On our 7-nights exploration of northern Myanmar (Mandalay – Katha – Mandalay) we are visiting the picturesque, local fishing village of Hsithe on the Ayeyarwady River. But Hsithe is not a village as other local ones – it bears a secret, rarely known outside of Myanmar.

This petite village consists of only 150 households. The rural, hidden gem is located on the banks of the Ayeyarwady around three hours northwards of Mandalay by land. Via river though it can be comfortably reached and amazes with unaffected tradition and simplicity. Luckily, modernity has not yet found its way there.

The villagers are incredibly open-hearted. Our passengers are welcome to visit to their houses for little chit-chats and findings. Spending some time to explore the village and learn so much about the daily life and culture can be a juvenescent experience and let someone reflect one’s life that is too often marked by stress and hectic pace. The village is known for its peanut farming and rice paddies planting. You can also buy some delicious, self-made mango jam to remember this little spot in Myanmar while you savour this parfait on your favorite bread at home.

However, the real highlight in Hsithe is the unique symbiosis between nature and men. Fishermen have found a way to cooperate with the endangered Ayeyarwady dolphin during fishing. By tapping a small wooden stick against their boats, the fishermen and the dolphins communicate with each other and form a team to catch fishes together. The dolphins assist by locating the best spots in the river for fishing.

This village is so unique and peaceful that Heritage Line’s Anawrahta stays docked here in the evening and hosts a special on-shore cinema in the village after dinner time. Guests can meet the locals and exchange during that enjoyable socializing event. We have even seen some exciting football matches between Heritage Line Guests’ versus the Hsithe resident squad on the local pitch. What a fun day for our Anawrahta passengers in the small village of Hsithe – a long-term memory for sure.