Each Columbia and Snake Rivers itinerary comes complete with a Complimentary Pre-Cruise Package, providing you with a seamless way to board the ship and explore the local area. Arrive the day before your scheduled cruise date and American Cruise Lines will handle the rest. The package includes a premium hotel stay, where you can enjoy the city at your leisure. On the morning of the cruise, meet in the hotel lobby after breakfast and we will transport you to the ship to begin your cruise. All luggage will be brought directly from the hotel and placed in your stateroom aboard the ship.
*Pre-Cruise Package is not available for reservations made within 30 days of cruise date.
Situated between the waters of the Columbia and Willamette Rivers, Portland's history is forever entwined with the fortunes of the great rivers. In the golden age of riverboats, sternwheelers crossed Portland’s waterfront while steam whistles and calliopes rang out across the water. Highlights of the area include the Portland Art Museum, the International Rose Test Garden, and the famous Powell’s Bookstore, filling an entire city block.
City of Roses Tour - Complimentary Excursion
In the morning, our guide will meet us at the ship for a fun-filled, narrated tour of Portland, also known as the “City of Roses." Explore the popular downtown area, considered to be one of the “top 10” most livable cities in the world. We will cross many of the notable scenic Portland bridges including Hawthorne Bridge (1910) and Broadway Bridge (1913) as we make our way to the Rose Garden State Park. Our final stop will be to the popular International Test Garden, which features over 6,800 rose bushes representing 557 varieties. Here, you can stroll the lush grounds or visit the Rose Garden Store, offering hundreds of rose-themed items.
*Tour only offered on cruises ending in Portland, OR.
A nationally significant historic region at the western end of the Lewis & Clark Trail, Astoria is the oldest American settlement west of the Rockies. In the winter of 1805-06, the Lewis & Clark Corps of Discovery Expedition was headquartered at Fort Clatsop. In 1955, a replica of the fort was built near the original site and was eventually named a National Monument. With its steep hills and beautiful Victorian homes, Astoria has been called the "Little San Francisco of the Pacific Northwest" and has a revitalized downtown ideal for shopping and dining.
Columbia River Maritime Museum - Complimentary Excursion
In the morning, take a trolley or a leisurely 5-minute walk to the Columbia River Maritime Museum and meet with our guide for you a personalized tour of the facilities. Learn about the history of crossing the bar, known as one of the toughest and most treacherous routes in maritime history. Witness remnants of some of the actual ships that were destroyed during the river crossing, discover artifacts, and learn what makes this specific area so dangerous and feared by even the most experienced sailors.
Fort Clatsop Tour & Astoria Experience
The evening before you tour Astoria, our onboard lecturer, often Todd Weber, will provide an entertaining and historically significant portrayal of the city and the Lewis and Clark expedition which took place during the 1800s. At Fort Clatsop, a park ranger will meet with our group to explain its significance and begin a personalized tour of the grounds. Witness live demonstrations, tour the museum, and explore the exact replica of the fort where Lewis and Clark wintered in 1806. Visit the Astoria Column, a majestic tower perched high on a bluff overlooking the city and river. Enjoy outstanding views of the landscape below and our ship as it rests in port. If you are up to the challenge, walk the 164 steps up the tower to the observation deck for a once-in-a-lifetime photo opportunity.
Onboard Entertainment - David Duthie
The duo of David Duthie and Bo Ayers will entertain guests with a set of songs from the “Great American Songbook,” a collection of the most important and influential American popular songs of the 20th century. These familiar melodies are principally from Broadway theatre, musical theatre, and Hollywood musical film from the 1920s through the 1950s.
*Entertainment times, days, and performers are subject to change.
Cape Disappointment State Park
In the morning, take a scenic tour through Astoria as we journey to Cape Disappointment State Park. Here a park ranger will greet us and serve as our guide through the impressive Lewis & Clark Interpretive Center. Situated on the cliffs 200 feet above the Pacific Ocean, the Center commemorates the Corps of Discovery’s 1804-1806 expedition. Witness live demonstrations, an interactive film, and a variety of exhibits dedicated to Lewis and Clark. The impressive mural-sized “timeline” panels guide you through the exhibit while featuring many of the actual sketches, paintings, and photographs of the Corps members. This tour perfectly complements Todd Weber’s on board Lewis and Clark lectures.
Mount St. Helens, WA
Perhaps the most impactful of all landmarks in the region is Mount St. Helens. From high on an overlook, bear witness to the awesome power of the volcano whose eruption in 1980 scorched 230 square miles of forest land and forever changed the landscape. Expert guides will show you the pumice plain and lava dome as they explain the effect the volcano had on the lives of those in the surrounding towns.
Mount St. Helens Experience - Complimentary Excursion
May 18, 1980 is a day etched into the history of the United States, as the powerful eruption of Mount St. Helens drastically changed the landscape of what is now referred to as the National Volcanic Monument. On your scenic journey to the Mount St. Helens Johnston Ridge Observatory, your tour guide will provide engaging commentary regarding the eruption, how it affected the landscape and surrounding communities, and how the environment has responded naturally to the disturbance. The Observatory itself sits on a bluff near the crater, offering spectacular views of the pumice plain and blast site.
Cruising the Columbia River Gorge / Stevenson, WA
The Columbia River Gorge is a spectacular river canyon cutting the only sea-level route through the Cascade Mountain Range. A popular recreational destination, the gorge holds federally protected status as a National Scenic Area. The cliffs of the gorge look down on quaint riverfront towns and exhilarating waterfalls.
Multnomah Falls - Complimentary Excursion
A highlight of any trip to the Pacific Northwest, Multnomah Falls is sure to leave you in awe. After breakfast, our private guide will meet you at the ship’s dock right in the middle of the Columbia River Gorge, and your journey to the majestic waterfall begins. As you wind through the thick forest you will cross the impressive “Bridge of the Gods,” before finally reaching Multnomah Falls. Upon arrival, you will have time to explore the Falls on your own and walk the famous Benson Bridge to get the best vantage point for your photo opportunities.
*Fish Hatchery only offered on cruises ending in Portland, OR
Columbia River Gorge Interpretive Center - Complimentary Excursion
Enjoy a self-guided tour of the Columbia River Gorge Interpretive Center. The mission of the Center is to share the stories and natural history of Skamania County and the Columbia River Gorge with all of its visitors. Learn about the bountiful life of the Columbia River Gorge, the early culture of the First Peoples, and the transition to modern day culture.
Onboard Entertainment - Kevin Neil
Kevin Neil is a solo guitar player who brings our ship's voyage to life. His "Songs of the Sailor" performance is a collection of maritime songs and sea shanties inspired by sailors of old, while his Cowboy Kevin show features a country-style twang, reminiscent of the heroic cowboys of the Old Wes *Entertainment times, days, and performers are subject to change
Throughout your journey on the Columbia River, you will transit 8 locks, lifting the ship more than 700 feet vertically. Building upon the lectures of our onboard experts throughout the week, this excursion provides guests with an in-depth understanding of and appreciation for the engineering that enables the Dam to generate enough hydroelectric power to provide nearly 500,000 homes with electricity.
Located in the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area, between Mt. Hood and Mt. Adams on the south bank, The Dalles is a perfect spot to take photographs. Discover the area where Lewis & Clark camped at Rock Fort Camp on their historic exploration of the Louisiana Purchase territory in 1805-1806.
Columbia Gorge Discovery Center - Complimentary Excursion
As you step off the ship, you will be greeted by members of the local visitor’s center who are dressed in period-specific clothing from the pinnacle days of riverboating. Our guide will meet us at the ship for a short narrated tour of the town before arriving at the Columbia Gorge Discovery Center. Here, explore the various exhibits that highlight the volcanic upheaval and raging floods that helped to create the gorge. The highlight of the center visit includes a unique raptor exhibition where we will watch birds of prey put on an aerobatic display and learn about the protected eagles that call the gorge home.
Cascade Cliffs Winery Tour & Tasting
Experience the breathtaking views of the Columbia Gorge as we tour the vineyard at Cascade Cliffs Winery. Tour the winery accented with rustic décor, walk in the scenic vineyard, and taste a variety of award-winning wines.
Maryhill Museum of Art
Overlooking the gorge sits the Maryhill Museum of Art. Here, Native American artifacts, royal memorabilia from Queen Marie of Romania, outdoor sculptures, and a permanent collection of international chess sets adorn the museum halls. You will not only be treated to one-of-a-kind permanent collection, but also a variety of featured exhibitions.
Pendleton, OR / Richland, WA
Pendleton is known for its beautiful countryside, indigenous Native American tribes, and the network of underground tunnels created a century ago for illicit activities. The area is also famous for its lucrative wool trade in the 18th and 19th-centuries. Visit the REACH Museum in Richland which illustrates the culture and history of the region through engaging exhibits, artifacts, and tours.
The Pendleton Signature Tour
Enjoy a scenic ride through the countryside and witness the striking contrast in landscape, as you make your way to Pendleton for the day’s excursions. Upon arrival, be greeted by our private tour guide who will take you to explore Pendleton’s infamous underground city, followed by a complimentary BBQ lunch at the famous Hamley’s Restaurant. In the afternoon, travel to the Tamastslikt Cultural Institute, for a look into the storied past of the Cayuse, Umatilla, and Walla Walla Tribes. Finally, visit the famous Pendleton Woolen Mill for a tour and the chance to purchase authentic woven goods.
*This is a Signature Shore Tour. Please call (800) 460-4518 in advance to reserve this experience.
The REACH Museum
Looking through the lens of The Hanford Reach National Monument and the Columbia River, The REACH Museum illustrates the rich culture and history of Eastern Washington through engaging exhibits, artifacts, and tours. Featuring over 14,000 square feet of exhibits, the museum claims the only complete baby woolly mammoth skeleton on display.
The twin cities of Lewiston, ID, and Clarkston, WA, are known as the Northwest’s most inland seaports. Along the Snake River, you will find Hells Canyon, the deepest canyon in North America, known for its pristine scenery and thriving wildlife.
Hells Canyon Jet Boat Signature Tour
We have chartered the Hells Canyon Jet Boat to take you through the deepest canyon in America. After breakfast, the jet boat will meet you at the ship for an afternoon of adventure. Here, you will explore places most boats cannot reach on the river and witness the amazing transformation in geography from high desert to alpine forests. View ancient rock formations and native pictographs while your local Clarkston guide provides interesting stories about the region’s history and canyon formation. Enjoy a catered luncheon at the exclusive Garden Creek Ranch before heading back to the ship, where we will celebrate your return during our nightly cocktail hour.
*This is a Signature Shore Tour. Please call (800) 460-4518 in advance to reserve this experience.
* For cruises departing from Clarkston, the Jet Boat Tour is a pre-cruise excursion. Please call (800) 460-4518 in advance for more information
Nez Perce National Historic Park - Complimentary
Led by an expert guide, take a narrated tour of this historic park. Hear stories of the Nez Perce tribe, best remembered for having saved the Lewis and Clark Expedition team from starvation following their journey through the Bitterroot Mountains. Witness preserved sites, stories, and artifacts associated with the Nez Perce tribe.
*Tour only offered on cruises ending in Clarkston, WA
After breakfast, explore the scenic city of Clarkston at your leisure. If you need assistance with departure travel arrangements, be sure to ask our onboard hotel manager.
Note: On reverse itineraries, we offer a Pre-Cruise Package which includes a jet boat tour of Hells Canyon. Call a Cruise Specialist to learn more.