Bagan Temple Marathon, Myanmar

Marathon Half Marathon 10k
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Itinerary

FIVE NIGHT ITINERARY

Wednesday, November 21 –  Welcome to Myanmar! Arrive in Yangon International Airport and make your way to the hotel for check-in. Transportation from the airport is not provided, but there are plenty of taxis and the distance is not long.  At the hotel your tour leader and local guide will assist with the check-in and give information about the coming days. The rest of the day is free to explore Yangon on your own.

Thursday, November 22 – The day will begin with a city tour of Yangon in an air-conditioned coach. The first stop is one of the most iconic symbols of Yangon, the Shwedagon Pagoda, which is considered by many to be the 'heart of Myanmar'. The pagoda is believed to be more than 2,500 years old and the central stupa is surrounded by dozens of intricately decorated buildings and statues. Next is a visit to the Chauk Htat Gyi Pagoda to see the magnificent reclining Buddha. From here, you'll go to the floating Karaweik Royal Barge and enjoy the quiet settings around the lake. Lunch will be at a nearby restaurant where you’ll taste the exquisite Myanmar cuisine. After lunch, you'll head to the airport to catch the flight to Bagan. Flight time is approximately one hour and twenty minutes and via a short stopover in Mandalay we will arrive at Nyaung U Airport just outside the Bagan Archeological Zone.  After checking into the hotel, the rest of the day is free for you to become acquainted with the magnificent landscape of Bagan. (Breakfast included)
 
Friday, November 23 – Today we'll explore the ancient area of Bagan. We’ll start with a visit to Old Bagan, the centre of the ancient kingdom. Here we take a closer look at the Bupaya pagoda, which offers great views to the Ayeyarwaddy River and nearby mountains. We continue to the Shwezigon
pagoda, built in the 11th century by King Anawratha. Still an active place of worship it stands today as one of the most astonishing and well-kept pagodas in all of Bagan. We finish our sightseeing with a visit to the lesser visited pagodas at Tayok Pyi Paya and the village of Minnanthu, both part of the running course tomorrow. Back at the hotel the rest of the afternoon is free to relax and prepare for tomorrow’s race. In the evening we carbo-load with a pasta dinner in the hotel or a nearby restaurant. (Breakfast and dinner included)
 
Saturday, November 24 – Today’s the big day! After an early breakfast at the hotel, we hop on a coach to Hti Lo Min Lo Temple where the marathon, half marathon and 10K race start and end. Running amid the pagoda-studded landscape, we’ll experience Bagan in all its glory and pass by small picturesque villages and farmland. After the race, we’ll enjoy some snacks on the steps of the iconic Hti Lo Min Lo Temple. Shuttle busses will take all participants (runners and spectators) back to the hotel where the rest of the day and evening can be enjoyed as you prefer. (Breakfast included)

Sunday, November 25 –Explore Bagan on your own, sunset tour and celebration dinner Today is free to relax, enjoy and explore at your own pace. Whether you want to relax at the hotel with a cold drink or rent a bike and explore more of Bagan is up to you. If your legs can carry you why not pay a visit to Ananda Temple, a whitewashed masterpiece of Mon architecture. With its four standing Buddhas and adjacent brick monastery with well preserved 18th century murals, this temple is one of Bagan's most significant. Close by is also the Thatbinnyu Temple dating from 1144, also known as the temple of omniscience. Or why not pay a visit to one of the local villages or follow the running course to the majestic Dhammayangyi Temple for a closer look. In the late afternoon we’ll meet and the rest of the evening is dedicated to celebrating our achievements of yesterday. A festive dinner and awards ceremony will lead to an unforgettable evening.(Breakfast and dinner included)

Optional Activity: Balloons over Bagan (duration 45 minutes)
On this unique excursion, the gentle wind will take the role of commander, guiding you through a serene and peaceful sight-seeing journey of Bagan’s temples and landscapes. Your day will begin with an early ride from your hotel on one of the vintage buses dedicated to the journey, and upon arrival to the location, snacks, coffee and tea will be expecting you.As you enjoy the refreshments, you will be able to witness the preparation process of the balloons being inflated. This is followed by a safety briefing and then, at dusk, it is time for take off! The balloons are piloted at no more than 15mph by skilled professionals with years of experience, who also enjoy to narrate the speed/direction strategies of steering the balloon. This experience provides an ever-changing perspective of the archeological sites and beauty of Bagan you won’t be able to seize otherwise. Please note that due to the limited space in the basket, there are weight and height requirements. After a graceful landing of the balloons, staff will be waiting for you with fresh pastries, fruits, and a glass or two of sparkling wine to conclude this excursion with a celebration of your flight.  Weight, height and age requirements apply.
 
Monday, November 26 - After an early breakfast and checkout, we head to the airport for our morning flight back to Yangon. Flying time is approximately 1 hour and 20 minutes and arrival in Yangon is estimated before noon. However, flight times are not yet confirmed and delays do occur, so it is NOT recommended to book your onward flight out of Yangon earlier than 3:00 PM. You can also choose to extend your stay in Myanmar and book the tour to the idyllic Inle Lake, go to the perfect beach retreat at Ngapali Beach or explore the less visited Chin State including a climb of Mt. Victoria. (Breakfast included)

 

SEVEN NIGHT ITINERARY

Monday, November 19 - Welcome to Myanmar!  Arrive in Yangon International Airport and make your way to the hotel for check-in. Transportation from the airport is not provided, but there are plenty of taxis and the distance is not far. If assistance is needed a Meet and greet guide will be present after customs have been cleared. At the hotel your tour leader and local guide will assist with the check in and give information about the coming days. The rest of the day is free to explore Yangon on your own.

Tuesday, November 20 - The day will begin with a city tour of Yangon in an air-conditioned coach. Our first stop will be one of the most iconic symbols of Yangon, the Shwedagon Pagoda which is considered by many to be the 'heart of Myanmar'. The pagoda is believed to be more than 2,500 years oldand the central stupa is surrounded by dozens of intricately decorated buildings and statues. Next we’ll pay a visit to the Chauk Htat Gyi Pagoda to see the magnificent reclining Buddha. From here we go to the floating Karaweik Royal Barge and enjoy the quiet settings around the lake. If weather permit we will see a panoramic view of Yangon from a helium balloon flight taking you up to 50 meters above the ground. The balloon will take up to 15 persons on each ride. It’s attached to the ground with steel cables. We'll enjoy lunch at a nearby restaurant where you’ll taste the exquisite Myanmar cuisine. After lunch, we’ll head to the airport to catch our flight to Mandalay. Flight time is approximately one hour and thirty minutes. After checking into the hotel in Mandalay, the rest of the day and evening can be enjoyed as you prefer. (Breakfast included)

Wednesday, November 21 - After breakfast, we head off for more exploration of Mandalay and its surroundings. Starting from the ancient royal capital of Amarapura, we are heading to the world’s longest wooden bridge that was built in 1782, the U Bein Bridge, which spans 1.2km. Next, we will also pay a visit to Burma's largest Buddhist monastery: Mahagandayon Monastery. It is home to more than 1,000 monks and monks to be. Our journey continues to the highly revered Mahamuni Pagoda where we will also see the work of local craftsmen. We will enjoy lunch at a local restaurant followed by a visit to what is known as the world’s largest ‘book’, the Kuthodaw Pagoda, which houses the entire collection of Buddhist scriptures. (Breakfast included)

Thursday, November 22 -  Following an early breakfast, our group will drive to the Irrawaddy River, where a boat will take us on a journey to one of southwest Asia’s finest treasures, Bagan. This boat trip takes approximately 8-9 hours, and the atmosphere onboard is quite relaxed. While underway, we will witness life along the river and cruise past cities, monasteries and pagodas. We will arrive early in the evening, just in time to witness a beautiful sight – golden rays light as the sun sets over the 42 sq. km. grassy plains of Bagan and its more the 3,000 historic Buddhist temples. This mystical landscape is sure to take your breath away.(Breakfast included)

Friday, November 23 - Today we'll explore the ancient area of Bagan. We’ll start with a visit to Old Bagan, the centre of the ancient kingdom. Here we take a closer look at the Bupaya pagoda, which offers great views to the Ayeyarwaddy River and nearby mountains. We continue to the Shwezigon pagoda, built in the 11th century by King Anawratha. Still an active place of worship it stands today as one of the most astonishing and well-kept pagodas in all of Bagan. We finish our sightseeing with a visit to the lesser visited pagodas at Tayok Pyi Paya and the village of Minnanthu, both part of the running course tomorrow. Back at the hotel the rest of the afternoon is free to relax and prepare for tomorrow’s race. In the evening we carbo-load with a pasta dinner in the hotel or a nearby restaurant. (Breakfast and dinner included)

Saturday, November 24 - Today’s the big day! After an early breakfast at the hotel, we hop on a coach to Hti Lo Min Lo Temple where the marathon, half marathon and 10K race start and end. Running amid the pagoda-studded landscape, we’ll experience Bagan in all its glory and pass by small picturesque villages and farmland. After the race, we’ll enjoy some snacks on the steps of the iconic Hti Lo Min Lo Temple. Shuttle busses will take all participants (runners and spectators) back to the hotel where the rest of the day and evening can be enjoyed as you prefer. (Breakfast included)

Sunday, November 25 - Today is free to relax, enjoy and explore at your own pace. Whether you want to relax at the hotel with a cold drink or rent a bike and explore more of Bagan is up to you. If your legs can carry you why not pay a visit to Ananda Temple, a whitewashed masterpiece of Mon architecture. With its four standing Buddhas and adjacent brick monastery with wellpreserved18th century murals, this temple is one of Bagan's most significant. Close by is also the Thatbinnyu Temple dating from 1144, also known as the temple of omniscience. Or why not pay a visit to one of the local villages or follow the running course to the majestic Dhammayangyi Temple for a closer look. In the late afternoon we’ll meet and the rest of the evening is dedicated to celebrating our achievements of yesterday. A festive dinner and awards ceremony will lead to an unforgettable evening.(Breakfast and dinner included)

Optional Activity: Balloons over Bagan (duration 45 minutes)
On this unique excursion, the gentle wind will take the role of commander, guiding you through a serene and peaceful sight-seeing journey of Bagan’s temples and landscapes. Your day will begin with an early ride from your hotel on one of the vintage buses dedicated to the journey, and upon arrival to the location, snacks, coffee and tea will be expecting you.As you enjoy the refreshments, you will be able to witness the preparation process of the balloons being inflated. This is followed by a safety briefing and then, at dusk, it is time for take off! The balloons are piloted at no more than 15mph by skilled professionals with years of experience, who also enjoy to narrate the speed/direction strategies of steering the balloon. This experience provides an ever-changing perspective of the archeological sites and beauty of Bagan you won’t be able to seize otherwise. Please note that due to the limited space in the basket, there are weight and height requirements. After a graceful landing of the balloons, staff will be waiting for you with fresh pastries, fruits, and a glass or two of sparkling wine to conclude this excursion with a celebration of your flight.  Weight, height and age requirements apply.

Monday, November 26 - After an early breakfast and checkout, we head to the airport for our morning flight back to Yangon. Flying time is approximately 1 hour and 20 minutes and arrival in Yangon is estimated before noon. However, flight times are not yet confirmed and delays do occur, so it is NOT recommended to book your onward flight out of Yangon earlier than 3:00 PM. You can also choose to extend your stay in Myanmar and book the tour to the idyllic Inle Lake, go to the perfect beach retreat at Ngapali Beach or explore the less visited Chin State including a climb of Mt. Victoria. (Breakfast included)

Itinerary subject to change.