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Unknown Asia - Volcanoes of Myanmar

- 12 days exploring the volcanoes of Myanmar with a geologist -

Itinerary 12 days

As it is a pilot tour, only a rough itinerary is given that can undergo modifications on location if necessary due to various conditions.

Day 1: Arrival in Mandalay

Pick-up from Mandalay airport and transfer to a hotel in the city center. Rest of day is free, the group meets at a welcome dinner where you will get a briefing from your tour guide.
Acc.: hotel in Mandalay (D)

Day 2: Transfer to Mogok

We will leave Mandalay in the morning to drive in a private minibus to Mogok where we arrive in the late afternoon. The transfer takes approx. 7 hours and takes us through beautiful mountain roads and forests. The town of Mogok is known for its ruby mines.
Acc.: hotel in Mogok (B, L, D)

Day 3: Mogok and its ruby mines

The geology of Mogok is linked to the creation of the Himalaya Mountains and has always been a crossroad of Burmese, Chinese, Indian, Nepalese, and Bengali people. All are attracted by the land which is rich in gemstones. Your guide will take you to explore the gems market and some ruby mines.
Acc.: as before (Mogok) (B, L, D)

Day 4: Drive to Shwebo

You will leave Mogok and go west in the direction of Shwebo and Letha Taung where you will discover the area near Singu with a huge deposit of young, approx. 100 m thick fluid lava flows.
Acc.: hotel in Shwebo (B, L, D)

Day 5: Trachy-basaltic lavas of Singu Plateau (Letha Taung)

Day for excursions to interesting geologic outcrops in the area.
Acc.: as before (Shwebo) (B, L, D)

Day 6: Monywa and Po Win Taung caves

You will leave Shwebo area and will go south to reach Monywa (3 to 4 hours drive). During the next 2 days, we will study the volcanic range of Monywa, made of around 10 monogenic volcanoes with various lavas (basalt, rhyolites).
In the afternoon, you can visit Po Win Taung caves which are thought to have been inhabited at the beginning of human era in Myanmar. Many caves are now filled with Buddha images and paintings.
Acc.: hotel in Monywa (B, L, D)

Day 7: Monywa & Thanbuddhay pagoda

A full day to continue exploring the area and its interesting geology.
Visit of the city, famous for its giant standing and reclining Buddha images, the Thanbuddhay pagoda, built in 1303 and restored many times, where many old paintings and relics can be observed.
Acc.: as before (Monywa) (B, L, D)

Day 8: Transfer and boat tour to Pakokku, Bagan and Mount Popa

From Monywa, it takes around 3 h of driving to reach the town of Pakokku. We visit the town and its market before taking a private boat on the Irrawaddy River, the main river of Myanmar. The trip down the river to Bagan takes about 2 hours. On arrival, you will continue to Mount Popa (1 hour drive).
Acc.: hotel near Mount Popa (B, L, D)

Day 9: Mount Popa stratovolcano - Taung Kalatt temple

We have a full day to climb and explore this magnificent volcano. Its latest eruptions are thought to be around 442 BC.
We will see pyroclastic flows, lava flows and domes and a horse-shoe shaped caldera formed by a large landslide with associated debris flow deposits. We can climb the 777 steps leading to the Taung Kalatt temple, at the top of a volcanic neck associated to Mont Popa stravolcano. The view from the top is amazing.
Acc.: as before (B, L, D)

Day 10: Mount Popa - Bagan

Morning visits around Mount Popa and transfer to Bagan in the afternoon. Free time in Bagan.
Acc.: hotel in Bagan (B, L, D)

Day 11: Bagan - Asia's richest temple complex

We have a full day to discover the richest archaeological site of Asia with more than 3,000 stupas and temples. We will visit some famous pagodas such as Ananda: the Finest one, Thatbyinyu: the highest temple of Bagan. Shwesigon: the most venerable pagoda, Dhammayangyi, the most massive temple, Shwesandaw Pagoda, Gubyaukgyi and Gubyauknge. Inside the temples, we will see the old Myanmar People’s mural paintings and the fresco of 11th and 13th centuries. We will watch the sunset from the top of a temple.
Acc.: as before (B, L, D)

Day 12: Flight to Yangon and international departure

Morning flight to Yangon and international departure. If time permitting, we can visit the former capital of Myanmar with its colonial buildings, the Bogyoke market, Shwedagon pagoda.
Acc.: none (B)
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