Inle Lake – traveling back in time

Inle Lake Sunset Fisherman by Aaron Hooper

A journey to Inle Lake in the Shan State of Central Myanmar is akin to traveling back in time – a simpler time in a less complicated world.  But while life at the lake might be free of many problems we face in our modern world, it is not an easy existence.

Local people, who inhabit the villages scattering the shores of the lake, are hardworking, kind and welcoming. The lake itself is their home, their provider, their throughway – it’s their entire world. Their lanky wooden homes are propped vicariously on stilts above the water’s surface; each family, if lucky enough to be able to afford one, parks their longtail boat underneath their home; food is grown on rows of floating seagrass that acts as soil for the gardens – the lake provides the rest of the nutrients.  And then there are the fishermen – those pictured here practice a centuries-old form of fishing with bamboo baskets in the shallow waters of Inle.  Their silhouettes on the backdrop of the setting sun are iconic.

And the sunsets at Inle are legendary. The hues of pinks and golds are accentuated by the heavy humid air hanging over the water surface as the sun sinks behind the surrounding mountains. To say Inle Lake is special is an understatement. It is a bastion of simplicity in the ever-more complicated modern world.

To read our interview with Aaron Hooper and see more of his photographs, click here.

Follow Aaron Hooper’s work on @ahooperphotography on Instagram and on @AaronHooperPhotography on Facebook. Contact Aaron for sale of limited edition prints or for private or business photography shoots bookings on


Aaron Hooper
Aaron Hooper

Aaron Hooper is a Phuket-based photographer and RL Phuket contributor. Contact Aaron for sale of limited edition prints or for private or business photography shoots bookings on

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