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©Wolfgang Kaehler

2017 Myanmar (Burma) and Laos

January 8 – 19, 2017

 

I have traveled several times to Myanmar (Burma) and Laos.  My first trip was in 1981.  I was very impressed what this country has to offer:  friendly people, amazing culture and landscapes.  This trip is an experience for any traveler, even if you are not a photographer.  Gilded Buddha statues and stupas, ancient temples in Bagan, peaceful lakes will await you.

This trip is for people who like to explore cultures, people, and landscapes and like photography.  Even if you are not a photographer, but like to travel, you will enjoy running with the Wolfies to Myanmar.  It is competitively priced without sacrificing any comfort because I am a small company without a large overhead.  If you are interested, please sign up as soon as possible because it will fill up fast.  Please have a look at the itinerary and feel free to contact me with any questions.

TOUR CLOSED. Please email us at photos@wkaehlerphoto.com for information about future editions of this tour.

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Trip Details

Run with the Wolfies: Myanmar (Burma) January 8 – 19, 2017

with an optional Laos extension – small group adventure

 

BURMA, PAGAN, WATERBEARERS AND OX CART SILHOUTTED IN THE IRRAWADDY RIVER AT SUNSET

BURMA, PAGAN, WATERBEARERS AND OX CART SILHOUTTED IN THE IRRAWADDY RIVER AT SUNSET

Day 1-2  8th Jan 2017 Tuesday         Travel Days

Depart Home with overnight in Bangkok (not included)

 

Day 3 10th Jan 2017 Tuesday          Arrival Rangoon

On arrival Rangoon, met and transfer to your hotel. Depending on your arrival time, take a walk in Old Rangoon to understand the ethnic diversity of Rangoon.

Overnight at The Strand Hotel (deluxe suite).

MYANMAR(BURMA), RANGOON, SHWEDAGON PAGODA, BUDDHIST NUNS30001795MYANMAR(BURMA), RANGOON, SHWEDAGON PAGODA, GOLDEN STUPAS

Day 4 11th Jan 2017 Wednesday    Rangoon / Inle Lake

Breakfast at hotel followed by a morning visit to the Shwedagon Pagoda and to the Chaukhtetgyi Pagoda with the Reclining Buddha.  In the afternoon we transfere to the airport for our flight to Heho.  On arrival in Heho we transfer to your hotel on the eastern bank of the lake. 

Overnight at Villa Inle Resort (Lake Front Villa) BLD

 

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Day 5 12th Jan 2017 Thursday        Inle Lake

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In the early morning mist we will see the fishermen at work. Return to hotel for Breakfast. Then set out by boat to visit Phaungdawoo Pagoda and Market Day, Silk weaving at Innpawkhone Village, sugar cane farmers at Naungtaw Village. Lunch will be at a local restaurant. Afternoon participate in the leg rowers boat race. Return to hotel.

Overnight at Villa Inle Resort (Lake Front Villa) BLD 

Note:  Today could be new moon OR full moon day in Myanmar and market day does not happen on the new moon and full moon day.   The Myanmar lunar calendar is not published yet for 2017.

  30072108MYANMAR(BURMA), PAGAN, SHWESANDAW PAYA PAGODA, MONKS HAVING LUNCH, COURTYARD OF PAGODAMYANMAR(BURMA), PAGAN, MARKET SCENE, CHILE PEPPERS, TOMATOS, CAULIFLOWER, OKRA AND CACTUS

Day 6 13th Jan 2017 Friday                         Inle Lake

Breakfast at hotel followed by an early morning boat ride to the southern part of the lake. Visit Taungtoe Village meet the PaO tribe, and see a hundreds of old stupas on the hill side. Continue by boat to visit Kwunwoo Village, meet the abbot, have tea with villagers, see the school children performance in their traditional costume and do donation to their primary school. Lunch at a local restaurant. Visit floating garden and villages. Return to hotel. 

Overnight at Villa Inle Resort (Lake Front Villa) BLD

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Day 7 14th Jan 2017 Saturday        Inle Lake / Bagan

Breakfast at hotel.  Drive to the Green Hill Valley Camp for retired Elephant and reforestation project.  This is a project that was set up to look after aged elephants that the logging companies did not want to keep and were not able let them go back into the wild. There are six retired and one orphan elephant.  If you like, you can feed and bath them and give them love and care which they need. After lunch at the camp, transfer to Heho airport and flight to Bagan.  If time allows climb up to a temple terrace for the sunset view. Overnight at Thiripyitsaya Sanctuary Resort (deluxe garden view room). BLD

 

MYANMAR(BURMA), PAGAN, MARKET SCENE, BURMESE WOMAN SELLING FOODMYANMAR(BURMA), PAGAN, BURMESE TEENAGER WEARING TRADITIONAL COSMETIC PASTE TO BLEACH SKINMYANMAR(BURMA), PAGAN, VIEW OF PAGODA, BURMESE BOY ON OX CART

Day 8  15th Jan 2017 Sunday          Bagan

Optional Balloon Ride over Bagan (300$ per person). Return to hotel for Breakfast. Morning visit to Myingaba Village and Gubyaukgyi Temple, Ananda Temple. Lunch at a local restaurant. Afternoon visit to the Htilominlo Temple and Shwezigon Pagoda. Sunset walk around the temples.

Overnight at Thiripyitsaya Sanctuary Resort (deluxe garden view room) BLD

Photo shoot :  Young girls in traditional dress from 4:30PM to 6:30PM. 

 

Day 9 16th Jan 2017 Monday          Bagan

Early morning tea and coffee at hotel. Transfer to Minanthu Village for a sunrise walk among the temples and sesame fields. Back to hotel for breakfast. Then visit a toddy palm farm to see the toddy tree climber and see traditional way of pressing peanuts oil. Lunch at a local restaurant. Visit a lacquer ware workshop. Afternoon take a short rest. At 4:00PM, set out by horse cart to Khinminga Temple, sunset view from a temple terrace.

Overnight at Thiripyitsaya Sanctuary Resort (deluxe garden view) BLD 

MYANMAR(BURMA), PAGAN, ANANDA TEMPLE, EARLY 12TH CENTURY, GIANT BUDDHA STATUEOverview of the plain in Bagan (Pagan), Myanmar (Burma) with pagodas and temples at sunset

 

 Day 10            17th Jan 2017 Tuesday          Bagan / Mandalay

Breakfast at hotel.  Morning drive to Mandalay. It will take about 5 hours. We will be stopping time by time to take photos when we see interesting thing such as villagers at work in their fields, ox carts loading with local produces.. Arrive in Sagaing in time for lunch.  Visit a Buddhist nunnery and meet the young nuns, do some donation to this very dignified head nun. Then visit a community school where 3,000 children including orphans gaining basic education. Climb up by truck to the top of The Sagaing Hill, sunset view from Umin Koese Pagoda.  Drive to Mandalay and check in at hotel for overnight. 

Overnight at Rupar Mandalar Resort (deluxe room). BLD

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 Day 11            18th Jan 2017  Wednesday   Mandalay

Early morning tea and coffee at hotel.  Drive to U Bein bridge for sunrise. Then visit Mahamuni Buddha Image and the marble carving street. Back to hotel for a proper breakfast. After breakfast visit the Shwenandaw Kyaung Monastery and Kuthodaw Pagoda (to avoid the tourist crowd who used to come in the afternoon to these two places). Return to hotel for a light lunch and a little rest. Afternoon at 3:30 set out to visit a local market, gold leaf making workshop, and sunset walk on the Irrawaddy River Bank.  

Overnight at Rupar Mandalar Resort (deluxe room). BLD

 

Photo shoot:  Traditional dance performance and girls in dancer dress from 6:00PM to 7:30PM at hotel.

  

MYANMAR(BURMA), RANGOON, SHWEDAGON PAGODA, MONKS WORSHIPING, POURING WATER OVER BUDDHA STATUEMYANMAR(BURMA), PAGAN, TRADITIONAL BURMESE PUPPET SHOW, PUPPETMYANMAR(BURMA), PAGAN, VILLAGE SCENE, LACQUERWARE FACTORY, BUDDHA STATUE

Day 12            19th Jan 2017 Tuesday  Mandalay

 Early morning tea and coffee at hotel followed by the drive to Mahakuthodaw Monastery, to see the monks at their prayer, do donation when they line up and go out for collecting alms. Continue to the jetty on the river to see the local boats unloading sand and pots manually. Return to hotel for breakfast and check out.  Visit Jade Market in route to the airport for your departure flight to homeward if time allows and you are interested.  BL

 

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 The best flight to take is Bangkok Airways which departs at around 2:00PM from Mandalay to Bangkok.  Depending on your flight home or if you are going on the optional Laos extension, you might have to stay a night in Bangkok.  I can arrange a night at the airport hotel (which has been terrific in the past) for everyone and will try to get a group rate.

 

 

Optional Laos extension January 20 – Jan. 24, 2017

Overnight in BKK (not included)

Jan. 20, 2017 – Day 1: Arrive Luang Prabang.

The endless pool in the garden of the La Residence Phou Vao Hotel in Luang Prabang, central Laos.

The endless pool in the garden of the La Residence Phou Vao Hotel in Luang Prabang, central Laos.

Transfer to the airport for your flight to Luang Prabang. “Sawadeeeee” – your guide will greet you upon arrival in Luang Prabang. Nestled on the banks of the Mekong River and surrounded by mountains, Luang Prabang is one of Asia’s most beautiful and enchanting cities. Take in the special feel of this unique town during your stay. The sightseeing of today depends on your arrival time. For sure you will have enough time to walk up the 329 steps of Mt. Phousy and enjoy the view of the World Cultural Heritage City and the Mekong.

Overnight in Luang Prabang. LD

LAOS, LUANG PRABANG, VIEW OF PHOUSI HILL WITH PHOUSI STUPA FROM TEMPLE, VAT MAI

LAOS, LUANG PRABANG, VIEW OF PHOUSI HILL WITH PHOUSI STUPA FROM TEMPLE, VAT MAI

 

Jan. 21, 2017 – Day 2: Luang Prabang – TEMPLE VISITS

After breakfast visit the exquisite Royal Palace Museum. Built in 1904, during the French colonial era for King Sisavang Vong and his family, architecturally it combines a blend of traditional Lao motifs and the French Beaux-Art styles. This museum houses a wonderful collection of objects of art, costumes from the Royal Theater, jewellery and other interesting treasures belonging to former kings. In the afternoon continue by road to the villages of Ban Xang Khong and Xiëng Lek. These villages are well known for their jute paper production, silk weaving and natural dying. Learn the step-by-step processing techniques used to manufacture these products which have been used since ancient times. If time permits visit Wat Mai, the former temple of Lao Buddhist Patriarch and Wat Sene, and watch sunset over the hill at Wat Phrabat Tai on the bank of the Mekong River.

Overnight in Luang Prabang. BLD

Jan. 22, 2017 – Day 3: Luang Prabang – PAK OU CAVE

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LAOS, NEAR LUANG PRABANG, MEKONG RIVER, PAK OU CAVES, BUDDHA STATUES, RIVER IN BACKGROUND

LAOS, NEAR LUANG PRABANG, MEKONG RIVER, PAK OU CAVES, BUDDHA STATUES, RIVER IN BACKGROUND

Today enjoy a boat ride (a few hours) upstream on the Mekong River. Watch slender canoes bobbing by the shore, floating poles marking the location of nets and fish traps, children playing on the sand beach, women washing laundry or taking showers. Visit Pak Ou cave, situated in the side of a lime stone cliff and opposite of the mount of Mekong and Ou rivers. Two large caves are home for one thousand Buddha which are allegedly more than 300 years old. It is believed by the locals that many good-natured spirits reside in these caves. Climb some more steps up to visit a small royal cave Wat nearby you will see Lao typical villages a screen of foliage, slender canoes bobbing by the shore, bamboo poles and floats that mark the location of nets and fish traps. Stop at Ban Muangkeo, well-known for the famous Lao welcome cocktail ‘lao khao’. Watch a rice alcohol-processing plant and learn the step-by-step traditional process.

Overnight in Luang Prabang.  BLD

Jan. 23, 2017 – Day 4 Luang Prabang KUANGSI WATERFALL

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After breakfast drive to Kuangsi Waterfall (30 km) south of Laung Prabang which is not very high but its spectacular and green surrounding makes it a preserve National Park. En- route visit Ban Na Oune, a small village of the hill tribe called “Hmong”. They are the best known minority group in Laos. Relax at the shady park and take a picnic lunch nearby Kuangsi water fall. Return to Luang Prabang, visit Wat Visoun; this 16th century temple serves as a small museum for religious artifacts. Wat Xiengthong, the 16th century temple which more than any temple in Luang Prabang, epitomizes all the elegance and grace of Luang Prabang’s architecture.

 

Overnight in Luang Prabang. BLD

 

Jan. 24, 2017 – Day 5 Luang Prabang – Departure

Transfer to the airport for the flight home. Depending on your flight home, you might have to stay a night in Bangkok.  I can arrange a night at the airport for everyone and will try to get a group rate.

Flights home the same day if connections are available or overnight in BKK with flights home the next day.