January 14-31, 2019

In partnership with Dhamma Yatra, this pilgrimage will concentrate exclusively on those sites connected to the four principle figures in the lineage of S.N. Goenka: Ledi Sayadaw, Saya Thet Gyi, Webu Sayadaw, and Sayagyi U Ba Khin. Pilgrims will have the opportunity to visit monasteries, pagodas, caves, meditation centers, kutis, and more related to the lives of these four great meditation masters. This will include sites where they were born, ordained as monks, practiced intensive meditation, gave discourses, taught meditators, and where they passed away. Pilgrims will have the opportunity to meditate, give dana, and take photographs, and participate in Question & Answer sessions with senior monks. Each site tour will be given in comprehensive detail, featuring history, anecdotes, stories, and more; the result of nearly five years of intensive research. This is the ideal pilgrimage for those who want to understand the lives and works of these four great figures!

Please note: every day two hours will be set aside for meditation time, often taking place at the sites we will be visiting.

Program:

  • Visit 12 separate regions of Myanmar, and many more sites. 
  • Traces the lives and achievements of Ledi Sayadaw, Saya Thet Gyi, Webu Sayadaw, and Sayagyi U Ba Khin.
  • Daily group meditation sittings
  • Healthy vegetarian food
  • Sangha Dana at a monastery
  • Guided tours of every site, prepared from years of intensive research
  • Personal interaction with senior monks, including translated Dhamma talks and Question & Answer.
  • Travel to remote regions rarely frequented by foreign meditators
  • Pilgrimage will be led by both a local Burmese guide as well as a foreign expert

Rates:

The total cost for one person's enrollment in this 18-day pilgrimage is $2,500 (USD) or € 2050,-.  For full booking terms and conditions please refer to Dhamma-Yatra.

What’s included:

All the essentials are included in your overall pilgrimage rate, and if anything is needed that is not included, you can contact us ahead of time for your needs. For complete details, see here:

All Pilgrimages include the following services:

  • All travel within the country, including airport transfer.
  • Breakfasts and lunches.*
  • Occasional tea, juice, and snacks.
  • Complete pilgrimage amenities, such as Shan bag, longyi, pilgrimage scarf, etc.
  • Mosquito net and bamboo mat for monastery stays. For more information on additional items you may need, see here

*Note that dinner is not included as many practitioners (and all monastics) do not eat after 12:00 noon. Pilgrims who wish to eat in the evening may either take their own meal or request dinners to be included prior to the pilgrimage. Also note that all food is vegetarian. For non-vegetarian, vegan, or other requests, please contact us before the pilgrimage.

  • Double-room hotel occupancy.* For those who wish to have their own private accommodation, please alert us in advance.
  • One printed copy of the meditator's guidebook to Myanmar (Shwe Lan Ga Lay: The Golden Path)
  • All entrance fees
  • At least one Danā (donation) ceremony at a monastery

*This is for hotel stays only. Please review your detailed pilgrimage itinerary to see the status of potential monastic stays.

 

PLEASE NOTE THAT THE FOLLOWING IS NOT INCLUDED IN ANY PILGRIMAGE OPTIONS, UNLESS BY SPECIAL REQUEST: 

  • Myanmar Visa
  • Gifts and souvenirs 
  • Dana (donation) to monasteries
  • Internet and phone usage
  • Special medicine (outside of the first-aid kit)
  • Travel in and out of Myanmar, and any travel before or after the pilgrimage. (For trip add-ons, please see here)
  • Additional snacks, treats, drinks, etc.
  • Dinners, unless otherwise arranged

Trip Itinerary:

DAY 1: YANGON

Orientation starts in the afternoon, followed by an evening visit under the gentle golden glows of Shwedagon. We will tour and meditate here. 


DAY 2: YANGON

A full day for exploring the city sites. Just some of the special places included today are International Meditation Centre (IMC), established by Sayagyi U Ba Khin; Dhamma Joti, the first Vipassana center in the tradition of S.N. Goenka in Myanmar; Hansarwaddy, the only Yangon meditation center established in Saya Thet Gyi's lifetime; the Accountant General's Office Building, where Sayagyi U Ba Khin worked and first taught the Dhamma, and more. 


DAY 3: PYAW BWE GYI (OVERNIGHT IN YANGON) 

On this day we retrace the boat journey undertaken by a 37-year old Sayagyi U Ba Khin and head across Rangoon River, then proceed a further 8 miles south to the home village of Saya Thet Gyi. We will see the original tazaung where he first taught meditation and then go to Anauk Monastery where he later moved to, among other village sites connected to his life.  


DAY 4: TRAVEL TO PYINMANA/NAY PYI DAW 

Today we will travel to Myanmar's newly established capital.


DAY 5: PYINMANA AND NAY PYI DAW 

The full day will be split between the dazzlingly new national capital, and the rural village where Ledi Sayadaw spent his last days. The two highlights include Maha Ledi Monastery, where Ledi Sayadaw lived the last two years of his life; and the breathtaking Uppatasanti Pagoda, unlike any other in the country.


DAY 6: DRIVE TO MANDALAY 

Today we drive from the current capital to the last capital of the Burmese kings, Mandalay. After some rest, we will take in some pagodas and enjoy a peaceful evening meditating sitting.  


DAY 7: MANDALAY 

This is our full day in Mandalay, and there is a lot to see! Included in the schedule is Dhamma Mandapa, a downtown Vipassana center; Maha Bodhi Meditation Center, in the Saya Thet Gyi tradition; the grand Maha Myat Muni Pagoda, where Goenkaji got his first taste of the Dhamma with his grandfather; and Shwegyin Monastery, the oldest and most important monastic site of the former royal capital. 


DAY 8: KYAUKSE (OVERNIGHT IN MANDALAY) 

The main site today is Webu Monastery in Kyaukse. This is where Webu Sayadaw emerged after years alone in the wilderness. We will see many sites here associated with his life, including the kuti where he met Sayagyi U Ba Khin, the hill (Shwe Thar Hlaung) where U Ba Khin climbed when he first spotted this kuti, and much more. 


DAY 9: DRIVE TO MONYWA 

In the morning we will drive to Monywa, and after lunch we'll visit Mohnyin Monastery, one of the first "meditation monasteries" of the 20th century, founded and taught by Ledi Sayadaw's most important monastic disciple. Nearby is the historic and magnificent Bodhi Ta Htaung Monastery, which similarly began as a meditation site and today has some of the largest Buddha images in the world. 


DAY 10: MONYWA 

It has been said that Monywa is "where it all began," and today we'll explore these Dhamma beginnings. First on our list is the Ledi Sayadaw Forest Monastery, built on the spot where Ledi initially retreated to the forest in February 1887. We'll see several pagodas where Ledi briefly resided before venturing into the forest, and finally enjoy a sunset meditation sitting at Shwe Taung Oo Pagoda on the Chindwin River, just outside the caves where Ledi meditated, taught, and wrote his dipanīs for several years. 


DAY 11: AROUND MONYWA 

The main site today is the caves of Hpo Win Taung and Shwe Ba Thaung. Many centuries old and featuring incredible rock carvings, murals, Buddha images, and meandering monkeys throughout, this is also where Saya Thet Gyi meditated on his own after receiving his instructions from Ledi Sayadaw. 


DAY 12: SAIN PYIN/INGYINBIN 

In the morning we will drive to Sain Pyin village, where Ledi Sayadaw was born and ordained. After taking lunch here and visiting the sites, we will reach Webu Monastery in Ingyinbin village. Time will be set aside to settle in at the monastery and meet the senior monks.


DAY 13: INGYINBIN 

Today is the full day tour, and there is so much to see! The entire morning will focus on the Patipatti Monastery, the meditation compound founded by Webu in 1927. Then in the afternoon, we'll explore the important sites in the much older Pariyatti Monastery, and then finally the remaining place of importance in tiny Ingyinbin village. Pilgrims will hear a number of stories related to the great monk and concerning Sayagyi U Ba Khin's ordination here as well, gaining an understanding for the history behind this special place.  


DAY 14: INGYINBIN

Ingyinbin is a very special place, so today is a free day for pilgrims to do with as they wish. One may choose to sit a self-meditation course, have rest time, explore more parts of the monastery and village, do Dhamma service, or talk with senior monks or the young novices and nuns. 


DAY 15: SHWEBO (OVERNIGHT AT SAGAING)

We will leave Ingyinbin in the morning and spend extended time at Webu Sayadaw's third monastery, in Shwebo, established in 1940. The very large compound has a rich history, and we'll see the very room where Webu stayed and meditated in. We'll then take a brief stop at Kaung Hmu Daw Pagoda before staying the night in Sagaing.


DAY 16: SAGAING

The Sagaing Hills, the self-proclaimed "Abode for the Noble Recluses", are a must-see for any serious Vipassana meditator. For centuries, meditation-minded monks have retreated here to practice ardently, and every corner features some tale or reminder of this august history. This is also where a majority of the country's nuns live, and where Goenkaji's good friend Sitagu Sayadaw set up his International Academy, Sitagu. We will explore as much of this as will be possible as these two days afford!


DAY 17: SAGAING 

Included in these two days are Prekhemma Monastery, one of the oldest sites in the Hills that may date back nearly 1,000 years; Htut Kaung Monastery, founded by an 18th century monk who practiced vipassana and supported female monastics; Sitagu Academy and Sitagu Vipassana Center, two important sites which have come to dominate the Sagaing community; Setkya Ditthi, a progressive and inspiring nunnery; Mo Kaung Chaung, a nunnery that runs vipassana courses in the tradition of Saya Thet Gyi; and much more!


DAY 18: SAGAING 

The pilgrimage will be finished after breakfast! We will take final photos and have our final sitting, and then meditators are free to go in their own directions. The pilgrimage will end with all meditators being given one return bus ticket to Yangon, which they may use for tonight or for any future date.

SUBJECT TO CHANGE

Change (anicca) is a fundamental principle of Dhamma practice, and same applies to our pilgrimage schedule. At times, a planned visit may have to be changed due to a sudden and unexpected event connected with the monastery or monk in question, At other times, a unique opportunity may arise in the moment that we want our pilgrims to take advantage of. While we will make every effort to follow the schedule listed here, this will be balanced with being open to the possibilities and realities of the present moment.

MONASTERY STAYS

Note that this pilgrimage includes 3 nights at monasteries. To learn more about sleeping in Burmese monasteries, see here

ADD-ONS

Want to come a little earlier or stay a little longer? If so, there are enough sacred sites to fill your days. See here for more information.

PREPARATION

Once you have decided to book your pilgrimage, make sure you arrive prepared. Learn everything you need to know about planning before your plane touches down, including what to bring, and especially special items needed for meditators. 

THE ART OF A PILGRIMAGE

Still considering whether or not to join a pilgrimage in the first place? Read how a pilgrimage is different from a standard tourist trip, why we think Burma is special, or what a Myanmar Pilgrimage trip will offer instead of doing it on your own.

You can also read about our company mission, or see the comments of past pilgrims.

QUESTIONS?

If you have any further inquiries, feel free to contact us any time here. We hope to see you soon in the Golden Land!

Flights to / from Rangoon can be booked directly or with our partner Mosquito Adventures (www.moskito-adventures.de).

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With your booking the travel program is operated and administrated by our partner Moskito Adventures, Albrechtshainer Str.1b, 04824 Beucha, Germany (www.moskito-adventures.de).
Terms and conditions of Moskito Adventures (AGB) will be effective.

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