Sail aboard Regent Seven Seas Explorer, the world’s most luxurious cruise ship, on a spectacular six-star 17-night South East Asia cruise in February 2022, including a visit to the The Bridge On The River Kwai, starting at the exclusive, unbeatable all-inclusive Club price of £6,797: this is a truly remarkable and exclusive saving for CountryClubuk Members of up to 43% off the full fare.
Join us on an exciting six-star ‘Culture and Cuisine of Asia’ cruise from Bali to Bangkok, absorbing the wondrous sights and sounds of Indonesia, Malaysia, Vietnam, Thailand—and The Bridge On The River Kwai, the infamous Burma Railway of World War Two. We shall be taking an historic cruise, following in the wake of Rudyard Kipling and W Somerset Maugham, seeing the beguiling lands of colonial planters and adventurers, novelists and poets, on an inspiring cruise of the exotic East—with up to 41 free port excursions.
Everything is included: your luxurious suite with its private veranda, return flight and transfers, excellent and unlimited wines, fine dining in speciality restaurants, exclusive, top-notch shore excursions, gratuities and more . . . all that is left to do is relax and enjoy your travels.
Regent Seven Seas Cruises wins the most coveted awards: Best for Accommodation: Best for Luxury: Best for Excursions: Best Luxury Cruise Line: Favourite Cruise Line and more
And for all this fully-inclusive luxury you have exclusive access to special rates available only to you as a CountryClubuk Member.
So here is a fabulous six-star 17-night cruise on February 4, 2022, aboard Seven Seas Explorer, with exclusive, unbeatable Club savings: Your all-inclusive Club price starts at £6,797 including flights, transfers and post-cruise land programme, which saves you at least £4,122 per person off the full rate! Read on for all the details . . .
We are delighted to announce this exclusive new rate for Members on Seven Seas Explorer, so that you can luxuriate in what is officially ‘the world’s most luxurious cruise ship’ on a fabulous South East Asia cruise which gives you a sunshine-filled winter holiday.
If an ocean cruise is the way to see a great many wonders of the world at your ease, and in a short space of time—then Regent Seven Seas is the way to see them with elegance and style, taking advantage of the all-inclusive rates which give you complimentary flights, excellent wines, fine food in speciality restaurants, five-star private suites with balconies and multiple free top-grade shore excursions. And to give you some idea of what luxury means for Seven Seas Explorer’s guests, on her graceful walls hangs an art collection including not one but two original Picassos, a Miro and a Chagall.
Regent Seven Seas is the cruise line which invented ‘all-inclusive’ and has won every accolade: Best Luxury Cruise Line; Best for Accommodation; Best for Luxury; Best for Excursions; Best Small Ships and a host of awards too numerous to list here. Regent have among the highest crew-to-passenger ratio, the most spacious, relaxing accommodation, cuisine so haute it is heavenly . . . and they are totally, generously, no-holds-barred all-inclusive—meaning everything, from unlimited shore excursions in every port of call, to return flights, to excellent wines and spirits, and more. And you receive exclusive Club rates, not open to other passengers.
These cruises give you the pleasures of the world in comfort and safety, with none of the hardships of attempting to reach multiple destinations by other means. So what about cruising from Bali to Bangkok in February 2022, in your private suite with its own balcony aboard what is officially the world’s most luxurious cruise ship?
We chose Regent’s 17-night ‘Culture & Cuisine of Asia from Bali’ for all of the above benefits—and for our exceptional Club rates. The beautiful and historic multiple ports of call give chance to see, in a single trip, everything from the beauties of Bali, Jakarta and Kuala Lumpur, Singapore, where we shall stay overnight to give chance to absorb the full flavours of this wonderful city, and thence to Penang and Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, before sailing on to Ho Chi Minh City, another overnight stay so that you can really absorb the cultures and delights ov Viet Nam, followed by a night in Bangkok, Thailand—and three nights on an historic and moving visit to the Bridge Over the River Kwai, the ‘Death Railway’ of World War Two, a poignant re-enactment of the suffering imposed on the Allied Forces during the Second World War.
The 17-night itinerary begins on February 4, 2022, embarking at Bali, having flown direct from the UK: Feb 4, Bali (Benoa), Indonesia; Feb 5, Cruising the Java Sea; Feb 6, Jakarta, Indonesia; Feb 7 and 8, Cruising the Java Sea; Feb 9, Penang, Malaysia; Feb 10, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; Feb 11 and 12, Singapore; Feb 13, Cruising the Gulf of Thailand; February 14 (Valentine’s Day) and Feb 15, Ho Chi Ming City, Viet Nam; Feb 16, Cruising the Gulf of Thailand; Feb 17 and 19, Bangkok, Thailand; Feb 20 Bridge Over the River Kwai programme. With four full days at sea, being on Explorer, the world’s most luxurious cruise ship, really comes into its own. As does the 41 free port excursions along the way. At each port of call you can partake in as many shore excursions as you wish—and have energy for!—among the variety of visits and events, historic insights, entertainment, wine and food tastings, dining, dancing and discovery.
You will board Explorer on Bali, Indonesia’s stunning topical island. If you have booked Concierge class or above, or opted for the complimentary pre-cruise excursion instead of the Bridge over the River Kwai, Regent’s free excursions will give you opportunities for a wealth of pleasures before you board your luxurious cruise ship Explorer, ready to sample her delights for the evening ahead. The following morning we sail for Jakarta, cruising the Java Sea amid the warm tropical air, transformed by the pink haze of the setting sun.
With a day at sea there is time to relax and enjoy Explorer—herself one of the wonders of the seven seas. Wine and dine in style, enjoy the fine art collection, the casino, the spa, the sports, the shows, and of course the pleasures of a relaxing day in your own private suite and on your balcony, taking in the sunshine and sea air. And then, early next morning, you will awake to see wonderful Jakarta, Indonesia’s friendly capital and itself and historic World War Two site—the port by which thousands of British and Commonwealth servicemen entered Java in February 1942 from Singapore and Sumatra, shortly before the Japanese invasion of the island.
Then it is on to Penang Island, Malaysia, land of Somerset Maugham, Rudyard Kipling and more. Walk here and you’ll feel the reverberations of an older England. This is the nation’s oldest British settlement: and on the seafront in George Town stands an iconic hotel, the elegant Eastern & Oriental, where Kipling was a guest, and Maugham, who stayed so often a suite was named for him. The E & O was known as ‘The Premier Hotel East of Suez’. It was the social centre not only of Penang Island, the first British foothold in Malaya, but of nearby mainland communities. In the age of planters and adventurers, the E & O held the banquets, balls and weddings of the rich. Relaxing amid the hotel’s old colonial elegance, amid the memories of past eras, we may decide to take tea.
There is more to Penang, and we shall see it all, exploring George Town: Fort Cornwallis, the site where Captain Francis Light first landed, the Penang Museum, the Khoo Clan Ancestral House and the Chew Jetty, an early Chinese settlement of houses built on stilts along the waterfront. Unesco world heritage status has saved historic buildings from the wrecking ball. The sumptuous Chinese mansions and maze-like chop-houses are elegant boutique hotels, art galleries and boutiques, restaurants and bars. And in the street there are still the teeming markets, artisan workshops, strange medicinal shops and delicious 24-hour hawker stalls that make George Town one of the last surviving authentic Chinatowns.
After another luxurious night aboard Explorer, we shall awake to see Malaysia’s capital, Kuala Lumpur. The sun may have set on the British Empire, but here amid the teeming streets are the sights and smells of a colonial Malaya: this is the place to enjoy a whisky-and-soda ‘stengah’ or a pink gin as we tour the sights. The architecture of the capital is like a flamboyant display of prize-winning examples of Victorian, Chinese, Moorish-Muslim, Indian and 21st-century styles. The space is grand. There are stunning gardens, palaces, temples including the Blue Mosque. Here we can visit a Malay home. Or we can explore the centuries-old town of Malacca—which of course gave its name to a particular cane walking stick. And then we shall return to our luxurious Explorer in preparation for arrival in the great port of Singapore, for two full days’ exploration.
We are thrilled that this cruise enables us to enjoy two amazing days in the historic and vibrant city of Singapore, with its multi-cultural, colonial and wartime past preserved in and around the city. You can visit monuments, museums and memorials, or for a real trip through time, take a walk along a heritage trail. This is a gilded dream city, filled with history, culture, Asian arts and entertainment.
The sheer excitement of Singapore never fail to amaze. And all the spectacular visions of this great trading city will be at your feet to explore—no worries about visas, planning, guides or personal safety—everything is taken care of. World War Two history is all around, but Singapore also offers diverse colourful ethnic quarters; a fantastic array of superb cuisines; and a shopping mecca second to none. In many ways Singapore (the name means Lion City) was built by Sir Stamford Raffles. Coming ashore to a tiny fishing village in 1819, through trade treaties and business acumen, he laid the foundation for one of the most amazing urban success stories in history. Today, travellers can embrace exotic sights and sounds as they stroll or ride a trishaw through Chinatown, the Arab Quarter or Little India. Head down to the scenic Boat Quay for unrivalled views of the harbour and stop at one of the many international restaurants for an authentic Singaporean dish. Shop along famous Orchard Road with its merchandise from every corner of the Pacific Rim; embark on a night safari at the Singapore Zoo; or relax in the verdant shade of the Bukit Timah Nature Preserve. Be sure to leave time to avoid the tourists and enjoy a refreshing Singapore Sling at the bar at Raffles Hotel.
These treasures in sights and sounds and historic events fully live up to their reputation. You can be absorbed by Singapore for days and still come out wanting more.
We shall leave Singapore on the evening tide, ready to relax aboard Explorer as she sails on through the Gulf of Thailand towards Ho Chi Ming City, Vietnam, where again we shall have two full days to explore. In times past this city was of course named Saigon, a city redolent of history, war and charm in equal measure. Among those who have enjoyed this city were W Somerset Maugham, who arrived by boat, writing, ‘Notwithstanding the Chinese city that has grown up since the French occupied the country, and notwithstanding the natives who saunter along the pavements or, in wide straw hats like extinguishers, pull rickshaws, Saigon has all the air of a little provincial town in the South of France. It is laid out with broad streets, shaded with handsome trees, and there is a bustle in them that is quite unlike the bustle of an Eastern town in an English colony. It is a blithe and smiling little place. It has an opera house, white and shining, built in a flamboyant style of the Third Republic, which faces a broad avenue; and it has a Hotel de Ville which is very grand, new and ornate. Outside the hotels are terraces, and at the hour of the “aperitif” they are crowded with bearded, gesticulating Frenchmen, drinking the sweet beverages, Vermouth Casis, Byrrh, and Quinquina Dubonnet, which they drink in France, and they talk nineteen to the dozen in the rolling accent of the Midi. Gay little ladies who have something to do with local theatre are dressed in smart clothes and with their penciled eyebrows and rouged cheeks bring a cheerful air of sophistication to this far distant spot. In the shops you will find Paris dresses from Marseilles and London hats from Lille. Victorias drawn by two little ponies gallop past, and motor cars toot their horns. The sun beats down from a cloudless sky, and the shade is heavy with the heat.’
We can still find the underlying atmosphere of which Somerset Maugham wrote, and our Regent Seven Seas excursions are there to offer a flavour of both colonial past and current modernity. Two days is hardly enough—and all too soon we shall be cruising the Gulf of Thailand again, this time bound for our final port of call, Laem Chabang, gateway to the great Thai capital, Bangkok. This, ‘the Venice of the East’, is an exhilarating attack on the senses. Sukhomvit’s malls and gleaming skyscrapers are a veneer of modernity for a city rooted in ancient Buddhist beliefs and traditions. Watch saffron-robed monks on their morning alms rounds, clouds of incense rising above the Grand Palace’s golden spires, and long-tail boats gliding along the Chao Phraya River at dusk, to discover Bangkok’s underlying sense of calm and the spirit of Siam.
There will be two days in which to take in the beauties of Bangkok. There will be chance to take a scenic drive around the Gulf of Thailand to River City, an arts and antiques hub on the Chao Phraya River. We can board a traditional rice barge and sail the calm waters of this ‘River of Kings’, or visit the Ancient City, an open book of Thai history. We can see the lavish Suphanahonge, a gold encrusted swan-shaped barge in the Royal Barge Museum, and take to the water again to explore the Floating Market, or a magical Chao Phraya River cruise by night to see the glittering cityscape light up. We can explore Bangkok like a local, by tuk-tuk, including Chinatown, the flower markets and striking Wat Po, the oldest temple in Bangkok. We shall discover floating shops, teakwood houses and hidden temples as we glide among Thonburi’s network of canals. We can go shopping, too: Bangkok is a treasure-trove of fine Thai silks and gemstone jewellery—and the fabulous rooftop bars and spas are unmissable treats in themselves.
After our inspirational voyage, Bangkok will be a fitting finale to capture the last rays of enchantment of the East in any way you choose. But if instead you have chosen the CountryClubuk complimentary Bridge On the River Kwai visit, then still to come will be a three-day adventure including one of the most moving experiences in South East Asia—a walk across the famed Bridge on the River Kwai, and chance to discover at first hand the extraordinary and horrific story of the Prisoners of War forced to build ‘The Death Railway’.
On this adventure we shall begin by exploring Bangkok itself, taking a river cruise along bustling Chao Phaya River and through a complex network of klongs or canals. Along the way, we shall see traditional Thai canal life, floating grocery stores, water taxis zipping up and down the river, and teakwood houses built on stilts. Our first stop will be the Royal Barge Museum, which houses ornately decorated longboats once used for royal functions. In particular, we shall see the lavish Suphanahonge, a gold-encrusted swan-shaped barge reserved solely for the King. Then it’s on to the riverside Wat Arun, the Temple of Dawn, one of the finest in Bangkok. Next stop, the Royal Orchid Sheraton, to relax and enjoy the rest of the day at leisure, preparing for next day’s visit to the Bridge On the River Kwai.
After an early breakfast, we shall take a three-hour journey inland, through the magnificent scenery of the Kanchanaburi Province to the Thailand-Burma Railway Centre. Here we shall hear the horrific history of the railway, which the invading Japanese Army used mostly Allied and Dutch prisoners of war as forced labour to build. The rules of war did not exist in terms of treatment of captured prisoners by the Japanese—some were horrific. The men were forced to work 18 hours a day on only a bowl of rice, and in such hellish conditions more than 100,000 prisoners of war and others struggled and died during its construction, giving rise to the name ‘Death Railway’. Many POWs who died are buried at the Kanchanaburi War Cemetery, set up by the War Graves Commission, and here we shall learn more about the conditions which the POWs endured. It is a sombre setting, made even more poignant as it is so close to the base camp through which most of the POWs passed before being sent on to the railway, many of them never to return.
In time, we shall travel on to the Bridge on the River Kwai itself. As we walk across the span a guide will be on hand to share more facts about the POWs and about how the building of the bridge was depicted in the 1957 Academy Award-winning film ‘The Bridge on the River Kwai’.
Later, we shall have chance to interact with elephants, the national animal of Thailand, to assist in their care and feeding and watch as the elephants bathe. All in all, the day will be an utterly memorable and immensely fulfilling experience.
Afterwards, we shall reach our hotel for the evening by boat, checking into the elegant Floathouse River Kwai Resort, a boutique hideaway with exotic villas which float on the river. Each luxurious and spacious floating villa is totally private and rich in custom tailored-made teakwood furniture with thatched roofs. The remainder of the day will be at our leisure, and dinner will be on our own.
Next morning will be at leisure to enjoy the resort’s amenities as you please—this is a good opportunity to take a Long Tailed boat trip on the River Kwai and recall the memories of the day before. After a noon check-out and lunch, we shall visit Wang Bang Kung, a highly unusual Buddhist temple built more than 200 years ago and now covered by the roots of a giant banyan tree. Inside, the walls are covered in murals which depict the life of Buddha. Then it’s back to the Royal Orchid Sheraton to spend the remainder of the day at leisure, and to savour our last evening in Bangkok.
As with so much about Regent Seven Seas Cruises, the choices are great, the style is relaxed, with freedom to be yourself.
So if it is your pleasure to enjoy a glass of chilled Champagne with canapés on your private balcony in the long summer evenings, taking in yet another beautiful seascape, consider it done: a bottle will arrive, on ice, at the appropriate moment. Whole Maine lobster and Alaskan king crabs? Fresh truffles and foie gras? Caviar with your scrambled eggs? All are yours for the ordering—and for Sunday brunch the caviar and Champagne bar awaits. Private dinner for two in your suite? Certainly: any time of the day or night. Roulette? The casino is open for play. Whisky and cigar? Time to visit the Connoisseur Club. Golf? Bocce? Tennis? Cabaret? A good book or film? Swimming? Sunbathing, iced cocktail to hand?
All are at our disposal—and there is no need to worry about carrying a wallet on board ship; it is all taken care of. Fares include all drinks, meals and speciality restaurants, excellent wines and premium spirits; return flights and transfers; unlimited shore excursions (which with other cruise lines can really add to the costs); all onboard activities including guest lectures, fitness programmes and entertainment; 24-hour room service and in-suite dining; free Wifi, films and music; and all gratuities. Flights are included, and on this cruise, through CountryClubuk the ‘Bridge On the River Kwai’ visit is included for Members.
For the savvy traveller the inclusive price of all these often makes a Regent Seven Seas cruise work out more advantageous than cruises where you have to pay for everything separately. As you can tell, these are important benefits—particularly with these seriously good Club savings. You are warmly invited to enjoy!
HOW TO BOOK AND SAVE UP TO 43% ON THIS CRUISE AS A COUNTRYCLUBUK MEMBER
As a Club Member you have special rates on all Regent Seven Seas Cruises, including all Seven Seas Explorer cruises, including this amazing 17-night cruise and post-cruise holiday embarking on February 4, 2022. Rates are per person for two sharing, with all the same all-inclusive benefits of passengers paying full fare, including free flights and transfers. Bookings are subject to availability, and these rates are eye-wateringly good, so please don’t delay—contact us now on 020 7399 2960!
Seventeen-night Bali-Bangkok ‘Culture and Cuisine of Asia’, all-inclusive, with Two Days in Singapore, Two Days in Two Days in Ho Chi Ming City, Two Days in Bangkok, and a Four-Day ‘Bridge on the River Kwai’ post-cruise programme included: Feb 4 to Feb 22, 2022:
Deluxe Veranda Suite H (limited availability): Full fare £10,919. CCUK £6,797. Click here to register interest and for more details.
Superior Suite F2: Full fare £11,639. CCUK £7,276. Click here to register interest and for more details.
Concierge Suite E, including additional free one-night pre-cruise luxury hotel stay and more: Full fare £12,209. CCUK £7,672. Click here to register interest and for more details.
Penthouse Suite C, including additional free one-night pre-cruise luxury hotel stay, Business Class flights, personal butler and more: Full fare £13,729. CCUK £8,623. Click here to register interest and for more details..
Other suites may also be available, and all categories are at exclusive CCUK Members’ rates.
¶ Our Members regularly save thousands of pounds on Regent Seven Seas Cruises. Call us on 020 7399 2960 for full details.