73 Amsterdam Cruises for the Disabled Cruise Reviews

For the most part, I have good words and praise for the actual cruise ship staff. They could not fix or be held accountable for things beyond their control, chiefly the marketing of what this cruise was supposed to deliver. The ... Read More
For the most part, I have good words and praise for the actual cruise ship staff. They could not fix or be held accountable for things beyond their control, chiefly the marketing of what this cruise was supposed to deliver. The cruise is billed as a Christmas market tour. But let’s put this promise to test. Day 2 involved a departure from AMS at 13.00, so what do you really see of Amsterdam Christmas markets? Essentially nothing. The main Christmas market does not yet open until mid December, plus the ship leaves mid day so you barely have time to either do the bus ride, spend maybe an hour and half “discovering” Volendam/ Edam, or take a one hour canal ride so you can be back on the ship in time for departure. Day 3. We didn’t arrive to Cologne until 13.00 but can’t disembark until well after 15.00. We are a good distance, at least 45 min walk, to the first Christmas markets by the cathedral. And these markets are not nearly the better ones truly worth seeing. The time is limited because of the need to get back on before 22.00 departure, but I will be generous and say that this opportunity represents the only decent opportunity to see a Christmas market without needing to strap on skates. By the way, cruising through the Rhine during the section loaded with castles sounds lovely until you understand that you will miss most of them due to the “surprise” that the sunset is about 16.00 hours. Must not be a well- known fact, that it gets dark, for the Scenic schedulers. So this part of the trip was not very interesting. Day 4 Kolblenz/ Cochem. I did not go to the Kolbenz, preferring not to spend the majority of my day on bus. I left the boat at Cochem, after the ship arrived, and had barely an hour and a half before needing to be back on the boat. So much for seeing anything. Day 5 Heidelberg – We probably had about 2 hours, by the time you subtract bus travel time, to see anything in this town. When we arrived, the Christmas markets did not open for at least another half hour. Plus, it is Sunday and if anyone in your company knows anything about Germany, then they will know that pretty much EVERYTHING is closed on a Sunday. So, we got to see a lot of closed stores. By the way, we were in the “slow walk” group and our tour guide just motors along at a speed not suitable for a slow walk group. Day 6: Skipped this one because again, it was not worth it. Didn’t fly half way around the world just to get stuffed in a tour bus and see nothing. The time allocated for Baden-Baden was very small, especially compared to the bus time. Day 7. Ironically, and by accident, I managed to get about 4 hours in Strasbourg. To the cruise director Alex’s credit, did organize 2 outbound shuttles and 2 return shuttles to a tour bus area within a 20 minute walk to the city center and the Christmas markets on the night between day 6 and 7. It was a very nice evening, even if organized on the fly, with many people from the ship taking advantage of the opportunity. What happened next was yet another failure by Scenic. This was supposed to be the official day in Strasbourg, the home of Christmas markets for Europe. Cruise director Alex explained that because traffic can be bad on the Rhine and some locks can cause delays up to 8 hours, the ship was going to relocate the night between day 6 and day 7. Last I checked, Scenic should know this and not be “surprised” by traffic on the Rhine. So, the results were brutal. By moving the ship, we got on the bus on day 7, spent just over an hour and a half being driven back to Strasbourg. During the drive, the guide said, “Oh, and if we get there before 11, we can go inside the Cathedral.” What time did we arrive? Just after 10. But where we were parked was a good 45 minute walk, if you are fit, to get to the cathedral, which is the center of the markets. The group my wife and I were walking with was chosen specifically as the “slow group” due to the age and mobility of many of the guests. Despite this designation, the guide kept walking too fast, leaving many of the group far behind. At one point, I hustled two blocks to find her, passing many people in our group. I caught up with her and said in French, English, and Spanish that she was going way, way too fast for her group. She said she will slow down, but by the time I got back to me wife, the guide was a ghost. We were to told to meet back at the clock in front of the post office in the center square, opposite of the cathedral at 12.10 exactly or risk missing the bus back to the ship. By the time most people arrived at the cathedral, it was essentially 11 am….so is 1 hour and 10 minutes what you can realistically call a Christmas market visit for Strasbourg? The pickup point for the bus back to the ship was slightly closer and took just over a half hour to walk to in order to board the buses back to the ship. So, we spent 3 hours in bus time, maybe an hour and a half to “see” Strasbourg Christmas market before getting back on the boat. In short, what Scenic advertises as possible for a Christmas market cruise does not reflect reality. The amount of time spent in these markets is a pittance compared to the sales pitch of your cruise. It’s an exercise in misrepresentation. Lastly, and I know I write this from US perspective, Scenic does not advise clients about a reasonable level of physical fitness / agility that will be required in order to enjoy their touring opportunities. The crew tried to make some accommodations but they clearly can’t fix what is on shore. Scenic Cruises has a duty to advise people about mobility issues they might face in order to make an informed purchase decision. The so called day in Strasbourg brought this issue into the sharpest of focus, although the other days were failures too. And even without mobility issues, the possible time to spend in these cities in markets were negligible compared to the way Scenic markets these tours. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
This adventure was over the top. The staff was excellent in serving the guests. Every detail of the trip was superbly executed. I would do it again. The shore excursions were well plans and guided for specific group levels. Free time for ... Read More
This adventure was over the top. The staff was excellent in serving the guests. Every detail of the trip was superbly executed. I would do it again. The shore excursions were well plans and guided for specific group levels. Free time for shopping was giving usually at the end of each shore excursion. Meals on ship were great, service great, and the food was great. There was always a good variety to choose from at breakfast, lunch , and dinner. The evening meals were a bit more formal although dress wasn’t required. The whole cruise was a very relaxed atmosphere. This was my third trip to Europe it my first on a European river cruise. I would highly recommend to extend the trip either before, after the cruise or do both. By doing this you would add much more to your adventure. Again, I would definitely go again with Viking. And the Eir is one of their best by far. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
My husband and I celebrated our 40th Wedding Anniversary in August, 2019. Taking a look at our bucket list in 2018 it was decided to take a River Cruise and booked Emerald, mainly due to comments from reviews and chatting to others that ... Read More
My husband and I celebrated our 40th Wedding Anniversary in August, 2019. Taking a look at our bucket list in 2018 it was decided to take a River Cruise and booked Emerald, mainly due to comments from reviews and chatting to others that have taken this type of a cruise. We absolutely loved it. Check in was incredibly stress free. We arrived several hours before departure, absolutely not a problem, checked in, our room was ready, went to the lounge area where they had food and beverages available. As other guests arrived, you felt really comfortable chatting and getting to know each other as we were going to be together for 7 days. The staff on our cruise we’re amazing. Always a hello, can I help you with something. Chatted with you for a few moments. If there was anything you required you just had to ask and they did there best to make you happy. The meals were delicious. Buffet for breakfast and lunch. Different choices everyday. Dinner, generally several options to choose from. If the items of the day were not something you desired, there were more choices on the menu to choose from. My husband and I received an awesome anniversary cake. Our room was beautiful. #307. Quiet, comfortable bed, lots of storage area to remove your clothes from the suitcase. We had a lovely balcony. Everyday there was a different excursion possibly two. Very well organized. Mostly mid morning. The river was very calm and quiet. Stunning views, castles, small towns. Michael, the cruise director, explained everything thoroughly the day before. We were so fortunate, no water level issues. Absolutely loved going through all the Locke’s. Thank you to the staff on the Emerald Sky for such a wonderful experience. It was sad to leave on the last day as you meet so many wonderful people. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
Background Info: I chose the itinerary because I wanted to see more of the British Isles. My Celebrity tier level was Elite, but I had no idea about how far I was from attaining Elite Plus or Zenith tier status. This cruise was my 9th ... Read More
Background Info: I chose the itinerary because I wanted to see more of the British Isles. My Celebrity tier level was Elite, but I had no idea about how far I was from attaining Elite Plus or Zenith tier status. This cruise was my 9th aboard Celebrity. Hotel Information: I stayed one night at the Amsterdam Movenpick CIty Centre, because it was extremely close to the pier, e.g., less than a block away. The room was nice, with a great bathroom, shower (no tub), comfortable beds, and a nice TV. Because I was tired from the overnight flight from North America (United to IAD to Toronto, Air Canada from Toronto to AMS), I decided to take my dinner via room service. The breakfast buffet was good, but it had the usual bottleneck of the omelet station holding up the line. A bell person took my bags except fo the carryons, and took them to the lobby for shipment to the ship that morning. Check-in and check-out were a breeze. Embarkation: Embarkation was also a breeze, but if you're mobility challenged as I was--I was still recovering from neurosurgery on my spine and needed a walker or a cane to get by--I could not see where the disabled assistance desk was--a point I was going to make to a staff member who criticized me for standing in line but who needed w/c assistance to board the ship. Nonetheless, I accepted the proffered wheelchair to board the ship after checking in, and the person who wheeled me aboard advised me that my Aqua Class cabin on Deck 12 was not yet ready for occupancy so he parked me in the Library until that time came. I walked carefully to my cabin, 2147, and noticed that the key card slot had been covered with a scanner that read your key card to open the door. Nice touch, Celebrity! Service: As anybody who stays in Aqua Class cabins--which was new for me, because I usually book Concierge Class cabins--can tell you, one perk is a dining room devoted to Aqua Class guests. It's called Blu on Deck 5 Aft, and opposite Qsine, and right angles to Tuscan Grille. Don't be fooled by deck plans: Blu is larger than it looks. I mentioned earlier my problem with mobility, which was aggravated by the absence of my walker from the baggage compartment of the Air Canada plane I took from Toronto to AMS. I needed help to track it down and decided to make friends with a Guest Services person named Keith (I think that's his name). Those reviewers who say that Guest Services staffers are lousy had never met Keith, who worked w/me to track down the walker. Turned out that the walker had been flown to AMS on embarkation day, but there was no time to get it to the ship before it sailed, and it will be flown to another airport in a few days. Keith made time in his busy schedule to call me in my cabin to update me on the walker's whereabouts. Finally, three days later in Invergordon, Scotland, my walker magically appeared outside my cabin door! Thank you, Keith! Dining: I mentioned that Aqua Class guests have access to a dedicated dining room called Blu. The room is very nicely decorated, with a giant white rose on a panel. There are two, four, and six-top tables, along with eight to 10 person circular tables. I usually sat at a four-top table behind the hostess stand. The hostesses were very nice ladies, and the wait staff were great, too. The restaurant is dedicated to healthy eating using smaller portions than what you get in the MDR. I also ate in the Lawn Club Grille and the Tuscan Grille. I ate at the former establishment on the first night after the ship sailed from Amsterdam. The temperature had declined to around 50s F, and the restaurant thoughtfully provided warm blankets to ward off the chill. As anyone who has dined at the Lawn Club Grille, it's a place where people can make their own flatbread pizza and cook their own steaks at the grills. But I never saw anybody serving as their own grill meister at the fire that night--perhaps because they were exhausted from the flights and embarkation? Come hungry to this restaurant, because you get a lot of food for the for-free charge of $45/person: A starter includes the aforementioned flatbread pizza, salad, followed by two entrees--a cut of beef (I had ribeye and grilled shrimps, shareable sides (baked potato) and mac 'n cheese. You also get a choice of beverages (I had San Pelligrino sparkling water and red wine), and a dessert. In addition to the Lawn Club Grille, I also ate at the Tuscan Grille on Deck 5 Aft. This is a steakhouse that you usually find in the Tuscany region of Italy, and in Florence. You really need to come hungry when you dine here, because you eat a lot of food, including soup, salad, pasta, a main course, and dessert. The wine and the water always flow, and your glass is seldom empty. Service here, as with Blu and Lawn Club Grille was excellent. Entertainment: I had two sources of entertainment. One was my nightly visits to the Fortunes Casino where I played the penny slots. The other was my increased association with my Celebrity Roll Call group of folks I had met via the forum posts, followed by the Sailaway party at the Sunset Bar, Deck 15 Aft, and then two days later at the Meet and Greet on the first Sea Day. That event was followed by a Battle of the Sexes Slot Tournament with dollar machines. I didn't do that well on the machine that we used, which is was a good reason why I prefer penny slots: better bang for the buck. A third source of entertainment was occasional visits to the iLife Mac lounge on Deck 6, midship. One reason I chose Reflection as the ship to do this itinerary was that the iLife lounge had iMacs rather than MacBooks for guests use. I use an iMac at home, so I was pleased to see that Reflection was similarly equipped. I chose the Reflection for a '13 cruise of the Med for this reason, too. Ports and Shore Excursions: Dover, England: This was the first port of call, and I had booked a Vintage Train Ride that included a Cream Tea snack aboard the train. Because of my mobility issue--I was still without my walker-the guide was willing to push me to the train platform, and I boarded the train car. As I'm not a hot tea drinker, I asked the wait staff if they had any other beverages, and sure enough they did--a Capri juice was available. So I drank that and ate the scones and other items on the table. The train trip ended nearly an hour later, and I was again taken in a wheelchair to our bus to continue the ride through Kent and back to the pier. Another staff person was available to push me through embarkation; and then things hit me like a ton of bricks: I had forgotten to tip the guide and the pushers! Throughout the day, the weather was either rainy or very cloudy. Invergordon, Scotland: Throughout the past year I had anticipated visiting Scotland, the homeland of bag pipes and poet Robert Burns. Sadly, though, my visit was not to be: I had barely reached the bus when my feet froze and I nearly fell to the pavement. After climbing the bus steps to my seat, the guide advised me that she couldn't take responsibility for me as a mobility challenged person. I replied about what she recommended, and she said that I have to leave the tour and return to the ship. This excursion would be cancelled for me, and my money refunded. I was taken back aboard ship via wheelchair and escorted to the Medical Center for examination by a ship's doctor. A few hours sleep later, I found my walker out in the hallway, and took it inside. Hallelujah! Greenock, Scotland: Because of continuing mobility issues that were relieved mostly by the miraculous return of my walker, I still missed the opportunity to visit Scotland, and to buy my Mom's driver her promised Clan Campbell scarf. Belfast, Northern Ireland: Like a bear awakening from his hibernation in his den, I was able to take myself on an excursion that visited the Titanic Experience in Belfast. This museum focused more on the construction of that ill-fated liner and the aftermath following the ship's sinking. One interesting portion of the visit was a gantry crane ride that showed how the ship was constructed--very Disney-like ride. Fortunately, the weather cooperated by sunny skies and slightly warm temperatures. Liverpool, England: I had booked a Cruise Critic Roll Call shore excursion earlier this year that focused on the Beatles. The tour operator was called Mop Top, and they included a cute tote bag w/water and an apple. It was a privately-arranged tour that also included a fish-and-chips pub lunch with beer. There were two vans with a total of 20+ Roll Call members on the tour. I had advised the tour operator that I had a walker that collapsed, and they were able to accommodate me. The tour took us all over Liverpool, visiting various places where band members grew up, started playing their songs, and where some songs' lyrics mentioned various places like Penny Lane and Strawberry Fields, we exited the vans and had brief walks to the locations. One such location had a small model of the Yellow Submarine outside a souvenir shop. I entered the retailer and bought a couple items. I should mention here that "Yellow Submarine" was one of my fave Beatles songs. After a couple more stops including one that showed us Paul McCartney's former home on very nice street, we then returned to the city center and parked near the pub that served us the fish-and-chips lunch. It was very good, considering that I seldom eat fried fish because of the hidden bones I expect to encounter. The chips--fries to us Yanks--were good, too, made tangy with sprinkle of Heinz Malt Vinegar. Beer was great, too. Sated with food, we walked back to the van for some more touring of Liverpool and a return to the ship. I should also mention here that the cruise line offered a shuttle service for people who had difficulty walking on the inclined plank down to the pier. I didn't know about the shuttle until some security staff members called out to me and told me that a shuttle van was available to take me to the plaza to meet the vans and the guides. I used the shuttle to return to the pier later that day. Dublin, Republic of Ireland: I was too tired from the Liverpool excursion the previous day and advised the shore excursion and Guest Relations crew not to expect my appearance at the theater to get my bus #. The tour I had booked was a three hour visit to the Guinness Brewery in Dublin. C'est-la-vie on my part to miss this opportunity to visit one of my fave beer style brewery. Cobh (Cork), Republic of Ireland: This tour primarily visited a city called Kinsale and Blarney Castle, with time-out for a nice lunch that included Irish music and an Irish dancing demonstration. At one point, we got out of the bus and looked at the harbor for Kinsale, and the guide, whose name was Annie took my mug shot. Then we went to Kinsale for a walkabout and returned to the coach. On the way to lunch, Annie talked a lot about what we would be eating and experiencing during the meal, and received a hearty consensus for leaving the meal in mid-dessert so that we could arrive at Blarney Castle. I mentioned to Annie that I had no intention of climbing a whole lot of stairs and then going upside down to kiss the stone. She advised me that was OK and suggested visiting the Blarney Irish store instead. After the tour members exited the coach, I had to visit the Men's room and then found the shop, which billed itself as "the world's largest Irish store." I bought a nice gold men's ring and looked around at other merchandise such as sweaters and tweed jackets. Not knowing how my size translated into Irish sizes prevented me from buying these garments. Not to worry, because I didn't hav the room in my suitcase to accommodate these clothing items anyway. After sitting awhile in the seating area outside the shop, I returned w/the other tour members to board the bus. After counting the tour members, we set off to return to Cobh via Cork. Annie talked a lot about Irish schooling, the economy, politics, etc. I asked her what Jews did for worshipping in a country filled with churches, and she replied that there were synagogues for Jews, but not a lot of shuls. We returned to the pier and I worked my way up the steep gangway w/my walker. I was exhausted by the full day's touring, and decided to do a room service dinner instead of dining at Blu. Because we were docked there overnight, the casino would be closed for business that evening. No problemo, I would entertainment myself by watching HGTV on the telly in my cabin. The next morning I was called by a member of my roll call group telling me that they were waiting for me. I advised her that I was too tired from my ship excursion to join them, and to go without me. Instead, I visited the Solarium Pool, one of my favorite parts of the ship, and one I wished I had visited sooner except for all the excursions and my mobility issue. The ship sailed promptly at 4 PM from the dock enroute to Amsterdam. That evening was formal night, something I failed to note in the newsletter. I didn't care, so I went dressed casually for dinner at Blu and then to the casino for more pleasurable pain. Sea Day 3: The ship was enroute to Amsterdam, and I spent the day relaxing and packing for home. Disembarkation: I wanted to do disembarkation using the wheelchairs, but the staffers were thin on the ground for this duty. Instead I took my walker and got in line for disembarking the ship. Because I had transfers to the airport, my luggage was tagged, taken to the hold on the last night of the cruise, unloaded and placed aboard trucks that would be unloaded at the airport and claimed by the guests. I have to mention here that the gangway leading to the luggage reclamation area in the terminal is a very long walk, even with a walker. The bus trip to the airport was uneventful, but then the driver seemed to get lost inside the perimeter; either that or he knew where he was going and was "running out the clock" to help the truck crews with the time to unload their vehicles of unclaimed luggage. I also have to advise fellow guests that AMS airport is a madhouse, especially if you're mobility challenged. Fortunately, I was serviced by two people who knew how to navigate the airport and were able to get me to where I needed to go. That said, service in the wheelchair waiting area was also slow, and I decided to walk to my gate. Because my walker was checked to IAD, I couldn't use it to get to the gate. I was offered and accepted the help of two kind people who not only took one of my carryons w/her as we transversed the airport via the moving sidewalks, but one of her friends also got me a free cart. I thanked them for their great assistance, and found my gate. Then I visited the magazine stand nearby and got snacks before my first flight boarded. That flight was to Frankfurt, Germany, an airport I had a bad experience with nearly 20 years ago. Fortunately, I had help this time around with a special services staff member who took me and some folks who needed help to get to our gates. I reached the gate just in time for boarding and the flight attendants showed me my first class seat. Wow, first class seating! An experience worth writing home about--but I'm doing it here in this review! Summary: I loved the cruise despite my fish-out-of-water experience as a recovering surgery patient and a near-disastrous absence of my beloved walker. I was thwarted from visiting Scotland and Dublin, but was able to visit Liverpool, Belfast, and the area around Southern Ireland. I made some friends from the Roll Call group, and will make some more friends from the Coral Princess Roll Call group for that trip this coming February. I liked dining in Blu, which took me away from the MDR. I continue to like dining at the Lawn Club Grille, the Ocean View Cafe, and the Tuscan Grill. I liked playing at the casino and drinking the wines I had ordered. Lastly, I gave Guest Services staff members a shout out for acting like a bloodhound to track down and deliver my walker to me at Invergordon, Scotland. Would I do Aqua Class again? Maybe, but preferably with a lady friend to be my dining companion. Sitting by myself in Blu is depressing and takes away the pleasure of being w/nice table-mates in the MDR. Note to other travelers: I had booked my flights using a special service called SkyLux, which offers Business Class flights at a deep discount. I heartedly recommend them if you don't want to pay crazy fares sit in Business Class seats. You will only find these kind of seats on international flights but not on domestic flights. I found the Business Class seat experience a great one, with reclining seats, great food and beverages, and great seat entertainment. Ditto for the first class seat I had aboard my homeward bound flight aboard Lufthansa from FRA. Lastly, if you're mobility challenged, please accept whatever assistance is available to you, especially in foreign airports. But make time for them because on some days like Sundays, the staff available for the assistance might be rather thin. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
Not everything about this cruise was abjectly awful. The food and service in Pinnacle Grill was good. Annette, who led the America's Test Kitchen demos, was very good. The itinerary was fairly rare. But a lot of stuff went wrong. ... Read More
Not everything about this cruise was abjectly awful. The food and service in Pinnacle Grill was good. Annette, who led the America's Test Kitchen demos, was very good. The itinerary was fairly rare. But a lot of stuff went wrong. Aside from Pinnacle Grill, the food was fit for a King. As in "Here King! Here boy! Good boy!" Food is subjective but food temperature and consistency are not. And they couldn't get the basics right on temperature and consistency. In eight dining room appearances, my wife never got what she ordered on the first try once. The Lanai room was clean, but the good points stopped there. The Lanai door did not work and was propped open or closed with wood. We could not control the stateroom temperature. This could not be fixed. The toilet clogged frequently. Passenger internet was knocked out for a week in/around Spitsbergen. Some internet worked of course, as the daily mini-newspapers kept appearing, just not for pax. A $50 credit was belatedly offered...a decent deal for those who bought the cheaper packages, but cold comfort to those who bought the more expensive/multi-device ones. The itinerary was clumsy, with too little time in too many ports. Putting Heimaey on the list of ports was ridiculous: at the best of times, the ship cannot approach the shallow harbour so it's a 35-minute tender ride to shore. These were not the best of times: It was not safe to put the tenders out so we skipped it, burning a day we could have been elsewhere. This was supposed to be an EXC cruise and after reading about the biologists and geologists brought on for the Southerly cruises we expected a treat. Instead our "expert" was a drowsy Aussie who had never been to this part of the world. His "expertise" was reading us Wikipedia. Easy enough to skip his talks, but his mumblings were blared on the outside decks, likely scaring away what little wildlife there was. They ran out of 2/3 of the wines in our package (Cellar #2). Servers eager/kind but hopelessly overworked The thermal package bought pre cruise was a grimy hot tub, grimy sauna, and six heated loungers. Layout unsuitable for this wheelchair user. Guest Services to their credit cheerfully gave Day 1 refund. We would only travel HAL again if, factoring in price, it was still a good deal after factoring in the $39pp it costs to eat in Pinnacle Grill nightly in a full balcony with working balcony door. The auto-itinerary says we were on a 34 day cruise but it was 20 days only, disembarking Aug 4. Mostly Spitsbergen and Iceland, with a stop in Norway Proper and Scotland bookending. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
The ship it was built in 2012 and it still looked brand new, our cabin was spacious and well equipped. We arrived on 12 July 2019 and checked into the Movenpick Hotel, Amsterdam City Center, the next morning to Breakfast and finally ... Read More
The ship it was built in 2012 and it still looked brand new, our cabin was spacious and well equipped. We arrived on 12 July 2019 and checked into the Movenpick Hotel, Amsterdam City Center, the next morning to Breakfast and finally closed up all our bags ready to board the Avalon Vista to get settled. We had breakfast and prep for our Amsterdam Canal Cruse plus a walking tour, every day there was tours to a lot of the sights. The meals that were provided were very delicious, for those that didn't want a large meal there was a small were served in the Panorama Lounge, it was also the location for all the briefings for the next day’s activities and music/dancing. Each day was filled with tours provided by the cruise lines or optional fee. There were never wants for service because what you might want it was provided. The ports and shore excursions were very well arranged and informative. We know that it takes a lot of planning but the only disappointment was the day of disembarkment from the ship would we would like a mini tour of Basel. This was our first trip on a long ship but it won't be our last because we truly enjoyed it. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
What an incredible experience from Amsterdam to Prague. We saw so much of Europe. The staff was phenomenal and top notch all the way. The food was exquisite. If you had any food issues they were taken care of. The always had a chef to make ... Read More
What an incredible experience from Amsterdam to Prague. We saw so much of Europe. The staff was phenomenal and top notch all the way. The food was exquisite. If you had any food issues they were taken care of. The always had a chef to make you a omelette in the morning. The hearty breakfast was great. So much fresh fruit and pastry. The staff always had great tour guides available. They were constantly aware of the tides and the weather to keep us safe. I felt so safe serene, and relaxed. The information shared on our tv in our room were very helpful along with all the audiovoxes when we went on tours. Such a professional group of folks. We always ate at the same table as our waiter and waitress were the best. They gave us insights on the foods wherever we were on the trip. The excursions were terrific. The extra offerings were great as well. I would recommend this trip to anyone who really wants to see Europe. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
I have never travelled NCL and it was a great destination and very cheap last minute price. But for the poor management, disorganization, virus outbreak and lack of basic safety measures and most of all the lack of honest report of ... Read More
I have never travelled NCL and it was a great destination and very cheap last minute price. But for the poor management, disorganization, virus outbreak and lack of basic safety measures and most of all the lack of honest report of embarkation condition and time it will take and port and shuttle condition upfront. It makes us lost our preplanned land tours and wait in line for hours for cargo port shuttle transportation schedules that does not match cruiseship embarkation time. It is no longer as cheap and a good deal as it seems.Many things regarding this shipp can only be simply put in a nutshell as if it is either at the beginning of a cruise staff training test run or the employees are so mad about the management that they strive to achieve perfect imperfections as a retaliation to work on a ship they have contract. some simple exaples are 1.5 hours into beginning of main breakfast hours. one side of the main hotwater and coffee machine is locked up. everywhere is either running out of soup bowls or plate. with management stand by busy chatting among themselves and employee standing around. Service desk often can not even be reached by phone and lines in front of the service desk will take easily half an hour many days of the week. The ship claims to have certain currency exchange and either it is closed, in time conflict with your shoretime or meal time or has no currency to exchanged. No water is served till the end of the meal Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
Sailed with AMA before, loved it! Their attention to detail is superb. This time we experienced a drought that altered our course and experience. AMA took us to 2 extra countries not on our original itinerary, made everything pleasant and ... Read More
Sailed with AMA before, loved it! Their attention to detail is superb. This time we experienced a drought that altered our course and experience. AMA took us to 2 extra countries not on our original itinerary, made everything pleasant and seamless, remained positive and upbeat, and gave us a 100% credit for a future cruise of our choosing! We were on two ships, identical accommodations. Cabins great, ships great, dining excellent, service great, entertainment and activities great, excursions fabulous, staff attentive and wonderful, embarkation, disembarkation and ship transfer went smoothly and perfectly! AMA is an outstanding company, a class act, and I will most certainly travel with them again! They outperform all of the others and are far superior! The Captain gives each lady a rose upon arrival, and by the time you get back from dinner, the rose is in a vase. The crew knows your food likes and dislikes, allergies, and every detail to make you feel comfortable. They make special occasions unforgettable and treat you with the utmost respect! Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
We chose the cruise because the dates suited our vacation and because of the destinations. We boarded in Amsterdam and did the 12 days to Rome. The ship was very nice and the crew were great. I thought the main stage entertainment ... Read More
We chose the cruise because the dates suited our vacation and because of the destinations. We boarded in Amsterdam and did the 12 days to Rome. The ship was very nice and the crew were great. I thought the main stage entertainment was a bit boring and wasn’t for us. I actually fell asleep in one of the shows, that’s how much I thought of it. The comedian Jo Little was good but her humour was lost to a lot of the Americans. One night there was an opera singer on? We didn’t go as not for us, also a saxophonist one night. I like a saxophone when it’s part of a song or a solo but not the full show. They had the blues band and they weren’t bad but one night the 2 singers didn’t come out for the last set as BOTH of them had sore throats. So the band played their instruments and tried to do a so called funny ed and he said mime act. It wasn’t funny and they did that again on another night and it still wasn’t funny. The highlight of the entertainment for us was the piano bar 2 very talented girls. I think their names were Ivy & Paulini. Thank god for them as we would have went insane of a night. They entertained us every night except for their night off. Thank you The only bar that was open after midnight was the casino. We didn’t want to go there as we don’t gamble and we don’t smoke. Speaking of smoking in the casino we walked through there on the non smoking night to find people smoking and no one stopping them. Why wasn’t there any other bars open? It was like we were school kids being sent to bed. Totally unacceptable as far as we were concerned. We did enjoy the crows nest bar of an afternoon when we were set to sail. Food was good but on our last day it was an at sea day. At lunch in the buffet it closed at 2:30pm. I asked to speak with someone about this and an officer came and I asked him why it closed and he said because it’s time too. I pointed out to him that most people on the ship us included had a later breakfast and was hoping to have a later lunch. I also asked him what lunch finished the day before and he replied 4:00pm. So why are the times inconsistent? He really couldn’t answer just saying that they were the times. We had been through there earlier and I knew what I was going to have but wasn’t hungry thinking we could eat later. There are 2 sides of the buffet nearly a mirror image each side. I asked why they couldn’t have kept one side open at least? The officer was very good to try and accomodate us by saying he would get us what we were looking for. I wanted the buffet open I knew what my protein was but wanted other things as well. He also reminded us that there was the burger and pizza bars open and we could go there. That’s what we were going to do. I give him credit he pursued us and offered to make a reservation for us in the Italian restaurant free of charge. I thanked him but declined as I was upset with what had happened and wasn’t thinking about dinner I wanted lunch. In the end I said thank you please make the reservation but no sure if we will go. We ended up taking the offer up. The cabin was great and our room stewards were fabulous. The biggest disappointment though was when we went to the port of Heulva (I think that’s what it was called). It was Sunday and we didn’t really feel like going to Saville 90 minutes each way by bus. So we thought we will stay in the port town relax wonder around see what they have. There was a free shuttle bus from the port into the city. It was on the bus that we and most of the other passengers found out that the only places in town that would be open was food and drink places. The guide on the bus told us and she was 100% correct. That’s all that was open, I couldn’t even get a souvenir not even a fridge magnet. The bus dropped us off at the “tourist information centre” where there was 1 person working and a line up of about 50 people and they ran out of maps. Why would Holland America do this? What sort of itinerary is this? Honestly absolutely ridiculous. We weren’t the only ones unhappy with this. I did the survey that they sent us and they asked could they get in touch with us to discuss our rating. I said yes but we still haven’t heard so that’s why I have put my review here Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
My husband wanted to book a cruise that would be as easy or as difficult physically as I could handle with knee surgery looming. A friend and I found everything was perfect, especially for a first time river cruise. Everything about this ... Read More
My husband wanted to book a cruise that would be as easy or as difficult physically as I could handle with knee surgery looming. A friend and I found everything was perfect, especially for a first time river cruise. Everything about this cruise went smoothly from the moment we joined up. No worries and every question was answered promptly and fully. Our disembarkation was remarkably easy as well. The ship shines, the crew from captain down to the behind the scenes people were welcoming,cheerful and pleasant. The cabin was more than adequate, beds extremely comfortable for one with a bad back and the food and bar outstanding. I could not have wished for better service. The planned shore excursions and ports of call have a lovely overview of several countries and some of their highlights, loads of information from a local guide, with shortened or modified tours (gentle walks) for those needing them. Personally, I found most of the tour very doable with a walking stick which the ship provided. As we were told at the beginning of the cruise, very little of the entertainment took place aboard ship--most was only e o the planned excursions. My husband did not accompany me on this trip, so I am going to try and get him to go next year. I certainly hope to go again several times, preferably with Avalon Waterways. I simply can't say enough good about them. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
Yes, It Can be Sweet in a Costa Suite We are recently back from a nine day Costa Mediterranea cruise to the Norwegian fjords. We typically sail HAL, Celebrity, or RCI and usually in a balcony cabin. To be honest, the reviews have kept ... Read More
Yes, It Can be Sweet in a Costa Suite We are recently back from a nine day Costa Mediterranea cruise to the Norwegian fjords. We typically sail HAL, Celebrity, or RCI and usually in a balcony cabin. To be honest, the reviews have kept me away from considering Costa. This time we were traveling with another couple and were looking for an itinerary that departed from and returned to Amsterdam. Costa fit the bill. We booked this cruise less than two months out due to a last minute change in plans. As this cruise was a few days shorter we were able to book a suite for about the same price as our balcony cabin on the other line. If you enjoy traveling to Europe and the pricing is within your budget, sailing in a Costa suite will be a very similar experience to the other lines I have mentioned. It could even be better if you don’t usually book a suite. Embarkation in Amsterdam We arrived around 12:30 and check-in took about 20 minutes. We had one family member with mobility issues so the combination of this along with priority boarding sped things along. We then took the lift up to Deck 9 for lunch in the buffet. When we arrived in our cabin an hour later our luggage had been delivered and the security video was playing on the TV in anticipation of the muster drill, which would be held before our late afternoon sail away. Cabin Our cabin was a corner aft on deck four. The layout consisted of a sofa and desk area, a dressing area with walk-in closet, the attractively tiled bathroom had dual sinks and combo tub/shower with sliding door, and the bedroom was adjacent to that with its own TV and drawer space. We found the bed comfortable. The huge balcony had two chairs with footstools as well as two loungers and small table to hold your drinks, snacks, phone etc. Décor colors in the room were a bit retro but I loved the small Murano lamps. Plenty of storage space, a safe, and frig also. The non-alcohol mini bar and bottled water are one of your amenities. Demographics No worries if you only speak English as the hard working staff were multi-lingual. Italian was the primary language followed by English, French, and German. We didn’t feel it was that tedious for announcements but you can appreciate the effort made for entertaining everyone! On this sailing there were mostly Europeans, and though many also spoke English, aside from the staff you didn’t hear a lot of English spoken among the guests. Don’t let that deter you as the daily “Diario di Bordo,” menu, and signage are also offered in multiple languages. Food & Drink I attribute our positive cruise experience to two perks included in our Costa suite amenities, the Intenditore drink package and the Medusa (suite) restaurant where suite guests can eat B-L-D. This doesn’t mean you can’t grab a burger in the buffet at lunchtime or order room service. We were able to get coffee, water, a cocktail, or glass of wine /beer anytime we wanted from the bars or at meal time in the rstaurants. We found the food in the suite restaurant to be quite good and except for a few sugary cocktails were never disappointed in our drinks. The Medusa Restaurant was for suite guests but could also be purchased as a dinner package for other guests, though suite guests would get priority seating. We usually arrived for dinner around seven and never had to wait or make a reservation. There are no other specialty restaurants on this ship. The space held about 100 people and had a variety of table configurations. Each night featured choices from a particular region of Italy. A copy of the Medusa menu was delivered ahead of time to your room. It was a four course meal but that can be filling so we started to order two of the “primi” courses for the table to share among the four of us and that worked well. Food is always subjective but the consensus among us was that the seafood, pork, or lamb were always very good. The steak, which was an option every night, was not so tender. There was also a “Chef’s Choice” menu option that you could order or swap around for some of the a la carte choices. Wine by the glass was part of our drink package and there were a few that we particularly liked. We often would pair a different wine with a different course so a benefit of “by the glass.” There were also vegetarian food options offered each night. Sufficient staff made it a pleasure to have a relaxing dinner. We usually chose the Medusa restaurant for breakfast and one day for lunch. There is a cold buffet station as well as a pastry table in addition to ordering hot choices off the menu. The food is quite good but hope you aren’t in a hurry! The hold up appeared to be on the kitchen end not in the dining room. We did have lunch in the Perla del Lago buffet restaurant a few times. My favorite was to select ham, cheese, and choice of bread and build your own sandwich. There were also a variety of salads, pizza, and burgers. Lunch is served noon-2:30 pm. Between 4-5 pm the Perla del Lago opens for “La Merenda” or afternoon snack. You will find people cueing up for little sandwiches and pastries. If you aren’t eating in the Medusa restaurant for dinner, the Main Dining Room seating is either 6:15 pm or 9pm. Between 7pm-1am you can purchase a higher quality burger or pizza in the designated section of the La Perla buffet restaurant. The informal dinner option is in the buffet restaurant on deck 9 between 7-8:30pm. Crepes are also available for purchase between 10pm-midnight. The bars are open late, midnight and some beyond. A lot of the reviews I’ve read are filled with complaints about the food, paying for water, not having coffee available etc. I think a “must do” item is to clip the sunshine yellow “Buon Appetito” guide in the daily “Diario” and keep it handy until you sort where and when the meals are available. There are many options but limited timing so you don’t want to be disappointed. Having the premium drink package included avoided really simplified things. Life on Board If you have cruised before you know what your expectations are. I will just mention a few things that stood out for me. We were cruising at the end of summer so you knew children would be onboard. There is the Squok Club to keep them entertained. This was also a colder climate so not everyone was in the pool and there were no chair hogs. The ship is lively. At night there were multiple venues with live music. The dance floor was actually a good size for a ship. In fact, as we were getting off a dance workshop group was getting ready to board. Drink service was adequate but they weren’t pestering you if you just wanted to sit and listen for a bit. Photographers were around taking pictures but they were less intrusive and didn’t pester you to buy. A few of ours actually came out nice and we did buy them with a package that also included the digital version. We had a minor issue with our club number and they fixed it on the spot! Room service was on time and nothing missing. Tender tickets were given out the day before saving time the day of. This is an older ship so didn’t have the specialty restaurants that are popular on newer chips. The spa had treatment rooms but not much space for relaxing around the whirlpool. The gym had a variety of equipment. The theater was nice and we went to a couple of shows which were good. We were invited to a wine tasting which was fun to do on a sea day and they even served grapes and cheese to go along. There also was a large attractive game room area that was popular with people playing board games, cards, etc. Accessibility As I mentioned earlier, a family member had mobility problems. We booked too late to get an accessible room. We booked a Panoramic Suite and were able to accommodate both a mobility scooter from Special Needs at Sea, wheelchair, and walker in the cabin. As the tub was fairly deep, we inquired with our attendant if they had a step to assist getting in the tub. The next day we were given a two foot long step that served the purpose. Getting ashore on the two tender stops was also possible with the help of the crew lifting the wheelchair onto the tender and our fortune of having calm seas. Ports-our intent was for relaxing port visits rather than action packed Bergen-able to get ashore with a mobility scooter; docked in Jekteviken close enough to town to walk to cable car which also has a lift and allows for access to the top where there are shops and a café. Olden-Tender, very scenic; spent time taking photos Andalsnes-able to go onshore with mobility scooter. This was also scenic but not a lot to do unless you plan an excursion. We walked along the lake; The train station is very near where the ship docked and is accessible for wheelchairs and smaller mobility scooters. Check the timetable for return. Geiranger-This was our second visit here. Able to get around with mobility scooter. Very scenic and great ice cream! Two of us walked up along the waterfall trail near where the ship is docked. Great photo ops. Look for the goats nearby! There is also a very nice artist’s studio, Geiranger Gallery, between the waterfall and the mainstreet . It is not clustered with the other tourist shops and cafes but set back a little on the left as you walk towards the fall. A nice choice of quality gifts, pottery, and glass objects. Stavanger-One of my favorite port stops; Visit the old section of town where the white houses are. We were docked nearby. The streets are quite steep so not accessible with a mobility scooter and would be difficult with a wheelchair. If you can walk up, after you visit the white houses continue to walk to Breidablikk Mansion on Eiganesveien, 40A. It is about a 25 minute walk through a beautiful neighborhood to see this well preserved home with most of the original furnishings. Your ticket will than allow you to enter many of the other small museums in town for either half price or less. Back in the town center the walkways are flat. You will find the Stavanger Cathedral here and a large shopping area. Bremerhaven-a brief stop to disembark and embark some passengers. It was a Sunday morning and rainy so stayed onboard. There was a shuttle available for €12 r/t to the center of town about 4.5 km away. Tickets must be purchased on the ship at the kiosks or Hospitality Desk. Maximum waiting time was 40 minutes. Disembarkation- Your cabin must be vacated by 8am but you could still enjoy breakfast at the appropriate restaurant, in our case the Medusa Restaurant. There was also a hand luggage deposit for you to use so you didn’t have to bring everything with you to breakfast. After breakfast we left the ship and retrieved our luggage in the Customs Hall in Amsterdam. In summary, I have to say that I was pleasantly surprised with my Costa Cruise experience. It definitely was value for money in this category. Their shorter itineraries to different ports could work for us and I am interested to try some of their newer, larger ships. But, I would probably only do so with the Intenditore Drink Package, access to a smaller restaurant venue and not the MDR……fingers crossed for a sweet, suite deal! Read Less
Sail Date August 2018
I love the Scenic river cruise line. This was my 4th trip with them. I particularly like having everything included such as: all tips even for shore excursions, mini bar, cocktails, coffee & tea anytime, special shore Enrichment ... Read More
I love the Scenic river cruise line. This was my 4th trip with them. I particularly like having everything included such as: all tips even for shore excursions, mini bar, cocktails, coffee & tea anytime, special shore Enrichment events like a concert or Medieval dinner in a castle just for us. You can have an early or late breakfast and there is always something to eat between meals. There is a gentle walk excursion for those that have some mobility issues. This was great for those with walkers, canes etc. I also loved the opportunity to have a laundry bag stuffed full of dirty clothes laundered free of charge once during the trip as it was very hot and we changed clothes a few times a day. A waiter even remembered me and my first name from a cruise I took 2 years ago. Pretty impressive!! The crew on the Jade went out of their way to make our cruise a true hassle free excursion. In short, "What you pay before you start is all you pay". Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
We chose this cruise because it went above the Arctic Circle and in fact, the ship gave us a certificate confirming such. We had a handicapped cabin which worked out great...a bit larger than most to accommodate a wheel chair. Highlight ... Read More
We chose this cruise because it went above the Arctic Circle and in fact, the ship gave us a certificate confirming such. We had a handicapped cabin which worked out great...a bit larger than most to accommodate a wheel chair. Highlight was Honningsvag and North Cape. Holland only does this cruise a few times a summer so I would hold out for it. Next year cruise will be on the New Statendam. Dining room food was good and so was service..just wish it was open more often at lunch. Shows...some good..some not so good but what do you expect on a 2 week cruise? They can't knock out of the park every night. Cabin attendants were helpful and attentive but not overbearing. We especially enjoyed the Lincoln Center Stage with classical music nightly. Holland was not as helpful with shore excursions telling us we could not go on any due to our disability status. My advice...many things are possible if you pursue it on your own. We did very successfully. Heard other passengers lament the fact that Holland's ships no longer have a library and we agree that would be nice. All in all though, an excellent trip which we recommend Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
After cruising the Seine two years ago, we decided to make the Rhine our next cruise. Viking never disappoints. From the moment you step off your flight ( with Viking having great airline prices too) from the time you leave, every staff ... Read More
After cruising the Seine two years ago, we decided to make the Rhine our next cruise. Viking never disappoints. From the moment you step off your flight ( with Viking having great airline prices too) from the time you leave, every staff member makes you feel at home. We loved every port and excursion. We added a dinner in Rudesheim excursion and it was just what we wanted to be a part of. It was a fun night in a small German town with lots of music, authentic food and drink. I was not in my best walking form so the day I chose not to leave the ship was still enjoyable. The staff made sure I was comfortable, and well fed as well. We extended our stay in Lucerne. If you can, take the Pearls of Switzerland excursion. It was a day packed with fun and adventure ending with a wonderful fondue dinner. We are looking at the Danube next as well as taking a Viking ocean cruise We will not look at other riverboats as Viking has it all for us. Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
Royal Caribbean used to be a top cruise line...no longer...this cruise has been Carnivalised...no lobester night unless you pay extra...movies in your room? Only if you want to pay $13.00 a movie, not first run...Happy hour on drinks? On a ... Read More
Royal Caribbean used to be a top cruise line...no longer...this cruise has been Carnivalised...no lobester night unless you pay extra...movies in your room? Only if you want to pay $13.00 a movie, not first run...Happy hour on drinks? On a twelve day cruise... two hapy hours for only two hours and only on two kinds if drinks...too bad... the staff was great but the lines seem to go out of the way to nickel and dime the passengers...All the items in the shop were from the Baltic cruise...Nothing from the British Isles...its like this cruise was just a filler between Baltic cruises.Horrible televison programing...The wait staff on the ship were very helpful in all ways from the cabin steward to the dining room waiter and his assistant. As a cigar smoker, I was dissapointed that there was no longer a cigar bar on this ship and we were forced to sit outside in cold, windy weather. This was not the cruise line I remember....I won’t be back on this line. Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
Nice ,new ship.balcony stateroom pretty nice,but on the small size.cramped bathroom,not well designed,difficult to sit.shower head didnt fixed well.first and secod day,steward didnt come to clean the room untill 3p.m,we went to complain ... Read More
Nice ,new ship.balcony stateroom pretty nice,but on the small size.cramped bathroom,not well designed,difficult to sit.shower head didnt fixed well.first and secod day,steward didnt come to clean the room untill 3p.m,we went to complain and after this no problem.Molde port,I think was choosed to give expencive trips.staff in dining room pushed to order drinks,not always in good manner.But all in all nice experience,mainly because of new ,and well organized ship and crew.good port of calls,exept Molde,I think to push you expensive excursions.Super Geiranger and Bergen.embarkation and dis..well organised. Tender in Geiranger good .In dining room crew pushed you yo order drinks ,expensive.Super restaurant Tamarind!!nice experience delicious food also in dining room.In north cruises I think not to order balcony room next time.bit cold to seat.Just ocean view enough.A lot of disabled on board,somrtimes feeled like in reabilitation hospital.but its not much to do.It was world cup and they translated it at the big screen near the pool.by the way jakuzzi near the pool always occupied by children.a problem if you want to seat there Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
Just today off of a 14-day Konginsdam sailing, roundtrip Amsterdam to the North Cape of Norway (the Northernmost point on the mainland of Europe), with multiple ports of call in Norway's most spectacular fjords. Trip exceeded my ... Read More
Just today off of a 14-day Konginsdam sailing, roundtrip Amsterdam to the North Cape of Norway (the Northernmost point on the mainland of Europe), with multiple ports of call in Norway's most spectacular fjords. Trip exceeded my expectations in every respect. Ship, which is effectively brand new, looks and still feels brand new. Crew of 1,000 flawless --- remarkably, in my opinion, addressing me by name on multiple occasions starting on the very first day, even though there were 2,000 other passengers on board. Itinerary was carefully chosen to position the ship above the Arctic Circle during the summer solstice, so that there were 4 cruise days on which the sun never went down. Weather surprisingly great; seas calm. Captain Werner Timmers a delight (note: HAL is rotating captains on the Koningsdam in 2018, so your captain will be different, but Timmers was to me exceptionally likeable). Food was mostly but not always great: I had purchased the "ultimate dining package," which allows you to sample each of the ship's upsell restaurants at a (slight) discount, and i would not purchase that package again, given the comparatively unsatisfactory state of affairs in Canaletto (deck 9; worse than Olive Garden), the Culinary Arts Center (disorganized), and De Librije (avoid; overwrought). But i would highly recommend a meal in Sel de Mer (elegant, intimate french bistro on deck 2) and Tamarind (Japanese/Chinese/Vietnamese up on deck 10), where I ate 3 times, the food was so good. Cabin stewards outstanding. Cabin thoughtfully laid out with nice touches everywhere. Would happily take the same trip on the same ship in the same cabin during the same 2 weeks. The beauty of Norway's fjords cannot be described in words nor adequately captured in internet photos; you have to go and experience it first-hand, if you are able to squeeze it in to your schedule and your budget. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
This was our first experience with Viking cruises we chose the 15 day cruise through Europe vacation. The experience beginning with ease of booking - and information from my viking agent was superior. Every need was met.. greeted at ... Read More
This was our first experience with Viking cruises we chose the 15 day cruise through Europe vacation. The experience beginning with ease of booking - and information from my viking agent was superior. Every need was met.. greeted at the airport.. Quick service to the dock using purchased Viking transfers. The room was very nice with every amenity needed and the crew I can’t say enough about. All excursions choice we’re excellent Allowing for all degrees of walking abilities from strenuous too easy I highly recommend a Viking cruise experience… But be warned you will be spoiled treated like a king or queen and not want any other vacation cruise line. It has been three months since our return and we have chosen to book the Viking ocean cruise beginning in Spain during the Mediterranean. Food choices on a river cruise or superior I have no complaints about a single item went wrong !! Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
This cruise was chosen specifically because of the itinerary. It went from Amsterdam to Basel and for 11 days. Our cruise manager was Dejan Stancic and was absolutely one of the most fabulous and entertaining person! He made us smile and ... Read More
This cruise was chosen specifically because of the itinerary. It went from Amsterdam to Basel and for 11 days. Our cruise manager was Dejan Stancic and was absolutely one of the most fabulous and entertaining person! He made us smile and laugh each evening when he provided the passengers (guests) with previews and information for upcoming ports. He was very knowledgable and approachable so it was easy to ask questions of any kind that would help make your trip even better. The rest of the staff were absolutely awesome, all were friendly and smiling, we always looked forward to meals and just being anywhere on board because they made us feel like family quickly. The captain, crew and hotel manager were also very friendly. What a great time we had! The ports were fabulous (read the itinerary in the brochure) and there also was a few relaxing mornings on the ship so we did not need to rush as much like the seven day cruises would be. Of course, the views on the Rhine and Moselle were gorgeous and seeing the castles dotting the hillsides (as Dajan said, you would be seeing so many on each side of the ship that you would begin to feel like a ping pong ball!) This was truly a fairytale experience! The ship was beautiful, the cabins spotless and embarkation/disembarkation experiences were seamless. Thank you AMAPRIMA for this wonderful and memorable cruise!!! Loved every second of it. Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
It was on a river , my wife has a motion sickness problem. The itinerary looked interesting. My wife uses an electric trike to travel any distance but it is not needed on board. The excursions all had a gentle options so we assumed ... Read More
It was on a river , my wife has a motion sickness problem. The itinerary looked interesting. My wife uses an electric trike to travel any distance but it is not needed on board. The excursions all had a gentle options so we assumed we could cope. Unfortunately mainland Europe has not progress as far the UK and north america in disability access. Another problem was the boat was frequently double or triple parked so we had to get to the top deck, no lift to that and then go up and down over one or two other boats. The crew helped as much as they could but it was still a problem. No idea why they did that there seemed to be unused berths in places. My biggest problem was the quality of the shore excursions the guides seemed to pitch the talks at a very superficial level. The only ones I enjoyed were the tasting options when the guide or subject expert had the time to talk to us as adults. Of the other guests two thirds had booked as a group this appeared to limit social interaction. Given the price I ticked the luxury box and marked accordingly. Enrichment activities not sure any were offered. They had a resident pianist, bland, inoffensive and quiet. Fitness room had a treadmill, 2 bikes and a high tech multi-gym with virtually no instructions, I would have preferred an elliptical machine instead of the second bike. Never saw any of the machines in use. One guide I found really irritating referred repeatedly to the visit the Royal Air Force made to her town on 16/4/1945 and yes we did flatten most of it but we were at war. Very difficult to avoid asking what here parents did in the war years. Another tour the guide sent most time talking about basket ball (ex pro 7ft 2inch) of no interest to me and not what I paid for. We found the almost total absence of both bird life and fishermen along the rivers interesting makes you wounder what is in the water. In-spite of the crew and the food being excellent we would not repeat this or try another cruise. Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
We were looking for a cruise around X'mas time and the New Year, so the cmv Magellan to Madeira Cape Verdes Canary Iles seemed OK. We embarked in Amsterdam and soon found out that the average age of the passengers was about 80.Lots ... Read More
We were looking for a cruise around X'mas time and the New Year, so the cmv Magellan to Madeira Cape Verdes Canary Iles seemed OK. We embarked in Amsterdam and soon found out that the average age of the passengers was about 80.Lots of wheel chairs, electric scoot mobiles with beep sound signals etc. The cabin was OK and the steward was exellent. Only the airco smell in the cabin was like a smokers room that lasted for 22 days. The ship is old and very unstable it rolls fiercely in waves of only 3- 4 m. Lots of old passengers fell of stairs and in cabins. The hospital and the Servian female doctor was very busy with all the coughing guests. The pneumonia germs were spread throughout the ship by the apparently not well filtered or sanitary cleaned airco air. Twice a rescue helicopter had to collect sick passengers. The kitchen chef was Indian as well as most of the cooks. The soup was every day the same only a different name and colour. At breakfast the bacon was dried out because it was baked in the middle of the night. The entertainment girls and boys came from the former East block . The quality was below the standard one would like to experience on a X'mas cruise. The excursions were acceptable except for the waiting time for diasbled passengers that were coming while they could hardly walk up a stair. The final bill showed a creditcard charge of GBP 141 for payment of an amount of GBP 1690 , a small charge for paying by credit card we would accept but this is robbery. In short we do not recommend this ship or cruise line.Our experience with the HAL is much better. Read Less
Sail Date December 2017
Too much walking on uneven surfaces for a tourist with a cane. The worst part was the steep ramps in and out of the ship up the river bank to the shore. Then, I could only handle half of the windmill tour, and skipped the castle on the ... Read More
Too much walking on uneven surfaces for a tourist with a cane. The worst part was the steep ramps in and out of the ship up the river bank to the shore. Then, I could only handle half of the windmill tour, and skipped the castle on the hill completely by taking the funicular at my own expense down to street level immediately. Had a great time at the Xmas Fair there, and at all the other Xmas Fairs and Medieval Cathedrals even though I'm not Christian. The Black Forest covered in white snow was beautiful, and the Audie Murphy battlefield excursion was incredibly memorable. The wifi and the use of public shipboard computers was a waste of time. Poor satellite reception meant slow turnaround times if any at all. If you have time, you're better off using wifi at a cafe on shore. The food was always delicious, but seating is not reserved. The dining room does not seat the entire passenger contingent so we had to eat the final night farewell banquet alone in the upper deck breakfast nook. Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
osta Magica 8th September to 21th. Amsterdam, Dover, Le Havre, La Coruna, Leixoes, Lisbon, Gibraltar, Malaga, Civitavecchia, Savona, Marseille. Getting on in Dover & off in Savona made this trip a lot easier for us, so many ... Read More
osta Magica 8th September to 21th. Amsterdam, Dover, Le Havre, La Coruna, Leixoes, Lisbon, Gibraltar, Malaga, Civitavecchia, Savona, Marseille. Getting on in Dover & off in Savona made this trip a lot easier for us, so many thanks to the lovely Amanda in Genoa for making this possible, she has proved more than once to be a true credit to Costa, she & her colleagues are always polite and helpful, sorting out our many needs.   Our fifth time on the Magica completing our 200 days with Costa, usual lovely cabin on deck ten, spotlessly clean and an extremely helpful room steward who soon had us settled in even help us to un-pack. Through cruise critic we had spoken to others on this trip before going, this proved to be a nice way to meet up, Adelaide & Frank from the US, Lilly & the Vagabond from Italy and our table companion's Tine & Bob gave us so much enjoyment we could not thank them enough for making this cruise special. We have become use to the crew of this ship who always go that extra step in ensuring we have everything we need, certainly better than the bigger Costa ships which seem to have lost some of the personal touches we have come to expect from our many Costa cruises. The larger ships like the Diadema do not have the same friendliness as on mid-sized ones, probably down to the huge numbers of passengers on board.  We tried, with some success two tours on this cruise, the first in Le Harve to a small fishing port on our own, mostly on the level so my walking was manageable made a nice change to be able to get off, although had to get assistance boarding coming back as tide had come in and gangway far too steep for me. Next to Oporto lovely river trip, sightseeing by coach, visit to Cathedral, major problem going back to coach up a really steep slope, however tour guide had coach brought down to us and assisted us on, really understanding driver and indeed guide, Costa should consider maybe mini-busses for the few English who often have tours cancelled, after all we have managed to use taxis in some ports.   Dining was in the Perla Diamante/Suite restaurant above main dining room aft, far too crowded now, with new club rules adding many more guests to an overcrowded room during the evening meals, with table allocation by number & two sittings, not as nice as our previous enjoyable meals there. Food was again disappointing, one day excellent even outstanding, next inedible and menus difficult to understand, no good translating to English but then using mostly Italian terms. Surely the number of plates being returned with food left raises some concerns, one evening ordered a special (lobster) which was so overcooked and tough I asked Maître D to return it to kitchen, no problem but no feedback or explanation as to why, just offer to choose something else, which was a veal medallion & really lovely.  Perhaps I should send them copies of the wonderful menus of the early 2000's  English Host Stephanie was an absolute joy, as our special member of staff she booked all our onboard requirements made us feel welcomed and visited us many times during our cruise, checking that all was okay. As we don't venture ashore much now it is so nice to chat with members of the crew who always had time to stop and enquire about our day, bar tenders, waiters, even maintenance workers on deck spoke, which to me makes a great cruise. The Magica is laid out like most ships of Costa so very easy to find way around all areas were clean, slight down side to the piano bar, no coffee now, but lovely waiter from classical bar next door brought me Cappuccinos on the hour each night with a smile. All in all still a great way to spend a couple of weeks in the sun on one of my favourite ships. Now looking forward to the Diadema at Christmas first time back on Costa for the festive season for over 10 years. Not quite the best ever Costa cruise but very close. 9/10 Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
This was our first river cruise. We boarded after 3 days in Amsterdam, which is a great city, by the way. It was well worth the extra time. We had a little trouble finding the ship as the one we were to board had been replaced by a sister ... Read More
This was our first river cruise. We boarded after 3 days in Amsterdam, which is a great city, by the way. It was well worth the extra time. We had a little trouble finding the ship as the one we were to board had been replaced by a sister ship. It was a twin, however, and offered a very similar venue and service. We were greeted with a nice drink, lunch and an easy check-in. The next couple hours were for unpacking and exploring the amenities. All was as advertised. The Emerald Sun is only about two years old, quite beautiful and offers all the modern amenities. My wife enjoyed the pool and exercise room, while I enjoyed the running track on the top deck and the sun chairs on sunny days. Over the next 15 days we found the staff to be very friendly and helpful, especially Yana who was the coordinator for all things touristy. I don't think Yana slept and was exceptional in a minor crisis when we were not able to pass under a bridge. She organized our stay in Vienna in a 5 Plus star hotel and arranged transfers, tours, meals, etc. without incident. She was exceptional to the very end.... of our trip....not us. Robert, the ship coordinator, was also very organized and always there to wave goodbye upon our departures and greet us upon our return. All of the staff were exceptional. The food was very good in my estimation. There were smorgasbord style meals for breakfast and lunch, and a gourmet meal in the evening. The staff moved meal times to accommodate our various activities and were always generous with the wine that was regional with our approximate location. The tables were placed so that those who wished to socialize could do so, and the more isolated types could isolate. There was also a more limited meal in another area for breakfast and lunch that offered peace and quiet, albeit a limited selection. I, personally, enjoyed the peace and quiet. My one complaint about the meals would be that the gourmet dinner took about two hours. I enjoy such a meal about once a week, but every night is a bit much for me. The food was of very high quality throughout. Our cabins were bright and clean with our trusty cabin keeper, Widodo, always available at any hour with a ready smile and chocolates on our pillow before bed time. I don't think any of the staff slept. The full wall of windows in our room provided a great view of the world as it flowed by, and the open air feature was wonderful on warm and sunny days. Sometime we were just happy to sit in our room and view Europe pass by, as if we were watching a travelogue. There were tours almost daily and extra tours if you wanted to pay a bit more. These were well organized and interesting with knowledgable leaders in each port. One could also opt out of an organized tour and create your own. As I do not always play well with others, on a couple of occasions I used the provided bicycles and toured villages along the route by myself, stopping for a nice coffee or local brew, feeling like one of the locals. The bikes were probably expensive but not a style I would have chosen. They did do the job however. Yana was very knowledgeable about almost everything and provided lectures on various subjects such as: coffee, facts and history about certain regions, and her end of the evening jokes weren't too bad either. Several times local entertainment was brought in to give us a taste of the local culture, such as Hungarian dancers in Budapest and an amazing violinist in Vienna. Although there were many highlights of the trip, the two that remain most outstanding in our minds was the private evening concert in Vienna in a room where Beethoven had once conducted a symphony, and the visit to a Slovakian village and the home of a Slovakian family. I came away realizing that we are all part of a world family no matter where we live. Good people are everywhere. In summary, this was an excellent experience. I would chose Emerald anytime, and would promote Yana to CEO. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017

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