The world’s longest river cruise MV Ganga Vilas has set sail from Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh to reach Dibrugarh in eastern Assam, covering 3,200 km in 51 days. PM Narendra Modi virtually flagged off the river cruise on January 13th.
The cruise lets you enjoy 50 major tourist attractions, including heritage sites, Ganga Aarti Ghat, and parts of wildlife parks such as Kaziranga National Park and the Sundarbans Delta. This is a major development to take India’s potential for cruise tourism to the next level, by showcasing the country’s beautiful riverine beauty, cultural heritage, and spiritual splendor to the world.
Unique Features of the World’s Longest River Cruise
This Ganga Vilas Cruise has 18 suites that can accommodate 36 passengers along with the crew members. The fare of this cruise is around $300 per day, and that is the same for Indians and foreigners.
Each suite is packed up with amenities that will give you superior comfort throughout your cruise tour. From observing the scenic views standing on the deck to relaxing on your comfortable bed while enjoying “Floating Traveling,” every moment has something to impress you on this cruise.
The Ganga Vilas Cruise, operated by Antara Cruises, was scheduled to be flagged off by the Prime Minister on 13th January 2023 in Varanasi. It is a three-deck cruise that will traverse 3,200 km via five states of India and parts of Bangladesh over 51 days. During the entire tour of 51 days, the cruise will cover 27 river systems in India, including the Ganga-Bhagirathi-Hooghly, Brahmaputra, and West Coast Canal. It will cross several destinations, such as Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand, West Bengal, Bangladesh, and Assam.
If we further look at the trip expenses, the trip has several facilities such as spa, salon, and gym, costing around INR 20 lakhs total for each passenger for the entire 51-day trip, reportedly. Also, the cruise has a pollution-free system and noise control technology for a superior customer experience.
Moreover, the Ganga Vilas cruise has an open sundeck where guests can enjoy the spa and relax during the trip. Delicious cuisines that draw inspiration from various locations the ship visits on the route are another major highlight.
Positive Sentiment for Tourism
“This will be a unique cruise in the world and a reflection of growing cruise tourism in India. I request that the people of West Bengal take advantage of this,” said Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Reportedly, PM stated that the center has taken on the task of developing 100 national waterways, intending to see world-class cruise ships operating on these waterways in addition to cargo movement.
This development of cruise tourism, going forward, to open many dimensions to enjoy tourism in a multitude of ways and bring newer perspectives to different attractions on the routes. Overall, foreign tourists specifically will have an opportunity to get into this experiential voyage while discovering and indulging in the art, history, culture, and spirituality of India and Bangladesh.
Other Popular River Cruises in India
Cruise tourism has become significantly popular in recent times. All these cruises are present in every part of India – east, west, north, and south. All these cruises are rich cultural and spiritual experiences which give unique perspectives on India.
The 10-night Brahmaputra river cruise is a popular one that takes you through the Ahom Kings, Manjuli Island, Kaziranga National Park, and so much more. Another famous one is the Ganges Heritage river cruise which starts at Howrah Bridget and will take you through the ancient cities of Kolkata. Other top river cruises in India are the Mandori river cruise, Mangalore river cruise, and Sundarbans river cruise.