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Crescent City Connection Bridge over the Mississippi River during sunset. New Orleans, Louisiana, USA
13 November, 20234 minute read

Why is river cruising great for solo travellers?

Our solo holidays offer travellers the chance to meet like-minded people and explore wonderful destinations as part of a friendly group. The motto for us is that you may be choosing to travel solo, but you're not travelling alone.

Many of our customers enjoy the freedom of being able to pick and choose when and where they want to go on holiday, as well as being able to make new friends. And because our solo itineraries also have time at leisure, too, there are also opportunities to enjoy exploring by yourself or relaxing with a good book.

One holiday type that’s great for solo or single travellers, particularly first timers, is river cruising. Not only is river cruising a sociable experience, but it also makes it incredibly easy to explore a whole host of towns and cities. As our senior product manager Rob says: “river cruising is the perfect introduction to solo travel.”

In this guide, we’ll cover:

  • The benefits of river cruises for solos

  • Ship sizes and passenger numbers to suit solo travellers

  • Options for solo travellers at mealtimes

  • Popular cruises for first-time solo travellers

We’ll also take a look at some of the other holiday types that are similar in style to river cruising, or which include a cruise alongside a tour or stay. In short, there are lots of amazing ways to explore when you’re travelling solo.

Why is river cruising suited to solo travellers?

There are so many reasons, but first and foremost is that river cruising is really informal and a sociable experience. There are lots of other solo travellers on board, and the more relaxed rules on open seating at dining means that you can choose with who you’d like to sit with. Because river cruises are typically on smaller ships, it’s really easy to get to know everyone on board.

It's also a safe way to travel – for those who may be worried about taking a trip on their own, as with all Titan holidays, you’ll be in the company of an experienced tour manager. They’re there to make sure every detail runs smoothly, and to ensure you have a fantastic time.

You can explore all the destinations easily, too – river cruises usually moor right into the heart of towns and cities. There are no long disembarkation times – hop off and pretty much immediately start discovering all the amazing history, culture and landscapes surrounding you.

Which ship sizes best suit solo travellers?

It depends on your personal preference – some like a bustling, lively feel on board, while others would prefer a quieter, more intimate cruise experience.

Nile cruises tend to take around 100-150 passengers, so there’s a great atmosphere on board that isn’t too overwhelming. If that seems too much, perhaps look to our dahabiya cruise, where you’ll be on a traditional Egyptian sailing boat that welcomes just 14 passengers at a time.  

Do solo travellers have to sit alone for meals?

No – most river cruise ships will have a policy of open seating for meals. This means that you can choose who you sit with at any mealtime. Our experienced tour managers are also very good at making sure our holidays are inclusive experiences and that no-one feels isolated from the rest of the group.

While you might not be able to have a table to yourself on all ships (particularly smaller ones with limited dining space), if you do like to eat on your own, you can often choose to do your own thing in port and head off for a coffee or spot of lunch by yourself.

Friends Sharing a Laugh at Dinner

Will solo travellers get to have some alone time too?

Absolutely, you can join in as many or as few activities and excursions as you wish. It’s your holiday after all. There is always somewhere quiet to relax and read a book. If your ship offers it, perhaps consider booking a higher-grade cabin with a veranda or French balcony – a great place to spend an afternoon with the window open and lovely fresh air coming in while you enjoy the passing scenery.

Woman admiring ocean from wooden deck

What are Titan’s most popular river cruises for solo travellers?

Nile cruises are very popular with solo travellers – we even have a selection of dedicated solo departure dates of Magic of the Nile and Cairo, Alexandria and a Nile Cruise. On these dates, everyone on the cruise will be travelling on their own, so it’s a great way to meet other like-minded people.

Pandaw River boat, Kerals

Are there any other options available?

If you’re still not sure if river cruising is for you, try a short one that’s part of a longer tour itinerary. In Zimbabwe, we’ll spend three wonderfully laid-back nights on a boutique houseboat on Lake Kariba, spending our days admiring the wild landscapes and heading out on boat rides and walking safaris. And in Kerala, we’ll take to the beautiful backwaters on a traditional houseboat for a taster of the go-slow lifestyle.

Queen Farida boat on the Nile, Egypt

If you’re considering a solo river cruise, browse our website or speak to one of our travel advisors for more information.

Image of blog author Rob Stapley

Rob has been with Titan for 15 years, and over that time he has experienced a variety of roles in the product team, covering Canada, Northern Europe and River Cruising, while he is currently responsible for Titan’s Ocean Cruise itineraries.

Rob | About the author

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Why choose a Titan Travel tour or cruise?

Our award-winning collection of holidays covers all seven continents, with carefully planned itineraries ranging from rail journeys and river cruises, to small-group adventures and trips exclusively for solo travellers.

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From excursions to hotels, entry tickets and dining packages, we include more than any other tour.

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Be guided by some of the most passionate and knowledgeable tour managers in the world, on hand to help every step of the way.

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Feel free to amend or extend your travel plans, up until final payment, and enjoy free time on your tour with us too.