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River Baroness Cruise Review

A roundtrip voyage from Paris to Normandy with Uniworld Boutique River Cruises.

RIVER BARONESS in Rouen, France

ABOVE: Uniworld's River Baroness is moored a few blocks from Rouen Cathedral, next to a promenade on the banks of the Seine.

River cruising has grown enormously in popularity over the last decade, for two reasons:

  • It's something new for cruisers to try after they've explored Europe's coastline on oceangoing ships. (With river cruising, travelers can reach cities and towns that are far from the sea.)

  • It's an appealing alternative to motorcoach tours and train or car trips, since there's no need to pack and unpack each day or check into a different hotel every night.

Uniworld logoIn past years, we've reviewed two river ships--Viking's Maribelle and Peter Deilmann's Casanova--but we'd never cruised with Uniworld, which has become a leader in luxury river cruising with awards from Condé Nast Traveler, Travel + Leisure, Cruise International, Cruise Critic, and other media.

We corrected this omission in late September, 2012, with a voyage on Uniworld's River Baroness, which offers seven-night "Paris & Normandy" cruises from mid-March until late October. (We chose the "Cruise Only" option; most passengers book a 10-day/nine-night "Cruise/Tour" that includes two nights and a day of touring in Paris before the ship's departure.)

River Baroness in RouenWhy Paris & Normandy, rather than one of Uniworld's cruises on the Rhine, Danube, or other European rivers? For us, the choice was easy: Our Paris for Visitors site attracts nearly 1.4 million page views per year, so a cruise that began and ended in Paris was likely to interest many of our readers. It was also convenient, since--like our Paris for Visitors readers--we could easily combine the River Baroness cruise with a Parisian vacation.

In this 10-page illustrated review, we'll describe our week on River Baroness and what you can expect from a Uniworld cruise on the River Seine.

We also invite you to browse our 33-page River Baroness day-by-day photo diary, which has nearly 200 captioned images of the ship, ports of call, and shore excursions.

2017 update

Uniworld now has two vessels on the Seine: River Baroness and a new ship, the Joie de Vivre. Each ship has a unique itinerary that is similar (but not identical) to the one described in this review. For details, see Uniworld's Web site.

Next page: River Baroness: the ship

Uniworld River Baroness cruise review:
River Baroness: the ship
Cruise itinerary
Cabins and suites
Dining, lounges
Other amenities
Shore excursions
Officers and crew
Is Uniworld right for you?
Web links

Day-by-day cruise photo diary:
River Baroness photos (33 pages)

Also see:
Paris for Visitors
Paris River Cruise Ports (with directions)
Uniworld River Countess cruise review (Venice and the Venetian Lagoon)