Nyaung Ohak And Shwe Inn Thein Are Located At Indein And Consist of Ancient And Recently Built Buddhist Shrines, Inle Lake, Myanmar

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Inle Lake Region

A narrow, foliage-cloaked canal winds through the reeds to the lakeside village of Inthein (also known as Indein), dotted with stupas dating back a few centuries. The Apocalypse Now ambience evaporates somewhat when you see the waiting tourist boats and souvenir stalls, but no matter – the pagodas on the hilltop are still incredibly atmospheric. Inthein is on the five-day rotating market circuit and this is one of its busiest and most lively stops.

The first group of ruined stupas is immediately behind the village. Known as Nyaung Ohak, the crumbling stupas are choked in greenery but you can still discern some ornate stucco carvings of animals, deva and chinthe (half-lion/half-dragon deity).

From Nyaung Ohak, a covered stairway climbs the hill, leading to Shwe Inn Thein Paya, a complex of 1054 weather-beaten zedi (stupas), most constructed in the 17th and 18th centuries. Some of the zedi lean at crazy angles while others have been reconstructed. From the pagoda, there are great views across the lake and valley. For even better views, there are two more ruined stupas on conical hills just north of the village, reached via a dirt path behind Nyaung Ohak. You could easily spend a few hours exploring the various ruins here.