Historic South & Golden Isles-American Independence

Can you cruise a small ship in winter? Yes, you can. One of our annual favorites is the Historic South & Golden Isles cruise, 8-days from Jacksonville to Charleston (or reverse). With three ships cruising the Intracoastal Waterways from Charleston to Jacksonville, you have your choice of cabin accommodations and departure date.

Historic South
The ports of the South are living history! Explore wildlife refuges of untouched wilderness, the grace and beauty of antebellum society, and the layers of culture evident in all aspects of the cities, from the architecture to the cuisine!

Golden Isles
The Intracoastal Waterway is a series of protected bays, canals and rivers that wind between the eastern coastline of the US and outlying islands. Because you’re not out on open water, the chance of seasickness is decreased when compared to an ocean cruise.

Cruise Details

Clock8 Days & 7 Nights

Double Occupancy from $4,530 pp/do*

Single Occupancyfrom $6,310 pp

CalendarNovember 20, 2024 | November 27, 2024 | December 4, 2024 | December 11, 2024 | December 23, 2024 | December 31, 2024

Book Now Request More Info

or call 800.578.1479

*Per person/double occupancy. Special single rates apply where listed. Excludes port fees.
Itineraries may operate in reverse.

Your Itinerary

    1Embark in Charleston, SC
    Charleston is dripping with history! Walk the cobblestone streets with gas-lit lamps as you learn how Charleston was the star location for many Revolutionary War battles, pirate lore, and Civil War sieges.

    2Beaufort, SC
    What could be more southern than a horse-drawn carriage tour of Beaufort? The tour will take you past buildings that have been preserved from their beginnings as pre-Civil War shops and later used as field hospitals or offices during the Civil War. An optional tour would be the Low Country Heritage tour to St. Helena Island where you’ll learn about life on a Southern plantation. The host of this tour will be onboard the ship in the evening for a private concert. If you want to venture out on your own, Parris Island Museum is a great free museum with military artifacts focusing on the history of the US Marine Corps. Hunting Island State Park is 5000 acres of walking through beaches, forests and marches.

    3Hilton Head Island, SC
    Let’s see some Alligators! We’ll head into the Sea Pines Forest Preserve in search of wildlife… including the American Alligator! The 600-acre preserve is home to many indigenous animals and plants, which your guide will expertly talk you through. It’s also just a great day to have your camera out and record some beautiful southern landscapes! In the afternoon, you’ll be able to relax on board or head into town for some shopping!

    4Savannah, GA
    The epitome of Southern wealth and elegance, Savannah is a historic preserve of 19th century architecture and opulence! You can choose from many tour options, including the Mighty Eighth Air Force Museum, a Trolley Tour of the city, or a Guided Walking Tour through the River St. section. But if you’re really brave… you’ll try the evening ghost tour! Go with someone you trust, so you have a hand to hold.

    5Cruising Intracoastal Waterway
    Cruise this classic water way. It is known as the highway for north and southbound East Coast cruisers, and an east-west path along the outskirts of the Gulf of Mexico.

    6St. Simons Island & Jekyll Island, GA
    These islands have so much to offer! You won’t be able to decide. Just try to cram in as much as you can in your schedule, and have your camera ready at all times! St. Simons Island was the location of the Battle of Bloody Marsh, and you can tour the site with a private guide. This tour will also visit Christ Church, a beloved landmark on the island. You can choose to go shrimpin’ onboard the Lady Jane Shrimp boat! Watch for other wildlife, like pelicans and dolphins, while the captain takes you to his favorite spot. Tour Jekyll Island. This tour will take you to the Sea Turtle Village, a nesting ground for sea turtles, and a self-guided tour of the Georgia Sea Turtle Center. Then a tram tour will take you through the Island Historic District, where you’ll tour one of the island mansions and learn about the Jekyll Island Club! Explore Jekyll Island on your own on a bike. Get a trail map and explore the 20 miles of paved trails. Guided horseback tours are available on Driftwood Beach. Reservations required with Victoria’s Carriages and Trail Rides. Take a 3-hour guided tour on Jekyll Creek by kayak with a naturalist leading you through the salt marshes. Or rent a canoe on Rixen Pond.

    7Amelia Island, FL
    Discover the natural beauty of Amelia Island, with its miles of quartz beaches and rolling sand dunes. Fernandina Beach, the island's only city, now harbors a treasure trove of history, antiques, and collectables. Join a walking tour of Centre Street's Historic District, with 50 blocks of restored 19th-century Victorian homes and shops.

    8Disembark in Jacksonville, FL
    Take in the beautiful weather of northern Florida as you disembark in lovely Amelia Island. Reflect on the great time you had the wonderful memories you made along the way.


Cabin Categories

Cabin Single Price Double Price
Owner's Suite (Private Balcony)$8,085 pp
AAC (Private Balcony)$5,715 pp
AAL (Private Balcony)$5,510 pp
A$4,530 pp
Single (Private Balcony)$6,585

Ship Read more about the American Independence

*Prices may vary due to seasonality

Onboard Experience

The American Cruise Line fleet of ships are the newest and most environmentally friendly small ships in the US. The cruise line prides itself on their hospitable staff, and that you’ll be graciously received no matter which ship you cruise on. The large staterooms with interior entrances ensure you have a relaxed, private area to watch the river from, or visit any of the many onboard lounges. Daily entertainment will be brought onboard, including musicians, historians and naturalists.

Regionally-Inspired Menus

American Cruise Lines uses fresh, local ingredients to show off the culinary glory of the region you’re cruising in. On the Mississippi River, that could mean Andouille Gumbo, a po’boy with red beans and rice, and bourbon pecan pie. In New England, you could find Littleneck clam ceviche on the menu followed by a spiced apple pudding with maple whipped cream. In the Pacific Northwest, you’ll find fresh fish on the menu, including shrimp bisque or Dungeness Crab cake, and a marionberry cheesecake that’ll make your mouth water! Your ship will provide you with a list of all the locally-sourced ingredients when you unpack.

Eagle Society

Once you’ve cruised aboard any American Cruise Line ship, you are an Eagle Society member. It’s free to be a member, but your loyalty to American Cruise Lines is greatly rewarded. You’ll receive Eagle Society luggage tags, and member-only gifts when you board each cruise. After 3 cruises, you’ll receive complimentary premium shore excursions. After 10 cruises, you’ll get a complimentary 11th cruise. There are special Eagle Society cruise dates every year. Plus all Eagle Society member benefits can be used when booking with USA River Cruises, plus you’ll still be eligible for our loyal customer benefits as well.

Book Today

Historic South & Golden Isles-American Independence

Book Now Request More Info

or call 800.578.1479