Into the Back of Beyond - Part One / by David Johnstone

The road trip to Mindat, Chin State

Setting off from the town of Pakokku by minibus (late obviously), I headed out into the countryside and ascended the Chin Hills towards Mindat in western Burma. It’s a beautiful, verdant landscape, studded with trees and framed by peaks. I say hills, they’re actually considerably larger than the Scottish mountains, the highest peak being Mount Victoria at 3,035 metres.

The rolling Chin Hills are more like mountains at 1,500 to 3,000 metres in height

The rolling Chin Hills are more like mountains at 1,500 to 3,000 metres in height

My transportation for the 7 hour journey - thankfully I got the front seat!

My transportation for the 7 hour journey - thankfully I got the front seat!

The transportation was ok - jam-packed as always - and it was a pretty bumpy, white-knuckle ride though I was happy to get the front seat therefore avoiding the vomiting passengers in the back. We passed lots of villages, resting for some lunch and affording me some nice little photo opportunities. Still, 8 hours sat cramped on a minibus doing a mountainous ascent isn’t great for the posture. I was relieved to hit Mindat as the sun set and the temperature dropped.

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A Buddhist ceremony passes by the bus

A Buddhist ceremony passes by the bus

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Great food, lots of different dishes and very cheap - around 90p for a full-on lunch of chicken, fish, beef, vegetables, salads, noodles and rice. Delicious too!

Great food, lots of different dishes and very cheap - around 90p for a full-on lunch of chicken, fish, beef, vegetables, salads, noodles and rice. Delicious too!

The welcoming party... 

The welcoming party... 

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