Explore Lashio - A Trading Town of Myanmar on a next trip to Myanmar Explore Lashio - A Trading Town of Myanmar on a next trip to Myanmar

Explore Lashio – A Trading Town of Myanmar on a next trip to Myanmar

Explore Lashio – A Trading Town of Myanmar on a next trip to Myanmar

Few travellers journey north of Hsipaw (or, as called by the locals, Thibaw) to Lashio the capital of northern Shan State, choosing to continue their travel southward or westward to other better known sites. However for those who chose to make the trip by motorbike or train will find Lashio to be a place that is much more pleasant than its reputation of merely a trading city.

Lashio is off the beaten track Burma and sees very few tourists. The town itself is not of huge significance to the visitor but is worth a visit for its frontier atmosphere, being at the southern end of the Myanmar Road and the last major town before the Chinese border.

The hills that surround the town are home to many ethnic minorities and during your time here you are sure to see many colourfully dressed minority people in the town’s streets and markets.

About 200 kilometers northeast of Mandalay, with an area of around 23,300 square kilometers, Lashio is the habitats of several ethnic groups of Myanmar such as Palaung, Chinese, Kachin, and Shan. Its main township and principal town are also named Lashio.

The township is famous among Burmese for its natural resources, and the town is the largest one in the northern part of Shan State. The town of Lashio is located at the end of the Burma Road connecting it and Mandalay which was built by British.

In the past, tourists only came there when they wanted to visit China.  However, nowadays, Lashio is well known as a hill resort thanks to its cool and pleasant weather. Furthermore, the town is a trading center in northern Shan State which is accessible by railway and by road from Mandalay (Mandalay Hill).

The highlight about this trip is to enjoy the most spectaculars scenic views of the Shan plateau traveling one way by winding road with elbow crossing hilly drive and the other way by train with twisting and turning hilly trek.

Crossing over historic Gokehtaik viaduct will be an unforgettable experience. There is a hot spa near Lashio which is always crowded with local pilgrimages to enjoy the nature warmed both of they believe bathing here will purify body and mind.

YanTineAung Pagoda

YanTineAung Pagoda in Lashio Myanmar

Lashio is home to a few interesting religious sites including Sasana, YanTineAung and Mansu Pagoda, a colourful Catholic Church and centrally-located mosque. It is also home to Myanmar’s largest Chinese Pagoda, fitting given its geographical location and substantial Chinese population. They can easily be visited in a half-day, after seeing the morning market.

Mansu Pagoda

Mansu Pagoda in Lashio Myanmar

There is easy access to Lashio by bus from Mandalay or Yangon on Shwe Mandalar bus lines. 15,000 Kyat ($15 from Yangon). This bus is comfortable. You can upgrade to 22,000 Kyat ($22 from Yangon) for VIP class bus. You can buy bus tickets online by searching for Myanmar Bus Tickets, and the site I used I was able to pay with Paypal. There are also vans that travel once they are full.

You can fly to/from Mandalay, Tachileik, Yangon, Heho (Inle / Kalaw), or nearly anywhere in country. Lashio airport is an old military airstrip, as are almost all airports in Myanmar aside from Yangon and Mandalay.

There are many places to eat around town that will get you satisfied. If don’t know names of favourite dishes, you can always point at the picture or ask for Shan Kauk Sway noodles. In the evenings, there is a night market in the downtown market area, and many tea shops in the area will be open, as well as you can get street food.

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