The popularity of river cruising has exploded, making it the hottest trend in travel.
Why is river cruising so popular? River ships are like stylish self-contained inns that often visit several countries in just a few days. You unpack only once, and the dress code is far more casual than ocean cruises, with no formal nights. The on-board atmosphere is friendly and relaxed – never stuffy; but the service is impeccable. Your ship docks right in town, and you can step off and mingle with locals or head off on organized tours of museums, monuments and other must-see attractions. There is time to bike, hike, and absorb the local culture.
What are the differences between river cruising and ocean cruising? River cruises focus more on ports. These ships carry no casinos and offer little in the way of evening entertainment. River ships seldom carry more than 175 passengers, so there is no dealing with crowds. Almost all cabins have outside views, and the chance of sea sickness is virtually zero.
River cruises are much more inclusive than ocean cruises. Shore excursions, wine and beer with dinner, soda, and bottled water are usually included in the fare. There is often free internet and frequently an open bar. At first glance, river cruises can seem much more expensive than ocean cruises, but you need to take a minute to realize what is included in your river cruise fare that that you would receive a bill for on your final night of an ocean cruise.
European cruises are currently most popular. The European season runs March through December, beginning with Tulip Time and ending with the Christmas Markets. Other sought after destinations include Russia's Volga, China's Yangtze, Egypt’s Nile, the Mekong, and the Mississippi. Specialty themed cruises are growing in popularity. Wine cruises are hosted by wine professionals, offer instruction in wine history and culture, and feature vineyard visits and dining with special wine pairings. Adventures by Disney and AMAwaterways have joined to offer itineraries specifically designed for families. Especially popular with West Michigan travelers are the Tulip Time cruises.
Summer and early fall are the most heavily traveled seasons for river cruisers. Early spring, late fall, and the holiday season sailings are during shoulder season and offer fewer crowds and savings. Experienced river cruisers tend to book their trips far in advance, so call your travel consultant and schedule your trip as early as possible to ensure a wider array of choices.
Like ocean cruises, each river cruise line has its own personality. Your Breton Travel consultant help you match your personal definition of a dream vacation to the river cruise line and itinerary perfect for you. In other words, Breton Travel will customize your vacation. After all you work hard and you deserve it.
With all these benefits, it’s easy to see why river cruising has become so popular. We suspect it is a trend that won’t slow down anytime soon.