Mississippi River Cruise Highlights

A Mississippi River cruise offers a great way for passengers to see a lot of the United States. The majestic Mississippi River winds its way through a lot of the country's most beloved historical areas. River cruises, especially along the Mississippi, are excellent for passengers who prefer not to take an ocean-going cruise. The ships used on a river cruise are smaller, allowing for better interaction among passengers. A sense of rest and quiet is offered in favor of numerous activities and live shows onboard. Upper Mississippi cruises covering western Illinois and Eastern Iowa typically last 2 to 3 days, while longer cruises traveling from New Orleans to Chicago take 6 to 7 days on average.

New Orleans, Louisiana

New Orleans is truly a city that's experienced, not merely visited. A little bit of something for everyone is offered, from the magical atmosphere of the French Quarter to the elegant Garden District. If you enjoy seeing old homes, New Orleans will definitely impress you. Numerous homes going back to colonial times still stand.

Downtown New Orleans has several museums, including the Louisiana Childrens' Museum, the Contemporary Arts Center, the National D-Day Museum, and the Ogden Museum of Southern Art. Adjacent to the French Quarter is a Harrah's casino that's beautifully decorated. Some of the best shopping is found in several small stores along Magazine Street. A cemetary tour is a great way to pass time, and you might want to stop for a drink at The Morgue, a bar named for the building's original purpose.

St. Louis, Missouri

One of St. Louis' most remarkable sights is the Gateway Arch that greets visitors arriving by way of the Mississippi. A mall area with reflecting pools sits in front of the arch, making an unforgettable photo opportunity. The Eads Bridge that spans the Mississippi has impressive-looking latticework. Yet another one of the city's architectural wonders is Cathedral Basilica of St. Louis. This Catholic cathedral has one of the largest mosaic collections in the world.

St. Louis is a great place for museum lovers of all ages. The City Museum is often likened to a huge indoor playground. The Contemporary Art Museum is located in one of the trendier areas of town. The Museum of Westward Expansion is located underneath the Gateway Arch. The Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum has one of the largest collections of classic art around.

Dubuque, Iowa

Dubuque is Iowa's oldest city, and enjoys an Irish and German heritage. Several historic churches built during peak immigration periods have served as spiritual homes for the immigrants and their descendants. St. Luke's Methodist Church is built in a Romanesque Revival and has Tiffany stained glass windows. St. Mary Catholic Church features Bavarian-style stained glass in its windows.

Other interesting sights include the National Mississippi River Museum and Aquarium; Dubuque Arboretum and Botanical Gardens, featuring numerous iris and rose species; and the Ham House Museum, housed in a restored mansion. The Crystal Lake Cave is a natural limestone cavern worth seeing. Within easy driving distance is the site in Dyersville where "Field of Dreams" was filmed.

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