It was a real pleasure to meet you and your family in Yangon. We had known you only through email, so it was good to get to meet the real person behind the emails, as well as your lovely family.
I just wanted to write and let you know that we had a marvelous time on our trip. We felt that there was a good variety of things to see and experience, the guides were excellent, the hotels were generally excellent, and the food was very good. Thank you for being flexible in changing our food menus from part western and part Burmese to all Burmese. We very much enjoyed the Burmese cuisine.
The only negative of the trip was the fact that we were scheduled to visit Golden Rock on a three-day national holiday weekend (Independence Day). After a five-hour drive we were met with an additional hour of traffic jams and general chaos with thousands of people trying to catch trucks up the hill. At the top, the crowds were so dense that we never did get all the way out to the Golden Rock and the pagoda. Coming back down was a bit better, but there were lots of delays with the trucks, and another major traffic jam getting out. Fortunately, our guide Thein was very adroit in navigating all of this and making it as easy as possible for us. On the whole, I think we all felt that, aside from the traffic jams and crowds, Golden Rock was quite an amazing experience. However, we would not want to do it again under similar circumstances, that is a holiday weekend. Thein told us that under normal circumstances it is a much smoother process.
Regarding guides, Samnang in Siem Reap was very good. He was very knowledgable as well as patient and attentive to our interests and needs. We liked him a lot. In Myanmar, the highlight of the whole trip was Thein. He was simply marvelous. He was not only very knowledgable about all places we visited, but also highly informed about the history of Burma, current politics, cultural matters, the various ethnic groups that make up Myanmar and many other things. He was very friendly and personable at all times, very attentive to our needs and interests, and also quite flexible in terms of scheduling and in making substitutions when some of the sites on the agenda didn't match our interests or capabilities (for example Mt. Pope). We really enjoyed the time we spent with him, and at the end of the trip he felt more like a friend than a guide.
(18th Dec 2015 - 3rd January 2016) 17 Days Myanmar & Cambodia Tour