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TOP 5 RIVER THEME CRUISES

TOP 5 RIVER THEME CRUISES

Don’t you love traveling with people who share the same interests as you? And what if the entire cruise itself was centered around your hobbies or passions? Well, that’s what a theme cruise is all about. We’ve found that although there are holiday, wine and culinary theme voyages on European river cruises, the biggest selection of theme cruises is right here at home in America. In fact, American Queen Steamboat Company offers a wide selection of theme trips on its Mississippi River cruises.

While we enjoy any river theme cruise, our favorites are tied to the holidays, history or the life and traditions of the river. Here are our Top 5 River Theme Cruises:

PLANTATION HOLIDAY MARKETS

Amid the glittering elegance of an American Queen holiday cruise is a seasonal spirit larger than life. Experience the best of the Antebellum south during a magical time of the year and delight in all of your favorite holiday treats while getting acquainted with the classic traditions of the Cajun and Creole cultures. Christmas markets are the perfect venues to listen to holiday music while browsing seasonal goods and the all-American southern artistry of local craftsmen. Enjoy an enchanted experience at Nottoway Plantation, where you will enjoy live music and dancing, indulge in an assortment of hors d’oeuvres or decadent desserts and witness the ceremonial lighting of bonfires on the levee followed by a special fireworks display.

MARK TWAIN

Discover America Mark Twain-style from the perspective of the river. After all, it’s along the great Mississippi and its tributaries that Mark Twain discovered his own undying fascination with and love for America. Many would argue that Samuel Clemens, best known by his pen name Mark Twain, is quite simply one of America’s greatest authors. On a magnificent journey along the Upper Mississippi River, delve deep into the life and work of Samuel Clemens and witness his legendary words and wit brought to life onboard by an expert tribute artist who will leave you with the lasting impression that you just had an in-depth conversation with the legendary author himself. We love American Queen Steamboat Company because they include hop-on hop-off tours that allow you to explore Twain’s childhood hometown of Hannibal, Missouri; the town from where much of the inspiration for his beloved classics such as The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn is derived.

BOURBON

A bourbon-themed cruise offers you a rare opportunity to experience an extraordinary journey through America’s heartland and into the roots of Kentucky’s bourbon region. This special themed voyage will take you behind the scenes and into the history books to show you where bourbon comes from, how it is made and the ways to distinguish the unique characteristics of different distilleries. While onboard, you can enjoy all things bourbon with special tastings, treats, and cooking demonstrations. Both onboard and ashore, each day presents an eclectic blend of music with special performances, creative workshops and a wealth of enrichment that can’t be found anywhere else.

CIVIL WAR

Civil War-themed cruises take you on an amazing journey where historic skirmishes pitted brother against brother in a nation once divided. You will have the opportunity to delve into the tactics, both military and political, that shaped the events of the American Civil War. Learn of the Mississippi River’s strategic value as both a transportation and communication route and explore the state of the country as it was in 1866 and how it still affects us today. Watch tribute artists bring key figures to life and listen to distinguished Civil War historians offer enlightening lectures on a multitude of Civil War topics. Join a thought-provoking journey designed to broaden your knowledge and provide insight surrounding the times and the causes that precipitated the conflict. Each Civil War voyage pays tribute to our American history in reminding us all of the fallen soldiers who gave their lives in a war that changed our nation.

ANTEBELLUM SOUTH

Experience authentic Southern culture as you journey through living history along the Lower Mississippi River, where it is easy to imagine that time has stood still. From the early 1800’s until the Civil War, the country’s economy began shifting and a cotton boom made plantations the center of southern commerce. With its rich soil, warm climate and ample moisture, the land is among the most fertile in the world and agriculture flourishes. From New Orleans to Baton Rouge, all along the great River Road, sugar cane is still grown as it was a century ago. In the late 1800’s Mark Twain noted on his adventures down the mighty Mississippi that there were so many plantations and dwellings along the river that it looked like a spacious street. Towering homes lay nestled in large patches of moss-draped oak trees and, still today, you can catch a glimpse of what Mark Twain once saw as you cruise along the River and then tour historic locations and iconic plantation homes.

Isn’t it about time you stopped dreaming of an American river cruise and hopped aboard a theme voyage on a Mississippi River cruise? Select Waterways are your river and small ship cruise insiders, specializing in European river cruises, including Danube River cruises, Rhine River cruises, wine cruises, Seine River cruises, as well as China river cruises with Yangtze river cruises, Vietnam river cruises with Mekong River cruises, Russia river cruises with Volga river cruises, Nile river cruises, Africa river cruises and Amazon river cruises. Naturally, we have American river cruises with Mississippi River cruises, Ohio River Cruises, Columbia River cruises, Illinois River cruises and Tennessee River cruises. We also offer expedition cruises and small ship cruises throughout the world, with polar cruises such as Arctic cruises and Antarctica cruises among the most popular. Whether it’s luxury river cruising, premium river cruising, expedition cruising or small ship cruising, we’ve got you covered. Visit our website at www.selectwaterways.com or give us a call at 1.844.SWCRUISE (1.844.792.7847). Be sure to join our Insider Club by clicking here and Like our Facebook page by clicking here.

THE JOY OF WINE CRUISES

THE JOY OF WINE CRUISES

If you’re looking to elevate your next Europe river cruise, consider a wine cruise. One of our favorite choices is AmaWaterways on a voyage that encompasses a Rhine River cruise, Danube River cruise, Seine River cruise or even a Douro River cruise.

Immerse yourself in the many flavors of Europe on one of AmaWaterways’ unique wine cruises, which let you add a unique, epicurean dimension to a European river cruise. Like our standard river cruises, guests have the opportunity to join tours that highlight the famous sights in each port of call. These special itineraries, however, offer guests a perfect blend of wine-related experiences and excursions in grand capitals and charming towns. You’ll taste local cuisine, discover how wine is made and, of course, partake in tastings — all at no additional cost. Whether you have a seasoned appreciation for fine wine, or simply indulge in a sip here and there, this is a wonderful way to uncork the traditions of the local culture and learn about the region you’re visiting.

Delectable cuisine and fine wine abound on these special cruises, both on board and ashore. While on the ship, you’ll enjoy wine tastings led by a wine expert. You’ll also indulge in award-winning cuisine paired with hand-selected, premium wines. There are plenty of varieties, and you’ll have the opportunity to try different selections every day. And then, of course, there are exclusive excursions designed to bring the rich wine history and culture of Europe to life. You’ll visit private cellars, renowned wineries and stunning vineyards where more tastings and pairings await. All this while discovering all the wonderous sights and landmarks along the way.

Each wine cruise is hosted by a qualified wine expert, who usually brings hand-selected wines on board that are served during meals and at tastings. Some wines come from the expert’s own winery and other varieties are sourced from local wineries located along the cruise itinerary. The wine expert will recommend food and wine pairings, lead discussions and hold tastings during your cruise. They will talk all things wine and provide insight into different varieties.

Ready to savor the myriad delights of a wine cruise? Select Waterways are your river and small ship cruise insiders, specializing in European river cruises, including Danube River cruises, Rhine River cruises, wine cruises, Seine River cruises, as well as China river cruises with Yangtze river cruises, Vietnam river cruises with Mekong River cruises, Russia river cruises with Volga river cruises, Nile river cruises, Africa river cruises and Amazon river cruises. Naturally, we have American river cruises with Mississippi River cruises, Ohio River Cruises, Columbia River cruises, Illinois River cruises and Tennessee River cruises. We also offer expedition cruises and small ship cruises throughout the world, with polar cruises such as Arctic cruises and Antarctica cruises among the most popular. Whether it’s luxury river cruising, premium river cruising, expedition cruising or small ship cruising, we’ve got you covered. Visit our website at www.selectwaterways.com or give us a call at 1.844.SWCRUISE (1.844.792.7847). Be sure to join our Insider Club by clicking here and Like our Facebook page by clicking here.

A NEW VIKING SHIP FOR EGYPT

A NEW VIKING SHIP FOR EGYPT

Viking River Cruises is expanding its Egypt cruises program for the 2020 season, which will include the launch of a new ship. Inspired by the design of the award-winning Viking Longships and built specifically for the Nile River, Viking Osiris is currently under construction and will double the company’s capacity in Egypt when it debuts in September 2020. Also launching in the next year are two new Pre-Cruise Extensions designed to enhance guests’ base knowledge of Egyptology prior to arriving in Cairo. These five-day extensions to Viking’s Pharaohs & Pyramids itinerary will provide guests with privileged access to archives and exhibits in London and Oxford that are not normally accessible to the public. This announcement comes just one year after the company launched Viking Ra, a completely renovated vessel and Viking’s first owned and operated ship on the Nile.

Hosting 82 guests in 41 staterooms, Viking Osiris will be a state-of-the art ship with the clean, elegant Scandinavian design for which Viking is known. It will join the company’s other ship on the Nile, Viking Ra, which launched in 2018. Viking is the first and only Western company to build, own and operate ships on the Nile.

Building on the success of the Oxford & Highclere Castle program – Viking’s highest-rated Pre/Post Extension that visits “The Real Downton Abbey” – the company has applied the same degree of thought to two new curated Pre-Cruise Extensions that allows guests to retrace the steps of the world’s most famous Egyptologist, Howard Carter, and his benefactor, the 5th Earl of Carnarvon. Guests on the five-day British Collections of Ancient Egypt extension will meet their Viking Tour Director, an expert Egyptologist, in London and experience two museums: first a private, early morning visit to the Egyptian Collection at the British Museum before it opens to the general public – and then a visit to the home and personal museum of world-renowned architect Sir John Soane, where the tour will be illuminated by candlelight, a re-enactment of how Soane entertained guests and showcased his exquisite collection of Egyptian antiquities, including a 3,000-year-old Egyptian sarcophagus. Guests will also visit London’s Petrie Museum, which houses more than 80,000 artifacts from ancient Egypt and Sudan. In Oxford, guests will visit the Ashmolean Museum, one of the oldest in the world, and home to a varied collection of Egyptian mummies and art – and go behind the scenes at Oxford University’s Griffith Institute, where they will enjoy a Privileged Access visit to see Carter’s archives, which detail the discovery of Tutankhamun’s tomb. Lastly, guests will have an opportunity to visit Highclere Castle – the country seat of the Earl and Countess of Carnarvon – and enjoy an exciting opportunity to view the earl’s magnificent private collection of Egyptian artifacts.

During the 12-day Pharaohs & Pyramids itinerary, guests experience Egypt’s cultural treasures in seven destinations. The Nile River cruise begins with a three-night stay at a first-class hotel in Cairo, where guests can visit iconic sites such as the Great Pyramids of Giza, the necropolis of Sakkara and the Mosque of Muhammad Ali. Guests will then fly to Luxor, where they will visit the Temples of Luxor and Karnak before boarding a Viking river ship for an eight-day roundtrip Nile River cruise, featuring special access to the tomb of Nefertari in the Valley of the Queens, and excursions to the Temple of Khnum in Esna, the Dendera Temple complex in Qena, the temples at Abu Simbel and the High Dam in Aswan as well as a visit to a colorful Nubian village, where guests can experience a traditional elementary school. Finally, the journey concludes with a flight back to Cairo for a final night in the ancient city.

Select Waterways are your river and small ship cruise insiders, specializing in European river cruises, including Danube River cruises, Rhine River cruises, wine cruises, Seine River cruises, as well as China river cruises with Yangtze river cruises, Vietnam river cruises with Mekong River cruises, Russia river cruises with Volga river cruises, Nile river cruises, Africa river cruises and Amazon river cruises. Naturally, we have American river cruises with Mississippi River cruises, Ohio River Cruises, Columbia River cruises, Illinois River cruises and Tennessee River cruises. We also offer expedition cruises and small ship cruises throughout the world, with polar cruises such as Arctic cruises and Antarctica cruises among the most popular. Whether it’s luxury river cruising, premium river cruising, expedition cruising or small ship cruising, we’ve got you covered. Visit our website at www.selectwaterways.com or give us a call at 1.844.SWCRUISE (1.844.792.7847). Be sure to join our Insider Club by clicking here and Like our Facebook page by clicking here.