Inle Lake Boat Day Trip Myanmar Market Fishermen Silversmith Kayan people Floating Village

Good early morning from, canal to Inle lake, from Nyuangshwe. Beautiful morning again, sorry about the noise, all these boats are going up and down the river, it’s quite difficult to hear. Tucked into a nice breakfast, put on plenty layers, I’ve even got a nice blanket, because, it’s cold first thing on the river, and I’ve left a bit later, you can go earlier, but I’ve left a little bit later because it was so cold in the morning, you just don’t enjoy it so, I set off about : this morning.

Inle Lake Boat Day Trip Myanmar Market Fishermen Silversmith Kayan people Floating Village Photo Gallery

We’ve made it the boat, I’ve got my life jacket, blanket and we’re gonna go and spend the day exploring Inle lake, a bit more than we did yesterday, yesterday we just went really, went to the end of lake for sunset, so we’re gonna make our way down the canal again, into the lake, but this time we’re gonna go further down and hopefully see a lot more than yesterday, so, come on let’s go explore, Inle Lake before it gets too noisy if you can hear me, there we go, engine is started started. Let’s go. The engines are really noisy on the boat, the boats are quite tippy, you have to sit in the middle and sit still, oh now the breeze is coming, it’s cold.

Oops, smudge on the lens, hold on I’ll just clean you, that’s the trouble of being on a boat, you get the water everywhere, splashes let’s just, try and keep you clean, hold on, is that better? Excuse me if there’s any spots on the screen, anyway actually, oh, oh camera hello, hello, camera, camera, here we go, okay so we’ve been going for about twenty minutes arrived at our first village, which is the market, so, just hopped off the boat, gonna head, up there somewhere, turn right and look for a local market, now come on let’s go have a look. It’s our first stop on our Inle lake tour, and it’s nice to catch the market early in the morning, because usually they by about : o’clock, they start to peter out and go home because it gets too hot, a lot of these people have walked or come by boat a long way to get to the market, so, it gets hot, they close up and they head off home. And what I will do, is show you a little bit around the market before we head back to the boat.

Here we are at the market, as you can see, it really is more of a local market than a tourist market. There is a little tourist section where the boats arrive, but once you get into the market, it’s all locals and all local produce, mostly food items, its, markets are the lifeblood of Inle lake, and the surrounding areas. It’s where the people who grow crops, oops, it’s where the people who grow crops, in the mountains and the fields, meet the people who grow, the crops in the lake and the fish.

So you’ve got all the seeds, and the herbs to grow, up in the mountains, and then you’ve got the fish and the fruit and the veg that grows in the lake, this is where, they all get exchanged, and you can see so much, I mean I don’t know what half of this stuff is, really, I mean, I recognize a few peppers, and then there’s lots of random things. But, nobody bothers you because as you can see, they’re all busy going about their daily business, they’ve got their lives to live, that’s what’s nice about Myanmar, at the moment, in that, it’s not a tourist destination. These people haven’t changed their life to suit tourists, they are just going about their daily life, and a tourist with, obviously the camera in the way, They just, they smile, they’re polite, but then they get on with their business.

So it’s really nice to see Myanmar life, for real shall we say, rather than a lot of places, where you go to where, you know, the tourist has become the main source of income, and then the main source of life and it changes how they live, which is modern reality, but it’s nice to find a country now and again, where that is not happening. Well, if you’re gonna load the bike, you might as well load it properly, oh, there’s room for one more bag, yea it could just fit in there, see look at that, see there’s plenty of room. Really should have taken the shopping list from my wife or rather than just guess what to buy, I can do this, now, hope I remembered everything, I don’t want to come to market again.

Here we go, oh that’s it, oh it’s hanging down, that’s the least of his worries, I think, and I hope he hasn’t got too far to go, that is a well loaded bike, no problem, he says. Oops, he just missed a man on the road, there we go. Hey, that was the local, market.

Now back in the boat, next stop we’re gonna find some of the fishermen, then after fishermen, visiting the silversmith. I hope you can hear me, beautiful day on the lake, much calmer than it was yesterday, the mist is still hanging over the hills over there, really beautiful. The sun is starting to warm up, just over there is where the village we went to for the market, now, sit back, relax and enjoy the ride, let him do the driving.

We’ve come to a slight tourist area, because we’re now, crashing into, boat sellers, even if you’re on a boat you can’t escape. We saw the fishermen on the way, that was very nice, I got, somebody tried to sell us some silver from the boat, but now actually gonna visit a silversmith. Mingalaba, so let’s go, mingalaba, at U San Shwe silverware, let’s go and see what it’s like, see if they make stuff.

Off the boat, and into a little silversmith, so let’s have a look around them, see them. Of course no tour is complete without, somebody trying, persuaded to buy something. This is all real silver, only silver plated, silver plated? yeah inside are all pure silver, oh real silver, yeah, look at that and just in case, look open and they take Visa cards.

Inside no photo sir. Oh okay. Hey, very short boat trip from the silversmith down there, We’re now, at the win Kayan this is the ladies, that do the weaving, who have the long, necks let’s go see what’s around here.

Now these are the women from the Kayan tribe, and they, have grown up from five years old, they start wearing these, gold rings around their neck, and they gradually add and increase, the number of rings as they grow older, now where the tradition comes from, people are not really sure. There is several stories all of them great, some, that it was to prevent slaves taking them, others, it was to enhance their beauty, and another one, which is my favorite, is that it was to resemble dragons, which are sacred to the Kayan tribe. Welcome to one of the floating villages, there was a sign here but it’s in Burmese, so I can understand it, But this is the biggest, bigger or biggest of the four floating villages on Inle lake.

As you can see they are built on stilts, not really floating, shall I say, the water is quite shallow here, maybe three metres, they live up there, park their boats underneath, so they have their own parking garage. Quite beautiful, and peaceful. Let’s see if I can get the camera steady, so we’re at, we’re here after we visited the, yeah we did the silversmith, then we did the long neck weavers, and they were actually quite good, we had a look around, there was no pressure to buy stuff, obviously that’s what they take you there for, the boatman gets a commission obviously if you buy something, but it was very low-key, they showed you around, they were very nice to you very pleasant, they didn’t press you to buy or sell anything, so that was very nice.

And for like the long neck people weaving, you can leave a tip if you want to, so I left a little tip to say thank you for lovely shots, now we’re just bobbing around, the floating village having a look, this I presume is the school, kids are there, playing football mostly hiding in the shade, or I don’t know what they’re doing. Whatever kids do. So yes, there is a whole community here, it’s not just a few houses with a few people living in, everything is here, they have their own community hall, their own monasteries, the schools, there’s even a little hospital here, or a clinic, I should say, and of course shops, but most of the trading they do, is done at the markets that we saw earlier.

So they live here, they want to trade stuff, they go to the local markets and trade there, and of course, go everywhere by boat. Here we go, let me show you more, of the village as we go past..

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