Across the globe unabashed luxury has discovered a new, riverine niche. The recent renaissance in river cruising has tapped into the psyche of a new generation of travellers who don’t want to compromise on style. They seek an opulent self-contained haven of conviviality and exploration.
On board these gleaming vessels menus reflect an epicurean élan, service is attentive and personable, while supremely comfortable accommodation with a guaranteed view of the river are all part life’s rich tapestry when cruising along waterways that offer a relaxed rendezvous with majestic cities, noble towns and bucolic villages.
Ocean cruises take you to countries, but river cruises take you through them; land is always in sight and the scenery is at eye level. Days are filled with specially created land tours led by expert guides to cultural masterpieces, plus there’s a variety of biking excursions taking a path less travelled for glimpses of local life.
After a day filled with show-stopping scenery, there’s the chance to meet new friends in the comfy lounge before retiring for a blissful night’s sleep caressed by the gentle sound of the lapping river.
For the ultimate in effortless Europe there’s a miscellany of contrasting cruises. It’s possible to voyage from the North Sea coast to the Danube Delta; witness the romanticism of the castles of the Rhine; or savour close encounters with quixotic French rivers such as the Seine; Rhone; Dordogne. Beyond the blue horizon the mystical Mekong; Ayeyarwady; Nile; Ganges; Yangtze; and Mississippi beckon to be explored as never before.