While Europe is the epicenter of river cruising, the popular form of travel continues to expand to other parts of the world. In 2012 river cruises returned to America’s heartland with two paddle wheelers, while a pioneering company introduced a new product in Africa. Meanwhile, new itineraries and ships continue to be introduced in Asia — both on the Yangtze River in China and on the Mekong in Vietnam and Cambodia. Here is a sampling of new river cruises and ships outside of Europe. — Theresa Norton Masek
AmaWaterways last year introduced cruises on the Chobe River aboard the Zambezi Queen. The ship travels along the banks of Chobe National Park, where guests can view elephants, leopards, lions, sable and buffalo. The river cruise is combined with three land tours that include South Africa, Kruger National Park, the Serengeti, Zimbabwe, Ngorongoro or Mount Kilimanjaro. Each tour ends with two nights in Victoria Falls.
AmaWaterways also operates 16-day packages to Vietnam and Cambodia, which include an eight-day cruise on the Mekong River; a cruise-only option is also available. The cruises are aboard the 124-passenger AmaLotus and the 92-passenger La Marguerite. The land part of the trip includes two nights in Hanoi, an overnight in Ha Long Bay, three nights in Siem Reap and two nights in Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon).
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