How are Ocean Cruises Different from River Cruises?

When selecting the right cruise for you, it is useful to note that while river cruises are related in many ways to ocean cruises, there are also some big differences. boat-828659__340.jpg Normally, ocean liners are more spacious and provide more stateroom comforts. Many more people can journey on them thanks to their more substantial size. On river ships, because there are not as many guests, the vibe is more familiar and you have more opportunity to really get to know fellow travelers.

In contrast to ocean cruises that might include numerous sea days, you will rarely experience a full day of sailing on a river cruise.

Usually, passengers awaken each morning to find themselves in a new place.

The perception of exploring new areas is also felt while the ship is traveling since the outside view is constantly shifting.

If you are nervous you might become seasick, a river cruise is the way to travel, since land is always visible nearby, the water is not deep, and the sailing is normally without any turbulence. Yes, ocean cruises tend to offer more upscale benefits like fitness centers, numerous dining options and a range of live entertainment. But river cruises are nice in that they give you inclusive pricing that includes water, alcoholic beverages, Wi-Fi, and even some fun tours off the ship.

River Sailing on Europe’s Celebrated Rivers

Enjoy the voyage of a lifetime cruising along Europe’s most famous rivers.

Traveling by ship is a distinctive way to experience the wonders of rivers such as the Elbe, Rhine, Loire, Danube, Duoro, Volga, and Dnieper. These small, elegant floating hotels are not only safe but are also known for their customized interior décor, unparalleled service, world-class amenities, luxuriously appointed staterooms, superb cuisine, entertaining live performances, state-of-the-art technologies, and fascinating excursions.

These features create an environment that is elegant yet intimate and serene.

Itineraries are tailored to optimize the amount of time travelers spend at their destinations. People get to experience the local lifestyle of each port when they take part in these excursions. Put your finger on the heart of the continent’s great cities and experience it through the stories revealed by its artists, history and culinary delights.

Where To Travel On A River Cruise

The only thing more breathtaking than going aboard one of these vessels is stepping off.

A different range of adventures comes with each European river cruise. Open yourself to new encounters and new worlds by traveling one of Europe’s great waterways. You will gather wonderful insights into Europe’s dynamic cultural centers, its historic treasures as well as its charming vistas.

These luxurious vessels are the perfect size to maneuver into the smaller harbors and ports closest to the most notable attractions and town centers. Sail one of France’s many beautiful rivers and allow it to take you to some of the country’s most prized places. From the famous food of Lyon and Bordeaux’s most renown wineries, to the elegance of Paris and Provence, to the historic sights of Normandy, France provides a world of experiences.

Aquitaine, once upon a time one of Europe’s most powerful kingdoms, holds pretty vineyards, farmland, and forested areas as well as picturesque ports of call. You can go Cognac tasting at the Camus distillery in Périgord and perhaps go hunting for its celebrated truffles.

Some of the finest oysters in the world come from Arcachon in southwest France. Sample the delicious red blends crafted in the distinguished wineries of Saint-Émilion and Médoc or sample the decadent sweet wines of Sauternes.

Whichever river you choose for your cruise through France – the Gironde, Seine, Rhône, or Dordogne -- the country’s interesting history, spectacular art, and delicious food culture will delight. Cruises on the Elbe River go into Germany and the Czech Republic on a journey lined by ancient fortifications and medieval villages. If you like German wines, choose a voyage on the Mosel River, whose French name is Moselle, as it travels through the part of Germany that crafts world-class Riesling. hydrofoil-4005106__340.jpg In Central Europe, Danube River cruises take passengers to alluring Old World cities like Budapest where you can soak up the steam in a traditional banya (thermal baths) or Vienna where you can master the waltz, a dance which gained popularity in the ballrooms of the Austrian court.

Foodies will love the Austro-Hungarian culinary pleasures, while wandering adventurers might prefer to have time in some lesser-known cities such as Passau or Bratislava. In Russia you will not want to overlook the glorious cathedral of St. Basil’s or the captivating architecture of Moscow’s historic Red Square. In Russia, be sure to have some time at the magnificent Hermitage Museum, which in addition to being an awe-inspiring edifice, is the second largest sized museum in the world.

Visualize Peter the Great luxuriating in massive Peterhof Palace, then see how numerous families shared living space at a Soviet-era kommunalka. And last but not least, don’t neglect to taste some Russian delicacies like caviar and blini pancakes, borscht, pirog, or solyanka.

Numerous peoples had a role in the story of the Dnieper River: Russian, Ottoman, Jewish, Cossack, Greek, Tatar, and Mongol. There are fantastic museums and ancient churches to tour at various stops along the way as well as imposing Soviet-era structures, or for a lighter experience get tickets to an engaging local dance or musical show. In Portugal you can cruise the Douro River to the capital city, Lisbon, with its charming old town and thriving newer neighborhoods with trendy restaurants, bars, and cafes. Wine aficionados will want to stop in the scenic vineyard region to sip local wines, while the typical foods and fado singing will be a delight for all.

A designated UNESCO site, the Douro River Valley was additionally the first demarcated wine production zone in Europe and the world. After first checking out the gorgeous Nordic region, head to the Rhine River and all it has to do and see. Follow ancient Viking footsteps by embarking in Bergen, visit the breathtaking fjords and the quaint village of Flåm, wander the old town in Kristiansand with its wooden houses, and finally make your way to the more modern but no less interesting cities of Oslo and Stavanger. Art aficionados will want to stop in Denmark’s coastal community of Skagen, once summer home to the legendary group of Scandinavian artists known as the Skagen Painters, as well as Amsterdam to see the many masterpieces there, before heading to Kinderdijk to see the charming windmills of Holland.

In Germany, sample local beer and visit the spectacular ancient cathedral in Cologne or take a tour of the enormous Ehrenbreitstein Fortress. The picturesque Middle Rhine, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is well worth a visit with its imposing cathedrals, immense fortresses, ancient villages, and rich history.

Experience France’s multicultural Strasbourg and Germany’s storied Black Forest before disembarking in cultured Basel. Nothing onboard is cookie-cutter, so your experience onshore shouldn’t be either. Dive right into the distinct aspects of each fascinating stop along the way. Just as each cruise vessel is created to be a unique and special experience, each destination is similarly unique and special.

River Cruises Gaining in Popularity

There is a popular expression that the road best travelled is actually a river. Vacationers are increasingly selecting river cruises over other vacation options. Moreover, this type of cruising offers more amenities than ever before. Travelers have enjoyed all types of cruises for a very long time, but traveling by river is growing more widespread, as it allows passengers to visit many areas without having to be on the open ocean.

European cruises receive travelers from lots of other countries, since they appeal to so many distinct types of people.

In addition, river cruises have some advantages over ocean cruises. They make it easy for people to enjoy the sights more closely and in-depth. River boats are much more humble in size than the average ocean cruise ship, giving them a more intimate feel.

Even the most sizeable river vessels usually hold fewer than 200 guests, who enjoy excellent service from the greater ratio of staff to passengers. Though they have to be more modest in size than ocean cruisers to navigate in the narrower rivers, the comfort they offer is on par. For instance, some of the premium vessels offer their guests a swimming pool and a modern spa area, as well as panorama windows, or even private balconies.

Travelers certainly like the relative efficiency of river cruising.

Even your arrival at the airport will be smooth, as someone will be there ready to get you to the vessel. At ports, you just walk off the vessel and into town – no waiting in lines to get off. You just have to unpack your bag one time, and every day you will wake up in a different destination.

Ship contractors in Europe also gain from growing numbers of travelers. Vessels that are already in employment often necessitate repairs or upgrades, and new ones are being commissioned on a fairly regular basis. The marketplace has been demanding that the standards for river cruise lines become more and more luxurious.

They need to be more contemporary regarding both design and technology, with better and better luxuries and amenities. The acceleration of work presents ship builders with a challenge to keep up with needs. As is the situation in ocean cruising, river cruising has also had to get more and more ‘green’.

New and improved technologies have helped this to take place: improved water and energy-saving systems, cutting-edge particulate filter systems, shore-based power supplies, and better systems for recycling and waste elimination.

Shore-based power supplies are a particularly beneficial new technology that will go a long way towards preserving the environment. With this machinery in place ships in port can significantly reduce their overall nitrogen emissions by turning off most of their engines when they are at rest.

However, river cruises offer still more perks than those. Considering that cruising along a river usually happens at a relatively slow rate of speed, people on board get to spend more time diving in to the local activities and lifestyles along the route. You might shop with the chef at a market in Burgundy and then dine on regionally-inspired delicacies that evening or get a glimpse of gypsy heritage at a classic Hungarian dance performance along the Danube. River cruises are the way to sail if you are looking for a greater knowledge and experiences of local cultures.

Travelers worried about becoming seasick should choose a river cruise rather than an ocean cruise. There is virtually zero potential of becoming seasick on a river because they don’t have waves and the relaxing, slow float doesn’t rock the boat. Moreover, on a river you can continuously see the shore on both sides, so individuals who do not like the concept of open stretches of water will be more at ease. Traveling on a river gives you a relaxed and worry-free way to really experience close at hand the sights and sounds of distant places.

The higher demand for river cruises brings with it more types of travelers. Retirees tend to dominate the lengthier trips, while younger guests are more typical on shorter voyages of a week or less. There are cruises that cater to a wealthier audience with luxury and class, and others that have a more relaxed vibe great for families.

One final thing to keep in mind when booking a cruise, whether it be a river cruise or an ocean cruise: it’s a smart idea to purchase travel insurance. Cruises generally require payment in advance, and this will safeguard your investment.

With so many excellent features, it’s no shocker that river cruises have grown to be such a popular way to travel and visit the world. It’s certain to be a development that won’t slow down anytime soon.

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