River Cruises: Europe

How are River Cruises Different from Ocean Cruises?

There are both similarities and differences between ocean cruises and river cruises, so it is smart to have an understanding of both before choosing which is best for you. Generally, ocean liners tend to be quite a bit larger and you will find added amenities in your room. With their bigger size, they can carry many more passengers on board.

How photo River ships have a much more intimate atmosphere due to the smaller size, and people commonly find themselves making lots of new friends.

A second differing feature is that on a river cruise you are almost never sailing for a full day at a time, where ocean cruises are oftentimes on the open sea for a few days in a row. Every day takes travelers to a different port of call.

The sense of discovering new places is also felt while the ship is sailing since the outside view is constantly changing.

If you are nervous you might get seasick, a river cruise is the way to travel because land is always in your line of vision, the water is not deep, and there is barely any turbulence. Then again, because they are larger, ocean cruises have a greater variety of onboard offerings like live entertainment, gyms and fitness centers, and more variety of dining possibilities. But river cruises are nice in that they feature inclusive pricing that includes water, alcoholic refreshments, Wi-Fi, and even some fun activities off the ship.

The Delights of Europe Aboard a River Cruise

Discover the finest of Europe’s historic waterways by boat. Cruising rivers like the Loire, Elbe, Duoro, Rhine, Volga, Danube, and Dnieper is a memorable vacation experience.

Size doesn't matter.
While river ships need to be small enough to traverse these waterways, they can be just as luxurious, with world-class dining, modern technology, live entertainment, and unforgettable local excursions.

These benefits create an ambiance that is elegant yet intimate and tranquil. Itineraries are designed to make best use of the amount of time vacationers spend at their ports of call.

What is interesting about these excursions is that they give guests the chance to experience the local culture of each port. Discover these places through the stories revealed by its artists, history and culinary pleasures.

River Cruises: Destinations

The only thing more breathtaking than stepping on board one of these cruisers is stepping off. For every river cruise around Europe there is a distinctive set of things to do and see. Explore Europe from its lovely waterways and uncover whole new worlds at the heart of your destination city. Extreme adventurers, fans of history, and individuals looking for first-hand experience in local ways of life will all appreciate the activities available to them.

You will have the opportunity to view the spectacular scenery of Europe’s most beautiful villages and countryside, visit ancient landmarks, and participate in cultural events in the greatest cities on the continent. These elegant vessels are the optimal size to navigate into the smaller harbors and ports closest to the most significant attractions and town centers.

Famed Rivers of France
France boasts many diverse regions recognized throughout the world, and a river cruise will allow you to explore them.

From its majestic Bordeaux region and gastronomic Lyon, to historic Normandy and scenic Provence, not to mention fabulous Paris, France features something for everyone.

The farms and forests of Aquitaine, once one of the wealthiest places in Europe, are as breathtaking as its well-known wine region and picturesque ports. You can go Cognac tasting at the Camus distillery in Périgord and then go hunting for its famous truffles. Savor France’s finest oysters just brought in from the bay at Arcachon. Sample the delectable red blends crafted in the famous wineries of Saint-Émilion and Médoc or sample the decadent sweet wines of Sauternes.

Regardless of which French river you prefer – the Seine, Dordogne, Gironde, or Rhône – you will be able to delight in France’s unique food and wine culture and well as its art, history, and other traditions.

Historied Rivers of Germany and Central Europe
Elbe River cruises feature both the Czech Republic and Germany and carry passengers on a thrilling trip past medieval villages and ancient forts.

Fans of German Riesling will enjoy traveling down the Mosel River, known as the Moselle in France, which will take them through the region of Germany celebrated for its wines. Ocean icon If you favor Central Europe, go with a cruise down the Danube to Budapest, the Hungarian city famous for its relaxing banyas (thermal baths); or to Vienna, where you can take a lesson in the waltz, which became prevalent in the ballrooms of the Austrian court. Foodies will love the Austro-Hungarian culinary wonders, while inquisitive adventurers might prefer to enjoy time in some lesser-known cities such as Passau or Bratislava.

The Waterways of the Tsars

In Russia you will not want to forget the splendid cathedral of St. Basil’s or the captivating architecture of Moscow’s famous Red Square.

Art enthusiasts will enjoy the impressive Hermitage Museum in Russia, which is the world’s second largest museum.

The magnificent Peterhof Palace will take your breath away, while the Soviet-era kommunalka will give you remarkable insight into the everyday lives of the multiple families who lived there together commune-style. Of course, when you are in Russia you should indulge in the celebrated local cuisine like pirog, solyanka, borscht, blini pancakes, and of course some decadent caviar.

Numerous peoples played a role in the history of the Dnieper River: Russian, Ottoman, Jewish, Cossack, Greek, Tatar, and Mongol. Historic places of worship and monasteries, Soviet-era landmarks, museums and displays of legendary horsemanship, and music and dance are found along the river’s banks from Kiev to Odessa.

Portugal's Duoro River Valley

Travel the Douro River in Portugal to the thriving cosmopolitan city of Lisbon, with its newly invigorated neighborhoods of art galleries, cafes, and shopping areas. Sample the region’s most celebrated wine, Port, as well as its delicious culinary treasures; tour the lovely vineyards; and see a fado singing performance.

The Douro River Valley is proud to be the first demarcated wine appellation in the world as well as a UNESCO site.

Nordic Wonders
Start out by seeing the spectacular Nordic sights from the sea before heading to the exciting Rhine River. Get started in historic Bergen, a city with significant Viking roots, and set off for Norway’s breathtaking fjord landscapes, cruising to scenic Flåm, cosmopolitan Stavanger, history-rich Kristiansand and dynamic Oslo.

Skagen, Denmark is famous for its sandy beaches in the north; Kinderdijk, Holland is the home of the country’s classic windmills; and Amsterdam is the region’s most vivacious and colorful city.

The sights & tastes of Germany along its riverways

In Germany, taste local beer and visit the breathtaking ancient cathedral in Cologne or take a tour of the imposing Ehrenbreitstein Fortress. Discover the turreted fortresses, grand cathedrals, historic cities, medieval towns and dazzling scenery of the Middle Rhine, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Travel through the renowned Black Forest in Germany, stop in France’s Strasbourg with its magnificent Gothic cathedral, then on to Basel, Switzerland with its charming medieval old town. What you do on land should be just as rewarding as all the fun you will have on board. Immerse yourself in the unique culture, attractions and food of the places you’ll visit. Just as each cruise ship is planned to be a distinct and exclusive experience, each destination is similarly unique and special.

A Million Different Escapades for Two
Whether you want an elegant or a relaxed holiday, you can be certain that there’s a great place out there for you. Sometimes taking a trip and spending quality time with the person you love goes further than any gift ever... read more
How Working with a Travel Advisor Can Benefit You
Do you need to change your vacation plans but you just cannot deal with the time, money and headache of modifying all your flights and accommodation by yourself? This is when you turn to a travel specialist who has... read more