In 2002, AmaWaterways owners Rudi Steiner, Kristin Karst and Jimmy Murphy began work to make their vision of AmaWaterways a reality. Since then,  Ama has become an award-winning river cruise line with a fleet of 21 ships in 2017. AmaWaterways has remained family-owned and operated, and the owners continue to have a hands-on approach to management. You never know when one of the three owners will fly over from California with a surprise visit onboard. They keep a very close eye on all of the many facets of owning and successfully running a river cruise company.

Ships:  24

How Many Passengers:  From 28 – 196 passengers. Zambezi Queen in Africa, has only 28 guests while the “double-wide” AmaMagna can accommodate 196 passengers. 

Personality: Stylish, modern, home-like. Very comfortable feeling. Crew and officers welcome guests as though they were welcoming them to their own home.

Fellow Passengers:  While AmaWaterways is heavily marketed in the United States, you’ll meet others guests mostly from Australia, Canada and the U.K. Age range is generally over 55 to 80-ish, however it’s slowly getting younger each year. Bringing children under eight is not encouraged. However, AmaWaterways has aligned with Adventures by Disney for several family-oriented special river cruises each year.

Cabins: Range from 160 to 300 square feet. Many cabins feature French balconies or what the AmaWaterways calls “Twin Balconies” — a combo of French-style and step-out balconies. This saves on interior cabin space.

Alternative Dining: The Chef’s Table restaurant features a tasting menu and an alfresco terrace. These ships are members of La Chaine des Rotisseurs, a prestigious culinary organization.

Amenities: Their river ships are equipped with a fitness room, salon with massage services, and heated swimming pools – some with swim-up bars. Bikes are kept onboard for complimentary use.

Best For:  Older couples, honeymooners, those who seek an active river cruise experience. English-speaking guests.

Included Alcohol: Wine and beer with lunch and dinner, sparkling wine with breakfast.

Gratuities: Additional

Where They Go:  Europe, Vietnam & Cambodia, Africa, Myanmar