How To Get From Mandalay to Inle Lake?
Inle Lake is a perfect destination to explore the more rural and rustic side of Myanmar after experiencing the larger cultural and commercial hubs such as Mandalay.
Surrounded by high hills, Inle Lake is a travellers hotspot for its floating villages and towns inhabited by the indigenous Intha people. Visitors to the lake will observe the traditional wooden houses built on stilts, silk weavers engaged in their ancient artistry, and local fishermen exhibiting their unique rowing style.
The cheapest option to travel the 260-kilometer journey from Mandalay to Inle Lake is by a 6 hour bus ride, which costs approx $12. Alternatively, you can take a short 30-minute flight for $55.
Schedule from Mandalay to Inle Lake
|Bus||6h||$12||Check bus tickets|
Mandalay to Inle Lake by Bus
Duration: 6 hours
Currently, there are 2 bus companies operating from Mandalay to Inle Lake. See the schedules below:
It takes at least 6 hours to get from Mandalay to Inle Lake and the bus costs between $11 and $14, depending on the bus company and the type of bus.
OK Express (minivan)
- Departs from OK Express Bus Stop between 86th & 87th Street, Mandalay
- Hotel pickup is available
- Arrives at Famous Express located about 10 kilometers from Inle Lake
OK Express provides a 16-seater minivan for the Mandalay to Inle Lake route.
JJ Express (VIP bus)
- Departs from Chan Mya Shwe Pyi Highway Station just 5 kilometers from the center of Mandalay
- Arrives at Odyssey JJ Express located about 10 kilometers from Inle Lake
This is a VIP (2+1 Seat Layout) Bus service suitable for travellers who desire a comfortable ride from Mandalay to Inle Lake.
Important to note that all international tourists are required to pay $10 Inle Zone fee.
Mandalay to Inle Lake by Flight
Duration: 30 minutes
The fastest option to travel from Mandalay to Inle Lake is by taking a flight from Mandalay International Airport to Heho Airport, the closest airport to Inle Lake. Travel time is only 30 minutes and one-way ticket starts at $55.
Mandalay International Airport is located 40 kilometers south of the city center. To get to the airport, you can take a taxi for around $10.
Golden Myanmar Airlines, Mann Yadanarpon Airlines, Air KBZ, and Myanmar Airways International operate up to 5 Mandalay-Heho flights daily with convenient departure times. The first flight leaves at 8:40 am and the last one departs at 10:20 pm.
Heho Airport is about 40 kilometers from Nyaung Shwe, the main town in the Inle Lake area. From the airport, you can take a taxi to Inle Lake for around $20.
Instead of taking a taxi at the airport, you can also book a private transfer from Klook for $21. When you book online, your driver will be waiting for you at the airport with your name on the sign.
My favourite places to stay in Inle Lake
BaobaBed Hostel is located in Nyaung Shwe, just a 15-minute boat ride from Inle Lake. The hostel offers free bicycle rentals, a rooftop spa bath, a restaurant, and a bar. The rooms are spacious and comfortable and the staff is known to be extremely friendly and welcoming. You will feel right at home here!
- Restaurant and bar
- Rooftop spa bath
- Friendly staff
- Clean and spacious rooms
Private rooms start at $19 per night
Offering an on-site restaurant, bar, and garden, Inle Inn is located in Nyaung Shwe, just a short boat ride from Inle Lake. All rooms have a private bathroom and air conditioning. Breakfast is included with your stay and can be eaten in the restaurant or delivered to your room.
- Breakfast included
- Excellent location
- Restaurant and bar
- Helpful and cheerful staff
Private rooms start at $21 per night
Set along the river in Nyaung Shwe, which links to Inle Lake, Thousand Island Hotel Inle Lake features large comfortable rooms. The hotel offers bicycle rentals, daily cleaning services, and 24-hour front desk. You can enjoy a snack at the riverfront café or a cold drink at their rooftop bar.
- Perfect location
- Café and bar on-site
- Wonderful rooftop view
- Spacious and comfortable rooms
Private rooms start at $41 per night
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