Best Things to Do in Inle Lake - The Expert's Guides

Inle Lake is an emerging hotspot of tourism and listed among the top of Myanmar’s tourist attractions. Here are the best things to do in Inle Lake that listed by holidaymakers and travel experts.

Besides popular cities, Inle Lake, one of the most scenic lakes in the world, in recent years, has become an emerging hotspot of tourism and listed among the top of Myanmar’s tourist attractions. More than just a tranquil lake dotted with stilt houses, marshes, hills and glistening temples from the distance, this iconic destination gives you various chances to have an insightful local exposure as well as enjoy incredible experiences that are unrivalled by any other sites’ offerings.

Let's find out the best things to do in Inle Lake with Myanmar Group Tours which are listed by many holidaymakers and travel experts.

1.Get a Boat Tour around the Lake of Inle

As stilt houses are one of the most signature feature in Inle Lake, take time to experience them and get a better understanding into local life. Get a trip on the colorful long - tail boat around the lake, en route stopping by these small houses, passing through local handicraft workshops and a plethora of other tourist attractions like Phaung Daw Oo Pagoda or Nga Hpe Chaung Monastery.

As you set sailing, the aqua life of indigenous inhabitants are captured into your lense, with happy children waving at tourists, little floating villages standing out in the sunlight. You may opt for either a motorized canoe or a traditional boat under the assistance of any hotel and guesthouse in Nyaung Shwe. Toast the sunset as it illuminates the lake and enjoy the tranquil vibe here.

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The tranquil scenery of Inle Lake

2. Ride a Hot - Air Balloon over Inle Lake

Hot - air balloon is not only iconic feature of Bagan but also a highlight activity in Inle Lake, a trip to marvel at the panoramic surrounding. As the balloon gets higher and higher into the air, the whole view from above is so stunning that we can’t simply express in words: the roofs of stilt houses, the vash greenery around, the colorful dots of local people. It is therefore highly recommended that you arrange time for a ride over the horizon, for a memorable sunrise catch in the golden land.

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Wanna experience the balloon landing on the water? Check out our Inle Lake Balloon Tour

3. Observe the Unique Fishing Skills - One Leg Rowing

Your trip to Inle Lake is not complete should there be no observation of local fishing skills. The ingenuity and skillfulness of those local fishermen in applying traditional methods are nothing but awesome to engage our attentions. Eventually, one leg is wrapped around an oar to maneuver the boats around, while a conical bamboo net is used for fish catching.

This technique requires fishermen to stand up for the whole process to catch sight of the fish and have enough power to pull the net off. It may comes as difficult to us, but to those local people, it is a well-taught tradition which has been passed down through generations. It is such a invigorating experience to witness a traditionally treasured skills in this tourism - penetrated country. 

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A one leg rowing fisherman on Lake Inle

4. Visit the Traditional Markets and Workshops 

Don’t miss out on traditional markets and workshops as you visit Inle Lake. Inle Lake’s market takes place daily and keeps changing every five days to one out out 5 villages. This is where local people come to sell and buy various local produce such as fresh vegetables, fruits, handicrafts and so on. You will have a chance to not only experience  the bustling local trading but encounter many people from different ethnic groups in and around Inle Lake.

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Another best thing to do in Inle Lake is visiting the traditional workshops. Lake Inle is home to a number of unique and fascinating handicrafts such as cheroot - Burmese cigar rolling, lotus silk weaving, blacksmith or silversmith, which offer you great insight into one of the locals’ main livelihood. Kick off on an Inle Lake day tour to unveil the special features of this outstanding body of water.

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Lotus fiber is taken from the lotus's stem

5. Contemplate the Beauty of Phaung Daw Oo Pagoda

Phaung Daw Oo Pagoda, the main focus of pagoda festival every year is also the most sacred site in Inle Lake. It is home to five Buddha statues covered in gold leaf. Every day, there is a ritual allowed to be performed only by men. These male devotees will apply gold leaf to the statues in paying respect the Buddha religion. 

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6. Cycling in the Nearby Villages

Although the weather in Myanmar is intensively hot to wander under boiling sunlights, tourists still have no hesitation to enjoy a biking tour around the lake and small rural neary villages. Recharge you energy and ready to engage in one of the most discovery types of activities.

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You may ride the the east of Nyaung shwe to Htat Eian Temple Cave to explore inside passages of temple and Buddha sites, or visit Maing Thauk village, a random art gallery, and Red Mountain Estate Winery for a breath - taking sunset. 

7. Explore Indein - the Ancient Temple Complex

Indein village, sitting to the west of the lake, is home to a plethora of pagodas and stupas in both ancient and modern forms for tourists to marvel at. There is one Buddha statue atop with cluster of other ancient stupas lying below. As you come to Indein village, take time to enjoy quiet and spiritual atmosphere. 

Apart from pagodas, the local market of Pa - Oh people is also a highlight, taking place 5 days a week in rotating order of five villages around the lake.

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8. Get Lost in the 2,000 Stupas of Kakku

Should you visit Inle Lake, don’t miss out on Kakku, a Shan State’s complex of up to 2,478 stupas established for more than 2,000 years to become one of the most majestic ancient monument site in Asia.

Not only does it offer tourist a great insight into traditional art and architecture but also provide you local understanding into a famous Buddhist tribe of Pa-Oh inhabitants, who have been living in peace and dedicating their life to religious devotion.

Around the main 40-metre high stupa, the other spires are in identical forms, although standing out in unique style. In short, allow yourself to indulge in the religious world in Kakku, a timeless testimony of mankind heritage.

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9. Trekking to Kalaw

The trekking route to Kalaw is one of the most favorite activity in the travel checklist. To the west of Shan State, Kalaw used to be a hill station. Nowadays, it has become a tourist attraction especially for backpackers, due to the laid-back vibe in sharp contrast with hustling city atmosphere.

Spend a few days for this trekking tour to explore tranquil and picturesque scenery as well as local life here, with central market selling local produce of nearby-hills, Aung Chang Tha stupa glimmering in silver and gold mosaics. 

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Inle Lake is a wonderful destination to visit where you can find beautiful nature and unique Burmese culture. This is a place that you should not miss when setting foot in Myanmar. For further Myanmar travel guide, please see:

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