As an alternative to conventional European land tours, you'll travel though the heart of Europe aboard a luxurious floating hotel. Relax as you glide past quaint villages, lush vineyards and sparkling European cities. These vessels offer the ultimate in style and comfort on cruises from seven to twenty-one nights duration along Europe's legendary Danube, Elbe, Rhône and Saône, Rhine, Moselle, Main and the new Rhine-Main-Danube canal.
The inland waterways of the world are piled with dozens of river boats and luxury hotel barges offering the best in creature comforts. With all the advantages of a cruise ship (unpack once, fare includes food and entertainment), you'll cruise by small villages and lovely countryside, pulling into major cities. Here, you can explore on your own or purchase a shore excursion. Cruise the picturesque countryside through the canals and rivers of France, England, Holland and Scotland, never leaving the comforts of your luxury hotel. Barge cruising is a wonderful way to capture the true essence of rural Europe with new and exciting destinations each day. Hotel barges offer opulent private cabins, comfortable lounges and enjoyable sundecks, perfect for viewing the passing scenery. In addition, excellent regional cuisine and fine wines are served daily to enhance the overall cruising experience. Freedom of choice and individuality have always been part of the barging experience. The fact that barging holidays can be all things to all travelers is one very good reason for their 30 years of success. Abercrombie & Kent offers the finest fleet in Europe, including canal barges and river cruisers, hotel vessels and intimate charters, and a choice of five European destinations. Specialty cruises, such as family departures; walking/ biking and barging combinations; antiques, fine arts, gardens, opera, and culinary cruises are offered throughout the season, which runs from March to November. In addition, most barges have bicycles on board, and some have a selection of golf and/or tennis equipment available to try your hand on the courts and courses along the way. All hotel barges can also be privately chartered.
'Libellule' - 20-passenger hotel barge in the Champagne region of France
'Litote' - 20-passenger hotel barge in the Northern Burgundy region of France
'L'Abercrombie' - 22-passenger hotel barge in Central Burgundy, France
'Lafayette' - 22-passenger hotel barge in Lower Burgundy, France
'Chanterelle' - 24-passenger hotel barge in the Loire Valley, France
'Lorraine' - 22-passenger hotel barge in Alsace, France
'Caprice' - 22-passenger hotel barge in the Franche-Comté and Eastern Burgundy
'Hirondelle' - 8-passenger hotel barge in Burgundy and Franche Comte, France
'Alouette' - 6-passenger charter barge in Burgundy and Franche Comte, France
'Fleur de Lys' - 6-passenger charter barge in Burgundy, France
'Napoleon' - 12-passenger hotel river cruiser in Provence, France
'Marjorie II' - 8-passenger hotel river cruiser in Holland and from Paris to Auxerre, France
'Actief' - 11-passenger hotel river barge on the Thames, England
'Princess Royale' - 22-passenger hotel barge in Holland and Belgium
'Roi Soleil' - 6-passenger charter barge in Provence and Canal du Midi
'Scottish Highlander' - 8-passenger hotel barge in Scotland
'Shannon Princess' - 12-passenger hotel river barge in Ireland
'Mirabelle' - 24-passenger hotel barge in Southern Burgundy and Eastern Loire.
'Chardonnay' - 50-passenger hotel river cruiser in Saone/Burgundy
If you've avoided taking a cruise because it seems that non-stop dining and entertainment are the principal attractions, consider a Norwegian Coastal Voyage. There is only one route, along a spectacularly beautiful 1,250-mile coastline, through 600 islands between Bergen and Kirkenes, a few miles from the Russian border. With 34 ports of call, the Norwegian Coastal Voyage is a lifeline along a stretch of coast characterized by vast distances, a sparse population and dramatic scenery. There is an air of history about the Norwegian Coastal Voyage. It has always been a part of coastal life, has always arrived at the ports and has always been there to rely on for more than 100 years. The ships take children to their christenings, newly-weds on their honeymoons and carry milk and vegetables to remote island communities. The northbound voyage takes seven days, southbound six and the round-trip in 12; ports visited at night in one direction are daytime stops in the other. The Norwegian Coastal Voyage is a unique combination of first-class passenger ship and working ship. The fleet comprises 11 ships, many of which were built since 1993. It is the perfect alternative to the traditional cruise for the independent, seasoned traveler. Six new vessels cover the journey, each accommodating fewer than 500 passengers. Cabins have two lower berths, bathrooms with shower and nice furnishings. Breakfast and lunch buffets are plentiful featuring lots of delicious Norwegian specialties; dinner is a set meal. Works by recognized artists have helped the new ships gain renown as floating galleries. Enjoy a panoramic view of ever-changing, breathtaking scenery from the comfort of a deck chair or a chair in the lounge.
River Cruises & Rafting
We can think of no more interesting way to see Russia than by boat. On the river steamers that cruise between Moscow and St. Petersburg you can avoid skyrocketing hotel prices and to some extent, the risk posed by urban criminals, and you will encounter any number of delightful and unexpected attractions. You'll cruise Europe's longest river, the Volga, its largest lake, Lake Ladoga, and the world's longest man-made canal, the Volga-Baltic. Most such expeditions take 14- 16 days and include about three days each in Moscow and St. Petersburg as well as daily stops in small towns and villages—a wonderful opportunity to see how people are adjusting to the changes brought about by the country's political and economic upheavals.
Rafting in the Grand Canyon is another way to enjoy a river.
Recreational river running in Grand Canyon has come a long way since the 1930's and it has grown tremendously in popularity. Today, Grand Canyon's professional outfitters work in partnership with the National Park Service to provide the public with a wide breath of safe, educational, and enjoyable Grand Canyon river experiences. Modern safety equipment and a host of resource protection strategies are used to make sure the public has access to one of the world's truly spectacular natural wonders while at the same time protecting that resource for the future.