Ohio and Mississippi River Cruise
Enjoy an idyllic journey along the Mississippi and Ohio Rivers aboard the American Queen steamboat on a 10-day rail and river cruise adventure that combines cosmopolitan city stays and scenic rail travel with a leisurely river cruise to iconic Midwestern ports of call.
Book a 2015 rail-river cruise vacation aboard the American Queen or American Empress and receive a 2-cabin category upgrade – a savings of up to $3,800 per stateroom!
Qualifying vacations include:
• Memphis-New Orleans Rail-River Journey
• Ohio & Mississippi River Cruise
• Journey along the Upper Mississippi
• Coast Starlight & the Columbia River
• Pacific Northwest & the Columbia River
The American Spirit thrives on this 10-day rail-river cruise along the Mississippi and Ohio Rivers. Enjoy an overnight stay and sightseeing in Chicago before traveling by train through Illinois and into Missouri with the city of St. Louis your destination. Here, you will meet up with the American Queen Steamboat for your leisurely 7-night river cruise. Meander along the rivers, visiting cities steeped in Americana as you wind your way to Cincinnati, where your rail-river cruise journey comes to an end.
Midwest travelers may omit the Chicago city stay and sightseeing. Speak with a rail specialist for details.
Highlights and Inclusions
- Transportation aboard Amtrak
- 7-night river cruise aboard the American Queen
- Hotel accommodations for 2 nights
- All meals aboard the ship
- Complimentary wine and beer with dinner and complimentary cappuccino, espresso, specialty coffees, bottled water and soft drinks throughout river cruise
- Sightseeing in Chicago
- Ports of call: -Cape Girardeau
Day 1 - Arrive in Chicago
Arrive in Chicago and transfer on your own to your downtown hotel. Take the day to explore this exciting city on a hop-on/hop-off tour that takes you to all of Chicago's popular sights and attractions including Navy Pier, along the Magnificent Mile for superb shopping opportunities, Willis Tower, museums and more. Overnight Chicago.
Day 2 - Train to St. Louis
Transfer on your own to Union Station and board your Amtrak train for a 9:25 am departure bound for St. Louis. Sit back and relax as the train takes you through Illinois and into Missouri. You're scheduled to arrive in St. Louis at 3:00 pm. Transfer on your own to your hotel with your evening at leisure. Overnight St. Louis.
Day 3 - St. Louis at Leisure / Board American Queen
The better part of the day is free to explore St. Louis at leisure. This afternoon, board the American Queen. As your steamboat leaves St. Louis, gaze up at the Gateway Arch and envision the adventures that lie ahead. Tonight's Welcome Aboard dinner gets your journey off to a festive start. Overnight vessel. (D)
Day 4 - Cape Girardeau, MO
Your first port of call is Cape Girardeau. Our tour begins with the impressive Mississippi River Tales Mural, depicting Cape Girardeau's rich history and heritage, and the Missouri Wall of Fame highlighting some of Missouri's most notable citizens. Steps away, the historic downtown offers a wide variety of great shopping opportunities. The Red House Interpretive Center reveals what life on the Mississippi was like more than 200 years ago. Directly across the street is Old St. Vincent's Church with its beautiful Renaissance architecture and ornate interior. The Glenn House is a historic Queen Anne-style home with authentic period furnishings gracing its late Victorian interior. Next, we'll stop at River Campus; the home to the Earl and Margie Holland School of Visual and Performing Arts. At the Crisp Museum's Crossroads Gallery, interactive kiosks and exhibits highlight the history of southeast Missouri, while the Old Bridge Overlook and Park provide a dramatic view of the impressive Bill Emerson Memorial Bridge. The Cape River Heritage Museum uniquely showcases the region's culture and history. Overnight vessel. (B, L, D)
Day 5 - Paducah, KY
Known as the city of art, rhythm and rivers, Paducah boasts a lively Lower Town Arts District, the renowned River Heritage Museum, and more! Board a luxury motorcoach to see Paducah and all that this Kentucky town has to offer. If the fine art of quilting interests you, stop at the National Quilt Museum where you'll find championship quilts by modern day artists. Next, we'll stop at the Lower Town Shopping District, Paducah's oldest residential neighborhood. Lower Town serves as home to relocated artists from around the world as a result of the City's Artists Relocation Program. As our tour continues, we will visit a Greek Revival home that exhibits highlights of Western Kentucky's role in the War Between the States. Next, we'll stop at the Paducah Railroad Museum which displays heavy equipment and memorabilia from railroads throughout Paducah. Along the way we will observe some unforgettable portraits from Paducah's past depicting the city's rich history in more than 50 life-sized panoramic murals. Explore the Market House Square area and browse through the specialty shops and antiques. Lastly, we will visit Paducah's maritime legacy and folklore at the River Discovery Center, a Save America's Treasures project in Paducah's oldest standing structure. Overnight vessel. (B, L, D)
Day 6 - Henderson, KY
Today's port of call is Henderson, home of John James Audubon. Your first stop on today's sightseeing tour is The Depot. Inside we'll find visitors information and The Community Room, which exhibits the Kentucky tobacco industry, blues musician W.C. Handy and a working train set. Next, visit the Historic Henderson County Library, home of the Rotunda Gallery which offers rotating art exhibits, photography and fine art featuring local and regional artists. Next up: a shopping excursion along Main Street as well as the specialty shops at Third and Elm Street. Then, we will visit the John James Audubon Museum. Located in the picturesque John James Audubon State Park, the staff will provide a guided tour of the Museum, listed in the National Register of Historic Places. Guests can explore original oil and watercolor art by Audubon as well all personal memorabilia in this world-class facility. After touring the Museum, explore the scenic grounds. Audubon State Park was named one of the nation's top bird-watching locations and boasts award-winning hiking trails. Overnight vessel. (B, L, D)
Day 7 - Scenic River Cruising
Enjoy the sights and sounds of river cruising as you spend a leisurely day onboard. Overnight vessel. (B, L, D)
Day 8 - Louisville, KY
From its frontier founding at the time of the American Revolution to the heyday of steamboat transport in the early 19th-century and through the city's importance as a Union base during the Civil War, Louisville has always balanced a sense of history with an ability to reinvent itself as the city of originals.
Our first stop on today's narrated tour is 8th Street and Main. Here, we can hop off and visit the Museum of Arts & Crafts and enjoy “The Kentucky Show!” for all American Queen guests at the top of every hour. Enjoy this showcase of the fascinating Blue Grass State in a 35-minute multimedia experience. Next, stop at the Frazier International History Museum, home of the Royal Armories of the USA. Then, if beautiful glass artwork interests you, hop off at our next stop, the Glass Works, a premier Kentucky glass workshop. Remember to provide your information upon entering as guests will receive a secret gift! Terrific dining, entertainment and shopping are all in one place at the Fourth Street Live. Finally, we'll stop at the Louisville Visitor Center, which provides extensive information about the Louisville area and gives us the chance to do some last minute shopping. Overnight vessel. (B, L, D)
Day 9 - Madison, IN
Today's port of call is Madison. We begin our sightseeing tour with a visit to the Schroeder Saddletree Factory. For 94 years workers crafted tens of thousands of wooden frames for saddle makers throughout the Unites States. It was the nation's longest lasting continually-operated and family-owned saddletree company. Recognized by historians as one of America's premier industrial heritage sites, this factory has been expertly restored and beautifully showcases this vintage workplace. Then we will stop at the Broadway Fountain, one of only four remaining ornate fountains in the world. Offered to the Philadelphia Centennial Exposition by the Republic of France, this bronze fountain is a reminiscent of a time gone by.
At our next stop, enjoy a short tour of The Lanier Mansion. This Greek Revival style abode was built in 1844 and is often referred to as the “Crown Jewel of Madison's historic district”. After a stop at the Visitor's Center, guests can do some shopping at the Comfort Station. Then, visit the Thomas Family Winery to enjoy a tasting of handcrafted, traditional wines, old-world ciders made on site, and Celtic music. This family-run winery pays special attention to the time-honored craftsmanship that is necessary to develop timeless wines and products. Overnight vessel. (B, L, D)
Day 10 - Disembark in Cincinnati, OH
Disembark the American Queen this morning. If time permits, linger and learn about Cincinnati's pioneer life on a visit to a settler's cabin. Step aboard a side-wheel steamboat or visit the famous Rookwood Pottery Factory for a souvenir of the region. Overnight vessel. (B, L, D)
Rail Your Way
Add more flexibility to your rail vacation by choosing when and where to begin and end your vacation. Whether you want to go east to west, west to east, north to south, south to north, start at the beginning, travel the reverse itinerary or begin in the middle, Rail Your Way allows you to tailor make your rail vacation so you can have the experience you want.
Look for the Rail Your Way icon to identify those vacations that offer customized rail connections or joining points. Ask your rail specialist how you can have Rail Your Way!
Train and Hotel Accommodations
Hotel accommodations in Chicago are at the Hilton Palmer House (or similar). Deluxe accommodations are provided in St. Louis.
Amtrak accommodations are available in Coach class.
Accommodations onboard the America Queen range from Inside Cabins featuring single beds and bathroom with shower and Outside Staterooms with bay window or veranda from which to admire the passing scenery to suites with veranda.
+Vacations By Rail can supply connecting rail from your closest Amtrak Station.
Dates & Prices
Select from the packages below to view prices for this tour.
|2nd July 2015||$2,981||Book Now|
|30th July 2015||$2,981||Book Now|
|2nd July 2015||$3,705||Book Now|
|30th July 2015||$3,705||Book Now|
|2nd July 2015||$5,175||Book Now|
|30th July 2015||$5,175||Book Now|
|2nd July 2015||$6,330||Book Now|
|30th July 2015||$6,330||Book Now|
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Inside(H): Departs 2nd July 2015 ($2,981), 30th July 2015 ($2,981)
Outside(C): Departs 2nd July 2015 ($3,705), 30th July 2015 ($3,705)
Superior Outside(AA): Departs 2nd July 2015 ($5,175), 30th July 2015 ($5,175)
Suites with Verandah(LS): Departs 2nd July 2015 ($6,330), 30th July 2015 ($6,330)
Port taxes of $109 per person not included.
Travelers from the Midwest may exclude the Chicago city stay and sightseeing at the beginning of this vacations. Ask a rail specialist for details.
Vacations By Rail can supply connecting rail from your closest Amtrak station.