Good news for anyone who thinks river cruise excursions only creep along at a snail’s pace. With almost every river cruise line targeting a younger age demographic, the competition for more active excursions is heating up.

Emerald Waterways will add more active excursions to their 2018 river cruise itineraries.  To stay at the top of the game, back in 2016 Emerald Waterways created EmeraldACTIVE, complimentary hiking and biking tours.  Next year, Emerald Waterways active excursions will include 17 additional tours to their EmeraldACTIVE excursion selection.

Rated on scale from one to three, three being the most strenuous bike or hike, a clear description of each tour is provided on Emerald Waterways’ website.

An example of a level three bike tour would be a four-hour, 23-mile bike tour that begins or ends in either Melk or Durnstein, Austria. The group bikes through rolling vineyards and quaint towns in the scenic Wachau Valley.  There’s a stop for an included bag lunch along the banks of the Danube before pedaling off to meet up with your ship again.  This tour is offered on many of the upper Danube river cruises.

A level one EmeraldACTIVE tour that requires only basic bicycle riding skills would be, for example, the bike tour in Belgrade, Serbia.  With a total biking distance of only 7.5 miles and at a relaxed pace, the focus is about the history of Belgrade from World War II to today.  While this is still an active tour, you can see the difference between levels one and three.

Among some of the new excursions for 2018 will be a canoe trip in Pocinho, Portugal, along the Douro river and its tributaries.  New biking tours through Vienna, Bernkastle and Hoorn allow the opportunity to get some cardio while engaging with these cities the way locals do. New hiking trips include a tour of some of the picturesque vineyard and orchards around Tournon, France and a trek to Castle Hill in Budapest. Onboard yoga classes on Portugal and France sailings will also be offered.

As a nearly all-inclusive river cruise experience, all Emerald Waterways active excursions are offered to guests at no additional charge.

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