2017 Travel Trends in Depth — River Cruising

Once thought of as a floating resort for the Boomer population, river tours are hitting the mainstream in 2017. At the very least, maybe it’s time the multigenerational travelers find something that works for all ages in the river tourism trend. Seasoned travelers have grown tired of the traditional ocean cruise, preferring the beautiful rivers that meander through the interior of popular tourism countries.

According to Travel Weekly, the river cruising industry is growing at a hefty rate of 4% every year. And AAA research estimates that 40% of Americans would consider embarking on a river cruise for their next vacation.

Thinking about taking the river ride yourself? Let’s start with a brief intro so you know what to expect. Say goodbye to the days of idly sipping cocktails and wasting day after day lounging on the deck. Perhaps more than other modern travel trends happening this year, river cruises offer the perfect solution for travelers who want to relax while enjoying an immersive travel experience. 

More intrepid tourists will find that biking, hiking, and other outdoors tours give them plenty of fun exploring even after the ship lands. Want a few ideas about which river cruise is right for you? Just choose your adventure!

Around the riverbend:

Tour the Mississippi River if you want to see America in all its glory — this monstrous, 2,350-mile-long river flows all the way from Minnesota to the Gulf of Mexico. Popular routes include the trek between St. Louis and St. Paul and New Orleans to Memphis. The whole river tour takes approximately two weeks.

Or you can travel the Columbia River between Oregon and Washington State, which runs through Portland and arguably the oldest city in the West, Astoria. Not to mention, you’ll see Mount St. Helens along the way. 

We mentioned Myanmar in our last blog about emerging destinations. Myanmar is widely acclaimed for its natural beauty, and tourists marvel at the Himalayan-born Irrawaddy River. As you wander through the newly opened country, you’ll get to explore spectacular temples and Myanmar’s showcase cities, Mandalay and Yangon.

Of course, the right river for you could be waiting in Europe, especially if you love the finer, historic side of life. Take the Saone/Rhone tour if you’re dreaming of exploring French wine country and the French’s most-revered culinary destination – Lyon.

Opt for the very short (just over two hours) Seine tour if you want more Parisian activities and views. Not a Francophile? Take the Elbe or the Danube to catch a glimpse of castles and sample beer.

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