A leader in its niche, winning eight industry awards for Best River Cruise Line, this specialty 15-vessel cruise line has exceptional staterooms and itineraries that showcase not only Europe, but also Vietnam and Zambezi. Its Austrian founder worked with several of the other major river-cruise companies before launching his own company in 2002. Since then, AmaWaterways has introduced nine new ships in Europe: Amabella, Amacello, Amadagio, Amadante, Amadolce, Amalegra, Amalyra, Amaverde, and Amavida. In 2013, the yacht-inspired Amaprima and Amacerto join the fleet. The refurbished 212-passenger Amakatarina cruises between Moscow and St. Petersburg.
AmaWaterways’ luxury ships are among the newest of the European river cruisers operating today. Designed exclusively for the English-speaking market, the ships have staterooms equipped with flat-screen TVs and Internet, French balconies on the top two decks, elevator, whirlpool, and free bicycles for exploration ashore. Impressive public rooms use designer fabrics, chic furniture, and subtle lighting for an upscale boutique hotel atmosphere.
They operate a wide range of itineraries in Europe on the Rhine, Main, Danube, and Mosel rivers; and in Russia on the Volga, Svir, and Neva rivers. The company also offers Christmas-market cruises from late November through December. Reserve April to see tulip blossoms cruising Holland and Belgium. 800/626–0126. www.amawaterways.com.