20 December 2013 – To be honest, Pindaya wasn’t initially on our itinerary.
The town, located on the western side of Shan State in Myanmar is mostly known for a series of limestone caves which have become a pilgrimage site for Buddhists. The caves have also become quite a tourist attraction, though not one we had planned on visiting.
However, it was a place my dad (who we were fortunate to have travelling with us on this leg of our Myanmar trip) was keen to see, so we decided to make it a half day trip.
The following images on this post were captured with the Fujifilm X-E1.
On the road to Pindaya
Our journey began at Heho International Airport. After finding a taxi for the just under two hour trip into town, there was nothing left to do but to sit back and enjoy the passing Shan countryside outside our window. The following are a couple of snapshots taken from our moving ride.
Arrival at Pindaya
Before getting to the caves, we made a brief stop at the main town centre to look for a place to have lunch. The town was a nice change of pace from the hustle and bustle of big city Yangon, and it was interesting to see the many horse carts around, sharing the dusty streets alongside cars and motorcycles.
A short stroll on the main road in town led us to Dagon Restaurant where, just as the menu described, there were indeed many kinds of fry!
The traffic outside was an eclectic mix of motor vehicles and horse drawn carts.
At the Caves
After lunch we headed to the caves and proceeded up the covered walkway to the main entrance. For those who don’t wish to climb the stairs there’s the option of an escalator.
Once at the top, you can catch an impressive panoramic view of the township below.
The interior of the caves at Pindaya are filled with statues of the Buddha. The southernmost cave is the most visited, holding hundreds of statues donated by people from all around the world.
Leaving the caves, we returned to our ride to continue to our next destination – Inle Lake (perhaps the highlight of our time in Myanmar). On the way, we made a brief stop at a town named Aung Ban for some refreshments.
While there, I captured this light-hearted moment – a man pulling a cart with a young lady in the back, both sharing a laugh as they passed by…quite possibly at the tourist with the camera!