Vietnam’s beauty, whether the majestic limestone pinnacles of Halong Bay or the grace and elegance of the aodai, is haunting. Its cities – Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City – bear the hallmarks of French colonial splendour. The Mekong Delta inspires images of lush green vegetation and productivity, images of traditional Vietnamese floating markets. In the north and inland, there are tribal areas bursting with ethnic diversity and colour. The coast is home to a fascinating collection of sites which include Khmer temples, beautifully preserved old Chinese towns and, for those seeking relaxation, beautiful beaches.
The mighty MekongRiver has long been the lifeblood for the people of Vietnam & Cambodia, and now it is becoming increasingly popular as the new river cruise destination in the Far East. From floating markets to off the beaten track ancient temples, there is a wealth of sights to see in the lower Mekong region.
The Jahan joins it’s sister ship the famous Jayavarman as the top two vessels on the Mekong. It brings the singular touches of a luxury boutique hotel together with the leisurely pace of a river cruise and the opportunity to collect new experiences along the mighty Mekong. The 26 carefully designed staterooms and suites with floor to ceiling windows and sliding doors that open onto a private balcony offer privacy and uncompromised luxury.
The concept of The Jahan is inspired by Shah Jahan, the Mughal Emperor who ruled over India in the 14th century, and is famously known for his enduring love of his wife, which saw the Taj Mahal being created. Like Taj Mahal, no detail on The Jahan has been overlooked, with cabin design maximised for both style and comfort. You could truly say The Jahan was made with love. One of the highlights of The Jahan is that all accommodations feature floor to ceiling sliding doors that open on to a large balcony, where you can relax in privacy as you enjoy the magnificent ever changing vistas of the Mekong.
A MekongRiver journey is about meeting the people and seeing how they live – as The Jahan holds a maximum of 52 passengers at any one time, shore excursions are far more intimate and authentic. One of it’s highlights is the range of shore touring options available; tours can be booked on private basis so that you can explore each destination according to your own tastes, and at your own pace. The more active can kayak the canals around Cai Be, or cycle to local villages. Whilst the more sedate may prefer to immerse themselves in a visit to the floating markets, or discover local bird life on a jeep safari.
Service on board is impeccable, but with the highest staff to passenger ratio on the Mekong, and training given both locally and in Europe you would expect nothing less! The Jahan boasts some world-class facilities; Stay fit on-board at the gym, then relax in the steam room/sauna, or practise Tai Chi which is offered each morning on deck. The small pool is ideal for cooling off after a days sightseeing, or perhaps indulge in the spa. The lounge area features movies and lectures to keep you informed and entertained, and the observatory has unsurpassed views on all sides.
As the day closes feast on the exquisite range of local and international dishes in the restaurant, then retire to the lounge with large comfortable sofas and a library, or continue your evening discussing the excitement of the day in the exquisite bar.
Vietnam’s natural beauty, contagious energy and unforgettable cuisine make it a diverse and exciting travel destination, but it is the unfailingly friendly people that make Vietnam a place to return to time and time again.