Hpa-an and Around
Hpa-An- The Capital of Kayin State (299 Km from Yangon by car) homeland of the Karen people, Hpa-An is an energetic, friendly town on the banks of the Thanlwin River. The main attractions though are scattered around the beautiful surrounding countryside, making this is an ideal area for relaxed touring.
Places of Interest
• Mt. Zwegabin
• Thamanya Monastery
• Kawgun Cave
• Kyaung Kala
• Saddar Cave
• Bayin Nyi Cave
Mt. Zwegabin- The Zwekabin Hill has a very unusual shape, which, once seen, is not easily forgotten. Rises around 650 Meter steeply from the plains. A pagoda is on top for those who are fit enough to walk up to the top. It takes app. 2 hours, but the view over the river and the plains will compensate you for the strenuous walk. There is also a monastery on the top.
Kawgun Cave-Kawgun cave is located near Kawgun village, which is two miles distance from Hpa An township. It is a natural lime stone cave and measures 200 fts height and 300 fts length. The rock surface is profusely decorated with different kinds of clay Buddha images and votive tablets. It is a rare cave in the lower Myanmar. According to the style of the Buddha images it can be datable to 15th century A.D. Hanthawaddy period.
Saddar Cave-This breathtakingly huge cavern contains a pagoda near the entrance with many Buddha images. Further in the cave becomes a dark and wild place with many huge stalactites, the home of a large bat population. Continue to the end of the cave to find a hidden lake in the mountains. Bring a torch as the cave, beyond the entrance is very dark.
THANDAUNG-Soon after the end of the Second Anglo-Burmese War in 1852, when Lower Myanmar was annexed, the British using imported Indian labourers first developed Thandaung as a hill station.
Thandaung is only 200 miles away from Yangon and can be reached by car or bus on a halfday's journey. If visitors prefer using the railway, they can ride the train from Yangon to Taungoo in about six hours and from Taungoo to Thandaung it is only 27 miles up by car passing through lush virgin forests, see cascading mountain streams and climb gradually to over 4,000 feet, to reach Thandaung.
Thandaung is a very beautiful hill station and an important tea, coffee and fruit producing region. It is the land mark of the Kayin state.