The Chidwin - Explore off the Beaten Track 2


The loveliest of rivers. In the past we only offered this during the monsoon due to water levels, but now our ultra-low draught Pandaws can sail through to February. The river carves it way through mountains and forests and we stop at delightful unspoilt little towns. Our objective, Homalin is the capital of Nagaland and close to the India border. We will ply the Upper Chindwin weekly between Monywa and Homalin. Monywa is under three hours from Mandalay and the car transfer is included with the cruise. Homalin is now connected by scheduled flight with Mandalay.


Day 1

  • Today, you will be met between 08.00 am - 08.30 am and transferred to the pier in Monywa.

  • Afternoon excursion to see Thandboodi Temple, Bawdhi Tahaung statue and the night market in the evening.

  • Overnight onboard.

  • From Mandalay Airport to Monywa it will take about 2.5 hours.

  • From hotel in Mandalay to Monywa it will take about 3 hours.



Day 2

  • Morning Excursion by coach to Phowin Taung Hill, where we visit the Phowin Taung Caves with beautiful mural paintings and Buddha statues dating back to the 14th and 18th centuries.

  • In the afternoon, we visit the Kyauk Ka Village famous for the making of black Lacquer.

  • Overnight onboard.


Day 3

  • The river narrows and the forested hills fall away to farmland.

  • Enjoy a morning culinary demonstration by our head chef on how to prepare a traditional Burmese Ginger Salad.

  • Arrive in Kanee and take an afternoon walking tour of the village.

  • Overnight onboard.


Day 4

  • Morning cruise up river.

  • After lunch, we explore Mingkin, rediscovered by Paul Strachan in 1987 and described in some detail in his book Mandalay: Travels from the Golden City. It remains for Paul the most art historically interesting site in Myanmar (more so than the now spoilt Pagan) with its Konbaung court style teak monasteries sumptuously decorated. Mingkin may be described as the Luang Prabang of the Chindwin.

  • Overnight onboard.


Day 5

  • Morning walking tour of Minkin followed by cruise to Kalewa located at the confluence of the Chindwin and the Myittha Rivers, where we enjoy a walking tour.

  • Overnight onboard.


Day 6

  • Morning visit to Masein Village and then sail to Mawlaik, the town that replaced Kindat as the administrative capital but ironically the Myanma refused to move there from upstream Kindat. It was mainly settled with the company houses of the by the Scottish owned and run Bombay Myanmarh Trading Corporation in the 1920s and 1930s. There are many splendid ‘Dak Bungalows’ set around a verdant golf course. Mawlaik and the other towns of the Upper Chindwin can only be reached by boat so cars are few. There is a dreamy otherworldly quality to such places and truly one feels that one has travelled there in the Pandaw time machine!

  • Overnight onboard.


Day 7

  • Morning excursion by Tuk Tuk or coach to bus to view the Teak wood Forest outside Mawlaik.

  • Continue to the Pyar Swe Elephant Camp, a working camp where the elephants are protected in natural surroundings. We then sail to Kalewa where we overnight.


Day 8

  • Disembark at Kalewa IWT Jetty and explore Kalewa with its markets and quaint wooden architecture.

  • Continue to Kalay Airport for your onward flight to Yangon or Mandalay (included in the price of this cruise).


Main Deck From R 42 455.00

per person sharing

Upper Deck From R 53 946.00

per person sharing

8 Days / 7 Nights

Validity: December 2020 - February 2021


  • One way domestic flight

  • Entrance fees

  • Guide service (English)

  • Gratuities to crew

  • Main meals

  • Local mineral water

  • Jugged coffee, teas and tisanes


  • International flights

  • Port dues (if levied)

  • Laundry

  • All Visa costs

  • Fuel surcharges (see terms and conditions)

  • All beverages except local mineral water, jugged coffee, teas and tisanes

  • Tips to tour guides, local guides, bus drivers, boat operators and cyclo drivers

Surcharges apply for high season or late bookings. Prices are in ZAR, subject to availability & tax fluctuations.

+27 (010) 035 5205

1st Floor, 65 Knoppiesdoring St, Randpark Ridge, Johannesburg, 2156

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