Start in Hong Kong and end in Mumbai! With the ocean cruise tour Jewels of Southeast Asia, you have a 26 day tour package taking you through Hong Kong, China and 12 other destinations in Asia. Jewels of Southeast Asia includes accommodation as well as an expert guide, meals, transport and more.
In and around Ho Chi Minh CityArrive in cosmopolitan Hong Kong today and admire the forest of skyscrapers standing between soaring mountains, a bustling harbor and offshore islands. Because we are berthed overnight here, you may explore this cultural capital on your own this evening.
Spend your final morning in Hong Kong with a visit to a local institution. Witness the sights, sounds and aromas of a wet market?an outdoor market made up of various stands selling meat, seafood and fresh produce. After your tour, enjoy a dim sum and tea breakfast.
Enjoy a full day indulging in the amenities of your ship as you cruise the South China Sea. You might find your inner calm with yoga on the Sports Deck. Lounge by the Main Pool with its retractable roof and enjoy a cocktail at the Aquavit Bar. After an al fresco dinner at the World Caf?, settle in for some light jazz and a nightcap at Torshavn.
Call on Ho Chi Minh City today, formerly known as Saigon. Join an included excursion to view the Reunification Palace, the Central Post Office and Chinatown, and meet artisans at a lacquer workshop. Or you may choose to take a Vietnamese cooking class, or explore the city by pedal cab. With two nights here, you will have ample time to immerse yourself in the breathtaking beauty of the south on our optional tours or a two-day excursion.
Enjoy another day in this captivating city. You might choose to tour the fabled Mekong Delta, known to many as Vietnam?s rice bowl. This fascinating region, seemingly untouched by the passage of time, is one of the most fertile areas in the nation, with much of its abundance of fruit, vegetables and seafood sold at the many floating markets.
Beyond the French-flavored caf?s and croissants, the empire left a more lasting impression with its masterworks of 19th-century colonial architecture. Worth taking in are the Notre Dame Cathedral, built with materials imported from France; the Central Post Office, a masterpiece of Gothic, Renaissance and French styles; and the city?s opera house, built in the same year as the Petit Palais in Paris. Explore a pair of notable hotels that exude the spirit of France: the Hotel Continental, satellite bureau for some American media during the Vietnam War, and the French Riviera-style Hotel Majestic.
Enter the Gulf of Thailand, the former Gulf of Siam. Long an important waterway for traders and merchants, it has helped shape the economies of Southeast Asia and the Malay Peninsula for centuries. As you cruise, you might enjoy the views from your stateroom?s veranda or from the Infinity Pool. This evening, attend a port talk about your upcoming destinations and enjoy a star-filled night sky.
Call on Cambodia?s coastal town of Sihanoukville, surrounded by stunning sand beaches and turquoise waters. Here, New Khmer architecture overlooks the comings and goings of modern tuk-tuks, carriages drawn by motorcycles. Visit Wat Krom with its colorful murals and Buddha sculptures, stroll Independence Beach, and explore a local market and fishing village. Or, enjoy a day of kayaking in Cambodia?s Ream National Park, a beautiful nature preserve that is a bird watcher?s paradise.
In and around BangkokExperience another day amid the splendor of Bangkok and explore more of this magnificent capital on your own. Perhaps head out to marvel at the temples and elegant buildings of the renowned Grand Palace, or take a ride in a tuk-tuk to view the city?s main sights. Your ship remains docked overnight.
Explore more of Thailand?s cultural and political capital, Bangkok. Sample the famous Thai cuisine for lunch and take in the city?s canals, bustling with traditional longboats. If you wish, visit the Dusit Palace complex and the Jim Thompson House, former home of the city?s renowned silk merchant.
Explore the Thai island of Koh Samui, a paradise of sandy beaches, coral reefs and coconut trees. Thailand?s second-largest island after Phuket, this self-sufficient community had no roadways until the early 1970s. Today, it is a favored spot for sun-loving beachcombers from Thailand and beyond. Visit the island?s revered temples and witness some of the scampering monkeys that have been trained to harvest coconuts from the treetops.
Cruise through the Gulf of Thailand today. As you do so, perhaps soothe your body with a hot sauna and a few minutes amid the gently falling snow of the Snow Grotto. This evening, enjoy cocktails in the Explorers? Lounge and a dinner of authentic Thai dishes at The Restaurant.
In and around SingaporeArrive in Singapore today. This diverse city is a melting pot of varied influences, as you can see during visits to the Colonial District, Little India, Arab Street and Chinatown on an included tour. If you like, join an optional excursion to visit Gardens by the Bay, with its futuristic Supertree Grove, and take in sweeping views of the city from atop the Marina Bay Sands SkyPark.
Take in the beautiful cityscapes of Kuala Lumpur, the lively capital of Malaysia. From your berth in Port Klang, you will journey to the city for a panoramic tour with many photo opportunities. Pass the National Museum, the huge bronze National Monument and the National Mosque of Malaysia. Stop in scenic Merdeka Square (Independence Square), the most photographed spot in the city, and view the impressive Petronas Towers, the world?s tallest building from 1998 until 2004.
Visit Malaysia?s Penang Island and its capital of George Town. The island is an incredibly diverse mix of cultural influences from all across Asia, the result of centuries of trade and immigration, complemented by generations of colonialism under the British East India Company. Recognized for its eclectic blend of architecture and culture, George Town is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Admire some of its stately neoclassical buildings, colorful Hindu temples, elegant minarets and cheerfully painted row houses.
Often called the Pearl of the Andaman Sea, the Thai island of Phuket offers picturesque beaches and sweeping vistas of sparkling azure water and emerald-green hills. Around 1545, one Portuguese explorer called the island Junk Ceylon, and the name stuck for decades; today, old Sino-Portuguese shop-houses and monuments to Buddha dot the island. You will have ample time to explore Patong, the beach resort and town on Phukets west coast.
Sail the history-rich waters of the Bay of Bengal, the largest bay in the world. Ancient Hindu calls it Mahodadhi, meaning great water receptacle. The bay is fed by the waters of the Ganges, Brahmaputra and Irrawaddy Rivers. Devout Hindus consider its waters sacred and each day perform an aarti, a religious ritual in which they place fire offerings into the surf and let the tides carry them away. Attend an enlightening talk about Southeast Asia and enjoy an evening of light music in one of our elegant venues.
Explore Chennai today, the cultural center of southern India. This fascinating coastal city is a heady blend of ancient and sacred structures, stately colonial-era buildings and churches, and modern-day sensibility. By many accounts, Chennai was founded as a British city as the fortifications of Fort St. George were built in 1650 on uninhabited land and only later surrounded by the structures of old Madras. The British remained in the fort until India?s independence in 1947. Today, the fort?s walls enclose government buildings, the historic St. Mary?s church and a museum. A highlight of Chennai is the brick-red Madras High Court, a splendid example of Indo-Saracenic architecture with Mughal touches and domed cupolas.
Cruise into the Laccadive Sea, passing by the Gulf of Mannar as you cruise toward India. The area is one of the richest marine environments in the world, harboring 3,600 species of flora and fauna. Pearl-diving is a rich tradition in these waters, and it is still practiced.
Explore the rich cultural tapestry and grand history of Cochin. This town bordering the Laccadive Sea has been a major port since 1341, when a flood created its harbor. Take a scenic guided tour around this former spice capital and see landmarks such as the fascinating Mattancherry Palace, originally built by the Portuguese as a gift to the king in 1555. Or, discover the ancient doorway to India in Paravur, a trading port on the Arabian Sea where Greeks, Romans, Jews, Chinese and Arab traders sought treasure and glory.
The Arabian Sea has been known variously as the Persian Sea and Erythraean Sea. Spices, metals, precious stones and wine have all made this crossing throughout history. Take this relaxing day at sea to unwind in The Spa?s Sauna and Snow Grotto or take a dip in the Infinity Pool.
Arrive in the state of Goa this morning, one of the richest in India. Until 1961, this was the colony of Portuguese India, which had existed for more than four centuries. Its influence remains in the city?s grand colonial architecture, some of the most impressive in all of India. See the Church of Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception in Panaji, where mass is still conducted in English, Portuguese and the local Konkani dialect. In Old Goa, admire the Basilica of Bom Jesus, the S? Cathedral and numerous Portuguese-style colonial houses.
Disembark this morning and transfer to the airport for your flight home. Or, extend your stay with a post-cruise extension package in Mumbai or India?s Golden Triangle.