Taungoo

Inle


This vast lake is located in the heart of Shan State which shares borders with Thai & Laos. And it climbs up to over 900 metres above sea level and outrageously beautiful. Inle Lake is located in the mountains so it is cooler than other areas. More than 30 hill tribes are living in the mountains.

This vast picturesque lake, 900 metres above sea-level, is one of the main tourist attractions in Myanmar. The lake, 22 km long and 10 km across, has a population of some 150,000, many of whom live on floating islands of vegetation. Inle Lake, natural and unpolluted, is famous for its scenic beauty and the unique leg-rowing of the Inthas, the native lake dwellers.

Inle Lake, natural and unpolluted, is famous for its scenic beauty and the unique leg rowing of the Inthas, the native lake dwellers. High hills rim the lake on both sides. The lakeshore and lake islands bear 17 villages on stilts, mostly inhabited by the Intha people.

WHERE TO VISIT

Phaungdawoo Pagoda is an amazing floating pagoda in the Inle Lake. The Phaungdawoo Pagoda festival, the boat racing competition are great experiences at such time to visit for tourist. The floating markets and the lifestyles of the Inthars are also a total different environment for visitors.

AROUND INLE LAKE

Nyaung Shwe contains the main port to Inle Lake. Taunggyi hot air balloons festival is another interesting event of Myanmar. Pindaya Caves has great Buddha Images in different sizes. Kakku Pagodas are still the untouched architectures of the ancient times. Hopong and Kalaw are the other cities to visit nearby.

WHERE TO SHOP

Many international standard hotels are available. There are also some reasonable places for budget-limited travellers. The Shan food is a favourite dish in Myanmar and one can get to eat the delicious food in Inle Lake. Handicraft, souvenirs and Shan dresses are also available for you to take back home.

Around Inle

Nyaung Shwe contains the main port to Inle Lake. Taunggyi hot air balloons festival is another interesting event of Myanmar. Pindaya Caves has great Buddha Images in different sizes. Kakku Pagodas are still the untouched architectures of the ancient times. Hopong and Kalaw are the other cities to visit nearby.

Naung Shwe


Nyaung Shwe is located in the Southern Shan State near the marvelous Inle Lake. Inle Lake is situated in Nyaung Shwe Township. To visit Nyaung Shwe. one has to take a flight from Yangon to Heho. and then travel by car or bus. Or one can travel by highway buses from Yangon to Taunggyi, then pass Shwe Nyaung and reach Nyaung Shwe.

You can also study Shwe Yan Pyay Monastery. on Shwe Nyaung – Nyaung Shwe road. From Shwe Nyaung. it takes 30 minutes to Nyaung Shwe. Then. you can travel by motorboat. from Nyaung Shwe to Inlay Lake. This town is the main transfer port to Inle Lake by ferry boats.

Interesting Places

There are many interesting places in Nyaung Shwe where you can visit in a short time.

Yadana Man Aung Su Taung Pyay Pagoda

It lies on the route of the royal barge in Nyaung Shwe. Shan State (south) as one of the 84000 pagodas built by King Thiri Dhamma Thawka. It was renovated in Sakarit 721 by the Saopha of Hsiseng as he built Nyaung Shwe. It was further renovated by successive kings. finally by King Mindon's son. Saopha Sao Maung in the present name of Yadana Man Aung. In 1274. there was a big earthquake that felled the pagoda. It was renovated by Sao Maung himself to a height of 70 cubits and 160 cubits in girth that it has today as a pagoda encased in glass and golden structure.

In the tazaungs, there is Yadana Man Aung image with genuine relics. consecrated with a great deal of gold in the east Lokawidhu Yadana Qushaung Image in the south. Yadanatazaung with the hands placed together in the west and Buddha image with one hand turned upward and one hand turned down flanked by eight Arahantas in the north. In the tazaungs. buddha images were there to represent 32 Buddha from Tahningara to Gautama.

Nyaung Shwe Cultural Museum

  • Opening Hours - 9:30 am to 3:30 pm and close on every Monday and gazette holidays.
  • Entrance fee - US$ 2

Kakku Pagoda


One of the Asia's largest and most spectacular ancient monuments is a wonderful Pagoda named Kakku. It contains over 2.000 stupas with origins dating back many centuries. Its exists not only as an outstanding example of tradition art and architecture but also as a testament to the religious devotion of one of Myanmar's many ethnic minorities. the Pa-Oh. For many centuries. the Pa-Oh has lived in peace. cultivating their land and devoting much of their energy and limited wealth to creating monasteries and pagodas.

Kakku is about 33 miles from Taunggyi. It will take about 3 hours drive by car. Kakku is located in the Shan State. Kakku is in the territory of Pa-Oh people. There are over 2000 stupas packed closely together in ranks and covering an area perhaps a square kilometer. The main stupa is around 40 meters high. the mass of the spire surrounding it uniformly. But each one is an individual masterpiece. The particular remarkable about the whole site is its good state of preservation. Originally each one must have been topped by a gilded metal hti. the multi tiered umbrella-like feature. which is typical of Myanmar Pagodas. Many of these are tilted on fallen. External rendering of mortar and stucco has crumbled away on others. exposing the brick core while trees have established themselves in a few. threatening to split them apart. But so much of the originals still exist that this site must be free of the destructive force of earthquakes. which have periodically ravaged many of the Myanmar's other monuments.

External decoration on many of the stupas is simple. almost sparse. the builders. having concentrated on pure grace and form for effect. but other features elaborate decoration. Traditional motifs weave intricate patterns of arabesques and stems. to create a delicate tracery of the highest artistic merit.

Even more fascinating are the many figures. carved in stucco and apparently originally brightly painted. which adorn corner or pay silent homage beside the niches in the base. many of which still contain antique Buddha images. Angels. musicians. dancers- all created with consummate skill. The remoteness of the site and reluctance of the local people allow visitors has helped to preserve its sculptures and artistic treasures to a degree. unknown in other ancient monuments in Myanmar. Kakku is a priceless piece of mankind heritage. a truly splendid example of the creative talent of remarkable people. It will take about 3 hours drive by car.

History

The legend says that the first stupas were created by King Alaungsithu. the 12th century King of Bagan. The decorative sculptures and figures are 17th or 18th century but some of the structures are clearly much older.

Kakku Pagoda festival

Kakku is located in the Southern Shan State. Researchers say Kakku was built about 400 years ago. but there is no written records saying about that. Kakku pagoda festival is usually held during March. the fullmoon day of Tabaung. Kekku has been the center of the worship for the Pa-O people. During the festival. the Pa-O people come to pay homage to the pagoda in their best costumes. Some from near villages come to the festival with decorated bullocks.

Taunggyi


Taunggyi is situated in the southern Shan State and is the capital town of Shan States. It is 4.712feet above the sea level and has a moderate climate. Also located about 500 kilometers north of Yangon and about 10 kilometers southeast of Mandalay. The capital city of the Shan State. is situated on a high plateau surrounded by high mountains. It is situated on a high plateau surrounded by high mountains. As Taunggyi lies on a hill region. the atmosphere is conducive to good health especially by means of the salubrious mountain air. It usually rains in Taunggyi from June to November and average annual rainfall is 32.68 inches. To reach Taunggyi you first have to fly to Heho. about 40 kilometers to the West. because the town itself does not boast an airfield.

Taunggyi can be reached by road. rail or air from all parts of the country. The distance between Yangon and Taunggyi is 456 miles and can be reached by road directly. The road to Taunggyi is full of bends and zigzags and. seen from above. resembles a snake. One can have a good view of the surrounding area while travelling
along this road. As soon as you enter Taunggyi. the magnificent Sao Sam Htun Hospital can be seen first and further on there are the Taunggyi Department Store. the market. Dhammayon (congregation hall). Agricultural Bank. cinemas and shops and stores. restaurants. churches. Shan State Cultural Museum. Taunggyi Degree College. the golf course and residential buildings.There are pines. cherry and eucalyptus trees growing all over the town and the whole area is green and pleasant. The busiest part of Taunggyi is the Myoma Market. a place where people from the environs used to flock only once every five days to buy and sell their regional products. Now it has become a daily market and is constantly crowded with people. It is also the gathering point of different national races residing in Taunggyi.

Air-Balloon Festival

In Taunggyi. the capital city of the Shan State. the people celebrate the Tazaungdine festival with Kahtein (offering of monk robes) as well as the releasing up fire-balloons into the sky. Balloons in the shape of elephant. ox. horse. water-buffalo. bird. pig. fish. owl and parrot are released. The Taunggyi festival is the biggest festival in the country. It is attended not only by Taunggyi Citizens but also by people from southern Shan State and many different races. Taungyi's Kahtein tradition is amazing and worthy of reverence.

Kakku Pagoda festival

Kakku is located in the Southern Shan State. Researchers say Kakku was built about 400 years ago. but there is no written records saying about that. Kakku pagoda festival is usually held during March. the fullmoon day of Tabaung. Kekku has been the center of the worship for the Pa-O people. During the festival. the Pa-O people come to pay homage to the pagoda in their best costumes. Some from near villages come to the festival with decorated bullocks.

Pindaya

Pindaya is a small quiet town perched on the bank of the placid Botoloke Lake. The Pindaya cave. containing thousands of Buddha images. is the main destination in this region. Pindaya is a small quiet town perched on the bank of the placid Botoloke Lake. Pindaya cave is a huge cavern where hundreds and thousands of Buddha images in various size and shape are installed since the 11th century. The winding galleries and nooks and corners are ideal places of insight meditation since the olden days. Huge monastery compounds with numerous pagodas and temples in different stages of dilapidation are much respected by such ethnic groups as the Shans. Danus and Paos living in the environs of Pindaya.

Pindaya Cave

The ancient caves are about one mile southwest of the town. and can be reached by taking a horse-cart. or motoring there by jeep or just walking along on foot. Except for the young and energetic. the best way is to go leisurely be horse-cart to the foot of the hills. reserving your energy for the 200 steps up the covered stairway leading to the cave entrance and for exploring the huge meandering maze made up of numerous caves. The caves are supposed to be 200.00 million years old and since ancient times they have been places of worship and veneration with 8.094 Buddha images made from various materials like teak wood. marble. alabaster. brick. cement and lacquer. and all enshrined in the nooks and corners of the winding caverns. At the entrance to the main cave thee is a pagoda 50 feet in height. This pagoda is called Shwe U-min Hpaya or the Golden Cave pagoda.

The tazaung or prayer hall was built by the famous hermit U Khanti who also built many of the religious edifices on Mandalay Hill. The entire length of the cave is 490 feet. The numerous stalactites and stalagmites in these limestone caves. from fanciful shapes and have given rise to such names as the "Fairy Princess Loom". "Posts for tying horses and elephants" and so on. Some of the smaller caves used meditation chanmers are accessible only if you crawl in on your knees and elbows. Visitors should plan to stay for one or two nights in Pindaya to explore the natural beauties all around; the tranquil lake. the limestone caves. the ancient pagodas and images and the lovely old trees.

Kakku Pagoda festival

Kakku is located in the Southern Shan State. Researchers say Kakku was built about 400 years ago. but there is no written records saying about that. Kakku pagoda festival is usually held during March. the fullmoon day of Tabaung. Kekku has been the center of the worship for the Pa-O people. During the festival. the Pa-O people come to pay homage to the pagoda in their best costumes. Some from near villages come to the festival with decorated bullocks.

Transportation

The most convenient way is to fly from Yangon to Heho. which is the nearest airport to the lake. There are daily flights to Heho which take about one hour. The flight from Mandalay to Heho takes only 30 minutes. Travelling by car along the uphill and winding road over the Shan Plateau. though taking some few hours. is interesting and well-worth taking. There is also a regular train service via Thazi Junction to Heho and Shwenyaung. the nearest station to the Lake.

Kalaw

Kalaw stands high on the western edge of the Shan Plateau. It is 70 km west of Taungyi. about halfway along the Thazi-Taungyi road. This was a popular hill station in the British days and it is still a peaceful and quiet place. At an altitude of 1320 m it is also pleasantly cool and a good place for hiking amid gnarled pines. bamboo groves and rugged mountain scene. A former colonial British hill station. this small-town offers cool temperatures (Kalaw sits at 1.300 meters elevation) and plenty of trekking opportunities. The population is a mix of Shan. Indian Muslims. Bamars and Nepalis (Gurkhas retired from British military service). many of whom are missionary educated. Traveling by car. it's about two hours west of Nyaungshwe on the western edge of the Shan hills.

Nee Paya (Bamboo strip lacquer Buddha Image)

It lies in Pinmagon Monastery. of Pinmagon Village. Kalaw Township. south of Shan State. It was estimated to have been established in First Inn-wa Period over 500 years ago. The donors were hard to ascertain and there were no records but its head was sharp upright. its ears were not touching the shoulders and the nether garment was covered for the whole of its lower parts. So it was believed to be historic. It is eight feet four inches high. It is noted for its longevity. its prevention of fire. and its wishgranting powers. Occasionally radiation seemed to come from the pagoda at the front of image. The image is now lacquered and gilded all the way.

Kakku Pagoda festival

Kakku is located in the Southern Shan State. Researchers say Kakku was built about 400 years ago. but there is no written records saying about that. Kakku pagoda festival is usually held during March. the fullmoon day of Tabaung. Kekku has been the center of the worship for the Pa-O people. During the festival. the Pa-O people come to pay homage to the pagoda in their best costumes. Some from near villages come to the festival with decorated bullocks.

Kalaw Shwe U Min Pagoda

Around Kalaw Places of interest are Thein Taung Pagoda. Aung Chan Tha Pagoda. Su Taung Pyae Pagoda and the King Church. Other things to do Shop around for a trek. walk toward temples & churches. meet tribes at the colorful every-5days market. take the stairs to a temple & a good view of the village. walk up the hill for an even better panorama. a pleasant 1.5 hours trip. taste strawberry lassi. feed birds. breathe fresh air filled with pine trees smell. while on trek. visit coffee. tea or cigar leaves plantations or see elephants at work.

Palaung Village

District of the State are Taunggyi. Loilem. Lashio. Muse. Kyaukme. Kunlong. Laukkai. Kengtung Mongsan. Monhpyak and Tachileik. Shan State is formed with 54 townships and 193 wards and village-tracts. The capital of Shan State is Taunggyi. Wa (Lwela) people are the dwellers in Hopang Township on the east of Thanlwin River. As natural products. manganese is found in Hopong. Hopong is situated in the southern part of Shan State. Located near the capital city of Shan State. Taunggyi. Hopong is about 10 km from Taunggyi and therefore is accessible by car from Taunggyi.

Hopong

District of the State are Taunggyi. Loilem. Lashio. Muse. Kyaukme. Kunlong. Laukkai. Kengtung Mongsan. Monhpyak and Tachileik. Shan State is formed with 54 townships and 193 wards and village-tracts. The capital of Shan State is Taunggyi. Wa (Lwela) people are the dwellers in Hopang Township on the east of Thanlwin River. As natural products. manganese is found in Hopong. Hopong is situated in the southern part of Shan State. Located near the capital city of Shan State. Taunggyi. Hopong is about 10 km from Taunggyi and therefore is accessible by car from Taunggyi.

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