Pandaw will late this year deploy the Orient Pandaw on an expedition along the Lower Ganges, its first cruise in India.
From December 23 to the end of April 2019, the Orient Pandaw will sail weekly from Kolkata to Farraka and back on a seven-night itinerary. It will re-commence the itinerary in July 2019 through to April 2020.
Starting in Kolkata, the upstream itinerary will set sail at noon, passing the old Danish colony of Serampore to Barrackpore, with sights including the Semaphore Tower, Government House, the Temple of Fame and Flagstaff House.
Guests will on day two sail up to Chandernagore, a French possession until 1950, and visit the 18th century church and Dupleix’s House of the former Governor-General of French India.
On the third day, the ship visits Kalna, where guests will be taken by rickshaws to see some of Bengal’s terracotta temples, as well as the Shiva temple with concentric rings made up of 108 lesser shrines, before continuing on to the new ISKCON (International Society for Krishna Consciousness) temple in Mayapur.
After mooring near the brass-working village of Matiari, guests will start day four with a visit a charming riverside village, where they can interact with the locals and witness the process of beating out brass water pots and other vessels. Later, they will cruise on and visit the historic battlefield of Plassey.
Day five brings guests on a morning walk to the Khushbagh, a Mughal-style garden that encloses the tombs of Siraj-ud-Daulah – the last independent Nawab of Bengal – and his family.
The next morning, guests will experience rural India with a walk through the fields of the sleepy village of Baranagar to visit its three miniature terracotta temples.
Finally, on day seven, the ship will cruise to a mooring by the Farakka lock and guests will disembark and go on a full-day excursion by road to Gaur, near the town of Malda, or English Bazar.
The Orient Pandaw features thirty veranda staterooms on two decks, indoor dining, a deck bar, a movie and lecture theatre and a spa.
Prices for The Lower Ganges itinerary start from US$1,890 per person for a twin-sharing cabin. The price includes seven nights’ accommodation aboard the Orient Pandaw, local transfers, all excursions as stated on the itinerary, entrance fees, guide services (English language), main meals, jugged coffee, selection of teas and tisanes, local soft drinks, local beer, local spirits, mineral water, crew gratuities and cycling equipment.