16 Days Burma Campaign, Battle of Imphal and Kohima

  • Group Tour
  • Price £ 3750
Tour PriceLand price with internal flights: £ 3750 per person on twin sharing basis
Single supplement: £750
FlightsWe can arrange to book flights for you through our partner travel agent or you can arrange your own flights and we will arrange for your transfer from the place where the tour starts
DatesMarch 15-30, 2020
No of days16 days
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Destinations

Kohima → Imphal → Moreh → Tamu → Kalewa → Mandalay → Meiktila → Bagan → Yangon

Overview

“The war in Burma was a combination of jungle war, mountain war, desert war, and naval war” – Colonel Fuwa Masao, Burma: The Longest War (by Louis Allen)

“…the Battles of Imphal and Kohima were the turning point of one of the most gruelling campaigns of the Second World War” – National Army Museum, United Kingdom

This is the first such battlefield tour on offer that takes in the Burma Campaign sites on both sides of the India-Burma/Myanmar frontier. And it coincides with the 75th Anniversary of the Burma campaign. In an adventurous and thrilling journey of slightly over two weeks, you will visit not only Imphal and Kohima in North east India, where some of the decisive battles of the campaign were fought but also the main battlefields in Burma/Myanma. It is an unmissable battlefield tour of the Burma Campaign. What makes this particular tour even more special is the overland crossing of the border at Moreh-Tamu – a route rich in Second World War history.

An epic clash took place in 1944 during the Second World War between the British 14th Army and the Japanese 15th Army in North East India. Together with the Japanese also came a much smaller force of the Indian National Army (INA). Centred in and around the cities of Imphal and Kohima from March to July of that year, the twin battles of 1944 involved some of the bitterest fighting the world has ever seen. The British military historian Robert Lyman describes Imphal-Kohima as one of the four great turning-point battles of the Second World War, with Stalingrad, El Alamein and Midway being the other three. In April 2013, the UK’s National Army Museum named the Battles of Imphal and Kohima as ‘Britain’s Greatest Battle’ of all time. This battlefield tour covers sites related to this great Second World War battle.

Detailed Itinerary


Day 1 | March 15, 2020: Dimapur Airport – Kohima (74 kms, 3 hrs)

Arrival at Dimapur airport and transfer to Kohima. On this first afternoon we shall have a briefing on the entire Burma Campaign at the hotel to set the context for the battlefield tours of Imphal, Kohima and Burma (Myanmar) to follow. (D)

Accommodation: Hotel Vivor, Kohima

Day 2 | March 16, 2020: The Battle of Kohima Tour

The full day Battle of Kohima Tour includes a guided walk around the famous Kohima Ridge in which we will cover the main positions of battle such as Jail Hill, DIS, FSD, Kuki Picquet and Garrison Hill. The walk culminates at the Kohima War Cemetery where, among others, one can still see the outline of the tennis court around which fierce fighting raged in 1944. We will also visit, besides others, Hill 5120, Aradura Spur and the famous Kohima Cathedral. (B,L,D)

Accommodation: Hotel Vivor, Kohima

Day 3 | March 17, 2020: Kohima – Imphal Road Tour (136 kms, 4-6 hrs)

Drive to Imphal after breakfast along the Imphal-Kohima Road. This road was built in 1944 – and remains today – Manipur’s lifeline and main connection to the outside world. On the way to Imphal we will see the Kohima WWII Museum, the historic Milestone 109 where the two arms of the British Army linked up, battlefields, a war memorial and a WWII era airfield. This drive to Imphal will take up to 6 hours since we have many stoppages en route. (B.L,D)

Accommodation: Classic Grande

Day 4 | March 18, 2020: Imphal-The Tiddim Road Tour

Heading out of Imphal on the Tiddim Road after breakfast, this tour takes in the only Japanese Memorial to the War in India, battlefields, the only Indian National Army (INA) Memorial Complex in the world at Moirang and the Loktak Lake, the largest freshwater lake in northeast India. We will also visit the recently opened Imphal Peace Museum built at the base of Red Hill – one of the main battlefields on the Tiddim Road. This tour can take anywhere between 6 and 7 hours. (B.L,D)

Accommodation: Classic Grande

Day 5 | March 19, 2020: Imphal-The Battle of Imphal Tour

Full day tour to see the WWII related sites in and around Imphal. This includes a visit to Nungshigum – the nearest battlefield from Imphal, Runaway Hill, the two WWII cemeteries maintained by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission (CWGC), the historic Kangla fort where we can see General Slim’s Cottage and also listen to the story of the Anglo-Manipuri War 1891. A traditional Manipuri lunch is also part of this tour. (B.L,D)

Accommodation: Classic Grande

Day 6 | March 20, 2020: Imphal-City Tour

A tour of Imphal city which will cover the famous women’s market, RCKS Art Gallery – a collection of history and cultural paintings of Manipur and Mapal Kangjeibung. Manipur is famous for its handloom and handicraft products and the Women’s market is the best place to pick up such things/souvenirs. Rest of the day is free at leisure to prepare yourself for the next few days in Burma (Myanmar). You can use this time to read up some books about the recapture of Mandalay and Yangon by General Slim’s Fourteenth Army. (B.L,D)

Accommodation: Classic Grande

Day 7 | March 21, 2020: Imphal – Moreh

(100 kms, 3 hrs if travelling direct, however we will have stoppages and will reach our hotel late afternoon)
The Shenam Saddle Tour- This tour takes you to the very hills that made up the Shenam Saddle position on the road to Burma/Myanmar. Hear all about the fierce fighting in the area and see if you can spot trenches dating back to 1944. At a height of some 5,000 feet, take in some truly spectacular views on all sides. Proceed to the border town of Moreh to cross the border towards Myanmar the next day. (B.L,D)
Accommodation: Elora Hotel, Moreh

Day 8 | March 22, 2020: Moreh – Tamu – Kalay – Kalewa

( 150 kms, 3 ½ hrs, if travelling direct, however, we will have stoppages and will reach our hotel late afternoon)
After breakfast, proceed to India-Myanmar border to complete immigration formalities. Cross the border to Tamu in Myanmar. Be greeted by the Myanmar team, complete immigration formalities and transfer to Kalay. If time permits, we will visit Kalewa (where the 14th Army bridged and crossed the Chindwin River in 1944) in the afternoon. (B.L,D)

Accommodation: Hotel Majesty

Day 9 | March 23, 2020: Kalay – Mandalay (internal flight)

Morning at leisure. Take the afternoon flight to Mandalay. Possible flights are as below (These timings are subject to change by the airlines. We will let you know once we get the updated schedule from airlines).

KMV-MDL 09:05-09:00 K7 727 (Monday and Wednesday only)

KMV-MDL 14:30-15:20 K7 227 (Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday only)

KMV-MDL 14:35-15:25 UB 584 (Sunday and Wednesday only)

Arrive at Mandalay Airport and transfer to hotel. Rest of the day is free at leisure. (B,L,D)

Accommodation: Mercure Mandalay Hill Resort

Day 10 | March 24, 2020: Mandalay

A full day guided tour of Mandalay covers a visit to Mandalay Hill, a famous Buddhist site and a key battlefield of 1945, a visit to Mandalay Fort (the old Fort Dufferin), which was subjected to a British siege the same year, and to see the reconstructed Mandalay Palace inside. (B,L,D)

Accommodation: Mercure Mandalay Hill Resort

Day 11 | March 25, 2020: Mandalay – Bagan (180 kms, 5 hrs)

Drive from Mandalay to Sagaing ( 45 mins). Cross the magnificent old Inwa Bridge (Ava Bridge) over the Ayeyarwaddy River (Irrawaddy River) en route. Visit the Japanese WWII pagoda and memorial complex in the Sagaing area, with its stunning views of the surrounding countryside. Continue on to Bagan [approx. 4 hours]. Catch a dusk or dawn (next day) view of the famous pagodas in Bagan. Transfer to hotel. (B,L,D)

Accommodation: Bagan Lodge

Day 12 | Bagan – Meiktila (170 kms, 3 hrs)

Set off by boat to see some of the 14th Army crossing sites on the Ayeyarwaddy River (Irrawaddy River) in the vicinity. Drive to Meiktila [approx. 4 hours]. Catch a glimpse of Mount Popa en route and the battlefields around Taungtha. Retrace the route taken by the tanks and troops of the British 14th Army to Meiktila, its primary target in the battle for Burma (Myanmar) in 1945. Transfer to hotel in Meiktila. (B,L,D)

Accommodation: The Floral Breeze Hotel

Day 13: Meiktilla – Mandalay (140 kms, 2 hrs)

See the two lakes of Meiktila around which the fighting had raged in 1945, as well as the railway station and a pagoda complex. Drive back to Mandalay in the evening. Transfer to hotel. (B,L,D)
Accommodation: Mercure Mandalay Hill Resort

Day 14: Mandalay – Yangon (internal flight)

Take the morning flight to Yangon. Visit the main WWII sites in the city, including the Rangoon War Cemetery and the Holy Trinity Cathedral. Do a walking tour of colonial Yangon in the afternoon. (B,L,D)

Accommodation: Chatrium Hotel

Day 15: Yangon – Sittang Bridge

Drive out of town [approx. 2.5 hours] to see the remains of the old railway bridge over the Sittang River that was the site of a British disaster in 1942. Visit the Taukkyan War Cemetery on the way back. See the stunning Shwe Dagon pagoda in Yangon at night. (B,L,D)

Accommodation: Chatrium Hotel

Day 16: Yangon – Departure

Transfer to Yangon International airport for your onward journey.

Inclusions & Additional Information


Inclusions

  • All transfers and transport as per itinerary
  • All accommodation as above
  • English speaking battlefield tour guide throughout the tour
  • Local guide in Myanmar
  • All meals as mentioned (B=breakfast, L=lunch, D=dinner)
  • All entrance fees on tour as mentioned
  • Domestic air tickets

Exclusions

  • International air tickets
  • Insurance
  • Personal expenses
  • All drinks
  • Visa application/fees (please check and apply here: For India: https://indianvisaonline.gov.in/evisa/tvoa.html For Myanmar: https://evisa.moip.gov.mm/)
  • Tips
  • Other expenses not mentioned on the itinerary

Accommodation

Visas

Currency

Vaccinations

Smoking

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