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Pandaw Cruises

57 Reviews
Kindat Pandaw

About Pandaw Cruises

Pandaw spearheaded small ship cruising in Asian destinations and one of the only lines offering sailings in remote areas, such as the Upper Chindwin in Myanmar (Burma) and the Upper Mekong in Laos. The line's river vessels replicate the traditional brass and teak ships of the old Irrawaddy Flotilla Company. The line is known for its "go with the flow" vibe.

  • More about Pandaw River Cruises

  • Who goes on Pandaw cruise ships?

  • Do I have to dress up on a Pandaw cruise?


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Pandaw Cruises


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Pandaw Cruises Tips, Activities, and Overview

Who goes on Pandaw cruise ships?

Pandaw primarily attracts mature and well-traveled people, all sharing a sense of adventure. Most are from the U.S., U.K., Australia and mainland Europe, and friendships develop quickly over shared experiences and the ships' intimate atmosphere.

Do I have to dress up on a Pandaw cruise?

No. The atmosphere is informal and relaxed, and the main requirement is for passengers to dress for comfort. Most people change for dinner, but again the emphasis is on casual rather than chic attire. Layers and long sleeves are needed to sit out on the deck at night.

Is everything free on Pandaw cruises?

Almost. Pandaw offers a mostly inclusive experience -- all bottled water, soft drinks, juices, tea, coffee and locally produced beer and spirits are included. Daily shore excursions (followed by a complimentary shoe cleaning service) and all meals are included in the cruise fares, as well. Wines and imported spirits are available at an additional cost. Tips are also extra.

What are Pandaw’s most popular activities?

From its earliest days, the Pandaw concept has been deeply rooted in discovering local culture and history. Among the most popular activities are the daily briefings, countryside walks, jungle speedboat and ox cart rides, and cultural performances. Onboard cooking demonstrations usually draw an audience but, generally speaking, most passengers prefer to spend their time sitting outside, on the promenade decks relaxing and socializing.

Why go with Pandaw?

  • Ships offer promenade decks with panoramic views.
  • Itineraries feature remote, hard-to-reach destinations.
  • Fares include daily shore excursions.
  • Complimentary (most) beverages, local beer, spirits.

Best for: Adventurous, active travelers interested in exploring remote places

Not for: Big-ship cruisers for whom the ship is the main draw, and anyone with mobility issues

Pandaw River Cruises Cruiser Reviews

Mekong Laos

It was the service on board that exceeded all my expectations, not only first class but also personalised and friendly, with a smile.It only had 10 cabins and all were air conditioned and was thus small enough to get to know all the people on board, but large enough to isolate oneself when one wanted to.Read More

oneFirst Time Cruiser

Age 69s

Appalling Pandaw Experience

Pandaw after all only had been operating this journey for three months - and even though only the first two out of 12 trips had succeeded in completing, miracles do supposedly happen on the Ganges so maybe they didn't like to spoil our holiday plans by giving us any advance warning of the possibility of change.And despite having missed about 500 km of a 1200 km river trip, over 40% of the river journey and almost 30% of time living on the boat; and despite the alternative arrangements in no way making up for the losses; and despite missing out on six significant excursions we especially wanted to experience - how foolish to think Pandaw would offer any compensation for loss of value or loss of enjoyment.Read More

couple2-5 Cruises

Age 70s

Fascinating, if at times fraught, cruise through over 2000 years of history.

We knew that the ship would actually be run by an Indian management company but the standards were as good as other Pandaw cruises: a lovely boat, replica of the 19th century river boats of Asia, excellent Indian food, friendly and highly competent staff.And the water level fell too low, so we were stuck on a sandbank for 40 hours and then could make no progress beyond Patna because, with the low water level, pontoon bridges had been slung across the river, too low for us to pass under.Read More

couple2-5 Cruises

Age 70s

PANDAW Kolkata to Varanasi

All 19 pax were return custom & we departed in KATHA PANDAW on one engine which precluded us transitting the Farraka lock 11 Dec so we transferred to the KALAW PANDAW 10 Dec to continue.The ship went aground on the afternoon of 14 Dec & remained stranded for 42 1/4 hrs until freed by a tug 16 Dec so nearly two days were lost never to be retrieved.Read More
Mick Storrs

many10+ Cruises

Age 70s

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