The difference between luxury river cruises and regular river cruises is mainly
can be found in the size of the boat. Luxury river cruises
will usually be ships that hold just over 200 passengers
and have more extra space for additional amenities like
a full-service restaurant or larger passenger bedrooms.
Luxury European river cruises and luxury cruises to any
destination will be all inclusive, so you will have your
food and room all paid for with the price of your cruise
ticket. Day trips and tours at ports-of-call are usually
not included in your cruise ship price, so expect to pay
for any extra tours on your own. Although you can book
these types of tours in advance, you can also book them
as you go, leaving you free to choose what you want to
do on the day you actually do it. Basic cruise tips and
information for first-time cruisers is applicable for
both river cruises and ocean cruises.
Luxury European River cruises can be found in France, Germany, Amsterdam,
and more, along such popular rivers as the Rhine
River, the Elbe River and the Swan River in Australia.
These Europe river luxury cruises combine elegance with
visits to the mainly small towns along the river's
edge. Although these towns are accustomed to cruise traffic,
they are nowhere near as traversed as the larger oceanic
cities and ports. For many travelers, this is an advantage
in that the "touristy" feel is removed, revealing
more of the country's true culture and more chances
to truly experience a particular country.
Europe river luxury cruises will usually have just one main restaurant for eating breakfast, lunch and dinner. Usually, you will have an "assigned seat" in the dining room for meals, and will maintain this seat for the duration of your vacation. As such, you will eat with the same people and have the same servers during your vacation with the aim of making guests feel comfortable over the course of their trip. Trouble with your seating arrangements should be handled with the maitre d' or headwaiter as soon as they arise.
Even luxury European river cruises will not offer an exorbitant amount of evening entertainment like some of the huge oceanic cruises do. Since you will be close to cities and towns throughout most of your river cruise, this is left to the actual cities. Crew members will, however, be able to offer tips for things to do on land and tours to take, as well as ideas for shopping and dining throughout Europe as you go along. Entertainment onboard most Europe river luxury cruises will be relegated to smaller rooms with possible live music, or common areas for having a cocktail and chatting with other passengers.
Comparatively, river cruises tend to be tamer than oceanic cruises and offer a slightly different flavor of travel. River cruises give seasoned cruisers a chance to forego the major ports-of-call that they may have already seen many times and focus on inland attractions. River cruises are also a great introduction to cruising in general for first-time cruisers and are often less expensive than larger cruise vacations.