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Pandaw II was our first ever new build back in 2001. Though our oldest ship she is still young in river terms - her prototype the old Pandaw is now over sixty years old and many ships in this fresh water environment are at least 100 years old. She was built in Rangoon at the Dawbone dockyard, then belonging to the Marine Department. In those days there was no electricity and numerous generators surrounded the growing hull powering the welder's torches. Timber mills were rare too and great tree trunks would be delivered to the dockside and be cut into planks on the spot. The result was magnificent and still is.
Pandaw II remains the stately queen of our fleet, if not the river. This is the one ship that has not been fully refitted, partly because the crew have treated her with such love and care that she does not need a refit and partly because she is something of a cult ship with a considerable following and we want to preserve the original Pandaw cabin with their real ship's berths and the old door and window arrangement rather than the French windows of our other P class ships.
The ship has quality mountain bikes for your independent exploration.
The Pandaw dining rooms are designed to open up along the sides to allow cool breezes to waft through. Only at night we do close them up and turn on the air-conditioning. We know our passengers prefer fresh air to chilled air. The new Katha Pandaw, designed in response to feedback from our passengers, has no formal dining room but rather an open air dining space on deck.
At Pandaw we pride ourselves on offering a great choice of local cuisine and exotic foods. We source supplies and ingredients as locally as possible, always in accordance with strictly-monitored environmental health standards.
Breakfast is a buffet, while lunch features a buffet, plus soup, salad and a desert table, with the main course served at the table. Dinner is by waiter-service at the table.
We are happy to cater for individual dietary preferences. Passengers who prefer not to be served hot or spicy foods are offered delicious European-style alternatives and vegetarians are especially well catered for. Other special diets may be accommodated, by prior arrangement. Our chefs know that most passengers want to sample versions of the best, most characteristic dishes of each country they pass through.
When moored you are welcome to come and go from the ship as much as you like. Our next sailing time will be advised on the Daily Schedule and passengers are requested to note this before disembarkation. Group shore excursions are organised by the Purser and you will be accompanied by a member of the ship's company. Details of these are posted on the Daily Schedule. Fifteen minutes prior to casting off the captain will sound the ship's horn to warn you to return to the ship. Passengers should hang their keys on the key board hanging adjacent to the gang plank when disembarking so that we know if anyone has not returned. If you go ashore with your cabin keys and we leave without you we can not be held responsible for this. We will attempt to devise on shore time in the cool of the early morning or late afternoon
From its earliest days, the Pandaw concept has been deeply rooted in cultural and historical expertise, worn lightly. On any Pandaw river expedition, daily briefings are hosted by your purser and guide, which provide a forum to discuss the day's events and plans.
Most sailings will feature at least one cultural performance: in Burma it is the marionette theatre; in Cambodia the Royal Khmer Ballet; in Laos villagers perform a dance on deck.
We also offer a range of onboard activities including: cooking demonstrations, fruit carving, napkin tying and a tour of the working ship.
Themed movie nights are also popular - the film Indochine in Vietnam, The Killing Fields in Cambodia and The Lady in Burma are some of the favourites.
There are no dedicated health and fitness facilities on board.
Contrary to some perceptions, Pandaw river expeditions are not just for the more mature. They offer brilliant educational experiences for younger people. Given that all our sailing areas are very safe and secure and the local people are friendly, these sailings provide a great way for your kids to interact with locals and learn about different cultures.
Gratuities to the Pandaw crew are included in the price of your ticket. Kindly note that gratuities to local guides are not included and are completely at your discretion.
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