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Your Questions About Rivers and River Cruises

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Susan asks…

What is the best river cruise in the US for 1-2 week trip? Cost not so much a factor as great…?

…scenery and overall exp.
I don’t mean a mega-cruise ship; thinking more about itinerary, quality of meals, etc. We have done several ocean cruises and want to try something smaller and closer to home.

John answers:

Susan, since you don’t say where home is, I’ll give you a few options throughout the country.  Please bear in mind that my answer is by no means comprehensive or exhaustive, only illustrative.

On the East Coast, there are small river boat cruises on the Erie Canal, steeped in history and blending beautiful scenery with  small town charm.  You might also consider the Fall foliage river cruises along the Hudson River in New York, offered by American Cruise Line.

If you are planning on taking the river boat cruise next year, American Cruise Line will be inaugurating new 7 night paddle-wheeler service on the Mississippi River.  These river cruises will be the first in about 4 years, and will sail routes similar to those offered by the defunct Delta Steamship Company.  You can channel your inner Mark Twain.

Finally, on the West Coast, both American Cruise Line and American Safari Cruises, among others, offer cruises on the Columbia and Snake Rivers.  Majestic scenery, Native American culture, and the association with the Lewis and Clark Expedition, all contribute to a very popular and highly regarded river boat experience.

I hope that gives you some ideas.

Michael asks…

I saw a sculpture while I was on a cruise of a river on the east coast of the US?

I believe it was either the Hudson or the Delaware. I was on my 8th grade DC trip. I remember being able to see what looked like a sculpture of a giant man who had fallen in something so you could not see all of him. What did I see? I cant find it anywhere?

John answers:

Check if it was this sculpture, called The Awakening:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Awakening_(sculpture)

It’s an impressive sight.  I can understand why the memory lasted.

Linda asks…

Overnight River Cruises in Thailand??

Hello,

My boyfriend and I will be in Thailand from this Spring.  We’d like to do an overnight cruise to Aruthaya but all the ones we’ve seen are over $200 each! Are there any that are less expensive??

Also any suggestions for Hotels in Bangkok under $30 US would be appreciated.

Thanks!

John answers:

Ayutthaya is only 85 kilometers from Bangkok, so taking an overnight boat there devotes a lot of time to a rather short journey.  You probably won’t find many options lower than the prevailing rate.

There are two other options that you might consider.  There are boats available at the site that will take you around the area.  These can be chartered at several piers, and cost will depend on the length of the trip.

Alternatively, there are packages that combine a bus trip to Ayutthaya with a boat trip back to Bangkok.  Costs can be reasonable.  You’ll get the opportunity to view the sites and the boat trip you’re looking for, without the added cost and exaggerated time consumption.

Finally, there are dinner cruises on the Chao Phraya River in Bangkok, if that interests you.

As for hotels under $30 in Bangkok, sorry.  I don’t know any I could recommend.

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