We have done two previous river cruises: The Mekong and The Douro. This river cruise along the Ayeyarwady (Irrawaddy to visitors) from Mandalay to Yangon (formerly Rangoon) far exceeded our expectations; there were WOW moments every day and the Burmese people could not have been more friendly. Myanmar is a photographer’s dream. I have never taken so many photos of people whilst on holiday; the locals willingly let you take photos of them (we always asked permission first) and I returned home with many wonderful photos not only of the people but their country as well.
The Princess Panhwar is used by Travelmarvel and is reasonably new. Travelmarvel organised our flights and transfers and all these arrangements went very well. There were 65 guests on our cruise out of a maximum of 72. We were split up into three groups and the tour guides alternated amongst the groups so we got to know all three of them.
We had a cabin with a French balcony with doors that opened to allow in fresh air and a mosquito screen to cover the opening if required. The room was large with plenty of storage. There was a large shower with L’Occitane toiletries, storage under the sink and a magnifying mirror as well as a large mirror over the sink. There is an open sundeck with plenty of shade, an air conditioned lounge and a large restaurant where all meals are taken. The food was excellent with plenty of choice and presentation of the meals was first class. Our 14 night cruise covered the Christmas holiday (but not New Year) and the ship had been decorated accordingly and we had a Christmas meal on Christmas Eve and a visit from Santa (with presents!). A local choir came on board to entertain us.
In main review.