Tuesday, July 9, 2024

American Cruise Lines Hudson River

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New Casual Back Porch

American Cruise Lines – Hudson River

One new addition the Back Porch Café serves casual meals wraps, hot dogs, burgers and the like from 4:30 7:30. Its popular with folks who dont want to fuss with a big meal in the dining room.

Overall, food onboard is very good, bordering on excellent, surpassing the Big Ship cuisine in quality and freshness. Chefs provision at each port and utilize local or regional ingredients as much as possible showing their work to best effect, as dishes are beautifully plated.

New this time was the option to order half-portions, which made it much easier to clean my plate and not feel overstuffed.

Waiters and waitresses are young, but diligent and pleasant, with great memories. By the end of the trip, one young man, Desmond, knew exactly how I liked my eggs: dry scrambled, lots of onions, side of breakfast potatoes and ketchup.

A Few Things About Me

For the record, Im a road-trip travel writer happy to do my cruising on blacktop and pavement, thank you very much.

But, as a former sailor, Im as much at home on the water as I am on back-roads and highways, particularly if said home is the semi-small and newly built American Cruise Lines 175-passenger, AmericanConstitution.

Theres something transcendent about cruising NY States Hudson River for a week: particularly in late autumn when the Palisades and Catskill Mountains burst into color.

The Small Ship Difference

As I wrote in 2014, small ships are vastly different than those large floating cities that advertise Broadway shows, water slides, and zip-lines.

A few months prior to departure, Id received boarding passes, luggage tags and a small, 20 page brochure that included maps, phone numbers, information about towns wed be visiting, and shore excursions.

Emblazoned on almost each page was an 800 number to call with any questions or special requests. It seemed so tidy, to the point, and low-key almost too easy.

It was that easy.

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Leaving New York City

The Captain takes it slowly theres no need to rush. And so, the 120-mile trip from Manhattan to Hudson that would take 2 1/2 hours by car took us twelve. We docked by 1:30am.

According to our on board historian, Dale Blanshan, in Catskill and Hudson NY, we had pulled up to the little island where Henry Hudsons Half Moon anchored in 1609.

Much of the Hudson is wild without much evidence of habitation, said Dale. So, it was easy to imagine how Hudson, and 200 years later, Thomas Cole, the Father of the Hudson River School of Art, would have marveled at this landscape. Two hundred years on, were still in awe.

Shoving Off And Ports Of Call

Cruise the Hudson River

At 1:30PM, AmericanConstitution slipped from the dock, and we were silently on our way.

The day was bright and sunny. Though a bit chilly, these were perfect conditions for a spectacular sail down the East River, around the Battery, and up the Hudson River.

There is nothing that compares to seeing New York City from the water: girders under the Manhattan and Brooklyn Bridges the mirror-like Freedom Tower piercing the sky new Hudson Yards with funky new art/stairs installation, The Vessel, and more.

We were afforded a preview of the under-construction 30 Hudson Yards, featuring a walkway supported by.air. Protruding 65 feet from the office building, 1,000 feet above ground, this Observation Deck, called Edge, will open to the public in 2020.

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Explore The Us With American Cruise Lines

This article may contain referral links. Read our DISCLOSURE

American Cruise Lines is sponsoring this look at small ship cruising in the U.S.

When you think of river cruising, do you picture sailing down a European scenic river stopping at charming towns with history to explore? Did you know that you can do that here in the good old USA?

The Captain In His/her Element

At some point when at dock, members of the Eagle Society are invited up to the bridge to meet the Captain for an intimate tour of his or her domain.

In our case, it was the truly professional and humble Captain Scheiferstein who explained the highly advanced radar, depth finder, and GPS.

The wheel is actually a set of knobs like a video game console. Although it appears the ship can steer itself, I was relieved to see such a capable human being at the controls.

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Big Cities And Charming Small Towns

If youre a fan of American literature and history, youre going to enjoy many of the activities and attractions available at various ports of call during your Hudson River fall foliage cruise.

Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum

For starters, you can retrace the footsteps of one of Americas beloved writers, Washington Irving, in Sleepy Hollow. Proceed to discover Hyde Park, the birthplace of President Franklin D. Roosevelt. Tour the family home where he was born and stop by the Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum to learn about the great triumphs and tribulations of FDR and his wife, Eleanor.

You can also experience the longstanding traditions at the United States Military Academy in West Point. Step on the same hallowed grounds that the likes of General George Patton, President Dwight B. Eisenhower and astronaut Buzz Aldrin once walked on. Meanwhile, up in Albany, New Yorks state capital, pay a visit to the State Capitol where you can take a free tour of one of the most stunning buildings in the state.

Los Tacos, New York

Queue up at Los Tacos, the taqueria that many New Yorkers agree as one of the best in the city and then explore the Highline, a former train track turned elevated park nearby.

See all of our Hudson River fall foliage cruises online or speak with one of our experts at 1 734-6858 if you have questions or would like help planning your next adventure.

Chic Staterooms With Balconies

Hudson River Cruises with American Cruise Lines

Guest Rooms and oh-those-balconies on AmericanConstitution are much more chic, and larger, than those on older ships. Cheerful corals and teals are certainly an improvement over the red, white and blue color schemes of yore.

Brightly colored and elegant, they are a modern take on traditional, with dresser drawers and desk large enough to accommodate the contents of two large suitcases.

Each room has a huge flat screen TV and the ultimate-in-comfort beds wrapped in starched white duvets. Large bright bathrooms feature basket-weave mosaic floors and a human-size shower.

As in any luxury hotel worth its stars, theres turn down service each night. I came back to my room after dinner to the curtains drawn, lights dimmed, sheets folded down just right, and soft music playing.

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Not Many People Know That You Can Take A Week

New Yorks Hudson River is one of our countrys most important rivers. Before European settlers came, Native Americans lived along its banks for thousands of years. Later, it played a big part in the development of New York, New England, and even the Midwest. More recently, it also was a major player in the creation of the Clean Water Act in the 1970s. The Hudson River has many stories to tell and its 315-mile length is beautiful its entire way, from its beginnings in the Adirondacks to its end New York Bay.

Nowadays, people travel by car or by plane the majority of the time, so most dont get a chance to travel by boat up and down this incredible river. If doing so sounds interesting to you, youll be happy to know that it is possible to take a cruise on this river today. American Cruise Lines offers seven-day fall foliage cruises in October that start and finish in New York City participants visit several Hudson River towns along the way. Read on to learn more.

Owner’s Suite Private Balcony

Experience complete comfort in this spacious private sanctuary where you can feel right at home. At 350 sq. ft. the Owners Suite is quite roomy and offers a full-size bathroom. Enjoy a large sitting area, a writing desk, closet, and a private balcony offering expansive views from a stunning vantage point.

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American Cruise Line Highlights

Unique Destinations American Cruise Lines are one of the few to offer a cruise experience on many of America’s rivers and waterways. River boat cruises allow guests to explore the legendary rivers that many that helped shape the birth of the United States.

Wildlife and Local Beauty A cruise on American Cruise Lines brings nature and wildlife to the forefront. The wildlife is as diverse as the rivers that you cruise on. Cruises on the Chesapeake Bay, the inland waterways of the south, the Mississippi River delta, the Hudson River and New England, the Columbia River and Alaska all boast a different variety of landscapes and wildlife that are sure to amaze adventurers young and old.

Small Ship Cruise Experience American Cruise Lines river ships accommodate a maximum of 140 guests. The small size of these ships allows the crew to provide exemplary, personalized service in an intimate, relaxed and casual atmosphere. Onboard many friendships are formed as guests and crew mingle and share their adventures.

American History and Culture Rivers were once the highways of historic America. A journey on an American Cruise Line ship allows guests to experience all of the cities and towns that were built as the country expanded and to learn about the history and culture that makes the United States what it is today.

See Fall Colors On A Hudson River Cruise

2021 &  2022 Hudson River 8

American Star

Can you believe that Alan has never seen the famous fall colors of the eastern U.S.? While Ive admired autumn foliage on the Blue Ridge Parkway, the vibrant fall scene in the Northeastern U.S. has been missing from my travel experiences. In lieu of a road trip, were thinking a cruise up the Hudson River as it winds through the Catskills to Albany, NY, would be a fun way to see the fall spectacle.

This 8-day round-trip itinerary from New York City, visits West Point Military Academy, Sleepy Hollow of Washington Irving fame, and the birthplace of Franklin D. Roosevelt. While pinning down the perfect week to see the fall leaves is difficult, cruising the Hudson River during October is sure to be a scenic viewing.

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Best Hudson River Cruise Deals

  • Included Amenities: FREE Wi-Fi & Complimentary cocktail hour each evening and Much More!
  • Flat Rate Domestic Airfare: Available On All Itineraries


  • Included Amenities: FREE Wi-Fi & Complimentary cocktail hour each evening and Much More!
  • Flat Rate Domestic Airfare: Available On All Itineraries


  • Included Amenities: FREE Wi-Fi & Complimentary cocktail hour each evening and Much More!
  • Flat Rate Domestic Airfare: Available On All Itineraries


  • Included Amenities: FREE Wi-Fi & Complimentary cocktail hour each evening and Much More!
  • Flat Rate Domestic Airfare: Available On All Itineraries


Shipboard Facilities And Amenities

MS American Star has one Grand Dining Room that offers regional and seasonal cuisine. Other options for a drink include Maindeck Lounge, Midship lounge and Chesapeake lounge.

American Star clientele consists of well-traveled Americans. The onboard atmosphere is casual and friendly. Various port visits are offered every day. Due to its smaller size, American Star can visit the smallest ports during the shore excursions. Room service is available twice a day. Internet access and Wi-Fi are complimentary. Other amenities are the free cocktails before dinner, American staff & crew, guest lecturers. American Star has a Library Lounge, putting green, fitness, sunshade, lifts .

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Lectures And Entertainment On Acls Hudson River Cruise

Dale Blanshan, our historian, provided us with the Dale-y Update, a summery of each town, at 5pm, and lectures about Hudson River artists at different points during the cruise. One of the most fascinating was his talk on Mathew Brady, The Father of Photojournalism and the first photographer to cover a war the Civil War.

Artists Crista Shatz and Lisa Fertig were also onboard to help us make Hudson River Art our own. Attempting to bring out our inner creative, they held workshops like Hudson River Multimedia Color Immersions, Fall Leaves Greeting Cards, and Sunrise on the Water.

I found the challenge of Jump Into the Hudson the most interesting. Those brave enough were instructed to duplicate 1/12th of a whole landscape painting, which was assembled into a kind of a cubist whole.

Afterwards, our masterpieces were hung throughout the ship, inventively titled by the Cruise Director, Chelsea.

Comfy With Incredible Views

American Cruise Lines – The Hudson River Cruise

Wraparound windows on the 3rd floor Chesapeake Lounge at the front of the ship provided incredible views of what was coming at us on the river. We didnt need to go outside to be awestruck by vistas.

The lounge itself is comprised of over a dozen comfy couches and other seating in pleasing pastels and updated prints. Abundant natural light and the soft color palette lit up the expansive space even on rainy days.

A second gathering spot the Sky Lounge on the 4th floor at the back of the ship was even brighter, with white wicker tables and chairs and coral/teal carpeting.

Its where our art classes were held, and where those who fancied a rear view of the passing landscape, or who wanted to read, or grab a hot dog or hamburger from the Back Porch Café right outside, congregated.

Several smaller common rooms throughout the ship offer more chill spots for get-togethers. These, too, were nicely designed.

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River And Coastal Us Itineraries

While American Cruise Lines eco-friendly fleet of modern riverboats and authentic paddlewheelers ply the waters of famous American rivers, the All-American company also cruises coastal areas of the U.S. on five small cruise ships. And all of the ships offer single cabins with no single supplementa boon to solo travelers. In fact, boomer cruisers will find a range of choices depending on their budget and experience preferences.

Retired Teachers Attorneys And Other Professionals

American Cruise Lines seems to draw lots of retired teachers and professionals from California, Midwest, and Texas. Most guests, even in their late 70s and 80s, are still avid travelers despite some physical decline.

A couple had recently been in Dubai. Bette, from Long Island, thought nothing of going to Africa two years in a row. These are not rocking-chair retirees.

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Evening Shows And Lectures

For those who were still awake or interested at 8:15 each night, the Chesapeake Lounge turned into a café/theater/music venue with popcorn, ice-cream sodas, and beer and wine.

The first evenings entertainment, a musical selection that perfectly exemplified this all-American cruise line, was called Anthem- a musical medley of Patriotic songs by Carolyn Bensen.

Subsequent nights featured The Bobby Stillwell Project two Boomer-music rock and rollers on guitar and electric piano who were raucous, funny, and talented comedian Joe Bronzi with true NY humor the jazzy Perry Beekman Duo Kenny Hendricks on piano.

My favorite musical group, however, was featured on the last night of my cruise : The Victory Belles. Their 1940s songs included, of course, the Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy of Company B, and a tribute to each branch of the US Military.

As the three women belted out themes from the Army, Navy, etc. they asked vets to stand and be recognized. Witnessing more than a dozen older gentlemen rise from their seats was incredibly moving.

Explore Early American History On A Chesapeake Bay Cruise

American Cruise Lines Constitution: Going Solo On the Hudson River Fall ...

On a Chesapeake Bay cruise, history is the star of the showand crab. On a 7-day-round-trip cruise from Baltimore, MD, explore early American history as your ship stops in Yorktown and Williamsburg, Oxfordone of Americas oldest towns. Then continue to Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum in Talbot, and Annapolis for a visit to the Naval Academy, a National Historic Landmark. About those crabsat quaint Tangier youll visit the Blue Crab Capital of the World. Of course crabs are sure to be part of the regional menu served onboard ship.

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Idea Could Boost Business

Several merchants pointed out that residents’ concerns about vehicle traffic on Piermont’s narrow roads were ameliorated because cruise visitors would be walking around the village.

Tucker and several speakers had requested that the seven-day cruises stop in Piermont mid-week, when foot traffic in the tiny riverfront village is low, rather than on bustling fall weekends.

The cruise line would have provided shuttle or trolley transportation for passenger trips into the village’s eclectic downtown, and buses would be used to take people on longer day trips.

The end of the pier is about a mile from Flywheel Park, village eateries and shops.

Dussault said their passengers enjoy historic tours during Hudson River excursions, including the U.S. Military Academy at West Point and Olana State Historic Site, the home of famed landscape artist Frederic Church.

Dussault expected day trips from Piermont would include Sleepy Hollow, which he had said was popular with history buffs.

The Piermont pier has its own historic significance. The village, known as “Last Stop USA,” was the embarkation point for troops heading to fight in Europe during World War II.

Recalling the Hudson’s history and a “working river” and Piermont’s connection to the river, Barbara Grace of Piermont expressed support. “I like the idea myself that people get on the river, have the experience and learn to love and care for the river.”

Fall Is The Best Season To Visit

The thinning of the tourist crowds, the cooler temperatures and the foliage are just a few of the reasons why fall is the best season to visit and explore the Hudson River. Families have settled back into their homes as school begins another session and as days get shorter, the temperature drops to a more comfortable level, making it ideal for outdoor activities.

Bear Mountain State Park

Most importantly, the dense forests along the river covered with oak, maple and sycamore trees are strikingly beautiful as they change colors from luscious green to bright orange, yellow and red.

Insider Tip: If time allows, take one of the challenging hikes at Bear Mountain State Park to experience the natural beauty of the fall foliage up close and personal.

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