Riding into the mountains in Burma (officially the Republic of the Union of Myanmar). Photo by Tim Manning

The Buddhist Shwedagon Pagoda is considered the most sacred in Myanmar. It sits on Singuttara Hill, Yangon. Photo by Tim Manning

Burma Adventure Bike Tour

Burma Bike Tours

Explore central Burma by mountain bike

  • This is a cycling adventure for those seeking a unique experience. Burma (Myanmar) was described by Rudyard Kipling as "unlike any land you know about." Exotic and mysterious, Myanmar will hold you in its spell. Once a forbidden land, Burma still remains sheltered from the outside world.

    You will explore central Burma, traveling from the Shan Plateau down to the plains and the banks of the Irrawaddy River, sharing the road with ox carts, waving children, and other cyclists. You will spend three nights in Kipling's Mandalay, where, as he memorialized, the "dawn comes up like thunder." The tour ends in Yangon with time for some shopping at the local market.

    Highlights of this exotic adventure include:

    • Inle Lake and excursion
    • Caves of Pindaya
    • U Bien Bridge
    • Exotic Mandalay
    • Temples of Bagan
    • Mt. Popa
  • Price $ 5178 £ 2563 $ 4,477 2859 $ 5286 kr 31592 $ 3,130 ​Single supplement*: $ 993 £ 491 $ 858 548 $ 1013 kr 6056 $ 600

    *You can avoid the single surcharge if you are willing to share accommodation with another traveler of the same gender. If a roommate is not found, you will enjoy a single room at no extra charge. If you prefer not to share a room, a single supplement will be incurred.

    please note

    Rates are per person based on double occupancy.

    A non-refundable admin fee of 20 Euros per person is included in the deposit amount.

    Information to read before you book.

    We recommend purchasing bike trip insurance.

    Please see our FAQ.

  • Travel

    Fly into and out of Yangon International Airport (RGN)

    Local Travel

    Taxi from airport to first hotel in Yangon.

    Climate

    Burma (Myanmar) has a tropical climate with fairly high humidity. There are three seasons: March to June is hot and dry, between 81º and 104º F (27º and 40˚C) during the day. Temperatures at night fall into the 60s F (20s C). The rainy season is from July to September, with slightly lower temperatures. The cooler season (particularly in the mountains) is from September to February, with average temperatures between 68º and 86º F (20º and 30˚C). It will be much cooler at night in the hills in the Shan State, where 2 nights are spent and adequate cold weather cycling clothing is advised.

    Recommended

    Recommended vaccinations include typhoid, polio, tetanus and Hepatitis A. A certificate for Yellow Fever is required if arriving from an infected area within the prior six days. Some areas of Burma may be considered malarial areas. Please check with your doctor prior to departure for the most recent information.

    Remarks

    Wearing a helmet is mandatory. If you do not wear a helmet you will not be allowed to cycle. Your tour leader is trained in first aid and emergency rescue, but to a large degree, you must be responsible for your own safety while riding. It is therefore compulsory that you take out travel insurance that will cover you for a mountain biking tour.

    Documents

    A visa is required for all visitors to Burma. Please make sure your passport is valid for a minimum of 6 months beyond the duration of stay in Burma. Regulations are changing quickly, but at the moment the easiest method for those flying in is to obtain an e-visa for USD $50. The e-visa will be for a single-entry to international airports only (no land borders) and is valid for 28 days after entering the country. Apply online for the visa here. It takes one week to process (have a scanned copy of the first page of your passport and a digital photo ready). The approval letter must be printed as it will be needed to board international flights and needs to be submitted to immigration upon arrival. For those crossing at a land border (Bangkok to Yangon and Burma Road tours), you must go to your nearest Myanmar embassy to obtain a visa in advance. A list of embassies abroad is available here. Please click here for more information on visa requirements.


Tour Dates

2020

January 12, February 9, March 8, May 10, July 12, August 9, September 13, October 11, November 8, and December 13, 2020

2021

January 10, February 14, July 25, October 17, November 7, and December 19, 2021

*Minimum number of participants: 2
*Maximum number of participants: 16

Special tour dates on request.

Skill Level

This is a fully supported, guided tour, designed for reasonably fit people who are confident and comfortable on their bikes. The cycling covers 498 km in 7 full cycling days and 3 half days and is considered demanding. This trip has a variety of roads ranging from roads in quite good condition to broken tarmac roads and vehicle-wide dirt trails. There is no technical riding on this trip, but there are some long days. This tour is undertaken on mountain bikes.

Where You’ll Stay

You will experience a wide range of accommodations so you have a broad cultural experience. The standard is 3-4 star hotels to guest houses. On each day’s itinerary, you will find the preferred accommodation listed. If for any reason, a change is necessary due to availability or other circumstance, the alternative will always be of the same standard or better.

What’s Included

  • 13 nights accommodation
  • Meals as listed
  • English speaking tour guide (two guides if group is larger than 8)
  • Support vehicle
  • 24 to 27 speed Trek mountain bike with lightweight alloy frames and disc/v-brakes.
  • Fruit, healthy snacks, water, and electrolyte drinks during the rides
  • Complimentary drawstring bag, water bottle, and bike jersey.

What’s Not Included

TourBike
TypeGuided
SkillDifficult
Length14 days
From$3130 Rates
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Day-To-Day Itinerary

Burma Adventure Map

Day 1: Yangon
Day 2: Yangon-Heho-Kalaw, 17 mi. (28 km)
Day 3: Kalaw - Inle Lake, 49 mi. (79 km)
Day 4: Inle Lake, 19 mi. (30 km)
Day 5: Inle Lake - Pindaya, 39 mi. (63 km)
Day 6: Pindaya - Mandalay, 39 mi. (62 km)
Day 7: Mandalay - Sagaing - Mingun - Mandalay, 28 mi. (45 km)
Day 8: Mandalay Monasteries, 16 mi. (26 km)
Day 9: Mandalay - Pyinsi - Mt. Popa, 59 mi. (95 km)
Day 10: Mt Popa, rest day
Day 11: Mt Popa - Bagan, 38 mi. (61 km)
Day 12: Bagan Temples, 18 mi. (30 km)
Day 13: Bagan - Yangon
​Day 14: Yangon

*In remote destinations abnormal conditions can prevail at any time and subject to unexpected change.  Last-minute changes to the itinerary or in accommodations may be necessary.

Day 1: Yangon
Travelers will meet at the hotel at 2 pm for a visit to Shwedagon Paya, Burma's holiest religious site, followed by a welcome dinner. (D)

Accommodation: Hotel Grand United Ahlone

Day 2: Yangon-Heho-Kalaw, 17 mi. (28 km)
Early morning flight to Heho, followed by a short transfer to the hotel in the former hill station of Kalaw. This cool, peaceful town amidst pine trees still retains its colonial feel.  An afternoon ride where you can become accustomed to the bike is scheduled through the countryside of Kalaw.  +548 m/ - 534 m (B, L, D)

Accommodation: Hill Top Villa

Day 3: Kalaw - Inle Lake, 49 mi. (79 km)
Today's ride, on paved and dirt roads, through the Burmese countryside,  will long be remembered. Though may kilometers are covered, the last section has two sweeping downhills leading directly to the shores of Inle Lake, one of Asia's most beautiful inland waters. The day ends in Nyaung Shwe, north of the lake.  +725 m/ -1169 m (B, L, D)

Accommodation: 81 Hotel Inlay

Day 4: Inle Lake, 19 mi. (30 km)
On water and on land, the day is spent exploring the lake. The day begins with 20 km lakeshore ride, through villages and past temples. Lunch will be enjoyed lakeside and then by boat, the exploration continues with a cruise to Indein temples, floating gardens and monasteries. You will see the Intha fishermen, standing at the stern of their flat bottom boats, rowing with their one leg, as they fish for their livelihood. In the evening, a visit at dusk to a vineyard is on the agenda. +165 m/ -167 m (B, L, D)

Accommodation: 81 Hotel Inlay

Day 5: Inle Lake - Pindaya, 39 mi. (63 km)
Destination today is Pendaya and the limestone caves that house thousands of Buddhas. To arrive, there are some climbs to contend with, one a major 10 km climb with a gentle gradient. The Shan State covers almost a quarter of Burma and is home to many different ethnic groups. +696m/ -396 m (B, L, D)

Accommodation: Pindaya Inle Inn

Day 6: Pindaya - Mandalay, 39 mi. (62 km)
An hour transfer will bring you to the start of the  ride to Mandalay. Initially the ride will be undulating through a patchwork of fields, followed by 30 km descent, passing through many villages, greeted by the waving local children. At the bottom of the hill, the support vehicle awaits for a short transfer into the city of Mandalay. +941 m/ -852 m (B, L, D)

Accommodation: Yadanarpon Dynasty Hotel

Day 7: Mandalay - Sagaing - Mingun - Mandalay, 28 mi. (45 km)
Leaving the city, the group cycles to the famous U Bien bridge, the longest teak bridge in Asia, and then onward to the towns of Sagaing and Mingun on the opposite side of the Irrawaddy River. Sagaing is an important religious and monastic center. Mingun is on the agenda as well with the ruins of the Pahtodawgyi. The history of the ruins and the massive Mingun Bell is quite fascinating. Lunch will feature local specialties, followed by a relaxing boat ride downstream. +172m/ -163 m (B, L, D)

Accommodation: Yadanarpon Dynasty Hotel

Day 8: Mandalay Monasteries, 16 mi. (26 km)
In the morning,  the group explores Mandalay by bike, starting with a ride to the sprawling Zegyo market, crammed with stalls and shops selling everything from food to clothing to jewelry. There will be time to explore this labyrinth before the cycling continues to see artisans weaving bamboo into large sheets to be used as roofs and walls or a crispy tofu maker. A visit to Shwenandaw Monastery, aptly named “golden palace,” is on the agenda to see this wonderfully fragile, yet grand example of 19th-century Burmese teak architecture, heavily gilded with gold and adorned with glass mosaic work and impressive carvings of Buddhist myths. The route back to Mandalay heads a different way, stopping for tea and to taste some local snacks. The afternoon and evening is free to give you the chance to explore Mandalay on your own. +64 m/ -64 m (B, L)

Accommodation: Yadanarpon Dynasty Hotel

Day 9: Mandalay - Pyinsi - Mt. Popa, 59 mi. (95 km)
There is an early start today with a ride from the hotel along the banks of the Irrawaddy River. There is a short ferry ride on the agenda and then cycling by the capital of the ancient Ava Kingdon. Here there are remnants of the city wall that protected the city that ruled upper Burma for nearly two centuries from 1364 to 1555. We continue our ride through fields of millet, sesame, cotton, and many varieties of peas and beans to the town of Pyinsi. From here, there is a transfer to Mt. Popa.  +483m/ -485 m (B, L, D)

Accommodation: Popa Mountain Resort

Day 10: Mt Popa, rest day
Our first complete day of rest does not mean that you will not be active! After breakfast, you will climb the almost 900 stairs to the top of Popa Taung Kalat, a temple that is populated by Burma’s most revered Nats (spirits). As you walk up you will pass dozens of nat shrines and see pilgrims who come to honor them. From the top you will have a panorama of the surrounding plains. The views are excellent and photographers will get some great shots. The rest of the day you are free to relax by the hotel's infinity pool overlooking the temple, or for those more adventurous there are hiking trails in the national park. (B, L, D)

Accommodation: Popa Mountain Resort

Day 11: Mt Popa - Bagan, 38 mi. (61 km)
The cycling itinerary begins with a lovely descent from the hilltops, snaking down the mountain, riding through small villages and palm gardens. You will see farmers in the fields, plowing with wooden plows and meandering water buffalo. Bagan is the destination, dotted with thousands of temples along the banks of the Irrawaddy River. +88 m/ -827 m (B, L, D)

Accommodation: Bagan Thande Hotel

Day 12: Bagan Temples, 18 mi. (30 km)
The bike is the perfect way to explore the ancient temples of Bagan that spread across the enormous plain, numbering over 2000. It is one of the most breathtaking sights in the world. 
As the day warms up, you can enjoy a relaxing afternoon by the pool. Enjoy the sunset over the river or take your bike to catch the setting sun from the top of a temple. You will long remember the views across the plains studded with chedis or stupas.  +119 m/ -120 m (B, L, D)

Accommodation: Bagan Thande Hotel

Day 13: Bagan - Yangon
In the morning, there is a transfer provided back to the airport and then a flight to Yangon. You can view from the air some of the terrain that you have covered by bike. You will arrive in time to take a trishaw ride in downtown Yangon. Farewell dinner. (B, L, D)

Accommodation: Chatrium Hotel Royal Lake

​Day 14: Yangon
Enjoy your free morning for shopping and exploring before heading to the airport for return flight home or perhaps you are extending your stay? (B)

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