While ocean cruises are one of the most popular ways to spend a holiday, river cruises are becoming increasingly popular. Cruising on the world’s most beautiful rivers opens up the possibilities to experience a wider array of destinations and exotic scenery.
Rather than views of miles and miles of open water the scenery is that of vast green fields, snow-capped mountains, breathtaking cities and a glimpse into the culture and history of those cities.
River cruising allows you to see what you were missing on coastal cruises. These cruises give you a chance to see for example more of Europe, allowing you to spend time in magnificent cities like Budapest, Cologne and Vienna. Once you dock, you are only minutes, not hours away from everything these famous cities have to offer.
To keep up with the growing popularity of river cruising, operators are investing in new vessels that include many of the modern amenities found on the ocean ships like large suites, pools, and inspiring collections of art.
Here are a few of those companies offering river cruise holidays:
Tauck River Cruises
Tauck features the great rivers of Europe with all-inclusive holidays like romantic voyages on the Rhine and visits to places like Normandy, Paris and the D-Day beaches on the Seine River. You can travel the Danube and see cities most people never experience such as Vienna, Bratislava and Nuremberg. Cruise excursions to historic landmarks and historic and cultural sites are included as part of the cruise package.
AmaWaterways are one of the premier river cruise companies. They have 15 ships in their fleet, all innovatively designed, that operate on the rivers of Europe and Russia. Ama has recently introduced some new itineraries that include the Douro River in Portugal and France’s River Seine. Some of their more unusual trips include travelling along the Mekong River through Cambodia and Vietnam and the Chobe in Africa.
They promise luxurious smooth cruising that will allow you to watch the local scenery pass by from either your personal balcony or from the beautiful decks. The amenities as well as the service on board an Ama cruise are impeccable.
Uniworld Boutique Cruises
Uniworld are known for their boutique cruises that offer a five-star hotel experience on board.
With Uniworld, you can see many of the most beautiful parts of Europe from the deck or balconies of one of their ships.
Besides the usual itineraries on rivers like the Danube and Seine, Uniworld offers cruises on the Rhine, Moselle and Po, as well as the Volga in Russia. You can also experience the beauty of the Nile and the exotic places along the Yangtze.
Avalon is known for its fleet of award winning ships and having the newest ships on the rivers of Europe. Since these ships are younger than most in the river cruise industry, they have larger staterooms, modern technology, and many unique features.
One of their featured itineraries is the Danube, the longest river in the world. Cruises run from Budapest to Vienna with stops at a number of small and quaint villages along the way. They also cruise the Main River in Germany, which winds through scenery and landmarks that many people picture in their minds when we think of this country - like villages from medieval times and fairy tale castles.
Viking River Cruises
The stylish ships of Viking River Cruises accommodate from 120 to 260 passengers, which means that staterooms are airy and spacious. Although not nearly as large as ocean going ships, Viking offer a variety of lounge areas and other areas to relax and watch the beauty of the river valley pass.
The rivers that they cruise include the Garonne and Dordogne in France and the Elbe in Germany. They also offer cruises on many of the waterways of Holland and Belgium.