Pandaw to introduce Ganges cruise in 2015

Pandaw River Expeditions is introducing a new river cruise for 2015 on India’s Ganges and Hooghly rivers on the 40-passenger Rajmahal.

The 16-day itinerary will begin with a three-night land tour from Varanasi to Patna. Passengers will embark the Rajmahal in Patna on day four of the itinerary and sail toward Kolkata. A detailed itinerary can be found here. There is one Pandaw departure of this cruise scheduled for Oct. 27.

The Rajmahal was built in Kolkata in 2013 and features climate-controlled staterooms with en suite bathrooms as well as in-room refrigerators and coffee and tea makers. The onboard restaurant will serve Western and Indian cuisines. There is also a spa on the main deck, a sun deck with open and shaded lounge chairs and a small library and saloon.

The cruise price includes an airport transfer in Varanasi, all meals during the cruise, excursions, port fees and government taxes, porterage, English-speaking tour guides, drip coffee and tea, bottled water, a cruise director and crew gratuities. It excludes laundry, visas, drinks, fuel surcharges and gratuities for local guides and drivers.

Pandaw River Expeditions' 40-passenger Rajmahal will sail a 16-day itinerary on India’s Ganges and Hooghly rivers.
Pandaw River Expeditions’ 40-passenger Rajmahal will sail a 16-day itinerary on India’s Ganges and Hooghly rivers.

Pandaw river ship sinks

By Michelle Baran

Pandaw River Expeditions’ Saigon Pandaw sank last week while being towed, a representative of Pandaw confirmed.

The 60-passenger Saigon Pandaw launched in 2012 and was sailing the Mekong River in Vietnam and Cambodia. It was being repositioned to Myanmar when it sank.

Pandaw said that the company is still investigating the cause, but that early reports indicate that strong winds were to blame. There were no deaths or injuries, as the vessel was being towed as cargo without any crew onboard.

For the remainder of the season, Pandaw is going to deploy the 10-passenger Kalay Pandaw in Myanmar, a vessel that launched in 2013.

Pandaw has two additional 40-passenger river cruise vessels launching in Myanmar in July, the Kindat Pandaw and the Kalaw Pandaw, on which the company plans to accommodate passengers affected by the loss of the Saigon Pandaw.

“Our reservation and sales team is working to shift all bookings and if necessary to offer alternatives,” the company said.

Uniworld Boutique River Cruise Collection had previously chartered the Saigon Pandaw as the River Saigon, but the company now exclusively sells the 60-passenger River Orchid for Mekong cruises. The River Orchid launched last January.