Hsipaw Travel Guide

  • The 'Palace'
    The 'Palace'
    by burmafan
  • Balcony on side of house
    Balcony on side of house
    by burmafan
  • Hsipaw
    by picek

Hsipaw Things to Do

  • Shan Palace Hsipaw

    Before you go you must read 'Twilight over Burma' to understand the significance of this house and its sad circumstances. then you will want to visit. This is a piece of living history. Descendants of the price still live there and are keen to meet tourists. Restrictions of earlier years have now been lifted.

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  • This is important - read it.

    I must say, I find it extremely hard (on many levels) to write this tip, and I have been thinking long and hard about the exact words I'm going to use.Until relatively recently, one of the "must do" things for travellers was to visit the residence of the last Shan Prince of Hsipaw and talk to the current owner, his nephew, called in the local...

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  • A good place for a beer.

    A wander along Namtu road, or restaurant row as I dubbed it, can very quickly degenerate into a pub crawl. To be honest, in the noonday heat, the best place to be is inside sipping a nice cold bottle of Myanmar or a Dagon draught.The Khit Mee, on the West side of the road down near the main Lashio Road is as good a place as any to indulge in this...

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  • Mahamyatmuni Paya.

    This is probably the largest religious building in Hsipaw, although it's nowhere on the scale of the great Payas in Yangon, Mandalay or even Prome (Pyay). It is the Mahamyatmuni Paya. The Lonely Planet guidebook assured me it was one of the busiest religious sites in Hsipaw, although on the afternoon I visited I had the place more or less to...

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  • Main market.

    I simply love wandering about markests, particularly in Southeast Asia. There is such a vitality to them, and in most of them you get the impression that you are actually mixing with local people (obviously there are "touristy" exceptions to this).The main market in Hsipaw is wonderful. It is held in a large permanent structure, and the range of...

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  • Interesting for early birds.

    There are two markets in Hsipaw. the main market (see seperate tip) is in the large permanent structure East of Namtu Street and stays open all day. The second market is the morning market where local people gather to sell mostly foodstuffs. It is a much more ad hoc affair, held under tarpaulin awnings, as you can see.If you're on a very strict...

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Hsipaw Restaurants

  • Don't ask me what it's called.

    There are a number of restaurants on Namtu Road that don't have names. Actually, that's not strictly correct - they do have names but I just can't read the Burmese signs. This is one such place. It was a bit of a culinary adventure as there is no English menu and not a word of English spoken. It was a matter of looking in all the pots and pointing...

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  • Good but a bit touristy.

    This place is quite sizeable by local standards and seems to have quite a reputation amongst travellers, although there are equally good places nearby that never seem to be patronised by Westerners at all.Having said that, the place is clean, service is good and it has an English menu. It has a fairly wide selection of Chinese and Shan dishes and...

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  • Great curry - endless food!

    OK, so this is not the most imaginatively named restaurant in the world (it's not even the most imaginatively named restaurant is Hsipaw!) but don't let that put you off. The food in here is really good. All meals are a "set" curry which means you get your bowl of curry, an impressive array of condiments, and a plate of rice that is refilled...

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Hsipaw Nightlife

  • Let's watch a movie

    The only entertainment you can get at night... watch a movie in the cinema. The cinema is in town, 3 types of prices: 200Kyat, 300Kyat and 500Kyat. I dont know if there are foreign movie but I only saw Myanmar movie in Hsipaw.The audience are to stand up to pay respect to the national flag before the start of the movie but most people dont really...

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  • Football (soccer) in the cinema?

    I'm a bit of a night bird really, and did find it somewhat hard to come to terms with everything closing relatively early in Myanmar. I did, however, on a Saturday night, find a most unusual entertainment in Hsipaw.There is quite a large cinema in the middle of town which normally shows Burmese / Indian films. The Burmese, however, absolutely love...

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  • Hsipaw Hotels

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Hsipaw Transportation

  • Train to Hsipaw

    Train travel from Mandalay to Hsipaw passing Pyin Oo Lwin, Goiktek Gorge and Kyaukme. Traveling by train in Myanmar is cheaper and more comfortable than traveling by bus. It costs me US2 to travel from Pyin oo Lwin to Hsipaw, 7 hours (only if you are lucky). Most of the time the train is not on time. Ask the train station, he is the one who know...

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  • Let the train take the strain.

    If you visit Hsipaw, you will probably come from, and return to, Mandalay. There several options for this route, share taxi, bus or train. I got the share taxi to Hsipaw, and found it most uncomfortable. This is purely due to my size and being cramped in a small car. The return journey, which took considerably longer, was by train and far more...

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  • train to hsipaw

    It takes app. 7 hours to get to Hsipaw by train from Pyin U Lwin and costs 2 USD/person. It's often crowded and you have to be careful when placing your baggage on the shelf above your head as it may fall down to someone's head and cause injury... It's nice experience to go by train, as lots of locals do the same. And there's the famous Gotkeik...

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Hsipaw Local Customs

  • picek's Profile Photo

    by picek Written Sep 13, 2008

    Shan beer is something special and different than other Burmese beers: it's pink colored and has very little alcohol (I'd say around 3,5 %). It's cheap and popular among Shans (and other peoples for whom it's more affordable, but haven't seen many foreigners drinking it), though I don't know exactly what substance makes it look so pinky. That beer is local and non-gov. alternative to more expensive national brands and you would be able to buy it from small shops by the streets. Unfortuanetly, it is not too tasty - but probably you'll not gonna drink it to get drunk anyway (would take too long and you'd consume too much water). It's interesting to try one.

    Related to:
    • Budget Travel
    • Beer Tasting
    • Seniors

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Hsipaw Off The Beaten Path

  • Vertigo sufferers need not apply!

    Although this place is actually many miles away from Hsipaw, I've had to include it here as the VT machinery doesn't allow for a Goktiek page. In fairness, it's not so much of a problem as the only way you are going to see this amazing sight is if you are travelling on the Hsipaw - Mandalay train.This remarkable structure was built for the British...

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  • Take a walk.

    One of the great things about Hsipaw is getting out of it, and I don't mean that unkindly at all. A short walk in almost any direction will take you to small communities which appear to be fairly unvisited by Westerners. I went for a pretty long walk one afternoon / evening and didn't see another traveller. Furthermore, the reaction of the local...

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Hsipaw Favorites

  • Big Ice Factory run by hydro power in...

    You can visit a large of orange farms and wounderful ice factory that run by natural water power ,invented by U sai Hsai and sons ,in Pan Hsao village and see the live of poor people. I always remember the day I was there and the people are really good hearted and cheerful.

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  • Visit the family of the Shan Prince

    I visited the nephew of the Shan prince, Mr. Donald. It was very interesting talking to him and asking him all the questions I had on my mind about Myanmar, its history and economical relations to China and the rest of the word.

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  • Walk through the village

    I loved to walk through Hsipaw and observe the daily life there. People take a bath in the river, children play in the school yard, litle novices ask for food, muslims go to the mosque for praying...plenty of things to see here! People are very natural and life seems to be as in paradise.

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