With the substantial growth of waterways, India’s cruise tourism business is ready to embark on a wonderful new journey. Prime Minister Narendra Modi will inaugurate the MV Ganga Vilas, the world’s longest river voyage, on Friday, January 13, 2023.
The cruise has been advertised since 2018 and was scheduled to debut in 2020. However, the project was pushed back in view of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The luxury ship will sail 3,200 kilometres in 50 days via 27 Indian river systems, including the Ganga-Bhagirathi-Hooghly, Brahmaputra, and West Coast Canal.
According to the official website, Ganga Vilas can accommodate 80 passengers. The vessel is a magnificent river cruiser with 18 staterooms and all the facilities you could want.
The ship will also include a luxurious restaurant, spa, and sundeck. In its 40-seat restaurant on the Main Deck, there are a few buffet counters serving Continental and Indian food. According to authorities, the outdoor environment on the Upper Deck contains a bar with Real Teak Steamer Chairs and coffee tables, which is enough to give travellers with a one-of-a-kind cruise experience.
The ship has 18 tastefully designed suites. It was built with a distinct aesthetic and a forward-thinking approach. Ganga Vilas pioneers boutique river experiences by merging traditional and modern amenities with minimalistic design. The flats have calm decor with well chosen colour palettes.
According to UP tourist authorities, these are outfitted with a range of amenities such as a bathroom with a shower, convertible beds, a French balcony, an LED TV, a safe, smoke detectors, life vests, and sprinklers.
On its debut journey, 32 Swiss visitors will travel from Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh to Dibrugarh in Assam. The ship is scheduled to dock in Dibrugarh on March 1.
However, ticket fares are yet to be announced officialy.
“The global River cruise market has grown at ~5% over the last few years and is expected to constitute ~37% of cruise market by 2027. Europe has been driving growth with approx. 60% share of river cruise vessels in the world. In India, 8 river cruise vessels are operational between Kolkata and Varanasi while cruise movement is also operation on National Waterways 2 (Brahmaputra). Tourism activities like river rafting, camping, sightseeing, kayaking and so on are operation in many spots in the country,” reads the official press statement.