Posted August 6th, 2014, 08:00 AM
1) Where to cruise. There are many great rivers to cruise on. Most of the river cruise companies will have each cruise listed on their websites. There are many cruises in central Europe on the Rhine and Danube, which go through Netherlands, Germany, Austria, Hungary and more countries down to the Black Sea.
There are great cruises in France on the Rhone (SW France), which we have done and loved it, as well as the Seine (think Paris). Then you will find the Douro river in Northern Portugal, Russian River cruise from Moscow to St. Petersburg (we did that one, it was great). Also, there are river cruses in China, Burma, Vietnam and Brazil (Amazon).
Whatever you choose, you will enjoy.
2) Which cruise line. There are many and you will find reviews under member reviews. I suggest comparing what you receive in tours, meals and pre and post river cruises with the competition. We first discovered river cruises when we received a brochure from Viking. However, I researched several companies, Uniworld, Avalon, Viking, Vantage, AMA and Grand Circle.
I discovered significant price differences from the cruise lines.
Our first river cruise was in Russia and we picked Vantage, due to price and what it offered, like five star hotels in Moscow and Saint Petersburg, instead of fighting traffic from the port to city center. We later took a wonderful Vantage trip to China that included a four day river cruise. Again, Vantage had the best product for the money, beating Viking.
We also, too a Rhone/Saone river cruise with AMA in SW France and loved it. We picked the cruise because of the timing. AMA is great, but tends to be a bit more expensive.
Here are my reviews of our river cruises:
Russia, Kiev and Baltics
AMA Rhone River