Trekking Myanmar: Hsipaw

IMG_2227Far less touristy than the Kalaw to Inle trek, Hsipaw offers a greener scenery and more traditional villages. We visited villages of the Shan and Paulang tribes, some of them not used to welcome foreigners as the area has been opened to the tourist only since 2012.

The most popular place to arrange the trek is Mr Charles Guesthouse. You can choose from one day up to four days trek. I did the 3 days trek and will highly recommend it if you have time, I would have definitely spent an extra day if I could. The trek is not physically hard even though is a bit more hilly than the one from Kalaw to Inle.

The price is 10$ per day and includes a guide, three meals per day plus a tea break with snacks and accommodation with local hosts. The food is really delicious, dishes made with the local products and cooked in a way that you can´t find in the restaurants.  You can purchase water and beer at the house and our lovely guide Ewom got us rice wine from the village! We had an amazing time playing games, the guitar and singing around a bonfire.

There is also no electricity or running water in the house, but there are buckets available to shower and a squat toilet outside.

What I loved the most about this trek was the great company of our guide, the fellow travelers and the incredible friendly locals that we found along the way. From children who ran around to grownups who invited us to play Chinlone, the national sport of Myanmar.

Chinlone uses a ball made from rattan and is played by passing the ball between each other within a circle, without using the hands. There will be one player in the center of the circle who is trying to reach the ball and the point of the game is to keep the ball from hitting the ground.

The last day we walked to Ewon village and he took us to Syn School were volunteers are welcome to teach English. If you are interested you can contact the program at Shan Youth Network.


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