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Explore the Great Rivers of the World
Some of the world’s most fascinating cities – Budapest, Phnom Penh and Moscow, to name a few – can’t be found on an ocean cruise itinerary, as they are located well inland. However, all of these cities, and many more, are yours to visit on a river cruise.
Smaller than their ocean-going counterparts, ships used for river cruising are able to navigate under bridges and through narrow locks and canals. While the accommodations are very comfortable, you won’t find the number of dining and entertainment options – such as huge pools, casinos, or endless buffets – that are common on ocean cruise ships. Instead, river cruises are designed to focus on the ever-changing scenery and the places you’ll visit.
Three major destinations for river cruise enthusiasts are Southeast Asia and China; Russia and Ukraine; and Europe.
Southeast Asia’s Mekong River begins high in the Tibetan Plateau, but cruises of this river focus on the portion that runs through Vietnam and Cambodia. Stops along the way may include Phnom Penh, Cambodia’s capital; and My Tho, a busy river port near southern Vietnam’s capital, Ho Chi Minh City. Along the way, you’ll sail past rice fields, jungles, floating markets, remnants of the days of French colonization and much more.
A cruise of China’s Yangtze River provides insight into many different elements of Chinese culture. Port calls may include Jingdezhen, which has a centuries-old pottery industry; Shibaozhai, home to a 12-story temple on the banks of the river; and Fengdu, a city that dates from the Han Dynasty. Many itineraries include a side trip to Xian, where thousands of life-size terra cotta warriors guard the resting place of Emperor Qin Shi Huang.
Cruises of Russia’s Svir and Volga Rivers can take you from Moscow to St. Petersburg, stopping to explore provincial villages along the way. On a cruise of Ukraine’s Dnieper River, you can discover the palaces, monuments, and history of Kiev, Yalta, Sevastopol and Odessa.
The great rivers of Europe – the Danube, the Rhine, the Main, the Moselle and the Seine, to name a few – present a multitude of options for river cruises. From Paris to Prague, Amsterdam to Basel or Vienna to Budapest, a cruise of Europe’s interior will feature stunning scenery, marvelous traditions and modern attractions.
To find out more about all of your options for enjoying a river cruise, talk with your personal cruise expert.