For travelers who are fitness-minded, having certain amenities available on a river cruise ship might be important. Several river cruise companies feature all or some combination of a fitness center, a pool or bikes onboard their ships.
During shore excursions, there is usually an opportunity to do some walking, which is also a form of exercise. However, some travelers seek more vigorous fitness activities. For them, it’s helpful to know ahead of time whether or not your river cruise company offers any of these amenities.
Fitness Centers, Pools & Bikes: Companies That Have All or Some of These Onboard
- AmaWaterways has a fitness center and some bicycles on each ship to be used during shore excursions.
- In Europe each ship has either a whirlpool or a heated swimming pool. And in Africa, Myanmar, Vietnam and Cambodia, all ships have a pool on the Sun Deck.
- American Cruise Lines features a state-of-the-art fitness center on all seven ships in its fleet.
- None of the ships have bicycles or a pool.
American Queen Steamboat Company
- There is a small, bathing pool and fitness center on the American Queen. However, the American Empress has neither on the ship.
- There are no bicycles on the American Queen or the American Empress.
- A-ROSA features a fitness center, bicycles and a pool or whirlpool on all of its ships.
- There is a fitness center on all Avalon Waterways’ ships. However, none of its ships have either bicycles or a pool – only a whirlpool on European vessels.
- Emerald Cruises features a fitness center and a pool with a retractable roof on all of its ships. There are also bicycles available for shore excursions.
- There is a fitness center available on Grand Circle’s ships. Neither a pool or bicycles are featured, though.
- Scenic Cruises has a fitness center and a pool on all its ships.
- The company also supplies some custom-made bikes, which have an electric motor. Bikes still require pedaling, so it’s definitely a chance to get some exercise.
- All ships in Tauck’s fleet offer a fitness center and some have a pool onboard. Bicycles are also available for shore excursions.
- Uniworld has fitness centers on its ships and some also have pools.
- The Super ships have indoor pools, state-of-the-art gyms, hot tubs, Yoga and Nordic walking sticks for guests to use.
- All ships have bikes – good ones too. See Ralph Grizzle’s ride along the banks of the Rhône last year using Uniworld’s bikes.
- The Super Ships suites offer guests one complimentary in-room massage.
- Viking River Cruises is actually one of the few river cruise companies that does not have fitness equipment on most of its ships. Some of the ships offer them.
- There are only 2 ships that feature a swimming pool onboard, and both sail on the Douro River – Viking Hemming and Viking Torgil.
- Bicycles are not available on Viking River Cruises’ ships.
Fitness Centers, Pools & Bikes: Companies That Do Not Have Any of These Onboard
- CroisiEurope is the only company that does not offer any fitness-related amenities. There is not a fitness center or pool on any of its ships. None of the vessels, except for its barges, carry bicycles either.
Fitness Center/Pool/Bikes – Additional Value
What is the value of each of these amenities? If you’re someone who is fitness-minded, having at least one of these items available on the ship is probably valuable to you. During some of the shore excursions, you may do your share of walking and even at an incline sometimes. However, these additional options can help you keep up an established fitness routine.
Whether or not your ship has a pool or fitness center will not change the monetary value of your trip. When you’re onshore, you would probably not be going to a gym or using a swimming pool.
However, with regard to bicycles, if your ships does not offer them and you choose to rent one during your shore excursion, the average cost is $4 to $5 per hour per bicycle. If you like bike riding and plan to do it while onshore, having bicycles available on on your ship could eliminate the extra cost of having to rent one.
See other all-inclusive river cruise articles in this series:
- Airport Transfer Fees
- Free WiFi
- Laundry Services or Facilities
- Port Charges
- Prepaid Gratuities
- Private Butler Service
- Shore Excursions
Fill Wood says
Fill Wood • 22 minutes ago
I just discovered River Cruise Advisor and love this site. As a compulsive travel planner, who likes to research every detail imaginable from as many sources as possible, I welcome the info that you provide. My wife and I have taken over 30 ocean cruises, but are new to river cruising. I particularly appreciate your info regarding exercise opportunities available on the various lines, especially the availability of bicycles as my wife and I also have taken numerous bicycle trips and are looking forward to being able to cycle across Europe without carrying panniers and un-packing/packing in new hotels every night, as we have in the past. I’d appreciate any info you can provide comparing the quality of the bicycles offered on the various cruise lies, especially Ama and Uniworld. I don’t expect the bicycles to be as good as our own custom touring bicycles or even high-end road racing bicycles, but hopefully they should be relatively new, decently maintained, and with some gearing to allow one to visit hilltop castles and not just pedal on bike paths along the river banks and in town centers.
Ralph Grizzle says
Thank you. Scroll down to the bottom of this page and you’ll see Uniworld’s bikes. They were quite good. https://www.rivercruiseadvisor.com/live-voyage-reports/s-s-catherine-christening/
The comments on Uniworld are incorrect, they have bicycles on all ships in Europe except the Douro.
How come you never include Vantage in these comparisons?
Ralph Grizzle says
We don’t cover everyone. No reason. There’s not a lot of people requesting Vantage. We only get one other person requesting for Vantage to be included in our coverage.
please include Vantage
Irrawaddy River /cruise had a small gym…I never used it…but the massages were SO good!!!