With its Victorian décor, splashing red paddle wheel, and wedding cake exterior, American Pride conjures up images of another time, when lazy afternoons were spent floating on the river. The 150-passenger vessel, built in 2012 by American Cruise Lines, entered service as Queen of the Mississippi on the Mississippi River system in the nation’s heartland but was renamed when it moved in early 2016 to the Columbia and Snake rivers in Oregon and Washington.
What We Love
Large Staterooms: The smallest accommodations are 203 square feet, and most have balconies. Those that don’t have windows that actually open.
Extra Perks: Select shore excursions, Wi-Fi, a pre-dinner cocktail hour, and wine and beer with lunch and dinner are among the bonuses included in the cruise fare.
Totally Laid Back: The comfortable atmosphere, from small lounges stocked with maps and navigational charts to the white rocking chairs on the outside decks, is made for relaxing.
Best Known For
That Bright Red Paddle Wheel: It really works, but there are engines to help propel the ship to 12 mph, faster than many riverboats. Guests get a close-up view of the paddle wheel from the aptly named Paddlewheel Lounge.
The Calliope: Who isn’t charmed by the lively music from this traditional instrument?
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Who It's Best For
Older Travelers: It’s a decidedly mature crowd on this ship, attracted by the small size of the vessel, open dining, the all- American crew, the daily lecture, and the fact that the elevator goes to every deck.
Fearful Fliers: Many passengers get to the ship by car, train, or a short flight.
Don't Say We Didn't Warn You
It Ain’t Cheap: These voyages run in the mid-$4,000 range up to more than $7,000 for a top suite.
Expect To Be Early to Bed: This is not the vessel for those looking for late-night revelry. Most retire after the evening entertainment.
Theresa Norton Masek is a Chicago-based contributor to ShermansCruise and a longtime cruise writer.
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American Pride at a Glance
- Line: American Cruise Lines
- Number of Passengers: 150
- Ship Size: Small
- Launch Date: 2012