There is an amazing country in the world that words cannot describe. A country where early in the morning, before the first rays of the sun touch the majestic Irrawaddy River, monks walk the streets of towns and villages with bowls for food, collecting food for the day, just as they did in Buddha's time. And the villagers gratefully come out onto the streets to feed the monks and receive blessings. Just above the horizon, the sun rushes to light hundreds and thousands of golden pagodas, which will burn all day until sunset, like thousands of little suns. And then, following the main light, they will plunge into the waters of the great river, along the banks of which many fishermen cast heavy nets every day, just as their ancestors did many years ago, to catch fish to feed the family waiting for them at home. The girls here are austere and extremely beautiful, free and reserved, with flowers painted with tanaka cream blooming on their cheeks every morning, both as jewellery and as protection from the sun. The men are reserved and strong, as befits the descendants of one of the most freedom-loving peoples, and the long skirts only emphasise their austerity and identity. Even the reddish dust of the streets, which touches the edges of the men's skirts and the soles of the girls' sandals, is something special here - soaked in the sun and full of the aromas of herbs, trees, spices and human destiny. It is a country that can be talked about endlessly, but it is better to see and feel it at least once. A country that Kipling wrote poems about..... One of our favourite countries, to which we will be returning for the 11th time. And we will be happy to share our love for this beautiful, amazing country. Of course we can only talk about Myanmar....
Main experiences and impressions
- The tradition of feeding the monks.
- Dawn and sunset photography in the most beautiful places in the country.
- The fishermen's life. Traditional and very photogenic ways of fishing.
- Buddhist monasteries. Life from the inside.
- Buddhist and traditional schools.
- Towns and villages, rural life.
- Monuments of art and architecture. Gigantism in the creations of the era of King Mindat.
- Life on the river. Settlements.
- Traditions of stone artisans.
- Ancient pagodas at Bagan.
- The unique Buddhist complex at Indein.
- Life on Inle Lake. Floating vegetable gardens. Lotus farms. Unique tradition of one-foot rowing.
- Monastery of jumping cats.
- Peanut fields, villages, buffalo. (It is highly likely that we will be able to film buffalo bathing).
- Many markets and bazaars.
- Local dress and jewellery.
- Boat rides on the lake.
- The colour of Yangon's Chinese quarter. Chinese temple. The markets. Shooting on the quay.
- Shwedagon - the main Buddhist pagoda in SEA. A city within a city.
- Traditions and beliefs of the people of Chin State. Women with facial tattoos.
- Traditions of the long-necked people. Women with rings around their necks.
- National cuisine of different peoples of Myanmar.
Myanmar is perhaps the only country in the world where almost everyone has been a monk and lived in a monastery. There is probably no other country where the influence of Buddhism on people's lives has been so great (perhaps with the exception of Tibet and Bhutan, but that's another story). Every morning, lines of monks march through the streets of cities, towns and villages to collect food. Monasteries are as common as schools. And if you look from above, you can always see the golden tops of Buddhist pagodas, picturesquely scattered among the hills. So it is not surprising that visiting monasteries and Buddhist temples, taking photographs and interacting with monks will be one of the main themes of this trip. It is no coincidence that the image of the Buddhist monk is one of the key images of Myanmar.
Our journey begins in Mandalay, the ancient capital of Myanmar. Mandalay is multifaceted, as deep as the waters of the Irrawaddy River on whose banks it sits. Each of us will discover our own Manadalai and we will have the opportunity to create our own images of this ancient city and tell them in photographs or perhaps poems.
Sagain, the city of nunneries, is another amazing place near Mandalay. There are many Buddhist nunneries of different sizes on the picturesque hills on the banks of the river. A visit to Sagain is like a trip to another world.
There are female Buddhist monasteries in many eastern countries, but nowhere are there as many as in Myanmar. This is because in Myanmar, unlike in other Asian countries, women have the same rights as men. And the opportunity to live in a monastery is an opportunity for a woman to choose for herself the path of spiritual development and spiritual life, and not just to devote herself to family and children, as is the practice in many other countries. It is no coincidence that in Myanmar the position equivalent to Prime Minister is held by a woman. We will not only go to Sagaing, but also visit the most interesting monasteries, get to know the daily routine and way of life, see how food is prepared and communicate with the nuns.
Another iconic place in Myanmar is Bagan, the former capital of the Bagan (or as it is sometimes translated, Pagan) Kingdom. A small village, its surroundings are dotted with ancient pagodas of all shapes and sizes. Inside the pagodas are images of Buddha. If you look at the pagodas from above, it is a truly amazing sight.
Although Burma is largely a Buddhist country, there are regions where pagan tribes still live with their traditions and cultural peculiarities. And without getting to know them, your knowledge of the country would not be complete. One of the most interesting, in my opinion, is the Chin people. Their villages are lost in the dense forests on the slopes of mountains, the highest point of which is Victoria Peak - 3090 metres, for a country like Myanmar is not small. The men are known as brave hunters, and the women are famous for having their faces tattooed as children. There is no precise answer as to why. There are several legends told to curious tourists by tour guides. We will definitely get to know these people, their beliefs, traditions and legends during our trip.
Another legendary place in Myanmar is of course Inle Lake, famous for its fishermen, floating villages, floating vegetable gardens and the amazing way the locals row and steer their boats with their feet instead of their hands. All of this, plus the amazing Indein complex - a real place of power in these parts - and a large forest monastery await us on our visit to the lake.
And, of course, no visit to Myanmar would be complete without seeing Shwedagon - the largest Buddhist pagoda in the SEA. The place is not only amazing, but a place with an amazing atmosphere that cannot be expressed in words. A place that has to be seen. To see it we will fly to Yangon, the capital of the country. This is also the end of our Myanmar tour.
The price is $2,160 per person based on double occupancy. Single supplement is $400.
The hotels we stay at during our Myanmar tours.
The price includes
- 2 local flights.
- Transfer to Bagan in comfortable vehicles.
- Transfer to Mindat and travel in Chin State by private vehicles.
- Comfortable accommodation in 3-4 star hotels throughout the programme.
- All in-country transfers and transfers, airport pick ups and drop offs.
- Boats, taxis, all transfers throughout the programme.
- Entrance fees to protected areas, geological fees, etc.
- Guides and escorts en-route. Local guide in Chin State.
- Assistance and escort on route.
- Photo programme.
Price does not include
- Flights to and from Myanmar. If necessary, we can help you purchase tickets from your city.
- Visa. If necessary, we can arrange registration.
- Medical insurance.
- Lunch and dinner. Depending on your appetite and preferences. On average between $5 and $15 per person.
- Personal spending for souvenirs.
Reservations are 30% prepaid. A further 40% of the cost of the tour must be paid at least one month before departure. The balance is payable on the first day of the tour. If the participant cancels the trip for any reason, the deposit is non-refundable. Minor changes to the itinerary are permitted.
Portrait photography, people's lives
Arrival in Mandalay. Group meeting. Depending on the time of the group meeting, sunset shooting on the river bank.
Mandalay. Life in the capital. Dawn shooting at U Bein Bridge. City markets. Stone artisans street. Monasteries and temples. Life on the river. In Mandalay we will visit the famous teak bridge - U Bein - which has long been a symbol of Myanmar.
Drive to Sagaing. Filming at female Buddhist monasteries and at the monastery school. Mingun. Pagodas and Buddhist temples. We have told a little about Sagaing above and in Mingun we will see a giant bell, a huge stupa - all traces of the reign of King Mi
We leave for Bagan. On the way we will have a lot of interesting shots and we will meet the sunset on one of the ancient pagodas.
This day we will spend completely in ancient Bagan. Dawn shooting from one of the pagodas. Buddhist monasteries. Rural life.
Road to Mindat. Head into the mountains to visit the Chin people - mysterious tattooed women. Christian missionaries came here in the last century and built Protestant churches.
Mindat. We spend the day in Chin villages, taking photographs and chatting with the locals.
Return to Bagan.
Depart for Inle Lake. After lunch departure by boat. Familiarisation with the lake. Genre photography of fishermen on the lake.
Inle Lake. Day by boat on the lake. Exploring Inle Lake. Floating vegetable gardens and villages on the water. Local market. Life on the lake. Fisherman. In the temple complex. Forest monastery. We will also have the opportunity to meet a family of long-n
Flight to Yangon. Transfer to the hotel. Shooting in the Chinese area of the city.
Takes photos in Buddhist monasteries. Feeding of monks. Sunset shooting at Shwedagon Pagoda. Summing up the results of the trip.
Transfer to the airport. Return home.