Which River Cruise Ship Should You Choose For Your Irrawaddy Tour?
The boat floats in the middle of the river; on the river banks are beautiful quite villages. Magnificent temples appear in the distance and space is full of golden and red light. The picturesque scenery like that is one of the numberless memorable moments visitors can catch in their Irrawaddy River cruise holidays. If you desire to have your river cruise on the Irrawaddy in style, there are a lot of travel companies offering various ships for your voyage. We recommend some of the popular ones so that you can choose the river cruise ship which is most suitable for your want and need.
Belmond – Road to Mandalay (belmond.com)
The Road to Mandalay offers three- to 11-night itineraries from Yangon in the south to the town of Bhamo, only 50 miles in the north to the Chinese border. The ship started to cruise the Irrawaddy River in 1996. It was refurbished in 2008 after being damaged by Cyclone Nargis, and guest capacity reduced to 82 passengers to increase space and comfort.
Road to Mandalay is more like a floating boutique hotel than a big river cruise ship. Overall décor is light and airy, combined with local carvings and antiques. The ship comprises 40 luxurious cabins, with TV, DVD, wardrobe and bathrooms with showers. There is also an Observation Deck with swimming pool, and gourmet dining, including both Western and Eastern menus. In addition, a gym and a small spa provide guests with various services.
Belmond – Orcaella (belmond.com)
Orcaella, the baby sister of Road to Mandalay, offer the similar itineraries to its sister. The river cruise ship was created by local craftsmen in Yangon, and the elegant inferior was designed by Francois Greck — a French-born architect who now lives in Asia.
The ship has 25 spacious staterooms with private bathrooms, of which four are interconnecting and 17 are suites. The amenities include flat-screen TVs, iPod docking stations, DVD players and air-conditioning.
Meals are served in the main restaurant on the Upper Deck, and lunch can be served alfresco on the Observation Deck if the weather is fine. Afternoon tea is served in the Piano Bar (Upper Deck), and early-morning tea and coffee can be served in cabins on request. Tea, coffee and bottled water are free of charge and available at all times.
There are also a fitness center, spa and splash pool on the Observation Deck. Moreover, a shop, hair salon and medical facility with an onboard doctor are present on the ship.
The river cruise ship is ready for use from July to December and January to April. The price included all meals, excursions, transfers and domestic flights.
Tonnage: 200 feet
Sanctuary Retreats – Sanctuary Ananda (sanctuaryretreats.com)
Sanctuary Ananda sails on eight itineraries, from three-night cruises between Bagan and Mandalay to 11-night ones along the Irrawaddy and Chindwin rivers.
The river cruise ship comprises 21 cabins, located on three decks, of which 4 are Luxury staterooms. All staterooms have balconies with room to sit outside. The cabins are decorated with local fabrics, wood and lacquerware and vintage photography on the walls; they have iPod docking station and iPad connectivity, personal electronic safety deposit boxes and air-conditioning.
Meals are served in the main dining room, Talifoo Restaurant, and alfresco lunch is available in the Mindoon Restaurant. On the upper Bhamo Deck is Kansi panorama lounge, a sun deck and plunge pool. There is also the Thambayadine Spa, where local treatments and massages are available.
All meals, soft drinks, local beer and guided sightseeing are included in the cost of Sanctuary Retreats. Both domestic and international flights are not included.
Launched: Late 2014
Tonnage: 200 feet
Passengers: 46 adults, plus 4 children
Pandaw – Seven river cruise ships (pandawexpeditions.co.uk)
Pandaw pioneered cruises on the Irrawaddy River in the 1990s. The fleet of seven ships sail one-, two-, seven-, 10-, 14- and 20-night Burma itineraries on the Irrawaddy and Chindwin rivers: RV Indochina Pandaw (60 passengers), RV Orient Pandaw (60 passengers), RV Pandaw 2 (48 passengers, RV Kindat Pandaw (40 passengers), RV Kalaw Pandaw (40 passengers), RV Katha Pandaw (32 passengers), anb RY Kalay Pandaw (10 passengers).
Tea, coffee, beer, soft drinks, and domestic spirits are free of charge and served at the bar/library on the upper deck.
Having Irrawaddy River cruise holidays in style may be not easy for all tourists as the price is relatively high. But you will able to have the best time with perfect services on a luxurious river cruise ship in exchange.
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