Bhamo is a quiet town on the banks of the Irrawaddy in Kachin State, which is often a stop-off point for travellers on their river journey between Mandalay, Katha and Myitkyina. The town itself is quiet, but a pleasant place to hang out and relax. And near to Bhamo you can find the ruins of Sampanago, which was once the capital of the fifth-century Shan kingdom of Manmaw; the old city walls are five kilometres from the centre of town. On the way to Sampanago, you can also see the Shwe Kyina Pagoda and an impressive bamboo bridge, which is rebuilt every rainy season. Note that while Bhamo itself is secure and can be reached without a permit, access to surrounding areas is highly restricted due to ongoing conflict.