, return to hotel by bike.
Overnight stay in Mandalay.
Mandalay - Mandalay - 20 km
Cycling hours - 2 h
Road condition - Good tarred, flat road. Heavy traffic in downtown area, small lanes and
walkways will be selected where heavy traffic is encountered.

 

Day 10        Mandalay - Pyin Oo Lwin (By Train)

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Very early morning, transfer to the railway station. Board the Mandalay – Lashio train departing at 04:45am. This train used to be infamous black-market train in the past transporting goods to and from China. You will travel past pretty hills and scenery. The train will cross the famous 700m long Gokteik Bridge, built in 1900 by the American Pennsylvania Steel Co. The impressive height from the bridge to the bottom of the valley is nearly 300m. After crossing the bridge the train will stop at a small station. You will get the chance to have a better look at the bridge. Take good note though that it is not permitted to Photograph/video bridges in Myanmar.
Upon arrival at Naung Pain station around noon, get off the train and drive back (approx. 1 ½ hour) to PYIN OO LWIN (Maymyo), the former British hill station and a delightful small town of colonial-style buildings, markets, and a botanical garden.
On the way stop to visit the PEIK KHYIN MYAUNG CAVES, caves almost as old as the land itself and proceed to PWE KYAUK FALLS, a favorite picnic spot for local people, before retiring to your hotel.
Overnight stay in Pyin Oo Lwin.

Important Information:
Trains in Myanmar are not up to international standard and reliability leaves to be desired. However, we will make every effort to provide best available seats on the train. In case of schedule irregularities or delays, which are quite normal we will adjust your itinerary accordingly.

 

Day 11        Pyin Oo Lwin - Mandalay

After breakfast, visit the local market by a horse cart (if available) before getting your bikes to Mandalay through the scenic highway. Upon arrival, transfer to your hotel and rest of the day at your leisure.
Pyin Oo Lwin - Mandalay - 67 km
Cycling Hours - 4 hours
Road condition - Tarred, winding mountain road with some pot holes, mostly down hill.
Medium to light traffic.
Note - Cycling route can be adapted to guests wishing heavier or lighter biking.
Overnight stay in Mandalay.

 

Day 12        Mandalay / Mingun / Sagaing / Ava

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After breakfast, transfer to the jetty for an excursion by boat on the AYEYARWADDY RIVER to MINGUN about 11 km (1 hour) upriver from Mandalay. Visit the impressive unfinished MINGUN PAYA; MINGUN BELL, a magnificent sight of the world’s largest uncracked bell weighing 90 tons and HSINBYUME PAYA. Bike beside the western bank of the river to SAGAING visiting several rural villages on the way. These typical Myanmar villages are mostly known for their cottage industry producing pottery and silverware. Lunch break at local restaurant.

Cross the famous Sagaing bridge and pedal onwards to the jetty to Ava. Cross the Myinge river and visit the former Royal Capital of INWA (AVA) by horse cart. Visits NANMYINT WATCH TOWER, the remains of the palace building nicknamed “the leaning tower of Ava“; MAHA AUNGMYE BONZAN MONASTERY, built of brick and stucco; BARGAYAR MONASTERY, famous for its impressive ornate woodcarvings and teak posts. Continue by bike to AMARAPURA to the 200-year-old U BEIN teak bridge, built in 1782 at the time when Amarapura was Royal capital and arrive just in time for the sunset. Return to MANDALAY.
Overnight stay in Mandalay.
Hotel - Mandalay Jetty - 5 km
Mingun - Sagaing - 20 km
Sagaing - Ava - 8 km
Ava - Amarapura - 17 km
Cycling hours - ½ h - 2 h - 1 h - 1 ½ h
Road condition - Mostly tarred countryside road with some pot holes, mostly flat. Light to
medium traffic.
Note - Cycling route can be adapted to guests wishing heavier or lighter biking.

 

Day 13        Mandalay - Bagan (By Boat)

After early breakfast, transfer to the jetty and board the Chinese-built ferry for your journey on the AYEYARWADDY River to BAGAN. The trip takes approx. 8 hours downriver, depending on river conditions and water level. Upon arrival in Bagan, transfer to your hotel. 

Overnight stay in Bagan.

 

Day 14        Bagan (Bike Tour)

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After breakfast, your bicycles will be ready for your two days biking tour through old Bagan and the surrounding region. First you will bike to the nearest small town of Nyaung Oo to visit the local market. Go to old Bagan on the historical roads overshadowed by magnificent trees and commence with the visit of the most important temples and pagodas. See the SHWEZIGON PAGODA, built by King Anawrahta in the early 11th century as a religious shrine; GU BYAUK GYI, a temple with superb murals of Jataka scenes and ANANDA TEMPLE with four standing Buddha images. Lunch at local restaurant.
Bagan is not only the site of thousand years old temples and pagodas, but also of many quaint villages scattered throughout the temple plain. Bike over dusty lanes and tree shaded roads past temples and monasteries to Taung Bi village. Visit the noodle makers, a Myanmar-style movie theatre, the village hairdresser and the local tea shop. Bike to the Irrawaddy River and along the way pay a visit to some of the family businesses including blacksmiths, brick makers, dry snack ‘factories’ and bamboo roof producers. Choose one of the more off the beaten track pagodas to climb on top and view the sunset over the plain of Bagan dotted with more than 2’000 temples.
Overnight stay in Bagan.
Distance from Old Bagan - 25 to 30 km
Cycling hours - 4h
Road condition - Mostly dusty paths and small tracks, some badly tarred roads, mostly flat.

 

Day 15        Bagan / Village Tour (Bike Tour)

After breakfast, bike cross country through small lanes and walkways to Min Nan Thu village. The village is near the unusual sights of the TAYOKEPYAY TEMPLE, PHAYA THONE ZU and NANDAMANYA TEMPLES noted for exquisite murals of 13th century. You will have the opportunity to explore these temples or if you prefer bike through the country side and further off the beaten track to numerous hidden temples and pagodas. Return to Bagan for lunch and see the KYAT KAN CAVE monastery, a famous meditation retreat in Bagan on the way. 

Lunch break at local restaurant. 

Pick up at your hotel by horse cart and venture out to some of the more off-the-beaten track temples and pagodas. We don’t follow the trotted trails but take you over dusty roads and small paths through one thousand years of history. 

Overnight stay in Bagan. 

Distance from Old Bagan - 25 to 28 km

Cycling hours - 3 to 3½h

Distance covered in horse cart - 20 to 25 km 

Optional: Experience the magic of Bagan and a thousand years of history from the enchanting platform of a hot air balloon, for the first time ever. Balloons in Bagan offer visitors exclusive sunrise champagne flights over the ancient pagodas of Bagan from late October to April.

 

Day 16        Bagan - Yangon

After breakfast, transfer to airport for morning domestic flight to YANGON. Upon arrival, transfer to your hotel and rest of the day at your leisure. 

Overnight stay in Yangon.

 

Day 17        Depart Yangon

Breakfast at the hotel.  Transfer to airport for International departure.

Itinerary is subject to changes depending on flights, road conditions and availability of rooms. 

 

You can extend the program with Extended Tours .

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R4/202, Shwe Than Lwin Compound, Pun Hlaing Street, 
Sanchaung Tsp., Yangon, Myanmar.

Tel : (95-1) 500 062, 230 4688, (95-9) 511 2006, 513 3958
Fax: (95-1) 500 062
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