Overview

Day 1 - Flight
Day 2 - Chiang Rai 
Day 3 - Chiang Saen 
Day 4 - Cruising the Mekong 
Day 5 - Pak Beng
Days 6 & 7 - Luang Prabang 
Day 8 - Kuangsi
Days 9 - Xayaburi Dam 
Day 10 - Ban Pak Huoang/Pak Sao 
Days 11 & 12 - Vientiane 
Day 13 - Bangkok 
Day 14 - Return Flight

Mekong Explorer

Pandaw cruises exclusive to Jules Verne from Thailand’s Golden Triangle along the ‘Mother of all Waters’ and through Laos, the ‘earthly paradise of South East Asia’

This unique arrangement offers insight into this little-known corner of Indochina, linked by the thread of one of the world’s great rivers, the Mekong, focusing on the more northerly, dramatic riverscapes where fewer and smaller cruise ships operate. From northern Thailand cruise into Laos to Luang Prabang, favourite riverside town of many.

Only recently navigable for cruisers, it is a road less travelled through timeless landscapes and traditional lifestyles, to remote and simple villages, some accessed only by boat; into the small town of Pak Beng and past the Pak Ou riverside caves, with their thousands of Buddha statues; before turning south to the old royal capital of Laos, the lovely Luang Prabang.

In Laos everything is on a smaller, personal scale. Local colour can equate to ‘tourist shows’ in some countries, but here it is the Tagbat: 2,000 monks walking around the old royal capital of Luang Prabang at 6am in a ceremony embraced by local people, who turn out daily to give food. You will wonder at the impressive temples and palaces but the gentle people and beautiful scenery stay longer in the memory.

Key Features

Culture & Riverscapes
Exclusive
Small Ship Cruise
Excursions Included
Most Drinks Included
Free Cabin Selection
UNESCO: Luang Prabang
Guaranteed Departure 
Group Size: 2 – 28

 

Special Events

Baci Ceremony & Private Ballet

Enjoy two special events in Luang Prabang: A traditional Baci ceremony unique to Laos, with a shaman, a group of elders and traditional musicians; a private royal ballet performance at the Royal Palace in Luang Prabang.

Day 1 Fly overnight from London Heathrow to Chiang Rai via Bangkok.

Day 2 Transfer to the 4-star Legend Chiang Rai Hotel for an overnight stay. Visit the memorial of King Mengai who founded the Lanna Thau kingdom, Wat Huay Pla Kang with its amazing pagoda and the modern Rong Kun Temple built in 1997.

Day 3 In the Golden Triangle area, visit the Hall of Opium museum, sponsored by the royal family of Thailand giving an insight on the history and politics of the opium trade and its health effects. Embark on the vessel for ten nights. Cruise towards the Burmese border for sunset. (B, L, D)

Day 4 Sail downstream on the beautiful Upper Mekong across the border into Laos. After lunch, visit a Laos jungle village on foot. (B, L, D)

Day 5 Walking tour of Khamo village. Continue sailing downsteram and enjoy cocktails on a sandbank. (B, L, D)

Day 6 Cruise to Pak Ou to visit the Buddhist caves by local boat. Arrive in Luang Prabang, confluence of the Nam Khan and Mekong rivers. Traditional dance performance on board. Time to visit the night market. (B, L, D)

Day 7 Visit the temples, Royal Palace and National Museum. Free time to walk around. Baci ceremony and private ballet. (B, L, D)

Day 8 Early morning, witness monks during their ritual of Tagbat, an alms giving ceremony. Visit Kuangsi waterfalls, teak forest trails and butterfly farm. Cooking demonstration. (B, L, D)

Day 9 Pass through the lock at Xayaburi Hydro Electric Power Plant. Visit a Laos village. (B, L, D)

Day 10 Morning visit to Ban Pha Leab with its beautiful limestone mountain. Visit Ban Pak Huoang village on the Thai border. At Pak Sao visit a plantation village and meet local people. (B, L, D)

Day 11 Cruise through dramatic landscapes of jungle, mountains and amazing rock formations as you enter the cultivated plains of Vientiane, Laos' largest town and capital since 1563. Free time to explore Vientiane, a French influenced city. (B, L, D)

Day 12 In Vientiane, visit Sisaket Temple, the President's Hall, Wat Prakeo Temple and Phatouxay monument. Farewell cocktails and dinner. (B, L, D)

Day 13 Disembark and fly to Bangkok, city of gilded temples and modern towers. Overnight at the 5-star Amari Watergate Hotel. (B)

Day 14 Return flight to London. (B)

  • Key
  • B - Breakfast
  • L - Lunch
  • D - Dinner
 

Notes

The cruise itinerary may vary according to local conditions, navigational factors and water levels.

On occasion the private ballet may take place on Day 6.

 

2019

per person in a twin room/Main Deck cabin
RV Champa Pandaw
Thai Airways from Heathrow

Date Price
October 16 £3895

2020

per person in a twin room/Main Deck cabin
RV Laos Pandaw
Thai Airways from Heathrow

Date Price
January 19 £3995

Supplements per person

Single Supplement

Single supplement £1195

Cabin Upgrades

Upper Deck (RV Champa) £595

Flight Options

London/Bangkok/London
Thai Airways Royal Silk Class from £1915

Extension Options

Extra nights - Bangkok
Amari Watergate (per night) £85
Single supplement £59
Bangkok departure transfer £25

Legend Chiang Rai (per night) £50
Single supplement £40

Extension - Hua Hin
Centara Hua Hin (4 nights) £645 (Oct £495)
Single supplement £495 (Oct £295)

Independent Arrival

Save £850
Arrival transfer add £10
Departure transfer add £25

Price Includes
Air travel and taxes, all port charges, transfers, 10-night cruise, 2 nights' hotel, breakfast daily, full board and most drinks on cruise, excursions, local guides and representatives. If our specially negotiated airfares are unavailable at the time of booking, a supplement may apply.

Not Included
Travel insurance, visa procurement, optional excursions, tipping, any government taxes or compulsory charges introduced after publication.

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Mekong Explorer

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