The Rhine River Is an Unexpected — and Amazing — Cruise Destination; Paula Froelich; Travel + Leisure

Germany – Upper Middle Rhine Valley

The unexpected pleasures of cruising down the Rhine.

As an active, young(ish), solo female traveler, I’ll admit: Cruises were never high on my list of things to do. In my mind, that form of travel was for families, couples, or elderly people. They also struck me as unduly expensive when traveling alone and, with all the enforced socializing and lack of exercise, downright uncomfortable.

But earlier this year I reread Mark Twain’s classic travelogues, “Innocents Abroad” and “A Tramp Abroad” — and found myself obsessing over the concept of slow travel, boats, and an ethos where the destination is the journey itself. I caught myself lingering on stories about river cruises in Europe, in smaller, chicer vessels than the ocean behemoths.

And then a friend turned me on to Avalon Waterways.

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