Golden Rock, Hpa An & Mawlamyine Adventure - 5 Days

Tour Code: ST-5D4N-1

A perfect combination of nature reveal with caving trek in Hpa An and lovely countryside in Mawlamyine. Mountain, caves, pagodas, and un-spoilt villages make this tour unforgettable. The visit up to the Golden Rock is particularly nice at sunset or sunrise.

Start ~ Yangon, Myanmar
Finish ~ Yangon, Myanmar
Physical rating: 3 out of 5

The Itinerary

After breakfast start the drive to Bago, around 1½ hours drive. On arrival, you will visit the charming monastery of Thamanay, a renowned teaching centre for monks from neighbouring regions who wish to study Buddhism. The tour continues to the thousand year-old Shwemawdaw Pagoda which has a spire taller than that of the Shwedagon Pagoda. Afterwards head for the Kin Pun ‘base camp’ around 3 ½ hours drive away. Lunch will be taken at a local restaurant en-route. 

This afternoon you will visit one of Myanmar’s landmarks, Kyaiktiyo, which is famous for its precarious position and religious importance. The ‘Golden Rock’ is a huge boulder completely covered by gold leaf and delicately balanced on the edge of a cliff.

To reach the pagoda from Kin Pun, a steep 6-miles road leads to the top of the mountain. The journey is made in open trucks, which can be crowded but once you reach the top, you will be amazed by the breathtaking views, pilgrims chant, light candles and meditate. On arrival at the hotel, check in and then you have time to watch the sun set over the Golden Rock.

Accommodation: Hotel

Meals: Meal is not included on this day.

Should you wish to this morning, rise early to witness the stunning sunrise over the Golden Rock. This will require an early, and is optional!

After breakfast at the hotel, return back to Kin Pun base camp by the truck, then set out on the drive to Hpa An, capital of the Kayin State, a journey of around 3 hours. On arrival in Hpa An, you will check in the hotel.

This afternoon, take a tuk-tuk and set off to visit Sadan Cave (typically only accessible from November to April), a naturally formed cave that takes 15-20 minutes’ to walk through, along a long dark tunnel (with lights). On the other side of the cave, you will find beautiful countryside and a small lake on which you can enjoy a short canoe ride, passing under a stone cave and past paddy fields.

Then return to the tuk-tuk and proceed to Shweyinhmyaw Pagoda which is located at the banks of the Thanlwin River. Afterwards stop at Lake Kantharyar for a good view over the distant Zwekabin Mountain, one of the most famous landmarks in the Karen State and 772 metres (2532 feet) high.

End the day with a visit Kyauk Ka-Lat, an unusual pagoda which is built on layers of natural karst rock formations. Surrounded by a lake, the scenery guarantees a great photo opportunity. You can watch the sunset here before returning to your hotel for an evening at leisure.

Accommodation: Hotel

Meals: Breakfast

After breakfast at the hotel, transfer to a private charter boat, and set off down the Thanlyin River towards Mawlamyine. This journey will take around 2 hours, through some beautiful karst scenery and rustic riverside village life. On arrival, you will transfer to your hotel to check in.

This afternoon, set out to explore Mawlamyine. Take a car ride through this once thriving port city and colonial post. The sightseeing includes a visit to Mahamuni Pagoda – one of the major temples in Myanmar, Seindon Mibaya Kyaung – where King Mindon’s queen sought refuge, the first Baptist church and Zyegyi Market. At the end of the day enjoy the sunset from Kyaikthanlan Pagoda, which is also known as the Kipling Pagoda due to the gleaming spire that was eulogized by Rudyard Kipling. Later return to your hotel to relax.

Accommodation: Hotel

Meals: Breakfast

After breakfast at the hotel, set out to explore Bilu Island, where a true Myanmar experience far away from modern civilization awaits you. Discover the serene scenery of paddy fields and quaint villages that are home to small cottage industries & workshops where typical Myanmar walking sticks, rubber bands, pipes and pens are produced. Return to the mainland for lunch in a local restaurant.

After lunch, you will drive past rubber plantations on the way to Thanbyuzayat which is around 90 minutes’ drive south of Mawlamyine and was the western terminal of the infamous Burma-Siam ‘Death Railway’. Here you will see a locomotive dating from World War II, a small museum about the railway and an Allied War Cemetery which is the resting-place for over 3500 Allied POWs. Afterwards return to Mawlamyine late afternoon.

Accommodation: Hotel

Meals: Breakfast

After breakfast at the hotel, a scenic drive through rubber plantations and local villages will take you back to Yangon (approx. 6 hours drive). Once returned to the city, you will be dropped off at the hotel to spend the evening at leisure.

Meals: Breakfast

Don’t forget you can modify this tour. Whether you enjoy travelling as a part of a small group with other like-minded travellers, or perhaps you are looking for your very own private journey, we have the right option for you. Click on talk to us button to send us your enquiry.