Best River Cruises Tour Companies

Search 93 River Cruises tour operators and travel companies, with 115 reviews.

93 Travel Providers meet your criteria (Providers 1 to 20 shown)

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Uniworld

5.0 | Excellent
100% Recommend
Asia Europe
Total Trips 97 Trips
Average Price $ 410 per day
Size Regional Expert
Service Level Standard
Operator Type River Cruise Line
Tours in River Cruises 90 Tours in River Cruises

Stride Review Uniworld Boutique River Cruise Collection, part of the giant Travel Corporation umbrella of tour companies and cruise lines, is a luxury, all-inclusive line offering itineraries on a total of 22 rivers in 29 countries worldwide. What Makes Uniworld Stand Out? Uniworld provides the pinnacle of luxury river cruising. They are known for their attention to detail, and extremely warm and attentive customer service. Traveling with Uniworld is to enter another world and experience the joy and comfort that comes with unpacking once, and really catering the journey to your pace. Many excursions are available during the cruise, as well as top line on-board activities and dining. Like other Travel Corporation brands, Uniworld contributes to the not-for-profit TreadRight Foundation, which works to promote sustainable tourism projects worldwide. Who Will Enjoy Traveling With Uniworld? Uniworld is perfect for those travelers who are looking to relax, only upack once, and can somewhat cater their experience once aboard the river cruise - enjoying as many or as few port excursions (extra fee) or simply exploring on your own before it’s time to leave port. River cruising with Uniworld is a luxurious experience. Staff are attentive, everything is crisp and clean, and much attention to detail is paid to make sure your experience on board is enjoyable and every possible need is met. It’s a “dress for dinner” kind of experience aboard Uniworld. Where you can enjoy fine wine, food, and appreciate a bit of a throwback feel. During the days many active travel opportunities can be found such as cycling and walking tours, or if you prefer you can dial it down to enjoy at your own pace. Travelers are often older, in the 50 plus range, many couples, and some friend groups. Top Destinations? Destinations include a number of European rivers as well as those in Russia, China, Vietnam, Cambodia, Egypt, and India (India cruises begin in 2016, aboard the new Ganges II Explorer). Uniworld Travel Style Uniworld ships average a maximum of 130 passengers, and the staff-to-guest ratio is very high. The line is noted for its service and cuisine and has won numerous industry awards. All-inclusive pricing includes unlimited beverages aboard, shore excursions and gratuities, with just a few exceptions. Why Choose a Cruise with Uniworld? If you’re looking for a top of the line luxury travel experience on some of the world’s most picturesque rivers, then Uniworld is a fantastic option. These trips are best suited for active older travelers. There are many excursions available and the amenities on board, service, and culture all create an unforgettable luxury river cruise experience. Tweets by UniworldCruises

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Viking River Cruises

3.9 | Great
71% Recommend
Rivers & Seas Asia Europe
Total Trips 18 Trips
Average Price $ 302 per day
Size Global Operator
Service Level Luxury
Operator Type River Cruise Line
Tours in River Cruises 17 Tours in River Cruises

Stride Review Founded in 1997 as a line offering Russian river cruises to Europeans, Viking expanded to the North American market in 2000.  What Makes Them Stand Out? Since 2007, Viking River Cruises has zoomed from carrying one-fifth to one-half of all passengers in the fast-growing European river cruise market. Not only is Viking the world’s largest river cruise line with some 66 ships now in service around the globe, but the line is operating at near full capacity in Europe, with many itineraries sold out months in advance. Who Travels With Them? They cater primarily to “culturally curious” English-speaking Americans, Canadians, British, Australians, and New Zealanders aged 55-plus. (Think sophisticated viewers of PBS’ “Downton Abbey,” which its helps to sponsor.) Where Do They Operate? Besides European rivers such as the Rhine, Danube, Moselle, Seine, Duoro, and the waterways of Russia between Moscow and St. Petersburg, Viking now cruises three rivers in Southeast Asia -- the Yangtze, Mekong, and Irrawaddy -- and along the Nile in Egypt. Why Travel With Them? While they may not rank as the most luxurious river ships, many of Viking’s vessels are sleek, innovative, and freshly minted: the line has added 18 new ships in 2014 alone. Overall, Viking has established a reputation for offering an incredible value - high-quality service, food, and guided shore excursions at competitive prices, all adding up to strong repeat customer loyalty rates.

Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more

Avalon Waterways

4.8 | Excellent
98% Recommend
South America Asia Africa Europe
Total Trips 246 Trips
Average Price $ 339 per day
Size Global Operator
Service Level Luxury
Operator Type River Cruise Line
Tours in River Cruises 188 Tours in River Cruises

Stride Review Part of the Globus family of travel brands since 2003, Avalon Waterways has proven to be one of the more innovative of the many river cruise companies now in operation. Its newest “Suite” ships feature “open-air balconies” with floor-to-ceiling windows that open up to serve as indoor-outdoor seating areas, which don’t cut into cabin space as do normal balconies -- meaning you have more room to move around. Bathrooms are also roomy. What Makes Avalon Waterways Stand Out? While global in scale, Avalon Waterways is best known for offering high-end cruises on brand new ships on European rivers. The oldest of the 15 Europe-based ships dates from just 2008, which makes it the youngest fleet of any size on European rivers. Newer ships generally mean that staterooms are larger and amenities are enhanced. Who Will Enjoy Traveling with Avalon Waterways? While the majority of river cruise travelers are in the 50-plus range, more and more middle aged couples have been enjoying river cruises as well. Avalon is a good place to start, particularly for the more exotic destinations like the Mekong in Asia or the Amazon in South America. Travelers seeking a luxury minded cruise experience, without an overly pomp and circumstance feel, will love cruising the world’s rivers with Avalon. If you’re wary of river cruising as an extension of the “floating hotel”, Avalon makes sure that a focus on the region itself is felt onboard as well as through the port excursions. Local ingredients are used to make traditional dishes, and beer, wine, and spirits of the area are also showcased. Casual and comfortable, combining a relaxed atmosphere with a fine dining calibur food and wine, Avalon presents a quiet elegance without being stuffy. Travelers who like choice will appreciate Avalon’s numerous options when it comes to port excursion activities. Starting in 2019 and unlike many cruises, a majority of these excursions will be included in the price.   Top Destinations Avalon is well known for their Europe cruises, but they travel all over the world as well.  They have five ships in Asia (sailing the Yangtze, Mekong and Irrawaddy rivers), and one ship each in the United States (the American Queen, which sails the Mississippi) and South America (the Aria, which plies the Amazon). Avalon runs small-ship cruises through the Galapagos Islands as well. Avalon Waterways Travel Style The comfort of their passengers is top of mind for Avalon. Whether this means the spacious viewing deck or numerous excursions available to satisfy different interests. There is a sense of casual elegance that Avalon portrays. The culture on board is professional while still friendly, and the furnishings are not overly opulent. Another thing that makes Avalon stand out is their attention to staying active and healthy. They have been a frontrunner in river cruises providing bikes and other ways to be active in each port stop. Why Choose a Cruise with Avalon Waterways? Avalon Cruises are comfortable, fun, and active. This is the perfect choice of cruise company for older affluent travelers seeking top notch river cruise experiences around the world. Considering the spaciousness and innovativeness of its cabins, the fact that shore excursions and multiple dining options are included in the rates, and a chance to take advantage of some attractive early-booking discounts, Avalon can offer excellent value.

Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more

Grand Circle Cruise Line

3.4 | Average
58% Recommend
Central America & Caribbean South America Rivers & Seas Asia Africa Europe
Total Trips 7 Trips
Average Price $ 197 per day
Size Global Operator
Service Level Standard
Operator Type Small Ship & Expedition Cruise Line
Tours in River Cruises 6 Tours in River Cruises

Stride Review Grand Circle Cruise Line is a family of Grand Circle Corporation, a global enterprise. What Makes Grand Circle Cruise Line Stand Out? It offers a value small ship cruises and river cruises for travellers seeking to discover their destination. The trip duration ranges from 5 to 30 days and its fleets cabins and other features are designed to meet American taste. Who Will Enjoy Traveling with Grand Circle Cruise Line?  Grand Circle Cruise Line caters exclusively to older Americans Top Destinations While the Grand Circle Cruise Line offers their small ship cruises globally their river cruises are focused on Europe. Grand Circle Cruise Line Travel Style It focuses on providing value tours by having low per diems and yet focuses on providing rich experience through inclusion of local program directors and activities that deeply engages in discovering the culture of the destination. Why Choose a Cruise with Grand Circle? If you are looking for an enrichment tour that gets you in-depth knowledge of culture, history and traditions of the destination you are travelling to and are open-minded to try new things then Grand Circle Cruise will be a perfect solution.

Premier
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Tauck

4.7 | Excellent
95% Recommend
North America South America Rivers & Seas Australia & Pacific Asia Africa Middle East & North Africa Europe Antarctica & the Arctic
Total Trips 385 Trips
Average Price $ 535 per day
Size Global Operator
Service Level Standard
Operator Type Mixed Land & Cruise
Tours in River Cruises 77 Tours in River Cruises

Stride Review Founded in 1925 by Arthur Tauck, the company has blossomed from a New England motor coach tour agency to offering trips throughout the world -- by land (including rail), sea, and sometimes by air (private air charters, helicopters). But it remains a Tauck family-run business, now in its fourth generation. Quick Facts Founded in 1925 Luxury travel with a friendly touch Small groups, large groups, river cruises Solo friendly Average tour price is around $6,000 p/p Unique partnerships: BBC Earth, offering science themed nature tours, Ken Burns journeys in the US What Makes Tauck Stand Out “No grouches or pessimists” was the plea in a 1920s newspaper ad for a small tour group. From that small automobile taking curious, adventurous New Yorkers along dusty roads through beautiful New England, Tauck has come a long way, now offering guided tours throughout the world. They look upon their legacy with immense pride, as well they should. Arthur Tauck was an immigrant who pulled himself up by bootstraps and engenuity, and his name represents a supreme, classic and classy tour experience.   Tauck is a long-established high-quality tour operator with a strong reputation as one of the top companies offering upper-mid-range to luxury group travel and river cruises for the 50+ crowd. While its staple has been European and North American land tours, Tauck has been increasingly expanding into special family trips, exotic locations, and recent award-winning European river cruising. Who Will Enjoy Traveling with Tauck? Pricing is virtually all-inclusive -- no additional options that can run up costs are offered during the trips, yet this is not a place for the true budget traveler. Though they offer several different types of tours, from family vacations to river cruising, attracting and serving a diverse customer group, the legacy of tradition and comfortability appeals largely to older and middle aged travelers. Solo travelers are very welcome on Tauck trips, and pay a low single supplement. Numerous specifically solo friendly tours are offered. You’ll meet romantic singles, or simply independent minded travelers, of all ages. Large family or friend groups could find a great fit at Tauck. Particularly because if your group is 11 people, the 11th travels for free! Because of Tauck’s impressively wide reaching themes and styles for families, having several different ages will be easier to entertain than they might be with other companies. They even have dedicated “family river cruises”. So if you’re considering a multi-gen family reunion or have a large group of friends with various ages, Tauck could be a good choice. Top Destinations Tauck destinations include all seven continents -- so whether you're trying to plan an Iceland vacation or looking to take a trip to Canada, consider Tauck! Special themes may include food and wine, North American national parks, fall foliage, solo travel, African safaris, “Culturious” travel (for culturally curious baby boomers), “Bridges” (for families), and “Events,” which are considered once-in-a-lifetime travel experiences. These may feature a trip to the Kentucky Derby or journeys based around themes of Ken Burns films, with a chance to meet Burns himself. Tauck Travel Style Tauck’s travel style is all about seeing destinations in comfort, yet with a strong sense of adventure and desire to see different sides of the destination - from local life to culturally immersive activities. Land tours are where they began, and they offer hundreds of different tours of various lengths around the world. Typically accommodations are in comfortable 3, 4, and occasionally 5 star hotels. Tauck has an award winning river cruise line, covering a variety of European rivers. They strive to create an intimate setting, where customer service is not compromised. Small ship cruises use 40- to 264-passenger-size yachts and expeditionary vessels that can visit small islands and other locations that big ships cannot. The staff is known for its attentiveness and individualized service. Among Tauck’s unique partnerships is a special connection with the BBC Earth, through which they offer what they call “Earth Journeys”. These explore the natural world with emphasis on being outdoors learning the fascinating earth science behind stunning nature and wildlife. Tauck is a luxury minded brand, and their prices do tend to sit in the upper budget range. Think an average price between $5,000 and $7,000 per person. That said, they strive to reflect a friendliness and openness, and steer away from any kind of “stuffy” feeling. Their trips are comprehensive and full of enriching cultural activities, while also appreciating the value behind enjoying a cocktail hour before heading into dinner. Why Choose a Tour or River Cruise With Tauck? Tauck has an impressive array of travel styles and tours, suitable to numerous types of travelers. They are especially popular with large family groups and corporate groups, as well as very friendly to solo / single travelers. A renowned, award winning, and well established company, they seamlessly marry innovation with legacy - sticking to their roots while continuing to create unique offerings. Some of its biggest growth has come on water, where Tauck operates a fleet of seven European river boats and a number of small ship cruises. Their customer service, attentive and knowledgeable guides are definitely a key component to their popularity. Tauck offers something for just about everyone.

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Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more

Victoria Cruises

4.5 | Great
100% Recommend
Asia
Total Trips 8 Trips
Average Price $ 169 per day
Size Local Specialist
Service Level Luxury
Operator Type River Cruise Line
Tours in River Cruises 7 Tours in River Cruises

Stride Review The only American cruise line to sail the Yangtze River in China, Victoria Cruises was founded in 1993. They have maintained a standard of excellence ever since, winning numerous awards over the years. Their ships are all designed with modern Asian design, and they offer a fully immersive experience with lectures, classes, and demonstrations on board that highlight the Chinese culture. Who Travels With Them?  Victoria Cruises are typically taken by those in the 50+ range, however their multiple activities on board and exciting destinations will be attractive to all ages. With multi-lingual cruise directors, they are able to serve a wide audience. What Makes Them Stand Out? Vessels are between 200 and 400 passengers, and a host of interesting activities and delicious dining options are available on board. These include lectures on Chinese history and culture, Tai Chi lessons, and calligraphy demonstrations, for an immersive, educational experience as you travel down the Yangtze. Where Do They Operate? Travel along the world’s third largest river, the Yangtze, on a five star, ultra luxury ship, as designated by the Chinese National Tourism Administration. How Does it Work? Victoria Cruises boasts 7 mid size cruise ships, which are refurbished every year, and have top of the line amenities on board. All cabins are outdoors with private balconies, a private sitting room in luxury suites, and all equipped with bathtub and shower. Departures are scheduled throughout the year. Why Travel With Them? A cruise is a fantastic way to cover a lot of ground, and see sights in a new way. With Victoria, all rooms are situated to look out over the water, with high quality amenities. They are an excellent way to get a new view of China, and gain a new appreciation of their culture and history. It's also the perfect place to meet others who share similar interests!

Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more

Victory Cruise Lines

4.7 | Excellent
100% Recommend
North America
Total Trips 4 Trips
Average Price $ 654 per day
Size Local Specialist
Service Level Standard
Operator Type Mixed Land & Cruise
Tours in River Cruises 3 Tours in River Cruises
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more

Delfin Amazon Cruises

0% Recommend
South America
Total Trips 5 Trips
Average Price $ 837 per day
Size Regional Expert
Service Level Luxury
Operator Type River Cruise Line
Tours in River Cruises 5 Tours in River Cruises
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more

Blount Small Ship Adventures

4.3 | Great
86% Recommend
North America Central America & Caribbean
Total Trips 5 Trips
Average Price $ 307 per day
Size Global Operator
Service Level Standard
Operator Type Small Ship & Expedition Cruise Line

Stride Review Formerly American Canadian Caribbean Cruise Line, Blount Small Ship Adventures runs small-ship cruises across America as well as the Caribbean and Central America. The family-owned line, based in Rhode Island, operates two ships: the Grande Mariner, and the Grande Caribe, each carrying a maximum of 88 passengers. Their ships date from the late 1990s and aren’t equipped with many bells and whistles, but have been refurbished and offer good deck space, vista lounges, and enjoyable food. Cabins are on the small side, but comfortable. The atmosphere aboard is strictly casual – no need to ever dress up. What Makes Them Stand Out? Blount’s motto — “to go where the big ships cannot” – sums up the basis of its appeal. Its small ships can dock at shallow, out-of-the-way ports as well as put in to centrally located urban docking facilities such as Chicago’s Navy Pier. The line’s founder, ex-oysterman and shipbuilder Luther Blount, was a true innovator in the cruise industry. Blount patented the bow ramp that enabled passengers to walk directly from the ship onto the shore, rather than having to ride small tender boats into port. He also patented the retractable pilot house, which, along with the shallow draft of his ships, made it possible to cruise under low bridges and down narrow waterways like the Erie Canal.   Who Travels With Them? Blount attracts mostly passengers in their 50s and 60s, with some older and some younger. There aren’t a lot of facilities for children, and activities and ports tend to be low-key, geared toward adults with an interest in history, culture, and soft adventure (kayaks, snorkeling gear, bikes, and other sports equipment are available on board many cruises).  Where Do They Operate? Blount’s two ships travel throughout the waterways of North America, primarily in the U.S. but also in Canada, Central America and the Caribbean. The line is one of the few to operate on the Great Lakes, but also travels the Mississippi, Lake Champlain between New York and Vermont, and New York’s Hudson River and Erie Canal. Among its more far-flung destinations are Guatemala’s Rio Dulce, a shallow river bordered by rainforest; Mayaguana, one of the most remote islands in the Bahamas; and Canada’s Georgian Bay.   Why Travel With Them? Blount has decades of experience navigating North American rivers, visiting villages and historic ports, as well as taking passengers to lakes and bays that most other cruise lines cannot or will not travel. 

Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more

Fred Olsen Cruise Lines

4.2 | Great
76% Recommend
North America South America Europe
Total Trips 25 Trips
Average Price $ 178 per day
Service Level Standard
Operator Type Small Ship & Expedition Cruise Line
Tours in River Cruises 18 Tours in River Cruises
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Un-Cruise Adventures

5.0 | Excellent
100% Recommend
North America Central America & Caribbean South America Rivers & Seas
Total Trips 16 Trips
Average Price $ 410 per day
Size Regional Expert
Service Level Standard
Operator Type Small Ship & Expedition Cruise Line

Stride Review Formerly American Safari Cruises, Un-Cruise Adventures changed its name in 2013 to reflect its philosophy: You won’t be on a conventional cruise with us. Un-Cruise has an eight-ship fleet that includes expedition vessels, yachts, and one replica 19th-century coastal steamer. None of the ships holds more than 88 passengers, and one carries a maximum of 22. Most are in the 40-to-70-passenger range. Experts such as National Park Rangers in Alaska often come on board to give lectures and answer questions, and guides often try to arrange cultural encounters with local people. What Makes Them Stand Out? Un-Cruise Adventures combines water-borne adventure with small-ship intimacy and casually clothed luxury. It’s an unusual combination that sets them apart from most other cruise lines. On-board service is personalized and excellent with a high crew-to-passenger ratio, and guides are extremely knowledgeable. Ambience on board is relaxed; you never need to dress up. Once you’ve taken an Un-Cruise, you may find it difficult to return to “regular” cruising.  Who Travels With Them?  Adventurous and active travelers of any age can enjoy an Un-Cruise. Un-Cruise does attract primarily upscale passengers, though if you travel in the offseason and choose one of the lesser-category cabins, their prices are competitive with other small-ship cruise lines. (And more amenities are included in the base rates than on many other lines.)  Un-Cruise also offers family trips. Where Do They Operate? Un-Cruise “adventure cruises” sail Alaska’s Inside Passage, the Galapagos Islands, Hawaii, Mexico’s Sea of Cortes, the Pacific Northwest (Coastal Washington state and British Columbia), and Central America (Costa Rica and the Panama Canal, including a complete crossing from the Atlantic to Pacific). They also run river cruises on the Columbia and Snake rivers of the Northwestern U.S. Un-Cruise Adventures like to get off the beaten path, and, using small ships, they can do just that. How Does It Work? Kayaking, paddle-boarding, snorkeling, hiking, and going out in skiffs to watch for whales or other marine life are typical activities, depending on the destination. There’s also plenty of time to be out on deck, read in the lounge, or chat with fellow passengers at cocktail hour and over meals.  Why Travel With Them? If you don’t like waiting in line to embark or disembark your ship; want to get to know many of your fellow passengers; prefer itineraries flexible enough to, say, go in search of whales if the captain spots some in the distance; believe in the “leave no traces” style of travel; enjoy good food and service; and want to bring home intimate knowledge of a destination rather than just souvenirs, then an Un-Cruise may be right for you. 

Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more

Scenic Cruises

4.0 | Great
75% Recommend
Total Trips 2 Trips
Average Price $ 483 per day
Tours in River Cruises 2 Tours in River Cruises

Stride Review Scenic Cruises, part of the Australian-based Scenic Tours company, is one of the top luxury river cruise operators in Europe.  What Makes Them Stand Out With two new "Space-Ships" (so named for their large spacious staterooms) in 2014, Scenic Cruises expanded to nine vessels, none older than six years. That makes it the newest fleet on European waterways (and even the "oldest" ships were just refurbished). On Scenic Cruises, you get your own full-sized, walk-out balcony, available in most cabins. Luxurious amenities, fine dining, and attentive service are pillars of their customer experience. Who Travels With Them Those seeking a luxurious all inclusive cruise experience and unique on shore excursions. Where Do They Operate Scenic travels all over the globe, and operates both river and ocean cruises, expanding their reach even further.  Why Travel With Them Scenic Cruises are fully inclusive. That means that all meals in multiple dining venues, all drinks (including fine wines and spirits), land excursions, Wi-Fi, butler service, all gratuities onboard and on land -- even airport transfers -- are covered. About the only things you’ll need cash for are souvenirs and postcards.

Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more

Emerald Waterways

4.9 | Excellent
100% Recommend
Europe
Total Trips 6 Trips
Average Price $ 271 per day
Size Local Specialist
Service Level Luxury
Operator Type River Cruise Line
Tours in River Cruises 5 Tours in River Cruises

Stride Review Debuting in 2014, Emerald Waterways, sister company to Scenic Tours is already making a splash with its value-minded deluxe river cruises in Europe and Southeast Asia. What Makes Them Stand Out? With a new deluxe fleet, Emerald Waterways provides customers with stylish and spacious rooms and contemporary comfort. Unique on-board innovations include a glassed in heated swimming pool, which converts into a cinema, and outdoor dining spaces. They are value-conscious and strive to make the river cruise experience accessible to everyone. Cruises are all-inclusive taking the headache out of scheduling add-ons, extras, and transport.  Who Travels With Them? Travelers who enjoy a relaxing, insightful river cruise experience will love going on an Emerald Waterways River Cruise. Their prices are mid range, and typically cruises are enjoyed by an upper age range, though young professionals and families may enjoy them as well. Where Do They Operate? Emerald Waterways runs cruises in Europe and Southeast Asia, specifically the Rhine, Main, Danube, Saône, Rhône and Mekong rivers. Journeys range from 8 to 17 days.  Why Travel With Them? Emerald Waterways promises to provide an affordable, leisurely escape with all inclusive benefits including meals, travel transfers, and onshore experiences. They have multiple deck side viewing and dining areas, friendly staff, and fun onboard entertainment. Their many itineraries aim to provide an immersive experience sailing past stunning architecture, quaint villages and towns, and historical landmarks. 

Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more

American Queen Steamboat Company

4.2 | Great
83% Recommend
North America
Total Trips 2 Trips
Average Price $ 310 per day
Size Local Specialist
Service Level Standard
Operator Type River Cruise Line
Tours in River Cruises 1 Tours in River Cruises

Stride Review While most Americans may identify river cruising with Europe’s Rhine or Danube, river cruising in the U.S. is alive and thriving, and the American Queen Steamboat Company is one of the leaders in the field. Based in Memphis, the line offers river cruises in both the eastern and western U.S. It’s a chance to see the country from a different perspective – much more calming and relaxed than road travel with no worries about lodging, transportation, food, sightseeing or entertainment once you board your ship. What Makes Them Stand Out?  The company’s fleet consists of just two ships – the American Queen and the American Empress – but both boast distinctions in the river cruise industry. The American Queen, which features Victorian-era decor and a two-story Grand Salon for theater performances, is said to be the largest riverboat ever built. While the Empress, which sports a signature red paddlewheel and also provides evening entertainment, is the largest riverboat operating west of the Mississippi.  Who Travels With Them? The river cruise line attracts mostly an older crowd age 50 and above, with some passengers well into their 70os and 80s. Many are American history and literary buffs with an interest in the Civil War, Mark Twain, the Lewis and Clark expeditions, and Americana in general. (A “riverlorian” accompanies each cruise to lecture on regional history and culture.) Where Do They Operate? The American Queen sails the upper and lower Mississippi as well as the Ohio and Tennessee rivers. (The upper Mississippi extends from Missouri north to Minnesota, while the lower Mississippi runs from Memphis south to New Orleans.)  The Empress travels the scenic Columbia and Snake rivers in the Pacific Northwest.  How Does It Work? During the voyage, all shore excursions are guided and included in the initial price. (You can go off on your own if you wish.) The fare also includes complimentary wine or beer at dinner and espresso and soft drinks throughout the cruise. Regional cuisine is featured in the dining rooms, and dress is casual.  Why Travel With Them?  American Queen runs a well-oiled operation that offers good value. While the ships aren’t the most luxurious afloat, they have character and offer a range of activities and cultural enrichment programs, as well as a relaxing river cruise experience.

Premier
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Trafalgar

4.5 | Great
91% Recommend
North America Central America & Caribbean South America Rivers & Seas Australia & Pacific Asia Africa Middle East & North Africa Europe
Total Trips 1,279 Trips
Average Price $ 265 per day
Size Global Operator
Service Level Standard
Operator Type Mixed Land & Cruise

Stride Review Trafalgar is a name many seasoned travelers will recognize. A branch of the Travel Corporation, whose brands all enjoy stellar reputations, Trafalgar has been offering classic and affordable journeys for over 70 years. What Makes Trafalgar Stand Out? Trafalgar is a budget friendly group tour operator with premium tastes. Their motto is “See the world from the inside,” - this is the place to come for culturally rich and immersive travel experiences that don’t break the bank or the back. Tours are comfortable, not too physically demanding, and offer the opportunity to meet, talk, eat and drink with locals. You’ll get to know chefs, artisans, craftsmen, historians, and farmers as you explore what makes each destination truly special. Trafalgar has a strong reputation, having been around since 1947 - putting them right at the pinnacle of when many premier guided tour companies were established. You’ll meet groups of like minded travelers, enjoy cultural experiences, expertly crafted itineraries with local touches and experiences guides, while traveling in comfort and ease. Who Will Enjoy Traveling With Trafalgar? If you are an active traveler, perhaps recently retired, eager to explore the world in comfort, visiting a nice combination of unique local spots and classic sites, then Trafalgar could be a great choice. Possibly you are new to group tours and packages, having been used to creating your own travel experiences at a younger age - Trafalgar provides the perfect introduction to group tours. Or maybe you’re traveling with a family and interested in introducing a new generation of travelers to your favorite country - but don’t really have the time or patience to worry about planning out all the logistics. While they offer many trip styles, suitable for travelers of all ages, their classic touch is popular among older travelers. Classic doesn’t mean old fashioned or tired - simply a bit less on the active adventure and more on the historic sights and cultural experiences. They have a number of family focused tours, as well as tailored trips for special interests. Trafalgar trips are budget friendly, with most trips in middle to low range, including a “Cost Saver” feature that allows you to see more inexpensive trips broken down by ratings and cost clearly. They offer several deals throughout the year. Trafalgar is a British brand, so many of the attendees on your tour will be from the UK.   Top Destinations With Trafalgar, you can find trips to Europe, USA & Canada, South America, Asia, Australia & New Zealand. While the destinations are widespread, Trafalgar trips explore the culture and guides take you to hidden local spots without venturing too far outside the comfort zone. Tours in Europe and the UK are among the most popular itineraries. In South America, Trafalgar travels to Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Ecuador and Peru. In Africa, they go to Egypt, Morocco, and South Africa. In Asia, it’s Cambodia, China, Japan, Thailand, and Vietnam. And in the Pacific, Trafalgar visits Australia and New Zealand. Wherever you go, you can expect high quality guides and accommodations, and smooth travels. They also have a number of religious themed tours, including trips that include excursions to Oberammergau, Bavaria. Once a decade this small town presents a Passion Play, and Trafalgar has had special access since 1970. The next time to experience this unique event is 2020. Trafalgar Travel Style The Trafalgar travel style is all about getting to know the culture through activities and connecting with locals. Their main tagline is “Discover the Good Life” meaning getting to experience the real thing, in a safe, escorted environment with knowledgeable guides there to help with the language and provide historical and cultural context. Discovering the Good Life encompasses perks like skipping lines and private access to classic sites; and unique experiences that bring you to places and among people you’d never have the chance to meet traveling on your own. This kind of travel is local immersion, but not in the same way a 25 year old might interpret that idea. Rather than bunking at hostels, going out late at night, and enjoying potentially questionable street food, you’ll stay in premium, centrally located and culturally significant accommodations - everything from bed and breakfasts in Ireland to hotels right on the banks of Norwegian fjords.  Learn cooking techniques in Italy, enjoy private winery tours at French chateaus, and touring a small olive farm in Spain are just a few examples of the kind of unique travel experiences you can expect with Trafalgar. Groups are large, typically between 40-45 travelers, a max of 52 on trips in the USA and Canada. Primary transportation during the tour is in large coaches, equipped with WiFi (with the exception of Alaska) and featuring large viewing windows - ideal for taking in the scenery as you head to your next destinations.   Most meals during Trafalgar tours are included. Trips often include free time during which you can explore on your own, with suggestions from your expert guides. Why Choose a Tour with Trafalgar? Trafalgar has a solid reputation, and they stick to what they’ve done well for over 50 years. They focus on the classics, providing a culturally rich perspective as you meet locals along the way. Their experience has allowed them to cultivate relationships around the world with local businesses - quality control you can trust for every stop along the trip. Niche tours based on specialized interests are also something they are proud to offer. Trafalgar is where you go to have the essentials and logistics take care of seamlessly while you sit back and enjoy. Do note that these tours can be quite large - 40 people traveling together in a tour group can be stifling for some. While they appeal to an older crowd due to their history and recognizable name, Trafalgar has an impressively well integrated social media presence. Trips on their site are accompanied by instagram posts from real travelers who have been on the same tour, using the hashtag #SimplyTrafalgar. Old or young(ish), couple or single, traveling Simply Trafalgar inspires confidence, comfort, and enjoyment.

Preferred
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more

National Geographic Expeditions

3.3 | Average
67% Recommend
North America Central America & Caribbean South America Rivers & Seas Australia & Pacific Asia Africa Middle East & North Africa Europe Antarctica & the Arctic
Total Trips 59 Trips
Average Price $ 711 per day
Size Global Operator
Service Level Standard
Operator Type Mixed Land & Cruise
Tours in River Cruises 1 Tours in River Cruises

Stride Review In 1999, National Geographic launched their own tour company component: National Geographic Expeditions. Since then they have expanded to offer trips on all 7 continents in over 60 destinations. Recently they partnered with G Adventures to provide even more variety to their devoted customers. What Makes National Geographic Expeditions Stand Out? With National Geographic, you can travel by small, expedition-style ships; classic train journeys; land tours; active adventures; photo tours; family-oriented trips; or private, independent expeditions based on your desires and budget. Wherever you go with National Geographic, which has been in the tour business for 15 years, you can expect doors to open: entry to research sites, archeological digs, private homes or special events. Many expeditions are accompanied by a National Geographic expert or expert team who share their knowledge and passion for a region and help make each experience enriching and unforgettable. Who Will Enjoy Traveling With National Geographic Expeditions? National Geographic is one of those special brands that has managed to successfully straddle the line between “your grandfather loves them” and “your eighteen year old sister loves them”. They cover a wide range of topics, themes, and travel styles, with the educational aspect always prevalent yet not overbearing. If you love feeling like an explorer and an adventurer when you travel, and love learning about the world from experts in a variety of fields, National Geographic is the perfect place for you. This is a company for those who want to dig deeper, like getting the inside story from multiple perspectives - historical, cultural, political, economic, scientific and more. These trips are great for families, and you can choose a private tour or a family friendly group, where hands on activities will widen your children’s worldview in innumerable special ways. National Geographic trips are also extremely popular with photographers - novice photographers will enjoy their photography-centric tours, while many dedicated hobbyists can be found on their other trip styles as well. If you’re the kind of traveler who sacrifices the space for a pair of shoes in your suitcase for another lens or photography accessory...you’ll be right at home on a trip with National Geographic Expeditions. In the same way that National Geographic magazine has always inspired and furthered conversation and discourse, so too do their trips. The spirit of learning about the world is intertwined in every itinerary, so if you consider yourself a lifelong student, you should definitely consider traveling with National Geographic Expeditions. Top Destinations National Geographic Expeditions go all around the world, and cover almost every travel style imaginable. One might think they have a favoring of the more “exotic” locations but an impressive number of United States and Europe tours are offered as well as farther reaching destinations. Regardless of where you travel, you will be sure to get off the beaten path and discover unique cultural landmarks, meet interesting people, and enjoy a sense of adventure. Small-ship expeditions, done in conjunction with Lindblad Expeditions, can take you to Antarctica, the Galapagos and points beyond. Classic train journeys include the Trans-Siberian and trains through India, Spain, and Switzerland. Active adventures might take you hiking in Bhutan or meeting Berbers in Morocco. Land tours could take you to Tanzania, Peru or the Grand Canyon. National Geographic Expeditions Travel Style The travel style with National Geographic Expeditions has an aura of old fashioned exploration with a modern twist. National Geographic Expeditions is a family friendly outfit, offering a wide range of prices and trip styles. Trips vary from mid range budget to higher. Physical level is usually light to moderate. By virtue of their longstanding presence in the world, National Geographic has a wide reaching global network to lean on for incredibly unique and authentic lodging options, knowledgeable guides, and VIP access to historical and archaeological sites. They have several broad travel styles you can choose from: Land Trips - National Geographic Land Trips are immersive explorations, often covering nature and wilderness points of interest such as national parks. They also dive into ancient cities and cultures, with trips exploring everything from monks in Burmese mountainside temples to the lives of nomadic Mongolian peoples. Most trips are around 11 days and physical level is between light and moderate, with some trips featuring moderately challenging hikes in various altitudes. River Cruises - a relatively new addition, Nat Geo now offers around 7 river cruises in Europe covering the Danube, Rhine, and Douro. Currently they also have 1 river cruise in Asia, along the Irrawaddy. These trips are typically between 7 - 11 days and feature wine tasting, history tours, and very light physical activity. Private Expeditions - If you and your family, significant other, or a few close friends are looking for a more intimate travel experience than a group of strangers, Private Expeditions are a great way to travel. These trips are customizable, and can be crafted to perfectly suit your interests and dates. Photography Trips - National Geographic has consistently featured award winning travel photography. They run regular contests for those inspired by the thousands of groundbreaking and historic photographs taken by journalists and travel photographers around the world. On National Geographic photography trips you can actually learn tricks of the trade from real-world photographers and improve your skills. Train Trips - Travel was revolutionized with the implementation of the railroad, allowing people to travel in what was then a rapid pace from destination to destination. Today this ideal has been flipped on its head, and train travel is a leisurely paced excursion allowing time to relax and appreciate the slower meandering through beautiful countrysides. National Geographic train trips cover the classics, such as the Trans-Siberian railway and the Rocky Mountain railroad. Accommodations are comfortable, around a premium level, with options to upgrade. Active Expeditions - For those who enjoy a bit more of an adrenaline pumping and active travel experience, National Geographic also has trips for you. These trips feature multiple active outings, such as kayaking, hiking, and caving. Expect to explore the outdoors covering unique natural phenomena and gaining insight into how and why the landscape has been shaped the way it has. These trips also feature cultural insights, just to a lesser extent. Family Expeditions - National Geographic is the perfect company to travel with when you have curious and adventurous youngsters eager to see the world. They will learn about other cultures, people, food, nature and wildlife from experts with “cool jobs” that might even inspire lifelong interests and perhaps influence a career. These trips are specifically designed to be hands on, allowing everyone to get involved and learn about how things work. Private Jet Trips - For a luxurious and more lengthy travel experience, nothing beats a Private Jet tour. A dedicated team will be with you, and you’ll experience all the best that National Geographic has to offer from local guides to premiere accommodation. These trips are in a very high budget range, but if it’s in your wheelhouse - it’s a superb way to travel and cover a lot of ground. Journeys - Part of a partnership with G Adventures, these trips are adventurous and immersive small group excursions imbued with the spirit of National Geographic. The best of two top travel worlds! Why Choose a Tour  With National Geographic Expeditions? When you travel with National Geographic you are participating in and contributing to a spectacular legacy. Over the years National Geographic has cultivated a reputation for being about cultural exploration, scientific advancement, and broadening perspectives. Their travel experiences are perfect for anyone wishing to get back to the roots of what adventurous, experiential travel really means and enjoy discovering the world from multiple angles. Really one of the best parts about traveling on a tour with National Geographic Expeditions is the sheer breadth of knowledge, personal and professional experience their guides bring to the table. They help provide richly detailed context, historical information, and dive into the details of local life, by showing and doing as well as explaining. You the traveler will have the true experience of getting to know a place from the inside out. If that wasn’t enough of a reason, proceeds from your trip price go towards supporting National Geographic’s ongoing nonprofit work in conservation, exploration, education, and cultural preservation.

Premier
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more

ROW Adventures

5.0 | Excellent
100% Recommend
North America Central America & Caribbean South America Rivers & Seas Africa Europe Antarctica & the Arctic
Total Trips 77 Trips
Average Price $ 482 per day
Size Global Operator
Service Level Standard
Operator Type Group Tour Operator
Tours in River Cruises 2 Tours in River Cruises

Stride Review Established in 1979, by ROW Adventures began as a whitewater rafting company, which now offers many different kinds of active adventure trips. Their award winning trips have been featured in National Geographic Traveler’s “50 Tours of a Lifetime” and Travel and Leisure has named them one of the “World’s Best Tour Operators.” What Makes ROW Adventures Stand Out? ROW Adventures has grown over it's 30 years as a family owned business to include all sorts of adventure travel offerings. They have a high guest to guide ratio, and specialize in small, customized tours, highlighting history and culture with the help of authentic local connections. Most trips involve some camping, but lodge-based options as well - higher end lodging, motels, and ecolodges are available as well, depending on the location and type of trip. Who Will Enjoy Traveling With ROW Adventures? At first blush, ROW Adventures may seem to only be intended for hard core adventure travelers and adrenaline junkies. In reality, they are less niche focused - striving to create active tours that will appeal to a wide range of travelers. It’s not just about Class 4 rapids! If you are active travel minded, relatively physically fit, and enjoy being outside - you will definitely find a tour to enjoy with ROW Adventures. They cater heavily to families, as well as couples, and even retired-aged adults, provided you don’t require mobility assistance, as these trips usually involve walking, hiking, and being active in general. ROW is particularly well suited to travelers who maybe have hesitated to book active travel tours in the past out of fear that cultural travel experiences will not be included. Rather than focus 100% their time on active travel, ROW itineraries also do an impressive job of incorporating visits to historical attractions and cultural activities. Additionally, it’s not all camping and roughing it - ROW has a very wide range of accommodation styles available from glamping to more traditional hotels. Top Destinations Row offers trips on five continents, including North America, South America, Europe, Africa, and Antarctica. Almost all trips take place on or around water, and many involve kayaking, rafting, or other multisport activities. Among some of the most popular activities offered are sea kayaking in Baja, kayaking with Orcas in British Columbia, and they are the world's only tour operator through which guests can beach camp inside of the Galapagos National Park. ROW Adventures Travel Style While some of the main activities you’ll experience on most ROW trips are of course water based given their name, they also offer safaris, biking, and hiking trips. For those who can’t make up their minds, multisport itineraries are also available. Many trips utilize self-powered means of transportation, either sea kayak or raft. Others are cruise or yacht-based, hiking-based, or are supported by gear boats. All trips are accompanied by an extensive support staff. In fact the impressive guide to guest ratio on ROW Adventures trips is a huge plus for travelers. Accommodations on ROW Adventures trips are quite varied depending on the trip theme, time of year, and budget. You can find everything from luxury yachts in Croatia to camping the stars along the Idaho River. Why Choose a Tour with ROW Adventures? Whether you are a thrill seeker or just dipping your toe in the waters of adventure travel, ROW has the trip for you. With their focus on authentic local experiences, highly qualified guides, and intent to make each trip as special and personalized as possible, they are one of the best choices available for your next adventure trip.

Preferred
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more

G Adventures

4.8 | Excellent
100% Recommend
North America Central America & Caribbean South America Rivers & Seas Australia & Pacific Asia Africa Middle East & North Africa Europe Antarctica & the Arctic
Total Trips 807 Trips
Average Price $ 226 per day
Size Global Operator
Service Level Standard
Operator Type Group Tour Operator
Tours in River Cruises 2 Tours in River Cruises

Stride Review Specializing in small-group, multi-day adventure tours and expeditions, Toronto-based G Adventures has been a pioneer in the field since 1990. Founded by entrepreneur Bruce Poon Tip after a backpacking trip to Asia, the company fosters sustainable and environmentally sound tourism practices -- giving back to the communities they visit -- and considers its business “changig people’s lives,” not just offering a vacation. It’s since grown to become the world’s largest independent adventure travel company, with more than 1,350 employees, many of them professionally trained guides. What Makes G Adventures Stand Out? Trips with G Adventures are all encompassing, adventurous, exciting, and fulfilling. Since the beginning, G Adventures has maintained a strong message of engaging with local cultures, being a responsible traveler, and contributing back to communities. Their trips are designed to be life changing. G Adventures strives to create unique experiences for its travelers that start even before the trip itself. The company provides trip inspiration through their Looptail blog and you can connect with fellow travelers via the ‘Departure Lounge’, which is part of G’s ‘Watering Hole’ travel forum. Once on your trip, you will meet your ‘CEO’ or ‘Chief Experience Officer’ who is “responsible for enriching your journey, offering local insight, and pursuing great experiences as they happen.” Most groups average around 12 travelers, with a maximum of 16 on most trips. G Adventures has made a concerted effort to expand their offering beyond youth focused adventures, though this remains a core theme. Your Danube River Cruise will be imbued with the same culturally immersive and adventurous touch as your trekking journey through the Himalayas. Who Will Enjoy Traveling With G Adventures? If you are the kind of traveler who packs running shoes before dress shoes, hiking attire before dinner attire, and a sense of adventure before playing it safe, then G Adventures is the perfect fit for you. You love engaging with locals, meeting new people, and being spontaneous. You also favor experiences over luxury accomodations. Most G Adventures tours have an active focus - expect to be on the move, packing a lot in. That said they do allot generous free time to explore on your own. There’s a chance you may not see every major tourist attraction in the interest of a more “real” experience. But the nice thing is if a particular site is not on the itinerary, you can use your free time to visit. If you are interested in a tour that plans every part of the itinerary down to the minute, G Adventures will probably not be the best fit for you.  While its target market has traditionally been younger travelers in the 18-39 range, G Adventures has expanded significantly, now offering a broad range of trips that appeal to adventurous-minded, culturally curious people of any age. Groups are geographically diverse, with a higher proportion of North Americans than some other operators. G Adventures also does not charge a single supplement, so solo travelers are very welcome on their trips. They offer numerous travel styles, some at a higher budget range, like their National Geographic Journeys. Most G Adventures trips are accessible to low to mid budgets and are ideal for travelers who like experiential small group active travel. Top Destinations   You can find G Adventures trips in most parts of the globe, including 32 countries in Europe, 25 countries in sub-Saharan Africa, 21 countries in Asia, 10 countries in South America, 12 countries in Central America and the Caribbean, five countries in North Africa and the Mideast, plus the U.S., and Canada. A number of destinations are well off the beaten track, from Sao Tome and Principe in West Africa to Borneo in east Asia to the Maldives in the Indian Ocean and both polar regions. Itineraries often focus on more off the beaten path locations; small towns, remote and rural villages, less touristy districts and sites. G Adventures Travel Style Pricing is competitive (cheaper), largely by using “grassroots” approaches: local transport and a mix of privately-owned accommodations, perhaps including homestays and camping. Efforts are made to focus on authenticity with both culinary choices (locally-owned restaurants) as well as transportation methods. G Adventures truly offers something for everyone. Trip styles include Classic, Active, Rail, YOLO (You Only Live Once - for 18-39’s), National Geographic Journeys, Marine, Family, Local Living, and Private Groups. Classic - Classic trips with G Adventures are designed for independent minded travelers who don’t want to miss anything. This is the perfect choice if you want a balanced mix of classic tourist sights and local cultural experiences. Active - Throwing it back to one of the things G Adventures does best. Kayak, walk, hike, trek; experience your destination through the outdoors. These multi-sport trips are great if you hate standing still and enjoy being out in nature. G Adventures Active tours are ideal for those who are relatively physically fit and like a challenge. Rail - A rail journey is a great way to dial it back. Take it slow and really savor the feeling of the journey. Take iconic routes and enjoy the ride. YOLO - “You only live once” is the acronym, and while G Adventures provides adventurous experiences for all, these trips are specifically designed for 18-39 year olds. Get cheeky, get wild, experience life unfettered, as you explore the culture and the local nightlife. If you have the stamina, these trips are once in a lifetime. Kind of like the age range. National Geographic Journeys - A more premium travel experience, these G Adventures trips, as part of a partnership with National Geographic Expeditions, involve the same culturally immersive approach and knowledgeable guides with an elevated level of accommodations and service. Marine - Love to be out on the water? Let G Adventures cruises take you to the far reaches of the globe via river and ocean. Experience incredible sights above and below the surface. Unpack once and enjoy the escape of being a part of the crew and passengers. Family - Adventure tours aren’t always especially friendly to younger travelers. G Adventures Family Friendly tours make adventure activities accessible for you and your youngsters! Trips often have an educational element, and are designed with multiple ages in mind. Local Living - Get to the heart of it with a homestay. These tours are designed to make you really feel at home and appreciate the feel and rhythm of living like a local. Private Groups - If you and your family, or a group of friends want the fun all to yourself, G Adventures can plan a private group trip just for you. Note: part of the culturally immersive experience when traveling with G Adventures is the use of public transportation. This means carrying your own luggage on buses, trains, etc - sometimes during commute hours! So pack light for your own comfort and the comfort of those around you. Why Choose a Tour With G Adventures? For those travelers seeking an exciting, professionally guided, and culturally immersive travel experience G Adventures is the perfect tour company to consider. Their trips are designed to be as authentic as possible - and they place much emphasis on giving back to local communities - so you’ll know your tourism dollars are going toward meaningful causes. Trips with G Adventures are not luxury by any means. But if unique experiences and active days appeal to you over a fluffy pillow then you’re in the right place. Departures are guaranteed once you’ve paid (barring significant weather or safety issues). And they don’t charge single supplements. In short, G Adventures wants you out there with them. You can find something for everyone at G Adventures; whether that’s sailing down the Danube with a glass of wine in hand, or traipsing through the rainforests of Costa Rica. FAQ 1. What kind of luggage should I bring? On many G Adventures trips it’s important to keep in mind that local public transportation is used frequently. Sometimes during commute hours! For your comfort and the comfort of those around you, it’s a good idea to pack light. Some areas will be very crowded, so take pickpocket precautions. 2. Do I need travel insurance? Yes! Travel insurance is required for all travelers on G Adventures trips. If you don’t have your own insurance already, you can purchase a plan for the time you’ll be traveling when you book your G Adventures tour. This is an easy and budget friendly option. If you’re interested in browsing more plans, check out the top travel insurance options » 3. Is airfare included? Unfortunately no. While G Adventures does not include international airfare in their trip prices, they can help you book flights. 4. Is there a single supplement? No. G Adventures does not charge a single supplement for their tours. Single travelers are very welcome. You will share with a same-sex roommate during the tour. If you wish to have a single room, there is usually an option to pay an additional fee for your own room. 5. Is there an age cap? While G Adventures trips tend to appeal largely to younger adventure travelers, all ages are welcome on the majority of trips. The exceptions include on their 18-39 tours, which are specifically designed for only travelers within that range. On most other G Adventures trips, children under 18 must be accompanied by a guardian, and are open to kids 12 and up. Some family friendly trips are open to younger kids. 6. What size are the groups? G Adventures group tours are kept small and intimate. The max is 15, with the average hovering more around 10.

Preferred
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more

Intrepid Travel

4.7 | Excellent
98% Recommend
North America Central America & Caribbean South America Rivers & Seas Australia & Pacific Asia Africa Middle East & North Africa Europe Antarctica & the Arctic
Total Trips 1,134 Trips
Average Price $ 170 per day
Size Global Operator
Service Level Standard
Operator Type Mixed Land & Cruise
Tours in River Cruises 1 Tours in River Cruises

Stride Review Intrepid Travel is all about ‘real life experiences.’ Founded back in 1989 following an “intrepid” African adventure trip, Intrepid lives up to its name by offering up some pretty big adventures -- such as an 11-day hike through Papua New Guinea -- but is broad-based enough to also lead group trips to Hawaii, complete with sipping sunset Mai Tais on Waikiki Beach. Intrepid Travel - Quick Facts Founded in 1989 No Single Supplement (rare exceptions) Small Groups - max 16 on most trips Typical Age Range - 18 - 45 Travel Style - Cultural immersion, adventure, overland Accommodation Style - Camping, Hostels, 3 /4 star hotels Average Tour Price - $2,377 Top Regions - Asia, Africa, Europe, South America Other Brands: Peregrine, Geckos Commonly compared with G Adventures » What Makes Intrepid Travel Stand Out? Above all else, Intrepid strives to get its travelers off the beaten path and under the surface of the local culture. To accomplish this, group sizes average just 10 travelers each, with a maximum of 16 on most trips. This allows for more use of local transportation and lodging, along with fostering cultural immersion. Intrepid also employs local English-speaking leaders who act more as a resource for local exploration than do typical ‘guides,’ shepherding groups from one place to another. Who Will Enjoy Traveling With Intrepid Travel? Intrepid is one of the early pioneers of the “adventure”-style guided trip. Despite its informal beginnings and emphasis on younger, highly adventurous travelers, Intrepid has expanded to a global company with a broad range of trips to fit all ages. Intrepid divides its small-group trips into three separate styles of travel, all priced accordingly. “Basix,” for budget travelers, keep inclusions to a minimum and offer plenty of free time, “Original” journeys which offer more included activities and more hotels, while “Comfort” trips offer the highest level of included activities and standards of accommodation, as well as roomier vehicles. The kind of traveler who gravitates to Intrepid Travel is one who has a real sense of adventure - whether this means hard adventure, or simply going deeper off the beaten path. Interacting with locals is an important factor when you travel, as is gaining a unique cultural perspective. A sense of fun is also essential, whether it means going out at night with your tour mates or daring, ahem, encouraging each other to try strange new foods. Top Destinations Originally focused on small group adventure tours to Asia, Intrepid has expanded rapidly over the years, while maintaining its classic, adventurous, and immersive style. Today Intrepid Travel offers more than 1,000 different experiences in over 100 countries, on all seven continents. Regions with the most trips include Asia, South America, Africa, and Europe. Intrepid Travel Style Intrepid enjoys using local, unique forms of transportation. You might find yourself traveling by felucca in Egypt, on a camel in Morocco, or in a tuk-tuk on the best Thailand tour of your life. Accommodations, which could range from guesthouses to home stays, are also locally owned, allowing a more authentic taste of the region while contributing to the local economy. There are a few broad travel styles to choose from when deciding on an Intrepid tour: 1. Basix - Budget travelers who don’t mind, and in fact prefer, simple accommodations - camping and homestays with basic amenities, and crave a lot of free time for exploring independently will love these tours. Public transportation is used exclusively so pack light! These trips often attract a younger crowd who love the idea of throwing a backpack on, keep plenty of room for the unexpected in their schedule, and allocate their travel funds towards spontaneous bus tickets and street food instead of museum tours and 5 star restaurants. 2. Original - These trips take the backpacker spirit of local immersion, incorporating all the benefits that come with going with a planned itinerary. This style is called “Original” because it’s the type of travel that put Intrepid on the map...pun intended. Accommodations are still simple and budget minded - often homestays are used to give you a true sense of place, personality, and culture. Mostly public transportation is used. 3. Comfort - Intrepid is known for the active adventure style of travel and these trips keep that mentality, with a few more creature comforts thrown into the mix. You can expect higher end, more discerning, accommodations that include a wider variety of included amenities, transportation is mostly private, though you can still expect to use some public transport, as is the Intrepid way. More meals are included in the trip price, and more group activities - which means a bit less free time to explore on your own. Why Choose a Tour With Intrepid Travel? Intrepid is a good choice if you don’t mind foregoing some creature comforts for a truly authentic, local experience. If you enjoy meeting locals when traveling, sampling new and exciting foods, and traveling in mixed-aged groups of 10-16 people, Intrepid could be a good fit for you. It’s important to note, sometimes “ample free time” can be a blessing and a curse. It sounds great on paper, but if you’re looking to maximize your dollar and your vacation time, be sure you understand the implications of having a lot of free time during your itinerary. For some travelers this is an absolute requirement, but for others it can be tough to branch off and explore independently - you also need to make sure you allocate enough travel money for independent meals. The tour leaders are great resources of information for how to spend your free time, but if you like having a full day scheduled from breakfast to dinner, Intrepid may not be the best company for you. Lastly, if sustainable and responsible travel is important to you, Intrepid has poured millions of dollars into local economies, and has a very strong emphasis on responsible travel. So you can feel good knowing that your money helps support some of the innkeepers, vendors, and communities that you’ll meet along the way.

Preferred
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more

AMA Waterways

3.5 | Average
67% Recommend
Asia Africa Europe
Total Trips 26 Trips
Average Price $ 433 per day
Size Global Operator
Service Level Luxury
Operator Type River Cruise Line
Tours in River Cruises 15 Tours in River Cruises

Stride Review Known especially for its top-notch onboard regional cuisine, Ama is the only river cruise line to join La Chaine des Rotisseurs, a prestigious gastronomic society. Passengers tend to be affluent, over age 50, and interested in a mostly casual, all-inclusive experience with minimal hassle; cruise directors make sure everything runs smoothly. Good service is prized. Ama has won awards for its spacious, stylish cabin designs, and passengers can expect lots of complimentary perks: shore excursions, wine and beer at lunch and dinner, Internet access in every cabin (in Europe), and bicycles for use in port are all included in the price. Many cabins in its newer ships have both French and outdoor balconies. Originally called Amadeus Waterways when it was founded in 2002, California-based AmaWaterways later changed its name but hasn’t changed its prime customers: mostly North Americans, British, Australians, and English-speaking Europeans (English is the official language onboard). Ama has undergone rapid expansion and now cruises on three continents. Europe tops the roster, with fifteen ships sailing the Danube, Rhine, Main, Moselle, Douro, Seine, and Rhone rivers. Three ships ply the Mekong and Irrawaddy rivers in Southeast Asia, while Russia (on the Volga-Baltic Waterway between Moscow and St. Petersburg) and Africa (on the Chobe River in Botswana) each sport one ship.   

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