Northwest Pioneers Cruise

Experience the historic journey of the intrepid explorers Lewis and Clark, while admiring the magnificent views of the Pacific Northwest. Retrace the last leg of the Corps of Discovery Expedition that began on the Mississippi River in 1804 and finally reached the Pacific Ocean in 1806.

Visit St. Helens and bear witness to the awesome power of the once active volcano. Get an up-close view of Multnomah Falls, the 2nd tallest waterfall in the country. Enjoy the scenic views and abundant wildlife of the Columbia River Gorge.

Coming to the Columbia & Snake Rivers in 2019 - American Song, the first modern riverboat in the country.  Click here to learn how this new ship is revolutionizing U.S. river cruising.

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Cruise Itinerary

Ports of Call
Portland, OR
Astoria, OR
Mount St. Helens, WA
Portland, OR
Stevenson, WA
Hood River, OR
The Dalles, OR
Richland, WA
Pendleton, OR
Clarkston, WA
Clarkston, WA

Northwest Pioneers Cruise

From the high desert of the interior to the mountain forests of the Columbia River Gorge, this 11-day journey is an epic course through a rich tapestry of ever-changing landscapes, thriving wildlife habitats, and fascinating human endeavors.


Ports of Call

  • Complimentary Package
  • Portland, OR
  • Astoria, OR
  • Mount St. Helens, WA
  • Portland, OR
  • Stevenson, WA
  • Hood River, OR
  • The Dalles, OR
  • Richland, WA
  • Richland, WA
  • Pendleton, OR
  • Clarkston, WA
  • Clarkston, WA

Day by Day

Reverse itineraries available. Please contact your Cruise Specialist for more information. Excursions subject to change.

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Complimentary Package

Each Columbia & 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 Packages must be reserved at least 30 days before your cruise date.

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Day 1
Portland, OR

At the confluence of the Columbia and Willamette Rivers, Portland was once a sanctuary for pioneers. Today, the city is surrounded by national parkland but also features an array of museums and shopping areas. Arrive a day early and visit the Evergreen Aviation and Space Museum or the Portland Art Museum.

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Day 2
Astoria, OR

The oldest American settlement west of the Rockies, the town of Astoria is steeped in culture and tradition, with more than 70 Victorian-era homes lining its historic streets. Visit a replica of Fort Clatsop and learn about what the Lewis and Clark Corps of Discovery Expedition endured on their pioneering journey into the West. Explore the Columbia River Maritime Museum, a tribute to mariners around the globe for their service on the high seas.

US river cruises

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 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.

Cruising the Columbia river

Fort Clatsop & 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 camped in the winter of 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.

River boat cruises

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.

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Day 3
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 environment and the lives of those in the surrounding towns.

Columbia river scenic cruises

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.

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Day 4
Portland, OR

Since the late 19th-century, Portland has been referred to as “The City of Roses,” due to its ideal climate for growing these beautiful perennials. Explore this second largest city of the Pacific Northwest and discover its rich culture and history.

Columbia river cruise tour

Views from the Vista House - Complimentary Excursion

Explore Portland on this city tour which will highlight downtown, local bridges, and the Vista House. Built in 1917, the Vista House serves as a rest stop observatory for travelers on the old Columbia River Gorge Highway and as a memorial honoring Oregon’s pioneers—particularly those who made their way down the Columbia River. Enjoy the incredible scenic views at this historic site.

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Day 5
Stevenson, WA

Multnomah Falls is an awesome sight to behold. After cruising past the waterfall, enjoy an up-close view of one of North America's tallest waterfalls. Stroll along the footpath to Benson Bridge for the best view of this natural wonder. Explore the village of Stevenson, easily accessible from our dock, offering small town charm and a unique Northwest flair.

Small ship cruises

Multnomah Falls - Complimentary Excursion

A highlight of any trip to the Pacific Northwest is Multnomah Falls, the second tallest year-round waterfall in the U.S.  After breakfast, our private guide will meet you at the ship’s dock along the Columbia River Gorge to begin your journey. As you wind through the thick forest, 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.


Bonneville Dam

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.

US river boat trips

Columbia River Gorge Interpretive Center - Complimentary Excursion

Enjoy a self-guided tour of the Columbia River Gorge Interpretive Center, which showcases the area's unique history and cultural diversity. From the Native American tribes that inhabited the gorge to the expedition of Lewis and Clark and 19th-century loggers, learn of the bountiful life on the gorge as you explore this amazing museum.

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Day 6
Hood River, OR

At the base of Mount Hood lies the sleepy town of Hood River. The old trading post is most famous as the terminus of the Mount Hood Railroad, where timber and produce would be transferred to ships and sent downriver. Now the historic railroad is a highlight of the area, winding its way high into the mountains for unprecedented views of the Gorge and the tallest peak in Oregon.


Western Antique Aeroplane & Automobile Museum - Complimentary Excursion

The Western Antique Aeroplane & Automobile Museum is dedicated to the preservation of all means of transportation. Enjoy viewing the cars, planes, motorcycles, military vehicles, and more, which are housed in this 3.5-acre indoor hangar. Rather than just refinishing the outside surface, engines are rebuilt so all are operable, resulting in one of the largest collections of antique planes and cars that are still in working condition.

Mt Hood Valley Railway Tour

Mount Hood Railway

Travel on the Mount Hood Railway and journey through woods, orchards, and vineyards to witness picturesque views of Mount Hood and Mount Adams. Afterward, enjoy a short stop at Parkdale for a leisurely walk, before the relaxing return ride.

This is a Signature shore excursion and should be reserved in advance. Please call (800) 460-4518 for information.

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Day 7
The Dalles, OR

Located between Mount Hood and Mount Adams, The Dalles is famous for being the last stop on the historic Oregon Trail. To the pioneers, the terrain was treacherous; to today's visitors, it is simply stunning. Overlooking the Columbia River Gorge is Cascade Cliffs Winery, the ideal place to spend an afternoon with expert sommeliers enjoying the bounty of the fertile Columbia Valley.


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.

Cruise the Pacific Northwest

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 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.

Explore the various exhibits that describe 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 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, a family-owned business established in 2011. Led by expert sommeliers, tour the winery, stroll through the scenic vineyard, and taste a variety of award-winning Italian-inspired wines.

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Day 8
Richland, WA

Incorporated in 1910, Richland sits at confluence of the Yakima and Columbia River. Enjoy strolling along its picturesque waterfront which offers walking trials, antique shops, and several wineries. This vibrant city is also home to a variety of theaters, art galleries, and museums. Visit the REACH Museum, a popular destination which illustrates the unique culture and history of the region through over 14,000 square feet of exhibits.

Small ship cruising

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.

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Day 9
Pendleton, OR

A charming city in Umatilla, OR, Pendleton began as a European-American commercial center around 1851. Incorporated as a city in 1880, 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 Pendleton Woolen Mill and Museum to learn about the town's weaving process that has produced world famous woolens since 1901.

US river cruising

The Pendleton Experience

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 excursion and should be reserved in advance. Please call (800) 460-4518 for information.

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Day 10
Clarkston, WA

One of the Pacific Northwest's most inland seaports, Clarkston is located on the Snake River, near the famous Hells Canyon. The 10-mile wide canyon was carved out from significant events occurring 15,000 years ago, including a flood from Glacial Lake Bonneville in Utah. Once the destination for miners, explorers, and settlers, Hells Canyon is now a popular recreation area.

Tour Hells Canyon

Hells Canyon Jet Boat Adventure

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.

For cruises departing from Portland, this is a Signature shore excursion and should be reserved in advance. For cruises departing from Clarkston, the Jet Boat Adventure is offered as part of our Premium Pre-Cruise Package. Please call (800) 460-4518 in advance for more information.

Guided tour excursions

Nez Perce National Historic Park - Complimentary Excursion

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.

Please Note: This excursion is only available on cruises ending in Clarkston.

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Day 11
Clarkston, WA

Take in the beautiful views of Clarkston one last time before enjoying a regionally inspired breakfast. Let our gracious onboard crew assist you with your travel arrangements.


Immerse yourself in the sights, sounds, and tastes of the Pacific Northwest. Experience the breathtaking landscapes, exceptional shore excursions, and onboard experts that bring you closer in touch with the pioneers who came before us.

Your Cruise Includes

American Song

The American River Cruise Revolution is here with American Song, the flagship in the new series of contemporary riverboats from American Cruise Lines. As the first modern riverboat ever in the U.S., American Song is introducing many pioneering innovations to America’s waters.

With a capacity of just 190 guests, this new ship has the modern design features and contemporary styling that today’s traveler has come to expect. Featured are lounges soaring 40 feet above the water with triple the glass of other riverboats, offering astounding views. American Song also showcases a four-story glass-enclosed atrium with a large domed skylight, which serves as the central gathering point for the entire ship.

Our new suite design allows for unprecedented comfort while traveling, beginning with the new Grand Suites featuring 900 square feet of private space. These spacious suites include two glass walls and a wraparound private balcony. Complimentary room service during select mealtimes is available for every stateroom, but the Grand Suites offer ample space to host small cocktail parties or private dinner events.

Experience the American River Cruise Revolution on American Song cruising the Columbia & Snake Rivers in 2019.

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Grand Suite (Private Balcony)


American Song features the first ever Grand Suite. This luxurious suite measures over 900 sq. ft. and offers 270◦ of panoramic views through floor-to-ceiling glass windows. Sliding glass doors lead out to a wrap-around balcony complete with a private dining area, the perfect place to enjoy breakfast room service or watch the sun set. Each Grand Suite features a separate bedroom and living area, ideal for gathering with family and friends after an invigorating day of exploration.

Owner's Suite (Private Balcony)


Each Owner’s Suite offers the finest accommodations with unsurpassed views of the passing scenery. A spectacular 600 sq. ft. of space is your private sanctuary to spread out and make yourself at home. This spacious suite features a full-size bathroom, as well as a separate bedroom and living area. Floor-to-ceiling sliding glass doors let light pour in and allow private panoramic views from every vantage point. An expansive private balcony is a perfect place to savor a calm afternoon or to enjoy breakfast as the sun rises over the riverbank. 

Veranda Suite (Private Balcony)


With a generous 405 sq. ft. of relaxing space, each Veranda suite includes a private walk-out balcony to enjoy the panoramic views. Considered one of the finest staterooms on any cruise ship, guests will enjoy full-size bathrooms and large living area with sliding glass door.

AAM (Private Balcony)


Located on the top deck, these spacious staterooms feature commanding views of the passing river landscapes. At 328 sq. ft., there is plenty of room to enjoy the tasteful comfort of your surroundings. These staterooms have all the comforts of a fine hotel and feature floor-to-ceiling sliding glass doors with a private balcony to offer panoramic views from every angle.

AAC (Private Balcony)


AAC staterooms are conveniently located on the third deck and offer all of the comforts of a fine hotel. Complete with a private balcony and floor-to-ceiling sliding glass doors, these staterooms provide spectacular views of the Mississippi River and the surrounding landscape. At 316 sq. ft., these staterooms also offer a sitting area, desk full-size bathrooms.

AAL (Private Balcony)


AAL staterooms can be found on the second deck and offer a luxurious 304 sq. ft. of living space. Each room is equipped with plush seating, full-size bathroom, and a private balcony with large sliding glass doors that offer great views of the Mississippi scenery. These staterooms are the epitome of comfort and relaxation.

AAR (Private Balcony)


AAR staterooms on the 2nd deck offer complete comfort with approximately 285 sq. ft. of living space, full-size bathrooms, and floor-to-ceiling sliding glass doors that lead out to a furnished private balcony. These staterooms also feature a large sitting area, ideal for getting together with friends.

AAG (Private Balcony)


AAG staterooms are conveniently located on the main deck with easy access to the dining room. At a spacious 304 sq. ft. of living space, each room features a full-size bathroom, and a furnished private balcony, offering spectacular views of the passing landscapes. Also included is a writing desk and large sitting area.

Single (Private Balcony)


Perfect for the solo traveler, our Single staterooms offer all of the amenities you expect from a fine hotel. At 250 sq. ft., these staterooms have spacious bathrooms and large sliding glass doors that lead to a private balcony.

American Song Deck Plan


Eagle Society Cruise

More than 200 years ago, Lewis and Clark followed the Columbia and Snake Rivers on their pioneering journey into the West. This 11-day cruise retraces the route traveled, aboard the  Queen of the West and American Pride, as well as the brand new American Song. Eagle Society members will enjoy stops in fascinating locations including the two-tiered Multnomah Falls, Mount St. Helens, and the Columbia River Gorge.  

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Reserve Cruise

Lewis & Clark Cruise

Follow the route of Lewis and Clark as they set out on their unforgettable pioneering journey into the West, over 200 years ago. Stop at Fort Clatsop, walk the grounds where the expeditionary team camped, and view artifacts from the expedition. On board, our riverlorian Todd Weber brings this region to life with tales of the patriots, fur traders, Native Americans, and explorers who helped shape the history of our country. 

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Reserve Cruise

Food & Wine Cruise

The Pacific Northwest is known for its delicious seafood and delectable wines. Savor exquisite, regionally inspired cuisine and work one-on-one with our onboard expert to find the perfect complementary local wine.
Visit amazing natural landmarks to better understand the unique topography of the region and how its diversity contributes to the wine varietals.

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