5 Best River Cruises in the World

by R Long
February 11, 2023

Riverboat cruising is a unique and enjoyable way to experience some of the world’s most beautiful and varied landscapes. From the lush green hills of Ireland to the tranquil canals of Venice, river cruises can take you to places you never thought possible. Cruising along a river provides you with an excellent opportunity to explore the local area and discover some of the hidden gems that can be found along the way.

Riverboats come in a variety of sizes, from small, intimate vessels to large, luxurious cruises for hundreds of passengers. The type of boat you select will depend on the size of your party and the kind of experience you’re looking for. Some vessels offer guided tours that provide an in-depth look at the area, while others provide independent, self-guided cruises with no set itinerary.

Riverboat cruises typically offer a variety of activities and amenities, such as spa treatments, onboard restaurants, and entertainment options. The trips can be as relaxing or as active as you wish, with plenty of opportunities to explore the local area, observe wildlife, or simply enjoy the scenery. No matter what you’re looking for, there is a riverboat cruise to suit every taste and budget.

These riverboat cruises offer a unique way to experience the world and create lasting memories. Whether you’re looking for a romantic getaway with your partner, a family holiday, or an adventurous solo trip, riverboat cruising is sure to provide an unforgettable experience.

River Cruises

River cruises are one of the most popular and luxurious ways to explore the world’s waterways. Riverboat cruising is definitely different from ocean cruising. Not better or worse, just different. Many cruise lines offer seagoing cruises as well as river cruises.

From the mighty Amazon to the iconic Nile, there are many wonderful cruises to choose from. Here are some of the best river cruises available around the world:

1. Amazon River Cruise

The Amazon River is located in South America and is the second longest river in the world, after the Nile River. It flows through Brazil, Peru, Colombia, and several other countries, and its basin covers an area of over 7 million square kilometers. The Amazon River is known for its immense size and is home to many unique species of plants and animals, including the Amazon River dolphin, giant otter, and several species of monkeys and birds.

This cruise is ideal for those looking for a truly unique adventure. It offers a chance to explore the Amazon rainforest, spot wildlife, and learn about the cultures and traditions of the people living in the area.

There are several cruise lines that offer Amazon River cruises. We recommend Aqua Expeditions. The cruise will begin in Peru and is considered to be a small group excursion. With an experienced naturalist onboard, you will learn about and get a close look at the biodiversity of the Amazon River.

2. Nile River Cruises

Taking in some of the most iconic sights in Egypt, the Nile River Cruise is a perfect way to explore the ancient wonders of the area. It’s an ideal choice for history buffs and those looking to experience the majestic river in its entirety.

Uniworld Boutique River Cruises offers Egypt River Cruises. If you travel on their ship, S. S. Spinx, you can choose one of their 42 staterooms, all with balconies. The ship, River Tosca, is twice as big but the passenger-to-staff ratio is almost 1:1. Whichever ship you decide to book, your cruise will be a culturally enriching adventure.

Viking Cruise Lines also cruises the Nile River. It is often considered a luxury cruise line because of its focus on immersive experiences, high-end amenities, and personalized service. You can appreciate the civilization that emerged along the banks of the Nile River as you cruise to and from Cairo. Experts in the history of the region will lead you from the pyramids to the temples of Luxor, and onto the desert outposts along the Nile.

3. Danube River Cruises

One of the most popular river cruises in Europe, the Danube River Cruise offers a chance to explore charming cities and stunning scenery. The Danube is truly the heart and soul of Central Europe. Highlights of the Danube River cruise can include the Iron Gate, Belgrade, Bratislava, Vienna, and more. Check out each cruise before booking as each cruise will stop at different ports.

Viking Cruise Lines is a popular choice for Danube cruises. With their destination-focused itineraries, Viking emphasizes cultural immersion and enrichment, with tours that highlight the history, cuisine, and traditions of the regions visited. There is too much to see and do as the waters of the Danube flow through 10 countries.

Uniworld also offers Danube River cruises. Their ships have local experts so you will get firsthand information on all of the grand experiences you should not miss. It is a high-end luxury line and is considered to be an old-world luxury in a modern setting.

Ama Waterways gives you many choices for Danube River Cruising. There are no “babies” allowed on the cruise under the age of 4 and some of the cruises are not available for anyone under the age of 12. In addition, some of their cruises are themed “adventures by Disney”.

This cruise line is also known for small groups. The maximum number of passengers on their ship, Ama Magna, is 196 with only 98 staterooms. This luxury cruise has spacious suites from 355 to 710 sq feet. Quite a difference from a large ocean cruise ship. It has all of the amenities you expect and want on a cruise.

Avalon Waterways is another cruise line that has small ships. The average number of passengers per ship is approximately 150 guests. However, their newest ship, The Avalon View, will sleep 166 guests in a total of 83 staterooms. Avalon Waterways touts itself as a “floating boutique hotel.”

4. Yangtze River Cruises

The Yangtze River is the longest river in China and the third-longest in the world. It runs from the glaciers of the Tibetan Plateau in the west, through the provinces of Qinghai, Sichuan, Yunnan, and Hubei before emptying into the East China Sea near Shanghai.

Cruising along the Yangtze River is one of the most popular tourist activities in China. There are dozens of stunning attractions along its banks, from the stunning, Three Gorges, to the picturesque bamboo forests of Leifeng. You can enjoy breathtaking views of the mountains and landscapes of the surrounding area. Visitors may also take part in cultural activities such as tai chi, tea tasting, and calligraphy. A cruise along the Yangtze River is a great way to experience traditional Chinese culture.

  • Several cruise lines offer Yangtze River Cruises, including:
    • Victoria Cruises
    • Century Cruises
    • Sanctuary Retreats
    • President Cruises
    • Yangtze Gold Cruises
    • Viking River Cruises

5. Mekong River Cruises

The Mekong River is one of the world’s most majestic waterways, winding its way through six countries in Southeast Asia. It is home to some of the most beautiful natural landscapes, vibrant wildlife, and exotic cultures.

For travelers looking for a unique adventure, a Mekong River cruise is an ideal way to explore the region. Along the way, you can discover the bustling markets of My Tho in Vietnam, explore the ancient temples of Cambodia, and admire the spectacular limestone mountains of Laos. During your cruise, you will be able to sample the diverse cuisine, learn about the local lifestyles, and take part in exciting activities like swimming and kayaking.

The Mekong River is also home to some of the most fascinating wildlife in the world, including the Irrawaddy dolphins and the rare Mekong giant catfish. A cruise along the river will give you the opportunity to spot these rare and amazing creatures in their natural habitat.

A Mekong River cruise is an exciting and unforgettable journey that will leave you with a richer understanding of the cultures and people of Southeast Asia. There is something for everyone on this amazing river cruise.

Viking Cruise Lines offers a 15-day cruise from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh City. You will enjoy the beautiful scenery as you travel through Asia. There are an array of activities and attractions to explore during the cruise.

Avalon Waterways offers a unique experience for travelers cruising the Mekong River. There are many advantages to taking a cruise on the Mekong with Avalon, from the small boats with modern accommodations to the guided excursions. You can relax around the pool or enjoy the spa. The local wildlife including the monkeys and the birds are amazing.

In Conclusion

These are just some of the best river cruises available around the world. Every river cruise offers something unique, so it’s important to do the proper cruise planning before choosing the right one for you.

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