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New ships

Full list of new river cruise ships sailing in 2023

River cruise ships are arriving on the scene aplenty in 2023, with nine new ships setting sail on the waterways of the world from the Danube to the Mekong. This is the full list.

Words by Jeannine Williamson

New river cruise ships launching in 2023 will spark excitement among cruising fans with offerings ranging from brand-new lines in Europe to luxurious hotel barges.

Following on from our full list of ocean cruise ships in 2023, we’ve rounded up all the new cruise ships sailing this year.

Will you be tempted to get onboard?

Riverside Mozart deck Riverside Luxury Cruises

Riverside Luxury CruisesRiverside Mozart

Number of passengers: 150

Launch date: April

There’s going to be a big presence back on the Danube with the launch of the former Crystal Mozart, acquired by the all-new line Riverside Luxury Cruises following the luxury company’s collapse post-pandemic.

Renamed Riverside Mozart, the river ship that’s double the width of mainstream vessels has the feel of a small ocean ship with multiple bars, lounges and dining outlets yet carrying fewer passengers than ships half its size.

Set Sail

American Cruise LinesAmerican Serenade

Number of passengers: 175

Launch date: April

The Mississippi is known for traditional paddle wheelers. However, for passengers that prefer to travel in more contemporary surroundings, American Cruise Lines offers the option of modern riverboats, too.

The interior design draws inspiration from American geography and there’s an impressive four-storey glass atrium in the centre of the ship.

Set Sail
American Serenade new river cruise ships
VIVA TWO restaurant


Number of passengers: 190

Launch date: April

The new flagship of German-based VIVA Cruises features a choice of three restaurants, including a casual bistro and speciality venue Moments with live entertainment.

Offering English-speaking cruises on the Danube, itineraries include the lesser-known Danube Delta where the famous river meets the Black Sea.

Set Sail

Amadeus River CruisesAmadeus Riva

Number of passengers: 162

Launch date: May

The new generation ship for Austrian-owned Amadeus River Cruises showcases an innovative split-level sun deck. The forward section has been lowered so it can always remain open when water levels are high and the ship sails under bridges.

Other ships have to completely close upper decks in these conditions. There’s also an elegant Viennese cafe reflecting the line’s heritage.

Set Sail
Amadeus Riva new river cruise ships 2023
Amadeus Elegant

SagaAmadeus Elegant

Number of passengers: 150

Launch date: May

Meanwhile, Amadeus River Cruises’ Amadeus Elegant moves over to the Saga fleet, with onboard tweaks to cater for the tastes of UK passengers. Sailing on the Danube, Rhine and its tributaries, fully-inclusive fares include a home pick-up service.

Set Sail


Number of passengers: 8

Launch date: May

Clink a glass of Champagne and float through France in style on the ultra-luxurious new addition to Belmond’s fleet of hotel barges which is available for private charter.

Taking inspiration from Art Deco design and carrying a maximum of just eight, passengers can dine on deck and excursions include private wine-tasting tours.

Set Sail
Coquelicot new river cruises 2023
APT Mekong Serenity new river cruise ships 2023

APTMekong Serenity

Number of passengers: 88

Launch date: July

Authentic experiences aboard APT’s Asian ship include nightly entertainment in the lounge such as apsara dance performances characterised by the dancers’ graceful hand movements.

Restaurants include the Indochine showcasing a five-course tasting menu of Vietnamese specialities. On land, there will be an atmospheric excursion to watch the sunrise at Angkor Wat, the world’s largest temple complex.

Set Sail

Viking River CruisesViking Aton

Number of passengers: 82

Launch date: August

This is the second brand-new ship on the Nile for the world’s largest river cruise line. Featuring Viking’s trademark understated Scandinavian design; it includes the indoor and outdoor Aquavit Terrace for panoramic viewing and dining.

Shore tours also feature Viking’s ‘privileged access excursions to the tombs of Tutankhamun in the Valley of the Kings and Nefertari in the Valley of the Queens.

Set Sail
Viking Aton on the Nile new river cruise ships 2023
Published 11.01.23