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There are only so many rivers in the world, but since variety is the spice of life, cruise lines continue to introduce new inland waterway itineraries. Highlights include those tailored to solo travelers, ever-popular Christmas markets and convenient voyages that last less than a week. For 2020, a number of fresh routes are available from the following brands.
AmaWaterwaysAmaWaterways is celebrating a massive 2019 with the launch of three new ships — including the double-wide AmaMagna — and it has no plans to slow down in 2020 thanks to a trio of maiden sailings. The weeklong AmaMagna on the Danube itinerary features AmaMagna cruising the Danube Bend, visiting Vienna’s Schonbrunn Palace and taking part in an exclusive wine festival in Spitz, Austria.
Additionally, the seven-night Treasures of the Main & Rhine route boards the AmaDante and AmaSiena between Nuremberg and Amsterdam. There’s also the option for a three-night pre-cruise land program in Prague. The AmaDante and AmaSiena will also sail the seven-night Vineyards of the Rhine & Moselle itinerary from Amsterdam to Luxemburg, giving guests the option to add two pre-cruise nights in Amsterdam and three post-cruise nights in Paris.
Avalon WaterwaysTrue to the brand’s signature customizability, Avalon Waterways’ fresh 2020 Active & Discovery on the Rhone itinerary comes with three dozen options along the way. The route extends from Arles to Lyon with the line’s Classic (city highlights), Discovery (interactive excursions) and Active (energetic exploration) tour choices available at each port. Stops include Avignon, Viviers and Tournon.
CroisiEuropeA trio of new routes are available from CroisiEurope in 2020. One is a short-form, five-night cruise on the Moselle from Cochem, Germany, to Basel, Switzerland, which sails through Koblenz, Rudesheim, Mannheim and Breisach, Germany; and Strasbourg and Rhinau, France. A little longer is a six-night voyage from Mantua to Venice on the Po River that visits three Italian regions: Emilia Romagna, Lombardy and Veneto. And coming in at six nights or a full week is a France sailing from Bordeaux to Royan stopping at Pauillac, Royan, Libourne and Cadillac.
Riviera River CruisesNext year, Riviera River Cruises will offer two new European itineraries: The Seine, Paris & Normandy River Cruise, and The Vienna, Bohemia & the Treasures of the Danube River Cruise. The France itinerary is an eight-day voyage featuring Les Andelys, Honfleur, Giverny and even Omaha Beach. The latter is an eight-day sailing showcasing Austria, Germany and the Czech Republic.
Those cruising alone will be particularly interested in the line’s three new solo traveler itineraries offered without single supplements. Amsterdam, Kinderdijk & the Dutch Bulbfields River Cruise is a five-day sailing, and The Seine, Paris & Normandy River Cruise and Medieval Germany River Cruise are eight-day cruises.
ScenicNew from Scenic next year will be weeklong-plus and longer routes. At eight days in length, the Lower Danube Explorer itinerary sails from Budapest to Bucharest, Romania, featuring the likes of Kalocsa, Hungary, and Novi Sad and Belgrade, Serbia. Also, Spectacular South of France is a 12-day journey perfect for food and wine lovers as it visits Chateau Meursault and an Avignon market. Lastly, Christmas Wonderland is an extensive 15-day Christmas Market itinerary from Amsterdam to Budapest.
U River CruisesWith U River Cruises’ The B no longer sailing from Paris, it is free to embark on a new 2020 route in Eastern Europe. Its eight-day voyage between Amsterdam and Brussels newly visits Rotterdam and Middelburg, the Netherlands, and Ghent and Antwerp, Belgium.
Meanwhile, The A will return to the region on two of its own inaugural itineraries. Vienna Vibe spends eight days traveling from Nuremberg, Germany, to Vienna calling at Regensburg and Passau, Germany, and Linz, Melk and Krems, Austria. And Eastern Europe Escape is a weeklong voyage from Vienna to Belgrade, Serbia, visiting Bratislava, Slovakia; Budapest and Mohacs, Hungary; and Novi Sad, Serbia. Best of all, alternating routes can be combined into 14-night Super Cruises with zero port repetition.