Are you a cave lover? Hpa-An offers plenty of caves for you to explore. Saddan Cave and Kawgun Cave are popular ones among locals and tourists. In addition to the mysterious caves, there are more to offer - the beauties such as Kyauk Kalat, Shweyinmyaw Pagoda and view of Zwegabin Mountain will take your breath away.
The new day starts with Mawlamyine, the capital of Mon State. It is the destination that has so much to offer and hence, it’s difficult to name the best places. Some churches were built by the British in their colonial time and also the antique monastery where Sein Don Queen lived. During a short visit, you will be able to cast a glance at Mon culture and tradition. The half-day trip to seaside pagoda, Kyaikkami is worth visiting. On your way back to Mawlamyine, Kyaikmayaw is also another famous town. The biggest reclining Buddha statue in Mudon can be appreciated from the distance.
After breakfast, you will leave Yangon for the Kayin State capital of Hpa-An. On the way, we will visit the Kawgun Cave, a natural limestone cave decorated with 7th Century arts and crafts. Afterwards, we will proceed to the Saddan Cave, another famous large cave in the state, where you can walk through the cave to the exit at the opposite end, and come back to the starting point in a small wooden ferry from underneath the mountain range. Then we will go to see the Kyauk Kalat Pagoda, built atop a large rock in the middle of a small lake. Our next stop is Lumbini Garden, located at the foot of Mt. Zwegabin, the landmark of Kayin State. To end the day with good memories, we will do sightseeing in Hpa-An city center and enjoy the sunset from Shweyinmyaw Pagoda. And we will retire back to our hotel in Hpa-An.
Today, you will embark on an inter-states journey, from Kayin capital to Mon capital, Mawlamyine. On the way to Mawlamyine, we will visit Katoe Kaw Hnat, a Mon village that boasts an old monastery, built and donated by a late Mon nationalist U Na Auk. In the afternoon, we will get to see St. Patrick, the first Baptist church in Myanmar, and the Anglican Church, modelled after England’s castles; British colonial-era houses that line up along the way to Uzina Pagoda, U Khanti Pagoda, and the View Point; the Yadanabon Myint Monastery, built by a senior queen of the country’s second last king; and finally the city’s landmark Kyaikthanlan Pagoda overlooking the city, the best sunset viewpoint. Overnight stay in Mawlamyine.
In the early morning, we start our journey by travelling southward along the coast to visit Kyaikkami, a pagoda built on a small island off the shore, facing the Gulf of Mottama and the Andaman Sea. On the way back to Mawlamyine, we will visit another famous town, Kyaikmayaw. The imposing seated Buddha image is the immense pride of the town and its people. Moreover, a long stretch of tropical palm trees bordering the road on both sides is one of the most idyllic landscapes you will ever see. If you are a foodie, local food and fruits are really fresh and delicious. On return to Mawlamyine, you will end your day by strolling along the best Strand road in Myanmar, taking in a deep fresh breath of sea air and watching the spectacular sunset in the horizon. Overnight stay in Mawlamyine.
Today, we will go shopping at Mawlamyine’s main bazaar, where aqua products such as fish paste, fish sauce, and dried prawns are mainly up for sale. Having spent a few hours in the market, we will head off to Bago, a 16th-Century royal capital, where the Shwemawdaw Pagoda, the city’s landmark and Myanmar’s highest stupa; and the Shwe Thalyaung, a 55-meter-long reclining Buddha image, are waiting to inspire us. On the way back to Yangon, we will stop over at the Taukkyan War Cemetery where Allied and Commonwealth soldiers in WW2 were buried.
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