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No need to drive, navigate a map, cook, clean or even make your own bed, your days are your own, to do as much or as little as you like.
> Learn more about River Cruises
Avoid constant unpacking and repacking. The only time you’ll be seeing your suitcase is the morning you board and the day you depart.
3. The scenery always changes
The views change daily from your stateroom, the restaurant, the lounge, the deck…. Better yet, you’ll go to bed in one port and wake up in a brand-new one.
4. Suites are huge
As roomy as a hotel room, the space is ample for two. The bathrooms are generously sized; enough to swing a cat and a couple of kittens too. Most ships have balconies or wall-to-wall panoramic windows; you’ll awaken to natural light and the river gliding past the foot of your bed.
5. Food, glorious food
Fresh Italian coffee with breakfast? Of course. There’s also a continental buffet and a team of chefs to whip up your eggs. Lunch is light (great if you’ve just gobbled a framboise tart from the patisserie) and often alfresco for sun-soaked refreshment. Dinners, albeit smart-casual, are elegant and a la carte.
Excursions every day; the likelihood of a new port every morning; no heavy road traffic. You see a huge amount in a short timeframe. Uncover region upon region of fascinating history, while tasting gourmet food and observing the local way of life.
Ditch the car and don’t worry about Google Maps. Travel from A to B with ease and in comfort. Navigation is no longer your concern, but the captain’s.
Much more petite than their ocean-cruising big brothers, passenger numbers are smaller on a river cruise. The on-board ambience feels like a community of like-minded globe-trotters.
With guest numbers ranging between 130 and 170 there’s no hiding amidst a sea of faces. Dining is a particularly sociable affair and guests are encouraged to sit at a different table each evening.
Unlike a self-organised holiday, no time’s wasted tracking down taxis, negotiating fares, or organising transfers. It’s already done. Feeling parched after a day of sightseeing? There will be iced drinks and cold towels on your return. In dire need of a cup of tea? Someone’s already squeezing your Dilmah.
Excursions are usually morning or afternoon, with a return to the ship for lunch, but there’s no pressure to join . Take some time to relax on the ship’s deck, visit the spa or go for a run in the gym. Sit and catch a few rays, or book yourself an appointment at the salon — a new do for dinner is always nice.
There are no jazz hands here. River cruise entertainment usually includes on-board lectures (destination history, WWII experts), nightly movies and the relaxing medley of a pianist.
RIVER CRUISING - A FEW OF OUR FAVOURITES
History has never looked quite as beautiful as it does from Amsterdam to Budapest. The old taverns tell a story while the merchant houses store secrets; gothic architecture astounds and romance prevails. Bygone residents have all left their stamp, but they also left good wine, beer and coffee.
Forge a path towards the Mediterranean, gorging on French cuisine as you glide between château and township. Feast on gooey fromage in Lyon, the gourmet capital of the world, while navigating the Rhône to the Côte d’Azur. Balmy nights and bouillabaisse await.
Discover Russia’s countless iconic landmarks from a unique vantage point. From the grandeur of St Petersburg and Moscow, to small villages with gingerbread style houses, you can even learn the language while on-board — Удачи!! (good luck). Fortunately, the vodka should help.
For a cruise few others think about, travel from Vienna to Romania via fascinating Eastern European destinations such as Serbia, Hungary and Bulgaria. You’ll see ample fortresses and impressive castles while appreciating a beauty that lives in the shadow of Western Europe.
> More on Europe's best river cruises
Let's start planning your river cruise! Visit your local House of Travel store, call us on 0800 713 715.
View more at https://www.houseoftravel.co.nz/holidays/cruise/river-cruises
> Check out other European cruises offered by House of Travel
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