4 International River Cruises to Add to Your Bucket List3 min read
What comes to mind when you think of a cruise? Probably days on end at sea, a few tropical excursions and an endless buffet. River cruises, however, provide a completely different experience for those on board. A river cruise is a leisurely way to travel, but still allows you to visit many destinations along the way—sometimes you’ll even stop at two ports in one day.
The European countryside is ripe with river cruising options, but there are many other international destinations hopping on board the trend. Here are some of the best river cruises to try around the world.
Rhine River, Europe
The Rhine River winds its way through a number of European countries, including Switzerland, France, Germany and Holland. Starting in the Alps, take a short half-day excursion from one of the city ports (choose from Amsterdam, Paris, Brussels, Budapest, Prague or Munich) or plan a multi-country adventure lasting multiple weeks for the adventure of a lifetime. The Rhine River boasts many of the world’s most historic sites and is perfect for exploring both the incredible nature of the European countryside and the culture, art, architecture and food of European cities.
Yangtze River, China
The 4,000 mile Yangtze River runs through many prominent cities such as Shanghai, Chongqing and Nanjing, as well as the scenic Three Gorges Dam. While cruising on the Yangtze, be sure to take an excursion on land in Fengdu to visit the “Ghost City” to see the Nothing-To-Be-Done Bridge and the Ghost Torturing Pass. Along the way, you’ll enjoy forested mountains and cliffs dotted with temples and pagodas. The best time to visit the Yangtze River is between April and October.
Nile River, Africa
The Nile is the longest river in the world, and one of the best places to cruise if you’re interested in history and archaeology. Plan excursions in Cairo and Giza to visit the Great Pyramids and the Sphinx, as well as a stop at the Valley of Kings and the Valley of Queens to see the tombs of royals such as Tutankhamen. Along the way, you’ll also be able to enjoy desertscapes, colorful villages and fertile farmlands and UNESCO world heritage sites.
Amazon River, South America
Cruising on the Amazon River, you’ll enjoy tropical rainforests, colorful birds, howler monkeys, pink dolphins and remote villages along the way. Be sure to explore the Sacred Valley of the Incas and Machu Picchu. Many Amazon River cruises employ guides who can help you trek through the undisturbed rainforest and understand the region’s history and culture. Try meeting with a shaman in a village along the river to learn about indigenous medicinal plants and traditional South American cuisine.