Scenic’s new 2018-2019 SE Asia brochure offers details on the company’s varied cruises and land-based add-ons. Sailing along the historic Mekong River through Vietnam and Cambodia or on Myanmar’s Irrawaddy River is a bucket list trip for many travelers, and the company’s two luxury Space Ships – Scenic Spirit and Scenic Aura – often book up well in advance. Booking early (deadlines: USA-Feb. 28, 2018; CAN-Dec. 31, 2017) allows guests to save up to $1,000 per couple or enjoy free flights. Scenic is also introducing a new itinerary – the “Luxury Mekong and Temples Discovery” cruise and tour and four new land-based add-on itineraries.
Southeast Asia itineraries range from 11 to 31 days. The new 11-day “Luxury Mekong and Temples Discovery” takes guests on a seven-night cruise along the Mekong, taking in the history and culture of two very different countries – Vietnam and Cambodia. Along the delta between Ho Chi Minh City and Siem Reap, guests will explore floating canal villages and islands and take in the landscape of paddy fields and tropical forests. Three nights are spent in the city of Siem Reap, where guests tour the 12th-century World Heritage-listed temple complex Angkor Wat. This is also the location of a Scenic Enrich exclusive event, a themed gala dinner at Kravan Temple, with a show featuring the alluring Apsara dancers.
Longer Mekong sailings are also available as well as a 27-day adventure that combines the best of the shorter Mekong routes with Laos and additional experiences like a private tour of the secret Cu Chi Tunnels; a meeting with dedicated nuns at Hue’s Duc Son Pagoda, where they teach and train orphaned children; and an intimate visit to the family home of a former merchant in the World Heritage-listed city of Hoi An.
Traveling down the Irrawaddy through Myanmar, guests on the 11-, 14-, and 18-day itineraries are exposed to a cultural tapestry, threaded by more than 130 ethnic tribes, backdrops that ascend from tropical rainforests to snow-capped highlands – all fronted by stilted bamboo houses, Buddhist stupas and bustling markets built on ancient cobblestones.
Four land-based add-ons offer guests additional exposure to the region. “Sapa” is a four- or five-day exploration of Hanoi, Lao Cai and Sapa; “Mai Chau Eco Lodge” combines Hanoi with a two-night stay in the lodge; “Veteran’s Legacy” takes guests from Hanoi to two places familiar to veterans of the war – Vung Tau and Nui Dat; and “Beach Retreats” has three possibilities, all four days in length: Danang and Nha Trang, Nha Trang by itself, and Ho Chi Minh and Long Hai.
The 66-guest Scenic Spirit, provides an intimate boutique cruising experience with the largest suites available on the Mekong River with sizes up to 861 ft² (80m2). The 44-guest Scenic Aura is purpose-built for the Irrawaddy and offers the largest suites on the Irrawaddy at sizes up to 735 ft² (68m2). Scenic 5-star Space-Ships feature all-inclusive luxury: private butler service, unlimited complimentary beverages, included gratuities, cultural entertainment and regional cuisine as well as Western dining in customized settings: poolside to cabin, al fresco to fine dining. And Scenic Enrich immersion events and Freechoice activities help create memories from the regions’ kaleidoscope of customs and cuisine.