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Cruise Destinations Editorial Europe Opinion

Why you should consider bringing kids on a European Riverboat Cruise

europe river boat cruise

A whirlwind tour of Europe, while fun, is hardly ever easy (especially with kids). For every Instagrammed photo of a family jumping gleefully in the foreground of a gothic church, there is a real-life hunger-and-jet-lagged fueled tantrum to go with it… and often it’s the adults, not the kids, throwing it. A whirlwind European vacation with kids could’ve spelled disaster. However the trip can also be magical! Explore Heidelberg castle and learn about Gutenberg’s printing press in Mainz, Germany; or pretend your kids are the stars of their our own fairytale on the cobblestone streets of Strasbourg, France. The best part? Not once did I hear, “are we there yet?”


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River cruising makes what could be a stressful travel experience a breeze.

So often, we try to pack too much in the vacation of our dreams. I get it—a European trip is a vacation of a lifetime, and you want to squeeze every last drop out of it. However, it’s hard to be fully present when you’re tackling all the logistics yourself. Why not let a seasoned pro plan all the hard stuff, like transportation, tickets and reservations? When you don’t have to focus on the nitty-gritty details (and try to use Google translator to figure out what in the heck every sign says!), it’s easier to soak up the beauty and history.

You can travel Europe by train, plane and teeny, tiny automobile. When you go by river boat, no moment is wasted. Getting from A to B is a feast for the eyes, without fighting traffic or sharing a sleeper car with a snoring stranger. Instead of a car bingo board featuring semi trucks and gas stations, the river cruise version could boast fairytale castles, 11th Century cathedrals, sprawling vineyards and more. BINGO! Now doesn’t that sound more fun?

But wait… there’s more! Since you’re cruising, you only unpack once, sleep in the same bed every night, and have access to incredible tours, excursions and cultural experiences. Unlike giant oceanliners, riverboats provide an intimate travel experience. With spacious accommodations, luxury amenities, dining venues with gourmet cuisine; spa services; and a sun deck with heated pool, and you may not want to travel any other way.

Visit some of the most stunning cities in Europe.

The boat (or maybe it’s the wine) will gently rock you to sleep, and you’ll wake up refreshed in a new city. From Vienna, the City of Waltzes you could explore the majestic Opera House, or burn off some of the ship’s gourmet meals on a guided bike ride along the blue Danube. You can cruise to Passau, known as the “City of Three Rivers,” and stretch our legs as we explore the city or climb to the Veste Oberhaus, Passau’s Castle Hill. Or maybe check out Linz, Austria, where maybe you can opt for a full-day excursion to Salzburg, or explore Linz’s old city center and the Mozart House. European river cruises often hit some of the most quant and unique cities in Europe with a variety of day experiences and excursions to choose from. This just “Along for the ride” riverboat experience is actually perfect for families, because building the itinerary is one less thing to worry about! Need one MORE less thing to worry about? Book with an experienced Cruise Specialist to find the perfect Riverboat experience for you and your family. We have a directory of qualified professionals, click here to find your perfect agent!

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