River CruisesConsulting

River cruising, especially in Europe, has become very popular with Americans in the last 10 years. It's a great way to visit the cities along the rivers and, like all cruising, you get to take your hotel (and all your stuff) with you.

History - river cruising has been popular in Europe for many years. When Americans first started to experience it they found the cabins to be small, smoking was everywhere, most announcements were in a foreign language, and most of their traveling companions could not speak English. Today, ships are new, cabins are larger, many lines cater almost exclusively to English speaking people (Americans, English, Australians, and Canadians), smoking is limited to outside deck areas, and announcements are exclusively in English.

Companies - there are really four companies involved in the European river cruise market with two others that would be classed as luxury options - Viking (probably the largest), Uniworld, Avalon (part of Globus), and AMA Waterways.  The luxury lines are Scenic and Tauck.  While Viking is the largest (in the number of ships) in Europe it is also the "mass market" line. Uniworld claims the "Boutique" river cruise space. The decor of their ships will remind you of a very nice Bed and Breakfast. Avalon and AMA Waterways boast new ships with larger cabins, modern decor, and a healthy collection of amenities.

With just a CLICK you can visit Avalon Waterways website. They do an excellent job of explaining the river cruise experience through videos and pictures. You can also see and price their various itineraries.

Itineraries - the ships sail all the rivers of Europe - the Rhine, Danube, Seine, and others.  You visit cities such as Amsterdam, Budapest, Cologne, Nuremberg, Paris, Prague, and Vienna as well as small medieval towns that grew up along the rivers.

Additional Information

Click the buttons below for more information on Small Ships.


We publish a monthly
newsletter packed with travel information you can use - special trips and prices, destination reviews, and much more!




Don't worry -- your e-mail address is totally secure. See our privacy statement (link below)

River Cruise Research

We have arranged special websites that allow you to do more research on your own. They are carefully selected for complete and clear information. Just click on the name. Give them a try!

Avalon Waterways

AMA Waterways

Signature River Cruising

Great American Steamboat