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HALONG BAY AND RED RIVER

TREVOR & JAN GREENWOOD, AUSTRALIA, HALONG BAY & THE RED RIVER, AUG 2016

Dear Paul,

We have just completed our third Pandaw cruise (Hanoi/Red River), and already thinking of the next destination.

Our boat “Angkor Pandaw” was looking very trim and presentable. Our cabin (201) very comfortable, and kept that way by the care and attention of the cabin attendant on a daily basis. He often found little ways to provide those extra touches which add to the enjoyment of the cruise.

All staff were attentive, and clearly well skilled in their various activities. Friendly, without being too familiar. The dining salon was immaculate and served up delicious and varied dishes of both eastern and western varieties. Particular attention was paid to my wife’s vegetarian diet which was pleasing. We would rate dining salon staff, and chefs, first class.

Our two independent guides, Mr Vu, and Mr Duoc, did an excellent job in providing commentary and leading the group on the various excursions. It’s fair to say that in comparison with other Mekong, and Myanmar cruises, the Hanoi/Red River cruise doesn’t always compare scenically, but it is still a very worthwhile and enjoyable cruise. When shore excursions not available, other on-board entertainments were organised. One particular shore excursion was a visit to hear the Hat Xoan singing and dancing at Hung Lo temple (Viet Tri). My wife and I are former Australian diplomats who have worked and lived in Vietnam. It is fair to say that this performance is one of the most impressive we have seen over the years. Not only is it highly entertaining, but of great cultural significance, both to visiting tourists, as well as to the Vietnamese themselves. Please continue to support this activity, it is very important. Another good show was the water puppets at Thanh Ha. Comparable with those staged in Hanoi, and in a natural, authentic setting.

All boat and vehicle transfers well organised using safe and efficient boats and vehicles.

The farewell by all crew members enjoyable and memorable. Many passengers joined in the singing and dancing.

Paul, again Pandaw has done us proud. More travel already scheduled fore 2016, but already thinking Pandaw for 2017. Perhaps Borneo (we know Kuching having lived in Malaysia for five years), or, maybe the Ganges. Have visited India (including Palace on Wheels) a couple of times, but seen from the deck of a boat will bring a new perspective. Who knows?

We wish you and all at Pandaw every future success. Wish you could find rivers navigable enough to float a boat in Sri Lanka, another of our favourite destinations. In the meantime stay safe, well and happy.

Trevor and Jan Greenwood
Australia

 

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HALONG BAY AND RED RIVER

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