Join us on a Journey of a Lifetime

January 20 – 30, 2020

Trip Highlights

Throughout this 10 day, 11 night expedition, you’ll enjoy the wonders of exotic Myanmar from the colonial city of Yangon, to the ancient temples of Bagan, to the amazing floating islands and towns on Inle Lake, nestled against the Shan Hills.

Best of all you’ll experience traditional village life, witnessing firsthand the transformative power of Shanta’s partnerships with these amazing people who are pulling themselves and their children out of poverty and into possibility.

Itinerary for January 2020 Shanta Insight Trip

1/20:  Trip officially begins at 6PM with dinner
1/21:  Sightseeing in Yangon
1/22:  Fly to Nyaung Shwe
1/23:  Nyaung Shwe
1/24:  Inle Lake
1/25: Inle Lake
1/26:  Visit villages
1/27:  Villages
1/28:  Travel to Bagan
1/29:  Bagan
1/30:  Final day, return to Yangon

Yangon

From our base at the elegant Sule Shangri La, we will spend a night and a day in Yangon.  We’ll explore a glorious Buddhist pagoda, colonial era buildings, markets and more, all the while treating our taste buds to Myanmar’s tantalizing flavors. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shwedagon_Pagoda

SHANTA STAFF AND PARTNER VILLAGES

Prior to visiting the villages, we’ll visit Shanta’s office in Nyuang Shwe, meet our amazing staff and talk with them about the programs they implement and their experience working with the partner villages.  We’ll stay at the Lovely  Hotel 81.

Meeting the happy and hard-working Pa’o people in our partner villages and briefly experiencing their lifestyle is an experience you will never forget.  We will tour Shanta’s projects: schools, clean water systems, pig farms and coffee crops, and celebrate the strides they are making.  You will be treated to tea in their homes and hear about the impact of Shanta’s work as village life happens all around you — farmers plowing fields with oxen, religious parades, children riding water buffaloes and women pounding turmeric root.

Fisherman on Inle Lake

Inle Lake

Truly a world apart, we’ll explore the traditions, culture, arts, floating gardens and villages on stilts at this one of a kind shallow lake, then relax in our private over-the-water bungalows at the luxurious Treasure Resort and Spa.. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inle_Lake

Balloons over Bagan, Myanmar

BAGAN

An ancient city with the largest concentration of Buddhist temples, pagodas, stupas and ruins in the world, many dating from the 11th and 12th centuries, Bagan is a cultural feast.  You can relax at our lovely resort hotel and spa or explore the wonders of the city.  You’ll even have the option of a sunrise balloon ride over the temples (not included in the trip cost) https://www.go-myanmar.com/the-temples-of-bagan

TRavel Conditions

We recommend that you think of this trip as an expedition rather than a vacation. While much of our trip will be spent in luxury hotels and resorts, and Myanmar’s airlines are in line with global standards, we’ll also be in rural villages where Myanmar’s status as a developing country will be in evidence.

Myanmar has been in the news quite a bit with the atrocities committed against the Rohingya ethnic group.  We work far from the plight of the Rohingya so our partner villages are safe to visit.

In-country travel can require very early departures, regardless of those late-night conversations with fellow travelers. Having said that, we will do our best to ensure your comfort and safety throughout the trip.

Travel to the villages will be in mini-buses and will take approximately three hours.  We’ll be traveling on bumpy dirt roads and travel may be slow. We will be spending two nights in Pin Mi Kone, a village in their fourth year of partnership with Shanta Foundation.  Staying in the villages is a bit like camping.

You will sleep indoors in the home of a village family, on a mattress with blankets, but without electricity. We may split up between a few homes, but you will be sharing a room with other trip attendees and Shanta staff.  Shanta provides brand new foam mattresses, bedding and mosquito nets.

There will be no running water or flush toilets.  Shanta will provide drinking water. Toilets are in a small outhouse with a squat toilet.  They will usually have toilet paper, so no worries.  There will be water taps for washing up before going to bed, but don’t plan on taking a full shower until we are back in a hotel.  (Unless you want the complete village experience of bathing in public, with cold water, and a lyongi wrapped around you!)

MEALS

Many past participants tell us Myanmar’s food was one of the highlights of their trip. We will be eating in restaurants that offer a variety of delicious local options. Fresh salads, noodle soups, rice, and an assortment of curry dishes are popular and common throughout the country. Western fare is often available at the resorts but we cannot guarantee it. While in the villages we will bring our own cooks to safely prepare our delicious traditional meals.

Trip Investment

$4200 per person in shared accommodation

$400 single room supplement
A $250 discount will be applied to all registrations received by July 1, 2019:

INCLUDES:

  • 11 nights lodging.
  • All in-country airfares and ground transportation.
  • 3 delicious Burmese meals per day.
  • Tours and cultural activities including guides and translators.
  • A tax-deductible donation of $1,750 to Shanta Foundation.

NOT INCLUDED:

  • International airfare to/from Myanmar
  • Travel insurance (Required)
  • Myanmar visa (Required)
  • Alcohol and personal expenses
  • (Optional) Sunrise balloon ride over the temples of Bagan (appx. $350, possibly less depending on number of participants)

REGISTRATION & PAYMENT

  • The trip is limited to 14 participants, in addition to two Shanta staff members.
  • Deadline for registration is September 30, 2019.
  • A $500 refundable deposit is required to reserve your spot.
  • Remaining balance is due no later than 90 days before the start of the trip. (October 20, 2019)

Testimonials

For more information and to register: Email Amy Hartenstine at amy@shantafoundation.org, or call 970-749-1198.