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14 Avalon Waterways Avalon Tranquility II Cruise Reviews

My husband and I chose this cruise because the ports and excursions sounded like a part of Europe we would enjoy seeing. We heard that the scenery along the Rhine was very beautiful, and with this being our first river cruise, we thought ... Read More
My husband and I chose this cruise because the ports and excursions sounded like a part of Europe we would enjoy seeing. We heard that the scenery along the Rhine was very beautiful, and with this being our first river cruise, we thought it would be a good area to start with. I was very satisfied with the ship, the staff and their knowledge, kindness and how accommodating everyone was. They were very professional and organized which was very much appreciated. The service was great!!! I felt very much at ease with the cleanliness of our cabin and the entire ship. I liked how they expressed the importance of hygiene to keep everyone healthy. I enjoyed the beautiful buffet breakfasts and lunches with such an assortment of dishes to choose from and always a change each day. I also enjoyed the upscale dining experiences and the variety of selections each night that we had. It made you feel like you were in a high-end restaurant. Desserts were always a treat. It was also amazing how hot everything was served with that large of group. I was very impressed about that. The violinist show was absolutely REMARKABLE!!!!! There are no words to describe how much I enjoyed that. I felt the ports and shore excursions were very enjoyable. I loved the history and beauty of everywhere we went and everything we had the privilege of seeing. I thoroughly enjoyed the tour guides and the amazing knowledge they expressed to us. I want to say I really appreciated our tour director, Dominic. He was so organized and knowledgeable. He was prepared each evening with our schedule for the next day which I was grateful for. Direction is very important to me. His sense of humor and his caring ways were very satisfying. We did not explore our departure city which I very much regret. We had an extension at the end is why we didn't arrive early. The embarkation and disembarkation went very smoothly which was appreciated!!! Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
We were looking for something we had not done before and friends recommend a river cruise. We were thinking of going to Paris and London and this cruise gave us that option as a add on.So it was like going on two vacations at one time. ... Read More
We were looking for something we had not done before and friends recommend a river cruise. We were thinking of going to Paris and London and this cruise gave us that option as a add on.So it was like going on two vacations at one time. Just worked out for us at the right time. Our cabin being at the back of the ship had the advantage of being next to the snack lounge but then again you had to walk the length of the ship to get to the main lounge for your meals. That was no big deal for us but could be for some older person . The food was good I thought and I tried alot of the choices. But I did notice alot of people ordering the optional choices which were more the standard foods like steak and salmon. On the last day of the cruise portion of our travels my wife fell at the windmills. We were taking by ambulance to the locaL hospital. From there we had to get taxi to a second hospital for treatment and from there a taxi back to the ship. It all worked out but what an experience. We were able to continue our travels and did complete our trip. But we were glad to get home and recover. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
We chose this cruise because of the size of the vessel, small number of passengers, and itinerary. Our cabin was on the top floor, was quite large with a wall of windows - very bright with lovely views most of the time. I was glad we were ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the size of the vessel, small number of passengers, and itinerary. Our cabin was on the top floor, was quite large with a wall of windows - very bright with lovely views most of the time. I was glad we were in the centre of the ship away from the engines during the night and the noise of the locks. It was nice to be docked in the towns and able to to walk or cycle into the towns or along the Rhine. The extra tours had too much bus-time for my liking. It was unfortunate the river was so low that we had to pack up, drive around the low parts of the Rhine, and board another, identical ship on the other side of the low patch and continue with our cruise. Avalon was very organized about the transfer, but it resulted in a very long bus ride - 5 hours in total. I was anticipating more entertainment in the evenings. There was a classical trio one night, and the woodcarving demonstration was very informative. The meals were ok -much better on the second ship. The ship was very clean, but the hot-tubs on both ships didn’t work. The first ship the water was quite cool, but on the second ship it was broken completely. The local guides for the tours were excellent. It was interesting, but I wouldn’t do this cruise again. Read Less
Sail Date August 2018
My husband and I booked this trip with Avalon based on the reviews found on line. We also watch several YouTube videos of past travelers comparing Avalon to Viking. The size of the rooms where very comfortable, the day trips that where ... Read More
My husband and I booked this trip with Avalon based on the reviews found on line. We also watch several YouTube videos of past travelers comparing Avalon to Viking. The size of the rooms where very comfortable, the day trips that where included in the cruise were what my husband and I where looking for in a vacation to Europe. They also had additional day trips of you where interested. Avalon made all of the arrangements from flights to hotel for the days we went earlier to explore Amsterdam to transport from the airport and back to the airport. During the cruise the activities where well organized and the guides where very knowledgeable about thier city. The ship was very elegant and comfortable. The crew were helpful and attentive to all of you needs. The cruise director was very easy to work with and made sure everyone was happy. The food was good with lots of choices. Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
We chose this cruise because we have an ancestral and current relationship with Germany. All travel procedures from embarkation to shore excursions to disembarkation went smoothly. We enjoyed participating in the included shore excursions ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we have an ancestral and current relationship with Germany. All travel procedures from embarkation to shore excursions to disembarkation went smoothly. We enjoyed participating in the included shore excursions as well as participation in some of the optional excursions. While not needed, it is nice that the cruise line offered a "gentle walker" option for guests who may have more difficulty with mobility. The guides were very knowledgeable and gave wonderful information and insight during the walking tours that would occur had we been left to explore each stop on our own. It would have been nice to have had the excursions in Amsterdam divided offering the Windmill tour or the Foodie tour in the morning/afternoon so that we could have experienced both, very hard to have to choose between the three offerings at the end of our trip. The room and bathroom were large enough for two people to move about without difficulty and provided enough space to easily stow unpacked clothing and luggage. Dining options, happy hour, and evening itinerary discussions were very helpful to planning each day. Personally, I will never take another cruise on a vessel any larger than the one taken on the Rhine River Cruise. Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
Avalon was more upscale than the last river cruise we went on 10 yrs ago. Our cruise director Andre was incredible! His evening briefings for the next day were very informative. We really enjoyed our extension in Lucerne. The staff was ... Read More
Avalon was more upscale than the last river cruise we went on 10 yrs ago. Our cruise director Andre was incredible! His evening briefings for the next day were very informative. We really enjoyed our extension in Lucerne. The staff was very accommodating! We would definitely choose Avalon again & would recommend it to others. We were hoping for a little bit more scenery along the Rhine. Several days were industrialized & not as scenic as the Rhône. It was quite windy when we tried viewing from the rooftop. The dining experience was very enjoyable. The trio that performed one evening was very entertaining. We would have maybe preferred dinner to be a tad bit earlier - maybe 6:30 rather than 7:00. It was nice to not have to bring any real dressy clothes for a formal night. Loved having only 120 passengers aboard! All in all it was a very pleasant experience. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
Avalon did an outstanding job of making sure we were comfortable and well-fed on the ship. The service was impeccable, and cheerful waitstaff and housekeepers made us feel welcome every day. Food was 5-star....delicious, plentiful, and ... Read More
Avalon did an outstanding job of making sure we were comfortable and well-fed on the ship. The service was impeccable, and cheerful waitstaff and housekeepers made us feel welcome every day. Food was 5-star....delicious, plentiful, and well-presented. Home-baked goods and desserts were great, and the food was always hot. One complaint was the long bus rides to the excursions. We spent many hours on the bus, which couldn't be avoided, given the itinerary. We also were taken to several "very touristy" locations (wine-tasting, music-box factory, for example.) I would have preferred to have had the time to wander thru the towns or shop. The organizational skills of our tour director, Katy, were phenomenal. Everything seemed to be seamless, including disembarkation. I will go again, but will research the distances between the river and the points of interest. As an aside: late October is very cold and damp in this part of Europe! Read Less
Sail Date October 2017
My husband and I and another couple sailed on this trip for our anniversaries. Unfortunately my luggage did not make it to our destination. As soon as I arrived on the ship, I advised the cruise director and he immediately started to ... Read More
My husband and I and another couple sailed on this trip for our anniversaries. Unfortunately my luggage did not make it to our destination. As soon as I arrived on the ship, I advised the cruise director and he immediately started to track it down. Only had the clothes I traveled in but luckily the airline gave me a t-shirt so I could alternate tops until we got to a port where I could shop. I found out later that the ship had shirts that I could purchase. It would have been nice for them to tell me that or give me one. To add to the disappointment of not having my luggage, our friends missed the whole first day of the trip due to the airlines. Avalon was not helpful with getting them to the ship even though they booked the airlines. When they finally arrived in Basel they were to,d they would have to pay the transportation to the ship which was now at the second port. Problems aside, the food, the ship, the crew and the cruise director were wonderful. The ship is beautifully decorated with wood and granite, the bedding is very comfortable and we slept very well. The crew was so much fun, even the captain was fun and friendly. Shout outs to Justas, Petru, Lucia, Nicolette, Madelin, Sorin, Danny, Daniel, Hendrik and more. The tours that were included were fun and informative. There were other tours that you could pay for that were also nice. The entertainment is minimal; piano player/singer at night. One evening we had local entertainment come on board. They were very good. The trip was wonderful. I would not hesitate to do a river cruise again and I would consider Avalon. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
We are UK residents and live about 30 miles from London. We wanted a 7-day cruise with not too far to travel, so went for 7-days Paris to Normandy & return to Paris. Used Avalon last year on the Rhine and it was great. We ... Read More
We are UK residents and live about 30 miles from London. We wanted a 7-day cruise with not too far to travel, so went for 7-days Paris to Normandy & return to Paris. Used Avalon last year on the Rhine and it was great. We travelled by air then, not our favourite these days but it was good from Heathrow to Zurich and return. This year we opted for Eurostar as our only previous experience, a short break to Lille, was good. This time it was a disaster, we missed our train by 2 minutes, as the security/passport control queue was massive. (Sat. morning). This cost us an extra £190 to get on a train 4 hours later, in separate seats, that was the only option. Return journey was terrible, we were dropped off at a side entrance and had a massively long walk to get to the Eurostar Terminal. The economy seats were tired and uncomfortable. At the end of the journey we had a massive walk to find our pick-up driver and then another huge walk to the car park. So our advice is unless you are young and fit, avoid Eurostar. The Avalon River Cruise part was very good, service, food accommodation etc. first class. Avalon include tips as well for UK customers and offer beer, wine & soft drinks at lunch and dinner included. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
The cruise was good overall. I gave it 4 stars, as the food was just OK. We thought that the portions were smaller then expected, certainly any fish being served was minute! Also, having to be in the restaurant at a specific time was ... Read More
The cruise was good overall. I gave it 4 stars, as the food was just OK. We thought that the portions were smaller then expected, certainly any fish being served was minute! Also, having to be in the restaurant at a specific time was very different to the flexibility offered on ocean cruises. The ship was nicely decorated, very comfortable public lounges. Strongly suggest watching for the drinks receipts are correct, as we were charged for other passengers drinks, and the Avalon staff would not credit us, which was surprising. The top of the ship was very comfortable, with nice loungers to lay out. The best part of the cruise, other than visiting interesting towns, was the very pleasant ships staff, always smiling and looking like they were happy with the job. The cruise director deserves special mention, Thomas, he was in complete control of all activities and tours, and did a fantastic job. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
I chose this particular cruise because at the time I booked it, it was the only two-week river cruise over the Christmas and New Year's holidays in that part of Europe. The ship was beautiful and the cruise was wonderful. The ... Read More
I chose this particular cruise because at the time I booked it, it was the only two-week river cruise over the Christmas and New Year's holidays in that part of Europe. The ship was beautiful and the cruise was wonderful. The tours were interesting and enlightening and covered a lot of areas, some by bus and some on foot, including quaint medieval villages, wonderful cities and beautiful countryside. The food and service in the dining room were exceptional, and the on-board entertainment was, with a couple of exceptions, outstanding. One disappointment was the extremely loud (huge amplifiers in a very small space) rock band on New Year's Eve. The majority of the passengers were an older generation and didn't appreciate the ear-splitting music. A small percentage of the younger passengers enjoyed it, as did the crew, who were allowed to party with the passengers that night. But, most passengers gave up and went to their cabins early. My cabin was on the lowest deck and only had high windows as most of the cabin was below the water line. But, it was roomy, well designed, and very comfortable with plenty of storage. Unfortunately, I had a problem with only cool air flowing from my heat vent. There was a simple dial for temperature and a switch for the fan. And, according to other passengers, they were using those controls the same way I was. However, after being moved to a different cabin and still having cold air blowing out of the vent, I was more or less told that I was the problem, not the heating system, and I was instructed not to touch the controls. So, in my case, the "separate heating and cooling controls for each cabin" as shown in Avalon's brochure were useless. Because of low water level as we entered the Rhine, the passengers had to be bused to a point farther down river. However, we all knew this was a possibility beforehand, so we just accepted the reality and enjoyed the bus ride along the river. Transportation to and from the ship and airport was included in my cruise package. Unfortunately, Avalon did not schedule sufficient time between the time I was transported to the airport and my flight time. Schipohl is a very busy airport, lines for baggage check were extremely long and, by the time I made it to the counter, my flight gate had been closed, no other flights were available, and I was forced to find a hotel room in Amsterdam and get a flight the next day. Unfortunately, I lost out on my direct, non-stop flight home, plus the upgraded seat I had originally paid for. Avalon needs to adjust the transport time to assure that passengers are at the airport for the time necessary to catch their flights. Read Less
Sail Date December 2016
The stops were fascinating and culturally diverse. We loved visiting all 4 countries. We felt safe and enjoyed the experience. Our favorite stops were Basel and Prague. This was mainly because we experienced the market at night. Seeing ... Read More
The stops were fascinating and culturally diverse. We loved visiting all 4 countries. We felt safe and enjoyed the experience. Our favorite stops were Basel and Prague. This was mainly because we experienced the market at night. Seeing the city lights and the decorations at night was special. We wished we could have visited every stop after dinner. The ship was comfortable and accessible. We loved having the coffee machines available throughout the day. The staff was friendly and helpful. The staff in the dining room were friendly and attentive. We wished that we could have brought our own wine on board without paying a corkage fee. The buses were comfortable. The local guides were excellent. They were friendly and knowledgeable. We could tell they loved their countries and cities. The places we visited were exactly what we expected. We would do another Christmas market cruise in a couple of years. Read Less
Sail Date December 2016
My husband and I just returned from our very first river cruise on the Tranquility II. We sailed northbound on the Rhine, from Basel to Amsterdam. We stayed 4 days prior to the cruise in Switzerland, 2 nights in Zurich at the Central ... Read More
My husband and I just returned from our very first river cruise on the Tranquility II. We sailed northbound on the Rhine, from Basel to Amsterdam. We stayed 4 days prior to the cruise in Switzerland, 2 nights in Zurich at the Central Plaza Hotel and 2 nights in Lucerne at the Hotel Flora. I would highly recommend both hotels. We returned to Zurich via train, then caught the Avalon shuttle to the Hotel Movenpick to join our fellow cruisers. We then boarded buses for the hour ride to Basel to board the ship. Avalon provided a seamless transition onto the ship. Our keys were waiting for us and our luggage was delivered in less than 10 minutes. We stayed in cabin 311. It was beautiful and had plenty of storage for our clothes. The bathroom was especially nice with a good size shower. Breakfast and lunch were served buffet style. Dinner was good, but we would have liked some additional choices, Only 3 meals were available, one meat, one fish and one vegetarian. also, there were every night choices of steak and chicken. Also, there were several grill lunches served outside on the deck, in addition to several bistro style dinners a couple of nights. You had to sign up in advance for these. We thought the provided walking tours in the ports were good, plus there was plenty of time for shopping. We took 2 of the optional additional cost excursions, the Alsace wine tasting and the windmill excursion in Amsterdam. I would recommend both. There was a German dinner option in town one night but not many took advantage of it. You could go into town and to the same restaurant on your own. Avalon is known for their excellent service and we were not disappointed. All staff on the ship were friendly and eager to help. I did not feel they were overburdened as on the larger cruise ships. Read Less
Sail Date August 2016
I did not know that Avalon is a part of Cosmos tours and ultimately Globus, an American Company. There were only 4 English People on the boat, the majority being American with a few Canadians and Australians. This does not matter of course ... Read More
I did not know that Avalon is a part of Cosmos tours and ultimately Globus, an American Company. There were only 4 English People on the boat, the majority being American with a few Canadians and Australians. This does not matter of course but lends a certain perspective. For example, the dress code is VERY casual.This boat is new with large staterooms and high quality fitments and toiletries etc. The tours are very well organised and the cruise director, Nancy Paredes is the best that I have come across. The food and wine is good apart from the vegetables which were mush. However our brochure mentioned a library and a shop which are non existent. The library is one shelf of books, half of which are travel guides and the shop is reception where you can buy a toothbrush. There was one nights entertainment, a trio of violins and guitar which were excellent. Other than that nothing! The lounge emptied at 10.30! This is an expensive trip and I had 2 big problems. The booking was made last September and 2 weeks before travelling, Avalon emailed us and changed the flights trying to blame KLM airline. This was untrue and it all descended into disorganised chaos. Also the brochure notified me for the first time that all gratuities are included in the cost of the trip. It does not say how much, nor can you opt out. I rang the Company who could not or would not tell me how much had been added to the cost of the holiday. Someone was supposed to ring back but never did. At the end of the cruise there were guidelines for gratuities for people who had not prepaid. These amounted to $200. Have I paid this? I don't know. Read Less
Sail Date June 2015
Avalon Tranquility II Ratings
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