Christmas Markets. Uniworld Basel to Cologne.
Uniworld's River Queen has recently been refurbished in an over-the-top Royal motif that is intentionally gaudy attaining a certain flamboyant charm. Fastidiously clean, common areas and rooms were bright and mirror-lined for a feeling of space.
The food was tasty, simple, plentiful and, thankfully, not "fake fine dining".
Internet (via WiFi and the onboard computers) was priced at 15E for the trip. The connection, however, was mostly slow and frustrating - even more so than big ships.
Staff were friendly, helpful and really seemed to care about service. The Tour Manager, Wauter, was efficient and prompt with little time for guests who wanted to delay others. He got things done without fuss. On Christmas Eve, he was a willing and enthusiastic Santa. during the trip, he seemed to be everywhere at once. Great job!
Entertainment was local, unpretentious, lively and diverse. But if you expect Vegas Acts, River Ships are not for you.
Mario, the hotel Manager, ran a tight operation with a strong team and excellent service. Restaurant was similar with an attentive and helpful team led by Stanislaw.
Onboard laundry, while slow, was an unexpected and prized bonus for light travelers.
All in all, a delightful Christmas Cruise with an interesting itinerary of larger cities. Not for those who want to see quaint villages. Good value.