Best Routes To Travel From Bagan To Inle Lake, Myanmar
Apart from Bagan, Inle is another place that you should visit when you are in Myanmar. Inle is not a centralized town but a cluster of tiny communities connected via fishing boats, floating markets, and houses on stilts. Getting from Bagan to Inle Lake can be done in one day as it is just 215 miles from east of Old Bagan.
To get there from Bagan, you can go by airline or by minivan, bus, or private vehicle.
Duration - 8 to 11 hours
There is a bus station in Bagan but they will pick you up directly at your hotel and drop you off at the bus terminal in the nearby town of Nyaung Shwe. From Nyaung Shwe, you will need to take a taxi to your accommodation. Most lodges and hotels scattered along Inle Lake which can take 10 to 45 minutes from the bus terminal. If your hotel is on the water, a great way to get there is by water taxi which is much more scenic especially when the sun is coming up. JJ Express is the main bus that connects Bagan with Inle Lake. It’s a comfortable, full-sized VIP bus with air conditioning and reclining seats.
By Mini Van
Duration- 8 to 10 hours
Mini van took the same route as the bigger bus, which is a little decent than bus but they are more cramped. That said, it is a great option for budget traveler. Also, keep in mind that customer service is not as top-notch and sometimes the driver straps your luggage to the top of the vehicle which can result in unnecessary wear-and-tear to your suitcase.
By Private Vehicle
Duration - 8 to 10 hours
Another option is to hire a private vehicle to take you to Inle Lake from Bagan. If you have big group of travel companions or want to have private trip, you can rent your own car and arrange a private trip with your own driver. With the private van, you trip is faster than bus. It can roughly take 7 to 8 hours to travel from Bagan to Inle Lake.
Travelling by land can be a long trip but it is scenic. It passes fairly close to Mt. Popa which is a sacred monastery on top of a volcano that makes a great day trip. As the travelling time is long, it is better you brought snacks and water with you.
Duration - 40 minutes
Travelled by air line is the fastest and most convenient way to go from Bagan to Inle Lake. There is Myanmar Airways International (MAI) and Air KBZ which operate flight daily from Nyaung-U airport (NYU), Bagan to He Hoe Airport (HEH), Nyaung Shwe. It is only a 40-minute flight but keep in mind that it takes 20 minutes from Old Bagan to Nyaung-U airport and took 45 minutes from He Hoe Airport to Nyaung Shwe Town. To round up, it might probably take about 4 hours or so.