Trekking in Hsipaw and going around
Hispaw: A visit to a Beautiful town
Hsipaw is a small town which is located at the Northern Shan State and it is surrounded by mountains. Hsipaw was a famous city ruled by Shan Sawbwa. The town is inhabitant by Shan, Palaung, Wa, Lisu, and Kayin. It is famous among the backpackers and a town is a perfect place for hiking and trekking. The best way to travel to Thibaw is by train because it is the most exciting way to travel. The most exciting experience is when it passes over the Gokteik viaduct which is the second highest railway-viaduct in the world. You can rent a bike or motorbike to travel around the town. There are many famous places to visit in this little town and you must visit there during your trip to Myanmar. You can do the following activities in Hsipaw during your visit.
Trekking in Hsipaw
Hsipaw is famous for trekking and you can get the most exciting experience during the walking tour. You can choose to make day return trek or night stop trek around Hsipaw.
You are advised to explore and research about how to make trekking in Hsipaw in advance. The best way is to get in touch with local trekking guide and plan ahead depending on your time frame.
If you are planning to make a day return trek, you can walk in the rice field and visit Shan villages which are not far from Hsipaw. You can also enjoy the boat ride along the Dokhtawaddy river after the trekking.
If you wish to make a night stop trek, you can get the experience of staying together with the local tribe. Locals are very nice and you will have a wonderful time enjoying the beautiful landscape and the cultivated land.
There are several trekking tour services in Hsipaw. But Mr. Bike Trekking service is the most popular one. Here is the phone number of Mr. Bike Trekking Service. Phone: 09 786 565443. They have a three days trekking package and during trekking time, you will have a chance to try local food, visit local villages and have dinner in a jungle.
You can also make trekking tour in Pyin Oo Lwin and also in Kalaw (a hill city in southern Shan State) in Myanmar.
It is called little Bagan because of many crumbling stupas and ancient pagodas and ruins in this area. You can find little Bagan at the Northern part of Thibaw and there are many crumbling stupas.
These ancient stupas are one of the attractions of Hsipaw and it is a great place to take photos. None of the temples in this little-Bagan are renovated and repaired, therefore you can explore the ancient temples and ruins.
If Bagan is not in your bucket list for Myanmar, this Little Bagan can make you feel a little sense of Bagan, but frankly saying, it cannot replace the real feeling of Bagan.
Maha Nanda Kanthar & Hnee Pagoda
Maha-Nanda-Kanthar monastery is a unique monastery and the whole monastery is built with 147 wood pillars without any nails. You can explore this unique monastery and its architecture. Hnee Pagoda is also located near to Maha Nanda Kanthar and you can take an image there.
Thein Hill also known as Sunset Hill is one the most famous tourist attractions of Hsipaw. From this sunset hill, you can see the breathtakingly pretty sunset over the town and through Dokhtawaddy river. You can also find cute puppies on top of the hill, and you can feed them and play with them.
Grab some snacks and drinks before you hike up the hill and have a nice-picnic while enjoying the wonderful sunset.
Nam Tok waterfall is located on the west of Hsipaw and you can easily get there by motorbike or tuk-tuk. The beautiful waterfall is calm and peaceful. Another incredible waterfall is called Nam Hu New waterfall and it is easy to get there as well.
If you ask me to recommend the most wonderful place in Hsipaw, we suggest you visit the Confluence (Conflux). You can rent a boat and it only cost 20,000 Kyats for back and forth trip along Dokhtawaddy river. There is also a ferry likes boat and it can accommodate around 10 people.
This Confluence is the place where Namatu Stream and Sint In Stream meet. The confluences are the most beautiful part of a river and we guarantee that you will fall in love. But during the rainy season, the water will be a little bit muddy. Along the boat trip, you can also visit local Shan Village and monastery.
Hsipaw Palace (Hsipaw Haw)
Palace is called as Haw in Shan Language. In the past, Hsipaw was ruled by Shan Sawbwa (which has equivalent rank to Maha Raja in India) and Hsipaw haw is the place where Hsipaw Swabwa lived. The last Sawbwa of Hsipaw is Sao Kya Seng who disappeared during a military coup in Myanmar in 1962, Hsipaw haw was taken care by his nephew. (If you want to know about Sao Kya Seng, you should watch a drama named “Twilight Over Burma”).
Nowadays, people are allowed to visit Hsipaw Haw to take pictures and to see the life of Shan Sawbwa.
Where to stay in Hsipaw?
There are many clean, cheap and good places to stay in Hsipaw. You can choose the most suitable one based on your budget.
Among them, here is our recommended list.
Lily the Home
It is located in the downtown of Hsipaw. Room price ranges from 10,000 MMK to 50,000 MMK depends on the room types. Service is quite good and they will also help you to find the guide, taxi, bicycle, and motorbikes.
Other good hotels are
Mr.Charles Hotel (082-80105)
Tai Resort (09-5278275)
Kumudra Hill (09-30543799)
If you plan to travel to Hsipaw during peak season (You should check office holidays in Myanmar because nowadays Hsipaw is becoming a holiday destination for most of the local people), you should book a room in advance.