Top things to do in and around Inle Lake
Inle Lake is one of the affordable destinations in the world. Known as the most beautiful lake in Myanmar, Inle Lake is located 900 meters above sea level and surrounded by high hills and dotted with floating gardens and villages. Find below listed things to do suggestion for visitors.
Exploring the Five Day Market
The most popular five day markets takes place at the villages around Inle Lake. You will see a lot of Local Shan and Intha people as well as various Pa-O villagers from the surrounding hills converge to sell their products. It is a true local market as you can see different local tribes buying all sorts of seeds and nuts, fresh fish from the lake or tropical fruits like durian, mango, pineapple, dragon fruit.
Fullday Phaung Daw Oo Pagada Visit with Inpawkhone
Board a private boat on Inle Lake. As you cross the lake, you will discover the stilted houses and observe the leg-rowing fishermen. Marvel at the floating gardens and visit PhaungDawOo Pagoda, the lake’s main sanctuary, which contains five sacred Buddha images covered in gold leaf. Continue to Nga Hpe Chaung Monastery, which houses dozens of Shan Buddha Images. Then, explore the local crafts of Inle Lake with a stop at the weaving village of Inpawkhone and visit a cheroot factory to see Burmese cigars are rolled by hand.
Visiting the Red mountain Vineyard
You can go by bike or by car to reach there. Red Mountain Estate is about a half an hour bike ride from the center of Nyaung Shwe. Red Mountain Vineyard located on the side of Inle Lake, in the southern Shan State, the Red Mountain Estate produces wines with locally grown grapes. When you arrive there you can taste the Local Wine and enjoy the beautiful views from the garden.
Nyaung Shwe on Trishaw
Start with a visit to the Nyaung Shwe morning market where locals gather every morning to buy and sell fresh produce from the lake and its surroundings. Continue by local trishaw down to the bustling canal which is a hive of activity in the morning as boats from the lake come in to unload tomatoes and other vegetables for distribution to the markets around the country. Watch as baskets laden with produce are transferred from boats to trucks and bikes. Hop back on the trishaw and wind through quiet streets. Make a stop at the ‘tomato house’, a warehouse-like structure where tomatoes are sorted and priced for sale. Then continue past some of the many monasteries and nunneries in the town, stopping for photos as you go.
Kakku Day Trip
You will discover breathtaking views of more than 5200 centuries old stupas and several Buddha images. As you explore the temples, notice the intricate carvings and details on the structures. Your knowledgeable Pa-Oh guide will share with you the customs of the people in this area.
Visit Colonial town of Kalaw
Kalaw is the former British hill station on the western edge of Shan plateau. It is a small, picturesque town surrounded by pine forests in tranquil atmosphere and reminiscent of colonial time. Kalaw is also a good starting point for trekking and hiking possibilities to the neighboring hill tribe villages. The roads leading to Kalaw and Pindaya offer breathtaking sights of the landscape.
Meet the Elephants at Green Hill Valley Camp
Transfer from Kalaw to Green Hill Valley Elephant Camp in Magwe village (the drive takes around 45 minutes). A guide from the camp will greet you and transfer you to the main camp. Enjoy a welcome drink while receiving a briefing on the day’s activities, the background of the camp and the history of elephants in Myanmar. Following this, embark on a short walk to the river, passing through a reforestation project set up by the camp and villagers. Be greeted by the elephants – the guide will explain their name, age, and how they ended up retiring at the camp. Trays of bananas and sugar cane will be brought out and some time will be enjoyed feeding the elephants. Afterwards, get dressed in traditional Shan garments to prepare for the elephants bathing. Walk to a natural pool, located between two small falls in the stream, where you’ll join the elephants for a bath.
Peaceful little town, Pindaya is famous for its natural caves carved out of a limestone ridge which house over 8,000 Buddha images of various sizes made of different materials and for small workshops of hand-made paper-umbrellas. Trekking to local hill tribes villages are also highlight of this area.