A wonderful Way to explore European countries is to take a cruise along one of the beautiful rivers. River cruises throughout Europe are available on multiple rivers, including; the Danube River, Douro River, Elbe River, Main River, Moselle River, Rhine River, Rhone River, Saone River, the Seine River, and a few others. There are multiple cruise lines that offer itineraries on one or on several rivers in Europe. A little information about European cruise lines can be found below. Please note that pricing classifications are as follows; budget prices usually average $45-$130 per day and per person, first class prices usually average $80-$275 per day and per person, and deluxe pricing usually averages $100-$400 per day and per person. Most river cruises are a minimum of 7 days and a maximum of about 23 days.
–Avalon Waterways began in 2003. They offer over 300 European itineraries and cover each of the rivers mentioned above. Avalon is known mostly for their Open-Air Balcony system. They advertise spectacular views that are easily visible through the wall to wall, and floor to ceiling windows. The atmosphere on their 16 ships is comfortable and relaxed, as they strive to make each guest feel special and pampered. Avalon Waterways’ pricing falls into the deluxe category.
-AmaWaterways began in 2002. They offer about 150 itineraries on all of the above listed European rivers, also. Thirteen ships provide the river cruises for this fine cruise line. AmaWaterways is well-known for their fine dining experiences; in fact, they were the first cruise line that was acknowledged by the La Chaine des Rotisseurs, which is the largest and the oldest culinary society in the entire world. Pricing for this cruise line falls into the deluxe category.
-Uniworld River Cruises began in 1976. This cruise line offers about 100 itineraries and covers all of the rivers mentioned above, along with a few others throughout Europe. This cruise line markets themselves as being a “boutique” provider, which means that everything they strive for, on their 13 ships, is above and beyond the norm. This is a luxurious cruise line, and they pride themselves on having the highest staff-to-guest ratio among all river cruise lines. Their pricing falls into the deluxe category.
-Emerald Waterways began in 2013. They offer approximately 80 itineraries on several of the European rivers that are mentioned above. The six vessels that are operated by Emerald Waterways are sleek and contemporary. They aim to please the crowd that enjoys a minimalistic style, while enjoying lovely on-board attractions, too. The pricing for this cruise line falls into the first class and deluxe categories.
-Viking River Cruises began in 1977. They have about 50 itineraries that operate on all of the rivers listed above, as well as a few others. They boast approximately 60 vessels that have a Scandinavian-type design. Many refer to this company as the World’s Leading River Cruise Line, as they strive to provide elegance and intimacy to all who board their ships. They have activities that promote education on geography, culture, and history to all of their guests. The pricing for Viking River Cruise Line falls into the deluxe category.
-Abercrombie & Kent began in 1962. This unique company has about 25 itineraries on multiple rivers throughout Europe. An interesting fact about this company is that they promote small-group cruises, where they accommodate a maximum number of 24 guests per cruise. They strive for stylish traveling experiences, and focus on luxury, culture, wildlife, and history. They operate 6 vessels, and pricing falls into the deluxe category.
-European Waterways began in 1977. They have approximately 10 itineraries and they service a few European rivers, as well as canals and small waterways, due to the fact that all of their 18 vessels are barges. This company provides a unique, slow-paced cruising experience for the traveler who is interested in some “off the beaten path” discoveries. The pricing for this cruise line falls into the deluxe category.
-G Adventures began in 1990. This is a unique, small-group tour company that has about 5 itineraries on a few rivers in Europe. They pride themselves on being a sustainable company that promotes traveling lite and carefree. This is the only company on our list that falls into the budget category.
-Cruise & Maritime Voyages began in 2010. This company has 2 itineraries. They have a cruise on the Danube River and one on the Rhine River. The two vessels that this company has, for river cruising, aims to give pleasant surroundings, food, and entertainment to all of the guests. The pricing for this cruise line falls into the deluxe category.
-CroisiEurope began in 1976. They have approximately 160 itineraries on multiple rivers around Europe. They are one of the largest river cruise lines in Europe, as they have about 40 ships. CroisiEurope prides themselves on providing great service, fine food, and having a lot of experience, since they are also one of the oldest river cruise companies. Their pricing falls into the first class and deluxe categories.
-Scenic began in 1987. They have about 125 itineraries on multiple rivers throughout Europe. They boast a 5-star fleet of “Space-Ships”, that are complete with new technology and modern-day amenities. The pricing for this cruise line falls into the deluxe category.
-Tauck World Discovery began in 1925. They have about 55 itineraries that can be found on the Danube, Rhine, Rhone, Seine, or the Moselle Rivers. The fleet of 10 ships provide upscale, comfortable accommodations for travelers. The pricing for this river cruise line falls into the deluxe category.
-Crystal River Cruises began in 2015. They have about 40 itineraries on the Danube, Rhine, and the Main Rivers. Their fleet of five sleek vessels, which they use for river cruises, are luxurious and aim for a “home away from home”. Pricing for Crystal River Cruises falls into the deluxe category.
In conclusion, you may see from the information above, that if you are thinking about a European river cruise for your next vacation, you may have quite a lot of research ahead of you, as you decide which destination and which cruise line is best for you. There is a wide variety of places to visit and discover, as well as different types of vessels to board for your holiday destination. Happy shopping as you further your search for the best fit for your next European river excursion.