Recapping our Viking River Cruise through Myanmar

Myanmar: a country without equal. Photo © 2015 Aaron Saunders

Myanmar: a country without equal. Photo © 2015 Aaron Saunders

When I first planned my trip aboard Viking River CruisesViking Mandalay as part of Viking’s 15-day Myanmar Explorer river cruise tour itinerary, I didn’t know what to expect. I’d sailed with Viking numerous times in Europe, covering the Danube, the Rhine, France’s Bordeaux region and Portugal’s Douro river. I admire their product in Europe for how consistently good it is, from start to finish, across all aspects. Service is exemplary. Food is above-average. Tours offered are well-planned, and the Viking Longship river cruise vessels are some of the most beautiful afloat.

The fact remains that Viking also offers an exceptional lineup of exotic river cruises throughout China and Southeast Asia, including the Mekong through Vietnam and Cambodia; and Myanmar along the Irrawaddy River.

Another Pandaw river cruise ship passes us - at a very photographic moment! Photo © 2015 Aaron Saunders

Cruising the Irrawaddy just outside of Bagan, Myanmar. Photo © 2015 Aaron Saunders

Viking has a more mature Asian river cruise lineup than many of their competitors, yet these voyages are barely written about. Little information exists on them online or in print, which is a shame, because as I discovered, Viking’s southeast Asian itineraries can more than hold their own.

Our full Live Voyage Report through Myanmar:

Overall, I thought this was one of the most amazing river cruise journeys I’ve ever taken. It’s not for the faint of heart, though: if you have any sort of illness or mobility issues, you’ll want to take a pass on this one. Medical care in Myanmar is not up to Western standards, and medical evacuation can be prohibitively expensive.

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Our Live Voyage Report from Viking River Cruises’ Myanmar Explorer has sadly come to a close, but stay tuned for a and a deck-by-deck photo tour of the Viking Mandalay! Be sure to follow along with our adventures on Twitter @deckchairblog.


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