For most people the idea of a cruise summons up visions of the high seas and broad horizons, but river cruises are rapidly becoming as popular as those on a large liner traversing the ocean waves and a river trip offers a totally unique experience.
There are many varied ideas for river cruising destinations; some will take you on a voyage of exploration around Europe, while others will transport you to South East Asia and China. Russia and Hungary will be on the itinerary and even a trip up the majestic Seine in France, where you’ll coast along the river voyaging from Paris to the ancient city of Rouen.
Anyone who is interested in either art or horticulture, or both will be delighted to discover that the trip encompasses a stop at Giverny, the home and gardens of the famous impressionist painter Claude Monet.
South East Asia
One of the easiest ways to research this type of holiday is to visit vikingriverivercruises.co.uk. If you’ve always wanted to travel to the Exotic East, then why not take a trip along the Mekong River? This historic artery of South East Asia runs through both Cambodia and Vietnam. You’ll be able to start your journey in Hanoi and make your way to Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon), travel into Cambodia to marvel at the ancient temple site of Angkor Wat and then on to Phnom Penh where you’ll be able to rejoin the Mekong and make your way back to Vietnam.
River cruising takes you right to the heart of a country and you’ll be encouraged to stop off during your cruise and visit a local school as well as some traditional villages. This is most certainly one of the more interesting ways to absorb the surrounding environment and you’ll soon find that the journey is one of contrasts.
It’s difficult to believe that until the early 1990s, the idea of taking a leisurely cruise in Russia was utterly inconceivable, thankfully the situation has changed and river cruises include a trip along the waterways of Moscow where you’ll finally connect with the River Volga, which will be your watery highway as you cruise northwards towards the River Neva and then drift on towards St Petersburg.
During the course of your journey you’ll be able to visit an ancient monastery complex as well as the village of Mandrogy that has been preserved as a museum. As a result of this particular trip you’ll understand why Russians refer to their country as ‘Mother Russia.’