Pa’o Market near Shwe Inn Tain Pagoda complex – Inle Lake, Myanmar

A short distance from the main Shwe Inn Tain Pagoda complex (which will be coming up shortly in a future post) is the Shwe Inn Tain Monastery and this small market.

Many of the market sellers were of the Pa’o ethnic group.  Many of them are easily identified by the traditional woven cloth headwear.  Tradition is obviously changing with modern conveniences, as we spotted a handful of Pa’o people utilising beach towels instead of their traditional coloured cloth.

In this part of Myanmar, near Inle Lake, in Shan state, they are the second largest ethnic group.  There are anywhere from 600,000 to 1.8m Pa’o people living in Myanmar and also they live in parts of Northern Thailand also.  They share a language and culture with the Karen people.

While I don’t like visiting small villages or situations where people are put on display, in a bustling market like this one, it was perfectly acceptable IMO to take photos.  It was done discretely, politely and didn’t hinder their businesses.  My understanding, and it appeared from the small amounts of produce being sold by individuals, that these were small market growers, selling their freshly harvested product.

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To see more about our visit to Myanmar, click here.  Upcoming posts about Bagan and Inle Lake will be coming in the next few weeks so be sure to follow my blog.

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