Skip to main content


Big Sur - Hiking Andrew Molera State Park

One of the great delights of living in the Bay Area is the proximity to the natural beauty of California and it's hard to beat the stunning drive down Highway One to Big Sur. This is certainly one of the iconic American road trips, but for me the joy of being in the area is getting out of your car and hitting a trail, so you can be "in" the landscape rather than just looking at it from the asphalt. 

Kakku - Lots and Lots of Stupas

I'm not really sure what possessed me but I thought Kakku sounded interesting and that I could work it into our itinerary on the way (not really) from Bagan to Nguang Shwe! This meant that we  would drive directly from Heho airport to Kakku and then on to the hotel at Inle. I can't say I recommend my thinking! This is a long drive, hours to get there and hours to get back. It would make sense if you were staying over, or doing some walking in the region, but if you are considering a day trip I would suggest taking an extra day at Inle instead.
However, this is not to say that we didn't enjoy our trip, the landscape on the drive is magnificent, rolling hills and heavily cultivated farmland, broken up by small villages. Because Kakku is on Pa-o land you have to pick up a local guide and it was very interesting to hear about their  culture traditions and social structure. Shan State is a very diverse area with a large number of ethnic groups with diverse cultural traditions. On the way from the airport we we stopped at a Shan restaurant for a delicious lunch and passed through villages settled by more recent Nepali and Gurkha migrants who remained in Burma after fighting for the British during the Second World War. 
Kakku is a large site with thousands of small stupas collected together
Many of the stupas are covered with these decorative covers.
The stupas have been heavily restored and the "restoration" was sponsored by commercial interests and foreign firms, many from China.
Local sign in three different languages, I think they were Burmese, Shan and Pa-oa.
Here are the stupas seen in the reflecting pool, as you an see there are thousands of them. Dave described it as, "A huge garden of stupas!"
For all of my Burma posts click here.