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What an adventure …Myanmar (Burma)

I have recently returned from a truly memorable and extraordinary trip to Myanmar ….what an amazing country and what lovely people ….it was a privilege to visit and they really need visitors so I recommend you check out Khiri travel, based in Yangon who organised our trip .  We asked to go off the tourist trail at times so we could experience the real Myanmar and how time stands still in the rural villages , mountains and lakes.

 

Here are a few images to inspire you ……

YANGON

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Gorgeous Colonial Hotel in midst of an Urban Jungle ..highly recommend The Savoy

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City Walking Tour …

 

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Shwedagon Pagoda …a must at sunset

 

Short flight up to HSIPAW in The Shan State..

 

Trek to a mountain village on our first full day …

 

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Rooftop view of Pankam Village

 

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Our lovely Khiri guide – Win – so knowledgable and spoke very good English too

 

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Our reward – a delicious home-cooked lunch and green tea with a village family

 

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Banyan Tree and evocative tiered fields on our route….

 

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Leaving Hsipaw (pronunced Sepaw) by train and heading to The Gokteik Viaduct which is SO scary to go over .  A gravity-defying construction that the travel writer Paul Theroux aptly described as “a monster of silver geometry in all the ragged rock and jungle”.  We even had a small mouse in our carriage …eeeks !!

 

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And on to BAGAN…

 

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During the kingdom’s height between the 11th and 13th centuries, over 10,000 Buddhist temples, pagodas and monasteries were constructed in the Bagan plains alone, of which the remains of over 2,200 temples and pagodas still survive to the present day.

 

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Visiting a food market on day 2 ..and on to a local village to see how they make Tamarind sweets, wooden clogs , peanut oil and soya paste.

 

JOURNEY OF THE TAMARIND SWEET

 

From the tree….paste taken from inside the pods and mixed with sugar

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Rolled into rectangles and cut into small discs which are then dried in a wood fired oven

 

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Village women packing the flat sweets into twisted paper for packaging below

 

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On to a boat ride on The Great Irrawaddy for sunset ..

 

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Day Three – dawn from the roof of our hotel , the hot air balloons take off  – AMAZING

 

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Road trip to LOIKAW and the Kayan Women with brass neck jewellery or lacquer kneelets – the last generation before these old traditions die out.

 

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Village Life …so simple

 

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Having a go at backstrap weaving …really hard !

 

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My favourite photograph of the whole trip …4 generations of women ..Kayan grandmother, her daughter at the top of the stairs, her granddaughter sitting on the steps and her great-granddaughter sitting next to her.  One of three children and she is 24 and SO beautiful.

 

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Simple lunch after our walk up the hills above the village …rice with various vegetable curries all wrapped in banana leaves.  Delicious and what a view.

 

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Another village the next day with more Kayan women …this time with lacquer kneelets making us good luck bracelets.  Another playing traditional music.

 

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And on to INLE  LAKE …it just get’s better and better

 

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View from the verandah of my room on stilts in the lake…just the sounds of birds and local fishermen

 

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Villages on the lake on our way to a boatyard and silk factory

 

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No wonder these fabrics cost so much ..so labour intensive ..a real insight to quality and patience.

 

Another treat …a cooking course with this incredibly talented cook Tin Tin whose family have several restaurants in nearby villages …the food was so delicious, especially the vegetable tempura.

 

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And now off to some much needed R and R at Ngapali beach for a few days before our 3 flights and 27 hour journey HOME !!!!  It’s a long way to go but so worth it.

 

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BACK TO REALITY NOW

A N D

REALLY LOOKING FORWARD TO OUR NEW SEASON

RE-OPENING FRIDAY 5th APRIL

WITH A FABULOUS COLLECTION OF SPRING/SUMMER OUTFITS

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