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Kayin State

kayin-01The capital Hpa an is by the Thanlwin River. The town is the capital of the Kayin ethnic group. The prominent Zwekabin Mountain towers above the town and pilgrim can climb up to the top to get a panoramic view of the countryside. Daily ferry service connects Hpa an with Mawlamyine but a road trip is also possible via Thaton. The tourist sites here are the Bayin nyi Gu or the Cave of two Twin King's Brothers on the way from Thaton. It is a cave on the side of the mountain and filled with Buddha statues. There are two pools beneath the mountain also. One pool is cool and one pool is warm but the waters do not mix.  Gawgun Cave is another interesting site. Hundreds of small plaques with Buddha images are stuck on the sides and roof of the cave with estimated age of 300-400 years. It had been inside unsecured areas and was very recently discovered and opened to the public. A boat down the Thanlwin River gets one to Kawgun village and a short walk to the caves. The Kawgun village in itself is a typical Kayin village and most interesting to see their daily lives.

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