Type of tour:Guided
Duration:13 Nights
Distance:40 Miles/day average
Dates: Oct 12, Nov 9, Dec 21*, 2014. Jan 11, Feb 22, Mar 22, Oct 11, Nov 8, Dec 20, 2015. (minimum 2 participants) *guaranteed to depart
Tour price:US$3550
Start city:Kunming, China
End city:Mandalay, Burma
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The Remote Passage
Cycling the Burma Road

Tour Description: Guided

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. The original Burma Road was completed in 1938 as a supply line for the then British colony of Burma running from Kunming in Yunnan, China to Lashio, Burma. During WWII, when Japan was at war with the British, they captured the road, and the Western Allies built an alternative, known as the Ledo Road, running from Assam, India, connecting to the border town of Muse.

The first trucks brought supplies to China on this route in 1945 and since then the route has 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.

We'll stay in a variety of accommodation along the way and this will include a hill station resort, guest houses. There will be some basic nights, but that only adds to the adventure!

A note about weather: Yunnan is well known for its mild climate year-round. In fact, its name translates to: “south of the clouds.” Despite having a mild climate – extremes can be found especially at higher altitudes. The region we are riding has ideal temperatures year-round where winter never drops below 4c and summer doesn’t climb above 25c.

Myanmar/Burma has a tropical climate with fairly high humidity. There are three seasons: from March to June it is hot and dry, with temperatures between 80-104F (27-40C), and with night temperatures in the 60s (F). The rainy season is from July to September. The cooler season (particularly in the mountains) is from September to February, with average temperatures between 68-86F (20-30C). It can be cold at night in the hills in Yunnan and Shan state and adequate cold weather clothing – gloves, hats, jacket - is required.


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