Are you curious about somewhere you can discover both nature and ethnic customs being blended harmonically in Myanmar? If you are the one, then, there would be no other place for you than this tranquil colorful town, Loikaw. Residing in the Karen hill area just above the embayment of the Pilu River, and at the northern tip of the state, Loikaw is designated as a capital and the main gateway to Kayah State.
The town which formerly was the administrative outpost of British Burma is surrounded by vast green paddy plantations, lakes, and densely forested hills. Besides, Loikaw is usually likened to a town colored with various ethnicity. Due to its perfection combined with beauty in nature and tribe, it has become an attractive destination for domestic travelers as well as tourists.
Some places that are worth visiting in Loikaw are as follows.
Taung Kwe Pagoda
No one would skip this pagoda if you visit Loikaw. Taung Kwe means broken mountains in Myanmar. As it goes with its name, Taung Kwe Pagoda is built on a split jagged outcrop of limestone mountains. Locating in the middle of the town, in the day time, it provides a panoramic view of the town along with the background of ranging mountains and extensive paddy fields and lakes. At night, Taung Kwe Pagoda is the best place to see the nightlife of the quiet town and to stargaze. You can get to the top compound of the pagoda either on foot through the staircase or by the lift.
Naung Yar Lake
A nature landmark of Loikaw, Naung Yar Lake is situated in the north of the town. It is a pleasant and perfect place for strolling along the bank of the lake while listening to the birds’ singing, feeling the cool breeze coming through the lake, and sometimes relaxing under the shady trees. There are teashops, local restaurants and bear stations near the lake, as well. Naung Yar Lake is a popular place in Loikaw not only for local families and young peoples but also for travelers to hang out and relax.
Lawpita Waterfall is located in the east of Loikaw and it is an hour’s drive from the town. A cluster of small waterfalls that originate from Inle Lake is inclusively called Lawpita Waterfall. There are three hydropower plants, and the waterfall can be reached through station 2. To get to the waterfall, you will need to have permission or ticket and should be prepared in advance since in Loikaw. The environment near the waterfall is green and fresh, and the scenery of the waterfall existing in stages is an aesthetic view.
This lowkey town, Loikaw offers plenty of trekking routes in surrounding villages and forests. While going trekking to the nearby villages, you can witness the lifestyle, tribal cultures, and ritual customs of ethnic people of Kayah, and especially Padaung (Kayan) women with brass neck rings are distinctive. There are Buddhists as well as Christians, besides minority of the tribe have ritual customs.
Loikaw is one of the hidden gems of tourist destinations in Myanmar. This place provides unique, mesmerizing, and interesting experiences to all those who visit there. It is an absolutely must-visit destination in Myanmar who wants to be outside of the usual tracks and witness the serene authentic beauty of nature.