Trip Start Sep 19, 2010
54Trip End Sep 19, 2011
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We arrived at Bagan airport wondering why we were rushing to leave Bagan. I Knew we were making a mistake in leaving so early and I was regretting it already. There was so much more to see. Never mind these mistakes happen. We climbed into the small turbo prop plane, all nine of us and no sooner had we taken off we were landing. The airline we were using was Mandalay Air and the boarding card will be a welcome addition to my boarding card collection. Yes, I know it is sad. But I have been collecting them for years and I have built up a great collection.
The airport we arrived at was called Heho if I remember rightly and is about 30Km away from the lake. We walked out of the airport into a scramble of taxi touts. Well, there was only nine passengers and about 40 taxi drivers!! Cathy and I teamed up with two Malaysian guys and a French couple and shared the cost of a ride in the back of a pickup to a town called Nyaungshwe at the northern tip of the lake
We had a swim then headed out to explore the town. After a long walk around and a couple of pizzas we headed back to the hotel. Back at the hotel we got talking to the Malaysian guys and they said they had booked a boat to take them on a full day tour of the lake and we could come along and share the cost. We agreed, it would cost Cathy and I £8 between us. Cathy and I were up early the next morning so we could have our breakfast before we set off on our tour of the lake and what a breakfast it was. The breakfast was a three course affair and all included in the £20 a night rate. How I love South East Asia. The four of us walked to the jetty and met our boatman. The boat was a thin wooden boat with four seats set out in single file. We all settled in and set off up the 4Km canal that leads from town to the lake.
Inle lake is in Shan state and sits 875Mtr above sea level and is ringed with mountains. It is about 22 Km long and about 11Km wide. Dotted about the lake are islands of floating vegetation that the locals have ingeniously turned into floating market gardens
We took it easy the next day not really venturing far from the swimming pool at all. We did nip out to book a flight to Rangoon for the next day. Yes we were flying again. It's not that we are getting lazy, it's because the bus to Rangoon takes between 14 and 16 hours. We decided long ago that we will not do any bus trip more than 10 hours long. This time the airline is Bagan air and will stop off in Mandalay before it heads down to Rangoon. That night we decided to splash out and eat at a fancy restaurant. We both had Lamb curry and it was delicious. The next morning we spent around the pool again and at 2 O'clock our taxi arrived to take us to the airport