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Bridge over the Mississippi River in La Crosse
Bridge over the Mississippi River in La Crosse

What Are the 7 Best Ports of Call on the Mississippi River?

Embark on an immersive journey along the mighty Mississippi River, exploring 7 captivating ports of Call. Read more to unveil the treasures on this extraordinary cruise.

By Cruise Booking Team

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With its famous paddle wheel and alluring history, the Mississippi River forms an enchanting waterway that threads through the heart of America. A cruise on the Mississippi River is a cultural feast intertwined with history. Every port of call offers something different, from buzzing cities to historic Civil War battlegrounds. Here are the seven most beautiful ports of call along the Mississippi River, a must-stop destination for all kinds of travelers.

7 Must-Visit Ports along the Mississippi River

1. New Orleans, Louisiana: A Must-See Lively Mississippi River Port

New Orleans is a place without the need for an introduction. With its yearly Mardi Gras celebrations, enchanting atmosphere, and world-class jazz music, New Orleans is a port of call you should not miss. The city's rich cultural atmosphere and sumptuous Southern and Creole cuisine leave a lasting impression on cruisers.

2. Vicksburg, Mississippi: A Glimpse into the Civil War on the Mississippi

At Vicksburg, cruisers go back to the Civil War era. The National Military Park boasts over 1,370 monuments and markers that explore the city's siege and defense. Adding to the port's historical richness are antebellum plantations, old churches, and an abundantly stocked museum of model ships called the Old Depot Museum.

3. Baton Rouge, Louisiana: Louisiana's State Capital Is a Foodie Haven

Baton Rouge is a smelting pot of African-American and Caribbean cultures, a heaven for food lovers. With a cuisine of Creole and Cajun, the city is an idle place for foodies. Louisiana's Old State Capitol, the new state capitol building, and life at a 19th-century plantation, LSU Rural Life Museum, are all open to exploration by visitors.

4. Memphis, Tennessee: The Home to Numerous Musical Geniuses along the Mississippi

Music lovers have no better home than Memphis, the birthplace of rock 'n' roll. Elvis Presley's Graceland is a major attraction, but the city offers more, including the National Civil Rights Museum and the expansive Shelby Farms Park. Live music echoes through the streets, creating a vibrant atmosphere for cruisers.

5. St. Louis, Missouri: The Gateway to the West

Sitting astride the mighty Mississippi and with a bird's eye view provided by its Gateway Arch, St. Louis is known as America's gateway to the West. Visitors can tour the Anheuser-Busch Brewery and the Missouri Botanical Garden and experience St. Louis's exciting history.

6. Hannibal, Missouri: The Location of Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn's Adventures

Hannibal, forever associated with Mark Twain's literary masterpieces, invites cruisers to rediscover the adventures of Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn. The Mark Twain Boyhood Home & Museum and other Twain-related sites offer a nostalgic journey through American literature.

7. St. Paul, Minnesota: A Minnesotan City Bursting with History and Culture

St. Paul, one of the Twin Cities, is a tapestry woven from history and culture. Historic homes, museums, art galleries, and the scenic Indian Mounds Regional Park testify to its diversity. Originally a hangout for Prohibition gangsters, the Wabasha Street Caves can now be toured and provide this wondrous port with an atmosphere of mystery.

Why Cruise the Mississippi River?

There is no better way to understand American history and culture than cruising the Mississippi River. The leisurely pace of river cruising lets travelers get a taste of each port — the flavor and history. Whether it's the lively energy of New Orleans or the serene beauty of St. Paul, each cruise destination has a different piece to talk about what makes America tick.

Related: Viking Mississippi River Cruise Ship


A trip on the Mississippi River is more than a holiday; it's a voyage through time and culture. The seven ports of call highlighted here offer a diverse and enriching experience for cruisers of all interests. So, set sail on the iconic waters of the Mississippi and enjoy the heartland of America. Book your cruise with and immerse yourself in the captivating tales of the Mississippi River.

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