Europe River Cruise

Experience Cruising to Colorful Cities--Our Visual Guide

Experience Cruising to Colorful Cities--Our Visual Guide

Experience Cruising to Colorful Europe Cities—Our Visual Guide

By Hank Schrader, USMA ’71, European Destination & River Cruise Expert

www.dreamdestinations.com

While a lot of folks who travel think about important landmark sites to visit in the various ports, many do not realize that a world of colorful cities are easily accessible by cruise ships and even riverships. 

So, I thought I might let you see some of the wonderful, colorful places we have been able to visit by either a cruise ship or rivership.

Ready?—let’s explore together!

What is the Best Europe River Route?

What is the Best Europe River Route?

What is the Best Europe River Cruise Route?

By Hank Schrader, USMA ’71, Europe Destination & Europe River Cruise Expert

www.dreamdestinations.com

The purpose of this blog is provide you a comprehensive guide of the available Europe River Cruise Routes, so you can decide on which route will be the best for your next Europe river cruise vacation.

Europe has the distinction of the continent with the largest number of navigable rivers compared to other regions of the world.  They are often devoid of major obstacles such as waterfalls and rapids, and are usually wide and deep enough to allow steady passage of people and material on all types of sailing vessels.  Combine the easy navigation with captivating sights such as castles, vineyards, capital cities and small, quaint villages and it is easy to see why folks would want to sail these amazing rivers!

We are often ask “Which river should we sail on for my first Europe river cruise?”  My short answer is take multiple trips--I would sail on all of them!  However, the problem is that most of us don’t have unlimited time and money to sail them all.

So to solve this dilemma, here is a guide to the European River routes most available to you.  I will describe the river, point out a couple of highlights and why you might consider sailing on this river.  The routes may be very short or may cover larger distances.  While there are some variations, many lines essentially cruise the same route on the most popular European river

Since most folks want to know what the best starting rivers are if they have never taken a European River cruise, by far the two most popular rivers are the Rhine and the Upper Danube, so let’s explore them first together.  Then will examine the remaining Europe Rivers you might want to consider for your vacation.

Ready?—Let’s cruise together!

What is the Best Europe River Cruise Company?

What is the Best Europe River Cruise Company?

What is the Best Europe River Cruise Company?

By Hank Schrader, USMA ’71, Europe Destination & Europe River Cruise Expert

www.dreamdestinations.com

Perhaps the most often asked question from our clients about Europe river cruising is “What is the best Europe River Cruise Line?  It is almost always followed by: Why is it the best?

So, I googled best Europe river cruise company and got some really interesting results.  The results were all over the place—incomplete lists, reader polls, cruise critic best list(s), and two good river cruise authorities who have some well-reasoned lists.

Why such varied results?  I just don’t think you can factor a best list without categories.  I also think you have to look for how objective these lists are—the source, their qualifications to review river cruise lines and their reasons to rank on line over another.

Another key factor, in my opinion, is that all river cruises are good vacations and how valid is a best company list?—Does it have any real meaning? 

Here is a key fact to support that argument—all of the 8 major lines I cover have good accommodations, free Wi-Fi, wine & beer with lunch and dinner, limited entertainment and tours included in their base fare. 

At the very least, all river cruise companies are on par with premium ocean cruise companies and with a few exceptions include more than the ocean cruise lines.  And, when you read my top 10 list below, you will see each of the 8 major lines I cover has at least one win somewhere on my list.

So, let’s examine my 10 best list and let me defend my selections.

River Cruise Vibes--What It's Really Like on 8 River Cruise Lines!

River Cruise Vibes--What It's Really Like on 8 River Cruise Lines!

River Cruise Vibes—What It’s Really Like on 8 River Cruise Lines!

By Hank Schrader, USMA ’71, Europe Destination & Europe River Cruise Expert

www.dreamdestinations.com

I am amazed at how much the Europe river cruise industry has changed when I originally wrote only a little less than 2 years ago.  Since 2009, I have studied Europe River cruising to learn all I could about the river cruise industry.  A few industry experts have tried to make comprehensive comparisons of the different lines.  Each has a slightly different approach. 

We have taken a unique approach by creating a PowerPoint presentation.  Our 86 slide 2019 Comparison Guide is very good but even that lacks one factor—the vibe of the line and its ships. 

The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines vibe as “the feeling that someone or something gives you.”  Basically, for this blog, it is the atmosphere, the conditions, the emotional connection you can expect on each line if you were to cruise on that line.

So, here goes—my evaluation of the vibe or feeling you will get on these 8 river cruise lines.

Our 5 Best Europe River Cruise Blogs

Our 5 Best Europe River Cruise Blogs

I have written 47 blogs about Europe River Cruising—this will be number 48.  So, after some refection, I thought I’d provide you what I consider the 5 Best Europe River Cruise Blogs we have written and see if you agree with me that there is value for you to read these blogs, with the goal of helping you to get a better understand of a Europe river cruise vacation and experience.

To organize my thoughts, I thought I would first provide you a little background about how I write and research these blogs, and the goals of the blogs.

I also want tell you about other blogs/websites/books that might prove valuable in your search for accurate information about Europe river cruises.

Next I will provide you my selection of the best blogs we have written.  In my selection process, I decided not to include company specific blogs or food, service or cabin blogs—these are great for more detailed looks at a specific company or aspect of Europe river cruises but not the best overall works about Europe river cruising.  For each blog, I will provide a summary of the blog and then tell you why it matters—and provide a link to the actual blog.

Ready, to learn more?—let’s GO!

Cruising the AmaKristina in December 2018

Cruising the AmaKristina in December 2018

Cruising the AmaKristina in December 2018

By Hank Schrader, USMA ’71, Europe Destination & Europe River Cruise Expert

www.dreamdestinations.com

As I began to write this, I’m on the AmaKristina on the Rhine.  It is our first trip on this river ship, but it already feels like home—we have sailed on 16 Europe river cruises and this is our 15th cruise with AmaWaterways (we are leading a small group on this same route this summer on the AmaSerna—there is still limited space available if you would like to join us—give me a call).

Much has changed since 2009 in river cruising—when we first started river cruising in Europe—and almost all is for the better.

This was a themed cruise—a Christmas Markets along the Rhine.  It is the most festive season in Europe and that is saying a lot, since Europeans walk and enjoy their cities almost every day of their lives and most everyone has visited these special stalls and enjoyed shopping, and eating Christmas delights and imbibe in the hot Gleuwein.

So, I thought I’d write about AmaWaterways and the Rhine River—one of the two most popular routes for river cruisers in Europe.

2019 Spring Europe River Cruises--It's Tulip Time!

2019 Spring Europe River Cruises--It's Tulip Time!

2019 Spring Europe River Cruises—It’s Tulip Time!

By Hank Schrader, USMA ’71, Europe Destination & Europe River Cruise Expert

www.dreamdestinations.com

I think the most overlooked Europe River cruises are spring time cruises at the beginning of the river cruise season.

There some very unique opportunities to see sights in Europe many do not get to see or only are available in the spring and that is the focus of this blog—the unique spring time cruises—it does not cover the early season cruises on the more popular river cruise routes.

So, let’s learn together about these cruises by getting a short overview of the major sights in these low country cruises and then learn a little more about the exact offering of each of the major 8 river cruise lines that market to the US

Want a Million Dollar Trip for $15,000 or less?—Try a Europe River Cruise!

Want a Million Dollar Trip for $15,000 or less?—Try a Europe River Cruise!

By Hank Schrader, USMA ’71, Europe Destination & Europe River Cruise Expert

www.dreamdestinations.com

I write all the time about Europe river cruising and its value.  While some would say it is not the best luxury travel option money can buy, I disagree.

So, let me defend my thoughts—is it really a million dollar trip for less?

Why Buy a Europe River Cruise from Us?

Why Buy a Europe River Cruise from Us?

Why Buy a Europe River Cruise from Us?

By Hank Schrader, USMA ’71, Europe Destination & Europe River Cruise Expert

www.dreamdestinations.com

There are about 75.000 to 100,000 professional travel agents in business in the United States.  There are also the giants of the internet (Travelocity, Expedia, etc.) and wholesalers (Costco).  You can also buy direct from many travel vendors.  To be sure, you the consumer, have a lot of choices and ways to buy travel.

With the plethora of options, it got me to thinking—Why should you buy a river cruise or for that manner, any travel from us?—from Anne & Hank Schrader, of Visit Dream Destinations, LLC!

You Should Become Part of the AmaWaterways Family

You Should Become Part of the AmaWaterways Family

I was at a meeting the other day, and one of my best friends and a very good client, remarked he had just received the new River Banks Magazine from AmaWaterways and saw his cruise director featured in the magazine.  He told me, “I’m glad I am part of the AmaWaterways family.”

This is not an unusual reaction or statement! Let’s explore why this special company makes folks feel part of the family—how can they create an experience so special folks want to be known as members of the family?

How to Get the Right European River Cruise for Your Next Vacation

How to Get the Right European River Cruise for Your Next Vacation

Every time we plan a river cruise vacation, in some form or another, we have several steps we go through to get the right match for our clients.  Our goal is to get our clients the best river cruise trip possible, based on what is most important to them.

In broad terms there are really 5 factors we consider.  So, let’s explore these factors together to help you get the best possible river cruise for your next trip.

Our Travel Video Website Page

Our Travel Video Website Page

Our Travel Video Website Page

By Hank Schrader, USMA ’71, Europe Destination & Europe River Cruise Expert

www.dreamdestinations.com

A unique feature of the content on our website is the Travel Video Page.Most travel agencies post video made by others or shoot small snippets of a tour or ocean liner or rivership.We have taken a different approach—each video is a collection of our pictures put together in a video slide show.