More Than 120 Departures Now Open to Book for 2019 and 2020 Travel

August 7, 2018
Berkeley, CA

AmaWaterways and Backroads – who, together, are leaders in the active river cruise travel segment – today announced an exciting lineup of more than 120 Danube, Douro, Rhine and Seine departures in 2019 and 2020, including nine full-ship charters and select sailings onboard AmaWaterways’ innovative new ship, AmaMagna. Marking their fourth year of partnership, the companies are also introducing select “expanded capacity” sailings, which will bring together more than 60 fellow Backroads cycling enthusiasts onboard a single ship, providing for a larger active community and more riding companions.

“We’re excited to introduce new options with Backroads, and to welcome even more active travelers onboard our ships, including the beautiful AmaMagna,” said Kristin Karst, executive vice president and co-owner of AmaWaterways. “2019 is going to be a banner year for AmaWaterways, and we’re excited to continue our valued partnership with Backroads during this very exciting time!”

After a nearly sold-out 2018 season, the two companies have their sights set on expansion in 2019 and 2020. In 2019, Backroads will offer 68 total departures perfect for couples, families and solo travelers – including bike tours along Europe’s Danube, Douro, Rhine and Seine Rivers and walking tours along the Douro River. Continuing the trend for increased capacity, 2020 will welcome 73 total departures with six full-ship departures and additional sailings on the one-of-a-kind AmaMagna. Backroads groups make up a subset of AmaWaterways guests, with the typical group size averaging around 26 guests.

The popular full-ship charter – otherwise known as the Full Ship Celebration River Cruise – will now offer two departures on the Danube and one on the Douro in 2019 (including departures for Families with Older Teens & 20s), and three on the Danube and three on the Douro in 2020. During these cruises, 100 to 150 fellow biking enthusiasts will come together on one of the largest active group tours in the world.

Every Backroads trip features the same quality experience as traditional Backroads adventures, and include four or more expert Trip Leaders on ship and on shore, dedicated and at-the-ready support vans and innovative itineraries with a choice of cycling and walking routes for all abilities. Backroads bike tours also feature custom-designed titanium bikes for all rider types—performance, touring and electric-assist—and include fully loaded GPS routes.

“For almost 40 years Backroads has been taking guests on expertly supported, highly flexible and individualized active vacations across the globe,” said Backroads Founder and President, Tom Hale. “Our active river cruises offer a one-of-a-kind experience where we take guests not only along the rivers but beyond, creating opportunities for a deeper dive into the region’s culture and history with authentic local connections and the freedom to explore at your own pace.”

Backroads will also host several departures onboard the luxurious AmaMagna. Set to debut in May 2019 and measuring nearly twice the width of a traditional European river cruise ship, it allows for added personal space in the larger staterooms and suites (355 sq. ft. and larger); more tempting dining venues, including the Al Fresco Restaurant, Jimmy’s Wine Bar Restaurant and The Chef’s Table Restaurant; and new enticing amenities, such as the expansive Zen Wellness Studio, complete with the newly expanded Wellness Program.

Travelers interested in booking 2019 or 2020 departures will enjoy the comfort and luxury of an AmaWaterways river cruise combined with Backroads’ immersive, expertly designed Biking and Walking & Hiking tours. Onboard, guests will enjoy unique signature twin-balconies in most staterooms, as well as connecting and triple occupancy staterooms that are ideal for the growing multi-generational travel group markets. Additional amenities include a daily “Sip & Sail” complimentary cocktail hour, heated sun deck pools with swim-up bar, hair and massage salons, fitness centers and complimentary Wi-Fi throughout the ships.

About Backroads
Backroads offers luxury biking, walking & hiking, multi-adventure and family vacations around the globe plus active river and ocean cruising. For nearly four decades, Backroads has set the standard for active travel with its innovative leader hiring and training program, unrivaled trip planning and support, flexible daily route options and exceptional hotels and cuisine. All Backroads trips are fully escorted by 3-4 Trip Leaders and two or more support vans while guests travel at their own pace, enjoying a perfect blend of exhilarating activities, cultural encounters, scenery, camaraderie and fun. Backroads hosts thousands of guests each year, 75% of whom are repeat guests or referrals from past guests, and operates trips on six continents and in 58 countries.

Backroads was founded in 1979 by Tom Hale and has been in business for more than 39 years. Backroads is a founding member of the Adventure Collection. For more information, please visit or call 800-462-2848 daily, 6 am - 6 pm, Pacific time.

About AmaWaterways
A family-owned company celebrating 16 years on the river, AmaWaterways offers unforgettable river cruises with 23 ships in 2019 sailing Europe’s Danube, Rhine, Moselle, Main, Rhone, Seine, Garonne, Dordogne, Dutch and Belgian Waterways and Douro Rivers, Southeast Asia’s Mekong and Africa’s Chobe River. The company is renowned for its innovative stateroom design featuring unique “twin balconies”; its wide choice of included shore excursions featuring biking and hiking options for the active traveler; and its award-winning dining—including The Chef’s Table specialty restaurant as well as complimentary fine wine, beer and soft drinks with lunch and dinner. Modern, spacious and tastefully decorated, each ship features onboard amenities such as hair and massage salons and a fitness room, and many have heated outdoor swimming pools with swim-up bars. AmaWaterways leads the river cruise industry in innovation including the 2019 launch of AmaMagna, a new dimension in luxury river cruising at twice the width of traditional river ships, plus a variety of themed sailings and brand relationships, offering group or chartered sailings geared towards active travelers and families.

With the highest-rated ships in Europe according to the third edition of Berlitz: River Cruising in Europe & the USA, AmaWaterways has received countless honors and accolades including Town & Country’s River Cruise Awards as “Best Overall,” “Best for Food,” “Best for Onboard Activities” and “Best for On-Shore Activities,” as well as 2017 AFAR and Recommend magazine Reader’s Choice Awards for “Best River Cruise Line.” For more information or to book an AmaWaterways river cruise, contact your preferred travel professional, visit or call 800-626-0126.