Welcome to the weaving, now this is, lotus, silk and cotton weaving on handlooms, it’s all handmade, so some of those beautiful wraps that you see, both the ladies and the men wearing, this is how they make them. See, very labor intensive, very slow, takes a long time, I’ll find out how long it takes to make one garment, but it really is quite remarkable to see. There’s lots of these, on the lake, or around the lake, this is in the floating village, now you can see, the weaver’s or bobbins have their different colors of thread in it.
Inle Lake Pagoda Market Monastery Aerial of Inle Lake Floating Village Floating Gardens Photo Gallery
So she fills in so many of the colours she wants then switches out the bobbin, puts the next one in, slowly, slowly pedals with their feet to make it go backwards and forward, makes the shuttle go backwards and forwards. So, have a closer look at that. There’s a mixture of colours and patterns that they weave here for ladies, this one, here we go, oops, camera, camera, camera alright, and this one, here we go.
Thank you very much, and it takes on average, one lady like this, two days to make one of those. Rolling into our next stop, handicraft and hand rolled cheroots, or cigar making, I don’t smoke, but let’s go and see how they make these things. And we’ve made it to the big pagoda at the bottom of the lake, went and saw the cigars, interesting but I’m not really a smoker so not that interesting.
Now I made it to the big pagoda and there’s always, pretty much a permanent market, at the bottom of the pagoda, but this is very much a tourist market, and this is not for locals at all, as you can see around, its tourists, tourists, tourists because they come to see the pagoda of course, but everything they sell here, it’s a tourist market, not a local market. So a good place for picking up souvenirs and is in sync, I’ll go and take you and show you the pagoda, which I’m looking here, apart from having an entrance fee, it also has a camera fee, a post camera fee of five hundred kyats, or a photo camera fee for five hundred kyats. So, I now have to pay that too, but I’ll hopefully get some pictures of the inside for you, so you can see what it’s like, soon as I get past these people, and up, here.
So here’s the, oops excuse me ma’am, here you go, and again the usual things, so no socks, no shoes, short pants, sleeveless blouses and be quiet. We are inside the big pagoda at the end of Inle lake, it is fantastic, and it’s, quite amazing in here, look at this. I don’t know if you can see, I’ll show you some closer footage if you can’t, but in the middle, of the temple, of which ladies are not allowed to go in by the way, you can in the outside temple, but you’re not allowed past this part.
But in the middle of the temple, as you can see right there, is basically lumps of gold. We’re at, the monastery, let’s go in and have a look around. Now this used to be called the Jumping Cat Monastery, because they used to, the monks used to exercise the cats, by making them jump through hoops, but they don’t do that anymore, because it was a bit frowned upon, some people thought it wasn’t, cruel, they were just exercising with the cats, the cats probably loved the interaction, but no more jumping cats, but still cats, and this is still a very impressive and large, monastery.
And we are still in the middle of a lake, so I’m not sure how the cats first got here, because cats don’t really swim, and they were completely surrounded by water on all sides. And here we have a look around, look at all these shrines. Oops.
And now, at the floating gardens, just a obviously you can’t drive through them because obviously they’re growing food there, but here you can see, all the rows, and this goes on for miles and miles. It might be better, if I show you this shot from the air, so you can see how vast these gardens are. A beautiful day on Inle lake.
I forgot all the things I’ve done, it was a great day. Got back mid afternoon, enough time to, go put everything on charge, because I ran out battery power, surprise, surprise hey, took so much footage, I hope you’ve enjoyed the bits that I’ve shown you, and yes, got back in time, put batteries on charge, then went to get something to eat, because I didn’t have lunch on the way, because the places on the way, there is places to eat, but they’re quite touristy, and reasonably, very expensive because you’re like sitting on the lake, so, I just ate plenty breakfast, took a few snacks on my boat, and then just ate at o’clock when I got back, in town, back at the chicken place, which cooked roast chicken on barbecue for me, anyway I digress. But yes, it was a beautiful day, now what you’ve got to remember with Inle lake, a lot of people, I hear a lot of people, or a few people when I’ve been going around, complaining that it’s not a real, not a real experience, because you know these people are brought here for the tourists, and to a certain degree, yes the places you go, they are, but how you’ve got to look at it, is that, what you’re getting is a snapshot of, a lot of Myanmar life, brought to you, so you don’t have to go, because a lot of these, like the long neck women and a lot of the weavers, they wouldn’t normally be this close to the lakes edge.
They’ll be in the remote mountains and hills, and it’s, especially on a short time budget, it’s almost impossible to see them in real life. So what you’ve got to look at the Inle experience apart from seeing the lake, and the beauty of the lake and the fishermen, which are doing their natural life, and the floating garden and the floating village, and the markets which are, real life shall we say, the weaving and the cigar things, what you’ve got there is, you’re actually getting an opportunity to see that bit of, Myanmar life, that you wouldn’t see otherwise. So yes, they have brought them in, but they are still working, they’re still working for a salary and making the products, and then obviously they’re trying to sell them to tourists, but they do sell them.
So it is a real life experience, just in a slightly artificial situation, but it is giving, you or me as the visitor, the opportunity to see something, that we wouldn’t be able to experience otherwise. So, I still enjoy it, it hasn’t got too touristy, there’s, there was no pressure on me to buy anything, you know I went to the silversmiths, I went to the several weaver’s and I went to cigar, and they offered things to sale, to have a look around the shop, and there’s always a shop attached to them, I politely looked around but I showed no interest, I didn’t really want to buy anything, and there was no sort of hassle or pressure that you must buy. You know I’d already taken photos and things like that, a couple of the times I did, voluntarily there’s little tip box, I put something in the tip box, but there was no pressure to do that, and there was no pressure to buy anything either, which is really nice.
So, you always, and I always enjoy and going out in the lake is always so beautiful, oops it’s just and again, a bit calmer than yesterday, so it’s really beautiful. Now, sadly leaving Inle Lake, and this area in Nyuang Shwe, packed up, all out of my room, everything on charge, nice full tummy, ready for the journey because it’s another night bus time. This is my third night bus, third night bus, now traveling from, here in Nyuang Shwe, to Mandalay.
So, and just enjoying, look at that over there, let me show you this rather than pointing the camera at me, to see me off, I have this, beautiful, evening, how gorgeous is that?.