River or Ocean Cruise? Here’s How To Pick What’s Right For You

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River or Ocean Cruise? Here’s How To Pick What’s Right For You

13 May 2019

Cruising doesn’t always have to be on the open seas! While some love long voyages between continents with nothing but the ocean as far as the eye can see, others prefer river cruises hopping from city to city or getting a fresh perspective on your favourite place as you drift along the waterfront. Neither cruiser is wrong or right – just different. Here are our top tips on how to decide between a river cruise and an ocean cruise.

There are some definite differences between river and ocean cruises, not only in the destinations but in the cruise liners themselves. The first thing to keep in mind is that if you want the ship itself to be as much of a destination as some of the most attractive cities in the world, an ocean cruise is probably going to be right up your street. The ocean cruise ships tend to be bigger and have a wider variety of facilities; unsurprising given that there can be thousands of passengers on board. That’s not to say that river cruise liners are lacking in anything, but the focus is different. If your kids are dreaming of onboard water parks, ice rinks, climbing walls and huge outdoor movie theatres, go ahead and book that ocean liner. They’ll love it! On the other hand, if you want a luxurious and intimate approach with fewer guests and seriously customised, personal attention then a river cruise might be just the ticket. There’s still everything you could want while you’re not on shore, including luxury rooms, great food, and top-notch amenities.

Another consideration when making the choice between a river or an ocean cruise is how close to shore and shore excursions you want to be. It’s a given that on river cruises, you’ll almost always be close to shore and in many cases, will dock each day and spend more time on land exploring; and in most cases a shore excursion is included in each new place. That’s great if you want to see a variety of places or visit lesser-known towns as the smaller ships can dock faster and in smaller ports. With ocean cruises, you have more time to relax at sea and enjoy all the onboard perks in between port days. You also can pick and choose your shore excursions so if nothing takes your fancy, you don’t feel like you should go just because it’s included. Depending on the cruise you take, you could spend as little as one night cruising at sea or as many as five, so there’s quite a lot of flexibility depending on the kind of itinerary that suits you best.

And then there’s the food. Whatever option you go with, you’re probably going to come back a few kilos heavier after indulging in the incredible dining options on board. Due to their size and the number of guests, ocean cruisers will probably have more restaurant options and bigger buffets with a variety of different cuisines available. The river cruise options are generally smaller but equally incredible. Top quality ingredients and seasonal produce are the name of the game here, and cruisers often find that river cruises have cuisines which take inspiration from the areas you’re sailing around. Whichever option you go for, we can guarantee you won’t ever go hungry!

So, there you have it. River or Ocean – it’s your choice, and honestly, you can’t go wrong whatever you choose. Both promise to be an amazing getaway with memories that you’ll cherish forever.

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