Comfortable and affordable – river cruises have been growing in popularity as a perfect way to explore destinations often hard to access from land. Simply check in, unpack, and explore what your ship has on offer. And the offer is usually quite diverse.
What are the most popular river cruises among travelers? A survey by “USA Today 10 Best Readers” revealed the cruise lines that are the most favorite ones for their readers:
1. Viking River Cruises
2. Grand Circle Cruise Line
3. Uniworld Boutique River Cruise Collection
4. Avalon Waterways
5. American Queen Steamboat Company
7. Vantage Deluxe World Travel
8. American Cruise Lines
9. Pandaw Cruises
10. Blount Small Ship Adventures
The top river cruises include lines that sail European rivers as well as the American ones. Viking River Cruises mainly takes their passengers around Europe but also several Asian countries, Russia, and Egypt. The line operates more than 50 vessels, most of which are the Longships. These ships designed specifically for sailing rivers include comfortable and spacious outdoor seating, large windows in the restaurants as well as delicious meals.
The second most popular river cruise line is the American-owned Grand Circle Cruise Line. They sail privately-owned and chartered vessels and focus exclusively on the American market. The line caters to the over-50 travelers and offers mostly immersive excursions like home-hosted dinners and visits to local schools.
Uniworld Boutique River Cruise Collection took the third position in the survey. Their vessels and staff aim at offering luxurious and exceptional services. Passengers enjoy their tours on European and Asian waterways.
Not only big ship experience is sought-after these days. Avalon Waterways offers river cruises on small ships. The accommodation is luxurious and spacious including floor-to-ceiling windows. The USA-based cruise line offers a number of shore excursions including wine and beer tastings as well as various seminars.
Another American river cruise line is a newbie in the industry, yet reached the fifth position on the popularity scale. American Queen Steamboat Company launched their two ships in 2012. One of them, the American Queen, is the largest paddlewheel steamboat in the world and sails the Mississippi. The other one is the American Empress that takes the passengers down the Columbia and Snake Rivers. The price includes bike trips, shore tours, and dinner drinks.