With the unveiling of two, new 36-guest Suite Ships on the Irrawaddy and Mekong Rivers, travellers have the opportunity to live a luxurious and intimate “suite life” while exploring Southeast Asia with Avalon Waterways.
“In addition to unveiling our wildly popular Suite Ship design to travellers looking for a more exotic cruise experience in Myanmar or Vietnam and Cambodia,” said Patrick Clark, managing director of Avalon Waterways. “We are now sailing the Northern Irrawaddy River, introducing them to previously untouched parts of the world, including hundreds-year-old traditions and ways of life.”
The unique 14-day itinerary – Golden Myanmar & The Alluring Irrawaddy – features a deluxe 10-night cruise from Bhamo to Bagan with hotel stays in Yangon. For this very unique vacation, exclusively featuring the Upper Irrawaddy River, travellers will enjoy a walking tour of Yangon before flying to Bhamo (near the Chinese border) to embark on their cruise. On the cruise, they can visit a local school and nunnery in Kyun Daw; spend time in an elephant camp in the Burmese jungle; present alms to monks in Kya Hnyat; enjoy a walking tour of a pottery-making village (Kyauk Myaung); visit Kaunghmudaw Pagoda and Soon U Ponya Shin Pagodas in Sagaing; take a sampan ride at sunset in Amarapura; watch a traditional dance performance by firelight; relish the sights in Mandalay and so much more, including spending time in colourful markets and golden temples throughout the journey.
Both of Avalon’s new all-suite ships – the Avalon MyanmarSM and Avalon Siem ReapSM – deliver cruisers an intimate experience. One that invites them to truly engage with and experience the local culture and revel in the unique sights and sounds found along the Irrawaddy and Mekong Rivers. Built by local craftsman, the ships reflect the character, symbols and traditions of the areas through which they sail while also offering travellers the modern features they expect and enjoy.
On these ships, travellers are welcomed by 18 well-appointed Avalon Suites with 22 square metres of living space. And, while other ships may offer guests tiny balconies, these new ships introduce travellers in Asia to Avalon’s innovative, signature Open-Air Balconies featuring floor-to-ceiling, wall-to-wall panoramic windows measuring with retractable screen systems and doors that slide open, creating the feeling of sitting outside.
In front of each Open-Air Balcony is a private sitting area, complete with love seat, chairs and table. And facing the passing views is Avalon’s Comfort Collection BedsSM, inviting travellers to relax and enjoy every moment of cruising past the fascinating scenes of daily life on the Irrawaddy and Mekong Rivers.
“Our new Asia vessels mirror the experience found on our Suite Ships in Europe. But, perhaps as important as the attention to detail and appointments found on these ships is their overall size,” says Clark. “Both new ships – featuring only 18 Avalon Suites each – were designed to traverse more of the Irrawaddy and Mekong Rivers, providing travellers the chance to enjoy more of Asia. For instance, the Avalon Myanmar is small enough to cruise the spectacular Upper Irrawaddy throughout the season – a feat not possible on a larger ship. And the Avalon Siam Reap is the only ship in the industry cruising all the way from Ho Chi Minh City to Siem Reap (or vice versa), as water levels allow. And when sailing into the Ho Chi Minh harbor, Avalon guests are just minutes away from their deluxe hotel accommodations.
2017 Southeast Asia cruises offered by Avalon Waterways:
13-day Fascinating Vietnam, Cambodia & the Mekong River (Ho Chi Minh City to Siem Reap; Siem Reap to Ho Chi Minh City)
14-day Golden Myanmar & the Alluring Irrawaddy (Yangon to Yangon)
Avalon’s other exotic cruise offerings include the Yangtze River, Amazon River and Galápagos Islands.