ABOVE: Uniworld's River Countess in Budapest.
A decade ago, several river-cruise lines offered cruises of the Venetian Lagoon and Po River Valley from Venice. The number of ships in the Lagoon dwindled over the years, but lately there has been a resurgence. In 2012, two river-cruise companies--France's CroisiEurope and Germany's Nikko Tours--have regularly-scheduled departures from Venice's San Basilio cruise terminal. In 2013, they'll be joined by a top-tier American company, the Uniworld Boutique River Cruise Collection, which is moving River Countess from the Rhine, Main, and Danube to Venice.
The 134-passenger River Countess is being remodeled prior to the move. River Countess--which has 63 stateroom and four suites--offers such features as free Wi-Fi, French balconies on upper-deck staterooms (see deck plan below), and a fitness center for passengers who feel the need for activity when they aren't sightseeing on shore.
Uniworld is offering its Venice and Po cruises as part of a 13-night "Splendors of Italy" tour that includes several days in Florence in Rome. Guests can choose a 7-night "cruise only" option, which starts and ends in Venice. The Venice cruise portion of the itinerary includes local sightseeing tours in Venice and the Lagoon town of Chioggia, along with excursions to Padua, Revenna, and Verona.
Related article at Venice for Visitors:
BELOW: A current ship profile and deck plan of Uniworld's River Countess.
Images: Uniworld River Cruises, Inc.