INLE LAKE OR SMILING LAKE
In the heat of the summer, who doesn’t feel like going for a swim? At the Asia Gardens Hotel & Thai Spa there are 7 outstanding swimming pools where you can go for a dip and enjoy an experience 100% Asian at our luxury resort in the Mediterranean.
But if you are heading to Asia this year, we recommend a visit to the Inle Lake, a sweet water lake in the mountains of Burma, 100 kilometres long and 5 kilometres wide; the second largest river in the country.
There are some 200 floating villages by the lake that appear stuck in time, as the life of the locals is rooted in the tradition of isolation. Its people are charming and simple, and have normally not seen passed the lake, hence it also being known as Smiling Lake, as people there are very welcoming.
Some of its main attractions are the motorised canoes, to go around the lake. There are no seats on the canoes, but owners place foldable chairs on them for tourists, in order to make their journey more comfortable.
The setting of the lake is astonishing. Locals have adapted to this environment using a very peculiar procedure to fish: they put their leg around the oar, and leaning on one leg they draw a semi-circle which propels them easily. This is a tricky and acrobatic way to fish for the rest of us, but they feel like fish in water.
Also, every five days, the floating markets add a touch of colour around the coast. They buy and sell from their boats; life on dry land is rarely seen.
Along the way, there are more than 100 Buddhist monasteries, where mainly only monks live.
The Pindaya Caves are also a must. This is one of the holiest spots for Burmese people. The place consists of open caves with an almost vertical limestone wall, which contains thousands of Buddha images on the inside. These Buddha images have been left there for centuries; it is said that there are more than 8,000.
If you also wish to have a permanent smile on your face during your holiday, we recommend a visit to the Asia Gardens Hotel & Thai Spa, an oasis with luxury pools, where we will pamper you this summer.