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Ultimate Irrawaddy River Cruise: Yangon to Mandalay

15 Days
Prices From:
US$ 5,990

FIRST-CLASS | CRUISE: This exciting journey will visit bustling markets, witness Buddhist artefacts and sculptures, see Italian built forts and ride rikshaws. You will travel between Yangon and the enchanting city of Prome and between Mandalay and Mingun on this unforgettable cruise on the Irrawaddy River.

  • See sidebar for general info on Pandaw Cruises.

This 15-day adventure shuns the road to Mandalay and instead takes you there on one of Asia’s most famous rivers.

You’ll board the ship at Prome and make your first stop at Thiri-ya-kittiya, centre of the ancient Pyu Empire, whose descendents and language remain present in Myanmar today. You will see pagodas throughout Burma based on Pyu design. Those interested in Burma’s more recent history, particularly with the British, will find plenty to explore in Thayetmyo – including an extensive war cemetery – as well as the Minhla Forts.

Visit Sale, a town noted for its beautiful teak monasteries before reaching awe inspiring Pagan. Thousands of brick and gold stupas spread over 42 square kilometers to create one of Asia’s most beautiful sights. Needless to say, hot air balloon rides here are popular and a readily accessible option.

With a name that conjures intrigue, Mandalay is an ethnically diverse and surprisingly young city, founded only in 1857 by King Mingdon Min. The influence of British colonialism is keenly felt here, with plenty to see including the exquisite teak Shwenandaw Monastery and the Royal Palace. Nearby Amarapurra was Burma’s capital for almost a century, and allows you to see one of the country’s most splendid palaces and the U Bein Bridge, the longest teak bridge in the world.

Stop in at Mingun, home of the world’s largest bell, then enjoy a taste of Burmese life in some of the local villages until you reach the ancient city of Tagaung. You’ll visit the shrine of Bo Bo Gui – fittingly, a spirit who protects sailors on the river! Then follow in Orwell’s footsteps in Katha, setting for the author’s Burmese Days.

Your journey ends with two days spent exploring Burma’s natural delights. See the Irrawaddy’s largest gorge before venturing into the jungle, where you’ll visit a local village before returning to Mandalay for departure.


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15 Days
Prices From:
US$ 5,990

Itinerary View Trip Map

Day 1

Depart Yangon

Embark from Yangon and sail up the Yangon River. Enter the Twante Canal, which connects the Yangon River with the Irrawaddy Delta. Stop in the town of Twante and explore its historic centre. **Please note that embarkation will take place between 10:30-11:00am at Pan Soe Tan (Pan Soe Tan Saikkan, Strand Road, Yangon). The ship will depart the pier at 11:00am.

Meal Plan Lunch and Dinner
Duration14 Nights

RV Kanee Pandaw

More Info

  • starstarstarstar

    RV Kanee Pandaw

    The RV Kanee Pandaw is a fourteen cabin K-class ship, sailing since 2019. The ultra-shallow twin decked K-class vessel can go where other ships cannot and is perfect for soft adventure river expeditions.This vessel offers outdoor or indoor dining, run-round promenades and ample indoor and …

    The RV Kanee Pandaw is a fourteen cabin K-class ship, sailing since 2019. The ultra-shallow twin decked K-class vessel can go where other ships cannot and is perfect for soft adventure river expeditions.This vessel offers outdoor or indoor dining, run-round promenades and ample indoor and outdoor living space. The cabins are slightly smaller than on Pandaw’s larger ships but cleverly designed and very comfortable with roomy bathrooms.

    More Details

Day 2

Maubin and Nyaung Don

In morning, take a walk to visit Maubin's bustling market and the city surrounds. This afternoon we will continue our exploration of the Irrawaddy Delta near Nyaung Don, and witness scenes of rural life. Moor overnight at Zakagyi.

Meal Plan Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Day 3

Danabyu and Zalon

Continue exploring the creeks of the Delta and stop at Donabyu, another little known town with a busy port and bustling markets. In the First Anglo-Burmese War of 1825, the Burmese General Maha-Bandoola was defeated here, following a long and disastrous campaign by the British. This afternoon, walk in Zalon city to visit a beautiful Golden Buddha. Moor overnight at Henzada.

Meal Plan Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Day 4


Sail all day today, stopping to visit the markets and old colonial buildings in the sleepy Delta town of Manaung. From the Delta, your vessel proceeds to the Irrawaddy River.

Meal Plan Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Day 5


Early this morning, sail slowly upstream and downstream in the A Kaut Taung area to admire Buddha carvings on the mountainside. Reach Prome by the afternoon and travel by coach to the fifth century archaeological site of Thiri-ya-kittiya, the former centre of the Pyu civilization. Visit a fascinating museum showcasing early Buddhist artifacts and sculptures.

Meal Plan Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Day 6


This pleasant colonial town once guarded the border between Royal Myanmar and British Myanmar, following the Second Anglo Myanmar War of 1855. Many of the buildings, including the covered market, date from the second half of the 19th century. Thayet also boasts the oldest golf course in Myanmar, which opened in 1885. Visit the market and colonial houses, then ride by horse cart to the golf course, passing through the botanical garden.

Meal Plan Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Day 7

Minhla and Magwe

Today, visit the two Italian-built forts constructed to keep the British out of Royal Myanmar. The fight for the Minhla redoubt was the only serious action in the war and the death of a young subaltern inspired Kipling to write a poem. Take a trishaw uphill to reach the magnificent Magwe Myat-thalon Pagoda, constructed with solid gold bricks. Of interest are the many nat shrines and hermitages within the temple precincts.

Meal Plan Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Day 8


Here we visit the Yout-saun-kyaung monastery with its spectacular wood carvings; we also explore an area of splendid colonial-style houses and continue sailing upstream.

Meal Plan Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Day 9


In the morning, moor at Tan-Chi-Taung mountain and ascend the mountain by WW2 jeep. Continue onwards to Bagan, one of the richest archeological sites in the world and undoubtedly the highlight of a journey through Myanmar. This afternoon, tour a selection of the World Heritage monuments and temples.

Meal Plan Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Day 10


This morning, explore more of Bagan's fascinating monuments by coach, then visit a lacquerware workshop and the local markets. At noon, sail upstream. Take an evening walk in Oh Ne Kyaung village and enjoy witnessing the local life of this typical riverside community.

Meal Plan Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Day 11


This small rural village specializes in pot making. We will also visit a local school.

Meal Plan Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Day 12

Mandalay, Sagaing and Amarapura

Guests will take a tour of central Mandalay visiting the Mahamuni Pagoda and Shwe Nan Daw Kyaung teak carved monastery. In the afternoon we visit Sagaing. The true delight of Sagaing lies in its 1000 hermitages and sanctuaries, rich in woodcarving and religious art. Next we explore the ancient capital of Amarapura by coach, take a boat ride along Taungthaman lake and watch the tranquillity and serenity of this beautiful lake and its famous U-Bein Bridge at sunset.

Meal Plan Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Day 13


Today we will stop in Mingun, known for its large unfinished pagoda as well as for the world's largest un-cracked working bell. Visit the Mingun Old Persons' Home, originally established with the assistance of the Irrawaddy Flotilla Company in the 1930s.

Meal Plan Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Day 14

Kyauk Myoung

Sail upstream and visit the spectacular pottery works near Kyauk-myoung, where famous 50-gallon water pots are made. Witness all stages of manufacture from the throwing of the pots to the week-long firing in huge kilns. In the afternoon, cruise back downstream to Mandalay.

Meal Plan Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
Day 15

Disembarkation in Mandalay

After an early breakfast, disembark from your ship between 8:00am-9:00am at Sagaing Lay Kyun Man Aung Jetty, Mandalay.

Meal Plan Breakfast

Other Information

Due to political unrest in Myanmar this cruise is currently not operating.  Please speak to a Goway Destination Specialist about future departures.


2021: Nov 15, Dec 25
2022: Feb 5, Mar 3, Mar 19


  • 14 nights first-class cruise accommodation in private cabin
  • Guided group touring with English-speaking local guides as per itinerary
  • Gratuities to crew
  • Locally made soft drinks and beers, coffee, tea, mineral water
  • Applicable entrance fees
  • Port dues and taxes (if applicable)
  • Breakfast daily (excluding day 1), 14 lunches, 14 dinners


  • Travel insurance
  • International and domestic airfare & airfare taxes
  • Visa fees if applicable
  • Meals and beverages not mentioned
  • Optional excursions
  • Gratuities not idicated
  • Items of a personal nature


Prices are "from" per person based on twin/double share accommodation and for travel in low season. Seasonal surcharges and blackout dates may apply. Limited seat/spaces and all pricing is subject to change and availability. Rates for single or triple travellers are available on request - please enquire.

3 Mar 2022
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