Emerald Waterways’ new Star-Ship, Harmony, launched in August 2019 and sails between Siem Reap, Cambodia, and Ho Chi Minh City. Each itinerary offers a truly authentic experience — complete with local guides, makers, and performers. Be sure to pick up a silk scarf and candies before you head home. On board, there's a gorgeous swimming pool and some very interesting eating experiences (cockroaches, anyone?). But the best part? There are only 42 cabins with a staff of 40. That’s basically one crew member per cabin. Here’s our review of the brand-new vessel.
What We Love
Balcony-Equipped Staterooms: Nearly every room onboard features a drop-down balcony window, seamlessly incorporating your room and the outdoors. However, four staterooms on the Riviera deck have portholes.
A Fabulous Pool: The infinity pool on the back of the ship is always warm and inviting. Every itinerary features a pool party complete with DJ, color-changing lights, and video on a projector screen.
Best Known For
Navigating Narrow Passages: This ship is built specifically to navigate the canal on the Mekong River, which connects Cambodia with Ho Chi Minh City. It's one of only three leisure vessels that can take that path.
Intimate Small Ship Experiences: If you prefer not to cruise with thousands of other passengers, you'll appreciate Emerald Harmony. Thanks to its small size, it's always possible to find a quiet space on board to relax, enjoy, and take in the beautiful surroundings.
Cultural Immersion: Excursions are designed to allow passengers to experience, mingle, and connect with local artisans, musicians, and designers alike. Enjoy freshly made coconut candy, try on a woven silk scarf, or listen to a live musical performance.
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Who It's Best For
Eco-Friendly Travelers: Harmony is the first ship in Emerald’s fleet that has banned single-use plastics onboard. The straws are either plastic or bamboo, every guest gets a reusable metal water bottle, and toiletries all come in refillable packages.
Adventurous Eaters — Sometimes: A few days out of the trip, the culinary team organizes a street market lunch, which includes all sorts of bugs, including like tarantulas and cockroaches. Some excursions also offer unique food opportunities. We indulged in pork-stuffed grilled frog and silkworms.
Don't Say We Didn't Warn You
You Won’t Be Able to Explore Much: Harmony doesn’t dock much. In fact, nearly every stop on the cruise is anchored, and sampan boats are waiting nearby to take you on excursions. If you don’t have an activity scheduled, you’ll be on the ship all day with no opportunity to get off and explore.
Humidity Might Be a Problem: Vietnam and Cambodia are both incredibly hot and humid, and that weather can seep into your stateroom. Even with our air conditioner blasting the whole trip, our stateroom — and belongings — still all felt damp.