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Sail Date: June 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
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2019
Been wanting to see the Douro for sometime and our travel against recommended Emerald. What a Find! Brilliant modern ship, superbly comfortable, and the Portugese crew were the most smiley and helpful people we have ever come across in any ... Read More
Been wanting to see the Douro for sometime and our travel against recommended Emerald. What a Find! Brilliant modern ship, superbly comfortable, and the Portugese crew were the most smiley and helpful people we have ever come across in any holiday destination. Add to this the beauty of Europe’s most unspoilt and beautiful river and you have all the ingredients of a holiday made in heaven. Go for it! The shore excursions were well chosen and uncrowded, with guides who treated us like adults and kept us entertained as well as informed. The onboard cruise manager, Marie Helena was so friendly, helpful , knowledgeable and unfazed, I suggested she join the queue to be Prime Minister of England. Dining room served excellent local and beautifully presented dinners with waiting staff who were unfailingly friendly and helpful Look no further - if you want to cruise the magical Douro, this has to be the ship for you. Read Less
Sail Date: May 2019
We chose Emerald from a friend's recommendation and were not disappointed. We made our own flight arrangements and flew into Budapest 3 days prior to our departure to meet up with our friends and explore the city. What a ... Read More
We chose Emerald from a friend's recommendation and were not disappointed. We made our own flight arrangements and flew into Budapest 3 days prior to our departure to meet up with our friends and explore the city. What a fabulous destination; steeped in history with fantastic shopping and food. We checked into Emerald on departure day and were warmly greeted. All our luggage showed up in our spacious room and cocktails were served. Awesome start. The food was fresh, innovative, hearty and always personalized with amazing service from every single staff member....without exception The Emerald team made EVERYONE feel they were the most important customer. Take advantage of every excursion and active adventure that Emerald offers. Great tour guides (fluent English), incredible history, scenery and sights in all ports of call. The Emerald Active selections were a lot of fun and helped keep some of the inevitable weight gain at bay. We highly recommend Emerald and the Danube Delights agenda...we would do it all over again. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
We had an amazing time on this cruise. Everything thing runs like clockwork. We were picked up from the airport and then from that minute onwards everything was taken care of, from embarkation to disembarkation. We had to think of nothing. ... Read More
We had an amazing time on this cruise. Everything thing runs like clockwork. We were picked up from the airport and then from that minute onwards everything was taken care of, from embarkation to disembarkation. We had to think of nothing. Which is exactly what I wanted. We were in a Balcony Suite which was was just lovely, we could lower our window down to half way and just sit and enjoy the view. The staff were friendly and helpful nothing was too much trouble. Even when there was an emergency they were willing to send emails for passengers to loved ones who had no way of contacting them. Louis the Cruise Director was so helpful and friendly. The towns that we stopped at were so beautiful. The food was great and we got to try a lot of the local foods. We also went to a Concert in Vienna which was fantastic. Thanks for the memories Emerald Waterways. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
This was our first foray into cruising, as I suffer from very bad motion sickness, an ocean cruise was definitely not on the cards! We were celebrating our 25th wedding anniversary so chose what we hoped was a special cruise on a special ... Read More
This was our first foray into cruising, as I suffer from very bad motion sickness, an ocean cruise was definitely not on the cards! We were celebrating our 25th wedding anniversary so chose what we hoped was a special cruise on a special boat and we were not disappointed. Everything from the overall design to the onboard style and decor was stunning, with a gorgeous pool area (seriously underused on our trip), although for us having it to ourselves was lovely, especially with the poolside bar and comfy chairs. All the staff could not have been friendlier, from the housekeeping to the bar staff, from the waiters to Albert the hotel manager, and not forgetting Michael the cruise director, they were all so helpful and charming with a good sense of humour! On this particular cruise, we liked the choice in activities and excursions available, all targeted at those enjoying their cruise at different levels and pace. So there were always active excursions as well as more gentle ones on offer. Similarly we didn’t always want to go on the coach tours, so when moored up in the great city locations often meant we could do our own thing, and pop back to the ship for lunch/dinner, just like a hotel. That said the organised excursions and tours we did get involved in were all excellent with handpicked informative and entertaining tour guides. The food was simply amazing, chef Stefan was an inspiration with his choices, often regionally themed as we sailed through various places. Wines were similarly excellent, all good quality and lots of it on offer! We loved the galley tour, seeing where our fantastic meals were created. We were really quite emotional (and more than a little embarrassed) on the last night to be presented with a beautifully decorated Anniversary cake in front of the very full restaurant! I am happy to report we will certainly be booking again with Emerald Waterways and more importantly, I did not suffer from even a teeny bit of travel sickness as the ship is so beautifully quiet and very stable, so there is no sensation at all of any movement other than travelling forwards. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: April 2019
I am an airline employee and received information from ID 90 and they shared a special that looked like something we wanted to try. It turned out to be really great and we loved the crew and ship! Would definitely do it again. We took ... Read More
I am an airline employee and received information from ID 90 and they shared a special that looked like something we wanted to try. It turned out to be really great and we loved the crew and ship! Would definitely do it again. We took another couple and they agreed it was a great time! The ship was one of the newest, very pretty and our cabin was very nice. Dining was great and even had Hungarian goulash available when we came back late from our private concert while in Vienna.~ Loved the greeting with the hot towels and our cabin was always made up and cleaned when we returned from being out and about! Would we do it again, YES!!! We were invited to sit the last evening at the captain's table. We found Jasper to be quite experienced and would hope to have him lead the ship again should we have the opportunity to be so lucky to have him. Also shout out to Maria, the head of the cabins and we also thought that Balegio was superb at leading all of us on announcements and directions. Loved it!!! Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
We have just returned from a week long cruise on the Emerald Dawn from Amsterdam to Basel. We were very impressed by the level of service and the facilities. All members of staff from cruise director Michael, the hotel manager Albert, ... Read More
We have just returned from a week long cruise on the Emerald Dawn from Amsterdam to Basel. We were very impressed by the level of service and the facilities. All members of staff from cruise director Michael, the hotel manager Albert, entertainment manager Callum to Bali who cleaned our room were friendly, helpful and worked hard to make the cruise special. The ship The ship was clean, light and spacious with a lounge area which was great for meeting with other guests and for entertainment. There was also tea and coffee available at all times. We didn't use the pool but it did look very inviting and often this was a quieter area on the ship. The sun deck was a favourite place and we luckily had the weather to enjoy it. Our cabin We had a panorama balcony cabin on the upper deck which was kept spotless by the housekeeping staff. The bed was very comfortable and the bathroom, although compact as one would expect on a river cruise boat, was more than adequate. Blinds on the window allowed complete privacy - important if you are moored next to another boat which happened on a couple of occasions. We were surprised by how quiet it was at night, even when cruising, and this was maybe the advantage of an upper deck room. There was a good entertainment system with films available. Dining Breakfast was great with a good selection and there was a choice of a light lunch in the lounge or a more comprehensive meal in the Reflections restaurant. In addition there was afternoon tea. Dinner was a busy affair with all guests seated at the same time to make service easier. However service was very good and wine with the meal was plentiful. I have read some reviews about portion sizes but considering all the other meals available we felt they were more than adequate. The quality of food was on the whole good. We received a drinks package as we had booked early and did enjoy being able to have additional drinks with no extra cost. Excursions We particularly enjoyed our tours of Amsterdam, Koblenz and Strasbourg though Cologne was not such an attractive place. Most of the guides were very knowledgeable and entertaining and the pace of walking was comfortable. There was usually a special group for those that wanted a slower walk. The hike in the Black Forest was a lovely way to complete the cruise and we wished it could have been a bit longer. The beauty of this was that if you wanted a quiet day on the ship you could forego the trips. Overview One of the things that made me choose Emerald was that all tips including those for guides, were included in the price which made the trip stress free. Information about each day was presented in a programme delivered to our room the night before. Embarkation, disembarkation, trips, and events were all well organised and ran smoothly - no mean feat when dealing with nearly 180 passengers. We had a wonderful time and will certainly be considering Emerald for our next cruise. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
Having completed one Emerald cruise on the Danube, and been impressed, we decided a second on the Rhone should follow. We were not disappointed! It was the first of this season but the boat, the crew and all hotel staff were bonded as a ... Read More
Having completed one Emerald cruise on the Danube, and been impressed, we decided a second on the Rhone should follow. We were not disappointed! It was the first of this season but the boat, the crew and all hotel staff were bonded as a very competent, friendly and professional team who constantly demonstrated a desire to please. Accommodation, bar and drinks, onboard entertainment, pool/cinema area and especially the food and accompanying wines were all consistently very good. And of course last but not least, the guided land tours and scenery were in excess of expectations. We had a drinks package and struggled thereafter to spend money on board! My wife regrettably made up for it whilst on shore and we came home with marvellous cheeses, mustards, wines and chocolates! Jana the cruise Director and DD the cruise Entertainment director were superb and got to know all 130 passengers personally and treated them as both individuals and as members of the Team Emerald. A glowing review I know but well deserved Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2018
We chose this cruise to celebrate our 40th wedding anniversary. The cruise exceeded our expectations. There was some concern that due to low water level in the rivers we may have to change ships or go by bus for part of the trip but we did ... Read More
We chose this cruise to celebrate our 40th wedding anniversary. The cruise exceeded our expectations. There was some concern that due to low water level in the rivers we may have to change ships or go by bus for part of the trip but we did go the full trip on the Emerald Dawn. The crew were fantastic, they were so attentive and friendly while being very efficient. The shore excursions all went well with very experienced guides. We did have snow which just made the trip for us. The cabin we had was comfortable enough. The cabin was very clean and well presented. The food for breakfast, lunch and dinner was of a high standard. Our cruise director was seemed to work 20 hours a day as he always seemed to be working away at his desk! Our embarkation went very smoothly. We arranged our own travel after the cruise and our cruise director organised a suitable transport for 5 people for us to the train station. Everything just ran like clockwork. We would definately cruise with Evergreen/Emerald Waterways again. Read Less
Sail Date: September 2018
This was our first river cruise. It exceeded our expectations. The Duoro river and river valley were beautiful. Never knew there were so many grapes grown in this region. Our ship was in excellent condition and our standard cabin was what ... Read More
This was our first river cruise. It exceeded our expectations. The Duoro river and river valley were beautiful. Never knew there were so many grapes grown in this region. Our ship was in excellent condition and our standard cabin was what I expected. All the meals were great and the wine never ending. We also purchased the premium beverage package which was not a bad value. The ship staff really made this trip memorable. Some of the people that did an exceptional job were: Maria, cruise director; Manuel, hotel director; Cornell, restaurant director; Claudia, guest services; Miguel and Tiago, bar service; and not but least, our housekeeper, Vanessa. Each of them worked tirelessly to make this cruise one of our best. We enjoyed the shore excursions included and opted to purchase two others that were worthwhile. Did a dinner one night at a working vineyard that was a lot of fun. Did you know that many wineries in the Duoro Valley actually stomp grapes with their feet for the premium wines? Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2018
My wife and I have just returned home from our Rhine Cruise on the Emerald Sky. Due to a ship swap due to low water levels, we sailed on the Emerald Sky instead of the Emerald Destiny as we were originally due to be on. All I can say ... Read More
My wife and I have just returned home from our Rhine Cruise on the Emerald Sky. Due to a ship swap due to low water levels, we sailed on the Emerald Sky instead of the Emerald Destiny as we were originally due to be on. All I can say is a huge "Thank you" to all the hard working Emerald Sky's crew/staff and the Emerald Cruise hospitality team onboard the Sky for making our trip memorable. All of the tours went seamlessly and were well thought out and very informative, all the tour guides knowlegable and able to answer all questions about our visits to the various places etc. The food was 1st class (Andraz the chef we had met before on the Emerald Sun in 2016) from the Buffet Breakfast and Lunch, to the Wonderful Dinners each evening, served extremely well by the extremely hard working waiters and waitresses. Widodo our cabin Steward worked very hard and kept our Panorama Balcony Suite well stocked with water and consumables. Many thanks to Balasz our Cruise Director who also worked very hard organising everything in port and the entertainment on board the Emerald Sky. Also keeping all the tour port talks interesting and happening ontime. This was our 3rd cruise with Emerald waterways and we are looking forward to joining them again in April 2019 in Amsterdam for our trip around Holland and Belgium. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
It was all inclusive the cruise staff were friendly and excellent. The cabin was very good the bed was very comfortable.On suite was great shower was great always plenty of hot water.All of the trips were good and the local guides were ... Read More
It was all inclusive the cruise staff were friendly and excellent. The cabin was very good the bed was very comfortable.On suite was great shower was great always plenty of hot water.All of the trips were good and the local guides were friendly and very knowledgeable.One of the highlights was the Concert in Vienna superb! The balcony suite cabin was great apart from the cigarette smoke drifted in when we had our window open shame the ship wasn’t no smoking. Apart from that everything was very good. We thought the meals were first class from breakfast to the five course evening meal. The all inclusive drinks package and the tips all included was brilliant. The whole package was very well organised and from the cruise director to our cabin cleaner were second to none. Most enjoyable five star service and ship was very good. Cruising down the Danube was very magnificent. Thank you again to everyone. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
We chose this cruise because we wanted to experience a river cruise. We were pleasantly surprised by Emerald's ease of embarkation. We were met at the airport and taken to our ship by motor coach. Upon arriving we were treated like ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we wanted to experience a river cruise. We were pleasantly surprised by Emerald's ease of embarkation. We were met at the airport and taken to our ship by motor coach. Upon arriving we were treated like royalty with drinks and a light lunch provided. We were then escorted to our rooms, which I must say were spotlessly clean and certainly large enough to accommodate all of our belongings. The staff could not have been more friendlier or helpful. The entertainment was wonderful. Everything from a Master Chef demonstration to Disco night! All the excursions were very well planned and we enjoyed each location and the tours. The food was beyond our expectations! Our wine glasses were never empty! Disembarkation was very well planned and we were taken to airport with plenty of time to spare. I would highly recommend Emerald as there service and care was beyond our expectations! Lovely crew on the Emerald Dawn! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2018
It was our Emerald wedding anniversary so wanted to go on the Emerald Radiance to celebrate on the day. We were presented with Champagne, chocolates and a bouquet of flowers from the company which was a pleasant surprise. We were met at ... Read More
It was our Emerald wedding anniversary so wanted to go on the Emerald Radiance to celebrate on the day. We were presented with Champagne, chocolates and a bouquet of flowers from the company which was a pleasant surprise. We were met at the airport and transported to the dock at Porto with relevant ease and escorted to our cabin after being greeted on board by Manuel. All the staff were very friendly and helpful nothing was too much trouble. The Radiance was a beautiful ship and a pleasure to be on. Cabin was a little noisy when starting the engines and the shower was a little small to get in and out for a large person but very clean. Excursions were very informative and not too long. Entertainment was varied and mainly good especially the Quiz nights and we were luckyto win both of them. I would definitely travel with them again. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2018
It was on my Mum’s bucket list of cruises she wanted to do. I had seen the itinerary and liked it but when we booked we were unfamiliar with Emerald Waterways. We were not disappointed in any way. Mum who had cruised with Viking ... Read More
It was on my Mum’s bucket list of cruises she wanted to do. I had seen the itinerary and liked it but when we booked we were unfamiliar with Emerald Waterways. We were not disappointed in any way. Mum who had cruised with Viking before said she actually preferred Emerald because it was less formal but 5* quality. We felt relaxed, and comfortable on board and the crew went out of their way to make sure that we had everything we could possibly desire. The restaurant was superb and the food exquisite. Everything was beautifully presented and having unlimited Portuguese wines that were carefully selected every evening meant we could sample everything. The barbecue lunch on deck was fantastic with all the crew joining in (I even danced with the head chef Nuno and Manuel the Hotel Manager) The bar staff were all lovely and took time to chat and get to know you. We all learned a little about each other which made us feel like part of their family. The cruise director Luis kept us well informed daily on what was happening on and off the ship, so we didn’t miss any of the things we wanted to do. The gala night and farewell dinners were gorgeous and gave us the opportunity to have a chat with the captain and show our appreciation for all the crew (all 38 of them) We loved the cruise. Portugal itself was lovely but it was the ship and crew that made the holiday special. I would definitely recommend Emerald Waterways and hope to sail with them again. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2018
Friends picked this cruise for us ! Overall, our trip from Bucharest to Budapest was excellent. The ship had great staff with excellent food & wine, both notably with local origins. Our cabin was just 20 steps from the pool. ... Read More
Friends picked this cruise for us ! Overall, our trip from Bucharest to Budapest was excellent. The ship had great staff with excellent food & wine, both notably with local origins. Our cabin was just 20 steps from the pool. There were a few minor problems: -air conditioning was sometimes poor, most notably in busy restaurant at dinner -WIFI was intermittent, we lost WIFI for 3-4 days along the Danube- most frustrating ! -The map for Ruese, Bulgaria was incorrect; the ship was berthed off map; our walking tour was most interesting though and worthy of our efforts. People most helpful & friendly. The itinerary included many interesting locations, with much history to see & enjoy. The guides were excellent. -The wine tasting near Vidin was excellent. -more time could be spent in Bucharest & Budapest on our itinerary, Overall, an excellent itinerary and an excellent ship, the Emerald Sun. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2018
This cruise aboard Emerald Sky, Budapest to Amsterdam was beyond our wildest expectations. We'd certainly consider taking this cruise again. The organization had to overcome some exceptional circumstances, which they did ... Read More
This cruise aboard Emerald Sky, Budapest to Amsterdam was beyond our wildest expectations. We'd certainly consider taking this cruise again. The organization had to overcome some exceptional circumstances, which they did magnificently. The crew were friendly, courteous and professional, non more so thenwhen dining or wining.Shore excursions were well planned with excellent guides, also allowing some free time. The Emerald Sky itself could not be faulted. We'd suggest allowing yourself a few days in Budapest before embarkation to allow exploration of this wonderful city. A friendly greeting (or farewell) was afforded by the duty crew each time we entered or left the Emerald Sky, who at all times had their 'guests' welfare as their major concern. The tour director also did a magnificent job keeping us right up to date and informing us of the highlights that we could expect in each port visited.We'd recommend Emerald's 'Splendours of Europe' cruise to anyone and have done so to friends and relatives. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2018
After much research for our first river cruise, we decided to book with Emerald. While, I usually book my own vacations, I did go through a travel agent this time as I have never been to Europe. I did book my own airfare and hotel ... Read More
After much research for our first river cruise, we decided to book with Emerald. While, I usually book my own vacations, I did go through a travel agent this time as I have never been to Europe. I did book my own airfare and hotel pre-cruise but did the Emerald add-on with the hotel and transfer at the end of the cruise which was well worth the price. My wife and I left mid-June and spent five nights in Munich before taking a train to Zurich for four nights. Using trains and trams was a new experience for us and while we were a little intimidated at first, we quickly adapted. We decided to visit the Zurich airport the day before pickup to make sure that it was easy to find the pickup spot. Pickup and transfer to the ship was easy and on time. Passengers were primarily from England, USA, Canda, but also included Ireland, Scotland, and Australia, Average age would be early 60s. We are early 50s and were on the younger side. We did see two families with teenagers. I think pricing for River Cruises, in general, makes this situation. For the price of a River Cruise, we could have done about three Caribbean cruises. The ship was easy to navigate compared to large Caribbean ships only have three floors with one main dining area and one lounge. The trip from Basel to Amsterdam was wonderful. We couldn't have asked for better weather! Each day we had city tours, sometimes we would have to take a bus but not all the time. All the tours were excellent and were done by local guides with the exception of Cologne which was just OK. The guides on this tour were much younger and a little inexperienced IMHO. But the tours were only two hours so we had plenty of time to do our own sightseeing if we wanted. We had French Balcony cabin 220 which was probably the nicest cabin we ever stayed in. This was a standard balcony cabin which we paid a premium for the view and the window that slid down. However, if we do another river cruise we would opt for the lowest level and use the money saved for upgraded airfare. Other than sleeping, we really didn't spend much time in the cabin. Food Breakfast had a light offering of food in the lounge area and a standard buffet with omelette station in the main dining room. Lunch in the main dining room was buffet style as well and didn't change much from day to day. You could order off the menu which was the same items that were on the buffet which really didn't make sense with the exception of a few Classic items: steak and chicken breast and Cesar salad. The dinner menu changed nightly with meat, fish, and vegetarian options with the Classic items also available. Food was good but many felt that the portion sizes were too small with the exception of the Captains Farewell dinner. Same issue with dessert. We noticed the salad dressings, especially at lunch, looked and tasted watered down. I have never seen such thin blue cheese dressing, but then I am from Buffalo and we are used to thick Blue Cheese! The late night snack at 10:30 was disappointing. It mainly consisted of leftover desserts or appetizers from earlier in the day and the portions again were small. We stayed off ship one evening for dinner in port. Emerald includes beer and wine at lunch and dinner. Most of them were very good and the servers made sure your glass was filled. I had a wine/beer drink package for 10 Euros/day which was a great deal compared to Caribbean cruises. There was another package for around 22 Euro for spirits as well. Drinks prices are reasonable and depending upon your drinking habits, it may not be beneficial. Bar service was fair to good with the exception of Svetlana who was the best. We usually tried to sit in her area as we knew she did a great job! Emerald should let passengers know that there are drink packages available at check-in. While I was asked by a server if I had a drink package when I ordered my first glass of wine, a couple we met didn't know there were packages available until the last night! The packages are listed in the lounge menu book but most people usually know what they want when they walk into a bar and therefore didn't pick them up. We didn't use the complimentary bikes or go to movie night in the pool area. The pool was nice though! This was a great cruise and absolutely loved it. We met a lot of nice people from all over the world! While there is room for improvement, we would consider Emerald again for a future cruise. Their all-inclusive package and payment structure is the main reason why we chose them. Another company wanted full payment almost 11 months in advance which we felt wasn't reasonable. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2018
We selected the River Douro cruise because of love of Portugal and Spain.After doing a little research,we selected the Emerald Radiance and we were delighted with our choice.The ship was built in 2017,and everything was spick and span..The ... Read More
We selected the River Douro cruise because of love of Portugal and Spain.After doing a little research,we selected the Emerald Radiance and we were delighted with our choice.The ship was built in 2017,and everything was spick and span..The ship had been built to navigate the Dour and to pass through the locks. We were greeted on arrival by Manuel,the Hotel Manager and his team,and from that moment we were made to feel very honoured guests.Our cabin was a Panorama Balcony Suite and although not large,was more than adequate for our needs.The wall of glass that opened up to further enjoy the landscape .Every inch of space had been used creatively to enhance the experience. The food and drink was of an exceptional high standard under the watchful eye of the Executive Chef Nounou and his team.Special mention to Manuel,our waiter who always went the extra mile.I and the rest of the passengers enjoyed the experience of sampling both local and international dishes,and to sample the wonderful wines of the Douro region. Special mention must go to Luis,the cruise director.We were fortunate to have him with us for several excursions and he was both informative and amusing.The coaches and the drivers were excellent. River Cruises are not cheap but we felt that we were given 5 star tratment from start to finish.We also enjoyed the company of people of different nationalities,and this certainly added to the enjoyment of the cruise. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2018
The destiny is a beautiful river boat with modern layout and appeal. From the beginning the “all in” travel from Budapest to Passau, Will filled with planned guided tours that gave you history and character from a variety of towns and ... Read More
The destiny is a beautiful river boat with modern layout and appeal. From the beginning the “all in” travel from Budapest to Passau, Will filled with planned guided tours that gave you history and character from a variety of towns and cities, including Melk, Durnstien, Linz, Vienna, Passau, with picturesque coats of the Danube and classical Bavarian, Austrian, and Hungarian towns. We were entrained by the Vienna imperial orchestra, the concert was outstanding. The food and wine was good and regional, amazing for serving over 150 passengers. Most of all from the crew to the cabin management and the hospitality staff were top extremely friendly and the organist was top rate (he was a professional opera singer). Can not say enough positive things about our trip. Budapest at night cruise was breath taking. Vienna (my first time) has great buildings and museums, Melk Abbey was so over the top, but still strikingly beautiful. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2018
We chose this cruise having been on the one with Emerald from Budapest to Nuremberg last year. The reason for this was that we thought it would be completely different, and we were not disappointed. The pick up and the return from the ... Read More
We chose this cruise having been on the one with Emerald from Budapest to Nuremberg last year. The reason for this was that we thought it would be completely different, and we were not disappointed. The pick up and the return from the airport was excellent and it gave a chance to meet up with fellow travellers on the same trip. No need to worry about the cases it was all taken care of and the next time we saw them was in our cabin. This is a new ship and it had everything to ensure that we were going to enjoy the cruise. Whilst we did not pay any extra for an upgrade in cabins what we had was more than adequate. The light lunch on arrival at midday was a warm welcome served by excellent staff members. The chef and his team provided meals of memorable experiences, complemented by the attention to detail of the bar staff providing unlimited choices of drinks.The entertainment and activities on board from tile painting to a visit to the chefs galley was appreciated,live music, team games and the barbecue on the top deck, could not be faulted.The shore excursions were spot on, approximately one and a half hours with the guides and then left to your own devises to meet up later to return to the boat. All of the above could not be carried out unless you had a dedicated team of staff members, and it is thanks to this that we have already booked with Emerald for the Islands of Dalmatia Cruise 2019. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2018
Price & itinerary were what we were looking for. Also had read that the Radiance was a new ship (built in 2017). Ship very modern and clean with much chrome & glass. Found that layout of public areas (restaurant & ... Read More
Price & itinerary were what we were looking for. Also had read that the Radiance was a new ship (built in 2017). Ship very modern and clean with much chrome & glass. Found that layout of public areas (restaurant & bar/lounge) were quite crowded, with furniture almost on top of each other. Food was pretty good, although some foods at breakfast buffet were cold when they should not have been. Service was very good, as were shore excursions and local guides. Cruise tour Director (Luis Gomes) was excellent. Cabin layout was disappointing as it was advertised as "balcony". However, turned out to be simply a pull down half picture window. Overall cabin layout was very crowded, with access to bathroom quite restricted. Much prefer balcony cabin layout on AMA Waterway ships; which are true "French Balconies". Overall, cruise was enjoyable as onboard service was very good as were the excursions and local tour guides. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2018
Germany, Austria, Slovakia and Hungary. The flight was good to Munich but then after waiting over an hour we finally got on the coach. We were then told we would be taken to a hotel in Nuremberg to wait while the ship was ready. So a ... Read More
Germany, Austria, Slovakia and Hungary. The flight was good to Munich but then after waiting over an hour we finally got on the coach. We were then told we would be taken to a hotel in Nuremberg to wait while the ship was ready. So a two and half hour bus ride. We then had to sit in a hotel restaurant for an hour or so before getting the bus to the ship. Sandwiches and cakes were provided but it was a bit boring waiting around. Back on the coach and it was another half hour before arriving at the Ship. This was very disappointing. After arriving at the ship the check in was slick - and I mean really slick. A full coach load into check in was dealt with amazing efficiency. We were told to drop the cases and a crew member showed us to our cabin and explained everything about it. A few minutes later the cases arrived at our cabin. There were plenty of draws in the cabin and a place was found for all our stuff. The cabin itself was compact but very good. The beds were extremely comfortable. We went for a drink on the front deck and a waiter explained that there were several drinks packages that could be bought. This was not a pressure sell like on most ships. It was just an explanation. We happened to be sat with a Canadian couple who were also going to order. Me and the other guy looked at each other. I said well that’s us with the premium drink package (which entitles you to all drinks except champagne and the real top end wines for €22 per day). He replied “that’s us too”. We both went to reception and bought them. Drinks in all the bars are waiter service. The wine is excellent quality and is changed daily to reflect where you are. The dining experience is wonderful. The dinner is a la cart. Four courses every evening and five on captains special nights. Everyone on our cruise dressed up smart casual for every evening meal. This was great as we like to dress up in smart attire. The food itself was very very good. Breakfast and lunch are buffet style. I know some reviews have said the portions are small at dinner but that is what you expect with high end dinning and four courses we never ever felt let down. The dinners tasted superb and we went mostly with the chefs specials. The wine served at lunch and dinner every day was good quality and reflected the region you were in. This was served all through the meals with no restrictions and it seemed difficult to empty your glass before it being refilled. Evening entertainment was mainly with Gianni the pianist. With a few local special treats added like Umpa Band and Hungarian dancers etc. It was very entertaining and not too loud so you talk with other people without having to shout. I must mention the crew and the onboard guests. I think about 55 crew. All who were very pleasant not pushy and seemed genuinely pleased to be looking after their guests. The captain and his officers were outstanding and very friendly. The captain was very approachable and hardworking. On the last day at disembarkation we saw him shifting suitcases across the gangway along with other crew and also other officers. The guests on board about 150 were very friendly. Mostly British and Canadian with some Aussies and just a few other nationalities. We made many friends (especially with the Canadian couple we first met on board). It made the whole atmosphere of the cruise seem like one happy family. Every evening before dinner the cruise director “Wes” gave a run through of the next day’s itinerary which was very informative. The chef explained how they cooked the today’s special menu. The captain sometimes gave a bit of a talk too. This was not boring and an excellent way of letting guests know about their area being visited and what to expect on the tours. A free self serve coffee machine was open 24 hours. The coffee from it was with fresh ground beans in the machine. The coffee, cappuccino, latte etc was hot and very good. The trips were mostly inclusive. The guides at each port were very knowledgeable and sometimes very funny. Very well organised with a small radio device with earphone. You could hear the guide all the time. Each day you could choose which speed to walk at so no one was left out. Some excursions like the bike tour and a couple of hikes were explained what fitness level you should be. This was excellent. The guests that went on the extra paid for tours all said it was well worth the money. We went on the Vienna concert tour. The music was outstanding. Our only complaint was the seats were not very comfortable. The most exceptional night was at Budapest. The captain took the ship along the Danube. In the dark for over an hour with all the buildings lit-up along the waterfront was just spectacular. All the guests were oohing and aarring at the sights. Free special drinks were served by the waiting staff and soft music like the Bolero etc was being played through the speaker system. Everyone was on the top outside deck taking photos. This was an excellent end to a fantastic cruise. Disembarkation was as slick as coming on board. We were told what time to put our cases outside the cabin in the morning. A list had been given to all guests with coloured case tags for different times. We were told to vacate the cabins by 8:30am and wait in the lounge with free coffee until the coach arrived. The cases were lined up outside the coach and all you had to do was point out your case and it was put on the bus. And guess who loaded our case - well it was the captain himself mucking in as usual. Anyone who is wondering whether they would have a good holiday with the Emerald Sky should just book it. I would certainly go on another cruise with Emerald. It was superb value for money and an unforgettable experience. Read Less
Sail Date: May 2018
OUTSTANDING: This was the first time we have cruised with Emerald and we were extremely pleased all the way around. The staff was incredible! They continually were friendly, helpful, and attentive. Within a few days, the knew many of ... Read More
OUTSTANDING: This was the first time we have cruised with Emerald and we were extremely pleased all the way around. The staff was incredible! They continually were friendly, helpful, and attentive. Within a few days, the knew many of the passengers names and preferences. The ships captain and staff members were also very visible and welcoming. Our cruise director, Darren, was quite good. He was knowledgeable and funny and offered a variety of activities. We were on the ship Liberte, which we were told had been christened the year before. It was excellent in every way. The cabins were designed with maximum efficiency and the bathroom shower was incredible (i.e. roomy with solid water pressure). The daily morning tours were typical but very good. All of the guides were knowledge and spoke multiple languages. The technology/earphones worked perfectly. We went on a few extra excursions and a couple of the optional Emerald Fit excursions and were extremely pleased. For meals, we ate at the "light" breakfast, which was more than enough. Other guests indicated the "regular" breakfast was outstanding. Lunch for us was always in the French countryside, but again guest remarked that the lunch buffet was excellent. We did, however, enjoy the evening meals and were very pleased about the quality, taste, presentation and variety of the food served. The chef never disappointed. Top were the various sauces on the seafood, beef or chicken entries; the soups and of course, the desserts. ONLY AREA FOR IMPROVEMENT EMBARKATION: The only area for improvement was at the Nice airport for the transportation to the ship. The instruction indicated to meet the Emerald representative at car rental hub near Tubbs Restaurant. At the airport, there were immediate signs for the car rental hub, but we soon found out there were multiple car rental hubs in the airport and we had just dragged all of the luggage to the wrong one. When asking for assistance at the first car rental hub on where we should go, they were not helpful. We ended up putting the Tubbs Restaurant into the iPhone maps, and found our way through the phone GPS. So I would update the instruction to further define the particular car rental hub or direct via the Tubbs Restaurant first. Once we found the Tubbs Restaurant, the Emerald rep was there and visible. The second issue was related to the chartered transportation to the ship. When booking our trip, we were informed that we had to arrive at the Nice airport in early or mid-morning, as the complimentary charter bus transportation would leave at 12:30 pm for the 2 plus hour drive to the ship's port. When we found the Emerald rep and checked in, she told us the charter bus would be delayed and would not leave until closer to 2 pm. This required us, and many other couples, to sit some 3 plus hours in the airport before taking the 2 hour bus ride. What many of us found frustrating, is when we did leave the airport, Emerald had chartered two buses. So, it would have been nice if one had left on time and the other remained for the later arrivals instead of delaying everyone. Other than the issues at embarkation, we would highly recommend Emerald Waterways. Our cruise was the Sensations of Southern France from Arles to Lyon and it was perfect in so many ways! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2018
After reading many reviews we chose Emerald Waterways for the value, amenities, and itinerary. They did not disappoint. We were picked up at the airport and had seamless transfers for each leg of the trip. We added the pre-cruise package ... Read More
After reading many reviews we chose Emerald Waterways for the value, amenities, and itinerary. They did not disappoint. We were picked up at the airport and had seamless transfers for each leg of the trip. We added the pre-cruise package in Zurich and Lucerne. Stayed in great hotels and had a fabulous guide accompany us throughout. Embarkation and disembarkation were fast and painless. The Emerald Sun is a beautiful, modern river ship that is well maintained and exceptionally clean. All of the staff were friendly and went out of their way to be helpful. 182 guests to 46 staff- not a bad ratio! Our room was very comfortable, with a surprising amount of storage room. Great shower. Great bed. In addition to the usual items, we found robes, slippers, an umbrella, and even walking sticks in our room. The ship includes an indoor, heated swimming pool (with optional current) at the stern that looks out to the river through a floor to ceiling window. The floor of the pool comes up to created a movie theater on some evenings. Emerald brings bicycles along for passenger who wish to use them in port. There was a nice variety on the menu and all of the food was beautifully presented. Some dishes could have used a bit more flavor, but that was our only complaint. Wine and beer were complimentary with lunch and dinner. Each port included an excursion and we found each of our guides well informed as well as entertaining. We loved that fact that our entire trip was included in their pricing-even the tips! We felt we got a wonderful value as well as a memorable trip! Read Less
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