Mississippi River Cruises
The American Queen Steamboat portrays life on the Mississippi enjoying it's music, food, southern heartland culture and fascinating history ...
St Paul to New Orleans (24 Nights/ 25 Days)
Full Length Mississippi Cruise
|13 Aug - 05 Sep 2017|
Full Length Mississippi Voyage (24 Nights / 25 Days)
Have you ever wondered what this country looked like to its early explorers and pioneers? Travelling on the Mississippi and its tributaries aboard the elegant American Queen, you will be transported back in time to an era of leisurely and romantic travel. Storybook American towns and vibrant, bustling cities combine with the sweeping panoramas and deep blue lakes which inspired the works of Mark Twain. Authentic America is out there just waiting to be explored and after three fabulous weeks cruising amidst the Antebellum charms and gracious style of the American Queen, you will forever be changed.
This tailor-made itinerary takes you on a magical voyage from the St Paul to New Orleans … journey down to the southern states and experience the culture, the music, the food, America’s Civil War and antebellum history along with the true hospitality of the Deep South. Music is the heart and soul of Memphis and is home to many artists such as Jerry Lee Lewis, Johnny Cash, BB King, Otis Redding and, of course, Elvis who has solidified it’s reputation as a musical Mecca – the association is close with Priscilla Presley being Godmother to the American Queen Steamboat! In New Orleans take in the ambience of the fine restaurants and cafes in the French Quarter, the Jazz Clubs in Bourbon Street and the strolling musicians in Jackson Square.
In between these magnificent cities you will find quaint American towns, traditional plantations, elegant antebellum homes, magnificent gardens and oak trees taking you back to an era of hoop skirts and cotton fields. You will experience the real soul of the Mississippi River..sit in a rocking chair on the American Queen’s Front Porch and watch it unfold before you..
Day 1 – Arrive St Paul, USA
Fly from London to St Paul, USA.
Your journey begins with a deluxe hotel stay in St. Paul. Tomorrow, you will board the American Queen.
Day 2 – Arrive Red Wing, MN
Explore St. Paul at your leisure or consider a Pre-Cruise Premium Shore Excursion with afternoon transfer to the American Queen.
Day 3 - Redwing, MN
Red Wing, Minnesota was included on National Geographic Traveler’s list of most historic places in the world. Discovered in the early 1850’s, the lands were used mostly for harvesting wheat that would be transported up the river. Later in Red Wing’s history the economy began to flourish due to the thriving pottery industry, which became a main source of income between 1877 and 1967. Today, the city offers endless opportunities to travel back in time and learn about settlers and travelers that occupied the land before today, or to admire the craftsmanship and creativity of local artisans of both the present and the past.
Day 4 - La Crosse, WI
La Crosse, named by explorer Zebulon Pike who saw a group of people playing a game with sticks that looked like a cross, is a popular destination for tourists. Filled with statues, architecture, and an exquisite view of the river, this river city is an artist’s dream. Like much of Wisconsin, La Crosse became heavily involved with the lumber industry in the mid-1800's until the decline of the forests throughout much of Wisconsin took its toll. But in the wake of the vanishing lumber era, La Crosse became a city renowned for its beer making, with around five breweries operating in La Crosse near the turn of the century. Today, make note of lingering pieces of history along the streets of the city, inside local breweries, and within the floorboards of historic homes and businesses.
Day 5 – Dubuque, IA
Dubuque is Iowa’s oldest city and is among the oldest settlements west of the Mississippi River. The first permanent settler of the area was French-Canadian fur trader Julien Dubuque who arrived in 1785. Dubuque’s location to the Mississippi and its abundant land and resources, attracted large numbers of immigrants, particularly Irish and Germans, from overcrowded cities on the east coast. Dubuque is filled with historic sites, architectural Historic Districts with well-preserved buildings and homes, history and art museums, the great Mississippi River, and a revitalized main street that invites guests with Dubuque’s claim-to-fame as an “All-American City".
Day 6 – Quad Cities (Bettendorf) IA
During the Civil War, the nearby river towns of Davenport, Iowa, Rock Island, Illinois and Moline, Illinois thoughtful planning and strong leaders helped them to flourish while other settlements began to fail. It was during this same time period that the three towns began to refer to themselves as the “Tri-Cities.” Today, despite the name “Quad Cities,” the city is comprised of five towns in total with the addition of East Moline, Illinois and Bettendorf, Iowa. Enjoy the diverse culture of this “melting-pot” city and uncover the stories of Quad Cities’ past in the many museums, boutiques, and eateries.
Day 7 – Burlington, IA
Explored in 1673 by Pere Jacques Marquette and Louis Joliet, the land that is now Des Moines County changed hands from France to Spain, back to France and finally to the United States as part of the Louisiana Purchase. After Lt. Zebulon Pike’s expedition landed at what is now Crapo Park in 1805, it was part of several territories – Louisiana, Indiana, Missouri, and Michigan. In 1834, residents named the land “Burlington” after trader John Gray’s Vermont hometown. When Iowa was named a territory in 1838, Burlington remained the capital. Today, visitors enjoy the sights and attractions of the town as the hills and valleys, prairies, and the Mississippi River create the perfect scenic backdrop.
Day 8 – Hannibal, MO
Hannibal, Missouri has a rich history, diverse industrial economy, and truly remarkable arts. The city was founded in 1819 by Moses D. Bates and became a popular stop along the river for many steamboats traveling up the Mississippi. Hannibal offers more parks per citizens than most towns in the Midwest and was included in the famous “50 Miles of Art.” Today, the most popular draw of this quirky town is Hannibal’s very own, Samuel Langhorne Clemens, recognized world-wide as Mark Twain. Many of the popular characters featured in Twain’s novels were based on people Sam had known while growing up in Hannibal. Many of the characters and influences of this American icon are weaved into the streets, shops, restaurants, and museums of Hannibal waiting to be uncovered.
Day 9 – Alton, IL
Enjoy a complimentary city tour of nearby St. Louis, Missouri. Famously referred to as the “Gateway City,” St. Louis is known for its diverse neighborhoods and the different cultures and traditions each one brings forth. The iconic city was founded in 1764 by French explorers who settled on the east side of the Mississippi, claiming the land as their fur trading post. In 1803, the city’s name began to spread as the beginning point for the famous Louis and Clark Expedition. The city is typically associated with its 630-foot stainless steel monument, The Gateway Arch, which stands proud on the banks of the Mississippi River to symbolize the westward expansion of the United States.
Day 10 – Grafton, IL
Grafton is the oldest city in Jersey County and its history is openly depicted in every rustic home, hometown hospitality, and architectural structure lining the streets of the town. Enjoy the quaint town as you discover the museums highlighting the history of the city and the river, explore the unique shops and eateries downtown, or sip on robust wines from one of the many wineries across the county.
Day 11 – Chester, IL
Known as the “Home of Popeye”, Chester, Illinois is a city rich in history and pop culture. Because creator and writer of Popeye, Elzie Crisler Segar, was born here, the famous characters starred in the show will be seen showcased frequently throughout the town. Stop at the Popeye Character Trail to view granite statues of the characters overlooking the Mississippi or check out America’s only Popeye museum and gift shop to take home a souvenir to remind you of your visit to Chester! Spend the day exploring the unique history as you walk through luxurious homes, historical buildings, and museums.
Day 12 – Cape Girardeau, MO
Nestled along the western banks of the mighty Mississippi River, the city of Cape Girardeau, Missouri is found; a community rich in history and heritage. For more than 250 years, people have been drawn to Cape Girardeau and the river on which it lies. Stroll along the riverfront, where the passion that led Mark Twain to write so eloquently about Cape Girardeau in Life on the Mississippi, the inspiration that Gen. Ulysses S. Grant used to lead with firm conviction as he took command of the Union Army on the Mississippi in historic downtown, and the warmth and hospitality that community founder Louis Lorimier extended to Lewis and Clark while on the journey of a lifetime as they set forth on their Corps of Discovery to explore the Louisiana Purchase.
Day 13 – Paducuh, KY
Paducah embraces their harmonious history between the European settlers and the Padoucca Indians native to the area. The city is located at the confluence of the Ohio and the Tennessee Rivers and because of this, it is often called the Four-Rivers Area due to the proximity of the Ohio, Cumberland, Tennessee, and Mississippi Rivers. This prime location has played a major role in Paducah’s history, as transportation was easily accessible – the economy was strong and travelers were frequent.
Day 14 – Paducuh, KY
Enjoy the Lowertown Arts District (one of the stops on the Hop-on-Hop-Off Tour) - Paducah’s oldest neighborhood is famous for the award-winning Artist Relocation Program that prompted its colorful revitalization which continues today with the expansion of the Paducah School of Art & Design campus. The Arts District is populated with working artists, students and artists-in-residence who add to the City’s vibrant artistic landscape
Day 15 – New Madrid, MO
New Madrid was founded in 1776 by Spanish Governor Esteban Rodríguez Miró who welcomed Anglo-Saxon settlers but required them to become citizens of Spain and live under the guidance of his appointed impresario, Revolutionary War veteran, Colonel William Morgan of New Jersey. Some 2,000 settled in the region. In 1800, Spain traded the territory to France in the Third Treaty of San Ildefonso, who promptly sold it to the United States in the Louisiana Purchase. The city is remembered as being the nearby location for the Mississippi River military engagement, the Battle of Island Number Ten, during the Civil War. The city is famous for being the site of a series of over 1,000 earthquakes in 1811 and 1812, caused by what is called the New Madrid Seismic Zone. Today, explore this quaint river town that will surely steal the hearts of all guests.
Day 17 – Greenville, MS
Greenville is at the very heart and soul of Mississippi Delta. Located on the banks of Lake Fergusson, Greenville is a short drive to Indianola, the birthplace of B.B. King and many other blues singers, so naturally Greenville has its fair share of Blues integrated into its culture. Many authors and writers were born or reside in the small town of Greenville; local legend says that the Greenville water grows writers. The author of the Muppets actually got started here along with a long list of other impressive, renowned writers! The town is also known for their gardening, which they were recognized for growing the largest carpet plant in the nation; and museums of which the town has one for practically everything! This beautiful town is sure to win your heart with its southern charm and
Day 18 - Vicksburg, MS
Vicksburg perfectly blends Southern culture and heritage with exciting modern-day attractions. Described as the “Key to the South” by Abraham Lincoln, this southern town carries a history unlike any other Civil War city. Vicksburg was founded in 1811 and grew as a vital river port city. It was a major component to the Civil War and carries much of the history within the town. Today, Vicksburg is a popular spot for tourists to learn about the battles of the city, taste the cuisine, visit the many museums, and pick out the perfect souvenier.
Day 19 - Natchez, MS
This charming river town was first inhabited by Natchez Indians and French explorers who shared the land. It was founded in 1716, making it the oldest city on the Mississippi. The city is known for its elegance, hospitality, and impressive preservation of history – found on every street corner throughout Natchez. Guests enjoy the unique shops, restaurants, museums, and historical homes located in Natchez, all of which contribute to Hugh Bayless’ book, “The 100 Best Towns in America.
Day 20 – St Francisville, LA
Established in 1809, St. Francisville is the oldest town in the Florida Parishes. Below where St. Francisville is located currently, was a settlement called Bayou Sara in the 1790’s. When this settlement was destroyed by flooding and fires, many of the structures and artifacts were hauled up the bluff into St. Francisville, where they are still standing. The town is referred to as “two miles long and two yards wide,” but that definitely doesn’t mean they have nothing to offer! Stop in at one of the unique shops, historical homes, beautiful churches, or breathtaking parks and you will agree with that! Spanish moss trees grow throughout the town, which creates a beautiful southern comfort to the atmosphere.
Day 21 – Baton Rouge, LA
Baton Rouge, the Capital of Louisiana, has a deep culture and rich history. Named by French explorer, Sieur D’Iberville after a reddish pole marking two separate tribal hunting grounds, Baton Rouge has transformed into a rich cultural city. Locals speak a specific version of French in their everyday language. The city is home to Louisiana’s capitol building which is the largest in the United States, as well as the Old State Capitol – a Gothic architectural monument located on the bluffs overlooking the Mighty Mississippi. Spend the day exploring all that Baton Rouge has to offer, from the museums and the architecture, to the shops and the cuisine – everyone will enjoy an exciting, busy day.
Day 22 – Nottoway, LA
Experience living history as you explore the largest remaining antebellum mansion of the deep south.
Day 23 – New Orleans, LA
Tie up in New Orleans near historic Jackson Square and bid your steamboat adieu. Free day at your leisure to relax and enjoy the delights of New Orleans with a luxury hotel stay.
Day 24 - New Orleans, LA
Morning at lesiure and later you will be transferred to New Orleans Airport for your return flight to UK.
Day 25: Arrive London, UK
Guide Prices are per person based on 2 persons sharing a cabin include:
Inside Double Cabin (Category E) Texas/Observation Deck
From £6125 per person
Outside Stateroom with Bay Window (Category D) Cabin Deck
From £9295 per person
Superior Stateroom with Private Veranda (Category A) Texas Deck
From £11465 per person