If you think cruises are too expensive, too long, or too (insert adjective here), you just haven’t found the right one. A cruise through Europe can be the trip of a lifetime with a price tag you can afford if you know how to find it.
Whether you’re looking for adventure, history, or a trip for the whole family, you can cruise to destinations familiar and exotic. When searching for the perfect vacation, make sure you’re following these tips and tricks to find the perfect itinerary to meet your needs.
Start planning early in advance so you have plenty of options for cruises to fit your itinerary needs. You can find cruises in Europe as short as one day and long as several months.
A popular option for those who hate flying, consider a transatlantic cruise, departing from Florida or New York and arriving in Southampton or other European ports. These journeys range from seven days and offer plenty of onboard activities and comfortable amenities during your trip.
Make sure you know who will be on your cruise so you can have the perfect vacation. Some cruise lines, like Oceania tailor to a mature audience. Research ahead to find the activities and programs for specific sailings so you know exactly what you can expect to experience onboard.
If you’re more interested in sightseeing, consider a slower river cruise where you can make long stops in all your favorite port cities along the Rhine, the Seine or the Danube. Luxury river cruises attract a more affluent traveler, but some are surprisingly affordable and all-inclusive.
Several cruises have a plethora of activities for families and offer complimentary childcare throughout the day and evening.
- Includes guided tours and sightseeing
- Castles, cathedrals, lush landscapes
- Cruise thru 4 countries along the Danube
10-day Prague to Budapest Danube River Cruise
- Special: $299 airfare on select cruises
- Choose excursions from a variety of experiences
- Enjoy wines, dishes & chocolates of the region
8-Day Active Discovery on the Rhine River Cruise
- 2019 and 2020 cruises available
- Explore Paris, Seine River & Normandy
- Sample wines & cheeses of France
8-day Paris to Normandy 2019 River Cruise
- $1,000 off per couple with $299 airfare
- Cruise France, Germany, Belgium & more
- Book by Feb. 19, travel through Dec. 2019
Save on 2019 Europe River Cruises
- Sails July 28 from Amsterdam
- See the Netherlands from luxury 5-star ship
- Incl. port charges, all taxes & daily port talks
9-Day River Cruise | Summer Dutch Delights
- Sail from Amsterdam in Oct. 2019
- Choose a 7, 9 or 15-day voyage thru Europe
- All-inclusive dining + free city walking tour app
European Autumn Adventure | 15-Day River Cruise
- Add R/T air from most U.S. cities for $499
- Travel round trip from Amsterdam
- Option to cruise 1st or 2nd leg only
10-Day Netherlands River Cruise
- Be among the first to cruise on this new line
- Three custom built yachts, each with 149 suites
- Caribbean Med, Europe & other destinations
Book your 2020 Voyage w/ Ritz-Carlton Yacht Collection
You can find great value and deals with cruises through Europe, but research what the ship offers and consider suites if you’re interested in luxury cruises. Regent offers all-inclusive luxury cruises, so you don’t have to worry about anything except enjoying yourself. You can find multi-room suites to accommodate more people and enjoy great views of the ocean.
For a lower cost option, check out great deals on Norwegian, with popular destinations throughout the Mediterranean. With great deals from indoor staterooms to luxurious suites, you can find something within every budget for the solo traveler or extended family.
When most people hear European cruise they think Mediterranean, and while there are plenty of those cruises, you can also find destinations throughout the Baltic and English Channel. More adventurous travelers mean more exotic locations, so places you might not know of could be on an itinerary.
Research little known stops like Gibraltar and Dubrovnik for some excellent sightseeing and picturesque towns. You can take a traditional Mediterranean cruise with stops in popular ports like Barcelona, Marseille, and Naples, or opt for something out of the ordinary and sail through the Baltic to destinations like Gdansk, Tallinn, and St. Petersburg.
Many cruises offer packages that will turn your cruise into a vacation package. Let the cruiseline handle airfare for you, so you only need to show up.
For the more adventurous travelers, cruiselines offer before or after cruise tours extending your trip for several days and providing in depth tours of famous locations by knowledgeable English-speaking guides. You can choose different lengths and itineraries based on what you want to see and do during your tour.
Remember to book your cruise as early as possible for the best available deals and take advantage of special offers like free drinks, shore excursions, fine dining, and reduced deposits.
By: Devyn Woolsey
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