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6 Boutique Cruises To Book For 2022

Treat yourself with a bijou boutique cruise and set sail in some of the world’s most stunning locations.


It doesn’t get much more romantic than a Nile River cruise on La Flaneuse du Nil. Built to resemble the traditional dahabiehs from the days of the pharaohs, this boutique boat cruise offers just seven cabins. Also, as 2022 marks the 100th anniversary of the opening of Tutankhamun’s tomb and the long-awaited launch of the Grand Egyptian Museum in Cairo, there’s no better time to explore Egypt. Book a nine-night Egypt trip with five nights on La Flaneuse du Nil cruise via Original Travel; prices from $6,600.


Tiger Blue is a traditional 112-foot teak phinsi yacht, designed for cruising around the tropical isles of Indonesia’s West Papua province. With just five cabins, Tiger Blue has three itineraries throughout the year, which include Raja Ampat; the Banda Islands archipelago; and Komodo National Park, home of the famed Komodo dragons, the largest lizard on earth. Book a seven-night cruise on Tiger Blue in Raja Ampat Indonesia via Reef & Rainforest; prices from $5,600.


Abercrombie & Kent has a portfolio of 25 barge cruises all across Europe, and on many of these vessels, couples or solo travelers may book a cabin, just like you would on a larger cruise. Sleeping 12 and run by European Waterways, Panache is the boat for Francophiles. Highlights of Panache’s Canal de le Marne au Rhin trip include visits to Strasbourg; the Petit France district; and the famed Route des Vins d’Alsace. Book a seven-night Panache Canal de le Marne au Rhin cruise via Abercrombie & Kent; prices from $5,950 per person.


Aqua Nera is the gorgeous new vessel by Aqua Expeditions. With 20 high-design suites, Aqua Nera is purpose built to explore the lush rainforest of the Peruvian Amazon in three-, four- or seven-night exploration trips. Itineraries focus on the natural surroundings and include shore excursions, yet with world-class dining by Pedro Miguel Schiaffino; a top-deck plunge pool; and even a gym, there’s plenty to enjoy onboard too. Book a three-night Aqua Nera cruise via Aqua Expeditions; prices from $4,125 per person.


The custom-built Scenic Aura, by small-ship specialists Scenic, has 22 cabins. On the epic 16-day Mystical Irrawaddy river cruise, guests sail the Irrawaddy River in South East Asia from Yangon, Myanmar’s largest city, all the way to Mandalay, the old royal capital of the country, with plenty of time to explore along the way. Book the 16-night Mystical Irrawaddy cruise via Scenic; prices start from $6,555 per person.


M/C Petrel is a motor yacht with nine spacious cabins, which are actually some of the largest of any ship in the Galapagos (plus they all come with private balconies—a necessity for wildlife spotting). The boat also features indoor and outdoor bars; a full-length sundeck with hot tub; and a range of excursions. Book a 12-night Ecuador trip with 4 nights aboard the M/C Petrel via Audley Travel; prices from $11,130 per person.