disembariking in a village at Inle Lake.
Inle Lake is a freshwater lake located in the Shan State. It is the second largest lake in Myanmar at an altitude of 880 m. It is very shallow. During the dry season, the average water depth is 2m, with the deepest point at around 4 m, but during the rainy season this can increase to around 3,5m.
Although the lake is not large, it contains a number of endemic species. Over twenty species of snails and nine species of fish are found nowhere else in the world.
Inle Lake with its leg-rowing Intha people is a major tourist destination in Burma.
The people of Inle Lake some 70,000 of them, live in four cities bordering the lake, in numerous small villages along the lake's shores, and on the lake itself. Most are devout Buddhists, and live in simple houses of wood and woven bamboo on stilts; they are largely self-sufficient farmers.
Most transportation on the lake is traditionally by small boats, or by somewhat larger boats fitted with single cylinder inboard diesel engines. Local fishermen are known for practicing a distinctive rowing style which involves standing at the stern on one leg and wrapping the other leg around the oar. This unique style evolved for the reason that the lake is covered by reeds and floating plants making it difficult to see above them while sitting. Standing provides the rower with a view beyond the reeds. However, the leg rowing style is only practiced by the men. Fish caught from the lake - the most abundant kind is Inle Carp are a staple of the local diet. In addition to fishing, locals grow vegetables and fruit in large gardens that float on the surface of the lake. The floating garden beds are formed by extensive manual labor. The farmers gather up lake-bottom weeds from the deeper parts of the lake, bring them back in boats and make them into floating beds in their garden areas, anchored by bamboo poles. These gardens rise and fall with changes in the water level, and so are resistant to flooding. The constant availability of nutrient-laden water results in these gardens being incredibly fertile. Rice cultivation is also significant.
Hand-made goods for local use and trading are another source of commerce. Typical products include tools, carvings and other ornamental objects, textiles. A local market serves most common shopping needs and is held daily but the location of the event rotates through five different sites around the lake area, thus each of them hosting an itinerant market every fifth day.
Silk-weaving is another very important industry, producing high-quality hand-woven silk fabrics of distinctive design called Inle longyi. A unique fabric from the lotus plant fibers is produced only at Inle lake and is used for weaving special robes for Buddha images
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macjake (54830) 2013-10-13 4:23
I was surprised to read that there are 9 species of fish here that are found nowhere else in the world, thats amazing.
amazing too because the water is so BROWN!!
and I'm not sure if i'm seeing it correctly or not, but thats one long boat :)
interesting notes in your document, it makes the photo that much better.
love seeing the architecture in the bg too.