Inle Lake is over 14 miles long, framed by the cool green hills of Shan State and set apart from the rest of Burma. The lake itself sits at a climatically pleasant 1,300 meters above sea level and is famous for its strange unique leg rowers, floating markets and prolific birdlife. In this unique wetland environment, whole villages and temples sit on floating islands and the best way to explore this distinctive environment is by traditional longtail boat, visiting craft workshops (age old methods of cheroot making, silk weaving and silversmiths being the principal industries), stilted villages, a 5-day rotating market, temple boats & even floating vegetable patches. Colourful hill tribes also inhabit surrounding fertile valleys and forested mountaintops, and their own hand-woven silks are a specialty of the region.
Inle Lake is, without doubt, the must-see destination for all first time visitors to Burma. For those wanting to unwind, there are a number of resorts out on the lakeside. However, those who do not want to be ‘resort-bound’ in the evenings, then you stay in Nyuang Shwe – a busy and entertaining market town only a short distance from the lake itself.
Do be aware that during peak season it can get busy and planning your day to try avoid the larger tour groups is at the forefront of our mind when creating your itinerary. Having said that, no doubt we will look to include a visit to the vineyard in the hills overlooking the lake for a late afternoon spent wine-tasting whilst the sun sets over the water – one of life’s moments.