USA River Cruises Inc has been specializing in small ship sales for over 20 years, allowing us to become very familiar with all of the vendors we represent. We take great pride in only offering the best of the best when it comes to small ship cruising. Our cruise agents have the opportunities to go on these ships so that they can match their clients with a perfect vacation. Our partnership with these companies has helped make the small ship industry very successful.
We are one of the only cruise agencies in the USA that specializes only in small ship cruises. As a result, we are very careful which vendors we choose to offer because we want our clients to have the best experience possible. This page represents companies who strive for excellence and ones we are excited to be working with.
American Cruise Lines
American Cruise Lines, the largest cruise line in the U.S., leads the way with the newest fleet of riverboats and small cruise ships in the country. With more than 35 itineraries and the continuous introduction of innovative new ships, the company has elevated the standard of cruising on America’s legendary rivers and waterways.
American Cruise Lines brings premium comfort and personalized service together to offer the most curated experiences on both coasts, the Mississippi, and Columbia Rivers. The line offers the largest staterooms in the industry with all the features of a fine hotel, including full-size bathrooms, and private balconies. Subtle differences, like interior entrances to each room make such a difference onboard to provide guests with private views through floor-to-ceiling glass doors.
In 2018, American Cruise Lines will be introducing a new class of modern riverboat which will not only set the standard for U.S. river cruising—it will redefine it. The first in the series, American Song, will cruise the Mississippi River in the fall. The new riverboat integrates contemporary design without sacrificing the intimate atmosphere and comfortable accommodations for which American Cruise Lines is known. Thoughtfully designed to bring the outside world in, American Song boasts sweeping views throughout the ship, with its inspiring, four-story glass atrium, spectacular spacious lounges, and furnished, private balconies in each stateroom.
As our nation’s leader, American Cruise Lines is able to offer guests a customized experience on each of our 35 plus itineraries which visit the Pacific Northwest, Alaska, New England, the Southeast, and the Mississippi River. On board and ashore, we work with our guests to accommodate specific interests, tastes, and needs. Each excursion is meticulously planned and supported with personal guides who are well-versed in the history of the region. Our carefully selected onboard naturalists, historians, and musicians present award-winning enrichment programs that bring each destination to life.
We encourage you to inquire about the premium experiences provided only by American Cruise Lines.
American Queen Steamboat Company
The mighty rivers of the United States once served as the great highways of early exploration and inspired dreams of discovery. Today, American Queen Steamboat Company® re-creates the same sense of wonder, excitement and inspiration, with all the convenience and comfort of modern luxury aboard two of the largest and most elegant riverboats in the world, the American Queen® and the American Empress®. Our newest addition to the vessel fleet, the American Duchess™, allows you to travel in the wake of legends, as you are transported to an era of leisurely and romantic travel.
At American Queen Steamboat Company, we are both proud and honored to share the dream of American river cruising. As such, we maintain a commitment to excellence that far exceeds expectations. The welcome appearance of each of our vessels is richly complemented by a culture of gracious service, elegant decor, rousing entertainment and rewarding enrichment experiences. All of this is accentuated with pre-cruise deluxe hotel stays, remarkable shore excursions included in every port of call, and a wealth of complimentary onboard amenities.
The largest riverboat ever built, the grand American Queen is a gracious and elegant triumph of American ingenuity, sailing the Mississippi River and her tributaries. Longer than a football field, towering six decks in height and laced with fanciful gingerbread trim, she is a marvel of modern engineering. Her journeys through the heartland offer a unique perspective on American history, culture and landscape with convenient departures from some of America’s most iconic river port cities including Memphis, Nashville, New Orleans, Cincinnati, Louisville, St. Louis and Minneapolis. In April 2014, American Queen Steamboat Company began serving the Pacific Northwest with the opulence and grandeur of the American Empress, the largest riverboat west of the Mississippi. We’ve added the newest, all-suite paddlewheeler, the American Duchess, to the Mississippi River in August 2017, joining the American Queen in the heartland of America.
Step aboard and delight in the luxurious modern amenities, gracious service and endless authentic experiences that are synonymous with American Queen Steamboat Company river cruising.
Finding Our Un-ness
It took grit, hard work, and a bit of luck, but the stars aligned when UnCruise Adventures came to be. Celebrating 20 years of small ship cruise adventures in 2016, UnCruise Adventures operates from offices at historic Fishermen’s Terminal in Seattle, Washington and Juneau, Alaska. Connection and innovation have been at the heart ever since. Driven by a fearless team and a commitment of leaving the beaten path and really exploring — experiencing, even — what the world has to offer.
Our mission: To provide our guests an enriching adventure travel experience and inspire an appreciation of local cultures and the natural world.
We understand that ecosystems are fragile and important to the health of us all. And we know first-hand the impact our adventures have on sustaining local communities. One of the key components of our company’s mission statement is to actively promote environmental protection through education and initiatives that promote responsible travel.
In 1996, American Safari Cruises pioneered yacht cruising in Alaska and over time, added new destinations, adventures, vessels, and ultimately, changed our name to UnCruise Adventures. Today, we sail into the next decade of adventure and can’t wait to share this unbelievable world with you.
Captain Dan Blanchard, CEO
We’ve all heard a tall tale or two, but when it comes to Captain Dan Blanchard—well, he’s the real thing. Growing up in Washington state, he has always been around boats. Even as a kid, Dan worked alongside other family members restoring the family’s wooden tug. And the reward of all that hard work paid off in a big way—exploring winding waterways, beachcombing on remote shores, oyster picking and clam digging, learning to skin dive, getting up close with incredible wildlife and cultural encounters, and enjoying a lifetime on the water. At this point, it’s just part of his genetic makeup.
Victory Cruise Lines
Victory is a small ship cruise line with modern technology and big plans. Cruising through the Great Lakes, the St. Lawrence seaway or the Atlantic coast, we really give you a taste of the life in these magical places. Carrying no more than 202 passengers on each cruise, we are the only cruise company offering ports of call on all 5 Great Lakes, allowing us to bring you the sophistication the great cities of the region like Toronto, Montreal, Detroit, Chicago, Milwaukee and Cleveland have to offer. We offer the most in-depth tours and shore experiences available on all our itineraries. Our tours on the Great Lakes are customized with you in mind for an unforgettable cruise experience.
Blount Small Ships
Founded in 1966, Blount Small Ship Adventures offers unique itineraries that “go where the big ships cannot” in the United States, Canada and Caribbean. Blount’s small ships carry fewer than 84 passengers, providing a personal and intimate onboard atmosphere. With itineraries designed with the destination in mind, their small ships are built different by design — each vessel featuring a retractable pilot, a 6 ½ foot draft to cruise shallow waterways and a bow ramp that allows for easy disembarkation on beaches and remote locations. With a casual dress policy and BYOB policy, sailing with Blount feels as if you are cruising on a friend’s yacht. Onboard experts, historians and naturalists are hosted on select itineraries as well as local musical entertainment.
Only Blount’s ships can help you explore America’s great waterways, like New York’s Erie Canal, a waterway that many thought could not be navigated by a cruise ship. Thanks to the retractable pilot house invented by BSSA founder and ship builder Luther Blount, Blount’s cruise ships slip under the famous low bridges of the Erie Canal, past small towns and historic port villages, deep into the heart of America’s past. Blount is the only overnight cruise line able to offer signature itineraries from New York to Chicago and Montreal. Other Blount itineraries feature the Great Lakes, New England Islands, Atlantic Coastal Waterway and Caribbean Islands. For the traveler who has seen it all, Blount Small Ship Adventures offers a different kind of cruising experience. Are you ready to go BEYOND cruising with Blount Small Ship Adventures?
Headquartered in Warren, RI, Blount Small Ship Adventures has long prided itself on offering a casual cruising environment for travelers who want to go where the big ships cannot. Built on a tradition of adventure, the company’s founder Luther Blount, a prolific inventor and shipbuilder, began building boats in 1947 and then personally delivered them around the globe discovering adventure along the way. In 1966, Luther decided that he wanted to show his friends and family all of the incredible destinations he’d been exploring, so he began building passenger boats. With the mind of an engineer and the heart of an explorer, Luther built unique boats with patented features. He later coined the term “small ship cruising.” Today, the company is still family owned and operated. Luther’s daughter Nancy is at the helm of Blount Small Ship Adventures, carrying on her father’s tradition of innovative small ship cruising.
At a young age, Todd Weber became enthralled with stories of the natives, explorers, and fur traders of American History. After years of reading journals and studying historical accounts of the fascinating characters of America’s past, he became self-taught on the facts and the details of this time in history, creating authentic clothing, firearms and tools of these bygone eras. Along with being an artist and jeweler, Todd worked as a coordinator and instructor in outdoor education. He now guides on small ships on the Columbia River and throughout Alaska, leading his own tours in the West. Todd also brings presentations to various organizations around the country, sharing his appreciation for the stamina, ingenuity and character that existed in those who helped shape the history of the American West.
Check Todd’s cruise schedule to enjoy a week of history with him!
Best of the Northwest
Best of the Northwest was a website created out of love for locally-owned businesses right here in the Pacific Northwest. Two local travel business owners wanted one website where they could really show off the excellent things to do, places to stay, tours to take and more! If you’re coming to the Northwest for a Puget Sound or Columbia River cruise, check out the Best of the Northwest website to get ideas for mini-vacations and tours before, during or after your cruise.
Pearl Seas Cruises
Pearl Seas Cruises defines Luxury Adventure™ every day with enticing destinations that bring regional culture and natural beauty to life. As the premier small cruise ship on the Canadian Maritimes, St. Lawrence Seaway, Great Lakes, and Cuba, we offer the excitement and romance of the sea in an intimate and personalized setting.
Aboard our exquisitely appointed ship, Pearl Mist, guests can immerse themselves in the unique character and customs of each captivating port. The enrichment program begins on the ship and continues each day through exciting shore excursions led by our knowledgeable expert guides.
At more than 300 square feet, our staterooms are luxurious and spacious. Guests will find everything they would expect form a world-class hotel, including full-size bathrooms, flat screen satellite TV’s, and complimentary Wi-Fi. The views from our staterooms are always magnificent and can be enjoyed comfortably through floor-to-ceiling sliding glass doors or by stepping out onto a fully furnished, private balcony. Other onboard amenities include a well-stocked library, dining salon with panoramic views, three spacious observation decks, several lounges, and an elevator serving all stateroom decks.
At Pearl Seas, fine cuisine is an important part of the cruise experience. Our chefs create a delectable array of local flavors and traditional fare for each and every meal. Each menu offers something for everyone and changes to complement the season and the region guests are traveling. All dietary needs and special requests are handled with precision and care. Meals are prepared to order and served in the gracious Dining Room where all guests can be accommodated at once and every seat offers a panoramic view of the passing scenery.
To experience the best in small ship cruising, Explore Well with Pearl Seas Cruises.
AmaWaterways was founded in 2002 by three families, but our river cruise story began well before that. President Rudi Schreiner was born in Vienna, at the heart of the Danube. His love of design drew him to architecture, but his even greater love of travel drew him to places far and wide. In 1975, he traveled to South America for a journalism assignment on the Amazon. It was here that he designed his first ship, using what he could find to build a raft that would take him up and down the river during the next 7 months. Soon thereafter he started working in travel, creating unique tour experiences in Europe.
Viking Cruises is a family-run international cruise line with river cruises on 3 continents and ocean cruises worldwide. Viking was founded in 1997 with the purchase of four ships in Russia. Currently their fleet is more than 60 vessels – state of the art ships that continue to receive industry accolades every year. Viking is the World’s Leading River Cruise Line, and continues to build positive industry exposure to cruising clientele.
Paul Gaugin Cruises
Discover the world’s most coveted destinations with Paul Gauguin Cruises
James A. Michener called Bora Bora “the most beautiful island in the world,” and his Bali Hai, immortalized in song in the musical South Pacific, is believed to have been modeled on Moorea. Painter Paul Gauguin came to Tahiti for inspiration, and W. Somerset Maugham’s novel The Moon and Sixpence was inspired by that artistic journey. French Polynesia continues to create wonder in those who visit—and you can experience it in just one week on our best-selling itinerary.
As the specialists to this idyllic region, Paul Gauguin Cruises reveals the ancient traditions, breathtaking scenic beauty, easygoing spirit, and warm hospitality of French Polynesia as no one else can. We have also been given the honor of being voted Global Traveler’s “Best Small-Ship Cruise Line” winner 2017, as well as Travel + Leisure’s “#1 Midsized-Ship Ocean Cruise Line” winner 2017, both for the second year in a row.
Designed specifically to sail these turquoise waters, The Gauguin also brings on board the Polynesian culture and joie de vivre that only the experts to the region can share. You’ll also enjoy extraordinary value, with luxurious oceanview accommodations, all meals plus select wines and spirits in restaurants on board, room service, watersports, private beach retreats, and entertainment included throughout your voyage.
Guests of The Gauguin also enjoy educational programming for adults and families, provided aboard ship by WCS. Throughout the year, a series of lectures will enlighten guests of the ship about marine science and wildlife conservation in the South Pacific and beyond. Additionally, during the summer months and holiday season, WCS will inspire guests to value nature through an experiential family program. Paul Gauguin Cruises is proud to collaborate with WCS in support of a healthy and sustainable planet.
All along the way, you’ll enjoy warm Polynesian hospitality, luxurious amenities, gourmet dining, and our extraordinary all-inclusive value—all at savings of 50% off standard cruise fares plus included roundtrip airfare from Los Angeles!
The Paul Gauguin can accommodate just 332 guests and offers an informal ambience which reflects the relaxed nature of the region. Tahitians who serve as staff, entertainers and storytellers called Les Gauguines add a uniquely Polynesian touch to life on board. This is an all-inclusive experience, with airfare from LAX, gratuities, 24-hour room service, beverages including select wines and spirits, and private island retreats. Voyages range from seven to 14 nights, with fares starting at $3,995.