After offering a single October departure on India's Ganges and Hooghly rivers on the 40-passenger Rajmahal last October, Pandaw River Expeditions is again offering a single October departure on the Ganges this October.

The 20-year-old operator has traditionally specialized in the rivers of Southeast Asia, but is increasingly looking at additional waterways to expand to, and has been offering a growing number of sailings in India through partner river cruise lines.

Pandaw River Expeditions' Ganges river cruise includes a visit to Bhagalpur (a view from which is pictured), a riverside town known for its silk production

For this departure, Pandaw again partnered with Assam Bengal Navigation to charter the Rajmahal for an 18-day itinerary along the Ganges and Hooghly rivers from Kolkata to Varanasi, departing Oct. 20. The cruise includes visits to rural villages, palaces, stupas and battlefields.

The itinerary then continues by land to Bodhgaya to see the Mahabodhi Temple, known as the place where Buddha attained enlightenment under Bodhi Tree, followed by a flight to Varanasi for a two-night stay. In Varanasi travelers will experience a sunrise boat trip to see the steps, or ghats, leading to the Ganges.

The cruise starts are $4,995 per person, based on double occupancy.

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