Mountainous region, east of Bagan & Mandalay is the Shan State. Shan State can be divided into three parts, Northern Shan State, Southern Shan State and Eastern Shan State. In general, Shan State has a fine weather all year round. From November to February it is chilly, with the minimum temperature of 12’C. In March to October the temperature is moderate, ranges from 20-22’C. In the rainy season Shan State has much less rain than in Yangon and rains often at night. Travel in Shan State along twist and turning road is interesting. Breathtaking in many ways, with panoramic mountain views, pines and bamboo groves. At an altitude of over 1300 meter, the air is pleasantly cool, fresh and fragrant.
Northern Shan State
In Northern Shan State popular tourist sites are Hsipaw, Lashio and Muse. The Shweli River forms the border between Myanmar’s Shan State and China’s Yunnan Province at Muse. Lashio is 280 km uphill from Mandalay. It is convenient to travel by car. There are good hotels for overnight stay.
Eastern Shan State
Eastern Shan State , located in the Golden Triangle Area, is the border gateway opposite Mae Sai in Thailand. It is accessible by air or by road. It’s about 2 hours by air from Yangon. The Golden Triangle Paradise Resort is located on the banks of the river facing Laos and Thailand. 163 km to the north is Kyaing Tong, the capital city of the Golden Triangle Region and 787 m above sea level surrounded by Wa, Shan, Akha and Lahu villages. In high season, there are Yangon – Tachchileik flights daily and Yangon – Kyaing Tong flights quite frequently.
Kyaing Tong is perhaps the most scenic town in Myanmar’s Shan State. Surrounded by mountains and blessed by unspoilt temple and monastery architecture, it is the largest town in eastern Shan State. The name Kyaing Tong means Walled City of Tung and refers to a mythological founder of the city. Laid out around Nawng Tung lake, its architecture ranges from mouldering old colonial-style houses to nondescript modern structures. Its most distinctive buildings are several large Buddhist temples and monasteries.
Attractions for visitors include the unspoilt temples and monasteries of the city and surrounding countryside, as well as the large market, which serves vendors and shoppers from the many ethnic groups that live in Kyaing Tong and the surrounding hills. Perhaps the most meaningful souvenirs will be the photographs and memories taken home from this intriguing and isolated town. Visions of Kyaing Tong will remain with visitors for a long time. This unique and isolated corner of Myanmar is not likely to be forgotten.
Southern Shan State
Southern Shan State is one of the popular tourist sites in Myanmar. Tour highlights are Kalaw, Pindaya, Inlay Lake, Taunggyi and Kakku. A highway town Heho which is the jump-off point has the airport located about half way between Kalaw and Nyaung Shwe. Air Mandalay and Yangon Airways flies daily from Yangon, Bagan and Mandalay. Out of 135 ethnic minorities inhabited in Myanmar, most of them are living in Shan State. The tradition in Shan State is that each and every town and village, big or small has the market day only once in every five days interval which usually calls market day. That market day one every five days is crowded with ethnic minorities in their traditional dresses. At that market day the people of the surrounding villages bring their products and gather at the town market and exchange the commodities. The famous market in Southern Shan State is Kalaw market, Heho market and on the Inlay Lake is Maing Thauk market, Nam Pam market and Ywama market.