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Inle Lake Short Break

2 days with Intrepid Travel   Rating: Budget

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Day 1: Inle Lake
Welcome to Inle Lake, whose calm waters are the life-blood for many ethnic minority communities. They live in stilt houses along the lake's shallow fringes and surrounding areas.

You’ll begin this Short Break in the main township of Nyaungshwe, which lies a few kilometres north of Inle Lake. You’ll meet your guide and fellow travellers (if any) at 8:30 am at Paradise Hotel. From here you’ll begin your trek into the surrounding villages. You’ll hike for around 1 hour up a small hillock to Htat Eain village, which houses a well-known cave temple of the same name. This extensive limestone cave features beautiful stupas and Buddha statues, some sitting in deep contemplation in its pitch black depths, others watching over the countryside from a carved out ledge. Leaving the still and quiet of the cave, trek another 45 minutes to a village, where you’ll meet some of the locals. Passing patches of farmland and with the mountains in the background, walk through the picturesque countryside to a second village, where you’ll stop for lunch and enjoy some time with the local community.

All fuelled up, continue your walk for around another 1.5 hours before transferring to a light truck to rest your legs with a transfer back to the hotel. Arriving in the mid-afternoon, the rest of your day is free. There are numerous restaurants to sample and a traditional puppet show held in town every evening. (Lunch)
Day 2: Inle Lake
Rise early again this morning (you may wish to rise even earlier yourself to catch a stunning Inle Lake sunrise), meeting at the hotel at 8:30 am and heading down to a nearby jetty. Here you’ll board a boat and sail onto the lake, seeing local life, exploring the floating gardens, and catching a glimpse of the local Intha fishermen who are famous for their unique 'leg-rowing' technique. The Intha leg-rowers navigate their long, narrow craft by standing on the stern with one leg and wrapping the other around the oar. This unique style evolved because the reeds that cover the lake and the floating plants make it difficult to see above them while sitting.

You’ll also visit some nearby floating villages, looking out for a wide array of birdlife – including egrets, cranes, ducks, storks and various birds of prey – along the way. Stop by the Nga Phe Chaung Monastery, a 19th-century wooden silt place of worship with an impressive collection Buddha images. Have lunch at Inthar Heritage House, which features a tasting menu built on the foundations of their grandmother’s traditional Inthar recipes. Here you’ll also visit the Inthar Heritage Museum, see how they’re keeping another part of Myanmar’s heritage alive with a reintroduction program for the once Royal Burmese cat, and also learn about the vocation training school run to help disadvantaged youths. Hop back on a boat and travel up a long narrow canal to the Indein ruins complex.

Disembark and discover a pagoda and stupas built in the 8th century. Explore the atmospheric ruins; crumbling stupas being reclaimed by greenery, and up a hill over 1,000 zedi from the 17th and 18th centuries. Enjoy views across the valley and lake from the pagoda, and marvel at the surroundings.

Take the boat back to Nyuangshwe (approximately 1 hour 15 minutes), arriving around 5pm, when this Inle Lake trip comes to an end. (Breakfast, Lunch)
All This Included
This Short Break takes you to the site of some of the most iconic images of Myanmar – Intha leg rowers manoeuvring their conical nets as the Inle Lake waters reflect another beautiful sunset. It also gets you exploring the dry land – home to many different ethnic tribes including the Shan, Pa-O, Taung Yo – trekking between small communities, shining a light on meditative Buddhas deep in a limestone cavern, and climbing up to ancient, atmospheric ruins of crumbling stupas and zedi. Boat between floating villages and monasteries, and experience the country’s heritage – in a small museums or with a lunch of traditional recipes. This short trip is the perfect encapsulation of what makes Inle Lake so special.

  • 1 breakfast, 2 lunches
  • Boat, Private Vehicle
  • Take a full day to trek around the villages around Inle Lake, meeting some of the locals who make up the many groups that contribute to the ethnic diversity of this colourful country.
  • Soak up the tranquillity of Inle Lake while cruising the water, visiting floating gardens and villages.
  • Taste the culture of the region with lunch at Inthar Heritage House, whose tasting menu is built on the foundations of grandmother’s traditional Inthar recipes.
  • See how Inthar Heritage House keeps another part of Myanmar’s heritage alive with a Burmese cat reintroduction program, and also learn about the vocation training school run to help disadvantaged youths.
  • Navigate a long narrow canal to the Indein ruins complex, then climb the stairs up to this historic temple, with over 1,000 stupas overlooking Inle Lake.
Hotel (1 night)
  • Group size: Min 1, Max 6
  • Ages: Min 5
  • This trip operates on a join-in basis with our experienced partner Urban Adventures. On each day you will join in with other travellers, who have potentially booked on a different trip.
  • With the flexibility of daily departures, there is a chance you may end up travelling solo on this trip. You will always have a local guide and all included activities will remain the same.
  • Local guides are likely to differ for each day tour, however they will always be knowledgeable local experts.
  • Activities on this Short Break include hiking in the hills surrounding Inle Lake. Please make sure you pack walking shoes and clothes appropriate for these activities and local weather conditions.
  • Temperatures can be extreme in Myanmar. During the day the weather can be very hot so please bring appropriate clothing, use sun protection and drink plenty of water. In the evenings temperatures really drop (especially in the mountains), so bring base layers and warm clothing.
  • Please ask your Vacations To Go travel counselor for more information.
Terms and Conditions
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* The prices shown are U.S. dollars per person, based on double occupancy, and subject to availability. Prices quoted for land/cruise arrangements are subject to increase without notice. Once we have received your deposit, land/cruise prices are guaranteed. Air prices quoted via phone or email are subject to increase and are guaranteed only from the time that full payment is received. Also, air prices or air promotions mentioned on this site or on the phone do not include baggage fees imposed by airlines.