Sunday, 25 February 2018


Please book all travel arrangements to this area with us at least 4 weeks in advance of travel in order to give us enough time to secure your travel permit.

Known as Fort Hertz during the colonial period, Putao is the last town of any size in the far North of Myanmar. Almost cut off by land from the rest of the country, this peaceful country town is the gateway to Myanmar’s last great wilderness; the foothills and mountains of the Eastern Himalaya – crowned by the imposing ice-capped Mt Hkakaborazi, the highest mountain in mainland South East Asia. Only around 500 foreign travellers visit this remote town and the valleys beyond each year making this one of the most untouched and unspoilt corners on earth.

The town of Putao, population 10,000, sits in the picturesque Putao valley at an altitude of 1,320 feet in far northern Kachin State. The population of the region is a mixture of tribal peoples; Lisu, Rawan, Khamti-Shan, Kachin and the few remaining Tarong, the only pygmy race in Asia. Most people are farmers and live a very simple, uncomplicated lifestyle. Kind and hospitable, the people grow hill rice, maize, gourd and marrows. In the hills many villagers still hunt for game and fish the ice-cold mountain rivers using conical fish traps and harpoons.

The hills and mountains surrounding the valley are heavily forested and home to rare species of orchids. The foothills are covered in sub-tropical evergreen forest which gives way at higher altitude forests of oak, maple, birch, walnut, chestnut and rhododendron trees. Conifer forest takes over at around 2,750 metres and gives way to alpine meadows at around 3,700 metres. These bio-diverse forests shelter a wealth of wildlife; Takin, Red Panda, Himalayan Black Bear, Red Goral, various species of rare Monkeys, Wild Boar, Musk Deer and Flying Squirrel are present as well as hundreds of species of butterfly.

Putao is the base for exciting treks, mountain climbs and expeditions into the wild lands of the beautiful Far North. The short Rawan and Lisu Trail itineraries are designed as an introduction to the region for those who can spare only a few days. These are easy treks and feature charming countryside and overnight stays in tribal villages. The longer ‘Last Village’ trek is a bit more strenuous and takes you through lovely forest to Ziyadum, the last habitation before the mountains of the Indian border.

You’ll need to be reasonably fit to tackle the other treks and expeditions on offer. The ‘Last Frontier’ trek spends 9 days in very remote country, walking trails, crossing suspension bridges and staying in villages that see almost no foreign visitors at all. The goal of the Mt Phongun Razi and Mt Phangran Razi Expeditions is to scale those fantastically scenic peaks on the Indian border, staying in villages and campsites along the way. And finally, there is the amazing Adunglong Valley trek to and through Hkakaborazi National Park, to find the village of the almost extinct Tarong race.

The Far North is open to visitors during the dry months of October to May. All visitors must be booked onto a tour as independent travel here is not allowed. Flights serve Putao twice a week, on Tuesday and Friday and start in Yangon, with stops in Mandalay and Myitkyina en-route. All of our tours include all accommodation, meals, guides, porters, road transport and bedding / camping equipment. All the tours can be extended with additional nights in Putao and daytrips to surrounding towns and villages. It is also possible to link two tours together, for instance the ‘Last Frontier’ trek and the ‘Mt Phongun Razi Expedition’. All prices are based on four persons travelling and small supplements apply for smaller groups. Please contact us for more details. Putao is also the base for Virgin River Rafting on the scenic Nam Lang and Mayhka Rivers – please see the ‘Adventures’ page for details.


The Rawan Trail - 4 Days

The Lisu Trail - 5 Days

The Last Village - 8 Days

The Last Frontier - 12 Days

Phongun Razi Expedition - 12 Days

Phangran Razi Expedition - 15 Days
tarong1 The Adunglong Valley - 26 Days
+ Switzerland of Myanmar Extension - 3 Days
+ Mt. Hkakaborazi Base Camp Extension - 10 Days


Last Updated ( Friday, 29 January 2010 09:24 )  

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