The Land of SHAN
Shan state is one of the front-runner stated of Myanmar. It is a big state with so much to see. After the Bagan this state attracts the most number of tourists. Let me tell you some important tourist destinations in this vivid state.
Taunggyi: This is the capital of Shan State and is situated in the Southern region of Shan State. Since it is situated at 4,712 ft above sea level, Taunggyi has cool and pleasant weather all year round. The market is held on every fifth day of the week and is crowded with all the ethnic minorities in their traditional dresses. Also, Taunggyi Museum is worth a visit and gives and insight in to the history. It is located at a distance of about 18 hours from Yangon. You can also take a train up to Nyaung Shwe and then proceed to Taunggyi by car.
Inle Lake: This is a vast and picturesque lake. Located 900 m above the sea level, it is one of the main tourist attractions of Myanmar. The lake’s total length is 22 km and breadth is 10 km. It has floating islands which have a population of around 150,000. Many of them earn a living through vegetation. Inle Lake’s natural and un-polluted ambiance makes it famous. The highlight is the unique leg-rowing of the ‘Inthas’, the native lake dwellers.
Phaung Daw Oo Pagoda: It is one of the famous principal shrines in Myanmar. This pagoda houses five small Buddha statues. Once a year, in September end, a pagoda festival is held. During this festival the four Buddha images are moved around in the Lake in a colorful barge. This attracts a lot of people to the lake.
Pindaya: Pindaya Caves are pre-historic caves located at about 45km from Kalaw. It is known for its maze of extensive limestone caves. The caves are carved out of high mountains in the outskirts of the state. There is an entrance at 15 m height near the Shwe U Min Pagoda. Inside the caves, there are some 6000 Buddha statues and thousand year old stalagmites.
Kalaw: This is another hill station and is located at 1,400 m above the sea level. It is located at about 70 km west of Taunggyi. The areas architecture is regal and colonial. There are many Tudor style houses and English gardens of the colonial days.
Shan state is one of the pioneer tourist attractions. The people of the state have that warm and welcoming nature. They greet the tourists well and are always there to help.