Tour Facts at a Glance: Main Tour
Tour Facts at a Glance: Main Tour
TRIP LENGTH: 10 days / 9 nights. Optional extension 3 nights/4 days
DEPARTURE DATES: January 15 – January 24, 2007 (Main tour)
January 24-January 27, 2007 (Extension)
PRICE: Main Tour: US$ 2450 per person. Single supplement US$ 350. Optional Balloon flight: USD 250$ per person
Optional Extension: US$ 600. Single supplement US$ 220.
INCLUSIONS: Main Tour: Western Tour Leader and Local Guide from start to finish. All accommodations, meals, domestic flights, boat tours, transfers, entry fees, snacks and drinking water while on tour.
Optional Extension: Domestic flights, accommodations, transfers, ½ day boat tour, ½ day bicycle rental, breakfast and either lunch or dinner each day.
ARRANGEMENTS: International Airfare is not included in the price of your trip
RESERVATIONS: Information on reserving this tour may be made by emailing Rachel Baker at Travel Tour Myanmer - Burma
CANCELLATIONS: Cancellations received 91 days prior to the tour start will incur a loss of 500$ per person. Cancellations 90-61 days prior to the tour start date incur a loss of 50% of the tour price. There are no refunds within 61 days of the tour start date. We strongly recommend purchasing travel insurance.
RATING AND TERRAIN: Mostly flat walks with a couple of short ascents (not longer then 1 hour of uphill walking). Even trails. Average hiking distance of 2-3 miles per day. The afternoon heat can make the walking seem more difficult then the morning walking.
ACCOMMODATIONS: Deluxe lakeside chalets and modern city hotels surrounded by beautifully landscaped gardens. All private baths.
GRATUITIES: Gratuities for all hotels, meals and services are included in your tour price. Should you wish to tip your tour leader or local guide, this gratuity is entirely at your discretion. The standard in the industry is approximately 10$ per person, per guide, per day and may be payable in US Dollars.
NIGHTS ONE, TWO & NINE: Sedona Hotel
Sitting majestically on eight acres o beautifully landscaped gardens, the Sedona Hotel Yangon is just a 15-minute drive away from the international airport and city center, and within close proximity to Shwedagon Pagoda and Inya Lake. The spacious rooms are beautifully crafted with both contemporary elegance and traditional grace.
NIGHTS THREE & FOUR: Inle Princess Resort
Tel: 011-95-81-29055 or 29364 or 29365
The Inle Princess Resorts lies within the Blue Mountains Ranges on the eastern bank of Inle Lake, surrounded by rice fields. The architecture was drawn from the tradition and culture of the Shan and Intha people. The rooms are individual chalets, beautifully designed and decorated. There is also a spa offering a variety of massages and beauty treatments.
NIGHTS FIVE AND SIX: Sedona Hotel
Sitting graciously in four acres of beautifully landscaped gardens, the Sedona Mandalay is situated right in the heart of the city and faces the city’s glorious sights – the magnificent Mandalay Hill and the majestic Royal Palace. The rooms are graciously designed with an aesthetic eye for both contemporary elegance and traditional grace.
NIGHTS SEVEN AND EIGHT: Thazin Garden Hotel
The Thazin Garden Hotel, set in a quiet and serene location, contains its own Stupa Pagoda. The spacious rooms are built from teak and have private verandas or terraces overlooking the garden. There is also a Massage and Beauty Spa.
HOTELS FOR THE OPTIONAL NGAPALI BEACH EXTENSION
NIGHTS TEN, ELEVEN
TWELVE: Bayview Beach Resort
Tel: 011- 95 43 42299
Fax: 011-95-1-526292 (Sales office)
The Bayview Beach Resort is tucked away between coconut palms on a wide, unspoiled beach. It overlooks the Bay of Bengal and is only 15 minutes from the airport. There is a fresh water swimming pool and a spa offering massage and beauty treatments. All rooms are deluxe and are built in a bungalow style.
Ngapali Beach Hotel
Tel: 011-95-43-42200 or 43800 or 43811 or 43822
The hotel is located on the prime-stretch of white-sand beachfront 15-minute drive from the airport. It has recently been renovated to reflect the warmth and charm of the past with modern comfort. The hotel is built amidst a tropical garden with local materials and teakwood. The rooms are spacious with private terraces overlooking the Bay of Bengal.
DAY THIRTEEN: Season of Yangon Airport Hotel
Tel: 011-95-1-666-699 or 666-337
The Season of Yangon Hotel (formally the Ramada) is located at the Yangon International Airport. It is a 20-minute drive to the city center. There is a swimming pool and a choice of restaurants.
AIPORT: Bangkok International Airport
POINT AND TIME: Yangon International Airport, at the arrivals hall at 9:00 am on Jan 15, 2007. We suggest flying from Bangkok on Thai Airways, flight TG 303.
POINT AND TIME: The main tour ends in Yangon on Jan 24, 2007. We suggest departing on Thai Airways flight 304 to Bangkok. The extension ends in the afternoon of Jan 27, 2007. In this case, we suggest departing on Thai Airways flight 306 to Bangkok.
FLIGHT SCHEDULE: BKK/YANGOON
TG303 DEP 0815 ARR 0900
TG305 DEP 1800 ARR 1845
1. TG 304 DEP 1005 ARR 1145
2. TG 306 DEP 1945 ARR 2125
The above flights are daily and flight duration is 1 hour 15 minutes.
PRE AND POST TOUR
ACCOMMODATIONS: If you need to arrive early or stay later then the tour start and finish dates, add-on nights can be booked for you at the Sedona Yangon Hotel. The rate would be 100$ per room per night including airport transfers.
IN MYANMAR: Mr. Chetri-Win-Tin
Journeys Nature and Culture Explorations
Visitors must have a valid passport with an EVT <Entry Visa for Tourist> to enter Myanmar. The EVT can be obtained at any Myanmar Embassy/Consulate offices with validity for 28 days and extendable for another 7 days. Application forms in duplicate with three-passport size photos are to be submitted with a fee the current fee. There are two type of tourist visa available.
Inclusive Package Visa - valid three months from the date of Issue and require a tour confirmation letter from authorized travel agencies in Yangon.
FIT Visa- Valid one month from the date of Issue but require no tour confirmation letter. This is the type of visa you should apply for.
Visas cannot be obtained on arrival in Myanmar.
All major credit card services and exchange of travellers’ checks in Myanmar have been suspended. Make sure to bring USD CASH for incidentals and souvenir shopping. This amount will vary from person to person depending on how much shopping you intend to do or if you chose to drink imported beverages.
Extra money required on tour-
We would suggest bringing 400$ in cash for the main tour and an extra 75$ in cash for the extension. This includes enough money to cover shopping for incidentals, beverages with meals, as well as optional tip money for your tour leader and local guide. You should bring more cash if you prefer drinking imported beverages or if you plan on buying valuable souvenirs.
Myanmar currency is Kyat (pronounced chat) and the denominations are 50, 100, 200, 500 & 1000. The official exchange rate is around 6 Kyat to US$ 1 (offered at banks and at the airport). The current market exchange rate is about 1000 Kyat to US$ 1. (The rate changes daily.)
Departure tax for international flights is US$-10 per person, payable in US dollars only. This is not included in the price of your tour.
No vaccinations are required for entry into Myanmar. Please consult the CDC or your GP for recommended inoculations.
Bargaining is an art long-practiced in Asian countries including Myanmar. So feel free to ask for a discount when shopping in places where prices are not marked. Myanmar handmade arts and craft make great souvenirs and prices are very reasonable. Lacquer-ware, woodcarvings, tapestries, silverware, brassware, silk and cotton fabrics and shoulder bags are some of the favourite items. Myanmar rubies, sapphires, jade and pearls are available at Myanmar gems shops, and cost a fraction of what they would at home. Some knowledge of gems would useful.
The same precautions as anywhere else in Asia apply to Myanmar. Drink only bottled water. Be wary of eating food from street stalls. Use insect repellent to avoid mosquito bites. Use sunscreen liberally. A 24-hour medical clinic, with internationally trained medical staff is available in Yangon.
The dominating colour of the national flag is red. The rectangular space at the upper left corner is blue. The white in the flag signifies purity; the red indicates bravery and upright nature of the people; and the blue stands as a symbol of peace and stability in the country.
Myanmar has many excellent restaurants specializing in Myanmar, Chinese, and Indian food. Western cuisine is available at most of the larger hotels. The basic Myanmar food is mainly rice and curry. The Myanmar style of food is served as a large assortment of dishes from which you can pick and choose. Myanmar fresh coffee is quite strong. Breakfasts are full western buffets. Lunch and dinner alternate between Asian and Western food each day.
Light casual wear is suitable for all year round. Cotton or other breathable clothing during the day and a light sweater for the evenings during is recommended (micro fleece is ideal). If possible dress modestly at all times. Walking sandals are more convenient then sneakers, as all footwear must be removed before entering temples and pagodas. Visitors are required to dress conservatively in the precincts of religious buildings. Ladies should not wear shorts or bra-less T-shirts in such places. Shoes, socks and stockings must be removed at Pagodas and Monasteries. In general trousers (or ¾ length trousers) are preferable to shorts even when not in the temples, especially for women.
Overseas calls can be made through International direct dial phones available at Telephone offices and hotels. Internet interactive service is currently not available in Myanmar however e-mail is available at most hotels. This means that you can use the hotel email addresses to send or receive emails but you will not have access to your own email accounts. At present the local GSM network does not support global network therefore using your global mobile phone is not possible in Myanmar.
Regulations are generally relaxed for tourists arriving by air in Yangon. Visitors should complete Immigration and customs declaration forms during the flight and submit these on arrival. Bringing in or taking out of Myanmar currency is not allowed. You are permitted to take out Gems and jewellery purchased from authorized dealers only. You are not allowed to take antiques out of the country.
Best buys include lacquer ware, silver, wood and stone carvings, hand-woven silk and cotton garment or fabrics, gems, 'Kalaga' embroidered tapestries, traditional puppets and tribal handicrafts. Jewellery is generally up to international standards for design and workmanship.
Taxi & bus –
Private taxis are easily available in Yangon but there is no meter. The fare must be negotiated before beginning the trip.
The Myanmar Standard Time is six and half-hours in advance of GMT.
Domestic power AC 220 - 250V 50Hz. The socket sizes for plugs are square as in the United States or round as in France (both are widely used in hotels).
Same day laundry service and express ½ day laundry service (charged at a premium) is available at all hotels. You will have an opportunity to do laundry at each place we visit. Or you may choose to rinse out your items on your own.
Baggage allowance for flights:
Both the domestic airlines and Thai International Airlines only allow total of 44 pounds per person (not per bag) with a limit of 2 check-in bags per person. Extra weight on domestic flights is charged at 1$ per kg overweight.
Note for women:
Tampons are not available in Myanmar. You should bring these from home if they are required.
Society and Conduct:
The Burmese people in general have a very easygoing nature. They like to smile and are friendly. The social conduct of the people, no matter what tribe they come from is termed “Burmese-ness”. This includes an acquaintance with the Buddhist scriptures, showing respect for elders, dressing modestly, showing discretion in the behaviour towards the opposite sex and most importantly exhibiting modes of expression and comportment that value the quiet, subtle and indirect rather then the loud, obvious and direct.
BASIC BURMESE PHRASES AND WORDS:
Twamey Let’s go.
Jesubey Thank you
Ta-Ta Good Bye
Tan-Ye Bottled water
Yeh Tan Peh Ba Please bring me drinking water
Ma Weh Tey Boo No thank you (to street sellers)
Ma Weh Boo No thank you more forcefully (to street hawkers)
Than-baya Lime juice
Than-baya peh ba Please bring me a lime juice
Cown Tey Good (as in the food tastes good)
Pey lau ley How much does it cost?
Ne-kaun yeh la? How are you?
Ne-kaun-ba-deh I am well.
WHAT TO PACK
FOOT WARE and CARE:
· Walking sandals: As you will need to take on and off your shows quite a lot we suggest shoes that are easy to get on and off but also comfortable for walking. Merrill or Teva make such sandals. You could also wear these types of shoes in the evenings.
· 1 or 2 pairs or socks to wear on cool evenings
· Blister remedy Kit
· A nailbrush: Your feet will get dirty during the day when walking barefoot in and around the temples. You may want a small brush or pumice stone to clean your feet in the evenings.
· Foot Cream: Your feet can also get quite dry when walking on bare stones. A rich foot cream will help prevent cracked heals.
CLOTHING: light weight in breathable material. Dinner attire is casual (same sort of attire as during the day with a light sweater added. We suggest bringing:
· 2-3 pairs of ¾ length trousers or thin material long trousers. Shorts are not appropriate, except at the beach
· 2 or 3 short sleeved shirts
· 2 or 3 short sleeved shirts
· Optional: a skirt or wrap around sarong for evenings (both men and women wear sarongs in Myanmar)
· Lightweight sweater or micro fleece for evenings
· Optional: a skirt or wrap around sarong for evenings or at the beach (both men and women wear sarongs in Myanmar)
· Bathing suit (most of the hotels have swimming pools)
· 2 or 3 pairs of underwear (these can be rinsed out in the hotels)
· A “bum bag” or day pack to carry water, small money and your camera
· Sun screen and lip balm
· A wide brimmed hat or baseball cap (to keep the sun off your face)
· Hand sanitizer (gel or handy wipes)
PESRONAL FIRST AID KIT
· Aspirin (or acetaminophen or Ibuprofen)
· Cold Remedy
· Motion sickness remedy if you are susceptible to car or boat sickness
· A mild laxative (or dried fruit)
· Pepto-Bismol (or similar)
· Anti-diarrhoea medicine
· Insect repellent
Consult your physician for the below. You should also an ample supply of any other prescription medications that you ordinarily take. Any prescription medications you require should be brought in their original containers.
· Antibiotic for gastro-intestinal infections
· Umbrella: a small umbrella is useful for keeping the sun off when walking in the hotter places such as Bagan or Yangon.
· A small flashlight: better to see frescos is some of the darker temples
· Telescopic walking stick (although the walks are not difficult, you may prefer to use a walking stick)
· Camera and extra film (film may be expensive and slide film is difficult to find)
· Spare memory chips and batteries for digital cameras
· Ziploc bags (to keep camera and valuables safe from accidental spills)
· Small notebook and pen
· Field guides (see enclosed reading list)
· Travel alarm clock and watch
· Personal toiletries
· Second pair of prescription glasses (if worn)
· Ear plugs
PACKING TIPS AND LUGGAGE REQUIREMENTS
Pack light! Our trips are meant to be fun. The more you pack the more you have to worry about. Keep in mind that there might be times, especially before and after your Burma trip that you might have to carry your own luggage for short distances. We recommend soft-sided luggage. Your cooperation is greatly appreciated. We also recommend that you pack your valuables, prescription medicines and your walking shoes in your hand carried luggage. Better yet, wear your walking shoes on the plane. Please note that individual airlines may have their own luggage restrictions. (Thai International Airways has a luggage restriction of 30 kg. (44 lbs.) per person in total for check through bags. Your hand carried luggage is restricted to 8kg (18 lbs) per person. There would be a 5$ per kg surcharge if your bags exceed this limit.
The walks are generally easy. Anyone who is active and in good health should have no trouble completing the walks. Please be aware that the sun in Myanmar is strong so it is necessary to drinks lots of water throughout the day to keep rehydrated.
You should be used to doing a couple of hours of brisk walking each day although it does not have to be strenuous walking as most of our walks are not steep.
SAFETY AND EMERGENCIES:
Travel to Myanmar is relatively safe. However, as in any country avoid carrying your money or valuables in your back pockets. In addition, you should carry photocopies of important documents in a separate area of your luggage. Always be alert when carrying packages, cameras or backpacks though city streets. You may be asked to give your airplane ticket to the local operator in Yangon. This is for security and to confirm your return flight. We recommend leaving valuable jewellery at home and using locks on your luggage. To join this trip you must be in good health and in good physical condition. You should bring an ample supply of any medicine you regularly use. We will exercise reasonable care in assuring a safe and enjoyable trip but you should be aware that adventure travel has some risks. Please be sure to inform us of any physical limitations or conditions, medications being taken, allergies or health problems.
RECOMMENDED READING LIST
· Burmese Days by George Orwell (1934)
· The Lonely Planet Myanmar (Burma): Published by Lonely Planet Publications Pty, Ltd
· Culture Shock, Myanmar: A guide to Customs and Etiquette by Saw Myat Tin. Published by Time Books International
· Birds of Myanmar by Kyaw Nyunt Lwin and Khin Ma Ma Thwin. Published by Swiftwinds, Yangon
· Shades of Gold and Green, anecdotes of Colonial Burmah, 1886-1948 by Nicholas Greenwood. Available from Asian Educational Services. Email: email@example.com.
Information on reserving this tour may be made by emailing Rachel Baker at Click on Travel Tour Myanmer - Burma
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