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87 Avalon Waterways Avalon Tapestry II Cruise Reviews

Not my first cruise (39), nor my first river cruise (4th)...I have not cruised with Avalon before, but hope to again. The boat, crew, rooms and food were very good. The tours were wonderful and well organized. Danielle was the tour ... Read More
Not my first cruise (39), nor my first river cruise (4th)...I have not cruised with Avalon before, but hope to again. The boat, crew, rooms and food were very good. The tours were wonderful and well organized. Danielle was the tour director and she did an excellent job. We were super lucky with weather as we had sunshine all week which is unusual for Normandy area. I had a cabin (single supplement) mid floor with full size panoramic doors that completely opened. This was very nice. The rooms are bright and cheery, love the bed placement facing the window. The bath had granite counter and marble floors and shower. Nice in size and well appointed. The dining room food and service was very good. The chef was very picky and wanted to make sure people were happy. The wine flowed at dinner - this was included. They also had a choice of non alcoholic wine. At lunch you could eat in the lounge or bar area with a similar menu that was self service. The upper deck was super nice but since we were so busy during the day we did not use it. I suspect on sailing days in very nice weather it is used for bar and food. Read Less
Sail Date April 2015
Being first timers overseas we missed a few bases. Paris arrival should have been a few days before our departure on the Tapestry II, but that's our fault.. Leaving the states late in the day, our flights and arrival were uneventful ... Read More
Being first timers overseas we missed a few bases. Paris arrival should have been a few days before our departure on the Tapestry II, but that's our fault.. Leaving the states late in the day, our flights and arrival were uneventful and Avalon rep was waiting with a huge smile upon landing in Paris. (Note: for those with walking difficulty, extremely important for you to make arrangements for transportation to main terminal from your gate - very long walk.) When transported from hotel to Tapestry II, our guide was no where to be found until approximately 10 minutes before the bus pulled up. We did not see her at the Avalon table in the hotel at all. Also noted, a tour group with 30 people were loaded prior to the others and there was no exceptions made for a gentleman who was disabled . He was not offered early loading. Cabin was perfect size, plenty of room under the bed for suitcases. Wardrobe huge with plenty of shelves, hangers, extra blankets . Bed was great size, a little firm, but we simply followed the instructions on the pre-printed "note" left on bed to have steward adjust by next night's retirement. Great Pillows! Loved the NO balcony layout, easy opening on the doors to outside, even though a little cold while sailing we enjoyed this new effect, enabling us to sit at our table or sofa to see the sights. Bathroom, shower, vanity all in great taste and roomy! Lighted makeup mirror a plus ! Plenty of storage space there and throughout the entire cabin! Optional linen and towel change always appreciated !. Only had a problem with 'not having washcloths'. Maid seemed to forget them twice ... Nightly turn down service is definitely a favorite of mine ! Dining and food choices were superb. Loved Local recipes suggested. Selection of wines were very good, but Volume / Size of drinks purchased from menu during cocktail and happy hour should be adjusted. Service was good to excellent, easy to stick with same waiter, same table if you dine at same hour each nite. Breakfast was always a treat - such a variety of local foods and fruits. The convenience of the Aft Lounge was appreciated for quiet time, reading, games, with self service for juices, latte's and cappuccino. Due to weather, we did not experience time on the Sky Deck. Our Cruise Director was just wonderful.. Very knowledgeable, accommodating ! Great sense of humor ! We had engine problems in 1st day of sailing and he worked overtime to adjust everyone's itinerary if needed. He helped us change an excursion with 'another' travel team in London prior to our disembarking in Paris. The only disappointment we had was regarding our excursions. The length of walking is NOT emphasized enough in the brochure. The walk from the parking lot to the cemetery and Omaha Beach were almost to much for a few. No scooters or carts were available or offered to anyone who may have wanted them. No Museum stops were scheduled. The bathrooms on the buses are terribly small and inconvenient. We had to buy something at the restaurant we stopped at to use the restroom. Maybe more time should be allotted on some of the excursions to allow tourists to shop or explore more with the guide. We did take a 'slower paced' tour into one small town but then had to climb 2 flights of stairs to get to the main road.. All in All, after having cruised 8 times on major ships, we have found we prefer the smaller more intimate setting for some future traveling. All of the Staff on Tapestry II were very sweet, knowledgeable and accommodating. We will definitely be sailing with Avalon again! Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
We loved this cruise and it’s excursions but the pace was so grueling. If we’ve never been to an area we want to do the excursions but it was exhausting. It would be nice to have a couple of days built in where we don’t feel like we ... Read More
We loved this cruise and it’s excursions but the pace was so grueling. If we’ve never been to an area we want to do the excursions but it was exhausting. It would be nice to have a couple of days built in where we don’t feel like we have to go go go. Just cruise and relax. With that in mind you’d need to add something to do that makes staying on board worth while. The food was excellent, Our excursions were great and the guides were very friendly and knowledgeable. The entertainment was just so so on board and there was nothing to do on board if you were not on an excursion. Absolutely nothing. Our room staff, Waite staff and all other staff were excellent. The gym left a lot to be desired and there was no spa on board. So yes I recommend but not without words to let folks know that you will be expected to go at a grueling pace and there is not much extra on board. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
We have always been independent travelers and so were surprised to enjoy the Tapestry so much. Jean-Loup, the cruise director, was tireless as he assured everything was handled beautifully. The housekeeping was excellent, the food very ... Read More
We have always been independent travelers and so were surprised to enjoy the Tapestry so much. Jean-Loup, the cruise director, was tireless as he assured everything was handled beautifully. The housekeeping was excellent, the food very nice, the staff was helpful. My husband and I are both art lovers and wish the boat would replace the identical poorly designed flower paintings with black and white images of Avalon's destinations. We wish all the cruise directors from other lines would take time to meet and assure that each is Not following the same itinerary so every cruise and bus tour descends on Giverny simultaneously. We have been there often in September and, unfortunately, this trip there were thousands of visitors who all arrived within a few minutes of each other making that excursion of one of our favorite places unbearable. A little pre-planning with business colleagues would enable a great visit for everyone. Because we wanted to incorporate all three options for tours one day, we asked Jean-Loup for a driver. Four of us were met at the boat by an excellent tour guide/driver. We saw both the English and the American WWII sites and the Bayeux tapestry. That day was exceptional as buses are not usually a first choice for us. The cabin was spacious with great windows. We wish the on board musician had been better as the tinny-sounding drum machine and depressed lounge music could have been replaced with an upbeat, fun professional who would have encouraged us to be in the lounge rather than steer clear any time he was there. The lectures were great, the pastry chef, and the local musicians brought on board were fun events. Thank you for a lovely cruise. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
We really enjoyed our first river cruise. The main reason we picked this cruise was the Normandy destination and history lectures. They were excellent. We are experienced Ocean Cruise people and frankly the river cruise is little too laid ... Read More
We really enjoyed our first river cruise. The main reason we picked this cruise was the Normandy destination and history lectures. They were excellent. We are experienced Ocean Cruise people and frankly the river cruise is little too laid back for me. However, if we do another we would choose Avalon. Great service, excellent food and really nice people. We loved our Royal Suite but have no way to compare to other lines. Except for the lectures we found the little bit of entertainment that was provided just average. Also since there is no gambling there is not much to do when you return from excursions. The people at the reception desk were very helpful and although I need A wheelchair to go off the ship, they made that experience seamless. Our Cruise Director was very helpful and did a nice job keeping people informed of activities. We were a little disappointed that many activities started late but that was not an issue with most people. Overall we had a really great time. Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
We chose this cruise because it was a themed World War 2 history cruise. If we hadn't taken a private tour before getting onboard, I would have left disappointed. The guest lecturer, Nigel Stewart, was able to give us a broad overview ... Read More
We chose this cruise because it was a themed World War 2 history cruise. If we hadn't taken a private tour before getting onboard, I would have left disappointed. The guest lecturer, Nigel Stewart, was able to give us a broad overview of the history of the war that happened in the areas we were traveling. He stayed on ship all week and you could ask him questions pretty much at any time. The disappointment of the WW2 history was in the tours that were offered. There is a 2 1/2 hour travel time involved each way, so I understand that their is only so much time. But, we felt rushed during the tour because we had to get back on the bus and go again. So much to see and learn and we left feeling that we needed to go back and see things again because of what we missed. The ship was very nice and clean. A very modern ship. Other than watching the world float by or sitting in the sun, not much else to do on board. The WIFI is spotty at best unless you sit in the lounge area. The food was disappointing, but was okay. If possible, we ate in the lounge every night as they served the same food as in the main dinner area. It was in sample size portions so that was nice to try the different selections. The crew was very nice all around. They made the trip as they were always trying to exceed your expectations. The captain was nice and was always around. Our room was very nice, clean, and felt bigger than it was. We were lucky to not be docked next to other boats all the time, so we had a decent view in the different docking locations. Overall, I would sail with Avalon again, but do things more on my own for tours. Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
This was our first river cruise, so we did not know what to expect. We were familiar with Globus, Avalon’s parent company, and had expectations based on that experience. Our pre-cruise hotel, Pullman Paris Tour Eiffel, was very nice ... Read More
This was our first river cruise, so we did not know what to expect. We were familiar with Globus, Avalon’s parent company, and had expectations based on that experience. Our pre-cruise hotel, Pullman Paris Tour Eiffel, was very nice and was conveniently located a block from the Eiffel Tower, cafes, and a metro stop. The river was only a couple of blocks away and an easy walk.. There is a pedestrian walkway around much of the river. Avalon’s logistics were very good, getting us to the ship, to/from excursions, and transfers to the train or airport, flawlessly. I enjoyed having fewer guests onboard in a more intimate shipboard environment which allows for easier socializing and making new friends. Cabin size is about what you have on ocean cruise ships. Often we had another river cruise boat nested beside us, so you have to be mindful of that when opening your drapes (make sure you are adequately dressed). Food was outstanding in quality and presentation but we prefer to eat earlier than the 7-7:30 pm 4 course dinner start time. They offered a light dinner fare in the loung which we opted for much of the week but the menu for this option remained the same for the week. I understand Avalon’s dining options for 2019 will offer much better flexibility and options. Crew members were also outstanding, most very personable and engaging. If you needed anything you just needed to ask the crew, and if they could accommodate you, they did. A few, in particular, remembered what we wanted to drink with lunch and supper and brought it to us without having to ask. We were disappointed that there was not much to see along the Seine River landscape as we sailed from Paris to Normandy- a lot of permanently moored river house boats and green landscape. Included and optional excursions were also well-executed. Much of the week required early rising to make the typical 8:30 am departure time. If we do another river cruise, we will definitely look to Avalon first. Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
We wanted a cruise that included both Paris & Normandy, so this one fit the bill. The ship is by far the best we have ever sailed. Although you don't spend much time in your cabin, the fact it was so relaxing, roomy, and had ... Read More
We wanted a cruise that included both Paris & Normandy, so this one fit the bill. The ship is by far the best we have ever sailed. Although you don't spend much time in your cabin, the fact it was so relaxing, roomy, and had luxurious bathroom made it that much better. Dining was great. There was excellent variety, and the complimentary wine was good. On a previous cruise with another line, the complimentary wine was poor, and you had to purchase something better. The guides on all the shore excursions were very knowledgeable. We learned a lot about D-Day and the artists. Our only complaint is the trip to Montmartre. We felt it was expensive for what we received. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
This was our first trip with Avalon Waterways River Cruise on their tour the Grand France Northbound from Cote d' Azur to the beaches of Normandy. I discussed my cruise on the first ship, Poetry 11 from Cote d' Azur to Pairs in a ... Read More
This was our first trip with Avalon Waterways River Cruise on their tour the Grand France Northbound from Cote d' Azur to the beaches of Normandy. I discussed my cruise on the first ship, Poetry 11 from Cote d' Azur to Pairs in a separate post. We had the same suite number that we had on the Poetry 11. The decor was very similar except for the colour scheme. As I mentioned in the other review, we were very impressed with the layout of the cabin and especially the balcony like arrangement. The staff were outstanding and really tried to make your trip experience enjoyable. The food was superb and a lot warmer to the taste than the Poetry 11 fare. From the beginning to the end we felt pampered. Yvette, our Cruise Director, was on top of things at all times and even arranged an easy walking group which my husband I joined quite often since we have knee problems. Rain was an issue on this leg of the trip as well. Giverny, Monet's country estate, was one such day. The pictures were beautiful with the overcast effect but the rain made lingering not an option. There were two things, on this particular part of the trip we were disappointed with. First, not realizing this was the anniversary of D Day and the beaches of Normandy, we encountered throughout the trip, derogatory remarks made about the Germans during the Second World War especially by the tour guides. The only exception was Martin, who was our excellent tour guide of Normandy and Giverny. His presentation was totally unbiased. My husband was born in German. His father was too old to participate in the war and he was seven years old when the war ended. To hear expressions like, "under the Nazi boot" upset him and now he realized why the guides were not that friendly, bordering on rudeness. I felt the same way because my heritage was originally German. I think the guides should be cautioned about presenting their personal views to their clients during an excursion. Our second disappointment and our whole focus for this trip was not really Normandy but the visit to Paris. Due to the rising water levels, we were bused into Paris and stayed at the Pullman Hotel, not centrally located by any means; no walking the Seine from your ship here. This hotel was the worst as far as the room was concerned and the food could not compare with the beautiful relaxed meals we had on the ship. Their restaurant was like a large cafeteria style set-up. In defense of Avalon and probably unheard of with any other river cruise company, they reimbursed us our money for one full day. Yvette, our Cruise Director, organized additional excursions for us which were normally not included. Hence, the "but" in my title. I guess one has to modify expectations on any trip and be prepared for the unforeseeable events. Read Less
Sail Date May 2015
We love cruising rivers in Europe and went on Tapestry I about 6 years ago on Rhine. Tapestry Ii has much better dining area, lounges, rooms, etc. However, they are still working kinks out on safety in the halls. Walking down the hall ... Read More
We love cruising rivers in Europe and went on Tapestry I about 6 years ago on Rhine. Tapestry Ii has much better dining area, lounges, rooms, etc. However, they are still working kinks out on safety in the halls. Walking down the hall on our 4th day, 2 laundry bags were left lying outside in the hall beyond the large cart. We could not see them since the cart blinded them in our direction. With people coming and going at 8 am for breakfast and excursions, the laundry bag tripped me up and I went flying down on the floor. It certainly put a damper on our trip with bruises and pains for several days/weeks. Hopefully, they have rectified this type of error to prevent future passengers from this unpleasant experience. The food was good, free-flowing wine at dinner, and wonderful service by bar, restaurant and front desk. Entertainment on board was best provided by the daily pianist; the hairdresser-Anette is amazing; and entertainment lounges quite ample. I would recommend a better French singer on board for future performances. Normandy was very moving! Read Less
Sail Date April 2015
-We were hoping to discover France's culture and French food, but only discovered Avalon's version. -Since we joined this Cruise from another Avalon cruise, there was no welcome aboard, only surprise from the staff ... Read More
-We were hoping to discover France's culture and French food, but only discovered Avalon's version. -Since we joined this Cruise from another Avalon cruise, there was no welcome aboard, only surprise from the staff when we asked for a daily activity sheet.(never did receive one) -Very nice accommodations, loved the large sliding window. -Loved the intimate lite meal options , in the Panorama Lounge. We do not care for the noise of a 'dining hall'. -Liked the option of a top sheet and blanket, instead of a duvet, for the bed. ( not a duvet fan) -Better description of activity levels is needed for excursions, some people on excursions should not have gone due to physical limitations, food restrictions, ect. Staff and or Cruise Director could have resolved these issues and saved some guest embarrassment. -Staff customer service could be improved on. Staff interaction improved as it got closer to the end of the cruse ( tip time) -Disliked the Big ship feel, even though there were only a little more than 120 guests. -Upper deck almost unusable due to height of bridges. -We went with this trip to experience the Seine and experience the 75th Anniversary of D-Day . D-Day remembrance was good, however none of our group had an idea of the plan for the ceremony. Even though we found out that there was a schedule available, Avalon did not supply one. *Probably will not travel with Avalon again. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
Started in Paris and stops along the way to Normandy and at the end, a transfer to the train for the chunnel to London. The ship was a new ship and we thoroughly enjoyed the window setup and the ship itself with one exception. In many ... Read More
Started in Paris and stops along the way to Normandy and at the end, a transfer to the train for the chunnel to London. The ship was a new ship and we thoroughly enjoyed the window setup and the ship itself with one exception. In many ports, you have to go through another ship to get to your port. I understand that this is normal and unavoidable (I guess). However, we had to go up and down and over to get through the other ship. The stairs were metal and many times, damp. I was told by a member of the staff that this was a flaw of the new ship. Most ships, and we experienced this on another river cruise, you are able to walk directly through one ship to another without all of the stairs. The food was just OK at best. No where near the amount and quality of the big cruise ships. It was difficult to obtain an extra portion or go astray from the menu. At least I was able to do this on Grand Circle. Service was great! Read Less
Sail Date May 2016
Avalon Tapestry II Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 5.0 4.9
Dining 3.0 4.8
Entertainment 3.0 4.3
Public Rooms 4.0 4.9
Fitness Recreation 3.0 4.1
Family 1.0 4.1
Shore Excursion 4.0 4.7
Enrichment 4.0 4.7
Service 4.0 4.9
Value For Money 4.0 4.7

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