Combine Myanmar’s highlights with authenticity on a luxury Irrawaddy cruise
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History & culture | River cruise
The mighty Irrawaddy’s giant blue snake forms Myanmar’s central divide before splitting into a rich and fertile delta. Trace its life-giving path with Princess’s Panwhar’s fortnight-long itinerary, which combines the country’s great sights with some of its lesser-known riverside gems. You’ll visit Bagan’s vast ancient city of gold-tipped spires and Indic temples and Yangon’s unique combination of colonial beauty and city-defining stupas before ending at Mandalay, Myanmar’s last royal capital complete with forested palace. In between, you’ll head off the beaten confluence to visit Anglo-Burmese battlegrounds, wooden colonial towns set in tropical gardens and riverside markets. Consider adding on a tour to Inle Lake afterwards to watch as stilted houses and floating gardens are all animated with the indigenous Intha people, rowing using their legs.
Across each of the ship’s 36 staterooms French or outside balconies make the most of spectacular vistas. Watch as river life plays out in front of you – locals punt traditional boats, monks walk to monasteries and fresh produce is brought to market. Back inside, rooms are among the largest on the Irrawaddy and feature the same fusion of contemporary design and Burmese accents that plays across the ship’s public areas. Throw in a flat-screen television, en suite bathroom, individual air conditioning, a desk/dressing table and queen-size (or twin) beds and this is luxury river cruise is an enticing proposition.
At cruise’s start, you’ll meet your fellow guests over a signature welcome dinner whose exotic flavours set the tone for the culinary delights to come. Geographically – and sometimes culturally – set between India and South East Asia, expert chefs will introduce you to the Burmese flavours that combine Indic richness with Indochina’s fragrance across light curries, delicately spiced noodle dishes and fresh salads. You’ll enjoy everything from fine dining meals to casual buffet-style with Western options always available.
Spend your free time in the air-conditioned lounge for panoramic views of the Irrawaddy or get even closer on the Sun Deck whose lounge chairs are the ideal place to unwind after a day’s exploration. For more considered relaxation, pamper yourself with a massage in the spa. There’s also a full range of on-board entertainment with informative lectures on the country’s unique culture and history put on by expert guides as well as performances from local artists, including a traditional puppet show. On shore excursions, excellent tours will uncover the mysteries of the country’s city-defining stupas, ancient world wonders and royal cities.
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