Planning your next holiday? Instead of packing your bags for that tiring road trip or shuttling through cumbersome airport security, visualize yourself on a one-of-a-kind river cruise across the Mississippi River or through the glaciers of Alaska. Sailing through scenic landscapes and navigating the many different waterways of North America can be exciting, special, and quite unlike any other holidays you’ve taken so far. Check out some of the best riverboat cruises that you can take:
Alaska’s Glaciers and Whales cruise
One of the most sought-after river cruises in the country is to Alaska. The 8 days and 7 nights Alaska’s Glaciers and Whales cruise offered by USA River Cruises is exceptional and proves to be truly unforgettable. The prices start from about $5,400 for couples and from around $7,000 for solo travelers. The cruise covers the following areas:
Hiking the terminal moraine of Baird Glacier is not a chance everyone gets, but this cruise makes it possible. You also get to tender through Tracy Arm as icebergs float around you to give a scenic view, with waterfalls. All this comes with a chance to view wildlife like sea lions, whales, arctic terns, eagles, sea otters, and harbor seals. What’s more, you can come back to the ship for a hot dip after a day spent enjoying the mesmerizing views.
At Le Conte, the mudflats can be walked through to take a closer look at the icebergs. Also, you can skiff through to the icebergs in high tide. At Ideal Cove, you can choose between boardwalk trials and paddle boarding.
The fifth night on the cruise is a visit to a native village for dancing and traditional storytelling. Kayaking in the Saginaw Bay follows this session, where you might spot orange-billed surf scoters. Hikers also have the option of accompanying a guide on an off-the-map venture.
Bushwacking or kayaking is also available along the shores of the Baranof Island. The farewell dinner of the cruise is held at the beaches of the island to provide a special closing to the tour.
Cruise aboard the Columbia Queen
You can enjoy breathtaking riverscapes along Columbia and jet boat rides along the Oregon-Idaho border into Hells Canyon on the Columbia Queen cruise by the American Cruise Lines. It boasts one of the most environment-friendly and modern small cruise ships and riverboats is certainly worth every penny you spend. Fitted with a host of amenities, state-of-the-art navigation, and safety equipment to meet world-class standards, this fleet of cruise ships provides panoramic views of nature with their glass-enclosed dining salons.
The 9-day cruise aboard the Columbia Queen from Oregon to Washington State is a feast for your senses. You can simply put your feet up and relax on your private balconies as you enjoy unobstructed views of the picturesque backdrop.
On your arrival in Oregon, you can explore the city and enjoy your stay at the luxurious Historic Multnomah Hotel.
On the second day, at the majestic volcanic Mount St. Helens National Volcanic Monument in Washington State, the effect of the eruption in 1980 can be seen as you enjoy a meal at the Hoffstadt Bluffs restaurant. A late afternoon journey to the Columbia Queen will begin the cruise through Willamette River Valley of Oregon.
The next day will be a visit to Astoria, the oldest American settlement west of the Rockies, and a host of impressive history museums and art centers. The Columbia River Maritime Museum features the finest shipwrecks and lighthouses of the country on display. In addition to all this, you can also walk the shoreline of Cannon Beach.
A day is reserved to enjoy the view of the spectacular 80-mile Columbia River Gorge, a 4,000-feet deep canyon that marks the state line between Oregon and Washington. A trip to the unrivaled Columbia Gorge Discovery Center ought not to be missed when you take this river cruise. A dramatic change in scenery from shoreline cliffs to mountains and waterfalls is indeed mesmerizing!
The Multnomah Falls that plunges from a height of 620 feet is absolutely magnificent to watch! No wonder then that this is “the most-visited natural recreation site in the Pacific North-west.”
You can enjoy the abundant wildlife and incredible views of Hells Canyon and also the rugged, snow-capped mountains near Timberline Lodge on this cruise.
It is important to keep in mind that while riverboat cruises offer a range of activities to keep you well occupied throughout your journey, they also present a relaxed environment for your body and mind to rejuvenate. Serenity or adventure, whatever it is that you revel in, river cruises are sure to provide you with the best of both to ensure that you go on a memorable vacation.