Loikaw is the capital of Kayah State in burma (Burma) - the home of tremendous tribes of which Padaung is very renowned one with "long necks" women.
Loikaw is located in Karen Hill area, near the State’s northern tip, just above an embayment on the Pilu river. Just by a short flight from Yangon, you may reach to a very traditional Loikaw, which is one of the best places in Southeast Asia for a spectacle of authentic tribal life. Another way to reach Loikaw is that you may boat from Inle lake - where you may observe “one leg rowing fishermen” - to Phekhkone lake, visit Sagar village on the way then drive to Loikaw. Or you drive from Kalaw/ Heho to Loikaw and you could relax spectacular view along the way.
Loikaw has three main tribes: Kayan, Kayah and Kayaw, especially among them, Kayan (or Padaung) women are well-known for wearing neck rings, which lengthen their neck.
To explore Loikaw, you may take a classic tours to some particular locations or a trekking journey to distant areas.
In a burma Classic tour:
With this adventure, you could travel known for places inside and around Loikaw city. You can travel Thiri Mingala Taungkwe Pagoda, the Buddhism sputa. It is located in the middle of Loikaw, which towers over the city. Being constructed in 11th century, this pagoda situated in two hillocks. Between two hills is a bridge which connects them. You be able to watch desolately at the pilgrims and relax the stunning landscape from the top, especially at sunset.
Other destination you may travel is Shan chieftain, Haw of Loikaw. This palace used as a Buddhist monastery.
If you do not have a occasion to get to tribe villages, you may bring an excursion to the Kayah State museum, which displays the traditional life styles of Kayah national races.
Besides, local markets like Demawso are also the wonderful places where you could see Padaung tribe ladies with their really long necks. These special women are on the brink of extinction because of state of the art life, which made Padaung women do not want to keep their neck lengthening tradition.
If possible, you may find out Kyet limestone cave, which is 15 km outside of Loikaw.
To make it an journey tour:
By trekking through remote villages, you be able to find the true life of local inhabitants, but this depends on regulation of authorities and sometimes it may be not permitted.
attraction of Loi Kaw journey tours is Padaung race, especially Padaung women with their extremely long necks. Tribes in Loikaw also dress colorful costumes. In the villages, you may get insight traditional living ways, unspoiled cultures and also how the villages deal with the taking ways of the military, who carry their food without payment. Travelers can uncover Kayah traditional weaving industry and marvelous ritual flagstaffs of Nat (spirit) worshipers. Trekking trails also pass through fields. A long with paddy, the main crop of Kayah State are beans, pulses, maizes, sunflowers, cotton and vegetables are cultivated as well. Guides also lead you to trek through hills and thick jungle.
You could also be overnight at homestay. At these nights, you will obtain strange feelings with noisy barks of dog at shadows or distant howls from across town, which you be able to not discover in a state of the art city.
Spirited poles are the unique point of Loikaw. You be able to found them in nearly villages around Loikaw. They are worshipped once a year, around April.