Pindaya is a town in the Shan State of Burma. It is located in the west of the state in Pindaya Township in Taunggyi District. Mainly famous for its limestone caves called Pindaya Caves where thousands of Buddha images have been consecrated for worship over the centuries, it is also one of the towns that host an itinerant market every fifth day.
According to local legend, the term Pindaya is a corruption of the word Pinguya, which translates to Taken the Spider in Burmese. The name arose from the legend that there was once a large spider which resided in the caves and it had captured a local princess. The princess was rescued when the giant spider was slain by a prince using a bow and arrow. When the spider was killed, the prince was said to have exclaimed that he had taken the spider, that is to kill it. Thus, the exclamation became the name of the region, and from it Pindaya received its name.
The Pindaya Caves, a mild 45 minute walk away from the town, are the most famous attraction the town has to offer. Pindaya is famous for its limestone caves, its attractive lakeside setting, and the traditional Shan paper umbrellas that are manufactured here. Set deep in the hillsides, the caves (some of which serve as meditation chambers) contain some 8971 Buddhas of various sizes, which are made of white marble, bronze or plaster, and coated with gold leaf. At the entrance to the caves sits the 15 metre tall Shwe U Min Pagoda. The caves are a pleasant 45 minute walk from Pindaya town centre. A good round trip involves first walking south along Shwe U Min Pagoda Road, which includes an atmospheric section passing between gigantic trees whose trunks and branches weave unusually along the ground; you can then return from the caves to Pindaya along the covered walkway that follows the hillside – where there can also be found a beautiful teak-built monastery (Sin-Goung Monastery).
Another lesser known attraction is the PlanBee Beekeeping Center. Visitors can test and buy pure organically made local honey and other bee products while enjoying a cup of coffee and the gorgeous view of Pone Taloke Lake.