Cruises: a new way to discover Europe

Posted by on March 13, 2013

Many people may have hesitated about choosing a cruise as a holiday option. This might be because this type of holiday is based on ship rather than shore activities.


The development of river cruises has introduced a totally different type of holiday into the travelling vocabulary and anyone looking for a trip with a difference will be delighted to find they can actually cruise the rivers of Europe and not just the oceans of the world.

The heart of the Continent

Boat trips through Europe can vary enormously and it’s not just a question of destination but the one thing that all river cruises have in common is that they are able to navigate right into the heart of this fascinating continent. Travellers often forget that Europe is astonishingly beautiful, just look at the splendours of Budapest or admire the dramatic fairytale scenery as you cruise down the Rhine.

Viking Freya cruise ship

Viking Freya cruise ship

In recent years many holidaymakers have left this continent and fled for pastures new, South America and South East Asia are just a few of the regions that, in the last few decades, have seen an explosion in the tourist industry. A river cruise, though, can often introduce you to regions that you may not have considered as a holiday option in the past.

For example, cruising down the Dnieper to the ancient city of Kiev didn’t used to feature in most holiday brochures. Now, though film enthusiasts can replay the action from ‘The Battleship Potemkin’ by actually visiting the Potemkin Steps in Odessa.

Many things for many people

Obviously it’s up to the individual to choose which cities they wish to visit, but imagine the joy of starting off in Berlin and then travelling down the Elbe to drop off at Dresden en route to yet more novelty on the way. River cruises do allow the traveller plenty of time for individual exploration, you won’t be herded by those enthusiastic brolly wielding tour guides telling you how much time you’ve got to marvel at the splendours of Notre Dame in Paris or ‘The Dom’ in Cologne.

You can really decide for yourself how much input you want from your Programme Director and then design your time accordingly. The idea of just sitting on a boat and cruising down the Rhone is idyllic, good food in Lyons one day and Roman architecture in Arles on another, and an extra bonus is that chasing for trains and their connections becomes a thing of the past. Bon Voyage!

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