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Rivers, Roads and Rail to Rangoon QBU

Trip Duration 11 Days

Myanmar on a budget

This exciting journey takes us from relaxed northern Thailand, to the beautiful and serene Inle Lake, across the central plains of Burma to the temples of Bagan, before ending in the old capital of Rangoon. We make use of Burma's public transport network, with the chance to engage with locals on a bus ride to Bagan, and an opportunity to travel between Mandalay and Rangoon on a colonial railway line originally built by the British. Also included is a leisurely two-day river cruise along Burma's biggest waterway, the Irrawaddy. It's an adventurous trip that, in just 11 days, allows us to take in Burma's major highlights and offers us the chance to interact with its warm and welcoming inhabitants.

Should I go?
Signalling the end of a fifteen-year tourism boycott, Aung San Suu Kyi, the Burmese pro-democracy leader, gave her blessing for the return of tourism to Burma in November 2010. National League for Democracy (NLD) leader U Win Tin said, "We want people to come to Burma, not to help the junta, but to help the people by understanding the situation: political, economic, moral - everything." The return of small groups and individuals to Burma has been endorsed by Burma Campaign UK and the Free Burma campaign. We are delighted to have returned to the country, having respected the boycott, we remain acutely aware of our ethical responsibility. We use a privately-owned Burmese agent for all of our local services, and our itineraries have been carefully planned to limit the use of services owned by, or affiliated with, the former military junta. This ensures that the Burmese people benefit as much as possible from our tours. We strongly believe that we contribute positively to the local economy, whilst providing our customers with the privilege of direct interaction with the local people, as well as an insight into the country's unique culture and heritage. On the 8th November 2015, 50 years of military rule came to an end when the NLD won a land-slide victory in Burma's first national vote. The country is embracing an unprecedented period of change, but with the military junta still retaining 25% of its seats. Visiting Burma now offers a fascinating insight into the politics of a country grappling with, and slowly embracing democracy and the 21st Century

Tour Highlights

  • Chiang Mai - Time to explore the 'Rose of the North' and the majestic Doi Suthep temple.
  • Inle Lake - Discover the unique 'one-legged' rowing style of the local fisherman on the serene waters of Inle Lake.
  • Bagan - Marvel at the thousand-year old temples that stretch across the vast plains of Bagan, as far as the eye can see.
  • Irrawaddy River - Enjoy a scenic and peaceful cruise along the Irrawaddy River en-route to Mandalay.
  • Rangoon - Stare in awe at the Shwedagon Pagoda, with the beautiful golden stupa being one of the most revered in all of Asia.


Itineraries on some departure dates may differ, please select.

Show more
  • 1
    Join trip in Chiang Mai

  • 2
    Morning free for optionals in Chiang Mai; afternoon drive to Chiang Rai

  • 3
    Cross the border into Burma, fly to Heho, drive to Inle Lake

  • 4
    Morning cruise by longtail boat on Inle Lake, free afternoon to explore

  • 5
    Drive through rural Burmese villages to Bagan

  • 6
    Discover the 1000 year old temples of Bagan

  • 7
    Overnight cruise up the Irrawaddy River to Mandalay

  • 8
    Morning visit to Mingun village, afternoon arrival in Mandalay

  • 9
    Free day to explore Mandalay; overnight train to Rangoon

  • 10
    Discover the sights of Rangoon; free afternoon

  • 11
    Trip ends in Rangoon

Trip notes

Each departure date has its own dedicated trip note, detailing all you need to know about that trip. Whether you've already booked, or weighing up your options, please choose carefully the relevant itinerary for you.

We have the following different versions of the Rivers, Roads and Rail to Rangoon trip available at present.

Please select a date:

Customer rating:
Rivers, Roads and Rail to Rangoon
Why Book this trip
This is a fast paced tour with plenty of free time so you can make the most of your trip, allowing you to make the choice to either explore as much as you want, or perhaps to relax and soak up the atmosphere if you prefer. There will be some long but rewarding journeys, allowing us to see much of Burma and its main highlights in under two weeks. In order to offer the most competitive prices, this tour uses our 'simple' range of accommodation - clean and comfortable 'no frills' hotels and guesthouses that offer an authentic and often, locally-run experience.
Included meals 10 0 0
Breakfast Lunch Dinner
Train, Boat, Public Bus
1 night Premium Hotel
7 nights Standard Hotel
1 night Simple Boat
1 night Simple Overnight Train
Trip Staff
Driver(s), Explore Tour Leader, Local Guide(s), Boat Crew
Group Size
Generally 10 - 16