Burma At The Crossroads

Dates:
October 10, 2014October 22, 2014

Emerging from decades of global sanctions and 50 years of military rule, Burma’s recent political and policy reforms are reintroducing this once isolated country to the world.  Burma at the Crossroads will explore the country’s vibrant culture; understand its tumultuous history; engage in dialogue with locals to understand contemporary life in Burma; and meet social, educational, political and humanitarian groups shaping the future of the country.

Since Nobel Peace Prize laureate Aung San Suu Kyi’s release from house arrest in November 2010, the military junta ceding power to a civilian government in 2011 and the National League for Democracy’s (NLD)’s victories in the 2012 by-elections, the mood on the streets in Burma is one of palpable optimism.  All of this makes now a fascinating time to visit and witness the rapid changes in this once inaccessible country.

In addition to visiting many of the country's cultural and historic sites (Shwedagon Pagoda, the pagodas of Bagan, the ancient cities around Mandalay, U Bein Bridge, etc.), Burma at the Crossroads will meet with human rights advocates, members of Aung San Suu Kyi's National League of Democracy, Shan minority representatives, and local craftspeople and artists to gain a first hand understanding of the country directly from its people. Our trip includes visiting the breathtaking Inle Lake and meeting with the Ministry of Tourism in Bagan to learn about tourism impacts and opportunities for the local economy.

While the changes in the past year and a half have been extraordinary, Burma still remains one of the least developed and poorest countries in the world; and continues to be one of the most repressive governments in the world.

Note: Burma has been experiencing a tourism boom the past year and the rise in international visitors has outpaced the development of its tourism infrastructure.  Due to the high demand for limited hotel rooms and other tourism facilities, prices continue to increase haphazardly. Because of this, we encourage all interested participants to book early so travel arrangements can be promptly finalized.

Due to the volatility of the Burmese Kyat’s exchange rate and fuel, transportation and hotel rates in Burma; tour prices may be adjusted if prices suddenly rise.

Read a report back from our first trip to Burma.

Photos by Christopher Ho.

Program Highlights may include: 

In addition to visiting many of the country's stunning sites (Shwedagon Pagoda, the pagodas of Pagan, the ancient cities around Mandalay, U Bein Bridge, etc.) we will dig deeper and meet with human rights advocates, members of Aung San Suu Kyi's National League of Democracy, craftspeople and artists. Our local guides will offer unprecedented access to local people and groups.

Cost: 
$3,100 5 participants; $3,000 6-9 participants; $2,890 10-12 participants; $2,790 13-15 participants
Price Includes: 
  • Accommodations on a double occupancy basis (Single supplement: $680)
  • All meals (breakfast, lunch and dinner) as specified, except for Day 1 (dinner only) and Day 12 (breakfast only)
  • Drinking waters (2 bottles of water per day per pax)
  • Local English speaking guide accompanying the group throughout the tour
  • Program activities as specified in itinerary
  • All entrance fees to sites as specified in itinerary
  • Domestic flights and airport taxes as specified in itinerary
  • Honoraria for speakers and donations to community groups
  • Vehicle transport as specified – air conditioned coaches, open-air boats, horse carts and chartered local Nawarat boat from Mandalay to Bagan
  • Bottled water during meals and refresher towel when on local operator’s vehicles and boats
  • Baggage handling at airports and in hotels
  • Gratuities

How to Register: 

We must receive your application and a non-refundable deposit of $500 at the time of booking. The remaining tour balance is due 90 days before the departure. Payments by Mastercard, Visa and Discover are welcome.

This trip will be as diverse as possible in terms of race, age and life experiences. In some cases, a limited number of partial scholarships are available for low-income applicants.



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