River Cruises: 8 Scenic Trips Minus the Mega Ships

by Libby Zay Subscribe to Libby Zay's posts Posted Apr 20th 2011 12:30 PM


Cruising doesn't have to be all about a week in the Caribbean on a monster city at sea. Who really needs to play mini golf or go rock climbing while setting sail, anyway? For a less intense overwater getaway, turn to river cruises. With less-crowded waters and shore excursions to intimate places, it's no surprise passenger numbers are up 15 percent annually on river cruises.

But, with 165 major rivers in the world – and countless more minor ones – choosing the right one can be intimidating. From a tour of French canals on a converted cargo ship to an Amazonian adventure through the flooded forests of Brazil, we've narrowed down eight of the best river cruises on the water.

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Michael C

Libby Zay is a wonderful writer and provides entertaining yet valuable information for trips. Thanks for posting this great story.

September 22 2011 at 4:57 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Check out facebook.com/uniworldrivercruises and uniworld.com for more information on Uniworld's river cruises and to chat with past guests of Uniworld on Facebook for advice. There's also a discussion page on facebook.com/uniworldrivercruises.

May 24 2011 at 8:31 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I am not sure if i like megaships or small cruises better

April 27 2011 at 4:13 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

My Husband and I did this cruise a few years ago all the way to Budapest. It was without a doubt the best cruise ever. The mega ships are O.K., but this has been the best of all.

April 25 2011 at 2:13 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I'm sure you would.....

April 25 2011 at 9:04 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I wouldn't go on a cruise if you gave it to me for free, big septic tank that floats and all the fat asses who go because it's all you can eat. GROSS!!!!

April 25 2011 at 6:11 AM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply

I have taken over 25 cruises on mega ships all over the world. Just took my first river cruise down the Danube. No comparison. Just absolutely loved it and can't wait to take another one.

April 25 2011 at 6:09 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I found the Viking River Cruises voyage of around 1,000 miles from Moscow to St Petersburg to be perhaps the best cruise that I ever took. We visited towns on the Volga River where there were old Russian Orthodox Churches that we visited and we were treated to singing because no musical instrument other than the human voice is permitted.

April 25 2011 at 5:12 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to nalogan's comment

I have just completed the 12-day Imperial Jewels cruise on the Viking Emerald. Our tour guide was amazing, the tours were most enjoyable and edifying, and the ship was lovely. The food and service far exceeded our expectations, as did the tours of the Forbidden City, a Beijing Hutan, Tianenmen Square, the Summer Palace, the Great Wall, and the Peking Opera. We were awed by the Terra Cotta Warriors at Xi'an and are now in Shanghai for a two-day tour of the old city and its museums before returning home. I will absolutely cruise Viking again - and they usually have a two-for-one deal, which makes it a bargain.

April 25 2011 at 6:13 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

its a amazing place . i would love to take a trip if igot chance.

April 25 2011 at 4:16 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

We've been on many river cruises and loved them. The Danube, Rhine and Volga rivers were terrific. The price on our last Uniworld river cruise on the Rhine was $2,100.

April 25 2011 at 3:39 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply