3-day trek from Kalaw to Inle Lake

Trip Start May 05, 2008
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Trip End May 05, 2013


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Where I stayed
Dream Villa Guesthouse

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Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Kalaw is a trekking base town. We had just one night here and did not really get the opportunity to explore the town. Our ramblings tooks us to the Everest Napali resturant and to the Hi-Snack bar where we met some locals and heard tales of a wily Irish man called Francis Murphy who could polish off a whole bottle of whiskey. He returns to Kalaw often and met a local girl and now leaves in Yangon.

The next day we met our guide Mishal and set off on our 3 day trek from Kalaw to Inle lake. This trek took us 50 km through the hills with an overnight in a village house and a monastery. During this trek we met many villagers and got to see what life is like in the hills. The scenery is amazing and you get to see many locals working the land using tools and techniques that perhaps were common in Ireland during my grandparents time but have now long been forgotten. You will see men ploughing the paddy fields with oxes. Women planting rice, picking tea, harvesting tomatoes and many other crops. The men do a lot of the heavy work but it is the women and children that work hardest out here.

We took many photographs here and they really tell the story better than any words that can be put down. Mishal can speak a number of the different hilltribe dialects and we got to meet a great many people and drink tea with them. Also he brought along a cook who always set off ahead of us and had food prepared for us. The food was great but unfortunately I got a bad case of the shits and couldn't eat much for 2 days.

The weather was good all the way. We covered an easy 15km on day one followed by 20 km and finally another 15 km on the last day. It was reassuring to catch glimpses of Inle lake on the last day and we were glad to rest.

This was by far the best experience of our trip. It is not so commercial and it is done in away that does not adversly affect the hill tribes way of life.
Highly recommended!
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