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Eiffel Tower and the Seine River

Seine River & Paris Cruises

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Cruise the 777-km Seine River flowing through the cultural heart of Paris and on towards the daunting historic cliffs of Normandy. Visit Mont Saint-Michel, the D-Day beaches, Malmaison & Martainville Châteaux, and the most quaint ports of call like Giverny, Les Andelys, Honfleur, Duclair and Jumièges. The 158-passenger MS Renoir was refurbished in 2011 and features dance floors, a bar & dining room, & various other social areas. Aboard the MS Amalegro, you'll enjoy well-appointed staterooms and four exquisitely decorated decks plus free bicycle rentals to explore the small towns along the way. The Seine River gives you access to highlights like Monet's garden, the impressive Notre Dame Cathedral, and the picturesque Seine Valley. Contact one of our Seine River cruise experts today to start planning your trip to France!

10 Best Seine Small Ship River Cruises for  2021

Seine River Cruises
Seine River Cruises

Top Riverboats Cruising the Seine River for  2021

Ship NameMax PassengersFromSummary
MS Amalegro148$3099Launched in 2007, the MS Amalegro is part of the newest, state-of-the-art fleet of river cruise vessels in Europe.
MS Amalyra148$3499Launched in 2008, the MS Amalyra is part of the newest, state-of-the-art fleet of river cruise vessels in Europe.
MS Renoir105$1460MS Renoir was built in 1999 and refurbished in 2018. Her renovations made her an ideal vessel for sailing the rivers and waterways of France, …
MS Seine Princess138$1612The MS Seine Princess is a comfortable and friendly ship that sails on the Seine River. Designed to accommodate 138 passengers in 67 cabins, the ship …
MS Botticelli151$558Immerse yourself in the beauty of the Seine Valley on board the warm atmosphere of the MS Botticelli. Built in 2004, the MS Botticelli has a capacity …

Seine River Cruise Tips & Travel Guide

Highlights of the Seine River
Just under 500 miles in length, the Seine River provides one of the best ways to see Paris and other main destinations in France...

You'll start your river excursion in metropolitan Paris. Several cruises simply board here and set right out to the other sites, while others spend up to three or four days touring. 

As the boats continue north towards Normandy, you'll be immersed in some of the most culturally and historically relevant sites of the early 20th century in France. In Giverny, see the former home of legendary painter Claude Monet, where the impressionist movement was born from his paintings of natural scenes. Or from the town Honfleur easily access the beaches of Normandy where Allied Forces won a hard-fought battle against the Nazi army on D-Day in World War II.

Chateaus are another obvious highlight of a river cruise through France. Medieval & Gothic architecture, like that of Notre Dame Cathedral in Rouen or the Château de La Roche-Guyon in Les Andelys are just a few examples of the impressive styles found throughout France. And of course, the wine from this region is second-to-none. 
Major Ports & Towns around the Seine River
  • Paris: The most iconic French city and the country's capital; home to the Eiffel Tower and heralded as the center of global fashion & style; you'll also likely stop in the suburban port of Poissy
  • Les Andelys: You can visit nearby Château de La Roche-Guyon or the decadent Martainville Château.
  • Giverny: This small town's claim to fame is the home of renowned painter Claude Monet. 
  • Honfleur: At the confluence of the English Channel and the Seine River in Normandy, this was the harrowing site of the D-Day invasion, but its scenic beauty has also inspired the likes of Claude Monet & other French painters.
  • Duclair: This town is most notable for its "Route des Abbayes," leading travelers along a trail of distinct & ancient abbeys.
  • Rouen: Known as the "City of Art & History," this port town is home to the legendary Notre Dame Cathedral and well preserved medieval and Gothic architecture.
  • Vernon splits the distance between Paris and Rouen.
Popular Seine River Cruise Destinations

Some of the most popular destinations frequently visited on a trip to Paris and Seine River cruises include:
When should I plan my Seine River cruise?
The most popular times for Seine River cruises are between April and July, during the late spring and summer months when the weather is warmest and the sun is strongest. 

We do feature cruises that start as early as March and extend through November. While the temperatures can sometimes fall between warm and cold depending on the weather, these are good times to visit if you're hoping to encounter less tourist traffic or find better deals and promotions on cruises. 

Its location in western Europe means that it has all four seasons:
  • Summer – June-August
  • Autumn – September-December
  • Winter – December-March
  • Spring – March-May
The winter months are not a bad time to visit, especially if you are hoping to ski or see France in a lustrous white coat of snow. Unfortunately, we don't offer any river cruises during this time.
Fun Facts about the Seine River
Did you know...
  • As one of the most navigable rivers in all of France, the Seine River has been important to commerce since Roman times.
  • The Seine River actually cuts Paris in half between the Left Bank and the Right Bank.
  • It's possible to see some of Paris's most popular attractions right from your boat, including the Notre Dame Cathedral, the Louvre Museum, and the trademark Eiffel Tower. 
  • A replica of the Statue of Liberty is on an island in the Seine River in Paris and it looks west towards the Statue of Liberty that keeps vigil over New York City. 
  • Paris was originally called "Lutetia" in Roman times.

Seine River Cruise FAQs

Why should I choose a river cruise?
If you're hoping to get the most out of your Parisian vacation, then a river cruise up the Seine River is one of the best ways to do this. Not only is it all-inclusive (meals, lodging, and tours) but it has the distinct advantage of serving as a comfortable floating hotel, meaning that you won't be burdened with packing and unpacking your bags in each new city. Plus, these European river cruises visit more destinations than standard land-based tours because they are able to take advantage of the evenings to do the majority of the long distance cruising.

What should I look for on a riverboat?
While the finest and most luxurious riverboats might feature a pool, spa, or fitness room, all of Adventure Life's hand-selected riverboats that cruise the Seine are specifically designed for French river cruising and host an ample dining room and sun deck, a bar, and comfortable rooms. A friendly and welcoming captain and crew will lead you through the experience as you get to know the Parisian countryside.

Are there 5-star river vessels on the Seine River?
Not yet, but there are luxurious vessels that offer a comfortable and elegant onboard. River cruises are a new development in European tourism, so the design of the river vessels is relatively standard across the board – three or four long decks with outward facing cabins, a lounge and bar, one dining area, and a sun deck. Since there aren't many other amenities or social areas, it's hard for them to achieve the five-star status that larger cruise ships earn with their pools, casinos, restaurants, etc. However, since this is developing quickly in Europe, it's likely that five-star vessels are on their way to Paris' waterways.

Should I get a room with a balcony?
Balconies are nice, to be sure, but they aren't really necessary to get the most out of a Seine River cruise. The panoramic sundeck offers a tremendous place for great views and fresh air, and balconies tend to add a hefty number to the final price tag of the cruise. Look for rooms with floor to ceiling windows or windows that open as good alternatives to the balconies. Unlike on larger ships, where balconies highlight a suite, on river cruises and smaller yachts, they can actually take space away from your cabin, which is already generally smaller than a typical cruise ship cabin. 

What is dining like?
France is known throughout the world for its culinary delights, and a Seine River cruise highlights the gourmet cuisine, prepared by talented local chefs on each of our featured river vessels.

Do river cruises ever visit destinations that aren't on the river?
Seine River cruises typically tend to visit destinations close to the river. There are several sites you might visit that are accessible by coach, which is included in your ticket price, but generally the main destinations of the Seine River are located right on the shores of the river itself.

Will my vessel have WiFi?
Most Seine Riverboats have WiFi onboard. Most, especially the newer riverboats, have free WiFi access in your room, a few riverboats charge an additional fee, and some have reception only on deck and not in the rooms. It's important to check with your Adventure Life trip planner to confirm that your Seine riverboat of choice has WiFi onboard.

What kind of power outlets are there? Will I need a converter?
European style plugs are two round prongs, so if you have the standard North American two flat prongs, then you will need to buy an adapter. However, voltage converters aren't necessary for most devices since they can handle both Europe's 220v in addition to the 110v in North America.

How can I save money on a river cruise?
Consider not saving money on a cruise by reserving a lower class cabin, since you will also probably be sacrificing comfort or space. DO let us know which cruises interest you and consult the deals page for each of your destinations.

Are Seine river cruises a good family vacation?
The Seine River offers a delightful family vacation. If you are traveling with younger children, wine cruises are best avoided, but there are plenty of other options to choose from when selecting a cruise. Consult our Family Travel page for more info.

Do Americans and Canadians need a passport and visa to travel to the Seine River?
All citizens of North America traveling to Europe need a passport that is valid for at least 6 months. In recent years, it has not been necessary to apply for a visa before traveling to Europe if you plan to stay less than three months, however, this situation may change in the future. See current European visa requirements.

How to choose a Seine River cruise

Where to Go?  
Unlike the Rhine, Danube, and Douro river cruises, which snake through multiple countries, the Seine River offers access exclusively to the top sites and destinations of northern France. Starting in metropolitan Paris, you will meander through the French countryside towards the cradle of impressionism in Honfleur and Les Andelys, and ultimately onto the hauntingly tranquil beaches of Normandy. 
How Long?
Seine River cruises are comparatively short, ranging from 5-days to just 10-days. What you want to see will determine the length of your cruise: shorter cruises tend to visit just a few cities and towns before heading back to their port of origin; the number of activities available on these cruises is obviously less as well. Longer cruises will often start in Paris and make their way all the way to the northern coasts of France, plus they offer more active opportunities to explore the region as well.

On which riverboat?
We feature just five hand-selected river vessels for our Seine River cruises: Amalegro, Amalyra, Botticelli, Renoir, and the Seine River Princess. They all reflect the modern fashion and elegance characteristic of metropolitan France, and you will find that they all offer comfortable state rooms, state-of-the-art amenities, and multiple social areas. Fine dining and a panoramic sun deck is standard. The Amalyra & Amalegro also offer bicycles that you can use free of charge to explore the small towns. Which boat you choose largely depends on which itinerary suits your interests most. Riverboats are generally over 100m in length and accommodating less than 200 people, guaranteeing an intimate atmosphere of camaraderie onboard. Central heating and air conditioning is standard, and you will find that the cabins, while not huge, do provide enough space. These boats also have an ample lounge, a restaurant & dining area, a spacious sundeck, and a reception area. Contact us if you need guidance in selecting the best boat for you.

What is there to do and see?
It's no secret that the small villages of France are renowned for their vineyards and savory wine varieties, making wine tasting a staple part of most itineraries. You will also have opportunities to hike the scenic countryside and explore the major urban centers, the legendary architectural landmarks of Paris, and the quaint village homes where artists like Monet helped give birth to the impressionist movement. Just taking in the crisp river air and the panoramic views from the deck of your river vessel is an activity of its own.

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