Adventurous travelers looking for an extensive trip in Southeast Asia will enjoy this 22-day itinerary that will allow you to see all of the best sites in Myanmar and Thailand. You'll begin your journey in the former colonial city of Yangon, Myanmar before heading off to see ancient some of the country's most famous temples and pagodas. Then, enjoy a few outdoor activities around Inle Lake before you jet off to Thailand and experience the exciting energy of Bangkok. End your active trip with a few days of rest and relaxation on some of the most beautiful islands in the world in Koh Lanta.

Highlights

  • Sample exciting Burmese cuisine in Yangon
  • Explore ancient temples across Bagan
  • Go on cycling and kayaking trips around Inle Lake
  • Take a walking tour of buzzing Bangkok
  • Swim and relax on the beaches of Koh Lanta

Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Yangon Yangon
Day 2 Day-Trip to Dhala - Explore Yangon Yangon
Day 3 Flight to Mandalay - Pagoda Tour Mandalay
Day 4 Cycling Trip to Amarapura - Sagaing Mandalay
Day 5 Transfer to Bagan Bagan
Day 6 Ananda Temple - Irrawaddy River Cruise Bagan
Day 7 Cycling Tour of Bagan Bagan
Day 8 Flight to Heho - Bike to Pindaya - Kalaw Kalaw
Day 9 Day Hike to Wa Gyi Myaung Kalaw
Day 10 Hike to Inle Lake Nyaung Shwe
Day 11 Boat Ride on Inle Lake - Indein Nyaung Shwe
Day 12 Cycling and Kayaking Excursion Nyaung Shwe
Day 13 Flight to Yangon - Walking Tour Yangon
Day 14 Flight to Bangkok Bangkok
Day 15 Walking Tour of Bangkok - Muay Thai Bangkok
Day 16 Bike Tour of Bangkok Bangkok
Day 17 Flight to Khao Sok Khao Sok
Day 18 Free Day in Khao Sok Khao Sok
Day 19 Transfer to Koh Lanta Ko Lanta
Day 20-21 Free Day in Koh Lanta Ko Lanta
Day 22 Departure via Krabi  

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Yangon

Shwedagon Pagoda in Yangon
Shwedagon Pagoda in Yangon

Mingalabar and welcome to Myanmar! When you land in Yangon International Airport (RGN), a driver will be waiting at the terminal to take you to your hotel. 

The former capital Yangon, also known as Rangoon, remains Myanmar's largest city and continues to be the country's most important commercial hub and gateway for most of its international visitors. Its colonial background and religious legacy make it one of the most mesmerizing places in all of Southeast Asia.

After you check in at the hotel and drop your luggage, you'll have the rest of the day free to explore the city and taste some authentic Burmese food.

Day 2: Day-Trip to Dhala - Explore Yangon

Reclining Buddha in Chaukhtatgyi Pagoda
Reclining Buddha in the Chaukhtatgyi Pagoda

You'll start your day at Pansodan Jetty, where you will take a two-deck ferry across the river to Dhala, a charming township outside the city. Once you arrive, a local rickshaw will take you through the countryside to visit a few villages and small temples, where you will be able to get a feel for the local culture. Your trip to Dhala will end with a break for tea and snacks at a local tea shop, and you will take the ferry back to Yangon around midday.

When you dock in Yangon, you'll be able to visit Chaukhtatgyi Pagoda, which is home to a 236-foot (72-meter) long reclining Buddha statue with intricate foot carvings. After you finish exploring this area, you can head to the Royal Lake in Kandawgyi Park where you can see beautiful views of the Shwedagon Pagoda and then have a chance to visit this wonderful temple. 

After you finish exploring, you'll have the evening free to spend as you'd like.

Day 3: Flight to Mandalay - Pagoda Tour

Mandalay, Myanmar
Sunset outside of Mandalay

After breakfast, a driver will pick you up at your hotel and transfer you to Yangon airport for your flight to Mandalay.

When you land at Mandalay International Airport (MDL), a driver will pick you up and take you directly to your hotel. After you check in, you'll set off on a half-day tour of the city's famous pagodas. You'll start at Mahamuni, a pagoda that houses one of the country’s most honored Buddha images, which is covered in gold leaf that is applied daily.

You will continue to Kuthodaw Pagoda, which is frequently called “The World’s Biggest Book” due to its collection of 729 marble slabs inscribed with Buddhist teachings. Directly south of Mandalay Hill, you'll see Kyauktawgyi Pagoda, which is also known as the Pagoda of the Great Marble Image. At the end of your half-day tour, you will visit Shwenandaw Monastery, also known as the Golden Monastery and the only enduring structure from the royal palace of the 19th century.

You'll have the evening free to continue exploring or relax at your hotel.

Day 4: Cycling Trip to Amarapura - Sagaing

Sagaing Hill, Myanmar
Sagaing Hill

This morning, you will pick up your rental bicycle and begin your cycling adventure to Amarapura. Your 11-mile (18 km) bike ride will lead you through farms and villages and shady paths as you pass by Ava, also known as Inwa, where you'll cross a canal by ferry. You will explore Sagaing and its 600 ivory colored pagodas and monasteries, and Sagaing Hill, which is considered the spiritual hub of Myanmar. Sagaing once housed 3,000 monks, but it is now famous for its market where you can buy pottery and see potters at work.

After you explore Sagaing, you will continue cycling to Amarapura, which was once Myanmar's capital. Known as the “City of Immortality," Amarapurna is home to the Mahagandayon Monastery, which houses more than 1,000 monks. Once the sun starts to set, you can stroll along legendary U Bein Bridge, which spans nearly one mile (1.2 km) across Taungthaman Lake and is said to be the longest teakwood bridge in the world. After soaking in the views of the water, you will head back across and meet your driver who will return you to your hotel in Mandalay.

Day 5: Transfer to Bagan

View of Bagan
The pagodas of Bagan

Today, a driver will pick you up at your hotel in Mandalay and transfer you to Bagan. The 108-mile (175-km) ride will take you southeast through the countryside, following the east bank of the Irrawaddy River and passing through charming villages to reach the temples of Bagan. During the trip, you will drive past many picturesque fields of millet, sesame, cottonseed, corn, rice, and other vegetables. Along the way, you can take breaks in the towns of Myingyan and Shwe Pyi Tha. Once you arrive in Bagan, your driver will drop you off directly at your hotel. After you check in, you'll have the evening free.

Day 6: Ananda Temple - Irrawaddy River Cruise

Irrawady River cruise
A boat cruise along the Irrawaddy River

Today, you'll visit Ananda Temple—one of the most recognizable sites in Bagan. A guide will show you around the temple, offer historical insight, and explains the variety of architectural styles in the area, including some artistic wonders from the 9th and 14th centuries.

In the late afternoon, you'll head to the Irrawaddy River and board a private boat for a cruise where you'll get to enjoy the sunset. After you return to the dock, you'll have the rest of the evening free.

Day 7: Cycling Tour of Bagan

A Pagoda in Bagan
A pagoda in Bagan

Today, you'll be able to see Bagan by bike, as you travel with your guide (between 6 to 18 miles (10 to 30 km) depending on your fitness level) through the areas of Nyaung U, Old Bagan, and New Bagan. You'll see the colorful local market, farmers on their way to the fields, kids rushing home after a day at school, and artisans putting the finishing touches on their handicrafts. After you spend a full day exploring the temple plains, famous monuments and some smaller villages, you'll return to your hotel for the evening.

Day 8: Flight to Heho - Bike to Pindaya - Kalaw

Kalaw, Myanmar
Workers in a field in Kalaw

Today, a driver will pick you up at your hotel in Bagan after breakfast and take you to Nyaung U Airport (NYU). There, you'll catch a 40-minute flight to Heho. Once you land, you'll rent a bike 15 miles (25 km) through the rolling Shan Hills, to the town of Pindaya. You'll wind through fields of crops and more villages, and your hybrid mountain bike will help you to climb the gentle hills, and a support vehicle will provide snacks and water. Once you reach Pindaya, you'll take a private transfer to Kalaw, about 31 miles (50 km) south.

Day 9: Day Hike to Wa Gyi Myaung

On a hill overlooking Kalaw
A hill overlooking Kalaw

After breakfast, you'll hike 9 miles (16 km) through Kalaw's scenic landscapes to Wa Gyi Myaung. Your journey will include challenging switchbacks as you make your way to the village on a hill with panoramic valley views. Once you reach the village, you can explore, visit a blacksmith, and tour a pottery workshop, and enjoy a communal luch in a host home or monastery.

You can then check in at your accommodation and relax for the rest of the afternoon. Your day will end with a home-cooked dinner and night at a quiet, comfortable monastery.

Day 10: Hike to Inle Lake

Inle Lake, Myanmar
A fisherman on Inle Lake

After a hearty breakfast this morning, you'll lace up your boots and set off for an 8-mile (13-km) hike to Inle Lake. After a mostly downhill trek, you'll reach the shores of the lake where a boat will be waiting for you to bring you to your hotel in Nyaung Shwe for a well-deserved rest.

Day 11: Boat Ride on Inle Lake - Indein

Phaung Daw Oo Pagoda
Phaung Daw Oo Pagoda

Join your local guide and take a short trishaw ride to the Nyaung Shwe Jetty where a private, wooden motorboat awaits for a full day excursion on Inle Lake. Explore villages built on stilts and floating gardens, getting a chance to learn about the life and culture of the lake’s residents. Stop in at workshops making incredible hand-woven silks and fabrics created from the fibers of the lotus flower.

During the day visit Phaung Daw Oo Pagoda where we can join local devotees as they come to pay homage to this sacred site. If time allows, there will also be a stop at Nge Phe Chaung, a wooden monastery with a remarkable collection of Buddha images. 

An additional one-hour boat ride down a small canal will then take you to the Pa-Oh village of Indein. At the Indein Pagoda complex—one of the most amazing sites around the shore of the lake—you'll find hundreds of small stupas which are covered by moss and greenery. After you finish exploring, you'll cruise back to your hotel in Nyaung Shwe by boat for a relaxing evening.

Day 12: Cycling and Kayaking Excursion

Inle Lake, Myanmar
A floating home on Inle Lake

This morning you will hop on a bicycle to explore the eastern side of the lake. You'll ride 26 miles (42 km) at a moderate pace along back roads and across fields and villages.

This portion of your bike ride will end at a dock, and you will have time for a quick rest before setting off on a short 45-minute kayaking excursion among the lake's floating gardens. You'll end your paddle at Kyay Zar Kone monastery, and your bicycle will be there waiting for you. 

A final 12-mile (20 km) ride will bring you to a local restaurant near the Indein pagoda complex where you'll stop and have a meal. After you finish eating, you can walk along the canals to visit a village in a bamboo forest. The day will end with a relaxing boat ride back to your hotel.

Day 13: Flight to Yangon - Walking Tour

Pansodan Street Yangon
Pansodan Street in Yangon

A driver will pick you up in Nyaung Shwe and take you to Heho Airport (HEH) to catch your domestic flight to Yangon. A driver will be waiting for you at the airport in Yangon, and they will take you to the city center for a walking tour. Over the course of two and a half hours, you will first visit colonial landmarks like Pansodan Street, Strand Road, and the Strand Hotel. Later in the tour, you will continue on to see diverse neighborhoods where you can experience a variety of cultures and religions. You might want to consult a fortune teller on Sule Pagoda Road before your tour ends. You'll spend the night at a hotel in Yangon, so you'll have the evening free to continue exploring.

Day 14: Flight to Bangkok

Bangkok, Thailand
Sunset in Bangkok

In the morning, a driver will pick you up at your hotel in Yangon and take you back to the airport to catch your one-hour flight to Bangkok, Thailand. When you land in Bangkok, another driver will take you to check in at your hotel in one of Southeast Asia’s most vibrant cities. You'll have free time to explore temples, go shopping, try authentic street food, and soak up the lights and energy of the city tonight.

Day 15: Walking Tour of Bangkok - Muay Thai

Wat Pho, Bangkok, Thailand
The reclining Buddha at Wat Pho

Today, you will go on a full-day tour and see some of Bangkok's most famous monuments. The tour starts with a visit to Wat Pho, which is home to more than 1,000 Buddha statues, including the large reclining Buddha. Continue on to Wat Phra Kaew, also known as the Temple of the Emerald Buddha, and then head to the Grand Palace, which was home to the Kings of Siam of the Chakri Dynasty.

Later, you will continue to walk to the fascinating Amulet Market where you can find a small talisman, then and climb the heavenly Golden Mountain, which offers an incredible view over Bangkok. After a break at your hotel, you will go out to experience Muay Thai, where competitors fight with their feet, arms, fists, and knees, and you'll even have a chance to step into the ring if you are up for it.

Day 16: Bike Tour of Bangkok

Wat Arun Temple at night
Wat Arun Temple at night

Today, you'll have a half-day adventure through the diverse neighborhoods of Bangkok, starting with a bicycle ride through the Muslim quarter and on to the Old Customs House. This peculiar example of European Imperial architecture on Chao Phraya River was one of the first gateways for Bangkok visitors.

From there, you will weave through a maze of tangled streets until you reach Chinatown, one of the most colorful and vibrant areas in the city, and then continue on to see floating flower and vegetable markets. A ferry ride will then take you to see some of the most charming temples in the city that are off the beaten path.

Day 17: Flight to Khao Sok

Khao Sok
Floating homes in Khao Sok

A driver will pick you up at your hotel this morning and transfer you to Suvarnabhumi Airport (BKK) to catch a one-hour flight south to Surat Thani, where a driver will be waiting to transfer you to your destination of Khao Sok. Khao Sok is a national park that hosts one of the oldest evergreen forests in the world, and it is famous for its Rafflesia parasitic flowers, abundant wildlife, and vast hiking trails. You'll have free time this afternoon to explore the forest or Cheow Lan Lake and its raft houses before settling into your camp for the evening.

Day 18: Free Day in Khao Sok

Khao Sok National Park
Khao Sok National Park

Today, you can spend your day enjoying the amazing scenery around you as you'd like. You can go on a hike, swim in a cave, or relax in a floating bungalow. There are more than 100 islands and towering limestone cliffs to see in the area. Nature lovers can spot Gibbons and hornbills in the old-growth jungle trees at the water's edge. 

Day 19: Transfer to Koh Lanta

Koh Lanta
Beach in Koh Lanta

After you check out of your camp this morning, a driver will pick you up and take you on a  140-mile (226 km) journey south to Koh Lanta. Once you arrive in Koh Lanta, you'll be able to check in at your hotel, and you'll have the rest of the day free to relax and soak up the beauty of the coral-fringed beaches, mangrove trees, rainforests, and turquoise waters.

Day 20-21: Free Day in Koh Lanta

Koh Lanta, Thailand
Boats on a beach in Koh Lanta

Soak up island life even more with the option to tour four islands on a majestic boat ride. You'll have a chance to swim through caves that open up to sunrays, explore coral reefs to see the underwater lives of fish and coral, walk on the white sands of Koh Ngai, and rest in the shade of palm trees. Get ready to be amazed by the natural beauty of these limestone islands.

Day 22: Departure via Krabi

Sunset in Koh Lanta
Sunset in Koh Lanta

It's time to say goodbye to Thailand! After breakfast, as you head to Krabi Airport (KBV) for your flight back home, or to your next destination.

Map

Map of Highlights of Myanmar & Thailand - 22 Days
Map of Highlights of Myanmar & Thailand - 22 Days