Thurs 14 Flight from London 20.20 arrive 07.10 Abu Dhabi (6hr + 4hr time change)
Fri 15 Flight 09.10 arrive 18.15 Bangkok (5hr 30m + 3hr time change )
Hotel Riva Surya, Bangkok
Sat 16 AYUTTHAYA, the former Thai capital
Bang Pa-In Summer Palace
Wat Panan Cherng – large seated Buddha that seems too big for the room.
Wat Mahathat – Buddha head enshrined in the trees
Wat Phra Mongkhan Bophit – one of Thailand’s largest Buddha images
Royal Palace & Wat Phra Sri Sanphet - largest temple in Ayuthaya, used by many Kings
Sun 17 MARKETS AND FESTIVAL
Mae Klong railway market
The Tha Kha Floating Market
King Rama II Memorial Park at Amphawa - traditional Thai style buildings & botanical gardens.
Khoa San Road – old city
Loy Krathong Festival
Mon 18 BANGKOK TEMPLES AND PALACE
Wat Arun (The Temple of Dawn)
Wat Pho (Temple of the Reclining Buddha)
Royal Grand Palace
Wat Phra Kaew (Temple of the Emerald Buddha)
Wat Traimitr (Temple of the Golden Buddha)
Tues 19 KANCHANABURI - Tiger Temple, Train ride along the death railway
Wed 20 Air Asia Bangkok Don Muang Airport to Mandalay 10.55 arr 12.20
Courtesy coach into Mandalay (1 hr drive)
RV Thurgau Exotic II,
Thurs 21 - MANDALAY & AMARAPURA
City tour of Mandalay, the former Royal capital of Burma. Visit Mahamuni Pagoda, with its famous Buddha image, covered with a thick layer of gold leaf. Continue to the Shwenandaw Kyaung monastery, a silent reminder of the ancient Royal Palace. Also visit some workshops - a gold leaf workshop and a silk and cotton weaving factory. At sunset go to Amarapura to visit U-Bein bridge world’s longest teak bridge, built in 1784.
Fri 22 - MANDALAY & MINGUN
Morning continue tour of Mandalay with a visit to the central market and a stone carver workshop. Cast off at lunch and sail upstream. Afternoon visit to the famous Mingun Paya, believed to be the biggest pagoda in the world. However, after the death of King Bodawphaya in 1819 the construction was halted. See the largest hanging bell in the world which weighs over 100 tonnes. Evening - traditional Burmese dance performance onboard.
Sat 23rd - SAGAING & AVA
Early morning sail downstream past Mandalay. Excursion to the beautiful Sagaing Hills. With its many hermitages and monasteries, Sagaing is an important religious and meditation centre. Visit the 14th century Sun-U-Ponnya-Shin pagoda on the hilltop and stop at a nunnery. Continue by horse cart to the ruined city of Ava (Inwa). Relax in the afternoon as we sail downstream and enjoy a lecture onboard about Burmese traditions and customs.
Sun 24 - YANDABO
Morning walk through the picturesque village of Yandabo with its many family-run potteries. Yandabo is best known as the location of the signing of the peace agreement after the second Anglo – Burmese war. This afternoon we will visit a small riverside village.
Mon 25 - BAGAN
Bagan is the former Royal historical capital and, with more than 3000 Buddhist shrines, it is a major archaeological centre in South East Asia. We will spend the morning visiting some of the most important temples and pagodas. Return to the ship for lunch before exploring the area further in the afternoon.
Tues 26 - TAN GYI TAUNG & SALE
Arrive at Tan-Gyi Taung in the morning and drive up the hill by minibus to enjoy the view. Afterwards an elephant dance performance by local artists on the river shore. In the afternoon explored the little town of Sale with its impressive colonial villas and the 150 year old teak monastery with magnificent wood carvings.
Wed 27 - MAGWE
Relax in the morning as we sail downstream and enjoy a lecture onboard. Afternoon excursion to the surrounding area of Magwe including a visit to the holy “Dragon Volcano” at Minbu. Continue to the famous Myat Thalon pagoda in Magwe to enjoy the sunset over the Irrawaddy River.
Thurs 28 - MAGWE & MINHLA
Morning city tour by local rickshaw with a visit to a large local market and a blacksmith. Continue to the fortress of Minhla on foot; it was built by Italian architects to help the Burmese King keep the British at bay from advancing their troops towards the north.
Fri 29 - THAYET MYO
Thayet Myo was once the border town between the Royal Burmese North and the British Colonial South. Visit the local post office and enjoy a visit to the town and market. Afternoon sailing downstream. Presentation onboard about exotic fruits and vegetables and traditional Burmese medicine.
Sat 30 - PYAY & SHWE DAUNG
Morning excursion to Pyay, once an important trade town on the Irrawaddy River. Visit the local ancient library with an amazing collection of ancient art. Shwesan-Daw pagoda then the village of Shwe Daung, with its famous Buddha statue wearing glasses. Sail past the famous cliffs of A Kauk Taung with amazing stone carvings. Visited Pyay Gyi Temple (6th-7th AD) upon our return.
Sun 1 Dec - MYAN AUNG
Morning walk in the small town of Myan Aung with its many well preserved colonial houses and busy local market. Cooking demonstration to prepare a traditional Tea leave salad.
Mon 2 - DANUPYU & MA U BIN
Morning excursion to Danupyu by local rickshaw with a visit to a century-old monastery with a botanical garden, the Pyilion Chanta Pagoda to see the 97 year old 399 marble slabs inscribed with the Tripitaka text, and a traditional cigar factory.
Tues 3 - IRRAWADDY DELTA & YANGON
Early morning sail to the confluence of the Irrawaddy and Yangon Rivers, then continue through the Twante Canal to Yangon. Afternoon city tour of Yangon, the former capital, with a visit to the Shwedagon Pagoda, the city’s famous landmark, and to the Scott Market.
Wed 4 - YANGON
Change of plan - due to food poisoning issues at the Kandawagyi Palace Hotel we decided to return to Bangkok.
Yangon to Bangkok Don Muang Airport (1hr 20min flight +30 min time shift) 12.50 arr 14.40
Hotel Riva Surya, Bangkok
Thurs 5 - BANGKOK
Ocean World and Siam Centre
Phatpong streets and market. Moon Bar, Banyan Tree Hotel
Fri 6 - BANGKOK
Vimanmek Palace and Ananta Samakorn Throne Hall. Asiatique
in the evening.
Sat 7 - BANGKOK
Flight return to London 19.50 arr 23.35 Abu Dhabi 02.35 arr London 06.35 Sunday (17hr 40m)