Ocean cruises became wildly popular with the television series The Love Boat beginning in 1977, and for good reason. They’re affordable, hassle-free and offer travelers peace of mind knowing that everything they need for a marvelous vacation is all in one place. Is there anything better than that? Well, yes, a river cruise takes you one step further.
You might think that the words “inland” and “cruise” are contradictory. Well, let me show you 5 ways they go together. River cruises combine all the ease and convenience of an ocean cruise with the thrill of European sightseeing in each port of call.
To all cruise-lovers, perhaps it’s time to shake up the ocean liner experience for an entirely new way to explore the world’s waterways. Let us book you on an river cruise that will take you inland for a unique and relaxing tour of Europe.
Here are the top 5 reasons we know why you’ll love river cruising!
1. Escalate Your Options
While ocean cruises take you to countries, river cruises take you through them. There clearly is no way to reach inland river cruise destinations on jumbo ocean cruise ships.
2. Personal Experience
River cruising setting is warm and informal. Most ships range from 100 to 199 passengers. Hate to have to wait in line? Not on a river cruise so you’ll have more time to enjoy all the services and have more time to interact with other passengers and crew. From check-in to disembarkation, you’ll appreciate the lack of long lines.
3. Plunge into the Native TraditionsGet away from the crowded ports and explore hidden gems. Mega ocean cruise ship ports can be accosted by up to 20,000 visitors on the same day but on a river cruise, you’ll arrive into port with just a fraction of that many visitors. This means you’ll have the benefit of leisurely sightseeing at each memorable stop. You’ll be able to absorb the destinations' traditions and history of every charming village that you visit.
4. No Need to Hurry Back to the ShipLate afternoon or evening departures mean you’ll have the opportunity to enjoy the nightlife in select ports of call. How about an evening stroll through cobblestone streets, a local show or performance, a bike ride around the village, or one last glass of wine after dinner at a neighborhood bistro together with the locals?
5. A Palate-Pleasing JourneyIndulge in superb regionally-inspired cuisine prepared with fresh, locally-sourced and seasonal ingredients. Whether it's wine, chocolate, cheese or beer tasting or even local street food, a river cruise offers an extraordinary culinary experience both on the ship and at every destination.
So what’s it gonna be? The Rhine, Main, Danube, Seine, Rhone, Douro, or a combination of two or more? No matter if you want a spur-of-the-moment Christmas Markets adventure this year or want to plan for one in 2021 or 2022, a great river cruise experience is never far away. To help you find the perfect trip, we’ve lined up an unbeatable array of vacations that have everything you could possibly need for taking a memorable cruise.
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Scooter Tessari, MCC, owns The Cruise Center, Inc. in Kalamazoo, Michigan, and operates the website Tasteful Journeys devoted to enrichment vacations with a culinary accent and featuring cruises, tours, and custom designed vacation packages.