Back to Blog Main

American Cruise Lines offers over 50 itineraries visiting 35 states. If you have never cruised with us before, it might seem overwhelming to know where to begin. For first time cruisers, we recommend our 9-day Columbia & Snake Rivers cruise, 8-day Historic Mississippi River cruise, 8-day Maine Coast & Harbors cruise, or our 8-day Historic South & Golden Isles cruise, depending on the region you would like to explore. Not only are these our most popular itineraries, but they are short with varied excursions. Each is the perfect way to “whet your appetite” and to discover all that American Cruise Lines has to offer.

Columbia & Snake Rivers Cruise

If you want to explore the beautiful landscapes of the Pacific Northwest, this itinerary, from Portland, OR to Clarkston, WA, encapsulates everything wonderful about the region.

On this cruise, you can immerse yourself in the history of Lewis and Clark. Their journey is brought to life by our onboard historian, as well as by visiting many locations that these brave explorers traversed on their expansion into the West, including their encampment site, Fort Clatsop.

The scenery on this cruise is breathtaking, ranging from desert plains to mountain forests. Some of the stunning landscapes you will see include Multnomah Falls, an impressive 611-foot-tall cascading waterfall; Columbia River Gorge, a spectacular river canyon cutting through the Cascade Mountain Range; and Mount St. Helens, famous for its eruption in 1980. Wildlife is also abundant here with great blue heron, big horn sheep, black-tailed deer, Canadian geese, coyotes, eagles, and osprey often making an appearance along your journey.

All our Columbia & Snake Rivers cruises include a hotel stay and complimentary excursions at every port. In 2024, this cruise is available on our modern American Riverboats, American Jazz, American Harmony, and American Song, as well as on our classic paddlewheelers, American Pride and American West.

Historic Mississippi River Cruise

If you’ve always wanted to explore the legendary Mississippi River, this is a great cruise option round-trip from New Orleans, LA. Arrive in the French Quarter of New Orleans for a hotel stay and explore the city, before boarding your ship to begin your journey.

Wander the grand estates of Oak Alley, Houmas House, and Rosedown. Be led by our historian through the hallowed grounds of Vicksburg National Military Park, which commemorates the campaign, siege, and defense of Vicksburg in 1863. Discover the diverse natural beauty and rich ecological systems of America’s largest and most complex wetland. Cruise through the open waters of the Atchafalaya Basin as native guides discuss the abundant plant and wildlife indigenous to the area.

Enjoy the music born of the river, including jazz, blues, and country, performed by local musicians who board the ship for an evening of entertainment. Taste regionally inspired cuisine, including Cajun and Creole, masterfully prepared by our onboard chefs, or on a culinary excursion along the way.

Complimentary excursions are available at every port on our Historic Mississippi River cruises which are available aboard our new American Riverboats American Serenade, American Symphony, and American Melody, as well as our traditional paddlewheeler, American Heritage.

Maine Coast & Harbors Cruise

Discover the coastal treasures of Maine on this amazing journey and immerse yourself in the sights, sounds, and tastes of New England. On this round-trip cruise from Portland, begin with a calm afternoon on the sun deck looking for whales and enjoying the natural beauty that surrounds you. Explore the magnificent Acadia National Park in Bar Harbor, stopping at the summit of Cadillac Mountain, the first land in the U.S. touched by the morning sun. Bask in the warm refreshing sea breezes of Camden as you watch beautiful tall ships sail into the harbor.

While in Rockland, be treated to an authentic New England Lobsterbake along the shoreline. Discover the charming community of Boothbay Harbor, home to one of the most distinguished botanical gardens in the country. Visit the nationally acclaimed Maine Maritime Museum, which offers a variety of exhibits on Maine's nautical history.

Our Maine Coast & Harbors itinerary offers a Pre-Cruise Package in Portland. Arrive the day before your cruise and enjoy Maine’s largest city-by-the-sea at your leisure. Take time to visit one of Portland’s many museums and art galleries or peruse the specialty boutiques in the city’s celebrated Old Port.

These cruises are available aboard the brand new American Eagle and American Glory, as well American Independence.

Historic South & Golden Isles Cruise

On this itinerary from Charleston, SC to Amelia Island, FL delight in the smooth waters and southern charm of the Historic South. The shores of the Intracoastal Waterway are home to some of the most scenic landscapes and beautiful historic cities in America.

Start your journey in Charleston, lined with cobblestone streets and grand estates and where the first shots of the Civil War were heard. Take an enchanting horse-drawn carriage ride in Lowcountry Beaufort before heading to Hilton Head for a dolphin discovery cruise.

Admire Savannah’s historic districts showcasing 19th-century wealth and opulence. In Jekyll Island, visit “Millionaire’s Village,” a National Historic Landmark with 240-acres of extravagant homes and winter cottages built over 100 years ago. On your final stop at Amelia Island, take a river cruise and walking tour through the Victorian seaport of Fernandina Beach.

After an amazing day of discovery, relax on your fully furnished private balcony and admire the stunning views of remote islands that stretch out before you.

Historic South & Golden Isles cruises are available on the brand new American Liberty and American Eagle, as well as aboard American Independence and American Star.

No matter which of these itineraries you choose, you will be treated to gracious hospitality, the best accommodations in the industry, and well-crafted onshore and onboard programs to bring each destination to life. Start exploring America today with these or any of our other 50+ itineraries. Call a Cruise Specialist today at 800-460-4518 to learn more.