Kyaing Tong is known for its scenic beauty and the many colorful ethnic tribes. It is situated in the Eastern Shan state, 452 km from Taunggyi and 176km from Tachileik. It is the principal city to the East. Some of interesting places around the city include the spa, Naung Tong Lake, Sunn Taung Monastery, Central Market and traditional lacquerware works and weaving factory. There are many villages of various ethnic tribes residing around Kyaing Tong. Visitors can observe their tribal dances and their way of living which remains as it have for centuries.
Lashio was famous in World War II as the starting point of the Burma Road. It is the capital of the Northern Shan State Lashio, located 280 km uphill from Mandalay, and it’s convenient to travel there by car. Most settlements are Shan and Chinese. The area borders the Yunnan province of China. The highlight is to enjoy the most spectacular scenic views of the Shan plateau traveling one way by a winding road and the other way by train with a twisting and turning hilly terrain. It is a trade center and the terminus of the railroad line from Mandalay.
Muse is a small town on the banks of the Shweli River; it is the main border gateway between Myanmar and the Yunnan Province of China. The Shweli River forms the border between Myanmar's Shan State and China's Yunnan Province at Muse. Located 190 km from Lashio, it is a bustling trading center and Muse motels offer modern facilities
Thipaw is 200 kilometers (124 miles) northeast of Mandalay along the railway line to Lashio. It is a compact, picturesque town, the center of which hosts a lively morning market, while in the evenings the downtown movie theater is packed with locals taking in the latest production from Yangon. Scattered around are restaurants serving up local Shan dishes, Chinese dishes, and more recently a number of teahouses have added banana pancakes to their list of offerings. Hsipaw is really worth visiting because of its natural beauty. It is surrounded by blue hills with a peaceful river flowing through its fertile valley; also because of its long and interesting history and its historical ties with the Myanmar kings of bygone days. Accessible by train, bus, or car, you should opt to use our private cars, which make numerous stops possible along the way. Visitors come especially in March of each year where the nearby pagoda of Baw-gyo holds its annual festival. The tribal people wear their colorful costumes, join to trade and to see the all-night theatrical shows.
Monywa is situated on the eastern bank of the Chindwin River. It is 136 km Northwest of Mandalay and serves as a major trade center for India and Burma. In town there are busy markets and popular restaurants. Monywa Hotel, now privatized, has comfortable four-room bungalows with attached amenities, all air-conditioned. If you are traveling to Monwya by car you should stop about 20 kilometers before to visit this most unusual Buddhist temple complex on 37 acres of land, which is part of the Mohnyin Forest Monastery retreat. If you can go in November or around that time, you can see the annual pagoda festival, which goes on for several days when the villagers from all around come to enjoy the music and dancing, and buy from the various stalls set up by sellers from all over the country.
Shwebo was the first capital of the last dynasty of Myanmar kings. It is located 64 miles North of Mandalay. A riverside town on the Ayeyarwady River which is famous for glazed pottery works from toys, cups, letters, bowls, and pots to huge water jars that are tied together floated down the river as rafts. The place offers royal parks, lakes, moats and watchtowers that have been neglected, ravaged and ruined in the last two centuries. With the promotion of the tourism industry, the government has launched the reconstruction of the palace buildings and parks, and it has dredged the royal lake for the benefit of the visitors and locals.
Mogok, is a city of gems, the heart of the gem-zone and the center of the gem trade. It is where most of priceless gems are mined and it lies in a beautiful mountain valley, 128 miles Northeast of Mandalay. It takes about a 7 hour drive to get there. The Great Lake of Mogok is in the center of the city, lying like a pool in the garden. Most residents make their living by mining and cutting, polishing and marketing gemstones.
There are now over 1000 mines of two types, tunnel and open-cut. Rubies and sapphires are found in most of the mines. Mogok also produces numerous other gems of lesser quality. If you really are interested in gems, it is a must see in your tour program. You should have at least three days for the round-trip from Mandalay to Mogok. First, make a pilgrimage to Chanthagyi Pagoda, the name implies you'll be immensely rich soon! Then go to Mogok gem market, where you watch others buy and sell, a thrilling spectacle. At Shwepyiaye ruby mine, see the collection of gem gravels, which are then washed and scrutinized from start to finish. In the evening, you can climb up to Kyeenitaung to see a sunset view of Mogok and gaze wistfully towards those lovely Lisu villages.