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105 Emerald Waterways Europe Cruise Reviews

The whole week on Emerald Liberté was wonderful. The staff were all very friendly and attentive and made us feel at home. The food was fresh, plentiful and really delicious , cooked by the award winning chef. One night we had a guest chef ... Read More
The whole week on Emerald Liberté was wonderful. The staff were all very friendly and attentive and made us feel at home. The food was fresh, plentiful and really delicious , cooked by the award winning chef. One night we had a guest chef who cooked an amazing regional menu. We visited some beautiful places including Arles, Avignon, , Tournon, Lyon and Beaune, the highlight of these being Avignon. The local guides were all very knowledgable and interesting, keeping us entertained as we walked around the beautiful places. On board there was always plenty to do, with quizzes, game shows, golf and Boules. There were also local presentations on wine, silk scarves and cheese, which were very interesting. There was a lovely mix of people to meet on board with several nationalities represented including Australian,Canadian, American, South African and British. I would highly recommend this trip and look forward to our next river cruise. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
It was recommended by a friend and it did not disappoint. The staff were all brilliant, especially the restaurant staff. Everyone aimed to please with smiling faces. The cabins were well maintained, the food was excellent. We ... Read More
It was recommended by a friend and it did not disappoint. The staff were all brilliant, especially the restaurant staff. Everyone aimed to please with smiling faces. The cabins were well maintained, the food was excellent. We celebrated a birthday while on board and we were treated very special and met our request. The food was excellent with good choices daily. There was more alcohol than I could ever manage and the wines especially the rose was superb. On the evening of my friend’s birthday a local Michelin star chef prepared the dinner, which made it very special for her. It was a perfect evening. The tours were well planned and the tour guides were very knowledgeable. I had a shared cabin and there was enough space for both of our stuff. The cabin was very well appointed. It was also very nice when the staff participated in the evenings activities - it made us feel special. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
An excellent cruise to enjoy. All facilities excellent. Staff excellent . This cruise is seriously tops. The staff were helpful and not over intrusive. It is difficult for staff to provide just the correct amount of ... Read More
An excellent cruise to enjoy. All facilities excellent. Staff excellent . This cruise is seriously tops. The staff were helpful and not over intrusive. It is difficult for staff to provide just the correct amount of friendliness without being invasive. The staff on board Emerald Dawn were excellent. They provided us with a wonderful experience. The organised programme was exciting, and very well planned and we were guided through the most interesting sights of all the cities and villages we were able access. Many of the activities required overseeing at a very high level and the Emerald Dawn staff and guides achieved this level unhesitatingly. The tour guides had extensive knowledge of their area and this was noticed by the passengers. Overall our time onboard the Emerald Dawn was amazing and we would seriously like the staff to be praised for the excellent presentation of the river trip onboard the Emerald Dawn Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
Wanted to see some of Europe. This was an excellent choice. Value for cost is terrific. We stayed in lower level rooms and they were very comfortable with quite adequate room. I wouldn't bother paying extra to get a small balcony ... Read More
Wanted to see some of Europe. This was an excellent choice. Value for cost is terrific. We stayed in lower level rooms and they were very comfortable with quite adequate room. I wouldn't bother paying extra to get a small balcony (in my opinion). Food is top notch, but we have no food allergies and are meat eaters. But there are vegetarian options if necessary. The staff is very considerate and helpful. Breakfast and lunch are buffet style while dinner is set. There's a choice of 2 appetizers, 2 soups, 3 entrees and 4 desserts. They also have the "Chefs Favourites" listed which is what the Chef recommends of the previously mentioned options. I went with the Chefs Favourites for all dinners and was not disappointed. They tried to pair the wine with area being travelled through, which was quite nice as well. There was an included excursion at each port and 2 where you had an option. On one of these the cost was extra, but we thought it was well worth it. It was the drive to Chochem. We did recommend on our survey of this excursion that we would have liked another 1/2 to hour of free time. Each stop has its unique features. The ship on/off procedure is well organized. All local tour guides were excellent and all spoke very good English as does the ship staff. The room steward did a a great job cleaning our room daily. Sarah, the entertainment director had evening entertainment of some sort planned but it's your choice to partake or not. The drink package selection could have more options but this isn't a big deal for us. As noted above, we had a great time and highly recommend this cruise. We will sail Emerald again. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
I was interested in visiting the Rhine. Looked for a company and ship which had more activities whilst sailing. Emerald sun not only had a pool, cinema, gym, massage treatment but had an entertainment manager who organised yoga, pilates, ... Read More
I was interested in visiting the Rhine. Looked for a company and ship which had more activities whilst sailing. Emerald sun not only had a pool, cinema, gym, massage treatment but had an entertainment manager who organised yoga, pilates, zumba and other game shows to include all who wanted to join in. She also sang brilliantly and arranged disco nights. A couple of nights we were entertained by outside performers. A very varied and well organised entertainment plan. The restaurant was well run with very varied menu including all diets. They were very obliging whenever there was any type of foods you couldn't or didn't want to eat. They'd always find an alternative. Very attentive ensuring you always had a drink. Everyone served each course together and no hanging around between courses. Our rooms were very comfortable and clean. A laundry service was available at a reasonable cost. All the staff very friendly and efficient and always ready to make us laugh. I would definitely recommend emerald waterways Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
We chose this cruise because of the excellent experience we had with Emerald on the Douro earlier this year. The company were very helpful with choosing flights and sorting out embarkation and disembarkation.The ship was very clean and ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the excellent experience we had with Emerald on the Douro earlier this year. The company were very helpful with choosing flights and sorting out embarkation and disembarkation.The ship was very clean and staff were helpful and the Cruise Director was exceptional - thanks Darren! Having a larger pool was a bonus, as were the acuarobics. Entertainment was up to the usual Emerald standard, and the shore excursions and activities each day were interesting and good value. Food was generally very imaginative and we had the services of a famous French chef one evening, who produced a really splendid dinner. It was a very hot week, and the air conditioning throughout the ship was welcome. This meant that outside activities were restricted. I would have preferred a more relaxed dining option like we had on the Douro - i.e. dinner from 7.30 - 9.00 p.m. rather than the set time of 7 with a 15 minute window. Too early for us, but I understand that the Americans like to dine at that time. The ship mainly sailed through the night, and that meant we didn't enjoy much of the wonderful countryside and the excitement of going through the 12 locks - the nicest days were the last two, leaving at 3.15p.m. for the journey. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
Having been in the travel business for over 49 years, I wanted to try this cruise line and also take a river cruise, which we had never done. We paid full fare. With some small exceptions, it was a perfect vacation. They provided fabulous ... Read More
Having been in the travel business for over 49 years, I wanted to try this cruise line and also take a river cruise, which we had never done. We paid full fare. With some small exceptions, it was a perfect vacation. They provided fabulous backpacks and ticket wallet pre-cruise. They met our plane, and transferred us to the hotel, even though we arrived two days early to get acclimated to the new time zone. Ship was beautiful, spotless, and cabin space very well planned, with plenty of storage space for our two huge bags of luggage, as we traveled pre and post cruise. We would have liked more hooks. They provided bathrobes and velour slippers, Each room had a flat screen TV with huge number of channels, with movies, TV series, travel videos. Umbrellas, walking canes, earplugs, Moulton Brown toiletries, and WASHCLOTHS---a rarity in France. Shower space was fabulous compared to our last cruise on a regular cruise ship in March. Just wonderful. The only negative was the chairs in our in-room balcony were too big for the space and really, really uncomfortable. Included tours were excellent, the guides on almost every tour were delightful, charming, humorous, knowledgeable and spoke perfect English, which we followed on our Emerald padded headsets, which you re-charge every day. We booked 3 extra tours for the afternoons, and they were worth every penny, as these were spectacular points of interest visually, and you also got to see the countryside on the way to the destination. I don't think you could take a bad picture at any of the places we visited---we took over 75--- and every single one could be a postcard. Tournon was our least favorite stop, as there is not a tremendous amount there---maybe a cooking class could have been offered? Evening entertainment for us was mostly movies in the room, but we did go to the movie trivia night--where I won the bottle of wine! It was lots of fun, though we wished the evening events started just a bit earlier, as 9:15PM was late when you had to get up early in the morning for the tours. We are not morning people, but we adjusted. Our cruise director Darren, and the activities director Didi (I'm sorry if I have misspelled their names) were very entertaining, helpful, and efficient. Loved these guys! My husband took one of the bike tours, and enjoyed it immensely. Never used the pool, gym, hairdresser, masseuse, or did yoga, so can't comment on those activities. Breakfast had 3 times; early, regular, and quick bite so you could make the tours. Buffet of selections for every taste, but darned near impossible to get a cup of coffee right when you sat down. Don't know why they don't have coffee machines in the dining room, as I ended up getting mine at the machine in the bar and walking it downstairs---not good--- or safe. Lunch buffet was also very good, lots of selections, with choice of two kinds of ice creams with toppings, and sauces--- every day. Always a line for that. Again, getting a non-wine beverage here was also a problem, and I ended up bringing my iced tea down from the bar. However, if you are a wine drinker, you're in great shape on this cruise, as they never stop pouring...….ever. Dinner was our least favorite meal. We advised in advance that we don't eat pork products, veal, and I'm allergic to shellfish. The first night there was nothing on the menu I could eat, so I spoke to the maître d. She advised there was always a choice of a steak, salmon fillet, or chicken breast and Caesar salad. So, we ordered the steak the first night. The Caesar salad came with BACON sprinkled on it (!!!) and the steak was very tough, so we stuck with salmon most nights--though I don't love it, it was tastier than a plain chicken breast. The celebrity chef night was absolutely the best meal of the cruise, and we could have had his menu and bread every night and would have been very, very happy. The dining staff needed more training, as they could not accommodate any special requests, i.e. dressing on the side for the Caesar salad. In fact one night I was told that the Caesar was an entrée! They cannot deviate, and don't understand what you are trying to say. Also, they forgot two special meals at two other tables around us, and one passenger was furious. Dinner is one sitting at 7PM, so I understand the difficulty of serving over 130 people all at once. Maybe a smaller buffet in the bar area would help--- like they do for breakfast. I actually prefer buffets, as I can choose what and how much I eat. Dining portions were very small, but OK for us. Miguel the dining manager was very charming, always cheerful---but he has his hands full training this dining staff. Also, they need to try to smile more, as they always seemed stressed---which they were, I'm sure. If you have never taken a river cruise before, please be aware there is lots and lots of walking, sometimes you have to climb up and down stairs as you cross over other boats you are tied up to. Because you are tied up to them on some days, you cannot raise the shades in your cabin---so the "balcony" becomes unusable. But you are off early and don't spend much time in the cabin on most days. Also, this cruise is not suitable for children, as there are no activities for them. Most of the cruisers, I would guess, were over 60. All in all, an almost perfect vacation. Wish they did a Normandy River Cruise! Read Less
Sail Date August 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
Wanted to see the Rhine and Danube in comfort and good food with nice company and excellent service. This is what was achieved. Great bunch of Australians and New Zealand guests on board. The staff were superb, probably the best crew ... Read More
Wanted to see the Rhine and Danube in comfort and good food with nice company and excellent service. This is what was achieved. Great bunch of Australians and New Zealand guests on board. The staff were superb, probably the best crew ever on any ship or hotel where we have stayed. The boat was roomy, very clean and all inclusive meant all inclusive without having to pay for any extras. The chef was most accommodating, defiantly went the extra mile with brilliant service. Could not have done more. Even had our anniversary covered with lighted cake with all the waiters in line singing our congratulations, when we hadn’t even told anybody except agent here in UK. Very pleased with the Emerald concept, good Managers, cruise director and events manager. Would be delighted to return, the Rhine Gorge in particular was stunning and worth getting up at 6.30 as we sailed through it. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
Suberb,clean,modern,well organized ship.Armin, room steward and Michael cruise director were charming helpful and kind.Great staff, meals and itinerary.ThanksCaptain Stamen for great leadership! The included on shore trips were great. ... Read More
Suberb,clean,modern,well organized ship.Armin, room steward and Michael cruise director were charming helpful and kind.Great staff, meals and itinerary.ThanksCaptain Stamen for great leadership! The included on shore trips were great. HOWEVER, those with canes, or disabilities don't have equal access to sites which require extensive walking,climbing .However, staff at the sites eg Vienna private show helped with special access to elevators and seating. The music shoe in Viea was outstandin and worth every penny. Loved the Hungarian band and dancers on board the Sky Glad to have all tips included in price.Easy! The buses to and from sites were well organized . Luggage handled by staff boarding and debarking. Weathe was great for the end of August on the Danube from Nuremberg to Budapest except a bit tpp warm om Aug 30 to Aug 31. I would recommend this trip and itinerary. Just add more otions for those with disabilities and perhaps seat these people first on buses. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
We picked this cruise as it was on offer, so we felt we could do an “extra” cruise this year, and we fancied the Danube. The ship was meant to be the Emerald Dawn but it was changed for the Emerald Sky. The trip started well, with ... Read More
We picked this cruise as it was on offer, so we felt we could do an “extra” cruise this year, and we fancied the Danube. The ship was meant to be the Emerald Dawn but it was changed for the Emerald Sky. The trip started well, with good seats on the plane and priority boarding. We were met at the airport, along with 2 other couples and taken to the ship in a large, comfortable Mercedes van. The ship exceeded my expectations and was modern, spacious and spotless. Check in was easy and we were soon in our cabin. We had opted for the cheapest cabin on the lowest deck with a picture window. It was very reasonable and roomy enough. The sliding door to the bathroom right next to the bed was odd but we didn’t mind it too much, as space would be lost if the door position was changed. The staff were wonderful on the whole. Service was always with a smile. Special mention to Simona, Katerina, Violeta and Zainep and our thanks to all. The food was surprisingly good, although the hot food at breakfast was rarely hot. Buffet lunches were excellent and set meals in the evening were very good, showcasing local dishes. You could always substitute main courses for steak, salmon, chicken or Caesar salad. Entertainment was varied - a good pianist, an oompahpah band (with yodelling!), the liars club was hilarious (guessing which staff member was truthfully describing a ridiculous sounding foreign word) What really made this cruise fantastic was the other passengers. What a lovely group of people. Everyone chatted to each other. We had such a good time and made new friends, some of whom I’m certain we shall see We will certainly cruise with Emerald again. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
The cruise was to celebrate our Diamond Wedding Anniversary and it was a great success. We found Emerald Waterways and excellent company and they and their staff went the extra mile to make the trip enjoyable. We liked the small ship which ... Read More
The cruise was to celebrate our Diamond Wedding Anniversary and it was a great success. We found Emerald Waterways and excellent company and they and their staff went the extra mile to make the trip enjoyable. We liked the small ship which meant we got to know the fellow passengers and met and made some lovely friends. The crew and staff were very effecient and friendly, the food and dinning room service were excellent. The cabin (303),although small, was comfortable and always turned out immaculately by the cabin staff. The trip along the Douro was lovely and the shore excursions well organised and successful.There are probably lower cost river cruises but you get what you pay for. The no cost, free flowing drinks were a bonus. Thank you Emerald Waterways for make our trip memorable. The fact that we were celebrating a very special event was remembered and made even more special by the members of the crew and, of course, the good friends we made. We thank you all! Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
This is our third cruise with Emerald. Did same cruise 3 years ago. Beautiful ship. Spacious and spotlessly clean cabins. Excellent service and choice of food and drinks. Very attentive and friendly staff. Interesting shore excursions ... Read More
This is our third cruise with Emerald. Did same cruise 3 years ago. Beautiful ship. Spacious and spotlessly clean cabins. Excellent service and choice of food and drinks. Very attentive and friendly staff. Interesting shore excursions every day. Good entertainment. Absolutely no problems or concerns. Definitely recommend. Daily information sheets and maps of each excursion. Cruise director very knowledgeable about places visited. Guided daily tours very informative regarding town and village histories. Comfortable coaches to same. No problem airport pick up and drop off. Emerald staff at airports to help. Lovely pool on board which converts to cinema during the evening. Free tea and coffee machines 24/7. Free wine beer and soft drinks with meals. Excellent selection of food at breakfast. Buffet or a la carte at lunch. A la carte for dinner with choice regional foods (5 course) or steak, chicken or fish if preferred. All in all an excellent cruise line. Definitely be visiting again. Thank you Emerald for yet again a wonderful 2 weeks. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
After watching the tv show cruising with Jane McDonald, we decided to give it a try, as she had an amazing time. The boat was amazing clean modern well kept, the food was fantastic breakfast, lunch and dinner great choice of food. ... Read More
After watching the tv show cruising with Jane McDonald, we decided to give it a try, as she had an amazing time. The boat was amazing clean modern well kept, the food was fantastic breakfast, lunch and dinner great choice of food. the service was great, polite friendly so well mannered nothing too much trouble very attentive . A lot of the trips where included, the guided tours where very informative, gave in site and place to visit, the guides where all local and very knowledgable. Very relaxing when cruising to out next destination Ideal for complete relaxation on board, we used the pool and sun deck On board services where great something for every one, the high light was being invited on the last night to join the captains table for dinner We defiantly recommend and would use emerald again would look to go on another emerald cruise at a different location Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
This is my 26th cruise and the first on Emerald Waterways, I did not expect it to be as good as some I have been on, but the whole cruise exceeded my expectations, the ship is beautiful, spotlessly clean with superb staff, I fully ... Read More
This is my 26th cruise and the first on Emerald Waterways, I did not expect it to be as good as some I have been on, but the whole cruise exceeded my expectations, the ship is beautiful, spotlessly clean with superb staff, I fully recommend Emerald Sky as a truly great value for money cruise From the moment we joined the ship in Vienna, we got a great city tour on the Sunday, Monday we went to Budapest, once again a city tour with a great guide gave us an insight to this lovely city, When we were leaving Budapest, we were all on the top deck enjoying drinks and watching the lights as we sailed down the Danube, Our next stop was Mochas in Hungary where we visited the beautiful walled city of Pecs, it has a beautiful Bassilica and Synagog, We then visited Novi Sad in Serbia and on to Vukovar in Croatia where we were treated to lunch in a local house to taste local food, a lovely warm welcome and great hostility. Our final stop wes Belgrade, a lovely city tour with a guide who could make a living as a comedian, In the afternoon, a visit to the opera house, I would never have believed that one could have such access to behind the scenes, made all the more memorable when we had champaigne and two beautiful singers sang four arias from popular operas and stayed and talked to everybody, the display of costumes was fantastic, A trip to remember! Lar Sheeran Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
What a great experience we had sailing from Budapest to Nuremberg on the Emerald Dawn. It was our first cruise of any kind. We went with another couple and also made some friends along the way. What did I like so much? - We arrived in ... Read More
What a great experience we had sailing from Budapest to Nuremberg on the Emerald Dawn. It was our first cruise of any kind. We went with another couple and also made some friends along the way. What did I like so much? - We arrived in Budapest a day early. We called to see if we could drop our bags early on the day of embarking, so we could enjoy the whole day in Budapest until dinner. They were accommodating and welcomed us so warmly when we arrived. FYI - the docking spot is close to a subway stop! Recommend the Szechenyi Baths. As the boat stayed in Budapest overnight, we walked up Buda Hill behind the boat (20 min walk uphill) for stunning views of Budepest at night! - Choices/options each day for activities. We like to be active and adventurous and we appreciated the option to go on a hike or bike, or do our own thing at each stop. The guided tours we did do were also well worth the time! Favourite days? Bratsilava and bike trip from Dürnstein to Melk! - Very comfortable rooms, that are well appointed and organized. We were on the bottom floor. Although it would have been nice to be able to open the window for fresh air, we never missed out on views. I was worried about noise, but other than the unavoidable noises like going into locks, we heard little from our room and slept very well on the very comfortable bed! - Many lovely spots to enjoy the boat - large sun deck, lovely patio on the bow near the bar, beautiful restaurant with views from every table, and a very comfortable lounge! And you could always get lovely coffee drinks, tea and cold water. - Favorite spot? The pool with views at the stern, with coffee/tea machine. Great morning spot! - Crew was exceptional! Captain inspired confidence in his ability to navigate the waterways, the room was always well cleaned at respectful times, the dining room staff was attentive, professional and fun! - The food was excellent! And so well planned...loved the flexibility of breakfast (early and late breakfast option), buffet lunch, and the evening meal was always beautiful! Tea time was nice if you missed lunch staying longer in town! - And what made the trip run so smoothly was Nina, our amazing cruise director! She was very kind, enthusiastic, organized, kept things on time, and was so responsive to everyone’s different wishes! Much gratitude for a wonderful trip Emerald Dawn! Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
Our first cruise of any type - ocean cruises have never appealed to me - but this trip ticked all the boxes for places I wanted to visit, with the added bonus of a private performance in Vienna by Strictly stars Anton Du Beke and Erin ... Read More
Our first cruise of any type - ocean cruises have never appealed to me - but this trip ticked all the boxes for places I wanted to visit, with the added bonus of a private performance in Vienna by Strictly stars Anton Du Beke and Erin Boag, and a dance masterclass/Q&As on board with them the next day. Ship facilities top notch and staff/service an absolute joy. All thoroughly professional yet relaxed and friendly. We particularly loved the glass and mirrors decor which made the ship feel so light and airy. An apparent improvement this year was the introduction of an events manager, so that aside from the two nights where excellent local musicians came aboard to perform, there was always some evening enterainment provided, such as "Battleships/scategories","Family Fortunes," 70s/80s disco night, etc. He also provided an excellent cabaret as a singer himself one night. There was the occasional film night and aquarobics in the pool. Special mention to our Tour Manager, Nina who was a delight - efficient, and very open and friendly. Food: Evening meals were a 4 course nouvelle cuisine menu with a meat/fish/vegetarian option, or you could chose from 3 set menu options each night (steak, chichen breast etc). These were all very tasty, albeit low on the potato side of things! and on the 2 Captain's welcome/farewell nights there was also a palette cleanser sorbet course. Breakfast was a sumptuous spread of everything you could possibly want, with a chef cooking eggs/omelettes live to order. Lunch usually consisted of 2 "hot" dishes, sometimes cooked live, 2 soups, salads, etc, cheeseboard, cakes/desserts. You could also order a main course from the daily menu. Would have to say the hot dishes didn't stay very hot in the warmers, but it would have helped if the plates were warmed as well! Would have appreciated soup spoons as the one-size dessert spoons I felt were too big for the deep sided bowls. Wine, draught beer and soft drinks all included at lunch and evening meal. But bottled cider and beer were charged for. Loved the Vienna concert and performance by Anton and Erin. Our only slight disappointment was that the Active PLUS cycle ride option the next day, which we really wanted to do actually coincided with the Masterclass onboard so we had a tough choice to make. Would have liked to have been able to do both! Port and shore excusions were well organized and very enjoyable, with "gentle" options for those less mobile. Would have to say that if you want to see more of the embarkation location (in our case, Budapest) it would be best to arrive a day earlier. We boarded at 2pm the day we arrived and only got one morning to see the city before the ship sailed at 1pm for Bratislava. At the other end of the trip, Nuremburg, we were fortunate in that our transfer to Munich was not until 2pm so we were able to make our own way into the city for the morning (by taxi) and spend a few hours there before returning to the ship for lunch. Other passengers had morning transfers so saw nothing of the final destination as the ship docks some 15-20 mins drive from the city! The only other nuisance was that we were transferred to Munich airport 6 hourse before our flight, and were therefore lumbered with our luggage for 4 hours before the bag-drop opened. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
The cruise director made us feel at ease as we sailed along the Danube, parting his knowledge with us and making sure we knew what we were doing at all times. It definitely took the stress out of a holiday! All the staff on board were ... Read More
The cruise director made us feel at ease as we sailed along the Danube, parting his knowledge with us and making sure we knew what we were doing at all times. It definitely took the stress out of a holiday! All the staff on board were lovely and extremely attentive to everyone’s needs. We visited many cities and went on interesting tours with knowledgeable guides, and were welcomed back every day with amazing food! The ship was always clean and cabins were serviced each day to a high standard. We felt safe and secure all week and never worried about leaving our belongings on board. The entertainment was well organised so we always felt like there was something to look forward to even if we didn’t go on an excursion. Most of all we enjoyed getting to know all the guests and experiencing an amazing time together! I would highly recommend an Emerald cruise to anyone who wants a stress free relaxing holiday, with still plenty to see! It’s not a huge ship either, with only around 150 passengers we all felt well cared for. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
We chose Emerald because of the help staff at time of booking and we are glad we did. The planned our entire trip including our flights and everything went very smooth. The entire staff was friendly and made sure we had whatever we needed. ... Read More
We chose Emerald because of the help staff at time of booking and we are glad we did. The planned our entire trip including our flights and everything went very smooth. The entire staff was friendly and made sure we had whatever we needed. Our cruise director Luka was fantastic and extremely organized and knowledgeable of the towns and culture. He also was a great musician and tour guide along the river. The food was very good and gave us a taste of the different areas we were going through. The activities were well planned out and fun, everything was done on time and the guides did a good job. The cabins are nice and the balcony window that you can lower is great! Our room was always kept clean and the beds were comfortable. I highly recommend EMERALD CRUISES to anyone interested in a luxury trip on the river Rhine. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
We chose this cruise because of the location and price. We were met at dockside by the tour director (Nina), dropped our bags off. She took us onboard where we could have a snack and a coffee. We then went off to explore Amsterdam. ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the location and price. We were met at dockside by the tour director (Nina), dropped our bags off. She took us onboard where we could have a snack and a coffee. We then went off to explore Amsterdam. There was no set seating in the dining area so you could choose to join others or be by yourself. The meals were a la carte and lunch and dinner usually consisted of five courses, breakfast was a very good buffet. Service was great, attentive but not hovering over your shoulder. The only negative about food/dining was that sometimes it was slow but overall very good. The Rhine River was spectacular, the shore trips were excellent and very well organised, english speaking guides on every occasion and we were provided with a listening device so that it wasn't necessary to be next to the guide to hear him. My big gripe is that on this particular trip Emerald/Evergreen had a film crew on board,complete with models to produce a advertising clip. That was a pain, go to the pool and they were there filming, you're lying in the sun on the top deck and the next thing there is a drone buzzing up and down,around the ship filming. I thought it was intrusive. Another thing it seemed that the film crew had special privileges, they were allowed to smoke on the Terrace (which is a non smoking area) everyone else had to smoke at a special area at the stern. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
We were interested in the area and have travelled on Emerald before and liked the boats (especially the swimming pool). . The crew were very good, customer service excellent, a there was a varied and interesting events programme. There ... Read More
We were interested in the area and have travelled on Emerald before and liked the boats (especially the swimming pool). . The crew were very good, customer service excellent, a there was a varied and interesting events programme. There was not a lot of sailing during the day as the nature of the trip meant there were short hops rather than long gaps between towns but that was more than made up for by the interesting medieval towns on the itinerary. There was lots to do on and off board with a full programme including yoga, walking tours, aqua aerobics and quizzes and all the staff were cheerful, efficient and hard working and any problems ( of which there were few) were dealt with immediately). The cabins were comfortable and well designed with ample storage space and kept immaculately clean by the housekeeping staff and there was a good choice of food, delicious and well cooked. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
We chose this river cruise because it was highly recommended by our travel agent and other collegues who have gone on other river cruises. (The Douro river valley is very picturesque with its vineyards and old vineyard buildings dominating ... Read More
We chose this river cruise because it was highly recommended by our travel agent and other collegues who have gone on other river cruises. (The Douro river valley is very picturesque with its vineyards and old vineyard buildings dominating the landscape). We had a 3 day stay in Lisbon before our departure. Hotel Jupiter Lisboa was excellent. The included bus tour of the city was very good. but we thought the excursion to Sintra the second day should have been included in our price. The trip to Porto from Lisbon was somewhat long....we spent too much time in the resort town of Navarre where there was little too do but shop for trinkets. The ship was very attractive and clean, but tended too be a bit too small. Cabin was tight even though we had a Panorama view suite. Bed was very comfortable, and steward service was excellent. We were somewhat disappointed in the size of the ship...only one dining room and lounge area..tended to be too intimate and small. The sundeck's walking track was too crowded and there was no putting green. The entertainment on the ship after supper was barely there...no piano music on the grand piano...trivia game with the activity director. Embarkation of the ship went fairly smoothly, but we were very disappoointed in the evening sunset cruise that was suppose to happen in Porto. There was no announcement and the ship did a sail while still light, no where near sunset and everyone was just getting settled and ready for dinner. Ports and included excursions were very good and enjoyable. Most tour directors knew their information. Service was very good and friendly. However, communication was somewhat difficult. Employees could speak English but some appeared to have a hard time understanding questions. On board activiites like bracelet making and tile painting were good ideas but instructors tended to take over and do the project for you. Meals on the Radiance were good. Breakfasts and lunches were very good but the supper dining experiences were somewhat disappointing. Soups tended to be bland and some of the entrees lacked taste. Presentation was excellent. We are not big drinkers, but I thought the included beer and wine, at no cost, was a nice gesture. We have no intention on going on another river cruise because we found it too relaxing, and ( I hate to say it but somewhat boring' especially on the sea days). We heard such wonderful things about river cruises, and it was good, but maybe our expectations were too high. On one last note, having all gratuities included up front, made it much easier. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
We booked on short notice. This one was available for the cruise location we were looking for, and had some spots available. First thing we looked for was "tipping included" and pretty much everything else was also included. ... Read More
We booked on short notice. This one was available for the cruise location we were looking for, and had some spots available. First thing we looked for was "tipping included" and pretty much everything else was also included. Due to a lock door incident weeks prior, we were actually on the Emerald Destiny and not the Emerald Star -- a new ship in the fleet -- and it was amazing. Clean, fresh and new. The staff and crew were incredible -- always going above and beyond. Helpful, friendly and always smiling. The excursions were perfect. Just the right number. There was something new to do every day. Food was great. Lots of choice and the farewell dinner was unbelievably awesome. We knew ahead of time that there would be a large American group on board -- their group was SO FRIENDLY and it really added to the cohesiveness of the trip. Thank you, Parrot Heads! I have absolutely no criticisms of this trip or the crew or the touring company. Well done, Emerald. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
We chose this cruise for its itinerary, with some of the ports being new to us. We have travelled on Emerald Waterways several times before, so had a high expectation and our expectations were all met and exceeded by this ship, its crew ... Read More
We chose this cruise for its itinerary, with some of the ports being new to us. We have travelled on Emerald Waterways several times before, so had a high expectation and our expectations were all met and exceeded by this ship, its crew and the itinerary. Emerald have high standards, and this continues on this ship. The crew are very hard working and friendly, and make every effort to respond to whatever requests passengers make. As with every Emerald ship we have been on, the food is to a very high standard. The crew prepare the dining room perfectly, so that it is almost a shame for the passengers to come in and spoil the beautifully laid tables. Cabins on river ships have to be fairly small, but they are well thought out with adequate storage space, and very good quality amenities. The Quietvox system which is provided free for shore excursions, is really good. Entertainment is always good on these ships, but on this cruise there were two US singer/songwriters plus a large group of their followers, all of whom added to the normal entertainment. The singers gave three concerts during the week, which were fun and enjoyable. There were also local artistes who came on board, and they were also good. If we have one less positive point about Emerald it is that we have done almost all of their itineraries and need them to add more so that we can make more bookings. We love sailing with Emerald. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
I was chosen to perform with a friend on board Brent Burns and 88 Parrot Head fans who went with us. My wife and I have done cruises on bigger ships, this was the first time on a river cruise. From the moment we hit the Amsterdam airport ... Read More
I was chosen to perform with a friend on board Brent Burns and 88 Parrot Head fans who went with us. My wife and I have done cruises on bigger ships, this was the first time on a river cruise. From the moment we hit the Amsterdam airport to the time we departed from Zurich we just had a great time. The ship in one I would choose again and again. The staff were helpful, friendly and seem to always have a smile on their faces as if they enjoyed what they did...a rarity. From our director to the young lady who tended to our cabin, to the front desk, the food staff...all were just outstanding. Our onshore tours were well organized and our tour guides were informative and friendly. We truly enjoyed the mix of being able to relax and yet still see a lot all at the same time. And certainly we enjoyed not having to pack and repack numerous times during this week journey. I would recommend this trip and this ship highly to anyone. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
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