Inle Lake boat tour
The number one thing to do at Inle Lake is a boat tour. Get out in the early morning, it is the very best to experience the sunrise on the lake if you can. Your boat driver will know where to go but he will give you some options that you can visit, or not.
Visit the fishermen during sunrise or sunset. It is impressive to see how they easily balance on the tip of the boat trying to get fish into their netted cages.
The floating garden is one unique piece of work. The pieces of ground are being held together with bamboo, floating on the lake. The area is huge and produces many kinds of vegetables year-round.
The long-necked women are tribes that seem to fade out more and more over the next years, which makes it even more special to visit them.
The ladies are working on their garments. This is pure for tourism purposes to show-off their ‘giraffe necks’. Worth a visit!
There are many small workshops, factories, and shops on the lake, some more interesting than the other. You can visit shops like cigar or gold maker and factories where they create beautiful clothing.
Next up, visit Maing Thauk Village which is located on the east side of the lake. This village is almost completely built on the water and it is impressive to see how these people live their lives.
The Nga Phe Kyaung Monastery is one of those places to walk around instead of in. The surroundings and quiet area give you a moment to relax and think about the day.
Wake up with a balloon flight over the lake
One of the newer things to do in Inle Lake is a balloon flight. Wake up with your head in the clouds and enjoy an unforgettable moment. The guys of Balloons over Bagan who created this flight are also one of the main companies to fly over Bagan.
Read: Bagan Guide
Explore the area by bike or bike tour
Rent a bike and explore the area around Inle Lake and wander around in the town called Nyaung-Shwe.
You can also do a bike tour where you will explore the countryside, rice fields, bamboo forest, visit ethnic villages and enjoy some pleasant sceneries.
Visit the Shwe Inn Dein Pagodas
The pagodas are located in Indein, west of Inle Lake which is a little out of the usual tourist area. Most of the pagodas are old and not been touched for renovation, which gives it an extra impressive look.
Where to stay at Inle Lake
When you are planning a visit to Inle Lake, there are two areas where you can stay. Most of the travelers stay in Nyuang-Shwe town, this is about 5 km from Inle Lake.
Staying on Inle Lake is your second option, this is more expensive than staying in town.
Staying on Inle Lake
Staying in Nyuang-Shwe
Restaurants at Inle Lake
The region where Inle is located is very famous for its ‘Shan’ food. We highly recommend you to eat at one of these restaurants.
The must-go place is Paw Paw Restaurant. The lady serves incredible food and uses her income to support local kids to go to school. She has about 4 teenagers from the outside villages who live with her to be able to go to school. She is such a lovely lady. (Please say Hi from us ;) )
Sin Yaw Restaurant is on the other side of the town and the most popular in town. Great flavors and friendly staff.
How to get to Inle Lake
To get to Inle Lake you will have a couple of options, by bus, plane or taxi.
From Bagan to Inle you can take the JJExpress which is a very comfortable ride and takes about 8-hours driving through an incredible landscape. The bus drops you off in the center of Nyuang-Shwe town next to the restaurant ‘The Garden’.
Heho airport is about 45-minutes from Nyuang-Shwe and 1-hour from Inle Lake. Flights will go to most of the popular destinations.
Weather in Inle Lake
It’s best to visit Inle Lake from November to February. Temperatures in the daytime are around 30°C where it can get quite cool in the night because Inle is over 1300 meters above sea level.
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I noticed in the photos where you visited the pagodas your shoulders aren’t covered, isn’t that considered disrespectful?
Yes, you are right about that – sorry! We used a photo from a friend but will try to friend a replacement.