Myanmar Photo Tour: Exotic Myanmar Photography Tour

Tour Intro

Myanmar (Burma) is a developing country, full of natural beauty with primitive hill tribes, ancient pagodas and temples, silvery beaches, snow-capped mountains and untouched archipelagos. Myanmar’s iconic sights consist of what many refer to as ‘THE BIG FOUR’: Yangon with the Shwedagon Pagoda, British Colonial architecture, street vendors, and monks walking for their morning alms; Bagan with the Irrawaddy River and panoramic temple views from an optional hot air balloon; Mandalay’s monasteries and U Bein bridge; Inlay with it’s tranquil floating pagoda’s, gardens and local markets. This new itinerary now encompasses remote villages, rarely seen by other tourists, which provides a more in depth view of this amazing region and it’s people. Please join tour leaders, Eileen Muldoon and Win Kyaw Zan on this incredible cultural and photographic opportunity. The emphasis of the trip is on photography, yet this is much more, one that non-photographic travelers can enjoy just as well. While we maintain an active schedule, the pace will provide ample opportunity to explore and photograph villages, pagodas and markets, and it is an amazing journey.

WHAT TO EXPECT:On this tour you will have two photo instructors. The first being professional photographer and tour guide Eileen McCarney Muldoon, who has traveled the world leading international photography tours and is excited to be returning to Myanmar on this new itinerary. Secondly, Win Kyaw Zan is an accomplished professional photographer who is from Myanmar, and has been leading photo tours there for the last 15 years.

A note from Eileen ~
I've been told my teaching style is very fluid ~ it changes with each individual student.  Everyone has their own method of learning, so I adapt to you, rather than you having to adapt to different intructors. That is one of the reasons I enjoy leading workshops. It allows me the opportunity to spend individual time with each student.  Travel workshops attract beginner to advanced photographers and it is equally as exciting to see the beginner learn to master the controls of their camera as it is to see the proficient photographer leap to new creative heights. I have seen photography enhance the lives of many students, so I look for ways that each student can apply photography to enrich their life. ~ Eileen

Win has been voted Myanmar’s photographer of the year three times now. If you are a beginner, don’t let that intimidate you, as his second passion after photography is teaching others how to take great photos. He has been teaching for many years now, and conducts local weekend courses in Myanmar as a Nikon representative. Win knows the best places to capture just the right light on his countries iconic sights as well as get you off the beaten path, where you will be immersed in the culture and become part of the local scene.

All breakfasts and lunches are included in the tour program, Win will provide recommendations for dinners to be taken on your own or enjoy with Eileen and other fellow tour participants.

Tour Highlights

• Optional hot air balloon ride over Bagan.
• Wander villages, temples, pagodas and markets in search of images of daily life and interact with the people.
• Visit locations in the best light for making dramatic scenic photographs.
• Learn to capture the magic light & create meaningful portraits with Win’s guidance.
• Observe daily activities that define Myanmar’s culture.
• Learn to capture the essence or spirit of place through your lens.
• Twelve days with acclaimed tour guides and professional photographers.

Tour Itinerary

January 31-1: Home - Yangon

Photo By: Win Kyaw Zan

Photo Location: Myanmar

You arrive Yangon International Airport this morning and transfer to your hotel. If you wish to arrive a day earlier, please let our office know as soon as possible, as it is possible to arrange that, based on room availability. After a break to freshen up, enjoy lunch at a lovely restaurant. Afterwards head off to visit the 210-foot long Chauk Htet Kyi Reclining Buddha dating to 1905. Also visit the monasteries around the Buddha image. Late in the afternoon visit to Shwedagon Pagoda for sunset photography, followed by candle light offering. Afterwards, head back to the hotel. Overnight two evenings Sule Shangri-La Hotel or similar. (L)

February 2: Yangon
Temples

Photo By: Win Kyaw Zan

Photo Location: Myanmar

5:00 am, early morning special visit to the fish market, where you will photograph the people loading and unloading fish from the boats. Return to the hotel for breakfast, followed by a visit to Mahananda Hlaing Gu monastery to photograph the monks preparing for lunch. Next door is the nunnery to photograph the nuns studying. There will be a late lunch followed photography at the downtown and Chinatown markets. Proceed to Sin Oo Dan Jetty and photograph the long tail boats in the river, with people working by the river, the large ferry boats, and sunset. (B, L)

February 3-4: Bagan
Bagan

Photo By: Win Kyaw Zan

Photo Location: Myanmar

It is best to register for hot air balloon ($375 per person) ride six months in advance to confirm availability.

After an early breakfast, transfer to the airport for the flight to Bagan. Upon arrival in Bagan visit the Sulamani temple and photograph monks
 in the temple. After checking in to the hotel and having a break, the group will photograph in Bagan including: Ananda Temple from AD 1090, U Pali Thein from mid-13th Century, a visit to a family-run lacquer ware workshop. Also
visit Soe Mingyikyaung pagoda, Manuha Temple from AD
1059, and Nanpaya Temple. Plan to photograph sunset from Shwesandaw Pagoda from AD 1057.

Those taking optional balloon ride will start at 5:00 a.m. and return to hotel for breakfast. Depart on your drive to Shwezigon
Anauk monastery and photograph the monks, followed by a visit to Shinpintharlyaung to photograph the monks praying to the reclining Buddha. Late this afternoon visit to Minnathu Village to
photograph the village life. Drive to Dhammazika Pagoda and photograph sunset. Overnight Riverview Hotel (B, L each day)

February 5-6: Mandalay – Amarapura – Mingun
U Bein Bridge

Photo By: Win Kyaw Zan

Photo Location: Myanmar

After breakfast transfer to the airport for the flight to Mandalay. On the road to Mandalay, visit Palaik
with over 300 stupas from 11 – 15th Century. Visit Palaik weaving factories and a monastic school. Upon arriving in Mandalay, enjoy lunch at
 a restaurant, and check in at hotel. Then visit the Gold-leaf making
house, Mahamuni Temple and street of stone carvers. Drive to Amarapura
 and visit the silk weaving factories. Late afternoon, you will be at Taung Thaman Lake to photograph sunset. 


The last full day, take a early morning boat ride to Mingun, with sunrise over the village on the
way. Arrive Mingun and photograph the Myatheindan pagoda. Then the Unfinished Pathodawgyi pagoda and the world’s biggest bell. Return to Mandalay for lunch and have an afternoon break at the hotel. Visit a puppet factory and traditional art making families and workshop, which includes photographing those carving and painting. Afterwards enjoy a special visit to Amaparura to photograph the Taungthaman lake, villagers with Thanaka on their faces, photograph the fishermen around the lake and sunset over U Bein Wooden Bridge. Overnight Mandalay Hill Resort (B, L each day)

February 7-9: Loikaw

Early morning drive to the airport for the flight to Heho. Then drive on to Loikaw, where you will have an additional escort, during your stay here. He is an experienced English speaking local Kayan guide, who will be taking you to remote villages with unique tribes. The Kayan tribe is also called Padaung tribe, known to the western world as long neck people. There are a couple of sub tribes with their unique traditional costumes and you will have opportunity to visit and photograph them. Enjoy sunset photography at Taung Kew Zedi.

The next day after breakfast, drive to Pampe and explore the Kayan villages. There are villages in this region that in which people where traditional dresses. They work at weaving traditional necklaces, bracelets, and leggings. In the afternoon explore and photograph the Yainphaw tribes in their village, where there may be opportunity to photograph them weaving, or harvesting the fields. There may also be a beautiful sunset from here.

The last day you will have a chance to explore the amazing landscape surrounding the villages. Photograph and visit with the spirit pillars, pounding rice, making rice whiskey and doing traditional basket weaving, as well as a local school. They may dress up in ceremonial clothing they wear to weddings and festivals. Continue on to Pa O, and Red Lisu villages with unique traditional dress and culture. Explore their way of life in the village. Afterwards visit Silver Lake, iconic locations such as Shweletwar Monastery and Demowso and Loikaw five-day market. Overnight Loikaw Lodge.(B, L each day)

February 10-11: NaungshweHeho - Inle - Indein
Fishermen Inle Lake

Photo By: Win Kyaw Zan

Photo Location: Myanmar

Depart Loikaw and drive to Naungshwe, and proceed to Inle Lake, all transportation in Inle lake is by boat. Take a brief break after checking in to the hotel, followed by exploring and photographing the floating villages of Inle Lake at sunset.

Early the next morning photograph fishermen and their nets at sunrise, followed by breakfast back at the hotel. Proceed by boat to a local market, and then on to the archeological site of Inndein. Lunch will be taken at Nampam village, followed by photography at lotus weaving village. Photograph the floating gardens, floating villages, and sunset from the village. Overnight Amata Garden Resort (B, L)

February 12: Inle - Heho - Yangon
Monk Candle

Photo By: Win Kyaw Zan

Photo Location: Myanmar

Early morning boat ride back to Nyaungshwe, with a photography stop at Shweyanpyay monastery. Return to Heho, and take an internal flight back
 to Yangon. There will be time for shopping and street photography in Yangon. Overnight Sule Shangri-La Hotel or similar (B, L)

February 13: Yangon - Home
Reflection at Shwedagon

Photo By: Win Kyaw Zan

Photo Location: Myanmar

After early morning sunrise photography, return to the hotel for breakfast, and prepare for departure. Check out and transfer to the airport for your flight home. (B)

Pricing and Details

US Dollars based upon minimum of 8 paying participants. There is a small group surcharge of $500 if 5-7 paying participants. All our program prices are based on double occupancy unless noted in exceptions.

Single rooms are subject to availability. We try to accommodate travelers who request single accommodations, as well as travelers who are looking for a roommate. If a single room is requested, or if we are unable to find a suitable roommate, you will be required to pay the supplement.

Testimonials

Let me start by declaring my hand. I already co-teach photo workshops with Eileen at Maine Media, in London and in New York. Let me tell you why.
Ask her about camera technique, workflow or the metaphor and meaning in your work. Eileen will help your development in all these areas but more importantly, she brings a very different sensitivity to a workshop.

She has an uncanny ability to tune in to the needs of the individual student and adapt her teaching style to deliver exactly what they need. Time and again I've seen her patient creative energy guide students to achieve their best. Her very personable style and years of experience in travel photography make her an ideal group leader.
 

O Willoughby

I had the pleasure of joining Eileen in Greece. It was an incredible experience, as Eileen has a gift for teaching. She was able to accommodate all skill levels so that we all felt a great deal of accomplishment and success. Her teaching approach is clear and organized with clear goals for each assignment. My only regret is that I have not been able to join her again but I hope to soon!
 

R Andreozzi

Traveling with Eileen McCarney Muldoon over these last six years has changed my life in so many ways.  I have been to Cuba, Peru and Italy with her as well as partaking in other photography workshops in the United States.

I was in the middle of my second year  in the Rhode Island School  of Design Continuing Education Photography program when the notice for her first trip to Cuba arrived.  Within ten minutes, i made the decision to go. That first trip was life changing  with my photography, travel, instruction and learning and forming life long friendships.  Eileen is an extremely knowledgeable and professional teacher as well as an accomplished photographer and learning from her has been a gift.  She is very patient yet challenges her students to do their best work.

Whether traveling single within the group or with a partner, one feels very welcome and comfortable traveling with Eileen.  Cuba was so amazing that i have been every year since she has done this workshop followed by Peru in ’15 and just returned from an amazing trip in Italy.  I not only would like to but would plan on traveling with Eileen as often as possible in the future to places that i intend on visiting.

K F Whittemore

The first time I toured with Eileen I honestly believe I experienced several years of growth over a two-week period. On each succeeding trip I have enjoyed additional inspirational bursts. I have especially benefited from her thoughtful private critiques of my photography.  Over the past four years I’ve come to look upon her as a trusted advisor. To top it all off, she is an experienced tour leader and a pleasure to be with when traveling.

B Synwoldt

Additional Notes

In the early morning mist, Monks walk quietly in a line to collect their alms in the village. Villagers kneel at the feet of a Buddha statue to pray in many temples. Fishermen ply the waters with their unique boats at sunrise and sunset. Landscapes are studded with a thousand stupa and temples. No matter where you look, the sights are awe-inspiring. As you fill your sensor with images you'll also fill your soul with a rich experience of a lifetime. You will be assisted and guided by Eileen McCarney Muldoon and local guide Win Kyaw Zan who is also a professional photographer.

Terms and Conditions

Unless otherwise noted, this information applies to all tours.

Airfare

Contact Strabo Tours if you would like rates on International Airfare. Please note on your trip application form if you would like us to assist you with your airfare needs, a charge is added for this service. If making your own arrangements, it is important to discuss flight times with Strabo Tours before booking any airline tickets. This will avoid you having to pay airline cancellation penalties. Please contact Strabo Tours for destination airfare estimates, specific flight time arrivals, and departures.

The land cost includes:
  • Group transportation for tour events in the tour van.
  • Accommodations based on two people sharing a room, singles are assigned on a first come, first served basis.
  • Services of driver, English speaking cultural guide (if applicable) and photographic leader, during the tour.
  • Meals as listed in itinerary (B=breakfast, L=lunch, D=dinner).
  • Park entrance fees, day tours and excursions as shown in the itinerary.
  • Extensive pre-departure information and services.
The land cost does not include:

Domestic or International air fare; other airfare if noted in exceptions; air fare tax; airport departure tax; airport transfers; additional transfers or accommodations that may be required by those not traveling with the group; excess baggage charges; meals not included in itinerary; activities taken on your own; passport/visa expenses; personal medical or travel insurance; any expenses of a personal nature, such as room service, laundry, beverages not included with meals, medical expenses, photographic equipment, any activities not specified in tour itinerary or listed as optional, or any items not listed in what is included; fuel surcharges; exchange rate surcharges; upon the completion of your trip, modest gratuities to the local guides and the drivers are customary; tips for meals not included in itinerary.

Fitness and Health

The majority of trips are not strenuous (see exceptions below for particular destinations) and anyone who is reasonably fit should be able to take part in most of the activities. You may experience general fatigue due to the long flights and the change in time zones. You will need to be sufficiently agile to climb in and out of the tour van and be able to carry and manage your own equipment. We will frequently hike trails ranging from easy to moderate. Some hotels do not have elevators or air conditioners.

If you have any special needs or any physical condition that you feel might prevent you from fully participating, please contact Strabo Tours with your concerns (607-756-8676).

You should also be aware that medical services or facilities might not be readily available during all or part of your trip. This could include emergency medical care, presence of physicians, or adequate medication.

Exceptions:

The following destinations require more physical activity. Bhutan, China, Patagonia, Peru, Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands, New Zealand, Scotland, Domestic tours. On the African Safari you will spend many hours in a vehicle on game drives, land travel will sometimes be over very bumpy and dusty roads. Galapagos Cruise accommodations are in upper and lower berths (bunk beds) only.

The following destinations require more physical activity. Bhutan, China, Patagonia, Peru, Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands, New Zealand, Scotland, Domestic tours. On the African Safari you will spend many hours in a vehicle on game drives, land travel will sometimes be over very bumpy and dusty roads. Galapagos Cruise accommodations are in upper and lower berths (bunk beds) only.

Deposits, Cancellations AND Refunds

A deposit of $750 ($500 on domestic tours) per person is required. Specific tours may require an additional deposit due to accommodation bookings or transportation requirements. If applicable these will be noted on your invoice. Payment in full is required when bookings are made less than 120 days before the departure date. Space is subject to cancellation by Strabo if payment is not received when due.

If a passenger wishes to cancel they must send notification in writing to: Strabo International Tour, Co., P.O. Box 580, Dryden, NY 13053; fax 208-545-4119. At the time we receive your notification, the following per person charges apply:

  • 91 days or more before departure: $300 cancellation fee ($150 fee on domestic tours), plus Strabo’ costs, as well as fees that are charged by the suppliers providing the services included in your tour, and/or the airlines providing the air transportation.
  • 61-90 days before departure: $500 ($250 on domestic tours) minimum cancellation fee, plus Strabo’ costs, as well as fees that are charged by the suppliers providing the services included in your tour, and/or the airlines providing the air transportation. Fees may range from 25% to 100% of tour costs.
  • 60 days or less before departure or anytime after departure: NO REFUND.

Refunds for services that are voluntarily not used by you cannot be made.

Insurance

Each participant must be covered by medical insurance that is valid overseas.

We strongly urge you to evaluate your risk and to take out insurance on your trip. It is vital for you to realize that if you experience a delay or find it necessary to cancel or cut short your trip for any reason, you will lose part or the entire sum you’ve invested in it (see the section “Deposits, Cancellations and Refunds” in the trip brochure).

Travel insurance helps to minimize the risk of monetary losses you would incur in the event of a delay of your departure due to weather, airline strike, missed connection, etc., your inability to travel for reasons such as illness, injury, unforeseen financial complications and other personal circumstances, or if you were required to cut your trip short for medical or any other reasons.

There are restrictions and limitations on any insurance program. For this reason, please read carefully the enclosed pamphlet, which outlines their program of trip cancellation, baggage, and medical insurance. Trained agents are available to answer your questions, so don’t hesitate to call the toll free number in their brochure. It is to your advantage to apply for insurance at the earliest possible time, so don’t delay in making a decision.

Subject to Change

Itineraries have been carefully constructed to assure participants the best each destination has to offer; however, should events arise that are beyond our control, activities and hotel arrangements are subject to change without notice. The itineraries summarize typical areas you will explore. Since there is no possible way to visit all of them, your guides will plan each day considering the interests of the group and the weather at hand. Be assured that we will make substitutions that are as similar in quality and interest as possible.

Photo Release

Strabo International Tour Company, Inc. reserves the right and permission to use photographs of individuals on tour for use in promotional and publicity purposes. We also reserve the right to use clients photographs for promotional and publicity purposes, when submitted to Strabo International Tour Company, Inc.

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