A personal note from Ales!
Having written a couple of newsletters about the ‘off the beaten path’ country of Myanmar, I would like to share an itinerary which might be interesting to those of you who are looking for something a little more spiritual.
I often get requests from individuals who don’t want to just go on a journey to visit the usual sites of any given destination but rather have an experience away from it all, where they can just be and often this includes being able to practice meditation, yoga or something as simple of just being in a quiet environment.
As Myanmar is still relatively undiscovered we can now offer a wonderful meditation style retreat, and of course any other kind of travel experiences in this amazing country, which can be created just for you and below you will find one possible itinerary, keeping in mind that it can be completely customized.
Some of you might like to just spend 2 or 3 days to meditate and spend the rest of the time discovering the country and having experiences with its people, others might like to spend longer time at a monastery. You decide what your experience should look like.
Please let me know what your thoughts are on this kind of experience and also ask any questions you might have.
Day 1 Yangon
Arrive in Yangon, check into your hotel, and then visit some of the revered Buddhist sites in this bustling city, including the central Sule Pagoda, the hollowed-out Botataung Pagoda and then head for sunset to the huge and dazzling Shwedagon Pagoda.
Day 2 Yangon to Mawlamyine
In the morning take the 5-hour drive to Mawlamyine, the tropical capital of Mon state and one-time administrative centre of British Burma. This quiet city has many colonial buildings lining its streets and the hilltop Kyaik Than Lan Pagoda offers wonderful views of the surrounding area – it was a short visit here that inspired Rudyard Kipling to write his famous poem Mandalay.
Day 3 – 7 Pa Auk Forest Monastery
Practice Samasa and Vipassana meditation at the Pa Auk Forest Monastery. The monastery is situated in the lush Taung Nyo mountain range to the east of Mawlamyine, where the environment is considered perfect for long-term and intensive meditation.
The monastery caters to foreigners and lessons are provided for those who are new to meditation.
The Abbott and principal teacher at the monastery is the Venerable Pa Auk Tawya Sayadaw; he speaks English fluently and has been teaching foreign meditators at the monastery since the early 1990s.
Day 8 – 9 Mount Kyaiktiyo
Drive to Mount Kyaiktiyo, one of the three most sacred sites in Myanmar. Climbing the mountain is an act of merit to Theravada Buddhists, and the golden rock at its summit is said to cover a hair of the Buddha, appearing to defy gravity by delicately balancing on the edge of the 1,100m peak. There are platforms at the top where you can practice meditation under the shadow of the pagoda and you will stay at a hotel at its summit, offering magnificent views of the area.
At the end of second day, return to Yangon by car.
Day 10 Departure
Breakfast at the hotel and then prepare for departure.
I’ve been passionate about travel ever since I can remember. Having had the opportunity to travel all around the world for many years it’s my greatest desire to enrich peoples lives in a profound way by creating unforgettable journeys, and give each of my clients the amazing experiences I’ve had throughout my travels.
By allowing me to design your journeys, you can be assured that you will be taken care of from the moment we start planning your vacation until the moment you return. Contact me and let me know where you would like to go or let me help you find the destination that will give you the experience you are looking for.
May all your travels stir your soul and change your life forever – Ales.