About Grand Heartland Cruise

Enjoy an epic 15-day/14-night journey on our Grand Heartland cruise. This cruise on the Mississippi River travels from the northern reaches in St. Paul, MN all the way down to the basin in New Orleans, LA. Experience the American heartland the way early pioneers did and gain insight into this magnificent waterway. The Grand Heartland cruise offers guests a front row view to 10 states in one of the most comfortable paddlewheel cruise ships on the Mississippi.

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Cruise Itinerary

Day
Ports of Call
1
St. Paul, MN
2
Red Wing, MN
3
La Crosse, WI
4
Dubuque, IA
5
Davenport, IA
6
Day of River Cruising
7
Hannibal, MO
8
St. Louis, MO
9
Day of River Cruising
10
Memphis, TN
11
Day of River Cruising
12
Vicksburg, MS
13
Natchez, MS
14
Baton Rouge, LA
15
New Orleans, LA

Grand Heartland Cruise

Journey the length of the Mississippi River on this extraordinary two week cruise.

Ports of Call

  • St. Paul, MN
  • Red Wing, MN
  • La Crosse, WI
  • Dubuque, IA
  • Davenport, IA
  • Hannibal, MO
  • St. Louis, MO
  • Memphis, TN
  • Vicksburg, MS
  • Natchez, MS
  • Baton Rouge, LA
  • New Orleans, LA

Day by Day


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Day  1
St. Paul, MN

St. Paul is a thrilling place to begin your adventure on the Mississippi River. History buffs will enjoy a walking tour of Summit Avenue, which showcases gorgeous historic mansions built in the late 1800’s. St. Paul’s enchanting art galleries, world class museums, and entertaining stage performances will capture your imagination.

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Day  2
Red Wing, MN

Nestled among the scenic bluffs of the upper Mississippi River, Red Wing's beauty has inspired artisans, craftspeople and artists for over 150 years. Red Wing delivers a diverse blend of arts, entertainment and activities for your pleasure. Enjoy a show at the historic Sheldon Performing Arts Theatre or observe the beauty of nature at one of Red Wing’s 38 parks.

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Bald Eagle Viewing Cruise - Complimentary Excursion

See three 1,500 pound bald eagle nests during an informative and mesmerizing tour. Captain Rusty will guide you and other guests along a route showcasing 14 bald eagle nests within a five-mile radius of the dock. Few experiences are as engaging and captivating as this shore excursion.

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Red Wing Trolley Tour

Red Wing is home to a unique downtown area that features a wide variety of shops, including art galleries, antique stores and one-of-a kind boutiques. Historically, Red Wing is known for its shoes, pottery and linseed oil, but today it has become a leading producer of robotic components. This one-hour trolley tour will take you back in time to show you Red Wing’s historic roots.

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Red Wing Pottery Tour

Tour the Red Wing Pottery workshop and see the production of their stoneware. You will have the opportunity to meet a potter and the owner of this third-generation family business. The tour will give you a new appreciation for the craftsmanship required to produce such beautiful stoneware.

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Day  3
La Crosse, WI

Step into 19th century America in La Crosse, located on the banks of three captivating rivers. La Crosse is home to Riverside Park, where you’ll enjoy beautiful gardens, an outdoor performance center, and inspiring sculptures.

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Hixon House - Complimentary Excursion

Take a step back in time at the Hixon House, a beautiful Victorian home. Built in 1859 by lumber baron Gideon Hixon, this house features beautiful woodwork and an elegant interior design. Gideon’s wife, Ellen, decorated the Hixon House in an aesthetic fashion, and it has been preserved much as it was since its last remodeling and redecoration in 1900. The Hixon House also features its original furnishings, making it unusual among historic houses.

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Eco-Tour

Spend an afternoon on this signature backwater cruise, specifically designed for nature lovers and bird watchers. Explore a variety of wetland habitats and discover the wide array of wildlife living within the "Upper Miss" wildlife refuge. Highlights include up-close views of bald eagle nests, beaver lodges, sunning turtles, great blue herons, egrets, red fox, and playful river otters.

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Day  4
Dubuque, IA

A “Masterpiece on the Mississippi,” Dubuque is among the oldest settlements west of the Mississippi River. Take a ride on the Fenelon Place Elevator, the world’s shortest and steepest scenic railway or try your luck in one of Dubuque's state-of-the-art casinos. View colorful Victorian mansions, stroll through the bustling downtown area, or visit the national Mississippi River Museum and Aquarium.

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Historic City Tour - Complimentary Excursion

Step back in time and experience the elegance of Victorian era Dubuque during a tour through the town’s many historic attractions. Learn about the architecture, families and events that made 19th century Dubuque such a unique treasure. Your guide will lead you through Dubuque's beautiful historic sites, including the Mathias Ham House and The Old Jail Museum.

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National Mississippi River Museum and Aquarium

Take an entertaining and informative journey along the mighty Mississippi at the National Mississippi River Museum and Aquarium. On this guided tour, you will discover the lives of the pioneers, explorers and artists who lived along the Mississippi River and get close to nature as you make your way through six large aquariums. The museum’s interactive exhibits will give you an inside look into the Mississippi’s past, present and future.

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Day  5
Davenport, IA

Voted one of the Most Livable Small Cities in America, Davenport is often described as a lively, active city with a hometown feel. This city features the Legacy of John Deere, the largest agricultural exhibit in the world. Music enthusiasts will enjoy Davenport’s many festivals, including the Mississippi Valley Blues Festival, The Mississippi Valley Fair, and the Bix Beiderbecke Memorial Jazz Festival.

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John Deere Pavilion - Complimentary Excursion

Visit the newly renovated John Deere Pavilion and Store. The John Deere Pavilion shares the story of the company’s ongoing contributions to agricultural development through exhibits and equipment displays. Discover antique tractors, giant combines, and interactive displays on this self-guided tour.

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John Hauberg Indian Museum

Enjoy a guided tour of the Hauberg Indian Museum. Located in the Black Hawk State Historic Site, this museum interprets the story of the Sauk and Meskwaki Indians who once called it home. During the tour, view full-size replicas of Sauk winter and summer homes, dioramas with life-size figures of the Sauk and Meskwaki Indians and traditional artifacts, including authentic trade goods and jewelry.

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Day  6
Day of River Cruising

Enjoy the day relaxing on the upper deck, or your private balcony as we cruise from Davenport, IA to Hannibal, MO.

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Day  7
Hannibal, MO

Hannibal, “America’s Hometown,” is a place where you can rediscover adventures from Mark Twain’s era. In this charming Missouri town, you can run your hand along Aunt Polly’s fence, explore Injun Joe’s Cave, and get reacquainted with one of the world’s most beloved authors. The downtown area is a thriving haven for artisans filled with wonderful shops unique to Hannibal.

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Mark Twain Boyhood Home and Museum - Complimentary Excursion

​As you arrive in Hannibal, the boyhood home of famous author Mark Twain, you’ll relive the author’s experiences that heavily influenced his writings. You’ll visit the actual home that Mark Twain grew up in, which is surrounded by the legendary whitewashed fence of Tom Sawyer.  The vivid stories told by Mark Twain come to life at this interactive museum as you explore the homes and grounds of Becky Thatcher and Huck Finn. You’ll visit the Interpretive Center, home to 15 original Normal Rockwell paintings, the Becky Hatcher House, the Huck Finn Home, and the Tom and Huck Statue of Cardiff Hill.

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Narrated Trolley Tour - Complimentary Excursion

Relive the adventures of Mark Twain’s time in Hannibal during a historic trolley tour. Your experienced guide will share the history of Hannibal and take you to places of historical significance, including the Rockcliffe Mansion, an amazing 13,500 square foot American castle built to overlook the mighty Mississippi River. This tour will highlight many of the exciting places which inspired Mark Twain’s famous tales.

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Day  8
St. Louis, MO

St. Louis is often referred to as the “Gateway to the West”. Take in the Gateway Arch Riverfront, highlighted by the Gateway Arch, the largest manmade monument in the U.S. Visit the Art Museum, Science Center, Anheuser-Busch Brewery, and the Missouri History Museum. End your day by relaxing at the Missouri Botanical Garden, one of the world’s top public gardens.

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City Tour of St. Louis - Complimentary Excursion

Join others on this narrated tour to Downtown St. Louis, the riverfront, City garden, and the historic neighborhoods of Soulard and Lafayette Square. Enjoy an additional driving tour of St. Louis' 1,371 acre Forest Park, known as a natural oasis in an urban environment. Visit Anheuser Busch Brewery for a stables-only tour (if available) to see the historic stables built in 1885 and the world-famous Clydesdale horses.

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The Arch Experience

At 630 feet tall, The Gateway Arch is our nation’s tallest man-made monument. Take a tram ride to the top of this majestic arch for a bird’s-eye view of downtown St. Louis and the Mississippi River. After the tram ride, visit the Museum of Westward Expansion and discover the lives of the explorers, cowboys, and Native Americans who helped forge our nation.

 

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Day  9
Day of River Cruising

Grab a good book and curl up in one of our spacious lounges, or grab a pair of binoculars and enjoy the fall foliage as we make our way down the Mississippi River.

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Day  10
Memphis, TN

Excitement resonates as you visit America’s third-largest inland port, famous for blues, barbeque, and Elvis Presley's Graceland. The Memphis-Arkansas Memorial Bridge creates a dramatic backdrop for it all. As you disembark, immerse yourself in the sights and sounds of one of the South's most popular cities.

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Memphis City Tour - Complimentary Excursion

The city of Memphis has a deep-rooted history which spans many of the most important aspects of American culture.  Your comprehensive tour starts onboard with an authentic Memphis BBQ before your private tour guide meets you at the ship and your journey through Memphis begins.  We will visit iconic sites such as the National Civil Rights Museum, St. Judes Children’s Research Hospital, the Peabody Hotel – featuring the legendary Peabody ducks, and world famous Sun Studios – the birth place of rock n’ roll.  As you explore the city, the musical notes of up-and-coming artists on Beale Street emanate throughout.

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Deluxe Graceland Tour

No trip to Memphis is complete without a trip to the home of the “King of Rock N’ Roll,” Elvis Presley. Before venturing just outside of the city to Graceland, our knowledgeable guide takes you on a brief tour of the historic downtown and riverfront area. American Cruise Lines offers the most in-depth experience available at Graceland, allowing you to explore fascinating exhibits such as Elvis’ museum, estate grounds, the jungle and trophy rooms, his grave site, and much more. 

*This is a Signature Shore Tour. Please call (800) 460-4518 for more information. 



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Day  11
Day of River Cruising

Spend a beautiful day with friends in one of the ship's beautiful lounges as we explore the river from Memphis to Vicksburg.

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Day  12
Vicksburg, MS

U.S. history is alive in Vicksburg. This “Queen City of the Bluff” offers plenty of opportunities to take a step back in time. Civil war battlefields, century old churches, cotton fields, and restored train depots are just a few of the many intriguing landmarks that await your visit. Marvel in the beautiful antebellum-style homes and watch Vicksburg’s history come to life at the riverfront murals.

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Battle of Vicksburg Tour - Complimentary Excursion

As the paddlewheel laps gently against the water and the stars illuminate the night sky, our onboard Civil War historian gives a captivating lecture detailing all you are about to witness the next day at Vicksburg National Military Park.  After a hearty southern-inspired breakfast, you will be greeted by our private tour guide who will stay with you throughout the day to answer questions and provide additional knowledge.  Upon arrival, at the park Rangers who are well versed in Civil War history guide you on a customized tour that’s specific to the interests of the group.   Your guides will take you through the restored ironclad gunboat, U.S.S Cairo, the battlefield where the Siege of Vicksburg took place, and the over 1,300 monuments dedicated to the brave souls who lost their lives


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Day  13
Natchez, MS

Overlooking the Mississippi River, Natchez was first established as a French fort site in 1716, later becoming part of the United States as the first capital of Mississippi in 1817. Perched 200 feet above the Mississippi River with 30-mile views both north and south, the bluff of Natchez is a place to marvel in the grandeur of the river. Natchez offers true southern hospitality with the attractions of a great small city.

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Historic District Tour - Complimentary Excursion

On our leisurely Natchez city tour, our expert local guide will build upon the lecture you received the night prior by our onboard historian and provide you with an insider’s perspective into the city’s rich history and the preserved influences of the Native American, European, and African cultures. We’ll be greeted at the landmark Longwood Plantation home, famously known for remaining incomplete to this day, as the Union workers left the structure unfinished to go fight in the Civil War. After the private tour, we’ll gather in the ship’s lounge for cocktails as the chefs prepare for a special Southern-inspired dinner.

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Natchez Shuttle - Complimentary Excursion

Take a complimentary shuttle into the charming city of Natchez, MS. Explore this beautiful city’s shopping, museums, and other offerings at your own leisure before departing this popular destination.

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Frogmore Plantation

Our onboard experts tell many stories about southern life on a plantation; today you’ll see first-hand what life was really like. Our insightful local guide will accompany you from the ship to the cotton gin, and will be your escort as you explore the 1,800 acre cotton plantation. In intimate groups the plantation owners Lynette and Buddy Tanner will delve into plantation life– from the housing, music, and relationships between the owners and workers. You’ll have the opportunity to pick real cotton directly from the cotton fields, participate in a live gospel performance, and witness the progress in cotton technology from Eli Whitney’s original gin to their modern 900 bales-per-day computerized plantation. 

   
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Day  14
Baton Rouge, LA

Experience the wonder of Baton Rouge, Louisiana's capitol. Known as the Red Stick, Baton Rouge is home to legendary Louisiana Cajun cuisine, fascinating plantation tours, and a variety of attractions. There is everything you would expect to find in a state capital, but with a down-home flavor that is part of its seductive charm. Enjoy a grand tour of one of the most historic and unforgettable cities in the South.

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Historic Baton Rouge Tour - Complimentary Excursion

The vibrant history of Louisiana is evident throughout the state’s capital. After breakfast you will be greeted at the ship by Philippa Blair and her visitor center representatives as they welcome you to Baton Rouge with vibrant Mardi Gras beads. Your first stop is the Louisiana Old State Capitol where you will experience a one-of-a-kind interactive film, made with the help of Disney, which will bring you face-to-face with the ghost of the castle, Sarah Morgan. Afterwards, Baton Rouge native, Ira Bobin, will serve as our tour guide and will bring you to the Louisiana State Museum, a completely interactive museum with three floors of displays detailing each different region of Louisiana.

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Cajun Heritage & Rural Life Museum

The Plantation Quarters showcase the kitchen, slave cabins, and grist mill of a typical 19th century working plantation. After a tour of the Plantation Quarters, discover the life of early Louisiana settlers during a tour through a replica 19th century town. Highlights include the pioneers’ cabin, shotgun house and dogtrot house.

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Day  15
New Orleans, LA

Welcome to New Orleans, commonly referred to as the Birthplace of Jazz. There is something for everyone with this city’s history, culture and arts prevalent around every corner. The open air artist colony proudly displays local artist’s works on the iron fence in Jackson Square, while the city’s 45 museums carefully preserve the city’s rich history. Consider staying an extra day or night to enjoy this lively city.

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New Orleans Museum of Art

The New Orleans Museum of Art is the city’s oldest fine arts institution, with an impressive permanent collection of 40,000 artifacts. Enjoy a guided tour of this stunning museum, which is recognized for its extraordinary French and American art, photography, and African and Japanese works. After the tour, be sure to visit the picturesque Sydney and Walda Besthoff Sculpture Garden, one of the premier sculpture installations in the United States. The Sculpture Garden is situated on a beautifully landscaped site among meandering footpaths, reflecting lagoons, 200-year-old live oaks and pedestrian bridges.

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New Orleans City Tour

New Orleans is a city full of history, intrigue, and colorful characters. After a Cajun inspired breakfast, we’ll begin your journey through the “Big Easy” with a private tour guide, who will give you a local’s look into the area’s most famous attractions. We’ll explore the most popular areas including the French Quarter, the colorful garden district, and the famous stately mansions which still remain in period form. We’ll allow plenty of time for you to enjoy the local flavors, like chicory coffee, sweet beignets, and famous New Orleans jazz music.

 

Queen of the Mississippi

Queen of the Mississippi delivers an experience, unlike any other riverboat. Queen of the Mississippi offers passengers modern amenities and comforts including large staterooms with private balconies, hotel-style bathrooms, complimentary room service, WiFi, and more. Built in 2015, the Queen of the Mississippi offers an authentic paddlewheeler experience with all the comforts of home.


Click a Category

Owner's Suite

Deckplan

At a generous 445 sq. ft., the Owner’s Suites of Queen of the Mississippi offer the finest accommodations with unsurpassed views of the Mississippi River. With a spacious seating area and full size bathrooms, each suite is a private sanctuary where you can unwind after a day of exploration in the tasteful comfort of your surroundings. A feature of these suites, large sliding glass door lead out to a private balcony where you can enjoy the ever-changing scenery.

AAM (Private Balcony)

Deckplan

Located on the top deck, these spacious staterooms feature scenic views of the passing landscape. At 328 sq. ft., you will enjoy all of the modern comforts and relaxing style that is expected of a premium hotel. These staterooms also offer full-size bathrooms and a walk-out private balcony where the grandness of the Mississippi can be appreciated.

AAC (Private Balcony)

Deckplan

Our AAC staterooms are conveniently located on the fourth deck and offer all of the comforts of a fine hotel. Complete with a private balcony and floor to ceiling sliding glass doors, these staterooms provide spectacular panoramic views of the Mississippi River and the surrounding landscape. At 304 sq. ft., these staterooms also offer a sitting area, desk, and hotel size bathrooms.

AAL (Private Balcony)

Deckplan

AAL staterooms can be found on the second and third deck of the Queen of the Mississippi. Enjoy a luxurious 304 sq. ft. of living space that is equipped with plush seating, full-sized bathrooms, and a private balcony with large sliding glass doors that offer great views of the Mississippi scenery. These staterooms are the epitome of comfort and relaxation.

AAR (Private Balcony)

Deckplan

AAR staterooms can be found on the second deck of the Queen of the Mississippi. Enjoy a luxurious 304 sq. ft. of living space that is equipped with full-sized bathrooms, and a large private balcony with opening picture window. These staterooms are the ideal retreat for relaxation.

A

Deckplan

These 290 sq ft staterooms offer exceptional comfort and a relaxing living area. Featuring a large opening picture window, these staterooms are equipped with modern amenities, hotel-sized bathrooms, closet space, and a writing desk.

Single (Private Balcony)

Deckplan

Perfect for the solo traveler, our Single staterooms offer all of the amenities you expect from a fine hotel. At 230 sq. ft., these staterooms have spacious bathrooms and large sliding glass doors that lead to a private balcony.

Single

Deckplan

A comfortable getaway, our Single suites offer individuals a spacious room with convenient amenities. At 203 sq. ft., these staterooms have interior entrances and large viewing windows where the sights of the Mississippi can be enjoyed.

Queen of the Mississippi Deck Plan

Deck

America

The America is American Cruise Lines’ eighth ship and its second brand-new vessel to launch in 2016. America is the finest Mississippi paddlewheeler ever built, introducing features never before seen on a Mississippi riverboat. The America embodies a casual ambiance and relaxed atmosphere, while providing panoramic views of the passing scenery. With only 185 guests, fellow passengers will quickly become new friends.


Click a Category

Owner's Suite (Private Balcony)

Deckplan

Each Owner’s Suite on America offers the finest accommodations on the Mississippi River with unsurpassed views of the passing scenery. A spectacular 445 sq. ft. of space is your private sanctuary to spread out and make yourself at home. Floor to ceiling sliding glass doors lead to an expansive private balcony offering private panoramic views throughout the room. Every modern amenity is at your fingertips, along with a spacious seating area and full size bathroom.

AAM (Private Balcony)

Deckplan

Located on the top deck, these spacious staterooms feature commanding views of the passing Mississippi landscape. At 328 sq. ft., there is plenty of room to enjoy the tasteful comfort of your surroundings. These staterooms have all the comforts of a fine hotel and feature floor to ceiling sliding glass doors with a private balcony to offer panoramic views of the Mississippi from every angle.

AAC (Private Balcony)

Deckplan

AAC staterooms are conveniently located on the fourth deck and offer all of the comforts of a fine hotel. Complete with a private balcony and floor to ceiling sliding glass doors, these staterooms provide spectacular panoramic views of the Mississippi River and the surrounding landscape. At 304 sq. ft., these staterooms also offer a sitting area, desk, and hotel size bathrooms.

AAL (Private Balcony)

Deckplan

AAL staterooms can be found on the second and third deck of America. Enjoy a luxurious 304 sq. ft. of living space that is equipped with plush seating, full-sized bathrooms, and a private balcony with large sliding glass doors that offer great views of the Mississippi scenery. These staterooms are the epitome of comfort and relaxation.

AAR (Private Balcony)

Deckplan

AAR staterooms can be found on the second deck of the America. Enjoy a luxurious 304 sq. ft. of living space that is equipped with hotel-sized bathrooms, and a private balcony with large opening picture window. These staterooms also feature a large sitting area, writing desk and represent complete comfort and relaxation.

A

Deckplan

These 290 sq. ft. staterooms offer exceptional comfort and a relaxing living area. Featuring a large opening picture window, these staterooms are equipped with modern amenities, hotel-sized bathrooms, closet space, and a writing desk.

Single (Private Balcony)

Deckplan

Perfect for the solo traveler, our Single staterooms offer all of the amenities you expect from a fine hotel. At 230 sq. ft., these staterooms have spacious bathrooms and large sliding glass doors that lead to a private balcony.

Single

Deckplan

A comfortable getaway, our Single suites offer individuals a spacious room with convenient amenities. At 203 sq. ft., these staterooms have interior entrances and large opening viewing windows where the sights of the Mississippi can be enjoyed.

America Deck Plan

Deck

Cruise Date

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Ship

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* Prices displayed are per person based on double occupancy.

Complimentary Pre-Cruise Hotel

Pre-Cruise Hotel Package

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Call 800.460.4518 for additional details.

The American Cruise Lines Difference

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