5-Day The Shan Experience

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Tour type

Tour Level: Relaxed / Easy

Tour Comfort: Standard

Tour Period: 5 Days

English    Heho, Pindaya, Kalaw, Inle Lake

tour highlights

  • Hiking up the hills and explore the villages around Pindaya and Kalaw
  • Hiking from Kalaw to Myin Ma Hti cave
  • Experience the authentic train ride from Kalaw to Shwe Nyaung
  • Take an authentic boat tour in Inle Lake and Indaing
  • Hiking to eastern shore and enjoy wine tasting while watching the breath-taking sunset
  • Picnic dinner on the Shan hills

tour details

Experience the Shan train ride, hiking in the villages and picnic dinner on the hill overlooking stunning view of the Inle Lake. The country side in the Shan State offers the most stunning pictures. In every season, the colours of the fields are different and the farmers doing their work offer great photo opportunities. Meeting the local tribal people and observing their typical ways of life are simply amazing.

Why choose this tour?

  • Experience of exciting hiking adventure on the colourful Shan plateau around Pindaya, Kalaw and Inle Lake
  • Observing the abundant cultures, traditions and tribal ways of life throughout your journey
  • A beautiful private boat trip in and around Inle Lake and Indaing
Arrival at Heho Airport and transfer from Heho airport to Pindaya in your private vehicle (approximately 1 hour), an attractive drive up into the hills and across the Shan Plateau, through fields of mountain rice. Stop on the way at Tha Yet Kone village before arriving at Pindaya. Walk through the little village and visit Bamboo hat making home industry. Then continue to hike 30 minutes uphill to Kyae Dwe Kone. Along the track, you will see a panoramic view over the Pindaya town from distance. Arrive Kyae Dwe Kone, a Danu village passing the fields where they cultivate tobacco, tea and potato. This village is also known for making dry potato chips. A short stop at one of the house to obverse how they make dry potato chips. Continue downhill for another 30 mins to arrive at Pindaya Cave. Visit magnificent Pindaya Caves, set in a limestone ridge overlooking a picturesque lake, where thousands of different types of Buddha images are on display in the various cave chambers. Lunch at Green Tea Restaurant.
Then, visit one of the tea plantation gardens to observe how they produce the famous Shan green tea. Enjoy green tea with snack and chat with the villagers. Afterwards, continue to local workshop where Shan paper and parasols are made. Visit the Plan Bee Beekeeping Center and discover the amazing world of beekeeping and the story for Shan honey. Each year, Shan produces around 1500 tonnes of niger honey every year and around 100 tonnes of mustard honey. Experience the feel and tastes of Myanmar honey. (you can participate in fun workshops and activities for adults and children with advance booking). Late afternoon, drive to Kalaw.
Accommodation at Kalaw Heritage Hotel (Deluxe with Mountain View) or similar, Kalaw.
Morning around 07:30Hrs start walking from Kalaw about 3'bd hours to Myinmahti village, mostly inhabited by the ethnic Danu minority. The route takes you first through the pine forest, which opens out after to 1 hour to potato farms, mountain rice paddies and huge vegetable plantations. In this traditional rural environment farmers still work with oxen and buffalo rather than machines. Enjoy the natural beauty of the area. Continue to the Myinmahti limestone cave (312 metres deep from entrance to exit). This natural cave has existed for thousands of years, and there are many small caves on either side of the entrance and exit. The main cavern contains numerous pagodas and statues, brought here over the last 2300 years since the reign of King Thiri Dhamar Asawka. Their artistic details are intricate and unique. According to the archaeological research, some of the statues were built earlier than 17 AD or 18 AD. At the entrance to the cave, there are many stalactites where cool water is dripping steadily. Return by car to Kalaw for lunch. Lunch at Seven Sister Restaurant.
Then take the train 13:30 from Kalaw to Shwe Nyaung. Enjoy beautiful scenery along the train ride. Around 17:00 arrive Shwe Nyaung Railway Station, transfer by private vehicle to Nyaung Shwe and proceed to your hotel by boat.
Accommodation at Novotel Inle Lake (Junior Suite) or similar, Inle Lake.
This morning, travel by long-tailed boat across the lake to Indaing, at the western end of Inle, for one of the most scenic trips on the Lake. Passing through the busy village of Ywama, the largest on the Lake, with many channels and tall teak houses on stilts; enter a long, often tree-lined canal, either side of which farmers cultivate their land against the backdrop of the Shan Hills. Disembark at the jetty and walk for 15 minutes through Indaing village to reach the 14th - 18th century pagoda ruins of Nyaung Ohak. Many pagodas here remain charmingly unrenovated, with plants and even small trees growing out of them, making the area very atmospheric. A covered walkway popular with souvenir stallholders leads up to Shwe Inn Thein Paya, a complex of weather-beaten 17th - 18th century zedi; some newly reconstructed. Lunch at Inle Heritage Stilt Houses.
Return the boat trip to Inle Lake - a photographer's dream. Its calm waters are dotted with floating vegetation and fishing canoes, to which scenic hills provide the perfect backdrop. See the lake's unique 'leg rowers' - Intha fishermen who row standing up with one leg wrapped around a single oar, leaving their hands free to manipulate the conical fishing net. Stop to see some traditional handicrafts - silk-weaving on wooden handlooms and a blacksmith's forge. Stop at Phaung Daw Oo Pagoda, the holiest religious site in southern Shan State. Pass endless floating gardens, where Intha lake dwellers grow fruit and vegetables. Return to your hotel by boat as the sun lowers and the light softens over the lake.
Accommodation at Novotel Inle Lake (Junior Suite) or similar, Inle Lake.
This morning, explore a 5-day rotating market (if your visit coincides with the schedule) which offers an insight into the life of the ethnic Pa-O, Danu and Inthar people who come to these markets to sell and buy goods. Proceed by boat to Nyaung Shwe. Lunch at Chillax Bristo Restaurant
At 13:00 hours, the tuk tuk will pick you up in Nyaung Shwe to the Red Mountain Estate vineyard and winery. Located near Inle Lake, The Red Mountain Estate produces the best wines of the country. You arrive at the vineyard and enjoy wine-tasting with light food. The small outdoor tasting room provides a commanding view over the terraced vineyard as well as a wonderful breeze. Beyond the rolling green hills, you can see shimmering Inle Lake and on a clear day you can also enjoy the surrounding mountain landscape. Afterwards, a short hiking on the rolling hills to the Kone Sone Village on the eastern hills of Inle Lake. After 2 hours walking arrive at the village, the stop will be made on the hill overlooking the scenic beauty of Inle Lake. Enjoy sipping wine while watching the magnificent sunset from the over the lake. Traditional home cooked dinner will be served on the picnic bamboo table. A unique experience to end the day in Inle Lake. Return to Nyaung Shwe by tuk tuk. Alternatively, you may choose to walk back downhill to Nyaung Shwe under the stars.
Accommodation at View Point Lodge (Cottage Suite) or similar, Nyaung Shwe. (Period until 30 April 2019)
Accommodation at Myanmar Treasure Resort (Deluxe Lake View) or similar, Inle Lake. (Period 01 May - 30 September 2019)
Transfer from Nyaung Shwe to Heho Airport (25 km - 1 hour) for your onward flight.

customise the tour

  • Purchase local products for souvenirs at the workshops
  • Unlimited photos opportunity throughout the trip


  • All sightseeing tour and transfer services with private air conditioned car/coach as detailed in our itinerary
  • Meals as specified in the itinerary (B=Breakfast, L=Lunch and D=Dinner)
  • All entrance fees for the places as mentioned in the programme
  • Transfers and tours with English-speaking locally-stationed guides
  • Boat trips as specified
  • Train ride Kalaw to Shwe Nyaung
  • Wine tasting and picnic dinner in Nyaung Shwe
  • Service charges, room tax and baggage handling
  • Accommodation at hotels as above mentioned or similar
  • Filtered drinking water and wet towels during the tour


  • Domestic airfare
  • Myanmar visa fee
  • Surcharges for throughout guides (English and other languages)
  • Personal expenditure, such as drinks, souvenirs, laundry, camera fees, communications, postage, gratuities etc.
  • Meals and services other than mentioned in the programme
  • Drinks with meals
  • Compulsory gala dinners during festive seasons and peak season surcharges which will be advised at the time of booking
  • (Peak season in general is between 15 December to 15 January and 13-17 April
  • Early check-in and late check-out at hotels, if not mentioned in the programme
  • Travel insurance (cover against all cancellation costs, medical expenses, including repatriation, in the event of accident or illness)


  • Hotel prices for packages are quoted bases on hotels as mentioned or similar. Higher or lower categories can be requested and the price will be adjusted. The hotels featured in the package tour are subject to availabilities at the time of booking.
  • Meals at respective hotels are also included in the hotel prices if the itineraries mention lunch or dinner at hotel.
  • Additional charges during Festive Season: Christmas, New Year and the Water festival period may apply.
  • Supplements for compulsory Gala Dinners will be advised at the time of booking.
  • All hotels have special booking and deposit conditions and will be indicated at the time of booking. Nonrefundable deposits may be required.
Tour code: PKHCTSEB

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