Top 8 Amazing River Cruise Destinations for 2013

by Jules on February 25, 2013

Exploring a destination whilst onboard a river cruise is a rather old-fashioned but rewarding experience. The pace of life is slower and you’ll experience so much local life along the way that you’ll always want to travel by boat!

Mekong River in Vietnam and Cambodia
Flowing through Vietnam and Cambodia, the Mekong River, is an alluring destination for travelers. Cruising between Siem Reap, Cambodia and Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, will allow travelers to take in the sights and sounds of the river and get a chance to tour both of the cities. Visit Angkor Wat and other Hindu temples and Buddhist monasteries, as well as the fishing villages, floating markets and rice paddies of the region.

Irrawaddy River in Myanmar
The Irrawaddy is the largest river in Myanmar, running from north to south of the country formerly known as Burma. Travelers coming here would come to lose themselves in a whole other world. The land is still mostly rural and barely touched by technology. Buddhists temples are found in abundance here with Bagan being especially famous for them. Catch a glimpse of floating villages and aquatic gardens in Inle Lake or head over to Yangon, the social and economic center of Myanmar.

Nile River in Egypt
The Nile River, famous for sustaining ancient civilizations, is a must for travelers who are fascinated by history. Go on a tour of the various temples and tombs of Luxor, including the Valley of the Kings, where the tomb of King Tutankhamen was discovered. Taking a break in Cairo will allow tourists the chance to see the Great Sphinx of Giza, and to also witness the Great Pyramid at Giza, the only remaining wonder of the ancient world.

The Douro River Valley in Portugal
Arising from central Spain, the Douro River makes its way into the Atlantic Ocean through Porto, Portugal. It only began welcoming cruise ships to sail on its waters very recently, meaning it is one of the less-frequented rivers of Europe. Travelers who want to explore something new may want to consider the Douro River. Historic places, food and culture are its main attractions. Also check out Salamanca, Spain, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and Lisbon, Portugal’s capital and largest city.

The Persian Gulf in UAE
Enjoy a sunny trip around Dubai, Oman, Fujairah and other parts of the United Arab Emirates while cruising through the Persian Gulf. Entering the region may sound daunting to some travelers, but an increasing number of cruise lines are doing just that. Stay at the beach resorts and experience the perfect beach weather of the Gulf. Visit Abu Dhabi, the cultural center of the UAE, to take part in all the excitement.

French Polynesia
The tropical islands of the French Polynesia make this the ultimate cruise destination for those who love clear waters and lush foliage. French Polynesia is made up of five archipelagos that include the Society, Austral, Gambier, Marquesas and the Tuamotu Archipelagos. Bora Bora is a favourite among celebrities with Tahiti, providing an urban background. Both of the islands are part of the Society Islands. The vanilla plantations are also worth a visit.

Fjords of Norway
Go on an expedition through the spectacular fjords in Norway to take in the wondrous beauty of Mother Nature, all in one place. From majestic mountains to gorgeous waterfalls and beautiful glaciers, it is all here to see. Stop by Bryggen, another UNESCO World Heritage Site, to view the wooden buildings still standing since medieval times. Animal lovers may want to include Svalbard within their itinerary to watch polar bears and other arctic animals roam free.

Amazon River in Peru
The Amazon River basin in Peru promises to be an exotic cruise that is sure to delight nature lovers. Experience the flora and fauna of the rainforests of Peru; plus, the unique pink dolphins of the Amazon River are a must-see for many tourists. Cruising through the Pacaya-Samiria Reserve allows travelers to catch sight of a number of other rare animals as well. Plus, meet the riberenos, the people living along the riverbanks.

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