Despite being the capital of Chin State since 1974, Hakha is by no means a large city – and remains a simple and undeveloped place, reflecting the state as a whole. With its wide, dusty streets, slatted wooden buildings, and prominent churches, Hakha sometimes feels like it has been transplanted from the American wild west.

Above Hakha there is a viewpoint from which you can see the entire city and the surrounding mountains – and often a bunch of local teenagers hanging out. For maximum effect, take in the vista at sunrise or sunset; watch our YouTube video here. The viewpoint can be found just off the road to Gangaw, and is a long walk or short taxi/motorbike ride from the centre of town.

Another point of interest is the Chin national football and athletics stadium called Vumtu Maung, which can be found on the east side of town. A large structure, the stands that surround the dusty playing field and track are unusual in mostly being made out of wood.

As with much of Chin State, the majority of the population in Hakha is Christian (for more information on religion in Myanmar, go here). A feature of Hakha is the colourful clothing that the locals wear. There are a number of tailors around town, as well as a number of shops where you can buy locally made traditional Chin jewellery

Located at an altitude of 1,867 metres (6,128 feet), Hakha can get cold, particularly winter nights in December and January. There are a number of simple guest house choices; most are comfortable, but do not have hot water (you may be provided with a large thermos flask to wash with). Electricity can also be limited to certain hours of day in Hakha.

For a wider selection of photos from Hakha, go to our Flickr photo set.

For more on traditional textile craftsmanship in Hakha see this Kite Tales blog and to find out about local music, go to our blog post ‘Musical traditions in remote Chin State’.

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