Wednesday, April 18, 2012

River Cruising - The Hottest Craze in Cruising

River cruising is becoming the hottest trend in traveling. It is becoming so popular that many river cruise companies are ordering new ships to accommodate the influx of passengers looking for new itineraries and experiences.

Once a niche product, river cruising is becoming extremely attractive to cruise clients who have been on most of the traditional cruise itineraries. With the lack of new cruise ports that clients haven't already sailed to, river cruising offers a very different experience than ocean cruising. Passengers love the fact that you don't just "visit" a destination, you "experience" it.

If any of you remember the movie from the 1960's "If it's Tuesday it Must Be Belgium", where the movie follows a group of tourists on a whirlwind 18 day sightseeing tour of Europe, you can now do a similar itinerary on a river cruise and pack and unpack once and have a much more leisurely experience. Unlike an ocean cruise, as your ship cruises rivers, you will actually have a view as your ship meanders up and down the scenic rivers. You'll cruise through the heart of small towns and villages. You may see castles shore side. Wave to residents from your balcony. Your ship will be docked overnight, allowing you to immerse yourself into the culture of the town, having dinner and perhaps sipping coffee at an outdoor cafe.

You are also more immersed in the culture of the countries you visit on a river cruise. On most river cruises, excursions are included and usually beer and wine. You receive more value for your money. Off the ships there are walking tours, food tastings, and many cultural excursions. Ama Waterways ships have bicycles on board that passengers can take right off the ship and explore the small towns the ships stop at.Ships are smaller and more intimate than traditional cruise ships. Most have balconies or Juliet balconies. While long ago river cruise ships were bare bones and basic, today's ships have cabins that are 50% larger, anywhere from 140 feet and up (200 square feet in some ships), luxurious accommodations and great cuisine. These ships are floating boutique hotels.

Variety is the biggest draw of river cruises - wherever there is a river, you can usually find a cruise. From Russia to the Nile River to a safari river cruise in Tanzania, there is something for everyone. How about Holland during tulip season? Or a Wine Cruise through Europe?

Themed cruises abound. Besides Wine Cruises. how about Tulip Time Cruises, Europe's Rivers and Castles, Black Sea Voyages or Provence and Spain? These are a small sampling of the many different types of river cruises available.

What won't you have on a river cruise? If you like the hot lights of Broadway type shows, gambling, games, huge pools - you may not enjoy a river cruise. Ships are more elegantly appointed with much smaller guest numbers - some ships accommodate less than 200 people.

Are you ready to book? Contact us - 516-608-0568 - to find the best river cruise for you!

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