For travellers looking to explore South East Asia during the 2020-2021 season, whether sailing along the historic Mekong River as it meanders through Vietnam and Cambodia or on Myanmar’s culturally-rich Irrawaddy River, Scenic Luxury Cruises & Tours is again rewarding early bookers.
Booking by July 10, 2019 means first choice on 2020-2021 departure dates and suite categories as well as $495 premium economy airfare or free economy flights on Mekong River departures of 13 days or longer and free economy flights on 13-day or longer Irrawaddy River cruises. Booking the company’s 11-day sailings on either river means $1,000 per couple off the fare. And those guests who place a deposit on any SE Asia cruise at the time of the booking, receive an additional $500 per couple in savings. These offers are good until July 10, 2019 or when the sailing is sold out. Guests and travel agents should quote code SEA2020PRE. Additional details can be found in the online brochure.
The itineraries, ranging from 11 to 31 days, include the usual sites of floating canal villages, verdant paddy fields, ancient temples and bustling markets, but also step away into some of the more unique and immersive opportunities. On the Mekong, guests can choose to try multiple forms of transport including bicycles, ox carts, Tuk Tuks, long tail boats, speed boats and sampans; learn the art of Vietnamese and Cambodian cooking; visit a family-operated fish farm; meet with survivors of the Khmer Rouge; and enjoy lunch at a local NGO restaurant that teaches local street kids hospitality skills. Along the Irrawaddy, guests spend time with locals on the ‘Circle’ train that travels around Yangon; cook regional cuisine after exploring Pindaya Caves; mingle with local pilgrims at Tant Kyi Taung, a hilltop pagoda with stunning views; and learn about life at home with a visit to a local family for lunch at Inle Lake.
Scenic Enrich are exclusive-to-Scenic excursions and truly make every journey special and memorable. These opportunities are included on every itinerary. Examples include, in Cambodia, a magical themed gala dinner at Angkor’s Kravan Temple, with a unique and outstanding show featuring the alluring Apsara dancers, and a Tuk Tuk City Lights tour of Phnom Penh ending with an exclusive after-hours distillery visit and tasting. In Vietnam, guests take to the streets of Ho Chi Minh on vintage Vespas to absorb some of the energy of the nightlife and enjoy an array of delicious street foods. In Myanmar, there is a magical themed dinner with a cultural show in front of the candle lit Bagan Temple ruins; an opportunity to interact with novice monks, nuns and orphans at a monastic-supported school; and learning how to produce gold leaf at a workshop.
Scenic’s truly all-inclusive fares means everything except massages and the hair dresser is included: private butler service, unlimited complimentary beverages, gratuities, transfers, cultural entertainment, regional cuisine as well as Western dining in customized settings: poolside to cabin, al fresco to fine dining. And Scenic Freechoice activities help create remarkable memories from the regions’ kaleidoscope of customs and cuisine.
Scenic designs and builds their SE Asia luxury river ships to meet European safety standards. The 68-guest Scenic Spirit on the Mekong and the 44-guest Scenic Aura for the Irrawaddy include key features such as marine paneling so noises do not penetrate to adjoining suites, compartmentalized fire zones, and custom built-in sprinkler systems throughout all public and private spaces. Accommodations onboard are all suites with walk out balconies (no porthole cabins) and are the most spacious and luxurious in SE Asia, offering sizes of up to 861 ft² on the Mekong and 735 ft² on the Irrawaddy. Guests enjoy pillow menus, scenic slumber beds, separate living and bedroom and bathrooms, and walk in wardrobes. Public areas include a pool, open air cinema, sun decks, spa, fitness room, sauna and steam room (Spirit), elevator (Spirit) and multiple dining options. Guests are also able to take in a stunning visual display of some of the most popular local artists of recent times, with a gallery of original artworks adorning the walls and hallways of both ships.
Scenic Luxury Cruises & Tours has grown over its 33-year history to include award-winning, all-inclusive escorted tours that take participants to many of the world’s most fascinating destinations and, since 2008, truly all-inclusive, five-star river cruises in Europe, SE Asia, Russia and Egypt on its 15 Space-Ships. In 2019, Scenic is introducing the world’s first Discovery Yacht, the 228-guest Scenic Eclipse.