Ocean cruises take you to countries, but river cruises take you through them. These waterways are ribbons of liquid history that form physical and psychological boundaries and river cruises allow you to slip silently, unobtrusively, through the lives of people in foreign lands. Everywhere human life is intimately intertwined with the river’s flow – you can see people growing things, catching things, making things, moving things. River cruises can take you deeper into a place or culture, and it’s this up-close-and-personal experience that’s behind the popularity of this form of holiday. Unlike ocean cruises, the only hint of being afloat on a river vessel is an occasional nudge as the flat hull breasts the wake of a passing cargo barge.
Saga Cruises offer a variety of river vessels, ranging from intimate ships conveying a maximum of 50 guests to larger ones that carry up to 200 passengers. Regina Rheni II, Rex Rheni II and Filia Rheni II have been chartered exclusively for Saga guests for a number of years, while Saga passengers on Douro Queen, Amadeus Symphony and Johannes Brahms share the voyage with other passengers.
There’s a wonderful selection of cruises on the Dutch and Belgian Waterways; Rhine; Main; Danube; Moselle; Elbe; Oder; Saone; Rhone; and Douro rivers in Europe. Saga also has cruises on the Mississippi, Columbia and Snake rivers in America and along the Volga from Moscow to St Petersburg. From July 2017 there are cruises aboard RV Mekong Pandaw in Cambodia and Vietnam sailing from Siem Reap to Ho Chi Minh City. A Saga representative accompanies each cruise. Many cruises are scheduled to coincide with fascinating spectacles such as the Rhine in Flames Festival. There are also cruises to the Danube Delta for wildlife spotting; Monet’s garden in Giverny; Normandy to see the D-Day Landing beaches; as well as a Jazz and Wine cruise on the Rhine and Moselle.
You’re sure to get the most out of every destination by exploring independently, joining an excursion or signing up to visits led by a local guide. Highlights include the Keukenhof Gardens on the Dutch and Belgium Waterways’ cruises; Siegfried’s Museum of Mechanical Music on sailings along the Rhine; and the impressive Sandstone Mountains viewed from Elbe and Oder cruises.
Each vessel offers itineraries, entertainment and cuisine crafted with British passengers in mind, as well as excellent facilities and exceptional standards of service for which the company is renowned. Highly-rated cuisine is prepared by the team of onboard chefs and is inspired by the regions visited – from tempting buffet-style breakfasts to leisurely four-course dinners.
With so much included, Saga take away any nagging doubts about what’s left to budget for. This includes a free bar; wines, beer and soft drinks with lunch and dinner; and of course, all meals and entertainment. There’s also an array of included options such as return rail or coach travel within the UK mainland to London or UK departure point. Other perks include return economy-class flights plus any domestic flights; free car parking close to the Eurostar terminal at Folkestone or departure airports; as well as return transfers between overseas airport, train station, hotel and port. For more details about Saga River Cruises call our cruise specialists now on 0141 242 1337 or click on www.barrheadtravel.co.uk.