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Top Rivers & Seas Attractions

Amazon River

Danube River

Mediterranean Sea

Mekong River

Nile River

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Top Activities in Rivers & Seas

River Cruise along the Mekong River

Short Cruise along the Antarctic Peninsula  

Sailing on the Adriatic Sea

River rafting on the Colorado River

Snorkeling in the Galapagos Islands


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Classic Rivers & Seas Itineraries

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Classic European River Cruise in 2 Weeks

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Yangtze River Cruise Highlights

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Small Ship Arctic Cruise Highlights 

See all Arctic Small Ship Cruises

815
Reviews of Rivers & Seas Tours
95% Recommend

4.7 out of 5
Excellent 640 Great 130 Average 15 Disappointing 5 Terrible 25
Value
4.7 Guide
4.7 Activities
4.7 Lodging
4.7 Transportation
4.7 Meals
4.7

a

Recommends

Adventure Smith was exceptional. Antarctica 21 corporate office was deplorable. August 2019

3.0

Antarctic Peninsula

Adventure Smith was so helpful throughout-- from initial info to booking the trip to answering questions to helping us once Antarctica 21 cancelled our Mom's trip. But Antarctica 21 corporate office was deplorable. This review is in two parts: a) Antarctica 21 corporate office and b) Antarctica 21 on ship team. The overall headline: Think carefully before you share medical information with Antarctica 21--- as they can and will cancel your trip with no warning, no refund, and no recourse.

My mom, brother, and I booked with Antarctica 21 (A21) in February 2018 with an initial deposit and paid for the remaining balance in Sept 2018 for a late Jan-early Feb 2019 Antarctic cruise. We booked through Adventure Smith Explorations (ASE)—who were amazingly helpful throughout. Mom completed the A21 travel and health information when we each paid the trip deposit in Feb 2018, and she disclosed that she was in her early 80s and on anti-coagulant medication. Mom’s doctor also certified in writing to A21 that she was fit and able to take this trip. Then, 20 days before the start of the cruise in late Jan 2019, A21 sent an email to cancel Mom’s trip and refused to refund her $11,995 cruise price—citing medical concerns. We were stunned. When we asked the A21 representative to clarify which medical concerns led them to cancel Mom’s trip, she cited Mom’s age and use of anti-coag--- but all of this had been disclosed a year prior when the trip deposit was first paid in Feb 2018. Our representatives from ASE tried to appeal with A21, but to no avail. A21 flatly refused our offer for both of Mom’s doctors, whom she had visited within 40 days prior to the cruise, to provide additional fitness certification. A21 stated that no further information would be accepted and that their decision to remove Mom from the cruise was final.

My brother and I left for the trip without Mom, although this was supposed to be a memorable family trip together. On board, as we shared our experience with other passengers, people readily described their own medical conditions and were appalled that our Mom was not allowed on the cruise. Many of the 50-80 year old passengers said they were also on anti-coag and had various medical issues. At least six people told us they had significant health issues-- one had extensive knee surgery 3 weeks prior to the cruise, another had a stint placed in her heart a week before the cruise, two people had fused spines and very limited mobility, two others walked with canes and needed assistance. Three of the A21 team on board the ship told us directly that Mom had been too honest in noting that she took anti-coag. Many other passengers, including the six with major health issues and those on anti-coag, said they had not shared any of their conditions with A21. The last day of the cruise, we spoke with the cruise manager, and at first she would not give us any information about the decision or contact information at their corporate office. Several hours later, she reconsidered and shared one contact information at their Santiago corporate office, but she discouraged us from meeting with their team in Punta Arenas in person.
Also: Be careful with travel insurance. Mom paid over $1,800 for travel insurance for the trip. However, the insurance company denied her claim for reimbursement when A21 canceled her trip. A21 refused to put any reason in writing for us to use with the travel insurance claim. Most thankfully, Adventure Smith Expeditions reimbursed Mom the price of the cruise of $11,995, although Mom still lost the airfare to and from USA to Punta Arenas, Chile. Adventure Smith Expeditions deserves my most stellar recommendations for their help and information throughout our initial booking, during the trip, and once we returned.
Part 2 of the review: Onboard with A21: If you are able to take the trip, the on-board experience with A21 is good quality. My brother and I enjoyed the trip, although it was deeply bittersweet without Mom. The landscape, wildlife, and pristine Antarctic views were truly amazing. Many other reviews describe the actual cruise experience well, so I will be brief on this. A21 used the Ocean Nova ship for our cruise. The ship is well laid out, the ship staff (including captain, dining, and cleaning teams) were very helpful, rooms are tiny and spartan but as advertised, all public areas were very clean, and food quality is reasonable. The A21 tour manager (admin and logistics), expedition manager (excursion leader) and guides on board are enthusiastic, and many of the guides have extensive experience in the Antarctic and are happy to talk with passengers. With ship activities, including two landings on average each day, we stayed busy with information briefings and excursions plus three meals. A21 has other ships, including a new one they will launch in 2020, so look at the options carefully. This cruise option on the Ocean Nova worked well for us, with just 70 passengers for a smaller group although more modest accommodations.
As noted above, definitely buy travel insurance, as our flight from the Chilean military base back to Punta Arenas was delayed two days given bad weather, and we stayed on the boat during this time. A21 has some of the same investors as DAP, the airline for these flights, so our ship had priority with DAP once flights resumed, while other ships (major tour companies, researchers, etc) had to wait further. Travel insurance covered my revised ticket home, hotel in Punta Arenas, and other minor expenses, which were all more than the cost of travel insurance.
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Operator AdventureSmith

K

Recommends

Excellent trip July 2019

4.0

Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island

Recently returned from Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island tour and must say it was an enjoyable trip. Our guide Loren, was great, having grown up in Nova Scotia he knew so much history and had stories to tell. We saw many beautiful sites and stopped at many places we never would have found on our own. Most of the hotels were great. One hotel in Cape Breton was pretty outdated. The included meals were good. We met many great people who became our friends after a few days. This tour group was smaller than the Caravan trip we took to the Canadian Rockies last year, so that was a plus- 28 people vs 40 . There was room on the bus to spread out. Read more

Operator Caravan Tours

A

Recommends

Great experience. July 2019

5.0

Oceanwide Expeditions Company Reviews

Great experience. I loved every single moment of this trip, even when the Drake Shake tested us seriously. It was a privilege to be there. I wish to go back... Ross Sea? Weddel Sea?... Who knows... For the time being I enjoy the memories. Top staff. Thank you!!! Read more

Operator Oceanwide Expeditions

R

Recommends

Overall a wonderful experience! July 2019

5.0

Oceanwide Expeditions Company Reviews

Our 9-night expedition was a series of high points, from polar bears (single males, mothers with cubs) to blue whale, tundra and arctic fox. The expedition team and ship's crew did their utmost to provide an exceptional experience, going out of their way to spot and allow us to approach the wildlife, yet always keeping as a priority the wellbeing of the animals. The ship itself is purpose-built for wildlife expeditions and it shows in all details, from the wide and accessible bridge to the large deck spaces and huge windows in all common areas. Overall a wonderful experience! Thank you very much indeed :-) Read more

Operator Oceanwide Expeditions

A

Recommends

Excellent beyond expectation July 2019

5.0

Oceanwide Expeditions Company Reviews

fabulous stay on the plancius food was excellent beyond expectation kind staff and crew expedition guides were knowledgable, supportive, friendly and accessible comfortable stay on board amazing environment and trip Read more

Operator Oceanwide Expeditions

P

Recommends

We enjoyed very much all the trip July 2019

5.0

Oceanwide Expeditions Company Reviews

We enjoyed very much all the trip. The ship and the staff were great. The cabins were beyond our expectations. The quality of the lectures was amazing. The third officer Mr. Igor Nazarov was always ready to explain all the rather complicated information on the screens and to answer all our questions at the bridge. Maybe, in Ny Alesund the division in groups according to the interests would make the stay on land even more efficient. The walk on an ice pack will be unforgettable. The face to face encounter with a nice and well fed bear was definitely the highlight of the trip. Thank you all for the wonderful time. Read more

Operator Oceanwide Expeditions

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