Abercrombie & Kent

Abercrombie and Kent river cruise review

In 1962, Geoffrey Kent, along with his parents, founded Abercrombie & Kent, which only offered simple safaris at the time in Kenya where they lived. In the following years the company grew and Jorie Ford Butler joined the company as Geoffrey’s business partner, where they expanded the brand worldwide. Today, Abercrombie & Kent runs 52 offices around the world and Geoffrey Kent still has a close hand in deciding the places they go and the guides that lead guests.

Ships: None of their own, but they charter a variety of vessels, including river ships for their European itineraries, expedition ships and canal barges.

How Many Passengers:  River ships accommodate about 168 guests, canal barges can hold up to 12 guests while their charted expedition ships can have up to 199 passengers.

Personality: Boutique-style and very intimate; the staff to guest ratio is 1.3 to 1. The onboard atmosphere is laid back and luxurious, with great attention to detail. Since most voyages are on very small vessels, guests quickly get to know each other.

Fellow Passengers: The average age of passengers is 35 to 65, which skews slightly younger than most small-ship and river cruise lines. Kids are welcome, but must be 10 years or older. You won’t find a lot of families, though, because there aren’t really any amenities or activities that are ideal for the younger crowd.  

Cabins: The river cruise ships are Amadeus Waterways vessels that Abercrombie & Kent charter, and cabins and suites are spacious (some of the largest on European river ships) and include walk-out or French balconies. Inside, they feature natural and muted tones with plenty of natural light coming. 

Dining: Breakfast and lunch are both buffets that have a variety of options to suit every taste.  Dinner is a multi-course affair where you dine on the master chef’s specialties made with local, fresh ingredients. Every cruise also features a Chef’s Highlights dining event with an exclusive tasting menu.

Amenities: Ship-wide wifi, sun deck, fitness room, massage facilities, and a shuffleboard court. There are also bicycles that guests can use for exploring in port.

Best For: Middle aged to older couples, those that enjoy personal attention and being pampered, and travelers who want a laid-back, relaxed atmosphere.

Included Alcohol: Beer and wine are included with lunch and dinner, both aboard and during group shore excursions

Gratuities: Included

Where They Go:  Seine, Saône, Rhône, Danube, Rhine, Main, Loire, Mekong, Yangtze, and Nile Rivers, as well as a number of European canals, including Burgundy and Upper Loire.  Expedition ships head to the Arctic, Antarctica, Japan and the Northwest Passage.