Avalon built this luxury 195-foot-long, 18-cabin, all-suite ship in 2018 specifically with a shallow draft for the Mekong River, and launched it last September. The air-conditioned cabins, with view-friendly floor-to-ceiling windows, feature large en-suite bathrooms and decor recalling the colonial plantation homes of Southeast Asia. During onboard mealtimes, I dig in to both freshly prepared local dishes and Western comfort food.
Each day, we disembark the ship for shore excursions that take us to destinations such as the bucket-list Angkor Wat ruins, as well as far off the typical tourist track to explore small Vietnamese and Cambodian villages where we meet with local artisans, farmers, Buddhist monks, and even giggling English-language middle-school students.
Details: From $3,519; 877-797-8791; avalonwaterways.com
WHAT TO READ NEXT