Pyin Oo Lwin
The Colonial Hill station of Pyin Oo Lwin was a summer retreat during British Rule, it’s relatively cool climate allowing the British ruling class to escape the fearsome heat of Mandalay and lower Myanmar. During British rule Pyin Oo Lwin was also an important educational centre with the Government English High Schools such as St. Albert’s, St. Joseph’s Convent, St. Mary’s, St. Michael’s and Colgate all based here. Although now blighted by more recent buildings development, Pyin Oo Lwin’s Colonial Legacy still holds the key to the town’s charm and the surrounding area offers plenty to explore, including a number of magnificent waterfalls.
Pyin Oo Lwin’s beautiful botanical gardens are unique in Myanmar and the town itself retains a number of characteristic examples of 19th Century country houses, several of which are now hotels. The most famous is the Candacraig, a colonial mansion built in 1904 and although currently closed, it is sometimes possible to find the way inside. Another beautiful example is Governor’s House.
The Botanical Garden
Officially named National Kandawgyi Garden, the botanical garden was opened in 1915 and is still beautifully maintained. They are home to a wide variety of colourful flora and fauna, including dedicated flower shows and wildlife including gibbons and takin, goat-antelopes that are native to the Himalayas. There is a tall watching tower from which you can see 360 degree around the entire park and across to Pyin Oo Lwin and the surrounding area.
Waterfalls and Other Attractions
To the east of Pyin Oo Lwin, there is Pwe Gauk falls which are a series of small waterfalls and a popular place for locals to hangout, particularly during the holidays. A pleasant place to relax and while away an afternoon, you will find simple restaurant in the area for refreshment, and it takes around 15 minutes to get there by road from Pyin Oo Lwin.
The most impressive waterfall in the area is Dat Taw Gyaint waterfall, just outside Anesakan, to the south west of Pyin Oo Lwin. Situated at the head of a deep ravine, the lowest part of the waterfall splashes dramatically into a pool of crystal clear water in which you can swim. There is a pagoda by the pool and you can get snack and drinks there, after the half hour walk down from the car park at the top of the ravine.
The Peik Chin Myaung Cave is one of the most attractive in Myanmar, featuring a large number of shrines and picturesque waterfall at its entrance. It can be found approximately 20 km to the east of Pyin Oo Lwin off the road to Lashio.