European river cruises offer a unique way to see the world. The scenery is breathtaking, and you can enjoy some of the best food in the world onboard your ship.
Better yet, you explore cities that most people never get to visit. These include Amsterdam or Prague on selected best river cruises in Europe.
The best European river cruise is the Delightful Holland and Floriade Cruise. On the other hand, the best European river cruise line is the Viking River Cruise.
The most scenic river cruises are in Holland and Belgium. Even so, the best month for a European river cruise is March through December.
What Are The Best River Cruises In Europe?
The top 10 European river cruises might not be easy to pick. This is because every cruise offers the best for the guests.
But we’ve lifted the burden of your shoulders and listed down ten cruises worth your money.
1. Delightful Holland And The Floriade River Cruise
Are you ready for the most breathtaking cruising experience? The seven-day cruise lets you experience most of the Netherlands’ floral events.
You’ll visit Amsterdam, Rotterdam, the Hague, Leiden, Delft, Haarlem and Arnhem. This is an outstanding way to see all these beautiful cities in one week.
The focus of this trip is Floriade, where you learn about the growing green cities. Also, you see cities’ role as an essential part of the environment.
You’ll also have time for some shopping at the many flower markets. They hold the markets throughout the country during the summer months.
The cruise uses the Ms. Arena cruise ship, refurbished with new cabins, restaurants, and bars. It’s very comfortable, so there is plenty of room onboard.
There is even a swimming pool onboard where you relax while sunbathing.
The cruise provides:
- A 7-night cruise from London
- All accommodation, including breakfast
- Full English breakfasts daily
- Free Wi-Fi internet access
- An experienced tour guide who speaks excellent Dutch
- Transport between ports by coach or minibus
Finally, you can book early with a deposit of £100 per person payable when booking your holiday.
2. The Gardens Of Holland And Belgium With Floriade
The most beautiful gardens of Holland are accessible through a river cruise.
The Dutch have been growing flowers for centuries. As such, it is part of the tourist attractions while cruising.
The first flower show was held in 1875 to celebrate Queen Victoria’s Golden Jubilee.
Today there is an annual event called “Floriade” every year from May 1st until September 30th.
The event is huge and attracts over one million visitors each year.
The gardens of Holland and Belgium cruise is an excellent river cruise experience. On this cruise, you enjoy all the wonderful sights along the Rhine River.
Here, you’ll see many famous landmarks such as Cologne Cathedral and the Lorelei rock. All these remind you of great European history.
The itinerary is six nights / 7 days and includes:
- 2-night stay in Amsterdam
- 3-day visit to Rotterdam & Delft
- 4-night stay at Brussels
- 5-day visit to Antwerp & Bruges
- 2-night stay in Paris
- Return flight home
We liked this cruise because it includes the most important things in the cruise fare. Still, you can choose to visit different cities through the itinerary.
3. The Mighty Rhine To Switzerland
The Mighty Rhine to Switzerland is another popular cruise.
It takes you through the beautiful scenery of Germany and Austria. The ship sails from Cologne, Germany, to Basel and Speyer, among other cities.
You get to see Rhineland’s spectacular sites from Rüdesheim to Bingen. Besides, you visit some of the most important castles along the way, such as the Neuschwanstein Castle.
The 7-night cruise begins from Cologne and ends in the UK port city of Southampton.
MS Arena offers modern facilities like an indoor pool, sauna, and gymnasium. Besides, you get a lot of activities to take part in.
On this river cruise, you can choose between an all-suite stateroom with or without a balcony. The prices are different.
There are many dining options available, including specialty restaurants. They serve those who want to enjoy fine cuisine while cruising down the mighty Rhine River.
Finally, this is one of the best European river cruises because it offers excellent value for money. It’s not only affordable but also provides excellent service at every level.
4. Classic Danube Explorer
The Classic Danube Explorer cruise is on another level. Guests are treated to good food, beautiful weather, and splendid views from stateroom windows.
The river cruise lets you see more than just Budapest. You go through Austria, Slovakia, and Czech, among other great destinations.
Better still, you have the Danube history and culture at your fingertips. You can visit castles, museums, churches, monasteries, and much more along the way.
This is an all-inclusive trip with no additional costs for drinks or gratuities. So, it’s perfect if you want to experience Europe without breaking the bank.
On the cruise, you have a 7-night itinerary. This offers lots of free time in between each port so that you get to explore wherever you like.
There are numerous opportunities like visiting local markets, shopping, exploring cities, and sightseeing.
5. Rhine Christmas Markets
Are you ready for the wonder in the most hidden parts of Europe?
The Rhine Christmas Markets cruise is all that you need. The cruise is perfect for holidays, family reunions, and romantic getaways.
The beauty of this region will amaze you. It has beautiful castles, medieval towns, picturesque villages, and cozy restaurants.
Enjoy a relaxing holiday onboard the luxury riverboat cruising along the banks of the majestic River Rhine.
Onboard the-ROSA ship, you relax and enjoy your time. The cruise sails through the beautiful landscapes of Germany’s Romantic Rhineland.
There is an extensive selection of activities to keep everyone entertained during the day. These activities include excursions and cooking classes.
Additionally, the ship has experienced crew members. The crew is always happy to help and make sure everything runs smoothly as you enjoy the scenery.
Booking early guarantees you better deals!
6. Rhine and Moselle River Cruises
Another Rhine experience that offers luxury and affordability is the Rhine and Moselle River Cruises. The cruise is among the most unforgettable cruises in the heart of Europe.
It offers expansive activities from sightseeing to shopping or just relaxing on board.
The river cruise has been around for many years, and it remains one of the best ways to see Germany’s beautiful landscapes.
The Rhine and Moselles are two rivers that flow through Germany, and they meet at Mainz.
They have their unique characteristics. For instance, the Rhine flows north-south while the Moselle runs east-west.
7. Douro River Cruises
The Douro River Cruises are a series of cruises on the Douro river in Portugal. They offer cruising options through wine country, with stops at wineries and vineyards along the way.
You cruise Europe through the oldest wine states of Spain and Portugal. You will visit some of the winemaking regions like Rioja, Bairrad, and Priorat.
During your trip, you can taste wines from these areas and learn about their history.
You can book the cruise and enjoy the best of European towns and adventure. Additionally, many booking sites offer discounts that fit your budget.
8. Rhine, Strasbourg & Heidelberg
The Rhine, Strasbourg & Heidelberg is a luxurious cruise on the mighty river. The ship cruises from Basel to Amsterdam.
It moves through Germany’s most beautiful cities like Cologne, Frankfurt, and Mannheim.
You get to see spectacular scenes of nature along with some fantastic architecture. You can also visit castles such as Schloss Neuenburg or Rheinfels Castle near Koblenz.
Equally, you experience the charming French city cuisines at restaurants like Le Bistro de Paris.
What’s more? You enjoy all these things while cruising down the majestic River Rhine!
9. The Blue Danube – MS Thomas Hardy
Another exceptional cruise is the Blue Danube cruise.
You tour different places along the Danube River and then take a boat ride on it to see more of the city from another perspective.
Some cities and historical sites that are visited include Vienna, Bratislava, Budapest, and Prague.
The ship also visits other European countries such as Germany, Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Romania, and Bulgaria.
A typical ship for this cruise is MS Thomas Hardy. It is a luxurious ship with everything included in your package price. You can choose between 2 or 3 nights’ stay at each port.
10. Enchanting Rhine & Yuletide Cruise
If you want to cruise in Europe, try the Enchanting Rhine and Yuletide Cruise. This is a great way to see some of Germany’s most beautiful towns and cities during this particular time of year.
You’ll enjoy an enchanting river cruise along the romantic River Main. Besides, you go through charming medieval villages with quaint shops lined by ancient buildings.
It is luxurious accommodation aboard. The elegant ship that will take you on your journey from Frankfurt, Main to Koblenz. The cruise begins at 7:00 pm and ends around 10:30 am the next day.
What Is The Best European River Cruise Line?
The best European river cruise line is the Viking River cruise. The ships are modern, comfortable and have a great variety of activities to keep you busy on board.
They also guarantee exceptional value for money with their special offers. The line has many ships available, so book one that suits your needs.
Most ships offer an excellent range of dining options. These include buffet-style restaurants and formal sit-down restaurants.
There’s usually plenty going on in each port, which means it never feels like work! Besides, you can pick from a broad selection of excursions during your time at sea.
These include visits to local sights such as castles or museums; cruises along scenic rivers. Still, you explore city tours and shopping expeditions.
Which European River Cruise Is The Most Scenic?
River Cruises in Holland and Belgium offer the most scenic cruises on Europe’s rivers.
It has over 2,000 km of navigable waterways. The waterways are good for leisure, boating, and commercial shipping.
Besides its many lakes, the Netherlands has some of the world’s largest inland rivers. There are also many smaller water bodies such as polders, dunes, and marshes.
While cruising, guests have a fantastic view of the landscape. In addition, they enjoy the fresh air from the open windows.
Onboard you have comfortable cabins, spacious lounges, and dining rooms with friendly staff. You may choose between traditional Dutch cuisine or international dishes.
A wide range of drinks is available at all times including soft drinks, and water.
What Is The Best Month For A European River Cruise?
The best month for a European river cruise is March to December. The weather in Europe is generally mild and dry, with average temperatures of around 10 degrees Celsius.
This means that you can enjoy your time onboard without having to worry about getting too hot or cold.
Here’s why. You’ll see some beautiful scenery and visit many interesting places along the way.
If you plan to travel during the winter months, it may not always be possible to go out. This is because of the ice forming on the water surface and decks.
Are European River Cruises Operating In 2021?
The European river cruises are operating in 2021 after the coronavirus pandemic. Even so, the cruise industry is still recovering from this crisis.
Currently, cruises have strict covid measures with some requiring insurance to board. Others need evidence of vaccination.
Thus, it might take some time before a full assessment shows the impact. Sadly, many people were disappointed because of the canceled trips.
Are European River Cruises Worth It?
The European river cruises are worth it because of the variety and quality of food. Also, the cruises offer entertainment, activities, and excursions.
You visit many countries on a cruise ship that is not possible to do by land or air. The only downside I can think of is that you have to pay for everything except drinks. If your budget allows, then go ahead.
Finally, the best river cruises in Europe combine a great deal of comfort with an excellent level of service.
The cruise line must provide you everything your heart desires while on board.
Ensure the ship has enough space onboard to accommodate everyone comfortably. Consider the options we’ve recommended above carefully before making any final decisions.
You’ll find that there’s no shortage of choices for choosing a European riverside city or town. Each makes the perfect base from which to explore this beautiful continent.