Cycling the Burma Road
Most people have heard of Route 66 in the US and the Great Ocean Road in Australia, but lesser known is the Burma Road, unless you are a war history buff. Originally a supply line for the Western Allies during WWII, the Burma Road has since lost its strategic importance, which makes it a perfect road for cycling.
Our Burma Road tour starts at Kunming, China, where we take a short flight to Baoshan, to begin our adventure. Cycling on this historical route we'll realize the difficulty in building the road as we cycle up and down mountains and cross the Salween River. The road leads us deep into the volcanic region of Tengchong where hot springs abound, and we'll absorb ancient Chinese traditional architecture in the village of Heshun. Along the way we'll pass small villages where people still live their rural life in harmony with nature, many wearing their traditional ethnic clothing. We leave China from the lively border-town Ruili and start our first leg of Burma in Muse. Here the road continues over rolling hills, making the riding challenging and interesting. A downhill ride takes us to Lashio, the terminus of the Burma Road. We'll take breaks to visit temples, ancient chedis, waterfalls and a former Shan palace, as we approcah the former colonial British hill station town of Maymyo, now called Pyin Oo Lwin. Here we'll visit the manicured botanical gardens before riding down to Mandalay, where we end our journey of the Burma Road.
|Tour Cost||US$3,150||Single Supplement||US$425|
|Bike Hire||US$170||Total Cycling Distance||878 kilometres|
|Tour Grade||out of 5||Number of Days||14 days / 13 nights|
|Number of Cycling Days||11 full / 1 half day||Tour Meets||Kunming, China|
|Tour Ends||Mandalay, Burma||Countries Visited||China, Burma|
|Group Size||Minimum 2. Maximum 16.||Minimum age on scheduled departures||18 years old|
- Day 1
- We will meet at the Kunming Sakura Hotel for a trip briefing and welcome dinner.
- Day 2
- Catch a morning flight to Baoshan and we start our tour off by riding straight away on the Burma Road. This historic road will take us to a less visited part of Yunnan, as we pass through farmlands, small villages and cycle deep into valleys.
- Day 3
- Today we cycle toward the volcanic region of Tengchong. There are more than 80 hot springs in the area and we'll end the day with a soak in one of them. The road surfaces will vary between smooth tarmac to cobble stones to dirt roads.
- Day 4
- We ride through the countryside as we cross paddy fields, over stone bridges, and a classic cobbled street leads us to Heshun village, a charming ancient town with traditional rustic tiled roofs.
- Day 5
- Continuing on the Burma Road we cycle along the Daying River, and the closer we get to Burma we'll notice there are a myriad of ethnic tribes. During our ride we'll pass many kilns along the way, with the finished pottery and tiles stacked outside.
- Day 6
- We'll cycle past water buffaloes grazing, golden stupas shimmering in the distance, as we head to the border town of Ruili.
- Day 7
- We cross the border and follow the Burma Road into Burma where we explore the countryside around Muse.
- Day 8
- An early start for a long day of riding on rolling hills. As we pass from one valley to another, the road snakes, winds and climbs through a heavily forested canyon, on our way to Kutkai, a remote trading village.
- Day 9
- We start the day off with an easy flat ride, then we have a speedy downhill with switchbacks and then the road undulates until we reach Lashio. We'll stop to visit Mansu Pagoda, which offers a dramatic view over the town.
- Day 10
- Back in the saddle for an uphill start to the day. We'll take a break at the very large teak K Ning Monastery, before cycling on to Hsipaw.
- Day 11
- Wake up very early this morning to visit the pre-dawn market in Hsipaw. Though most of today's ride is on tarmac, there will be some cobble stones and single track on dirt thrown into the mix.
- Day 12
- On our way south to Pyin Oo Lwin we’ll pass by the amazing Gotiek Viaduct and stop at Pwe Kauk Falls. Many colonial buildings still fill this lovely hamlet of Pyin Oo Lwin and the gardens throughout are far more English inspired than Asian.
- Day 13
- We visit the immaculately manicured Kandawgyi Gardens that are adjacent to our hotel and then as we leave town we'll pass by the Aung Htu Kan Tha Pagoda. We have a fabulous downhill ride today, descending 1,000m to Mandalay.
- Day 14
- The morning is free before heading to the airport for the flight home.
|Date||Availability||Price||Single Supplement||Bike Hire||Book|
|October 13, 2013||Guaranteed to Depart||USD 3,150.00||USD 425.00||USD 170.00|
|November 10, 2013||Guaranteed to Depart||USD 3,150.00||USD 425.00||USD 170.00|
|February 23, 2014||Available||USD 3,150.00||USD 425.00||USD 170.00|
|March 23, 2014||Available||USD 3,150.00||USD 425.00||USD 170.00|
|October 12, 2014||Available||USD 3,150.00||USD 425.00||USD 170.00|
|November 9, 2014||Available||USD 3,150.00||USD 425.00||USD 170.00|
|December 21, 2014||Available||USD 3,150.00||USD 425.00||USD 170.00|
China had great climbs on little travelled roads - wonderful for me. We were very well cared for. The drivers were excellent. KK, is a keen and expert birdwatching guide.
Charlie Ferrell - October 2012
Burmese guide very good in pointing out potential dangers. I thought his care and attention was excellent.
David Gunn - October 2012
Our guide was excellent, helpful and extremely professional at all times.
Clare Makepeace - December 2011