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Asia » Burma » Eastern Burma » Kalaw December 2nd 2015

Next stop on our Burmese adventure was Shan State, starting in the lovely little town of Kalaw. Trekking HQ for Myanmar, Kalaw was a hill station founded by the Brits to escape the heat of the plains and the jungle. It's the place to go for nice day treks and longer trips, with the big draw being the three day trek to Inle Lake, which is what we were there for. We intended to spend two nights in Kalaw, to give us one day to chill out before starting trekking. After getting everything ready to go, however, the night before starting trekking we happened upon the best bar we've been to in Burma. A tiny little place called Hi Bar, with just 12 seats around a little oval bar, it serves almost nothing but rum sours, ... read more
Trekking from Kalaw to Inle Lake
Sun-dried chillies
Trekkers

Asia » Burma » Eastern Burma May 13th 2015

Asia » Burma » Eastern Burma » Tachileik May 8th 2015

So, we arrived at the border with no idea what to expect or what to do. Everyone else seemed to know entirely what was going on, except the small queue of farangs at the Customs hut. We didn't have the departure card from our landing card so we had to pay the man 100 baht for him to photocopy a new one (I'm sure he could have charged us more, but I'm also sure he didn't need to charge us at all). Once that was sorted we were allowed to cross the bridge. Interesting thing, so in Thailand you drive on the left but in Myanmar you drive on the right. Also, when leaving Thailand you walk on the left hand side, but the Myanmar 'IN' is on the right. This means that everyone has to ... read more
Myanmar
OUT

Asia » Burma » Eastern Burma » Pindaya April 3rd 2015

It was a beautiful few days without a ton of action, so I'm hoping this blog is long on photos and short on words... We left Hsipaw with the hopes of finding an overnight trek out of Pindaya, which is in eastern Myanmar. It was a fantastic decision. The weather is slightly cooler as it is at a higher elevation meaning we weren't sweating immediately upon stepping outdoors. There seems be less slash and burn agriculture in the area, making the vistas much clearer. And there are very few operations for hiking, so there are fewer tourists roaming the countryside making it more quaint. As we hiked the villagers were happily amused by our pressence in their neck of the woods, asking our guides where we were going, waving as we passed, and laughing as we ... read more
Full Moon Paya
Soooo many Buddhas
On the road from Mandalay to Inle

Asia » Burma » Eastern Burma » Kalaw March 6th 2015

Our 3 day trek through the mountains of Myanma: We did not know this at the time, but this was to become one of the main highlights of our trip to Myanmar. We made a quick stop in Kalaw which was pretty uneventful but the purpose of which was to book and begin a 3 day 2 night trek from Kalaw to Inle Lake. We happily took the day bus option to get here as opposed to any night bus, although arriving in the daytime still made no difference. Following an 8 hour ride we were both disoriented, tired and restless. In minutes however we settled on Honey Pine Inn and were pretty happy with the hotel. Using P’s bartering skills we managed to get a $35 room to $20, and it was the best room ... read more
Rice paddies during dry season
Lady working in the field
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Asia » Burma » Eastern Burma » Kalaw November 28th 2014

Kalaw. 2h du matin. A la porte d’une agence de treks guidés vers le lac Inlé. Nous frappons à la porte depuis une demi-heure mais personne n’ouvre… Un passant nous aide à réveiller le propriétaire qui nous laisse nous reposer dans sa chambre. 4 heures plus tard, nous organisons les sacs et démarrons une marche de trois jours à travers les montagnes birmanes. Bernard le belge, Ana l’espagnole, William le québécois, et nous-mêmes suivons Momo, notre guide de 28 ans. Lui, il porte des tongs, un vieux sac East pack, raconte des blagues toutes les 2 minutes et n’a jamais entendu parler du Mc Do (« c’est une chanteuse non ? »). Il nous apprend la négo, en birman, que nous pratiquons dès que l’occasion se présente ; les vendeurs et les rangers adorent ! La ... read more
Momo

Asia » Burma » Eastern Burma » Taunggyi January 22nd 2014

What a wonderful day . It was a chilly morning I'd guess @12 C . Breakfast on the terrace at the hotel had everyone reaching for the thermos of coffee . The steam was rising from our eggs , our mouths and cups as well . I put on socks! and the black pants I wore leaving Canada! What a change!!! We had booked our boat , a 15Meter long speed(?) boat , the night before for 8:30 am to 6 pm. for $40 . A bit high I think but the convenience of doing it at the hotel is worth something. Heading out on the 4 km channel to the lake was chilly indeed . My jacket and socks over my sweater and a silk scarf was a welcome addition . The journey was interesting ... read more

Asia » Burma » Eastern Burma November 23rd 2013

I am assured by the girl at the front desk that we will get a 4.00am wake-up call to enable us to catch our 5.30am boat to Mandalay. Luckily for me the prayers are still coming from the temple and wake me at around 2.00am. And even with my toilet paper ear plugs, I can't get back to sleep. It's a stroke of luck that I am still awake at 4.00am as the wake-up call is non existent. The security guard is found asleep on the floor in reception, however I give him a serious wake-up call before getting in the taxi for the boat. A river boat, on the Irrawaddy River to Mandalay is a wonderful experience. It's an 11 hour trip up one of Asia's great rivers, a wide muddy river from the annals ... read more
tribesperson
Walking up Mandalay Hill
Longest Teak Bridge

Asia » Burma » Eastern Burma » Tachileik November 13th 2013

Caught a public bus from Chiang Rai bus station- so small no room to squeeze my legs in so had to sit sideways on the seat. Fare was a mere 39 baht for the hour and a half journey to Mai Sai. On arrival at the bus station there we all had to get a songthaew to the border costing another 15baht. 19 people plus 3 sacks of produce were crammed into that van- good job it was nonly a few kms and I hung onto the back outside, Filled in a departure card at immigration and then stood in an almost non-moving queue as both the people in front of me had overstayed their Thai visa so had to fill in paperwork and pay fines. When it was my turn I was stamped out with ... read more
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burma2
chinese temple

Asia » Burma » Eastern Burma » Pindaya October 14th 2013

A shiver up my spine While waiting at Yangon airport for our flight to Heho I heard Ohnmar say "oh, there is Daw Suu Kyi", I quickly looked around and sure enough there was Daw Aung San Suu Kyi being to led to an airport bus to take her to board a flight to the political capital. I caught a quick glimpse of her on the bus and felt a shiver up my spine. Next, we saw all the airport staff standing on the tarmac waving off the plane she was travelling on. It was a fleeting glimpse of this amazing woman, which created a snapshot that will stay in my mind a long time. Bombing in Yangon On the flight to Heho, we read about a series of bombing attempts in Yangon which injured some ... read more
Yangon News
Pindaya Cave
Pindaya Cave




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