Which river cruise lines best for slow walkers?

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St. Louis, MO, USA
4,581 Posts
Joined Jan 2002
Last summer we did our first river cruise with Emerald Waterways on the Rhine River. I had read that they had gentle/slow walker tours in the ports. The first true walking tour had both groups but the slow walker group finished first! Their guide was funnier and everyone in that group really loved him. Whereas in my group, the lady just went over far too many mundane details and talked to long so that tour finished later than the slow walker tour!

Gate 1’s River cruise information is the same for every single river and cruise. It says their walking tours last 3 to 4 hours and are moderately active. I would think that on a tour that long there would be times when there may be a bench nearby or some place for a few to sit while the guide is talking. Or perhaps a stop for a beverage or, like in our case last year, cake! I am aware that you can’t use a scooter on a river cruise boat. That’s fine, and my husband was able to handle the steps on the boat and can handle a flight or so of steps, and can step up on curbs, etc. so I would love to hear from anyone who may not always be able to handle a 3 to 4 hour moderately active walking tour who has been on a Gate 1 River cruise. Also any suggestions for other mid range to budget river cruise lines that would be suitable would be welcome.

Thanks for any info!
Coastal GA USA
23,774 Posts
Joined Nov 2007
You will reach more river cruise experts if you ask on the River Cruising forum here...EM
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St. Louis, MO, USA
4,581 Posts
Joined Jan 2002
I did that Before asking on here. I was afraid asking on that board they would tell me to ask on the Board for disabled travel. Thank you anyway.
San Diego, CA, USA
4,672 Posts
Joined Jul 2001
You might want to go with a river cruise line that doesn't include shore excursions, and plan your own. On example is Teeming: https://www.teemingrivercruises.com/

Last spring I went on an AMA cruise and there was a man who had had a stroke and used a cane aboard, but had brought a lightweight scooter with him. He used this ashore with the crew totting the scooter to shore for him while he laboriously climbed up and down the stairs required to cross other boats to/from shore. It was a little scary going on some of the "slow walker" tours with him as the scooter was fairly tippy on cobblestones, and he and his wife turned back part way through some of the walks that we took. They could have done the same with a manual wheelchair (not a transport chair) if she had been able to push his chair for him. For bus trips, he was able to load the scooter into the luggage bay of the bused used by AMA.
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Honolulu, HI, USA
1,479 Posts
Joined May 2003
In my Viking River cruises - three of them - the Viking people divided the cruisers into three
"families" the third being the slowest (which I was a member) - and the families would board the same buses and walked together as a group.
St. Louis, MO, USA
4,581 Posts
Joined Jan 2002
I was barely able to talk my husband into using a scooter on board what was at that time still the largest cruise ship in the world, Harmony of the Seas. Even then, only on the ship. No way would he agee to a wheelchair. I know, I know 🙄, but . . .! Thanks for the info everyone.
Displaced New Yorker
15,842 Posts
Joined Nov 2006
Interesting info about the scooter and the river cruises. I called at least 4 lines and they told me I couldn't bring my Travelscoot onboard because it has a lithium battery. Funny, because I take it on the plane.
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