Eastbound, Portland to Clarkston
Eastbound, Portland to Clarkston Map

Eastbound, Portland to Clarkston

These are the original words, and spelling of “ocean,” William Clark scrawled in his journal on November 7, 1805. One could hardly blame him for forgetting his spelling lessons in all the excitement. Experience the same sense of excitement and wonder as your journey begins in Portland near the Pacific Ocean, the objective of Lewis and Clark’s expeditionary party, the Corps of Discovery. You will visit many historic, scenic and enjoyable sites along your Columbia and Snake River voyage to Clarkston. If you’re looking for something tailored more to a specific interest, you might enjoy the Premium Experience Excursion to the Walla Walla Wine Trail or a trip to the Western Antique Aeroplane & Automobile Museum.


  • The largest and most elegant riverboat in the Pacific Northwest
  • Complimentary shore excursions in every port
  • Included deluxe hotel stay before your voyage – includes breakfast, taxes, porterage and transfers to the American Empress
  • Complimentary wine and beer with dinner
  • Complimentary cappuccino, espresso, bottled water and soft drinks throughout your voyage
  • Regional pacific northwest cuisine utilizing fresh ingredients creatively combined with a contemporary flair
  • Gracious service from a friendly, All-American staff
  • Country club-casual ambiance, no formal wear required
  • Daily lectures by the Riverlorian, our onboard history and culture expert
  • All staterooms feature a balcony or picture window with dramatic scenery unfolding before your eyes 24 hours a day
  • Our own dedicated fleet of luxury coaches

Deck Plan

View 2014 American Empress Deck Plan

Hotel Stay - Portland

Day 1: Hotel Stay - Portland, OR

The “City of Roses” is an eclectic blend of art galleries, coffee shops, museums and farm-to-table restaurants with a spirited vibe. Marvel at the beauty of more than 8,000 roses at the International Rose Test Garden or spend the day discovering nature’s boundless power at nearby Mount St. Helens. The day is yours to check into your hotel and enjoy this wonderful city.

Embark - Portland

Day 2: Embark - Portland, OR

Departure: 6:00 p.m.

Enjoy complimentary breakfast at your hotel, and enjoy the morning in Portland before embarking on your American Empress cruise. Onboard, settle into your spacious stateroom and get to know your new home.

Premium Tour Options:

Premium Choice Tour #1 - Pre-Cruise: Mount St. Helens Volcano Tour

Welcome to Portland, Oregon; located near the confluence of the Willamette and Columbia Rivers. Known as the “City of Roses,” Portland was established in 1851. Largely settled by travelers of the Oregon Trail, Portland is the largest city in Oregon but is better known for its laid back small-town feel. We will tour all of the highlights of the City of Roses on a guided city tour aboard our industry leading motorcoaches as we head towards Mount St. Helens.

Mount St. Helens is well known for its catastrophic explosion in 1980 and is an active Stratovolcano along the Pacific Ring of Fire. 50 miles north of Portland, Mount St. Helens is a beautiful sight to behold and sits high atop the horizon of Portland. Guests will enjoy an up-close look at this violent volcano with an extensive guided tour with an included lunch.

8 hours
Tour Capacity:
50 guests

Premium Choice Tour #2 - Pre-Cruise: Portland City Tour - The City of Roses

Explore the Portland, Oregon. We’ll embark on a narrated tour of this Pacific Northwest Town dubbed The “City of Roses.” Guests are welcomed by a view of the historic Willamette River which flows through the downtown before crossing over one of ten bridges and into Old Town where the original settlement began. Next we will view America’s second largest Chinatown before continuing on to Pioneer Square and continue to the International Rose Test Gardens where, in the summer months, over ten thousand blooms create a colorful frame for a panoramic view of Portland. As we continue on, we’ll visit Washington Park and the World Forestry Center where you can learn of the importance of timber industry of the Pacific Northwest. On the last leg of the tour passes through Portland State University and the riverfront where you can view the life on the busy waterway and take a picturesque drive down Naito Avenue before setting off for the American Empress.

3 hours
Tour Capacity:
100 guests

Day 3: Astoria, OR

Included Hop-on Hop-off Tour: 
Explore this historic pioneer city situated near the mouth of the Columbia River; Named after John Jacob Astor, an American Investor and owner of the American Fur Company. This tour begins with a stop at the Riverwalk; a four-mile paved walkway overlooking the beautiful Columbia River. In addition to the remarkable views, guests can explore the statues, shops, cafes, docks and historic canneries dotting the path. Guest who wish to can choose to board the riverfront trolley that runs along the banks for an extra fee. 

Next stop, the Flavel House and Carriage House Museum. The Flavel House stands proudly as a monument of national significance. As a perfectly preserved example of Queen Anne architecture, this historic abode was once the home of Captain George Flavel, one of Astoria’s most influential citizens in the late 1800s. Guests can tour this 11,000 square foot elegant mansion as well as the detached Carriage House Museum and Visitor’s Center.

If you’re seeking the perfect vantage point to view the majestic valley and the mouth of the Columbia River, the next stop will end your search. The peak of the Astoria Column sits 600 feet above sea level and boasts an incredible 365-degree view. Guests who are up to the challenge can climb the 164-step spiral staircase to the top of this spire for a majestic observation point, or remain on the ground to examine the ornate murals depicting 14 significant events from Oregon’s history.

Last stop on our tour is the Heritage Museum. Learn the history and culture of Oregon through their permanent and alternating exhibit galleries that beautifully capsulate the exciting history and culture of Oregon and the Columbia River. Located within Astoria’s Old City Hall building, this neoclassical structure pays tribute to the hunters, loggers and fishermen that forged this new territory and depicts the history of this frontier town.

Before returning to the boat, guests can visit the Columbia River Maritime Museum for a reduced fee when showing their American Queen Identification Card. Here, guests can experience interactive displays, galleries and collections representing the history of the mighty Columbia River throughout time.

Premium Tour Options:

Premium Choice Tour #1 - Your Mission - The Lewis & Clark Experience

Join us as we re-trace the history of America’s most famous frontiersmen. We’ll begin with the exploration of Station Camp. Occupied for ten days by the Corps of Discovery and used as a departure point for an overland trek to their first views of the Pacific Ocean. Explore this historical point in America’s History as the first leg of our exploration on the Lewis and Clark Trail.

Then, we’ll discover the last stage of the Lewis and Clark Expedition as we set off for Cape Disappointment overlooking the confluence of the Columbia River and the Pacific Ocean. It was at this site where the American Pioneer’s two year expedition, and dream of discovering the Pacific Ocean via river, finally came to fruition. Explore the Interpretative center’s extensive and thorough timeline that documents the entire journey of these intrepid frontiersmen and experience the beauty and power of the Pacific Ocean from the enclosed overlook as the waves crash along the banks below. In addition to being the home to the Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center, these rocky banks were the set of “The Guardian,” a 2006 blockbuster staring acclaimed actor Kevin Costner.

As we continue our path along the Lewis and Clark Expedition, we’ll stop at Fort Clatsop. Made famous as the winter encampment for the Corps of Discovery (Lewis and Clark and their crew). Here, guests can enjoy exhibits in the interpretive center, exhibit hall, gift shop, view films outlying the historic journey and explore a replica of the forts built by Lewis and Clark in their attempts to maintain shelter during the harsh winters.

4 hours
Tour Capacity:
100 guests

Premium Choice Tour #2 - Zip Lining Adventure

Step off the luxurious decks of the American Empress and into the natural wonders of Oregon—one of America’s most beautiful and un-kept landscapes. We’ll bring you slightly outside of your comfort zone and allow guests to experience the wilderness from the best vantage point—soaring above the ground, within the trees and over the waterways of the area.

Today’s tour takes us to Highlife Adventures, a best in class zip lining experience. Guests of all ages can safely enjoy this experience as they are securely tethered onto one of eight courses throughout the forests and mountains of Oregon. Guests can be as adventurous or modest as they’d like since you can choose your own speed. Those with an extreme adventurist spirit can zip through, over lakes and through the trees and even choose to take a dunk in the lake as you soar by.

Don’t just visit Oregon, experience the wilderness of the lakes and timber throughout the mountains of the Pacific Northwest in this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that you won’t soon forget.

3.5 hours
Tour Capacity:
50 guests

Day 4: Stevenson, WA

Included Hop-on Hop-off Tour: 
This included tour begins with a stop in Downtown Stevenson, Washington. Guests can hop off here and enjoy the various local specialty shops and boutiques lining the streets.

Then, we’ll stop at the Columbia Gorge Interpretive Center. Located in the heart of the Columbia River Gorge Scenic Area, the Interpretive Center brings life to human stories of natural history in our nation’s most compelling landscape. Here, guests can learn the local story of the geography and culture of the region and catch an under-water glimpse of spawning Salmon passing through the Fish Ladders. Exhibits celebrate 15,000 years of history.

Finally, experience an incredible man-made engineering feat at the Bonneville Dam. The Bonneville Dam, completed in 1938, is an electrical power generator for the local area using Hydro power. Guests can enjoy a self-guided tour of this powerhouse as they learn about its progression and improvements over time, the exhausting build project that encountered numerous obstacles due to the unique geology of the area and the unique way the dam assists spawning Salmon pass through the dam. Witness the ingenious apparatus that allows the Salmon population to thrive in the Salmon Ladder viewing area and learn about the importance of this invention.

Premium Tour Options:

Premium Choice Tour #1 - Multnomah Falls and Crown Point - Including the Old Scenic Highway

Today’s experience captures the awe-inspiring beauty of America’s most scenic landscapes. Upon departing the American Empress, guests will board our industry leading motorcoach and begin their excursion as we set off for a breathtaking drive along America’s most scenic stretch of highway. The Scenic Highway was built in 1913 and custom-crafted to enhance, yet not interrupt, the perfection of the surrounding natural wonders. Known as one of the greatest engineering feats; the “King of Roads” will lead us high into the mountains towards Crown Point. Before arriving at the Point, we’ll pull off the highway for scenic stop at the Women’s Forum State Scenic Viewpoint. Here, guests can capture a perfect photo to remind them of their voyages through this beautiful landscape. Perhaps the most widely photographed vantage point of the Columbia River Gorge below. As we reach our destination, aptly named for its unique formation and created over 14 million years ago by a lava flow, Crown Point offers a view fit for a king. At the height of the bluff sits Vista House, perched high above the Columbia River as would a crown on a King. Vista House offers a panoramic view of the breathtaking Columbia river more than 700 feet below. Built in 1916 and known not only for its magnificent views, but also for its unique octagonal shape—this overlook contains a gift shop and interpretive displays exhibiting the historic and geological points of interest of the area.

As we continue our journey we will embark, once again, on the Scenic Highway and continue to Oregon’s highest waterfall and perhaps the most picturesque, Multnomah Falls. Located in the heart of the Columbia River gorge, we will depart the motorcoach and set out for the 45-foot long footbridge that crosses a mere 105-feet above the pounding water of the falls. As the footbridge spans from cliff to cliff, guests can cross the suspended wooden structure amidst the mist and fog of the beautiful cascade below as they witness the majestic birds-eye-view of the surrounding Gorge.

As we complete our drive on the 13 miles of Scenic Highway, we will pass eight additional falls including Latourell Falls, Oregon’s most unique fall which drops straight down from an over-hanging cliff; Wahkeena Falls, a 242-foot high subtle cascade that received its name from Native American’s word for “most beautiful” and last but certainly not least; Horsetail Falls, named by its unique equestrian shape.

3 hours
Tour Capacity:
100 guests

Premium Choice Tour #2 - The Beauty and Bounty of the Pacific Northwest

Explore the Fruit Loop; a breathtakingly beautiful 35-mile loop that leads to the base of Mt. Hood. Our motorcoach will embark on a narrated tour of this scenic roadway, crossing through orchards, forests and farmland unique to the area and its fertile soil. One cannot experience this area by simply driving through; we’ll make a few key stops along the way. Our first stop offers a paradoxical view. Guests may recognize this lodge as the eerie Overlook Hotel used in the blockbuster film, “The Shining.” But there’s nothing scary about the Timberline Lodge, it’s basked in beauty and sits humbly in the shadows of the enormous Mt. Hood. Here guests can tour the hotel and stand in the very spot where President Franklin D. Roosevelt delivered a memorable and moving speech in 1937. Explore the vast hotel before gathering in the warmth of the great stone hearth fireplace for coffee, cocoa and pastries.

Continuing on our tour of the Fruit Loop, we will stop for a homemade all-American lunch prepared with local ingredients and fruits harvested right here in the region. At the Parkdale Grange Hall, lunch includes an in-depth presentation by local horticulturalists who will explain why this area is so uniquely suited for the countries best produce and wines.

As we travel even further, into the valleys and orchards, we will make a stop at The Fruit Company. This family-owned company has been offering the fruits and “jems” found only in these fertile valleys to the rest of the country via their mail order program since 1942. They’ve taken pride in offering local produce and treats, showcasing the fruits of the region, their uniqueness and pristine quality—like nowhere else on earth.

We will then experience the fruits of the local fertile ground as we head down the Fruit Loop to the Mt. Hood Winery. Here, guests can enjoy samples of wine produced here at this historic Winery.

Finally, we reach Multnomah Falls, in the heart of the Columbia River gorge, we will depart the motorcoach and set out for the 45-foot long footbridge that crosses a mere 105-feet above the pounding water of the falls. As the footbridge spans from cliff to cliff, guests can cross the suspended wooden structure amidst the mist and fog of the beautiful cascade below as they witness the majestic birds-eye-view of the surrounding Gorge.

Note: Inclusion of the Timberline Lodge is dependent upon weather conditions. Due to its elevation and remote location, the Timberline Lodge stop will not be available in winter weather conditions. In the event that the road leading to the Timberline Lodge is impassable, there will be a substitution made including a shopping stop in Downtown Hood River. The Timberline Lodge sits at 6,000 feet above sea level-those at heightened risk for altitude sickness should avoid this tour.

8 hours
Tour Capacity:
50 guests
The Dalles

Day 5: The Dalles, OR

Included Hop-on Hop-off Tour: 
Welcome to The Dalles, Oregon; known as the end of the Oregon Trail! Hop on our industry leading Hop on-Hop off Motorcoach and set off to experience everything that The Dalles has to offer. First stop, the Original Courthouse Museum. This historic building was built in 1859 and is known as the first courthouse of the Rocky Mountains. Here guests can experience exhibits showcasing the history and culture of the local region and explore the courthouse. Next stop, The Dalles Visitor’s Center where guests can learn more about this Pioneer river town followed by a stop at the Fort Dalles Museum and Interpretive Center; an original military base built in the 1800’s. Guest can experience unique collections of military and pioneer artifacts as well as the historic wagons that brought early settlers to the Oregon Trail’s last stop. Before exploring the shops of the Downtown Shopping area guests can stop at the Sunshine Mills Winery. Originally a 130-year-old abandoned wheat mill and now a state of the art Quenett boutique winery and home of Copa Di Vino-a unique invention by entrepreneur and wine enthusiast, James Martin. Featured on ABC’s The Shark Tank, guests can stop in at the one-of-a-kind wine tasting room to try a sample of the new wine trend that’s sweeping the nation, one glass at a time.

Premium Tour Options:

Premium Choice Tour #1 - High Octane Antiques

Today’s tour takes guests back in time…Time when flight was a novelty rather than a daily mode of transportation, when the automobile required a crank and power steering was almost a century away. We will take you on an exclusive tour to the Western Antique Aeroplane and Automobile Museum, also known as the WAAAM. Enjoy a guided tour of this facility offering an extensive collection of over 130 antique cars and hangers full of meticulously restored aeroplanes from as far back as 1917. Available exclusively to American Empress guests; enjoy an included tour of the work shop where all of the restorations take place. What is most unique about the automobiles and aeroplanes on display—the entire collection is still in working order and not only can fly—but does on a regular basis! The pilots take these historical tributes to America’s history in flight to the air as often as they can and proudly maintain them in full working order. Guests can explore the collection of Model T’s, Studebakers, the 1914 Detroit Electric, Harley Davidsons, military vehicles and so much more! Want to test out their capabilities? Also available, a once-in-a-lifetime chance to take to the air in a historic plane or glider for an airborne tour of Mt. Hood offered at an additional fee. (Private Airplane and Glider rides must be booked in advance)

3.5 hours
Tour Capacity:
100 guests

Premium Choice Tour #2 - International Art and Regional Wines

Today we explore the highlights of the region and the fruits of Washington’s fertile soil alongside international works of art as we head towards the Maryhill Art Museum. Sitting high atop the Columbia River Gorge, with Mt. Hood stretching high into the horizon, the Maryhill Art Museum offers incredible views as well an expansive art museum. First, we will explore the extensive and eclectic collections of the Maryhill Museum of Art. One would never dream that this museum, sitting within the 5,300-acre complex, could house such diverse works of art from cultures around the world. Guests can experience exhibits featuring artifacts ranging from Marie, the Queen of Romania’s Royal Crown, an International Chess set collection boasting 100 sets of ornately carved pieces from around the globe, a century-old Art Nouveau Glass exhibit, American Indian artifacts and beadworks to an expansive Auguste Rodin collection featuring The Thinker and The Hand of God. Roam the outdoor sculpture garden of impressively large pieces of art perfectly framed by the Columbia River Gorge Vista in the background.

Next, we will travel to Jacob Williams Winery; offering a picture perfect location to sample their award winning and locally made wines within their family-owned facility. Relax, sit back, and soak up the incredible views of Mt. Hood, the Columbia River, orchards, vineyards and the rolling hills of Oregon as you sip on samples of wine deliciously crafted from the local vines.

3.5 hours
Tour Capacity:
100 guests
Sacajawea State Park

Day 6: Sacajawea State Park, WA

Included Tour: Sacajawea State Park and Interpretive Center 
Explore Sacajawea State Park and Interpretive Center. Located at the confluence of the Columbia and Snake Rivers, the Sacajawea State Park marks a significant point in American History. Guests can explore the Interpretive Center on the Park grounds which feature the history of Lewis and Clark. The on-site exhibits and a knowledgeable presentation at 10:00 AM and 2:00 PM will highlight the history on this site and focuses on the Core of Discovery’s voyage from modern-day Illinois to these grounds with the helpful guidance of their Native American interpreter, Sacajawea.

Included Tour: The Country Mercantile Store 
Also included at this port; The Country Mercantile Store. This country store is a working farm and unique store filled with gourmet foods, jams, local items, homemade ice cream, hand dipped chocolates and one-of-a-kind gifts for guests to explore and take home as a special memento of their time in Washington. Enjoy a guided tour of the facility and the candy factory at this sweet location.

Premium Tour Options:

Premium Choice Tour #1 - Hanford Research Facility

Explore the Hanford Research Facility, a place of great significance in the World’s history. Built in 1943 as part of the Manhatten Project, the Hanford Research Facility, also known as the Hanford Project and Hanford Works is home to the B-Reactor. The first large scale plutonium production reactor in the world, the B-Reactor produced the plutonium used in the Atomic Bomb detonated over Nagasaki, Japan five days before the end of WWII. Today the site is mostly decommissioned but still maintains some functional nuclear facilities. Guests will receive a guided tour of the plant including an informative video, the 9 reactors on the banks of the Columbia River as well as the historical B-Reactor.

After the conclusion of this exclusive tour, guests will have the option to stop at the Country Mercantile Store included in the Hop on-Hop off tour at this port. Guests can hop off here, enjoy the store and a full tour of the Candy Factory before returning to the boat. All guests on this tour will receive complimentary vouchers for lunch at the Country Mercantile Store.

4.5 hours
Tour Capacity:
50 guests

Premium Choice Tour #2 - Pendelton Round-Up! (Only available on September 11, 2014)

Today’s western adventure highlights a tradition over 100 years in the making. The town of Pendleton celebrates their western heritage every September with a week-long festival dubbed: the “Pendleton Round-Up”.

First, experience the festival’s namesake, Pendleton, Oregon. This traditional cowboy town was first established in 1868 and named after one-time Vice Presidential candidate, George H. Pendleton. Seated near the banks of the Snake River, Pendleton boasts it’s representation of “The Real West” as their town motto. Pendleton’s proximity to river transportation made it a prime location for the Bishop Family to set up their textile industry. We will tour Pendleton Woolen Mills, established by the Bishop family in the late 1800’s, before heading towards the “Round-Up.”

Join us, as we explore the Pendleton Round-Up Hall of Fame. Showcasing the history of the Rodeo and festival, exhibits at the Hall of Fame depict the exceptional men, women and livestock from the rodeo’s 100 years of history. Also on display are memorabilia and artifacts from the celebration’s past. Before the show begins, you can explore the various local food vendors for a bite to eat and browse the Native American Outdoor Market for a unique souvenir of your trip and honoring the heritage of the region.

Then, it’s time for the main event! Take a seat in the arena as you watch a time-honored western tradition, bronco-busting rodeo competition. With award winning rodeo riders and prized bulls, this lively show is sure not to entertain.

8 hours

Premium Choice Tour #3 - Progressive Walla Walla Wine Trail

Tour the region that produces wine unlike any other. A region that demands patience and perseverance but bears fruit that captures the heart and soul of a landscape that is uniquely American. Join us, as we travel along the Walla Walla Wine Trail for a progressive experience offering the full wine-enthusiast experience. Our progressive wine journey follows the regional grapes through the process to transform them into award winning vintages. We will begin with the unique agriculture of the land, to the bottling and ageing process, before finally reaching the perfected glass of local wine.

Travel through Walla Walla, Washington as our knowledgeable local guide offers a guided tour of this unique and historic town. We will arrive first at Basel Cellars Estate Winery. Here, guests can enjoy a tasting of wines from local vineyards as well as an engaging explanation of the agricultural aspects of wine production in the Walla Walla area. Discover why this location produces high quality and distinctive wines and learn about the effort and procedures involved to create the perfect vintage. We will continue on to Seven Hills Winery. Established in 1988, Seven Hills Winery is Walla Walla’s oldest and most respected winery. Enjoy a sample of the wines that helped shape this region and secure its position as a wine production capital world-wide. Here, learn about the production side of winery—the intricacies of wine making from ageing to the bottling process.

As our experience continues, guests make the short stroll to the Historic Marcus Whitman Hotel for a buffet lunch. Built in 1928 and named in honor of missionary Marcus Whitman, this stately hotel stands proudly as a keystone within the Walla Walla community. Enjoy lunch in this beautiful hotel along with a presentation from their in-house sommelier who will explain the intricacies of wine paring and offer insider knowledge on the art of wine choice.

Our final stop brings us to the crescendo of our progressive wine experience. At Three River Winery guests can sample the wines produced from the vines harvested from this 16-acre site. Perched atop a small knoll overlooking the breathtaking vineyards below, Three River Winery offers the perfect ambiance to appreciate the artful wine created on site. Enjoy a wine tasting paired with a sweet treat all within their rustic tasting room, complete with exposed timber, vaulted ceilings and a warm stone fireplace as the perfect cap to your full wine experience. A beautifully delicious ending to a spectacular day in America’s wine country.

8 hours
Tour Capacity:
50 guests
River Cruising

Day 7: River Cruising, WA

Enjoy a day of scenic Snake River cruising. Picturesque canyon walls and crevasses will keep you guessing as to what lies around the next bend. Wildlife of many varieties can be spotted in the area, from bighorn sheep to gray wolves to bald eagles.


Day 8: Clarkston, WA

Included Morning Tour: Nez Perce National Historic Park 
Experience the history and culture of the Nez Perce people as we travel to the Nez Perce National Historical Park. Learn about the historic and present-day way of life of these Native American’s whose name is derived from the French “Pierced Nose.” The Nez Perce people are well known for their involvement and assistance with the Lewis and Clark Expedition and guests can learn first-hand how they were trusted by the Corps of Discovery through an exclusive presentation by the staff of Nez Perce National Historical Park. 
This tour departs at 8:30 AM and 9:30 AM.

Included Afternoon Tour: Lewiston to Clarkston Shuttle 
Travel to Clarkston, Washington, the brother city to Lewiston, Idaho. Nestled in the confluence of the Snake and Clearwater Rivers, this town was ironically never a stop on the Lewis and Clark trail but both boast the early American explorers’ names. Discover this historical town first settled in 1862. Guests can visit the Nez Perce County Historical Society and Museum that strives to preserve and interpret the history of the local region and culture. With rotating exhibits that chronicle the early history of the town and the surrounding are. After discovering the history of the town, guests can enjoy free time in the downtown region for shopping and independent exploring or hop on the trolley for a ride around town.

Premium Tour Options:

Premium Choice Tour #1 - Hells Canyon Scenic Jet Boat Experience

Join us for an exclusive American Empress nature adventure into Hells Canyon; North America's deepest Gorge. As we board the ultra-comfortable Coast Guard approved luxury jet boats, you will immediately feel the adventure begin. We will leave directly from our Clarkston dock and travel deep into the narrowest part of Hell’s Canyon on the Snake River. Guests will enjoy, not only the excitement of being in this beautiful natural setting with its remarkable geological landscape, but also a naturalist’s journey while viewing Big Horn sheep, deer, and other wildlife. Our exclusive nature tour of Hell’s Canyon is a fully narrated tour including the history and geology of this natural wonder.

As an extra bonus, guests will enjoy a stop at the Idaho Garden Creek Preserve, owned by the Nature Conservancy in Hells Canyon, to stretch your legs and enjoy a snack and refreshments. The Idaho Garden Creek Preserve, once a working cattle ranch, is now a facility welcoming its visitors to explore and enjoy this section of the Gorge. Stroll through the orchard where deer and turkey make their home, snack on seasonal fresh fruit or just sit back and take in the awe-inspiring beauty of nature’s landscape that surrounds you.

Note: Jet boats are generally enclosed, heated and contain onboard bathroom facilities. All boats are inspected by the Coast Guard and are driven by licensed captains.

5 hours
Tour Capacity:
150 guests

Premium Choice Tour #2 - In the Shadows of Lewiston

Experience Lewiston, Idaho—the stories seldom told and often forgotten. Embark on this historical tour beginning with a ride through town in a 1920’s-style trolley. This narrated tour provides guests with an overview of the history of our host town along with the eerie and long-forgotten tales of the spirits and ghosts still present among its citizens. Included is a tour of the acclaimed Normal Hill and cemetery in addition to a walking tour with views of historic Victorian homes throughout the town.

1.5 hours
Tour Capacity:
20 guests

Premium Choice Tour #3 - White Water Hell's Canyon Jet Boat - All Day Experience

Looking for a little more excitement? Guests can opt for the American Empress’ longer 9-hour Jet Boat adventure for a more in-depth experience that includes class 4 and 5 rapids. Enjoy the same breathtaking views of the briefer, slower paced alternative as well as a stop at the Idaho Garden Creek Preserve.

9 hours
Tour Capacity:
50 guests

Day 9: Disembark in Clarkston, WA

Arrival: 8:00 a.m.

Disembark the American Empress and make your way home from your authentic Pacific Northwest Experience or consider extending your stay in Spokane with our three day, two night Naturally Nice City Stay package. Click here for full details

Premium Tour Options:

Premium Choice Tour #1 - Post-Cruise: Near Perfect, Near Nature City Tour

Welcome to Spokane, Washington the hub of the Inland Northwest. In the 1870's early settlers were drawn here by the Spokane Falls for power, rich agricultural land, the building of the railroads and what became the richest silver mining area in the world in nearby Northern Idaho. Your post-cruise tour begins at the American Empress and continues with a narrated driving tour of Spokane as we make our way to Manito Park where guests will tour their beautifully pristine gardens including Duncan Garden, the Rose Garden and Conservatory.

We’ll continue our Near Perfect, Near Nature tour with a walking tour of Riverfront Park. Take a guided walking tour of the historic buildings downtown as we head to Riverfront Park, former sight of Expo '74, the first environmental-oriented World's Fair. This 100-acre expansive park boasts a historic Carousel, larger than life Red Radio Flyer wagon (so big you can slide down the handle!) and views of the river falls and rock channels. Take a ride on the 1909 carousel and walk through this urban greenscape on a guided walking tour that covers all of the highlights including the Sculpture Path with unique sculptures of varying mediums, Stop at the Garbage Goat to offer some trash for its afternoon snack – yes it will eat your garbage. Guests wishing to get an up-close look at the cascading falls can hop on a sky-ride that travels over the river offering a perfect vantage point to experience the power and beauty of the falls below.

At the conclusion of this tour guests will arrive at the Spokane International Airport (Please book flights after 3:00 PM) or guests who have purchased the Post-Cruise City Stay Package will be transferred to the American Empress Post-Cruise Hotel.

4 hours
Tour Capacity:
100 guests


Night after night, top performers bring down the house with a variety and caliber of entertainment that is most notable. Step into the warm ambiance of the American Empress' Show Lounge and encounter stellar performances by one or more of the following acts:

Lynn Roberts
The last of the great American big band singers, Lynn Roberts is a reminder of a bygone time when bands were big and the sound was bigger. Having performed with, Harry James, Artie Shaw, Frank Sinatra and both Jimmy and Tommy Dorsey, Lynn is an authentic American treasure.  
Dick Hardwick
Dick Hardwick is living proof that comedy can be wholesome and funny. Dick’s comedy will take you back to a simpler time and awake your inner Gomer Pyle. 
Laura Sable & Bill Wiemuth
This amazing duo brings entertainment to the American Empress in both quantity and quality. Bill, a talented musician as well as magician performs “close-up” magic and backs Laura in her various shows, which include a tribute to the great ladies of song as well as the Red Hot Mama show and a tribute to Patsy Cline. 
Fred Bishop
Whether performing his tribute to the Rat Pack or his amazing Christmas show, Fred Bishop is a hit. A regular on the American Queen, Fred has the magic touch and carries himself with the professionalism that he has acquired from his many years on Broadway. 
Dave & Cathy
Playing a ride array of eclectic acoustic instruments, Dave & Cathy provide a folksy feel to their river songs. With a nice blend of Bluegrass and Folk musical styles, these performers reach a nice synergy with the riverboat culture while on board the American Empress.
Joe Stoddard
Oregon’s own Joe Stoddard recreates the great cowboy songs and offers his own version of humor. Since the days of Will Rogers, America has responded to the dry western wit that is central to Joe Stoddard’s show. 
Juggernaut Jug Band
This group performs a toe-tapping eclectic mix of blues, jug music, and bluegrass. Jug music is a purely American art form that was created at the docks of river towns such as Memphis, Louisville and New Orleans. 
Bobby Durham
A long standing member of the American Queen Entertainment staff, Bobby Durham brings his amazing, guitar and banjo show to the American Empress.  You will be amazed as Bobby takes you on a jazz journey by singing and playing your favorite tunes. Throw in a few rock and country songs and you have the incredible Bobby Durham Show.
Laura Cash
Country music flows through the veins of this amazing fiddle player and vocalist. As daughter-in-law of country legend Johnny Cash, Laura has a wealth of great stories and amazing country, bluegrass and gospel music to deliver to the masses
Storefront Congregation
America’s fastest rising Bluegrass act, Storefront Congregation has the feel and sound of an Alison Krause or Nickle Creek show.
The Quebe Sisters
The internationally renowned western swing performers, The Quebe Sisters, keep to the true roots of the great swing masters such as Bob Wills, Ray Price and the Sons of the Pioneers.  This Fort Worth based act is creating the new sound of swing by holding on to the roots and infusing it with their own brand of energy and fun.
Will Kiefer
Beloved American Queen Entertainer, Will Kiefer, delivers a knock-out performance aboard the American Empress with his incredible “Banjomania” show. This show is a platform that displays the depth of Will Kiefer’s talents as an instrumentalist and singer.


Rates are listed per person, double occupancy.

  • Priceblock Icon 9-Day Journey - 2014 - CSR


Category: AE- LS

LUXURY SUITES WITH VERANDA American Queen Stateroom Thumbnail LUXURY SUITES WITH VERANDA American Queen Stateroom
Season Dates Fare Theme
Apr 5 - Apr 13 $6,595
Apr 19 - Apr 27 $6,595
May 3 - May 11 $6,595
May 17 - May 25 $6,595
May 31 - Jun 8 $6,595
Jun 14 - Jun 22 $6,595
Jun 28 - Jul 6 $6,595
Jul 12 - Jul 20 $6,595
Jul 26 - Aug 3 $6,595
Aug 9 - Aug 17 $6,595
Aug 23 - Aug 31 $6,595
Sep 6 - Sep 14 $6,595
Sep 20 - Sep 28 $6,595
Oct 4 - Oct 12 $6,595
Oct 18 - Oct 26 $6,595
Nov 1 - Nov 9 $6,595

Own the American Empress, or at least feel as if you do, as you enjoy the best. From your spacious suite, you are treated to a sweeping river view with large windows facing both forward and starboard. Step out onto your private veranda and search the shores for wildlife. Sip a beverage and share conversation in your cozy sitting room complete with a large TV, sound system and cocktail table, as well as your own mini refrigerator and wet bar. Your plush bedroom is separate from the sitting room, allowing you to entertain while maintaining privacy.

410 sq. ft. – Queen Bed or Two Twin Beds – One Sofa Bed – Large View Windows – Private Veranda – Sitting Room – Panoramic View Forward and Starboard – Wet Bar – TV – Alarm Clock – Mini Refrigerator – Coffee Maker – Sound System – Safe


Category: AE - A

SUITES WITH VERANDA American Queen Stateroom Thumbnail SUITES WITH VERANDA American Queen Stateroom
Season Dates Fare Theme
Apr 5 - Apr 13 $5,795
Apr 19 - Apr 27 $5,795
May 3 - May 11 $5,795
May 17 - May 25 $5,795
May 31 - Jun 8 $5,795
Jun 14 - Jun 22 $5,795
Jun 28 - Jul 6 $5,795
Jul 12 - Jul 20 $5,795
Jul 26 - Aug 3 $5,795
Aug 9 - Aug 17 $5,795
Aug 23 - Aug 31 $5,795
Sep 6 - Sep 14 $5,795
Sep 20 - Sep 28 $5,795
Oct 4 - Oct 12 $5,795
Oct 18 - Oct 26 $5,795
Nov 1 - Nov 9 $5,795

Enjoy your large suite with a convivial sitting area and your own sound system. Your semiprivate veranda provides splendid river views from four stories above the river and also allows for direct access to the Vista View Deck for a stroll around the vessel.

310 sq. ft. – Queen Bed or 2 Twin Beds - Large View Windows – Semiprivate Veranda with Vista View Deck Access – Sitting Area – TV – Alarm Clock – Mini Refrigerator – Coffee Maker – Sound System – Safe


Category: AE - B

SUPERIOR VERANDA STATEROOMS American Queen Stateroom Thumbnail SUPERIOR VERANDA STATEROOMS American Queen Stateroom
Season Dates Fare Theme
Apr 5 - Apr 13 $5,295
Apr 19 - Apr 27 $5,295
May 3 - May 11 $5,295
May 17 - May 25 $5,295
May 31 - Jun 8 $5,295
Jun 14 - Jun 22 $5,295
Jun 28 - Jul 6 $5,295
Jul 12 - Jul 20 $5,295
Jul 26 - Aug 3 $5,295
Aug 9 - Aug 17 $5,295
Aug 23 - Aug 31 $5,295
Sep 6 - Sep 14 $5,295
Sep 20 - Sep 28 $5,295
Oct 4 - Oct 12 $5,295
Oct 18 - Oct 26 $5,295
Nov 1 - Nov 9 $5,295

Enjoy your spacious stateroom with a charming sitting area or panoramic view with large forward-facing windows. Your private veranda provides a quiet place to watch the ever-changing scenery.

210-250 sq. ft. – Queen Bed or 2 Twin Beds - Large View Windows – Private Veranda – Sitting Area or Panoramic View Forward – TV – Alarm Clock – Mini Refrigerator – Safe


Category: AE - C

DELUXE VERANDA STATEROOMS American Queen Stateroom Thumbnail DELUXE VERANDA STATEROOMS American Queen Stateroom
Season Dates Fare Theme
Apr 5 - Apr 13 $4,795
Apr 19 - Apr 27 $4,795
May 3 - May 11 $4,795
May 17 - May 25 $4,795
May 31 - Jun 8 $4,795
Jun 14 - Jun 22 $4,795
Jun 28 - Jul 6 $4,795
Jul 12 - Jul 20 $4,795
Jul 26 - Aug 3 $4,795
Aug 9 - Aug 17 $4,795
Aug 23 - Aug 31 $4,795
Sep 6 - Sep 14 $4,795
Sep 20 - Sep 28 $4,795
Oct 4 - Oct 12 $4,795
Oct 18 - Oct 26 $4,795
Nov 1 - Nov 9 $4,795

Deluxe veranda staterooms are a popular choice for many couples. Share a toast on your private veranda as you glide through the scenic Pacific Northwest.

180 sq. ft. – Queen Bed or 2 Twin Beds – View Windows – Private Veranda – TV – Alarm Clock – Mini Refrigerator – Safe


Category: AE - CS

Season Dates Fare Theme
Apr 5 - Apr 13 $5,695
Apr 19 - Apr 27 $5,695
May 3 - May 11 $5,695
May 17 - May 25 $5,695
May 31 - Jun 8 $5,695
Jun 14 - Jun 22 $5,695
Jun 28 - Jul 6 $5,695
Jul 12 - Jul 20 $5,695
Jul 26 - Aug 3 $5,695
Aug 9 - Aug 17 $5,695
Aug 23 - Aug 31 $5,695
Sep 6 - Sep 14 $5,695
Sep 20 - Sep 28 $5,695
Oct 4 - Oct 12 $5,695
Oct 18 - Oct 26 $5,695
Nov 1 - Nov 9 $5,695

The perfect option for the single traveler. Take advantage of all of the features found in a Deluxe Veranda Stateroom, scaled down slightly to meet the needs of a single guest.

160 sq. ft. – 1 Twin Bed – View Windows – Private Veranda – TV – Alarm Clock – Mini Refrigerator – Safe


Category: AE - E

VERANDA STATEROOMS American Queen Stateroom Thumbnail VERANDA STATEROOMS American Queen Stateroom
Season Dates Fare Theme
Apr 5 - Apr 13 $3,795
Apr 19 - Apr 27 $3,795
May 3 - May 11 $3,795
May 17 - May 25 $3,795
May 31 - Jun 8 $3,795
Jun 14 - Jun 22 $3,795
Jun 28 - Jul 6 $3,795
Jul 12 - Jul 20 $3,795
Jul 26 - Aug 3 $3,795
Aug 9 - Aug 17 $3,795
Aug 23 - Aug 31 $3,795
Sep 6 - Sep 14 $3,795
Sep 20 - Sep 28 $3,795
Oct 4 - Oct 12 $3,795
Oct 18 - Oct 26 $3,795
Nov 1 - Nov 9 $3,795

Our most affordable American Empress stateroom. Enjoy wonderful views from your veranda which provides access to the Vista View Deck. You will enjoy a more social experience with this semiprivate veranda option.

150 sq. ft. - Queen Bed or 2 Twin Beds – View Windows – Semiprivate Veranda with Vista View Deck Access – TV – Alarm Clock – Mini Refrigerator – Safe


Category: AE - D

Season Dates Fare Theme
Apr 5 - Apr 13 $4,395
Apr 19 - Apr 27 $4,395
May 3 - May 11 $4,395
May 17 - May 25 $4,395
May 31 - Jun 8 $4,395
Jun 14 - Jun 22 $4,395
Jun 28 - Jul 6 $4,395
Jul 12 - Jul 20 $4,395
Jul 26 - Aug 3 $4,395
Aug 9 - Aug 17 $4,395
Aug 23 - Aug 31 $4,395
Sep 6 - Sep 14 $4,395
Sep 20 - Sep 28 $4,395
Oct 4 - Oct 12 $4,395
Oct 18 - Oct 26 $4,395
Nov 1 - Nov 9 $4,395

This large stateroom provides river views through generously sized windows.

180 sq. ft. – View Windows – TV – Alarm Clock – Mini Refrigerator – Safe

Fares are in U.S. Dollars, are per guest, are based on double occupancy, and do not include air or land transportation. Fares for CS Category are based on single occupancy. Port Charges of $109 per guest are additional and not included in the fare. All fares and itineraries are subject to change; we are not responsible for errors and omissions. Additional terms and conditions apply. *Stateroom information provided here is a general representation of the stateroom categories. Actual features and amenities vary slightly between and within stateroom categories. Verandas on the Vista View Deck are semiprivate because the public walkway runs just over the railing. Call for details.

Booking Request

Please take a moment to complete the following information so that we may process your request to travel with us. Once we have received your information, we will contact you to confirm the booking.

Please feel free to contact us at 1-888-749-5280 during our regular office hours to speak with us directly.

We look forward to welcoming you on one of our steamboat journeys.

The American Queen Steamboat Company

* Required Fields
Voyage Selection
Eastbound, Portland to Clarkston
Primary Passenger
Secondary Passenger
700 characters max

This looks like an interesting journey and I thought that you might be interested.


Your browser does not support automatic bookmarking