1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2018
Excellent service throughout. Personal service on a smaller ship and more relaxing. Food could not be faulted. Such variety to suit all tastes. All the dining staff were great and was no trouble for special requests and the wine ... Read More
Excellent service throughout. Personal service on a smaller ship and more relaxing. Food could not be faulted. Such variety to suit all tastes. All the dining staff were great and was no trouble for special requests and the wine flowed well! Cruise Director very helpful and always smiling and knowledgeable who put a great package together with lots of added touches to make the days very special Tours were given by brilliant knowledgeable local guides catering for all abilities. Cabins are a bit small but loved the balcony view. Cabin service was excellent, Jolene was very efficient and pleasant Embarkation great, greeted well and cabins ready when we arrived Disembarkation was smooth and very organised and buses arrived on time and put our cases on the bus. We had a wonderful time and would certainly book again. it wasn't the cheapest cruise but you mainly get what you pay for! Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2018
We chose this cruise because of its itinerary and, in particular, the opportunity for an extra day visiting a particular city, Vienna. The only very minor disappointment of the cruise was that, until we got there, we were not aware that ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of its itinerary and, in particular, the opportunity for an extra day visiting a particular city, Vienna. The only very minor disappointment of the cruise was that, until we got there, we were not aware that Vienna would be closed on our free day there, I.e. Sunday. However, this was more than compensated by the alternative excursion to Bratislava. Following our experience on a previous cruise, We also chose to book the cruise via a travel agent, rather than directly with the cruise operator. This turned out to be very wise. The travel agent dealt with all the flight issues, and everything went according to plan. The cruise company's representatives to and from the airports were really obliging. On board, all the staff were first class and really engaged with the guests without being fawning or overbearing. We particularly liked the option of a lighter lunch and breakfast, together with a light tea, a service not offered by our previous cruise operator, and this reduced the tendency to over indulge. In addition, the layout of the dining room accommodated those couples who wanted to be on their own, those who wished to dine with newly made friends, and those who had gone in a party and wished to dine as a party. We were also able to observe the readiness with which the chef was able to accommodate those guests who had specific dietary requirements. There was a varied range of excursions and for these, there were really nice touches such as umbrellas and walking poles in the cabins. The evening entertainment was not really relevant to ourselves but that which was offered seemed to be in keeping with the demographic attracted to river cruising as opposed to ocean cruising. Just about everything about the cruise more than met our expectations, and we have no hesitation in recommending Emerald to prospective river cruisers. Indeed, we are already looking to book our next river cruise with Emerald. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2018
First time cruise with my wife to get a real break from the office. Saw an Ad in our Norfolk Magazine - Dancing on the Danube - to include a visit to Vienna, how could one resist? No advertisement can describe the excellence of this ... Read More
First time cruise with my wife to get a real break from the office. Saw an Ad in our Norfolk Magazine - Dancing on the Danube - to include a visit to Vienna, how could one resist? No advertisement can describe the excellence of this amazingly beautiful river boat, the program of visits along the Danube, its incredible staff and their professionalism. Value for money? without any doubt - a golden thread of goodwill linked each day. Bravo, Emerald Waterways! We'll be booking again! If there were any issues these were related to arrival at Munich airport where the instructions and information as well as the Tour operator were poorly represented. Likewise at departure from Budapest airport there were long delays due to another baggage handling breakdown and complete lack of customer information. Highlight of the cruise was in fact the Farewell Party with the Captain when he and all the crew and staff were represented. All passengers gave them a standing ovation and it was an extraordinary but full deserved recognition of the success of the cruise. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2018
This was our first River Cruise we will repeat. We chose Emerald because Senic included drinks all day and we do not drink as much. We were told that Emerauld's quality was outstanding for less as Wine and beer and soft drinks meals ... Read More
This was our first River Cruise we will repeat. We chose Emerald because Senic included drinks all day and we do not drink as much. We were told that Emerauld's quality was outstanding for less as Wine and beer and soft drinks meals only. We did have a few drinks between meals but mostly at the beginning of the cruise and used our credits on board to pay. The care with our Cruise director Darren was outstanding so was the whole crew .Each night we get explanations on the next day activities and countries what excursions to choose. There is lots of free time if we choose to do nothing. They truly care. Darren went out of his way to accommodate us during the heat wave to make us comfortable during excursions. The Captain is the only one who risked going through the low water levels we stayed informed all the way. Precautions were taken and we felt secure. The comfort on the ship is outstanding. Air conditioning on-going. Sheets and bed all is top quality. Embarkation and disembarkation are easy pizzy! No hassle, no climbing stairs, waiting for contents to be checked, many entrances to come in or out from, good monitoring of passengers entering or exiting ship even when anchored with other ships. Activities with music and dancers from different countries were awesome and had us all participating (no obligation). Loved that the tips were included no extra to pay ever!!! We loved Vienna. The after thought is spend less time in little countries such as Lynz and Durnstein and more in bigger countries like 2 days in Vienna as it was in Budapest. Vienna is wonderful the history, the buildings, the sites...we would like to return to spend one week in Vienna only. Concert in Vienna is a must. Family visit in Bratislava is high on our list of likes. The Budapest part is something to remember for the rest of your life. We took the option to stay in Budapest and regretted it simply because Emerald excursions did such a good job at showing us the country plus the night cruise was breathtaking, 2 days more cost us over $1000. (we had to pay for our excursions, food and all) and not worth it because we had covered so much with our guides for free and great explanations. First 3 days in Prague were very well organized, our tour guide was perfectly bilingual, helpful and knowledgeable. She told us so much on on each one of our tours we really enjoyed those 3 days. The bus to Nuremberg on the 4th day made us wonder why we left Prague so late. We were under the impression that there was an organized tour in Nuremberg before boarding the ship. We left Prague at 1h30pm it took us 5 hours to get from Prague to Nuremberg. The meal stop (at our expense) was in a mcDonalds on the side of the road. Could have had a lunch packed for us from the hotel before leaving or go to a local restaurant? Anyhow, this stop is not representative of the ship standards and was very disappointing in terms of a short visit in Nuremberg and food but we should of understood at that moment that the food standards of Emerald are far from ours... Speaking of food... If you like veggies and soup (soups were very good but very salty) bread and cold cuts and desserts you are in for a treat also, there were many fruit and nuts to choose from.I have travelled more than my share business and pleasure, sea cruises, organized or not trips, it is the first time I come back having lost weight because nothing on the menu turned our crank! Nothing refined...I can appreciate we ate local...goulash, sausages, sauerkraut, shneizell we had the impression that nothing was freshly made more like warmed up cafeteria and fat. There was an option choice for those who did not like the day menu, steak, salmon or chicken breast. Steak was not the best quality and lots of pulling to cut, if you like your steak medium rare by the time they come up the stairs and serve it continues to cook and turns out to be well done; the chicken is more like an overcooked thin cutlets=dry like cardboard, salmon very dry and small portion. Captain's night Chateaubriand and fish the portions were so small 3 bites later and it was gone, night of the Celebration supper Beef cheeks tasted like plastic (could not eat it had a salad with cheese) . Lunch is a buffet pretty much always the same. I hate to post such a bad review for food because all the rest was soooooo over the top excellent.But for our group food kicks the experience up a notch! We would like an explanation of why the quality was so poor it will help us choose our next cruise. I do recommend this cruise and if food is important for you then ask more questions before you book. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2018
This was our first river cruise and the big draw for us was that we would have a special show at the Venice Arsenal from dancers from the British TV show "Strictly Come Dancing": Vincent Simone and Flavia Caccace. We were ... Read More
This was our first river cruise and the big draw for us was that we would have a special show at the Venice Arsenal from dancers from the British TV show "Strictly Come Dancing": Vincent Simone and Flavia Caccace. We were extremely impressed with the high standards on board the ship. The cabins were luxurious and stylishly decorated with wonderfully comfortable beds. Food was good and plentiful. All of the staff on board the ship were helpful, polite and good natured and did a fantastic job. Whilst we were cruising, the Danube waters became very low and some ships could not continue with their cruise as expected. However, our Captain got us through the expected itinerary with just a few hold ups due to having to sail more slowly than usual. Top marks to all the Emerald Destiny staff in all departments. There were lots of activities to entertain us on board and off. There were energetic bike rides on offer as well as additional trips to cities away from the river if you wanted to spread your wings a bit. In the evenings there was music and dancing available and sometimes local folk musicians giving us a taste of the local culture. The absolute highlight of our trip though was the music recital and dance performance in Vienna. Vincent and Flavia danced sublimely and then were happy to meet us, their fans, having pictures taken and a chat. There were very few downsides to the cruise, but we were very disappointed that our stop in Linz was on a Sunday when everything was closed. There were some really interesting vintage and artisan shops there, so not being able to go in was frustrating. Another slight disappointment was that during the on-board dancing masterclass with Vincent and Flavia the day after their performance, there was not enough room for everyone who wanted to take part. More thought was needed about how furniture could be moved and space created. Overall though, this was a fabulous experience and one that I am happy to recommend. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2018
We wanted a holiday travelling to an area we hadn't been to before although our friends we travelled with had experienced cruising before. It was a special double birthday and wedding anniversary holiday so we chose Emerald Cruises ... Read More
We wanted a holiday travelling to an area we hadn't been to before although our friends we travelled with had experienced cruising before. It was a special double birthday and wedding anniversary holiday so we chose Emerald Cruises because of their high standard. Our friends had travelled with Scenic Waterways 5 years ago and they stated that this holiday was of the same standard. The crew were very friendly as were the staff who cleaned our rooms. I must also mention the Reception staff were very helpful. I had a missing suitcase from the airline and the Cruise director Patricia was extremely helpful and went out of her way to try to track the case down. The guided tours were excellent and we thoroughly enjoyed the Bratislava tour with Monica. The evening cruise along the Danube on our last evening aboard was also excellent and enjoyed by all. The is one not to be missed. To sum up we would certainly holiday with Emerald again and would recommend it to anyone. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2018
We are regular ocean cruisers, but were hesitant about river cruise, wondering what it was like, whether it would be too small etc. This review will cover the excellent and maybe some other aspects you may wish to consider. We traveled ... Read More
We are regular ocean cruisers, but were hesitant about river cruise, wondering what it was like, whether it would be too small etc. This review will cover the excellent and maybe some other aspects you may wish to consider. We traveled on the Danube, joining the Destiny at Budapest and finishing at Passau. We had a lower cabin with restricted view. We flew back via Munich. So arrival and embarkation was fine. Emerald arrange everyone to collect from various planes so we had about 30 mins wait before going on the bus to the ship. Getting on was very straight forward. The river water was low and someone tripped and the slope was quite steep, however the low water meant that not all ships following us got through. So whilst good weather is often an advantage I will be looking to see if there are exceptionally low water conditions as part of my planning - This was chosen at the last minute. We don't normally do trip but short trips were included in the price, these help orientate us in whatever town or village we were in and were great. We also had some really great entertainment, for example, in Vienna, we went to the Arsenal (a war museum) one evening, for bubbly and in this venue we were entertained by a Strauss music concert and lieder, then a Q&A and dance routines by Vincent and Flavia (ex-Strictly Come Dancing fame), ex-world champion Argentine Tango dancers. They gave us a dance lesson the next day and were very funny and charming. Other on-board entertainment was local and maybe not to everyone's taste. There is no real room for dancing (a postage stamp of a dance floor), it's not really that type of trip. The food was excellent, with local delicacies on offer each evening. There is only one set time for dinner, however no fixed seating, so if you end up sitting with someone you don't like, you can avoid them the second time. the average cruiser appeared to be older active person (there's often quite a bit of walking in the orientation trips). The Austrian and Bavarian villages often have old uneven pavements and can be on hills. They also offer free bike excursions (or you can simply borrow a bike). The weather was exceptionally hot and many destinations don't have air-conditioning, so if going at a hot time of year bring a fan! The ship, however, is just right, neither too hot nor cold. We first thought of buying an upgrade to a balcony, but this was rather expensive. We are glad we didn't as often those with windows couldn't see out as on canals and rivers, other ships have a habit of tying up against you at night, so it would be only of benefit when cruising during the day. The horizon lounge offered great views and some people spent the cruising time on the top deck. It did not feel crowded, even at lunch time and no long queues or aimlessly trying to find a seat as we have done in ocean going vessels. The food was surprisingly good with options of Hungarian, Austrian and Bavarian dishes on offer as you went through those countries. Wine and beer included at lunch and dinner. The cabin was fine, and as I didn't need to bring formal wear, there was plenty of storage space. Ladies did dress up slightly on some evenings, but not as formal as on larger ships. It was too hot to wear a jacket, so smart/casual trousers and shirt was fine for evening. There was a slight whoosh, from the toilets as they flushed (powerful flush!) and sometimes you would hear this in the mornings, but no-one else seemed to notice. Shower was excellent. The only slight niggle was disembarkation and being at the airport four hours before our flight (which ended up being delayed by 1.3 hours, missing our connection, necessitating a 12 hour overall door-to-door journey- not Emerald's fault but we will add on some days at the end on our next cruise.) The destinations were interesting, beautiful and allowed for enough cruising/visiting time. Almost wanted to do a back-to-back as every destination was worthy of more time spent in it. Service was exceptional in all departments. It was our first river cruise and won't be our last! Read Less
Sail Date: July 2018
Been with Emerald Waterways before, we were very pleased with them and wanted to do a different part of the Danube. This was a new ship in 2017 and everything was sparkling as usual with Emerald. The staff are very friendly courteous and ... Read More
Been with Emerald Waterways before, we were very pleased with them and wanted to do a different part of the Danube. This was a new ship in 2017 and everything was sparkling as usual with Emerald. The staff are very friendly courteous and efficient. The service could not be faulted. The weather was good but the water levels very low which required the captain to alter the schedule a little to get past the restriction which he did successfully, when other boats were stranded. He had to empty the swimming pool briefly to reduce weight and gain sufficient clearance(3 cm). Something to think about when taking river cruises in the Summer months. The on- board spending allowance(200 euros/ cabin) was very helpful in buying gifts. The menu choices were extensive and the food delicious, and with the generous wines at meals, we felt it was unnecessary to buy the drinks package. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2018
We booked the cruise a year in advance so we got a good deal. We wanted to add an additional day on at the beginning, so that we could visit relatives and this was arranged by Emerald without any problems. Embarkation and ... Read More
We booked the cruise a year in advance so we got a good deal. We wanted to add an additional day on at the beginning, so that we could visit relatives and this was arranged by Emerald without any problems. Embarkation and disembarkation went very smoothly indeed. The ship was extremely clean and tidy and all of the staff were very friendly, polite and helpful. The cabin was always clean and very tidy and the swan that the lady made out of two towels one day was brilliant! The waiting staff and others laughed and joked with us and the other passengers!! The food was extremely good and you could eat as much as you wanted at the buffet breakfast, lunch and afternoon tea. The service overall was superb. The entertainment on board was great and the various groups that came on board were very good. The resident singer/keyboard player was extremely talented. The guided tours were very informative and the guides' English was always very good. The only problem was that the guide in Budapest, didn't wait for everyone to get off the bus, before moving off, which meant that a group of us lost him a couple of times. The trip in Bratislava to visit a lady in her home, was the highlight of the whole trip for us. It was extremely interesting to be able to talk to her and to find out her opinions about life during Communism and life afterwards.Our interpreter, who was a 16-year old lad called Oliver had superb English and I was very impressed with his language skills for someone so young!!! The cake and drink that she gave us was delicious. Something on the boat that we felt was not good at all, was a step that a man fell over in the restaurant on the ship. I also nearly fell over on it, although I had been told that it was there. It was a step at the far end of the restaurant (at the front of the ship) and it was only about 3 inches or so high. However one dark carpet finished before it and the actual step was covered by another dark carpet, so that it was not very visible at all. I think that there needs to be some obvious tape or some form of marking it out to people, so that they can see it much more easily... All of the staff onboard were brilliant, but Darren the Cruise Director was a star, as he not only ensured that we were fully aware of what was happening, where and when, but he also produced our luggage tags for us before disembarkation and was on and off the boat on disembarkation day with every group of passengers, checking that our luggage was there and saying goodbye to us. He was also a very funny entertainer during the daily Port Talks and the little readings that he did just before we went to dinner were hilarious. He's very good with accents too!!!! Unfortunately, me and my Mum got tummy bugs a few days after the end of the cruise, but at least it was much better that getting them during the cruise. An extremely enjoyable and informative cruise and I wouldn't hesitate in using Emerald again. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2018
The itinerary featured several cities that we were keen to visit as well as the Danube experience. The daily activity options were varied which met the needs of the very active as well as those who wanted a more gentle approach to the ... Read More
The itinerary featured several cities that we were keen to visit as well as the Danube experience. The daily activity options were varied which met the needs of the very active as well as those who wanted a more gentle approach to the trip. We wanted to make the most of the day time cruising experience which worked well. If the ship was cruising at night it was vert restful looking out of the cabin window seeing the water passing by. The food was very good as was the wine and other beverages. The wine changed daily as did the menu to feature the local cuisine and wine region One very impressive aspect was the excellent team spirit demonstrated by the ships team Without exception they were all very customer focused and attentive. The cruise director was extremely good and all tours were well organised. Great thought has gone into ensuring a great customer experience by Emerald/. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2018
The staff were very attentive and very friendly it was obvious they were having fun and this was infectious creating lots of fun for us. The itinerary was well organized with many excellent day trips to a wide variety of places. Each one ... Read More
The staff were very attentive and very friendly it was obvious they were having fun and this was infectious creating lots of fun for us. The itinerary was well organized with many excellent day trips to a wide variety of places. Each one provided uswith well informed guides who were very easy to listen to and who helped us to see and understand the history and culture of their destination. The food was very well prepared with buffet style breakfasts and lunches. Dinner allowed much variety and was aka cart. Foods of the region were featured as well as steak salmon or vegetarian meals. The cabins were perfectly laid out and provided us with just enough space and all the necessary amenities. There were numerous extras with regards to local entertainers and added programs that enhanced our trip. There were no hidden fees everything was included. Our cruise director Darren ensured everyone enjoyed as much or as little as they wanted. We would book another cruise with Emerald. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2018
After lots of research we decided that an Emerald cruise would give us a great holiday. This was our first experience of cruising and we chose Emerald as the itinerary looked good, the ship appeared luxurious and the services on offer ... Read More
After lots of research we decided that an Emerald cruise would give us a great holiday. This was our first experience of cruising and we chose Emerald as the itinerary looked good, the ship appeared luxurious and the services on offer were ideal for us. From the very start every aspect of our holiday was meticulously organised and we felt like VIPS. The comfort on board was fantastic, food fabulous and every crew member helpful, polite and efficient. The itinerary of excursions was very good but there was no pressure to join in - we did what we wanted to, or just relaxed on board. We are not people who are keen on mixing with large groups and we were delighted to find that we could eat at a table for two if we felt like it. Although the crew were attentive they were also discreet and we were never "pestered" to join in with on board events nor required to vacate our cabin - our steward happily fitted his cleaning duties into our schedule. This first cruise was so good that we have already booked a cruise with Emerald, this time on the Rhine next July. You may find similar cruises for a lower price, but for the quality of every aspect of a river cruise Emerald is worth any extra expense. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2018
Everything and More. I am generally not a cruise person, my wife and I have been on two previous ocean cruises and while I enjoyed them there were aspects that I was not happy with. This was our first River cruise and I thought that we ... Read More
Everything and More. I am generally not a cruise person, my wife and I have been on two previous ocean cruises and while I enjoyed them there were aspects that I was not happy with. This was our first River cruise and I thought that we would give it a try and see if it was any different than our previous experiences. After being on the Emerald Destiny we will absolutely be going on more. Our first surprise was when we were checking in, we were informed that we had been upgraded from our original Grand Balcony Suite to an Owners Suite. The new room was gorgeous with a large amount of space, including a sitting area and walk in closet. We were able to look at the room that we had originally booked and found it to also be a very good room however, smaller. Every member of the crew was friendly, courteous and happy to help us out with anything that we wanted. In particular, our cabin steward greeted us every morning with a smile and a Good Morning and asked if there was anything that he could get us. One of the classiest things that the cruise did was to introduce all of the crew to the passengers during the closing night meal. The ship wanted you to think of the crew as your family and they certainly did that. We found the food on the ship to generally be of the highest quality and with a reasonable variety. Breakfast was a buffet with a station where eggs could be ordered to your liking. Lunch was served in two locations, the main restaurant and in the lounge. Both locations had a buffet component (the lounge smaller however) and in the main restaurant there was also a main component that could be ordered a-la-cart. After the big breakfast that we ate, we generally ate in the lounge as there were less crowds and it served just what we wanted. Dinner consisted of your choice of two options for every course (these were different every day), as well as an always available steak, chips, fish and other standard fare. In general I loved the food, it was varied and very flavorful, however, there were a couple of inconsistencies. In one instance, a steak ordered by a dinner companion came “well done” when it was ordered “medium rare” (another steak the next night came perfectly cooked). For me I found one of the pieces of Weiner Schnitzel that I had order to be over cooked and dry. Even with these errors I rate the food on the trip very high. One of the highlights on the trip for us was the friendliness of the other passengers and how easy it was to engage with them. The seating arrangement in the dining room makes it almost impossible for people not to engage with each other. We met a number of new friends on this trip. The makeup of the passengers is generally an older crowd with most from England with some from Canada, and a smattering of other locations. Each day there was an included walking tour of the current stop. The tour guides were exceptionally knowledgeable and able to answer any questions that we asked. Given the number of people that went on these tours we were broken into smaller more manageable groups (generally 10 – 50 individuals per group), and on some stops one group was specifically designated for individuals who wanted a more “gentle” tour. Even the regular tours were not taxing we saw and learned a lot of local history and sites. In addition to the included tours there were optional tours for the active/healthy crowd as well as the special Vienna Concert. We went on the concert trip and I found it to be one of the highlights of the cruise. The ship is only a little over a year old and is gorgeous. One of the unique aspects is the pool. A number of people, including my wife, would go to the pool to cool off and relax after one of our tours. I could go on and on about how good this cruise was but I have to stop somewhere. Were there some disappointments on the cruise, yes (the weather was not the best and we did not get to enjoy the balcony as much as we would have liked), but the real telling statement is that I want to book another cruise with Emerald again. 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
Sail Date: June 2018
We embarked on our first class cruise to a lovely welcome by staff and were quickly ushered to our beautiful room. Our cabin steard, Jalena, explained the details of the room and continuously assisted us throughout the week with advice, ... Read More
We embarked on our first class cruise to a lovely welcome by staff and were quickly ushered to our beautiful room. Our cabin steard, Jalena, explained the details of the room and continuously assisted us throughout the week with advice, kind words and an ever present smile. The food on the journey was wonderful. We had no complaints with any meals. Each of the ports were extremely interesting and tours were provided highlighting each city. Especially satisfying was the visit to a family's home outside Bratislava where we enjoyed an afternoon with the locals. What a nice touch! Embarking and Debarking were flaeless due to the efforts of Darren, the Cruise Director. The man never stops trying to ensure that everything runs smoothly throughout the week. He even arranged transportation to the airport for us two days after we left the ship! We would not hesitate to sail with Emerald again. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2018
1.Ship is new. All the facilities are high tech,Opening and closing of the windows and curtains,digital newspaper,and so on 2.The ship does not shake( pitching and rolling ) like an ocean cruise 3.Hospitality is wonderful. Crew ... Read More
1.Ship is new. All the facilities are high tech,Opening and closing of the windows and curtains,digital newspaper,and so on 2.The ship does not shake( pitching and rolling ) like an ocean cruise 3.Hospitality is wonderful. Crew members were all good smiles and good hospitality Especially, the person in the Cabin Stewart was kind 4.Convenient site where The ship was moored. In Budapest, it was in front of the Diet. Please imagine. There are the beauty of the night view spreading in front of you In Vienna, When I woke up, I saw from the room that the Millennium Tower in Vienna was shining in the morning sun. It was incredibly spectacular sight 5.Delicious food and alcohol Although it tastes good to say, it looks beautiful I took many photos of beautiful dishes I will write about this pretty experience in my blog Finally I would like to thank all the crew members p.s. Claws unlimited laundry service/Per bag?, 26€, are very Convenient I used it twice Read Less
Sail Date: June 2018
My partner is decidedly uncomfortable on the open seas, so we thought this might be a less challenging way of experiencing a cruise - we were not disappointed! We take the view that in most cases you get what you pay for. On paper ... Read More
My partner is decidedly uncomfortable on the open seas, so we thought this might be a less challenging way of experiencing a cruise - we were not disappointed! We take the view that in most cases you get what you pay for. On paper Emerald were more expensive than some of their competitors, but given our experience this premium was well worth paying. We chose the Nuremberg - Budapest direction of travel and this provided a slowly developing crescendo of stops culminating in Budapest - which was a totally unexpected delight! I have a linguistic problem with what was described a 'Panoramic Balcony Suite' - it was technically none of these things but there is no deceit here - there are some very informative videos on Emerald's website so you can see what you're going to get. The ship was pristine and the service throughout was excellent - you quite quickly slip in to the relaxed pace of life. Shore excursions were well organised and the guides suitably informative - particularly interesting were glimpses of life behind the iron curtain. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2018
Typically, we have chosen a more independent style of travel, but with everyone raving about river cruising we thought we would give it a try. Overall, this seemed to be a good company to cruise with. It is mostly all inclusive unless ... Read More
Typically, we have chosen a more independent style of travel, but with everyone raving about river cruising we thought we would give it a try. Overall, this seemed to be a good company to cruise with. It is mostly all inclusive unless you want to drink all day long. Wine and beer are available at meals and there is no limit. Included activities are mostly walking tours, however you can also bike if desired. The tours are educational, but because the guides have to adjust to all health and walking levels they tended to be less vigorous than what I would want. This is not a fault of the company, and they did try to gently organize groups into like fitness levels. Overall, I did like this company to cruise with, but I came away with the feeling that river cruising was not for me. It is far too structured for my liking and there were days that I felt herded like cattle to get the walking tour over with, back onthe boat and eat again! My LEAST favourite part is the line up to get into the dining room at dinner. They want everyone there at the same time as their food service is very structured. I understand why this has to occur, but it makes for a very un-relaxed feel at dinner. The buffet at breakfast and lunch is average quality....nothing outstanding but always good. The layout for traffic flow needs to be improved. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2018
Friends booked this cruise and we decided to join them. We booked through Anne Clyne in Courtenay, BC & she was exceptionally helpful and professional each and every step of the way. She did us an outstanding job booking us on an ... Read More
Friends booked this cruise and we decided to join them. We booked through Anne Clyne in Courtenay, BC & she was exceptionally helpful and professional each and every step of the way. She did us an outstanding job booking us on an exceptional cruise. We loved everything about our cruise especially the staff all of who were outstanding starting with the: Cruise Director: Balazs who was always interesting, caring, friendly and helpful. Room Staff: Martin who kept our cabin spotless for the entire 2 weeks. Martin also went above and beyond his duties when I was ill one day making sure I had enough water, changing my bedding...simply going the extra mile for us. Dining/Bar Staff: Krystyna...the only woman working in the same capacity as the men during our cruise. She's just a small woman but she works incredibly hard. Always moving, carrying/balancing heavy trays. Serving everyone with a small on her face at all times. Yunus: Always happy, friendly...can serve people will dancing to the music down the aisle to one's table. Incredibly friendly and fun. A true pleasure getting to know him. Dilip/Filip/Dusan: These guys are amazing. So much fun. Always joking, smiling, helpful. There are many other staff worthy of mention but cannot possibly mention them all here so just chose a few to point out. The point is the crew is exceptional. It is our understanding some of these people went to interviews with 200 other people and only 2 were hired so...only the best staff/crew for the Emerald Destiny. The ship is only 1 year old so everything...literally...is brand new, shiny/clean and modern. I can go on forever but will stop here as I am almost double the wording allowed. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: May 2018
I do not have enough superlatives in my vocabulary to adequately describe my experience aboard the Emerald Destiny! From the moment I arrived at the dock to the time I left the ship, I was made to feel important and pampered in every way. ... Read More
I do not have enough superlatives in my vocabulary to adequately describe my experience aboard the Emerald Destiny! From the moment I arrived at the dock to the time I left the ship, I was made to feel important and pampered in every way. Balage, the cruise director worked literally non-stop to make sure every detail was taken care of. As well, he organized amazing tours and special events on board so that everyone was entertained every day. I am amazed at how many "balls he keeps in the air" at once, never dropping any! There were so many stand out events, but the special events of the lock party and bbq on the top deck were so much fun. As well, the demonstrations of glass blowing, towel creations, and soup making were extremely interesting. Aside from that, the pre-dinner entertainment of zither playing, a German "oom pa pa" band and Hungarian folk show were professional and fun. I can't say enough. Zoran, the ship's musician was also great! The daily excursions which were included with the cruise were always informative, but the extras were what really stood out. The guides at each port were outstanding! The crew was also so skilled at their jobs. The kitchen staff and servers were friendly and funny while being consummate professionals. I have a food allergy which was taken care of at every meal. If I needed a substitution, the answer to my query was always "of course, no problem." The quality of the food was outstanding in every way. The servers in the lounge were always ready and willing to provide the best service to every guest. The Destiny always shone from bow to stern, thanks to the housekeepers who never stopped making the ship beautiful. I also admired the crew who made sure our ship was secure while navigating the locks along the way. Talk about hard work! These guys were amazing. I never got tired of watching them do what they would say is an"ordinary" job. I can't forget to mention the front desk staff. They too were so eager to help in any way, and were very friendly. No request was too small or irrelevant to honour. Finally, no review would be complete without a shout out to Captain Jasper who looked after everyone, every day. He is superbly skilled and very personable - always willing to answer questions about his job. If you are thinking of taking a significant holiday, this is IT! There could be no better way to go! Don't just think about going with Emerald - DO IT! Read Less
11 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2017
We chose this cruise because a) River cruising was something new to us, and the itinerary included places we have never been, and b) the company promised to include so much in the overall price, it seemed to be extremely good value. We ... Read More
We chose this cruise because a) River cruising was something new to us, and the itinerary included places we have never been, and b) the company promised to include so much in the overall price, it seemed to be extremely good value. We hadn`t heard of them before we saw the promotion material, so took a risk. However, we were delighted with the quality and quantity of everything that we experienced during the holiday, and had no complaints. On the strength of this one recent holiday with them, we would thoroughly recommend them, and would definitely cruise with them again. We were met at the destination airport by a rep, and the transfer to the ship was effected smoothly. We were all given a complimentary bottle of water on the coach. On arrival at the ship, we were met by smiling staff, hot flannels, a refreshing mocktail, help with hand luggage, and all the information that we needed at that point. The ship was absolutely spotless in every area, and all week, we saw staff work hard to keep it that way.All staff were helpful and respectful, and we felt very spoiled from start to finish. Our cabin was spacious and relaxing to be in. There was plenty of storage, everything we could need ~slippers and robes, quality toiletries, even an umbrella and hiking poles provided for excursions.There was also an ingenious "pen" system provided for every passenger, with an earpiece, which meant that on guided tours, you could clearly hear the guide, even if you were at the back of the group, or a lorry went past. Much appreciated by us, as we both have "middle age hard - of - hearing" problems. The restaurant was lovely, the food amazing and plentiful. Menus were geared to the countries we were visiting. Wine,as much as you liked, was included as standard at mealtimes. We thought that this might mean that it wasn`t anything special, but we were wrong. Wines were carefully paired to the menu, of a high quality, and delicious. The public areas were very comfortable, never a problem to find a seat. There was a state of the art coffee and hot drink dispenser in the lounge and also the pool area, which meant that you could have a quality, barista style drink, from a wide choice, whenever you liked, all included. Also included was a tour out almost every day, and the guides were great. Also included were several "experiences", which were quality enhancements to the holiday. These included local bands and folk dancers, but the highlight was visiting the home of a local couple in a village in Slovakia, having tea and cake, a walk around their smallholding, chatting and exchanging cultures, and later, some of their own wine, and some homemade cheesy delicacies. All this included in the basic price! We also had 150EURO credit each, which we were hard pushed to actually spend, because so much was included. We were blessed with amazing sunny weather each day, and had a fabulous time, which we will remember for a long time to come. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2017
This was our first river cruise having ocean cruised for many years. We weren’t disappointed, the cruise, the ship, food, tours and entertainment far exceeded our expectations. Nothing was too much trouble for Emerald and our cruise ... Read More
This was our first river cruise having ocean cruised for many years. We weren’t disappointed, the cruise, the ship, food, tours and entertainment far exceeded our expectations. Nothing was too much trouble for Emerald and our cruise director Wes was absolutely fantastic. We were very lucky too as the weather was about 70 deg every day with clear blue gorgeous skies. Everything was thought out in great detail, even the walking tours thought about everyone involved with normal pace walking, faster pace walking and a guide for the not so active walker. Commentary came through little hands sets/earphones tuned into the guide you chose. The ship was beautiful, very decadent and spotless. Our cabin was beautiful with plenty of space, bathroom beautiful. We couldn’t fault the food, so much choice from the buffets to the served evening meal. There was plenty to do as there was always a guided tour, sail along the beautiful scenery or just relaxing inside the beautiful lounge. Service was wonderful, nothing too much trouble and everyone was so friendly, Like one happy family. We were please with all the ports from Nurenberg to Budapest. Bratislava was very quaint and the afternoon tour to have afternoon tea with a family was brilliant. The highlight I think was the optional tour to an evening concert in Vienna, it was simply wonderful. I can’t praise this cruise enough and we shall certainly return to Emerald in the future. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2017
This was my first real river cruise ( I don't consider my Nile cruise reflective of the genre) and my friends and I lucked out in going on a very new ship ( inaugurated in May 2017) with a very cool group of people. Unlike ocean ... Read More
This was my first real river cruise ( I don't consider my Nile cruise reflective of the genre) and my friends and I lucked out in going on a very new ship ( inaugurated in May 2017) with a very cool group of people. Unlike ocean cruising the ship complement is much smaller and as is expected skews older. I had no problem with either I love being referred to us "young people". The tours in each city were geared accordingly from active to gentle walkers. The predominance of the touring was inclusive of the price with two optional side tours for an additional fee. The fee was reasonable and not like the normal "soaking" you get from ocean cruise excursions. The pace was not hectic and as such I think you get a more in depth concept of the art, culture and history of each stop. I will say that when traveling through the 40+ locks on the Main you kind of want to say can we get a fast forward but the pace is part of the charm of river cruising. Be forewarned there is not much as far as evening entertainment, but as everyday is a touring day ( no days at sea) you don't miss too much the over activity of night life. Each evening we got an overview of the port for the next day and on arrival local guides came aboard to provide the tour experience. Most of the tours were walking though in the bigger cities like Cologne (Koln) a bus was needed for more direct access to the city centre. I think the Cologne stop was too short but that's the allotment. The food was OK nothing to rave about not much to complain about; I've actually had worse food on a recent RCCL Ocean cruise. I think I'd be up for trying this again. Good thing Scenic - which operates Emerald- has new routes coming on line in 2018. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2017
We had not done it before and wanted to visit the cities we stopped at without packing and unpacking. River cruising is a gentle way of holidaying. Meeting interesting people from many different countries and enjoying good food. All ... Read More
We had not done it before and wanted to visit the cities we stopped at without packing and unpacking. River cruising is a gentle way of holidaying. Meeting interesting people from many different countries and enjoying good food. All excursions were well organised and the local guides were superb.The coaches and drivers were also excellent and drove well. The way of communication when out on excursion was via Quietvox and worked very well making it easy to hear the information by our own particular guide . All staff were courteous and friendly at all times. The room was spacious with plenty of storage space and were serviced twice a day.The sundeck was well furnished. The on-board announcements were clear and informative without being intrusive,the 15 minute warning before any disembarkation was just right not too early and not too last minute.The programme director was clear and helpful at all times. Would recommend this cruise to our friends Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2017
Family recommendation. First time on a river boat cruise. Will definitely travel this way again. The staff was amazing! Very friendly and accommodating. We have no complaints about the staff and service at all. Boat was clean, common areas ... Read More
Family recommendation. First time on a river boat cruise. Will definitely travel this way again. The staff was amazing! Very friendly and accommodating. We have no complaints about the staff and service at all. Boat was clean, common areas were easily accessible and always well serviced. My wife's and my only complaint would be that the bike tour should have been either explained this is for all levels of riders or they should have tiers like all the other excursions. Most of the bikes were good for 32 km but the smaller bikes are not the right fit for this type of ride. I would highly recommend this trip to my family and friends and we will definitely do this type of cruise again. Michael the cruise director was awesome! Very entertaining. Shout out to all of the crew on the emerald destiny. You are all first rate! Congratulations and keep up the awesome work! We have never seen a more friendly and hard working crew before. Ever! Read Less
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