Photo: The delicate process of teasing out lotus threads.

Handicraft villages

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Some of the lake’s villages specialise in various handicraft and cottage industries and the workshops form regular stops on most Inle Lake itineraries. Some are indigenous to the lake and others more contrived, but they are on the whole at least traditionally Burmese -- even the contrived ones create work and income for the villagers.

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Stops at the villages provide some structure for your tour, and give you a chance to get out of the boat from time to time and stretch your legs in between gaping at the beautiful floating gardens and stilted houses. Most have souvenir stands or even occasionally full-on air-con showrooms, but they are never really a hard sell. Bear in mind that if you stopped at all of them it’d take all day, so which ones are actually interesting enough to stop for?

Hanging the silk out to dry, In Paw Khone Village. Photo taken in or around Handicraft villages, Inle Lake, Burma_myanmar by Mark Ord.

Hanging the silk out to dry, In Paw Khone Village. Photo: Mark Ord

Of course, the bosses rake in the cash and the cheroot workers, for example, are paid a relative pittance -- but that doesn’t only happen in Inle Lake. These tourist sites do provide employment plus many would go on, whether tourists ... Travelfish members only (Full text is around 700 words.)


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Where to next?

Where are you planning on heading to after Inle Lake? Here are some spots commonly visited from here, or click here to see a full destination list for Burma_myanmar.


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