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153 Budapest to Europe - River Cruise Reviews

As a 40th anniversary trip. We made our own arrangements to get to Budapest and to return home from Amsterdam. We were told by Scenic UK to phone the Jade (which should have been our ship) to find her dock on the Monday. While out walking ... Read More
As a 40th anniversary trip. We made our own arrangements to get to Budapest and to return home from Amsterdam. We were told by Scenic UK to phone the Jade (which should have been our ship) to find her dock on the Monday. While out walking in Budapest on Sunday we saw the Scenic Jasper to ask if they knew where Jade was docking? The lady at reception looked bemused and said Jade is not due but made a phone call to check and said she was not due....she then asked for our name, then said we were due to board her ship Jasper the following day!! The ship had changed due to low water levels but we had not been notified. We complained via our travel agent about the lack of communication and eventually had a phone call from Scenic UK, the gist being that we had sorted ourselves out so what was the problem! Not exactly 5* customer service, especially as it cost us £14k+. Similar responses after the cruise...no real apology just excuses that HQ in Australia had the information but UK did not! Also our cabin was being changed so UK were waiting for detail....as far as I could tell, we had the same grade of cabin we had booked? They probably knew a week earlier of the ship change as that was probably the location where the ship change probably took place but they do not like to publish that!! We heard the return cruise from Amsterdam was likely to have 3 ship changes! Having said all that, we were on the Jasper for 1 week from Monday 23 July then met up with the Jade on Sunday 29 July. Both ships were excellent and the Cruise Director Cathy (Kathy) and the rest of the crew were all hardworking and friendly with great service. Ship change was so slick although all the suitcases had to be repacked and they were taken from our cabin and were waiting for us on the Jade!! We just went on our tour for the day and were taken back to the Jade! Excursions were well-organised and included more than usually described. Would happily recommend the cruise and ships but not the back-up organisation in UK, etc. Will not be using them again, life is too short! Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
We chose this trip from an Readers offers Ltd advertising literature it was supposed to be APT but we later found out that as Travelmarvel its the more budget arm of APT so you need to see APTs brochure to find out the difference.The ... Read More
We chose this trip from an Readers offers Ltd advertising literature it was supposed to be APT but we later found out that as Travelmarvel its the more budget arm of APT so you need to see APTs brochure to find out the difference.The cruise was not cheap at £6600 and that was supposed top be discounted. Glad we didnt pay full price.According to the write up we had from ROL all sightseeing excursions were included not so ! and drinks which were subject to cruise lines Ts&Cs which of course you are not given until after you have booked. They are only included at meal times.There are no swimming facilities on these ships and i was told later thats because its a travelmarvel ship not an APT one.We didnt start well as the air travel arrangements that Travelmarvel arranged dispite being booked for twelve months in front were abysmal ive flown from America and not took as long.The Cruising we payed extra for what was advertised as a balcony.it was no more than a French window. Which you couldnt use a lot of the time because it was either nigh time and you were asleep or being moored against another ship.These ships have been desigined badly from the point of view that a lot of the time you cannot stay on the sun deck because of low bridges and that was with the lowest water levels on record these things were not readily mentioned. So this put another dampener hence we had to re pack our cases midweek and transfer by road to the sister ship the Jewel. That was out of there control but we did 150-200 klms by coach. The cruising is also a con as most is done at night and out of 12 days we probably only enjoyed quality river cruising for about 20hrs. Cabin and staff were good as was the food.Cruise director was in the main good but enjoyed his own act! So did we think it was VFM ! no ! Is Travelmarvel Marvelous Not as much as they would like to think ! Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
Wanted to visit Budapest and Vienna on a land tour so with the extra ports, seemed to make sense (we are not interested in organized bus tours, but having the same room every night is appealing). While the tours and tour guides were good, ... Read More
Wanted to visit Budapest and Vienna on a land tour so with the extra ports, seemed to make sense (we are not interested in organized bus tours, but having the same room every night is appealing). While the tours and tour guides were good, the onboard experience was lacking. We are frequent travellers (every two to three months since retiring six years ago) and experienced cruisers (50+,including one Viking river cruise on Elbe). On first trip with a travel provider, I always choose lowest pricing/category to gauge the experience/service offered to these guests. Theory being, if experience at this level is wonderful, higher levels should be WOW! Then we know if we want to travel with them again. Unfortunately, while the crew members were polite, general service and their response to requests was non existent (not really sure if Suite guests got better service/response). 1) Bike requests- we reserved before sailing but no need to reserve, always seemed to have some available. We used them twice. First time in Vienna and had to go through several before we found some that were usable — inflated tires, functioning keys, helmets with proper straps, etc. The second time we requested them and had to wait quite awhile for them to be brought outside and they were quite dirty —we cleaned them. 2) Outside areas— unfortunately, this cruise sails through 66 locks and multiple bridges. Everything on the sundeck has to be put down so no one was allowed up there. That left the front, enclosed sitting area which is small, hot and always full and the very small back area outside the Captain’s Club which was not pleasant due to exhaust. We had the cabin with non opening windows but this ship has no cabins with balconies, only French balconies which are just floor to ceiling windows; I asked people in these rooms and they said the views (and air) were limited. In any case, there was no outside area to relax in. 3) Entertainment onboard- there was no regular entertainment, the evenings we were sailing so there was nothing to do. One reason we thought this river cruise would be fun/interesting was that we would be docked in the evenings and go off the ship (we did this on Viking) but this particular cruise schedule was such that this was Impossible. There was entertainment three times: a dancing couple trying to get a party going (we left after about 20 minutes), a German singing group (great fun and enjoyable) and a solo songstress (good voice but kind of an odd act). The onboard lectures were quite interesting. 4) Dining— this was the most disappointing aspect of this trip. I am not sure why people rate the dining well. While the kitchen did seem to concern itself with presentation (always pleasant looking dishes), - ingredients for the most part were lower quality and sparse (thin, grisly steak, a shrimp appetizer consisted of baby (canned?) shrimp, tiny serving of salmon (maybe two bites?), steamed vegetables consisted of one small broccoli piece, one tiny cauliflower florets and one SLICE of carrot. —all cold, etc. -service was limited and extremely slow (we had to wait 30-40 minutes between courses, one time 45 minutes between soup and main course — only four of us at the table) -nothing was hot, even soup sometimes was only lukewarm, had to send lasagne back to be microwaved(?— quality kitchens do not microwave to heat up, they ensure just in time preparation, even for large groups), butter did not melt on potatoes or veggies and, once, our table companions requested coffee, the server said it was cold and brought it anyway — didn’t even offer to make a new pot. The guest went to the coffee machine in the lounge and brought back two coffees(service??). The buffet food was never hot, not even warm. We rarely ate lunch on the ship because of this, if we did, we made sandwiches and we got into the habit of making just toast for breakfast;however, they did have one person making eggs to order which we did do a couple of times with our toast. — special requests/substitutions weren’t honoured, I.e. I asked to hold potatoes but give me double vegetables (not done), my husband asked for a piece of salmon to be added to his beef plate (not done), I asked that a dish be served without the risotto advertised with it - no substitution, just not give me the risotto (not done) After the first meal, we spoke to the maître d’ and asked each server when we placed our orders to ensure that our food be served hot (we changed tables regularly to see if the new server could respond to our requests —did not happen). We started to eat dinner in the Captain’s Club because the grilled foods were literally hot off the grill but, again, limited servings. Frankly, the best meal we had was off the ship at the German bbq lunch that was included (this was the most fun experience provided by the ship). This trip was very disappointing and with so many options available, I will not travel with them again. Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
Service on Magni was very good. Had to switch ships halfway due to water levvels. Staff not nearly as attentive or nice. Third day they were still asking us what our cabin number was when we ordered a drink. On Magni, they knew day one. ... Read More
Service on Magni was very good. Had to switch ships halfway due to water levvels. Staff not nearly as attentive or nice. Third day they were still asking us what our cabin number was when we ordered a drink. On Magni, they knew day one. Food was ok, not a big selection.Got very tired of busing everywhere, especially last day. Spent 8 hours on a bus. I paid for a river cruise! Saw some beautiful places. No place to workout, half the time, the walking deck was closed. Minimal entertainment. Not much to do on board.Some of the optional excursions were good. Loved the 3 day pre cruise in Prague. Worth the upgrade to be right in town. Gift shop is a joke unless you want to buy overpriced Viking items. While they gave us a 25% credit towards a future cruise, unfortunately that will probably go to waste as to why would I subject myself to that experience again? Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
We really thought the Viking longship was built just right with its very convenient and pleasant public areas and restaurants. The service was excellent. The staterooms were kept extremely clean and our AA Suite with its separate living ... Read More
We really thought the Viking longship was built just right with its very convenient and pleasant public areas and restaurants. The service was excellent. The staterooms were kept extremely clean and our AA Suite with its separate living room was worth the substantial extra charge. The Danube itinerary, which we had done on Viking a few years ago, is excellent. However, while docked you are frequently tied up to other Viking boats and have no view while in port. While mid-trip we were forced to switch from another Viking longship due to low water conditions (which of course Viking cannot help), the switch was accomplished very efficiently with a 3 hour bus trip. The Tour Director "Leonard" was simply excellent the entire trip not just in the transfer. However, the food while offering various options was so disappointing and mediocre at best. We are used to very good and often excellent food served on ocean going ships. Perhaps Viking is providing that on its new ocean going ships, but we will not book another Viking riverboat cruise. Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
We had travelled with Avalon previously in 2015 and spent a lot of time convincing my sister and her husband to join us for the Budapest to Amsterdam cruise. This was to be the trip of a lifetime for my sister. As you read on you will feel ... Read More
We had travelled with Avalon previously in 2015 and spent a lot of time convincing my sister and her husband to join us for the Budapest to Amsterdam cruise. This was to be the trip of a lifetime for my sister. As you read on you will feel our disappointment with the trip but please read to the end of my comments. On arrival in Budapest we met people who had travelled up from Amsterdam and were told that their cruise had been impacted by low water levels. Later we were told that a large group of Americans had cancelled for our trip leaving just 88 people out of a possible 140 guests. The cruise started well and soon reinforced our decision to convince our family members to join us. By the time we reached Passau we were informed that low water would prevent our on travel and we would be bused for a few days and that the boat might catch us later down river. Our options were to leave the tour then with a refund of the remaining sailing component of the fees. The other option was to stay with the group and Avalon has promised, in writing, to refund 50% of the cruise component for the bus trip days. This is a fair option but at the time of offer we had a glimmer of hope that we would be reunited with the boat soon. Almost all on board took the option to stay with the group. Aussies and Kiwis are pretty resilient so despite some grumbles they were up for the challenge. Unfortunately reuniting with the boat did not eventuate and in the final analysis we had a tiring experience busing through busy Europe to complete our planned excursion visits and ongoing passage towards Amsterdam. It was hot, many of the coaches were cramped and poorly airconditioned. Early morning departures lessened the trip experience further and in my opinion it became more like a "going to work" experience. The hot conditions took their toll and many were exhausted by the daily grind. There were no opportunities for people to opt out and take a day off as was possible on the boat. This was a problem that could have been managed by the bus options to include a day off option or bypass to the next destination. Nevertheless there are some good points to stress. First the standard of the boat and crew was exceptional. Friendly and helpful at all times. The cruise director Andre and later with assistance from Hans were very experienced people and quite sensitive to needs however there were some gaps in the itinerary that appeared to meet the needs of the company rather than the guests.....bad business practice ! We saw quite a bit of the country side but from a bus view it was restricted and I think many guests just slept their way through the excursions...missing a lot along the way. These guys were also very entertaining and provided an essential buffer to reduce possible ill feelings amongst the guests towards Avalon. So where does this leave me and my family in regard to this trip and Avalon ? Obviously you can see this was a disappointing outcome which as mentioned can happen with high or low water conditions. Assuming that Avalon meet their stated refund then I will have confidence to travel with them again. That would be a fair deal. I would caution Avalon in making assumptions about bus travel in very hot conditions. They may have dodged a bullit if there had been a serious heat stroke. Some came close to it. At this stage we will try Avalon again. Their facilities and staff and services are to good to not travel with again ! And we will all watch the weather predictions more closely when booking....next time. Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
The entire crew was excellent -- efficient, helpful, and attentive to all needs. The Captain's Table tasting dinner was also excellent and beautifully presented. The food in general was great. But the overall plan of the trip and its ... Read More
The entire crew was excellent -- efficient, helpful, and attentive to all needs. The Captain's Table tasting dinner was also excellent and beautifully presented. The food in general was great. But the overall plan of the trip and its cost was the issue. In each city, we had a local guide, and they varied wildly in quality from excellent to worthless. The trip was short and expensive for the time it covered, esp. when airfare was not included, and so I always felt rushed at most of the stops and without a good feel for the people and places. This was very much a trip that felt like "If this is Tuesday, this must be Vienna." I would recommend the Budapest to Prague trip to friends as the cities and countryside are beautiful and full of history. But I used AMA for reasons involving travel companions; I've been much more satisfied with two Grand Circle cruises I've gone on and will always use them from now on. Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
This was a most disappointing holiday for the high price we paid. When booking this trip we assumed that you are able to step off the boat in to the towns listed and enjoy exploring on our own. Unfortunately we spent more time on buses as ... Read More
This was a most disappointing holiday for the high price we paid. When booking this trip we assumed that you are able to step off the boat in to the towns listed and enjoy exploring on our own. Unfortunately we spent more time on buses as the docking stations are too far away. We also had to change ships which meant a 3 hour bus journey therefore missing an afternoon in Nuremberg. That then necessitated a 1.5 hour coach journey back to visit Regensburg from Passau on the following day. When in Koblenz the ship only docked for 2 hours so again little time to explore. If you intend to book find out exactly where you will be docked and for how long. We were also not informed at booking that the sun deck would be closed for 2 days because of low bridges. Had I been informed at booking I would not have paid extra for a balcony as we could not sit on it for about half the trip as the ship was docked along side other Viking boats a number of times. The included tours would have been good had it not been so busy. The number of tourists at the venues being taken around on guided tours meant they were packed (many of them from other Viking ships). Most of our guides however were knowledgeable and interesting. I cannot complain about the ship, cabin , staff or food. The sip was clean, the cabin whilst small was good and the food very good. I would not do another river cruise and would not recommend this one. We have emailed Viking but as expected have had no response. Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
We booked a cruise with Riviera Cruise on the 25th August 2017 and flew out on the 21st June 2018 for 7 days. After some research and watching your virtual tour of the ship; we chose this holiday with you company. I think it’s only ... Read More
We booked a cruise with Riviera Cruise on the 25th August 2017 and flew out on the 21st June 2018 for 7 days. After some research and watching your virtual tour of the ship; we chose this holiday with you company. I think it’s only fair to give the positive feedback first: We found the front of house staff excellent and very helpful We found the cabin staff that looked after housekeeping very good and friendly The young girl who did my hair was wonderful (it's a pity that the people who have such skills as hair dressing would not be considered to work in front of house on reception rather that cleaning toilets and bedrooms!!) Fresh fruit served at breakfast So to continue with the rest of the feedback: Our cabin: On arrival to our cabin we had 1 case between us, we were rather shocked at the size of the cabin; my husband had to climb over the bed to get to the other side, we had to unpack our case at 02.030 in order to make room for us to go to bed. I refer to your description of the ship as 5 star, - there was nothing 5 star about the pillows (I have attached a picture, they are stuffed with some sort of foam, and left me with pain in my neck) we had to endure this for the 6 nights we stayed, nor was the bed linen 5 stars!! I also attach a picture of the table in our room, which had stains and looked very shabby. The smell of cooking was so bad in our cabin, it was making us nauseous, this smell was in our cabin for the 6 nights, I spoke to the manager in relation to this and she assured me it was not coming from the kitchen! The lounge area for lounging in: The colour of brown and orange is so outdated in the lounge it was not at all pleasant to lounge in. The entertainment at night was so awful that people were in bed by 10.00; you should really consider rethinking the on -board entertainment! You advertise the following top liners: “State-of-the-art, five-star MS William Shakespeare” the “luxurious cabins and excellent facilities are undoubtedly the very best on cruise ships today”. This is not true. ‘Fine Culinary Experiences’: ‘Quality dining is an integral part of your river cruise experience – our ships take this to the highest five-star levels with superb cuisine prepared by a dedicated brigade of chefs.’ We had no fresh vegetables at all during our trip, At lunch one day they had frozen breaded schnitzel , The salad counter had the same processed meat and cabbage salad for the 6 days; - a deli counter in a petrol station would have a better selection. We were also served frozen wedge potatoes and frozen hash browns The soup that was served at lunch and dinner was so bad; it was warm water with a vegetable stock and pickled with salt, ( I did offer to give the chef a recipe for soup, but the waiter just ignored me), and in case you are wondering why I say there was no fresh vegetables on board the ship; on our last day minestrone soup was on the menu and it was very clear it had frozen vegetables ‘Start the morning with a delicious breakfast’. Take a stroll on the Sun Deck and enjoy early risers’ tea or coffee with your freshly baked pastries.- This was not on offer on board ‘Don’t forget to leave some room for afternoon tea and the chef’s special patisserie’ – it’s just too tempting to even attempt to ignore. This was not on offer, there was a coffee and tea machine in the lounge with shop cookies on offer, and each day there was chaos around the coffee machine with people in a queue. Overall the MS William Sheakspear ship needs a complete make over and Riviera Travel needs to give the customer what you are advertising; you are not delivering a 5 star experience To say the least we are not happy with our holiday; we spent €4,636.00 plus €365.00 on board the ship. We purchased our holiday based on the advertisement , marketing and the virtual tours we took on line. We did not have a 5 star experience because there was no 5 star and Riviera are falsely advertising and on this bases we asked for a refund. Our travel agency compensated us with 300 euro which is not even what we spent on board during this ordeal. Overall I would not recommend travelling with Riviera Travel. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
We are on this cruise now, half way through in fact. While so many things are excellent, there are aspects of our experience that are not so good. The ship’s clientele are mostly Australians and to say they are a lively bunch is an ... Read More
We are on this cruise now, half way through in fact. While so many things are excellent, there are aspects of our experience that are not so good. The ship’s clientele are mostly Australians and to say they are a lively bunch is an understatement. The ship can get extremely noisy at mealtimes, something we are not used to on other cruises we’ve been on. Our cabin is very good. Quite spacious and well equipped. It is also very clean and well maintained by the cabin stewardess. The bathroom is one of the best we’ve ever had on a ship, lovely and light and with a wonderful shower. The only thing missing is tea\coffee making facilities. In our cabin we have butler service but have not used this facility as it’s never been explained to us what it entails. Maybe we should ask? We have used the laundry service as we are allowed one bag of free laundry, wash and ironed per week, an excellent service. Another great thing on the ship is the free WiFi which is fast and always available. Now for the bad. The food. The breakfast is Ok but the choice of cereals is very poor. The muesli is very low grade, mostly oats and tastes of nothing. No fruit and fibre cereal, only AllBran and sweetened cereals. The fruits on offer are good, especially the fresh orange segments. Bananas are not always available, getting one is proving very difficult, nor the unsweetened plain yogurt, only sweetened. I only eat cereal and fruit for breakfast so was very disappointed with the choices. I decided to buy some real muesli at one of our port stops and thankfully I bought teabags onboard and get these topped up with boiling water in the lounge! Lunch is either salad choices, always the same with slight variations, pretty boring. There is always plenty of meat on offer but as a non meat eater this is not good for me. Dinner is the worst meal of the day. Choices are usually one meat, one fish and one vegetarian. The meat dishes seem to be the favourites with most passengers and are usually ok according to my fellow diners. The fish dishes are fine, not particularly exciting or tasty, just average. The vegetarian meals on the other hand are dreadful. Really bad. Spinach crepes were thick doughy pastry, tough and tasteless with a teaspoon of thin cheese sauce, we left them.The vegetable lasagne was equally bad, dry tough pasta layers, cubed carrots, peas and potato I think(?) no cheese sauce, just dry layers, all sat on a smear of tomato sauce, it really was appalling. With most meals hardly any vegetables are served. Even the meat eaters are complaining about this. I asked for more vegetables and this was addressed but now I get a bowl of watery broccoli and cauliflower with each meal. This is served with such a flourish I feel as if I should be grateful and not complain any more. Oh dear, I think this is the only Cruise I might actually lose weight......(not a bad thing really!!!) Another thing we are not happy about is the noise from the sundeck which is above us. The thumping of heavy feet from about 5.30-6am is really annoying. Tip. Don’t book a cabin under the sundeck! Generally the Cruise is good with friendly helpful staff and good choice of tours. We just wish the food was up to standard as this would improve our holiday so much. One other thing we don’t like is the over familiarity with the restaurant staff. This may be down to the Australian passengers encouraging them, but some of us don’t need to have all the jokes and hi fives when we enter the restaurant. A little decorum and quiet would be appreciated. Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
1/ We chose this cruise because we felt it would be interesting to see the scenery from the boat as we cruised down the Danube——however, the problem was that we actually spent very little time looking at the scenery since we were off ... Read More
1/ We chose this cruise because we felt it would be interesting to see the scenery from the boat as we cruised down the Danube——however, the problem was that we actually spent very little time looking at the scenery since we were off the boat much of the time—-that was a disappointment —- 2/ The cruise was too structured——-because of the size of the ship there were fewer options—for example—-dinner was at ‘set’ times with little flexibility——limited wine list and we got the feeling that the crew were happy to have us off the Ship for the day—- 3/ We spent too much time on buses and not enough time ‘on the river’ looking at the views—we hardly had any time in the city of Vienna——a fact that disappointed a lot of the people we spoke to onboard 4/ The staff were hard-working and very professional and they wanted to please in every way 5/ The ‘Taylor-Made’ audio units were large and it would have been better if they were more compact——and if they had ‘blue-tooth’ capability so that you could get the audio information over your own cell phone and ear-phones 6/ I think they would benefit by having a few ‘half-day’ Excursion options to coincide with the full-day options—-as it’s a long day for a lot of people and then you have to rush to get ready for dinner—-it seems like you’re running all day most days——-from the time you get up till you go to bed——not very relaxing at all——— 7/ ON YOUR RATINGS CHART —-THE SELECTIONS RANGE FROM ‘TERRIBLE, POOR, AVERAGE TO VERY GOOD TO EXCELLENT———I THINK YOU SHOULD LEAVE OUT ‘TERRIBLE’ AND RANGE FROM POOR TO EXCELLENT BUT ‘INCLUDE’ THE CATEGORY OF ‘GOOD’——-GOING FROM AVERAGE TO EXCELLENT IS NOT A REASONABLE ‘LEAP’—— 8/ THE ON-SHORE GUIDES WERE VERY KNOWLEDGEABLE, PROFESSIONAL AND COURTEOUS——-WONDERFUL AMBASSADORS OF THE COMPANY——IN PARTICULAR WE HAD A GENTLEMAN IN PRAGUE NAMED ‘PAVEL’ ON OUR ‘POST-CRUISE PORTION——HE WAS FIRST-CLASS IN ALL RESPECTS—— Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
Scenic was recommended by friends and travel agents as the best. The ship was both attractive and clean, as well as our cabin. Dining was a pleasant experience with great service and many food selections. Appetizers and entres were ... Read More
Scenic was recommended by friends and travel agents as the best. The ship was both attractive and clean, as well as our cabin. Dining was a pleasant experience with great service and many food selections. Appetizers and entres were attractively presented but as a taste experience were average. Desserts at the service centre along the highway had more visual appeal than anything presented onboard. Food could be view as average. Lounge entertainer David was excellent in his entertainment and most likeable and personable. Service was excellent. Excursions were greatly informative and enjoyable with the exception of Nuremburg. That was partly due to the black history of Nuremburg but largely due to an inexperienced and ineffective guide. This was a great way to explore Hungary, Austria, Germany and Czech Republic, countries we have not previously visited but not one we would repeat. Pleasantly upon return we both found that we lost weight on this cruise, rather than gain the 10 pounds that we were told we would...a testament to the mediocrity of the food! Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
Family heritage encouraged us to take this river cruise departing budapest hungary, sailing thru austria and ending in nuremberg germany. very nice land tours & ports. Awesome bed. great storage in room. bathroom needs hanging ... Read More
Family heritage encouraged us to take this river cruise departing budapest hungary, sailing thru austria and ending in nuremberg germany. very nice land tours & ports. Awesome bed. great storage in room. bathroom needs hanging space. one small towel rack to hold 4 towels (layered on top of each other for esthetics) and after use where do you hang 4 towels? Needs hand towel rack as little bitty countertop has no room. our deluxe "balcony" was not really a balcony at all. balcony was actually a space completely part of the regular room that had 2 chairs beside the window. The exterior wall was all window but only the top half rolled down to open air; because this was a river cruise we were requested to use the screen covering if putting window down but, screen was a dark screen and couldn't see out of it so didn't use window opening; deluxe balcony was really a room about 1-1/2 ft wider with a very large window. oh - biggest problem: coming from usa needed us electrical plugs and there were none. fortunately we brought 1 converter but this took forever to charge a cellphone even with usb cord brought from home. there were no usb plugs either. We had 2 cellphones and a waterpik.... also, marketed as luxury cruise with butler for each room and we never saw our butler and bed turn down only happened about 50% of the time. note: of the 140 patrons on board, 54 were american, 60 canadian, rest were australian, china, chile. food, while elegantly presented, was not usa food, unusual offerings that seldom were appetizing as unusual foods (chef was from croatia), very tiny portions, (i'm a small female), no bread and there was no food bars etc. Available between breakfast, lunch of after dinner. one dinner seating which was usually 7-7:30 (varied day to day) which meant you left dinner around 9-9:30 and with no entertainment went to bed with full stomach. Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
My wife and I sailed on the Viking Romantic Danube cruise April/May 2018. We did the pre-cruise excursion in Budapest and the post-cruise excursion in Prague. It was mostly good, but with a few issues. Here are the pros and cons: Pros: ... Read More
My wife and I sailed on the Viking Romantic Danube cruise April/May 2018. We did the pre-cruise excursion in Budapest and the post-cruise excursion in Prague. It was mostly good, but with a few issues. Here are the pros and cons: Pros: 1. Friendly and attentive staff. 2. Cabins were small but very well appointed. Storage space was more than adequate. 3. Food was uniformly good. I would not call it gourmet food, but always good quality and plentiful. 4. Cleanliness. I believe the captain mentioned that Atla was built in 2013. After five years, she still looks great and the crew kept the ship spotless. 5. Marco, our activities director, was excellent. We appreciated his sense of humor and he always kept us informed. Also, unlike with other ships, he seemed to be everywhere and also gave the impression he really enjoyed his job and passengers. 6. Enjoyed the ports. Budapest and Prague were favorites but we enjoyed all the stops. Especially enjoyed the abbey tours in Krems and Regensburg. 7. Service and logistics. Viking did a really good job of herding the cats (passengers) and kept things running smoothly and on-time. Reception desk service was usually prompt and efficient. 8, Post-cruise hotel (Art Nouveau) in Prague was truly excellent. Great location, beautiful rooms, fantastic breakfasts and friendly and professional staff. And now the cons: 1. Internet service. Having experienced the problems with expensive online access on ocean cruises, we were drawn to Viking’s promise of free Wi-fi service. However, access was extremely limited, slow, and not available for long perids of time. We could not send a single photo home while on the ship – had to wait to find decent Wi-fi in the ports. My advice to travelers who need reliable online access is to skip this ship and/or itinerary. 2. Tours. We liked the fact that there was a free tour included every day and some of them were great (e.g. the Budapest and Passau walking tours). However, the quality of the guides varied quite a bit in knowledge, enthusiasm and English speaking skills. 3. Crowding. One of the reasons we chose Viking was to have a calmer and less-crowded experience than with the large ships. Yet with a full ship of 190 passengers, there were times it was difficult to find a seat in the lounge or on the sun deck. This was not as big of a problem as with ocean ships but still a bit irritating. 4. Entertainment. The piano player (Peter?) was good and his Tom Jones concert was superb, but the variety and quality of the entertainment was just okay. We certainly didn’t expect as much as what you get on an ocean cruise but I believe Viking can do a bit better. 5. Fitness. There is no fitness facility onboard, other than a small walking/jogging track on the upper deck. This was not a major issue for us due to all the walking we did while on tours, but could be an issue for others. 6. Pre-excursion hotel (Sofitel) in Budapest was disappointing. The room was small and the staff not particularly friendly. They seemed bewildered that an American traveler would require an adapter to use 110v current. My mistake for not bringing this but instead of loaning us the adapter (as they did at our Prague hotel), the gentleman at the business services office tried to sell one (which he wrongly claimed was a converter) for 22 Euros, about three times the cost of such an item on Amazon.com. Overall, we would rate the Viking experience as good, but not great. It met our expectations in most areas, but didn’t truly “wow” us. We are certainly open to cruising with Viking again, but they really need to fix the internet access issue. Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
We chose this cruise as it was advertised as 5 star, everything was 5 star except the food, which was awful. The standard of the food was unacceptable for a cruise of this quality - one and a half hour wait for the main course, ... Read More
We chose this cruise as it was advertised as 5 star, everything was 5 star except the food, which was awful. The standard of the food was unacceptable for a cruise of this quality - one and a half hour wait for the main course, inedible raw tough meat that had supposedly been cooked for 8 hours, half empty buffets,lemon meringue pie with the uncooked egg whites raw on top, to name but some of the problems. Dining in Portobello's and the Captains dinner was no better. The Captain's dinner starter being scallops, which turned out to be one scallop, which when cut into it was raw so not eaten , lobster came , looked good but was once small piece of lobster and the rest of the shell was filled with mushrooms in cheese sauce. The waiting staff were the ones who had to face the customer but the problem was not theirs - the kitchen just could not cope. Food is a very important feature in a holiday of this calibre and this was not up to standard. It was such a shame as all other aspects of the cruise were perfect -good cabins, trips,chauffeur to airport etc, but the kitchen let the rest of the ship down. Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
I chose this cruise because it was a great itinerary at a good time of year. I was told there is an elevator on the boat because I cannot walk stairs. There is indeed an elevator but it does not go to the top deck which was how many ... Read More
I chose this cruise because it was a great itinerary at a good time of year. I was told there is an elevator on the boat because I cannot walk stairs. There is indeed an elevator but it does not go to the top deck which was how many times one had to go to to get off the ship, consequently I was not able to go on any of the included tours. To be fair in my revue, the boat itself was lovely, the food very good and the staff could not be better. They even put a chair for me in the shower. My wife who was able to go on the included tours told me they were very good and comprehensive. We spent two nights in Budapest which is a lovely city with a very interesting history. We were put up at a very fine hotel and a tour of Budapest was included but again on the tour no seat was held for me on the bus so I was not able to go. I think the staff was not totally aware of how to deal with the handicapped. I took a private tour thru the hotel which I enjoyed very much. In conclusion this is a great trip and a very fine cruise line so long as you are in good shape Read Less
Sail Date March 2018
This was a 'special' Mary Berry Telegraph cruise which set off on 22 November 2017, not on the 17 November. We chose this cruise on the recommendation of our friends who are platinum Scenic travellers; they said that ... Read More
This was a 'special' Mary Berry Telegraph cruise which set off on 22 November 2017, not on the 17 November. We chose this cruise on the recommendation of our friends who are platinum Scenic travellers; they said that previously the food was always amazing and the excursions brilliant. The ship is lovely, as are the cabins; they are spacious and light and the cabin balconies are just wonderful. The staff are also superb, with one or two exceptions. However, some things were disappointing: Logistics: Approximately 100 of us arrived at the same time in Budapest airport. We were greeted by two reps and herded together in the arrivals area until everyone had been rounded up. We were then shown to our coaches for the transfer to the ship. There was no-one on the coaches to explain what was happening or to provide assistance. We suggest that people are shown to the bus in smaller groups so that they can sit in comfort whilst others arrive. It would also have been nice to have been provided with a bottle of water and a guide to tell us what was happening ie how long the transfer would be etc. Most of the passengers were pensioners and had been up since at least 0400, so a drink would have been welcome. We were offered lunch once we arrived on the ship, the lunch was fine. However, there were long delays waiting for the buffet to be replenished. On the return journey we had to leave suitcases outside our rooms at 0730 despite the fact that we weren't leaving the ship until 1045. That meant getting up very early. Excursions: Budapest City tour was fine. There just wasn't enough time in Budapest. Schonbrunn Palace was stunning. However, there was virtually no free time to look around independently or to peruse the Christmas market. The return coach was twelve minutes late collecting us - that just rubbed salt in the wound. We could easily have had more time at the palace if we had left the ship a little earlier. Spanish Riding School: The visit was in the afternoon which meant that it was impossible to see the horses rehearsing or performing. Cesky Krumlov: A fantastic day out! It snowed and we had a perfect amount of time to visit this amazing Unesco heritage town. Although the lunch was rather grim. Entertainment: Piano recital was wonderful - we hadn't realised that a virtuoso pianist could produce such astounding music. Orchestra/Ballet/Opera evening was perfectly pleasant. However, it would have been wonderful to have visited the real thing rather than these pale imitations. On-board entertainment was fine if you like thigh slapping, lederhosen dancers; jolly accordion players and traditional folk singers. On-board pianist was very good and provided some lovely background and dance music. Food: This was really disappointing. Remember our friends had 'sold' us the holiday on the basis of the fab food. Dinner in La Rive on our one permitted evening was very good. The rest of the food was OK, but nothing special. Mary Berry: was as lovely as you might expect; perfectly charming and very approachable. However, what ever made anyone think that a boat load of pensioners would want her latest book 'Household Tips & Tricks' in which Mary shares those little domestic secrets that she has gleaned over many years. Did it not cross anyone's mind that the passengers had all lived a long time and had probably gleaned most of the same tips and tricks. Mary Berry is a renowned cook. We were expecting a cookery book! And then there were the mince pies made with minced beef instead of mincemeat. How was the poor pastry chef to know that there is an important difference between mincemeat and minced meat. Our friends were embarrassed because we had booked the holiday on their recommendation and it didn't come up to standard - even the Cruise Director said more than once that this was not a typical Scenic cruise. We were sad for our friends because we really wanted the cruise to live up to their expectations too. Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
Despite this cruise being advertised by the Daily Telegraph, booking and payment were made to Scenic and as a platinum member we received all of the normal Scenic benefits, so naturally we expected everything to be as good as all of the ... Read More
Despite this cruise being advertised by the Daily Telegraph, booking and payment were made to Scenic and as a platinum member we received all of the normal Scenic benefits, so naturally we expected everything to be as good as all of the other times that we have travelled with Scenic. The ship was beautifully presented in a modern style as usual; the majority of the staff were as efficient and helpful as usual; the included expertly guided tours to Budapest/ Melk Abbey and Cesky Krumlov were excellent as usual and the coaches were immaculate as usual BUT the food was way below the usual 5 star standard. As some friends had joined us on this cruise having listened to us rave about the fantastic food that was always served on board, this was particularly embarrassing. The degustation menu served on the invitation night at La Rive was very good but the experience was so much better when a round table was used because it was much easier for people to converse. The dinner served at Portobellos was average. The food on the lunch time buffet, apart from one or two dishes was also average. We had an alternative choice of steak a couple of times and it was perfectly cooked. The food did improve slightly on the last couple of days when the guest speaker, Mary Berry, joined the ship. Each cabin was given one copy of her latest book 'Household Tips and Tricks', which, considering that most of the people on board were over 60 was not perhaps the best choice. Her latest cookbook would have been more appropriate. She was very interesting and friendly and chatted with everyone and signed autographs, but when she had one of the chefs on board make 3 pastries as per her recipes, 2 of them were a disaster. There were also some timing issues with a couple of the excursions and the 'tailor made devices'. There were a fair number of people on this cruise that had never travelled with Scenic before and I heard a number of them say that they would have expected higher quality food on a ship that is at the top end of river cruising. If I hadn' t been on other Scenic cruises I would be unlikely to repeat the experience. Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
We chose this cruise as we had cruised from Amsterdam to Budapest previously and thought it would nice to go the other direction from Budapest. We signed up for both the pre-cruise to Warsaw and Krakow and the postcruise to Romania ... Read More
We chose this cruise as we had cruised from Amsterdam to Budapest previously and thought it would nice to go the other direction from Budapest. We signed up for both the pre-cruise to Warsaw and Krakow and the postcruise to Romania and Transylvania. (Dracula, you know). I had to call their offices twice as they had us leaving on the wrong date, and we would, in the first case, have missed the whole pre-cruise, and in the second case, missed the first day. The lady at their office said they had some kind of automated scheduling program. Guess they need to get that fixed. One couple who was on the pre-cruise ended up flying into Budapest - right day, wrong city. They were rescheduled but had to pay a baggage fee, as it was no longer an international flight, as well as a taxi, as there was no one to meet them in Warsaw. Good luck on getting a refund on that, if I can believe previous traveler's reviews. The pre-cruise involved two whole days of bus travel. One day from Warsaw to Krakow, and one from Krakow to Budapest. The day of travel from Warsaw did allow us to visit Auschwitz. Very heart wrenching - especially the children. The cruise was just a typical river cruise. Nothing terribly exciting. The usual home visit, cathedrals, excessive time allowed for shopping and "hanging out". The food was, however, better than on our previous two river cruises. Even the sirloin steak was tender. Cabins were typical - 165 sq ft. Bed, small table and two chairs, bathroom with shower. Our cabin did have a refrigerator, which was nice, so we could put our pop, etc in it. We had an "A" French Balcony cabin, so that explains the refrigerator. On these cruise ships, I don't know why they don't just put in floor to ceiling windows and forget the balcony. Its worthless, as you can't go out on it, as it's only about 8 inches wide. Post cruise we went to Dracula's Castle. Actually Queen Maria's castle, and built way later than Dracula. Still interesting. But we did get to see where Dracula did live. It's now a restaurant. Also The Parliament Building. Its the largest Government Administrative Building after the Pentagon. 4 million sq ft! I enjoyed that. Also the Romanian food. Definitely related to Greek cuisine. Would say the post-cruise was better than the pre-cruise. Staff was helpful and accommodating. Oh - most of the younger people in Eastern Europe speak English. Its required starting in first grade. So that's nice. I'm afraid many Americans do not speak a second language. Not that it would be Romanian anyway. And yes - the staff pressured everyone to put EXCELLENT on their reviews. They said, if you think it was good, but maybe it was ALMOST EXCELLENT, then mark excellent. Well, I question that. Are we to compare to just river cruises? Or ANY cruise we've been on. Lets face it, a river cruise can't compete with Seabourn. They had a port talk every night. Some lectures, sometimes by the cruise director. Folk dancing, the usual river cruise entertainment. Nothing to write home about. The use of pan pipes was interesting, but of course those originated in Greece, though we think of them relative to the Andes. All in all, as I sometimes say, I'm glad I went, but I won't go back. Note; We got a reduced rate as we went in November, when the weather was already chilly. Make sure you take you scarf and gloves if you go in the late fall. And a warm coat. Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
Recently travelled with Emerald from Budapest to Amsterdam. I went to Budapest a couple of days early, and stayed on the ship the first night. We did a tour of Budapest from the ship, as well as an evening cruise on the Danube. The ship ... Read More
Recently travelled with Emerald from Budapest to Amsterdam. I went to Budapest a couple of days early, and stayed on the ship the first night. We did a tour of Budapest from the ship, as well as an evening cruise on the Danube. The ship itself was modern, with good facilities. Shore excursions were well organised, and the tours hit all the highlights. Options offered were good. On board entertainment consisted of a piano player in the lounge, and the odd game night. Movies in the theatre were the same as you could get in your cabin, so not well attended. The crew night was fun - it wasn't professional, but that was the charm, and the crew acknowledged they were amateurs. Cabin was clean, and well maintained, although a little tight between one bed and the bathroom. Drawer space was more than adequate, but at the cost of a smallish closet which contained the room safe and mini-bar. Cabin staff was excellent. Overall, staff were good. Unfortunately, lunch and breakfast were buffet style and the food was not kept warm. Eggs cooked for you at breakfast were fine, but the meats and scrambled eggs were in trays that appeared not to be heated. Even if you dug down to the bottom of the scrambled eggs, they were still cold. At lunch, soup was hot, and pasta in heated dishes were warm, but the other hot entrees were anything but. Ironically, dessert at the evening meal was frequently served on dishes that appeared to come straight from the dishwasher. Hence, cheese melted to the dish, and ice cream melted quickly. This was a remarkable adventure, but when people ask if I recommend it, I tell them yes, but not with Emerald because of the food. Read Less
Sail Date October 2017
After numerous ocean cruises, we decided it was time to try a European river cruise and friends suggested Avalon. Choose the Blue Danube Budapest-Prague itinerary for mid-Oct based on the sites, included pre and post-cruise hotels, the ... Read More
After numerous ocean cruises, we decided it was time to try a European river cruise and friends suggested Avalon. Choose the Blue Danube Budapest-Prague itinerary for mid-Oct based on the sites, included pre and post-cruise hotels, the price of a Royal Suite and hopes for fall colors. Overall, we were delighted with the stay in Budapest and Prague, the included city tours and the awesome fall colors along the Danube. Biggest disappointments included the lack of any on-board amenities for a suite, mediocre food and entertainment, an egotistical Cruise Director, poor communications and policies before and during the cruise. Specifics include poor excursion policies, pricing where excursions booked on-line cannot be changed beyond four days prior to the cruise. After listening to the Cruise Director's on board review I met with him to request changes including canceling and adding some. While able to add excursions, he immediately disclaimed any association with pre-booked excursions and would not cancel. Find this very disappointing, frustrating so warn others not to book pre-cruise as there were always plenty, but pricey, openings. Also, unlike suites on ocean cruises, we did not have any on-board amenities. In fact, while we could get only a continental breakfast delivered they charged $2 pp! With 137 passengers we only saw the officers at the first and last cocktail receptions! Overall, think ocean cruises on small ships offers much more than river boats! Read Less
Sail Date October 2017
Unfortunately we have been spoiled by Silversea. Scenic promise a level of luxury equal to Silver Sea,it does not deliver. If I were able to count the hours ,aside from using the boat as a hotel,i would suggest we were on a bus more ... Read More
Unfortunately we have been spoiled by Silversea. Scenic promise a level of luxury equal to Silver Sea,it does not deliver. If I were able to count the hours ,aside from using the boat as a hotel,i would suggest we were on a bus more than on a cruise ship. River was low at Regensberg so we were bused to Nuremburg and then Praque which was not a fitting ending to a cruise where there was really only one day on the river cruising. When you then add the hours spent on the bus going on the tours etc ,most of our time over the 11 days was spent in a bus. Butler service was basically non existent after the first day, food was ok, double and triple docking of boats is a pain,looking into other peoples staterooms when you wake up in the morning is not what we paid for,going from Budapest to Prague,get a starboard room. A some points there were 4-5 boats jockeying for position, at the piers ,i thgink the whole Danube experience is being ruined And then we arrive home and find that Scenic is not even listed any longer in the top 10 Conde Nast River Cruises ,not surprised really,spent a lot of money for an overall average experience. Probably would not do it again Read Less
Sail Date October 2017
Lovely ship and so clean.. Sadly on the first evening for dinner it was a right " shambles ". Didn't know where to que for what and then couldn't fine a place to sit. Should have had staff to help sort it out. Also on ... Read More
Lovely ship and so clean.. Sadly on the first evening for dinner it was a right " shambles ". Didn't know where to que for what and then couldn't fine a place to sit. Should have had staff to help sort it out. Also on many evenings at dinner ,when you needed another glass of wine the staff didn't seem to notice . But, other than that ,, it was lovely. The ports of call were great and loved the day we went to have tea with a local family. Would loved to have tried the pool but wasn't brave enough . Due to the weather. Nina our tour guide was always there to answer any questions. Had a massage and it was just " wonderful. Please enjoy your cruise and have fun. Would go with Emerald again . So go go go go go ,fun fun fun . Xx Read Less
Sail Date October 2017
We are very frequent cruisers (50+ ocean cruises) but we recently took our first ever river cruise aboard the Emerald Sun travelling from Budapest to Nuremberg. The holiday didn't start off well with the airline (KLM) arranged by ... Read More
We are very frequent cruisers (50+ ocean cruises) but we recently took our first ever river cruise aboard the Emerald Sun travelling from Budapest to Nuremberg. The holiday didn't start off well with the airline (KLM) arranged by Emerald cancelling the outgoing flights due to 'high winds' whereby instead of arriving at the ship at lunchtime it was after 6.00 pm we eventually arrived. Despite our late arrival the transfer arrangements worked well and we received a warm welcome on board. Prior to the cruise Emerald described their cabins as some of the biggest on the river cruise market. We had nothing to compare this with but when we were shown to our cabin - a panorama balcony cabin - we found it to be very, very compact. It was the smallest cabin we have ever experienced. It did have a large bathroom, probably disproportionately large when compared to the size of the cabin with the entrance sliding door only 40 cms or so away from the side (pillow end) of the bed. The cabin was well appointed with drawer space but seemingly at the expense of hanging wardrobe space. One half of the wardrobe contained the fridge and safe so the remaining hanging space was even too short for trousers folded in half on a trouser hanger or blouses, etc. There was a very large flat screen TV with a reasonable amount of channels and free to view movies and the electrical sockets required the standard 'European' adapter. The sockets were poorly placed, however, particularly for my wife as there wasn't a mirror near to the sockets where she could 'do' her hair or apply her makeup. We had our own hairdryer with us with a relatively long lead so my wife resorted to sitting (or kneeling) round the corner in the entrance hallway, which was in itself poorly illuminated and using the full length darkened mirror - not ideal. There was adequate lighting and mirrors in the bathroom for her to apply her makeup. One omission that I would have expected to find in such a modern ship was usb charging points to prevent having to fiddle about with adapters, etc. As we arrived so late on the ship we made our way to the main lounge as quickly as we could and did see the last 15 minutes or so of the performance of the Hungarian folk group. They were very good as were the Bavarian 'oompah oompah' band on our last evening. All other entertainment was staff led and while the resident pianist was okay a decent singer or two would have made all the difference. As stated at the outset we have nothing to compare this experience against so perhaps this is the 'standard' aboard such relatively 'high end' river cruises. The Gala Welcome Dinner was quite a disappointment. There were relatively few choices, again this may be standa5rd across the river cruise industry, and the food that was served was at best warm. I eat anything but my wife is less adventurous when it comes to food. There were a few daily 'alternatives' always available such as clear soup, chicken breast, rump steak, which she resorted to on a number of occasions. I asked for a steak once - medium rare - that was delivered very well done. I would point out though that most of the meat served on the cruise was very good quality and very tender, but it was seldom served hot. Breakfasts offered the standard fare and a reasonable variety but again the hot food was seldom hot. I'm not a great lover of warm beans and scrambled egg. The breads, cold cuts, cheeses, etc., were, however, very good so I resorted to those for most breakfasts. Coffee on the ship was excellent with modern bean fed coffee machines available and delightful short crust biscuits to enjoy with the coffee. Bus and/or walking tours were included in this cruise and were very well delivered, with excellent guides providing the clearly well informed commentary. The audio devices provided worked very well. All the towns/cities we visited on this cruise were most enjoyable. These included Budapest, Bratislava, Vienna, Melk, Passau, Regensberg, with Vienna being the exception, not because of the scenery, but because after the walking tour we had 2 hours free time before the earliest bus back to the ship. It was a very cold day and because it was a Sunday all the 'regular' shops were closed. Highlight of the cruise was probably the evening sail in Budapest with all the important buildings and landmarks illuminated. What we didn't realise about this cruise was the 25 locks to navigate between Budapest and Nuremberg. Experiencing some of these in daylight was actually very interesting, but actually quite alarming on occasion when these were navigated at night. We were often awoken with loud bangs and shudders caused by the ship coming into contact with the lock walls. Coming awake on such occasions it was actually quite disorientating looking out the full size window to see 'nothing' but a dark, wet lock wall only a few inches away. We really enjoy sitting on the top deck of the ship watching the landscape go by but when negotiating some locks we were sometimes restricted from doing due to low lying lock structures, etc. This was most evident on the last section of the cruise when were negotiating the Maine-Danube canal and the top deck was closed for more than a day due to low bridges, etc. If we are to repeat our river cruise experience we would certainly do our research beforehand and avoid rivers with locks, or at least so many locks. As part of our cruise we had a 'premium drinks package' and the ship had a good selection of beers, wines and spirits to allow us to fully enjoy that package. Dress code was quite casual throughout the cruise. I took from the cruise brochures that I would occasionally wear a jacket and tie, so I took a dress jacket, a couple of appropriate shirts and suitable ties, but when I wore it to the Welcome Gala dinner I realised immediately that I was completely overdressed so it never 'escaped' from the wardrobe again during the cruise. So all in all a reasonably enjoyable and relaxing cruise holiday, but not one that we were 'blown away' with. If we are to consider another river cruise we may check out the 'competition. Read Less
Sail Date October 2017
My husband and I toured with Emerald River Cruises on the Emerald Star ship, Budapest to Prague, 11 days, September 28th to October 8th, 2017. Overall, we enjoyed the cruise very much especially the itinerary and staff interaction. A ... Read More
My husband and I toured with Emerald River Cruises on the Emerald Star ship, Budapest to Prague, 11 days, September 28th to October 8th, 2017. Overall, we enjoyed the cruise very much especially the itinerary and staff interaction. A special thanks to Vladimir, Vladvarmina, Milos and Olga in the restaurant. Their jovial interaction made our trip most enjoyable. Our Cruise Director, Balazs, was the most efficient, helpful, individual we have ever encountered on a River Cruise. The only downside to our cruise was the cabin and food. The cabin was very, very small. We stayed on the 2nd main floor where the restaurant and front desk were located. Its location was perfect. The room itself was very modernly appointed, kept very clean (thank you Anton) but way too small for two people. The window of this Panoramic Balcony Suite was poorly designed and does not allow for easy viewing of the scenery outside. The automatic window slides down but the main frame where you sit blocks your viewing quality. Secondly, the food was mediocre and never warm except at the a la carte sittings for dinner. In this modern day and age, there must be a way to keep the food hot. Many of the passengers were first time cruisers and a younger crowd. On our cruise there was an even distribution of Canadians, U.S. and the rest were British, Australian and a family from Malaysia. The interaction with other guests was easy and we had a lot of fun with them. As I said before, we had a wonderful time but have been spoiled by our voyages with Uniworld and Avalon River Cruises, who have larger cabins and outstanding food, always hot, even at the buffet. Read Less
Sail Date September 2017

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