Tag Archives: river

River Cruises in Myanmar

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Have you always wanted to visit Myanmar but not sure where to start? A River Cruise is an exceptional way to see the highlights of the country, without all the hassles. Here we share what you might expect from an Irrawaddy River Cruise.

Unsullied Waters

Myanmar (otherwise known as Burma) only recently opened its borders after a good long 50 years, making it a prime destination for any globetrotter. The country has all the charms of SE Asia while still maintaining its individuality. Even in the more popular sites like the UNESCO Valley of Bagan, Myanmar is still protected from the inevitable changes of tourism.

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A River Cruise is the best way to visit the more remote villages of the north, just 30 miles from the border of China. Cruises can start from either north or south, but the country is perhaps best explored first in the relaxing north and later in the more chaotic, bustling markets of the south.

The Irrawaddy River, also known as the Road to Mandalay, will open your eye to the ancient and unblemished cultures of rural Myanmar. Step back in time to a land full of oxcarts, monasteries, village markets, toddy palm trees, pottery masters. If you’re lucky, you may even glimpse the elusive Irrawaddy dolphin!

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When to Sail

Prime cruise season is from September to April. The driest, and coolest, season is between November and February. Starting May, Monsoon season hits SE Asia in full force, when the snow melt from the Himalayas swells the river to disturbing levels—avoid the traditional summer months.

Ship to Ship

Though ship amenities and features differ from cruise line to cruise line (and often ship to ship), guests can usually expect high standards on our renowned trips. Spacious suites, with large closets and private bathrooms, premium bar and restaurant, fascinating destination lectures, onboard entertainment, and sightseeing adventures.

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What to Expect?

Cruises typically run around 2 weeks in length, roundtrip Yangon or Bangkok to Yangon.

That’s 14 days or more to explore the Golden Land of Myanmar from top to bottom:

  • Start with a walking tour of the Shwedagon, said to be the oldest pagoda in the world
  • Fly north to Bhamo, where your boat awaits
  • Sail past ornate shrines, hillside villages and teak forests
  • Stop at island villages, learn about daily life of schoolchildren and fishermen
  • Visit a local market, and ride an elephant through a sea of teak trees
  • Pay your respects at the monastery of Kya Hnyat and learn about pottery-making in Mandalay
  • At Amarapura, enjoy a sampan ride at sunset
  • Watch a traditional puppet show
  • Sip local tea at a speciality tea boutique
  • Marvel at the 2,000+ stupas and pagodas in the Bagan Valley

Got your curiosity piqued? Call us up for a chat about possibility to cruise or otherwise explore the fascinating country of Myanmar. 503-224-0180 or email info@wittravel.com. 

READ MORE: Buddhas & Boats on Inle Lake

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Where in the World is the WIT Agent? — Three Gorges, China

This week Pam is taking a cruise with Viking River Cruises, through the Three Gorges. Today, she will spend the morning in the Xiling Gorge, the longest of the three. After lunch, she will disembark with her group at the Three Gorges Dam. Tomorrow, she will sail through the Wu and Qutang Gorges and the Lesser Three Gorges.

The Yangtze Gorges is a scenic region of the Yangtze River, covering about 120 kilometers (75 mi). As the largest river in China and the third largest in the world, the Yangtze is the subject of much Chinese folklore and artistic tradition. It originates all the way from Tibetan glaciers in Qinghai province and pours into the East China Sea at Shanghai. River cruises are quite popular among tourists, and include majestic views, historical relics, Fengdu Ghost City, the hanging coffins of the Ba people, the unique buildings of Shibaozhai, and many more sights. It is also the home of many minorities, subcultures, the Chinese alligator and the Yangtze sturgeon. And the Three Gorges Dam, located in Hubei province on the Yangtze, is the largest hydroelectric power station in the world. The Yangtze River and her Gorges are definitely not to be missed on any traveler’s itinerary.

photo by HBarrison

To book a Viking River Cruise with us, call Willamette International Travel at 503.224.0180 or email info@wittravel.com.

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Filed under Asia, China, Viking Cruises, Where in the World is the WIT Agent?