A pair of unusually lengthy voyages from American Queen Steamboat Company are going to be the year's hottest river sailing.
The new "Mighty Mississippi" cruises, as they're being called, are 3-week voyages on the 436-passenger American Queen that take in the entire expanse of the Mississippi from its beginnings in Minneapolis-Saint Paul (Minnesota) to New Orleans.
The first of the trips kicks off Aug. 14 in Red Wing, Minn. and ends Sept. 5 in New Orleans. The second trip begins Sept. 4 in New Orleans and ends Sept. 26 in Red Wing. Both trips start with a night in a hotel before passengers board the American Queen. They feature more than a dozen stops in such places as Dubuque, Iowa; Hannibal, Mo.; Alton, Ill.; Memphis, Tenn.; Natchez, Miss.; and Baton Rouge, La.
It's the first time in American Queen Steamboat's five-year history that the company has offered such a long trip. Most of the company's voyages are just a week long. Some are even shorter.
While booking data suggested potential interest among customers, he suggested the company didn't expect quite the response it got.
A British couple has booked both of the three-week sailings back-to-back, creating a six week Mississippi voyage.
American Queen Steamboat already has added another Mighty Mississippi sailing for August 2017 to meet the demand. They would have added even more if it wasn't for a need to get the vessel back to more traditional summer itineraries, too.