You can take a paddlewheel cruise up the Mississippi and Ohio rivers

American Countess riverboat paddlewheel cruise
American Queen Voyages

Can’t decide between a cruise vacation and a road trip to visit a variety of small towns and big cities across the U.S.? Why not do both? The cruise company American Queen Voyages offers cruises across the country that stop at dozens of our nation’s most picturesque and historic locations, and you’ll be cruising the nation’s mighty rivers aboard a classic paddlewheel boat.

The company’s paddlewheel river cruises along the Mississippi stretch sections of the river from New Orleans all the way to Minneapolis. On cruises of the Upper Mississippi, fans of Mark Twain can stop in Hannibal, Missouri, to see the historic town that inspired so many of the author’s stories, and cruises on the Lower Mississippi give you time to take in the musical heritage of Memphis and New Orleans.

For those interested in traveling in Tennessee, the company has a riverboat cruise with stops in Nashville and Memphis taking in the music, culture, spirits and of course the barbecue the state is known for. The boat starts its trip in Nashville, and cruises down the Cumberland River making stops in Kentucky and Missouri before winding its way back to Tennessee and landing in Memphis.

MORE: 5 cruises where you don’t need a passport

In the Pacific Northwest, American Queen Voyages boats cruise the Columbia and Snake rivers, making stops in wine country — and some of these itineraries include on-board wine-tastings as well.

If you lean toward luxury, you’re in luck. There are plenty of upscale rooms for rent including luxury suites with private or open verandas, and deluxe suites with open verandas. For those with a tighter budget, there are more economical options as well, including the single inside stateroom which still offer luxurious touches, but is geared more toward independent travelers.

American Queen Voyages

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Furthermore, for those awaiting the holidays, American Queen Voyages has a slew of Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s trips. The cruise line is offering a total of 14 different itineraries for its themed trips that leave from various ports, including Memphis, Spokane and New Orleans to name a few.

All inclusive perks include the following:

  • One night pre-cruise hotel stay.
  • Ground transfers between hotel and vessel.
  • Unlimited guided tours.
  • Unlimited beverages.
  • Dining in multiple venues, including in-room dining.
  • Unlimited Wi-Fi.
  • Onboard entertainment and enrichment.
  • Bicycles and hiking sticks for exploring ports of call.

Are you ready to take a riverboat cruise?

Lauren Alexander contributed to this report


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