Hsipaw and the Green Hills of Northern Shan State
Hsipaw is a delightful town located in a valley, surrounded by green hills offering some of the best trekking spots in Myanmar.
There are many ways to spend your time in Hsipaw. One option is to take a two or three-hour hike through the panoramic scenery of paddy fields and other seasonal crops, passing small creeks, Shan villages, local schools and monasteries, where you can learn about Shan life and its thriving home industries, like cheroot cigar rolling and bamboo weaving.
You can also take a boat ride down the Dokthawaddy River in the direction of Baw Gyo Pagoda, stopping off along the way to walk through the orchards belonging to a former Shan Princes. Aside from the trekking, one well-known story about Hsipaw is the story of the town’s last princes, documented in the book, Twilight Over Burma: My Life as a Shan Princess by the Austrian-American writer Inge Sargent. Published in 1994, the book has an almost fairy tale beginning, starting when Sargent first arrives in Myanmar, but unfortunately ending in tragedy. In 2015, her story was made into a movie called, Twilight Over Burma.
One of the most colorful tribes in Shan State is certainly the Palaung, who are famous for their tea plantations which produce tea of the highest quality. Even today, many of the older Palaung women still wear their traditional costumes. During a full day of hiking with us, you will visit two or three different villages and have a simple lunch in a local village on the way. The walk will take you through tea plantations, colorful fields and forests, and up and down gentle hills. It is an enchanting day surrounded by spectacular nature, where you come into contact with some of the most interesting ethnic tribes in this part of Myanmar.
From Hsipaw, a ‘must do’ is to journey by rail to Mandalay via Pyin Oo Lwin – crossing the famous Gokteik Viaduct. The train slows down on the second-highest viaduct in the world for you to take in the beautiful views of the Shan mountains on either side – an awe-inspiring way to end your magical trip to Hsipaw.
For more information or to book this authentic trip, please email to [email protected].