Inle Lake is located in the centre of the greatest depression in Myanmar's Nyaungshwe Valley, situated between two mountain ranges. With a length of 22km, a width of 11km, and an elevation of 875 metres, Inle Lake is considered as the second-largest natural lake in the country. It is interesting to note that the lake does not have an actual shoreline, but its shores and islands are home to 17 villages on stilts.
Most of the attractions found in Inle Lake are of the religious variety. Because the Inthas (the inhabitants of the lake) are Buddhists, this is something to be expected. One of the religious attractions in the area is the Phaungdawoo Pagoda. It is said to be the most sacred pagoda in the entire southern Shan State, and one of the most famous shrines in the country. Two more pagodas found in Inle Lake are Shwe Indein Pagoda and Alodaw Pauk Pagoda.
After visiting the beautiful but parched plains of Bagan, it was both physically and spiritually to motor around the cool and beautiful Lake Inle for 2 days We stayed in the glorious Villa Inle Resort and Spa.
It is situated on the banks of the lake. You arrive by boat which feels very glamorous.
The afternoon helper wore a pajamas style outfit.
The hotel is a cluster of 17 luxurious teak villas. They have plans to build another 15 villas next year as they cannot meet the demand.
The teak parquet was as beautiful as any that I have seen in Paris.
The lake is very large and I was consumed with a sense of ease and bliss as we put-put-putted along in our long boat. The locals went about their daily lives only to look up with a smile or a wave as we went by.
We were at the lake the end of April which is the end of the dry season, so the water table was very low and the hyacinths were at their worse. Both can stop a boat in its tracks so you can jump over board and lend a hand
So you get a little muddy and wet, but the locals love it.
or wait for the villagers to come lend a hand. FYI, these people are dirt poor so do give them a few dollars for their generous and free assistance.
I just love these stupas in their original state.
I just love the atmospheric ruins of the unrestored sections like these.
Here we can see where the stupa tops have been repaired. Too bad they do not use red bricks for the restoration.
Looking down on Buddha. The ceiling has collapsed but Buddha was undamaged as he is made of copper.
I spy with my iPad. "I say, look what's over here old chap".
Here we see a little stucco Hindu influence.
Man this is so RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARC looking.
I am all for restoring but rebuilding is just a no, no!
The restored central core lacks the atmosphere of the older section.
SAMKAR AKA A TOWN NOT ANYMORE is another wonderful archeological site.
|NASTY REBUILT STUPA|
|new Buddhas in new pagoda.|
|GIVE ME AN OLD TARNISHED BUDDHA ANY DAY.|
|EVEN BUDDHA IS BIGGER THAN THE ELEPHANT WHICH IS THE LARGEST ANIMAL IN THE WORLD|
|This site may be a national treasure but people need to feed themselves.|
|OUR GRACIOUS GUIDES|
The Frangipani Stupa.
|protecting Buddha from thieves|
Well, that got me all excited and I morphed into Indiana Jones and man was it worth it!!
The outboard motor engine.
|QUO VADIS DOMINUS?|
but it is the public baths for all concerned. After a long hard day in the fields everyone gathers lake side to quench their thirst, wash their bodies, teeth, cloths. I hope that no international mine starts polluting these people water.
I love that rich red soil with the green bamboo forest in the background.
|Good dental hygiene|
And back at the hotel in time for a glorious sunset.
Caveat........see it before it gets over built!!!
|MOUNTAIN SIDE BEING CLEARED FOR A NEW MEGA RESORT HOTEL|
Early morning sunrise and departure from hotel.
|WE DEPART BUT LIFE GOES ON FOR THE FISHER MAN|
|BAGS ARE PACKED AND WE ARE READY TO GO.|
|I HOPE SO!|