It sounds pretty impressive to say we trekked to our next destination. It makes us sound like we braved the wilderness to get there. Whatever the facts of the story, a fab journey came to an end with us reaching our destination of Inle Lake. In my head I had an idea of a semi large lake, surrounded by buildings. I was off- way off. As we hopped in our small boat, we weaved in and out of intricate routes, surrounded by buildings constituting homes and mini factories.
We had slightly messed up our travel plans. We were meant to stay in the gorgeous ViewPoint Lodge but we had arrived a day earlier than expected, so we had a last minute booking at the Songs of Travel hostel. Lacking google maps, we asked locals to guide us the way, which they happily did. Trouble was the hostel kept being ‘a little bit further down the road’. It was sundowner time. A bar was advertising happy hour and in we went….
Now just to clarify- the hostel had all our belongings. Our bags had been taken there while we trekked. But in the bar was a group- and they weren’t drinking happy hour cocktails- they were drinking whisky by the bottle. Lacking passports and all our cash, we gave up trying to find the hostel, and joined them.
It was now pitch black, in a place with very few road lights, and we were sufficiently well lubricated. We decided it was probably time to go find our hostel. Somehow all the roads were flooded, so on the hilarious walk to find the hostel we managed to end up thigh high in water. We did however eventually reach the hostel- a little out of time but bright, clean, friendly, and in possession of those passports. We checked in and borrowed a bike to head back into town- dry this time.
Back in town we decided to fully immerse ourselves in the Inle Lake culture….That’s right- we were off rollerskating. In the middle of town, all the locals gather for the free rollerskating. After a highly amusing exchange with Jake trying to get skates in his size, we hit the floor to show off our lack of talent.
The next day, feeling slightly sorry for ourselves, we started the day right with an epic view on the hostel roof for breakfast.It was time to hit ViewPoint Lodge. After the past few days, buzzing was an understatement.
We were welcomed with a drink of our choice as we checked in (it was 11 am and hair of the dog, but you know- holidays).
ViewPoint is a number of eco lodges set on the water. It was beautiful. In our bathroom were tubs of natural traditional Burmese treatments and the bed was heavenly. We were going to be very happy here. And this was before we’d even seen the breakfast…
We spent our afternoon cooking up a storm and then settled into our wonderful new room, full and happy.
The next day we decided to dedicate to one of my true loves- wine. We had heard rumours there was a vineyard, making Burmese wines, and there was no question of us not checking it out. 45 minutes later in a taxi, we had arrived at Aythaya, and the setting was so beautiful we spent the evening there, drinking the wine and watching the sun go down.
We spent our final evening drinking our sundowners at the hotel (£4 Margaritas… you can’t complain). Inle had been the most beautiful end to an incredible trip in Myanmar.
More info on ViewPoint here: http://inleviewpoint.com
If you fancy trying some Burmese wine head here: http://www.myanmar-vineyard.com
And if you fancy staying at the songs of travel, I don’t advise whisky beforehand: http://www.songoftravel.com