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Myitkangyi Village

New Tourist Destination on the Ayeyarwady River

Day return trip for MANDALAY-SHEINMAGA-MYITKANGYI-SHEINMAGA-MANDALAY

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DESTINATION (2)

08.00 am - Depart by car from central Mandalay
10.05 am - Arrive in Sheinmaga, by way of Sagaing Bridge
10.25 am - Depart by small boat from Sheinmaga
11.35 am - Arrive at the cooperative fishing village of Myitkangyi
11.40 am – Light refreshment at Visitor Centre
12.00 noon – Village tour
13.00 pm – Picnic lunch at Visitor Centre/ read information boards/ shopping
14.00 pm – Casting fishing net with the fishermen
15.30 pm - Depart Myitkangyi, Visit Tawyagyi by boat
16.10 pm – Arrive Sheinmaga
16.30 pm – Depart Sheinmaga by car
18.35 pm – Arrive central Mandalay

After breakfast at your hotel, we will pick you up at 08.00 am by car. En route to Myitkangyi, we will pass over the impressive Sagaing Bridge from where you can see the many beautiful pagodas on Sagaing Hill. From here, we proceed to the west of the Mingun Hills seeing in the distance the famous Kaung-hmu-daw Pagoda. Our journey is now through open countryside. For those of you interested in wildlife, there are many rare and interesting birds to be seen, including the endemic White-throated babbler. If you are lucky you will also see Oriental honey buzzard and Red-wattled lapwing. At 10.00 am you will arrive at the busy market town of Sheinmaga, which is on the west bank of the Ayeyarwady River. Here you will be met by the village boat. Now you are on the river! It is beautiful. There is always something happening. On the banks, watch the women with their children do the washing. There are boats of all sizes and shapes - big boats going far up-river to Kachin State; smaller boats, travelling from village to village. On the hills, stupas flash golden in the sun. We arrive in Myitkangyi at 11.35 and have some light refreshment in the Visitor Centre. Here, there are information boards that explain about life in the village, the fishermen, the wildlife and especially the Irrawaddy River dolphins. Now we are ready for a village tour which will be led by one of the local villagers. We will see the local farmers and meet the fishermen’s families. In the fields we will see the women – maybe they are planting rice or perhaps they are harvesting the peanut crop. The village is full of traditionally designed wooden houses and the dusty tracks between them are home to the bullock carts that carry the villagers and their crops to and from the fields. We have lunch in the visitor centre and this is also an opportunity to look at some of the handicrafts made in the village and which are available for sale (fixed price – they are lovely, so please bring some Myanmar kyat with you – dollars will not work in a village!!). In the afternoon, you will learn for one hour to become fishermen/women. Casting a net looks difficult but is surprisingly fun to learn. You will be taught by the fishermen using specially designed, light weight nets. First you will cast on land and then you will go with the fishermen in a small fishing boat to a shallow area of the river and you will try and catch your own fish! You return to the village, say goodbye to your new friends and take the boat back to Sheinmaga. If you are lucky, you may see a passing dolphin – always a wonderful sight. The car will deliver you back to your hotel by 18.30 pm after a full but unforgettable day.

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Myitkangyi Village

  • • population: 375 in the main village; over 500 including the two neighboring villages of HinTha Ma and KyetTuYwe
  • • the population has nearly doubled since 1970
  • • there are 25 fishermen, all of whom live in one compound in Myitkangyi - in addition to fishing they are also part time farmers
  • • the men fish most days, travelling as far north as Tongyi Village
  • • the women make fishing nets, sell the fish and look after the children
  • • the current generation is the third generation of Myitkangyi fishermen
  • • even in Myitkangyi there are some illegal electric fishermen
  • • agriculture production - ground nuts (dry season); paddy (rainy season) - also beans, chickens, ducks, cows and pigs
  • • they grind peanuts to make peanut oil (using pestle and mortar powered by a bullock)
  • • there is no electricity
  • • 2 primary schools; one secondary school one mile from Myitkangyi
  • • Daw San San Win, one of the village school teachers studied 2 years at the Teacher Training College and is currently in the final year of an economics course at the Distant University of Education
  • • subjects taught at the primary school include Myanmar, English, Maths, Science, Painting and Drawing
  • • 3 monasteries with a combined total of 24 novices and monks
  • • the village has moved 3 times in the last 30 years because of erosion of the river banks.

 

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