North American River Cruises
Largely broken into two categories, North American river cruises unveil the rugged beauty of the Pacific Northwest’s Columbia and Snake Rivers or the history and culture of the Mississippi and its tributaries. Follow in the footsteps of Lewis and Clark’s Corps of Discovery on their journey toward the Pacific Coast or float along the Mississippi, evoking Mark Twain’s literary legacy. The entire length of the Mississippi is navigable, sailing from St. Paul, Minnesota to New Orleans with ports in 10 states along the way. Connecting to the Mississippi at the borders of Missouri, Illinois and Kentucky, the Ohio River flows for nearly 1,000 miles from its origin at Pittsburgh and connects Pittsburgh, Cincinnati and Bourbon County to New Orleans and the Gulf of Mexico.
The ships navigating these storied waterways are reminiscent of the time when steamboats and paddlewheelers prevailed and offer itineraries delving into American history. Themed cruises include venturing to sprawling plantations, visiting somber Civil War battlefields and following the path of Huckleberry Finn on the Mississippi River. On the Ohio River, follow the route of some of the earliest pioneers from Pittsburgh or explore the distilleries of Kentucky’s Bourbon County. In the Pacific Northwest, expedition-style voyages offer intimate experiences with the region’s mountains, canyons and more. Depending on the part of the country, North American river cruises sail April to November.