ON THE WATER
See Oregon and Washington from the mighty waters or the Columbia aboard a yacht, paddlewheel boat, or Victorian steamer.
Columbia and Snake Rivers Journey
It took Lewis and Clark a month to canoe the dangerous stretch of Columbia between Lewiston, Idaho, and Astoria. Aboard the 31-cabin yacht-like National Geographic Sea Bird or Sea Lion, it’ll take you seven days. And instead of capsizing in rapids and bracing yourself to eat candles when your food runs out, on National Geographic and Lindblad Expeditions’ “Harvest, History, and Landscape” cruise you’ll enjoy the Columbia Valley’s finest wines, locally and organically grown meals like steelhead with rosemary orange beurre blanc, and day trips led by National Geographic photographers, historians, and naturalists. One day you’ll explore the native artistry of the region’s tribes (as well as Rodin sculptures) at the Maryhill Museum, while the next you’ll have your hair blown back on a jet boat up the majestic Hells Canyon. And if you’ve got a little more Meriwether in you, take advantage of the ship’s bikes, kayaks, and Zodiak rafts. From $4,390; Sept 13–Oct 20.
: American Cruiselines also offers an eight-day paddlewheel cruise up the river (from $3,750), and Un-Cruise Adventures runs a seven-day journey aboard an early Victorian steamer (from $3,195).