Civilization started along the world’s riverways and, today, river cruising is a most civilized way to travel the world, prized for its leisurely pace, bucolic views and authentic experiences.
With nearly as many river cruising options as there are rivers, it’s smart to enlist the help of Luxury Travel Agent to match you with the experience that’s just-right for you. To get you started, here are a few things to keep in mind when planning your river cruise.
Know the Benefits
River cruising invites you to slow down and enjoy the journey along with each destination. In addition, river cruising offers travel benefits like:
- Ease. As with conventional ocean cruising, you’ll unpack only once, and yet you’ll get to enjoy an in-depth look at a variety of destinations. Most river cruises also include shore excursions that introduce you to places and people well beyond the riverfront cities, towns, and villages, giving you a well-rounded feel for the area;
- Proximity. Wherever you dock, you’ll typically find yourself mere steps from all the action and—because river cruise ships typically carry less than 200 passengers—you won’t feel like you’re traveling with the masses every time your ship disembarks;
- History. Once upon a time, rivers were the “roads” and some of the oldest cities, towns, and villages grew up along the rivers—today, river cruising is a convenient and rather romantic way to access this history; and
- Value-Packed. The cost for a typical river cruise includes all shore excursions and meals, and some also include limited alcoholic beverages, so you don’t encounter unexpected expenses during your trip
Know What to Expect
To maneuver comfortably along winding, sometimes-narrow rivers, river cruise ships tend to have tight quarters. But even the smallest river cruise ships tend to offer cabin categories with ample breathing room. It’s also important to note that if you’re ever feeling the need for additional space while on a river cruise, all you have to do is head to a roomy common area—the rooftop deck on a river cruise ship, for instance, is often a spacious spot to relax, socialize and take in the impressive and ever-changing views.
Know Where to Go
Europe, with its many scenic and diverse rivers, has set the standard for river cruising—but Europe is by no means the only place to enjoy river cruising. The Yangtze in China, the Nile in Egypt and the Amazon which flows through several countries in South America are also exceptional areas to explore and enjoy with a river cruise. Let’s not forget the great Mississippi river and the Columbia Snake Rivers here in the United States.
Know When (and How!) to Book
Early-booking is essential when it comes to river cruising. Unlike conventional ocean cruising, where you’ll sometimes find a great last-minute deal, river cruises sell out months before departure. To benefit from the greatest variety and choices, book up to a year in advance.
Before you book, of course, you have to identify your just-right river cruise line, ship and itinerary. With Luxury Travel Agent’s unique knowledge on river cruising around the world, we help you navigate through your many options so you can quickly identify your ideal river cruise experience. But our job doesn’t end there! We can coordinate all aspects of your journey with discounted business class flights, pre & post cruise accommodations, travel insurance and more.