The River Cruise Experience tm America's Best River Cruises For Retirees

Best USA River Cruises For Retirees In America

As many American retirees are choosing to vacation close to home and bid adieu to overseas travel, USA River Cruises are soaring in popularity. With no shortage of choices, how do they decide?

At this point-in-time, traveling to and in Europe is quite a challenge. New rules and regulations governing air travel, multi-country entry and social distancing rules that vary from country to country can seem overwhelming to retirees. Being able to cruise close to home, river cruising North America is a wonderfully relaxing way to sail the Mighty Mississippi, Great Lakes, The Hudson Valley, New England, The Florida Coast, The Northwest, even Alaska.

Many retirees have enjoyed ocean cruising, but do they really want to be that close to 3000 of their new found friends? River cruising is much different and in some cases may be better suited to the new norm for cruising. Ships on average have fewer than 200 guests. There's never a long wait for dining and, with an open-seating policy, social distancing can be done with little concern.

River cruises visit a number of local landmarks and sights in major US cities and towns along the way. You'll never take a tender ashore. River boats dock close-by, great for retirees so they don't have to struggle with lots of walking from the ship to town. You dock close to landmarks, marketplaces, museums and restaurants,

As an example, the "Mighty Mississippi" offers a different type of cross-country journey for the curious explorer. A Mississippi River cruise offers the rare opportunity to sail through America's heartland. Explore picturesque towns and boom cities; take in views of pastoral farms and towering bluffs; and immerse yourself in region's rich history and culture. If you have the time ( 15 days ) you can sail the length of the Mississippi. History and culture unfold as you cross the country from north to south on this enriching voyage. Enjoy relaxing scenic sailing and unparalleled bird-watching as the landscape changes from the bluffs of the North to the bayous of the South. Learn about the American civil rights movement and the Civil War. Along the way, tap your feet to the rhythm of American folk, soul and jazz music—and taste a delicious array of regional cuisine.

River cruises are all-inclusive. In addition to fine dining, some include drinks, gratuities, Wi-Fi and shore excursions, with no nickel-and-diming by eliminating unexpected additional fees. Forget about turbulence and heavy waves rocking the ship, river cruises offer a much more relaxing and smoother experience. Say goodbye to rough waters and prepare to watch the world pass by from your balcony for much calmer sailing on a river cruise.

The river cruise onboard and ashore experience, tends to be relaxed, casual, and comfortable. Staterooms and suites are well-appointed and typically spacious, often larger than ocean going vessels, Most offer balconies with panoramic views.

On a river cruise you can enjoy up-close and awe-inspiring scenery as you travel up or down river. And, if your budget allows, you can enjoy breathtaking views, like a glacier calving, from the comfort of your balcony. Plus, while onboard, you can take in one or more enrichment programs, seminars, culinary or art classes and enjoy local entertainment. For instance, on Viking Cruises , their Viking Mississippi River Ship ( debuts in 2022 ) guests can enjoy regionally inspired dishes and cooking demonstrations, as well as art - or history-focused lectures to deliver context for the destinations on their itinerary. 

If you enjoy learning about, and experiencing local culture, a river cruise is an obvious choice. If you are seeking an adventure, filled with the uniqueness of various cultures within America, with its vast history, art, food, entertainment and interesting people, then USA river cruising in the way to go. You'll take in the sights and sounds of each destination, turning moments into memories that will last a lifetime.


Raye & Marty Trencher

River Cruise Report®

Certified Travel Planners


Ready to explore USA River Cruises?
Here are two river cruise operators with a large following, good reputations and lots of choices to fit any lifestyle and budget.


Visit American Cruise Lines ( 2021, 2022, 2023 )

New England Cruises

Visit the Islands and Harbors of
New England and Maine



Visit Viking River Cruises ( USA cruises start in 2022 )


Mississippi River Cruises 

Discover the Mississippi River in Comfort with Enriching Excursions.

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Experience the essence of a place and its people. Discover the world around you. Awaken your senses. Immerse your spirit. Indulge your dreams...

We travel to explore, to learn, to understand. We believe travel should be more than just a trip, it should be a doorway to cultural insight & personal enrichment. These intimate, inclusive river cruise itineraries are designed to help you explore nuances of your destination: its food, culture, people & customs.

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