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3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2016
My husband and I chose Scenic because it was an all inclusive river cruise. We flew into Zurich Switzerland and enjoyed a few days of sightseeing. We were picked up at our hotel by a driver from Scenic to meet our ship in Basel. We were ... Read More
My husband and I chose Scenic because it was an all inclusive river cruise. We flew into Zurich Switzerland and enjoyed a few days of sightseeing. We were picked up at our hotel by a driver from Scenic to meet our ship in Basel. We were greeted and welcomed before we got on the ship and our luggage was taken to our suite by the cabin attendants. A glass of champagne in hand and we started to explore our new home for 7 nights. Our suite had a balcony, so we would have coffee brought to our suite in the morning by the butler and marvelled at the view of the Rhine River. We were invited to dine at Table La Rive and Portobello, which is a great way to meet new friends. When we were on shore excursions, the guides were locals, so they knew the area and we did not have to tip anyone, again, all inclusive. After the shore excursions, my husband and I would stop for a drink in the lounge and the server remembered what we liked to drink and would bring it to us, with a big smile and asked about our afternoon. We also had a bath tub in our bathroom as well as a glass shower. Laundry service was also at no charge, all included. Disembarkation was just as smooth as ever, because we stayed a few extra days in Amsterdam, we were one of the last ones to leave the ship, and we were not rushed to get off the ship. First class river cruise, first class staff, and very organized. I would highly recommend Scenic. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2016
This was my first cruise ever. I traveled with my sister-in-law and we had a wonderful experience with Scenic. We took the Rhine River cruise on the Scenic Pearl and the whole experience was wonderful! The whole crew were so friendly and ... Read More
This was my first cruise ever. I traveled with my sister-in-law and we had a wonderful experience with Scenic. We took the Rhine River cruise on the Scenic Pearl and the whole experience was wonderful! The whole crew were so friendly and attentive to our every need. Our butler Haris was just so wonderful and when we needed his services he was right there within 2 minutes. All of our excursions were great and they had a separate guide for our "gentle walkers" group. So those who were not able to walk as fast did not have to miss out. The room was great and loved the sun room balcony. The meals were all delicious and the food choices were plentiful. I cannot say enough about how friendly and attentive the whole crew was. I loved the entertainment and the farewell show that the crew put on for us was hilarious ! Will definitely choose Scenic again when I get the chance. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2016
I really loved this cruise...the cruise director and everyone did everything to please everyone. The rooms were perfect, food outstanding....my luggage was missing with the airlines until the last day of the cruise. Frank and many others ... Read More
I really loved this cruise...the cruise director and everyone did everything to please everyone. The rooms were perfect, food outstanding....my luggage was missing with the airlines until the last day of the cruise. Frank and many others worked daily to help me get that red traveling suitcase. All the daily trips were timed perfect so we never hit many rainy days. The cruise even washed my few pieces of clothing for me daily if I needed them to at no charge... The massage lady made me really relax when I got my foot massage and was great for my manicure. You could order from the menu as needed, and that really spoiled a lot of us. Could I have my own Butler again please at home? Once again THANK YOU to all on the SCENIC PEARL for a wonderful cruise...loved your boat. Will do it again some day with you. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2016
The reason we chose this cruise was everything was included. We stayed 2 nights in Budapest prior to departure. We were lucky to have booked in to the hotel right opposite the wharf where the ship was moored. As we were so close we ... Read More
The reason we chose this cruise was everything was included. We stayed 2 nights in Budapest prior to departure. We were lucky to have booked in to the hotel right opposite the wharf where the ship was moored. As we were so close we walked to the ship, halfway along our walk the hotel manager Miguel & a staff member came to greet us & take our bags. That was the start of impeccable service. When we disembarked our tour director booked a taxi for us. The disembarkation was very smooth. The staff were amazing, always happy, willing to help they made us all feel like one big happy family. Our tour director, Richard Grey, kept us all entertained & well organised for all our excursions. The service, organisation, food tours were all perfect!!! There was a range of ages including a honeymoon couple but no children as the cruise isn't suitable for them. We loved it so much we didn't want to leave. The main tip is to make sure you have a pocket to put you door card in or when you are on shore your boarding card. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2016
The feature that the cost of the All Inclusive Cruise was designated in Canadian Dollars, and that with early booking the airfare Toronto, Budapest,Amsterdam, Toronto was offered as an incentive, which we gladly accepted. The flight ... Read More
The feature that the cost of the All Inclusive Cruise was designated in Canadian Dollars, and that with early booking the airfare Toronto, Budapest,Amsterdam, Toronto was offered as an incentive, which we gladly accepted. The flight with KLM, each way, was an excellent experience, with their " Economy Comfort " available for a small extra charge, the roominess was well worth it to us. The Transfers all worked right on time and were driven my professional drivers, well versed in the local "questions". Very pleased. The Ship, Scenic Pearl, was in immaculate condition. Our suite, 212, was always kept right up to shape by an excellent "room attendant staff". The inclusive mini bar, while we didn't use the content to any great extent, was a great feature to have when we required a little extra something. Aside from the Captain, the Hotel Manager ( Miguel ) and the Cruise Director ( Richard ) were top flight persons. Impressive memory...they always new us by name....ready to respond to our enquiries...a real pleasure to travel with them. The Lounge Crew.....servers and the bar servers...now, they were very special.....I cannot say more..... The amazing coffee machine in the lounge was a real treat and so easy to use, even decaf !! The entertainment, both on shore and on board were top notch....very well presented and always just the right amount of time....not too long, but always entertaining. The on shore transfers ( by Scenic Bus and others ) always had plenty of space...no crowding...the on board guides were excellent.....Eva and Carlsten...were standouts. On and off the ship was transparent.....no fuss no problem... Can't say more....terrific job Scenic.....and well done !!!!! Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2016
We did a Danube cruise on the Scenic Pearl from Nuremberg to Budapest from 20th to 27th June 16. We were in a Junior Suite. The cost including Business Class fares was £7500 for the two of us. High water levels on the Danube. We ... Read More
We did a Danube cruise on the Scenic Pearl from Nuremberg to Budapest from 20th to 27th June 16. We were in a Junior Suite. The cost including Business Class fares was £7500 for the two of us. High water levels on the Danube. We were notified before we left that the boat could not make it to Nuremberg because of the high water levels. We were told that we would be bussed to near Passau - about 2.5hrs. As we had gone out early for a weekend in Nuremberg this was no real issue. But for the others on the trip it was as they this meant they either had to miss Nuremberg or face a c 6hr/there and back bus trip. But the more serious issue was whether we would be stuck in Passau for the whole week. A Viking boat had tried to 'escape' only to hit the bridge and had to 'Abandon Ship'. Clearly not advisable! Eventually, they were able to make the ship as low as possible by removing sun shades all the furniture and railings on the sundeck and we made it under the bridge with inches to spare. I can't really criticise Scenic for any of this. But, as ever, communications were in short supply. They did keep us safe. Note this an not uncommon issue with river cruising that must be taken into account. Suite We had a Junior suite. But it was still quite 'compact'. About what you would expect from a 'Regular' suite on a sea cruise. I don't think we would have wanted anything smaller. Beds comfortable. Clean. Well equipped. Just as an aside, a number of cabins two floors below us flooded when a valve blew. They had 3 inches of water in their cabins and, as the boat was full, they were rather stuck. I think it would have ruined our holiday if it had happened to us. I understand the cabins had not dried out as the cruise ended and new occupants arrived. Food The food was a great disappointment. Breakfasts were fine. Buffet lunches missed all the stuff we had been expecting like a 'carving joint of the day', prawns, crab claws etc. Dinners were even more disappointing. We had no 'WOW' meals. Fish was universally overcooked as were the veg. If you want fine dining, Scenic is not for you. Food much better on UniWorld and it bears no comparison to what you would get on Regent or Silver Seas. The Crystal Dining room is more like a canteen. The tables are very close together with inches between the tables for four. The noise level is high and on hot days the air con couldn't cope. Service Generally Eastern European crew. We had 'issues' with our butler who had a real 'attitude' problem. But the rest were great - friendly and efficient. They probably need more staff as drinks service was slow and limited outside the main lounge. There is only one bar which was closed during an exhibition of local dancing. Excursions Generally very good. The perennial problems of guides wanting to fill every moment of a 90min coach trip with talk,talk,talk. But this is not exclusive to Scenic. Best trip was to Melk Abbey. The evening concert at the Palais Liechtenstein in Vienna was top notch in every way. The tour of the Hospital in the Rock in Budapest was fascinating. On the last night we were sailed along the Danube as the buildings were lit up. This was magical. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2016
We chose this cruise because of Scenic's "reputation" which unfortunately did not follow through. It got of to a bad start. On the coach from Munich one of the passengers noticed we were on a different route. Unfortunately ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of Scenic's "reputation" which unfortunately did not follow through. It got of to a bad start. On the coach from Munich one of the passengers noticed we were on a different route. Unfortunately the representative could give us no information. Three hours later (the journey should only have taken 20 minutes) we arrived at the boat but no information was forthcoming from the Cruise Director. It turned out that because of high river levels the boat wad stranded! The first excursion to Nuremberg took three hours each way as opposed to 20 minutes! I e mailed a scenic who said it could be Thursday before the ship could start her journey. As it turned out we sailed on the Tuesday evening. The trips and the guides were good The food I have to say was extremely disappointing. Scenic say that they provide fine dining. Sadly this is not the case. In particular the evening meals were poor. Most people we spoke to agreed and thought that the cruise was overpriced. We also did not like the regimented meal times. Being called to dinner was more like a holiday camp scenario. I can understand why the meal times are set because the waiters have to double up. More staff are required The cabin was compact but adequate and kept very clean. The staff were friendly but stretched. We looked forward to this cruise but have to say it has put us off choosing another river cruise. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2016
We chose this cruise and Scenic because we believed that Scenic were the number 1 River Cruise providers. We expected to have a 20 minute journey to the ship but it ended up driving for 3 hours. The guide on the coach had no information ... Read More
We chose this cruise and Scenic because we believed that Scenic were the number 1 River Cruise providers. We expected to have a 20 minute journey to the ship but it ended up driving for 3 hours. The guide on the coach had no information as to why we were embarking at a different port. It turned out the ship was docked and could not move because of high water levels. However the lack of communication and information was very poor and many guests were left angry. When asked specific questions at the embarkation meeting we were not given a specific answer. The first trip was to Nuremberg, which should have been a 20 minute drive, but took 3 hours each way which was tiring. An e mail from Scenic informed me that we could be stranded for 4 days. However it turned out that we could sail on the Tuesday night but had to sail back to our second destination but we weren't complaining Our main complaint was the quality and choice of food. This cruise is advertised with fine dining - not so. Breakfast was ok but was only at a specific time and heaven help you if you arrived within 5 minutes of the cut off time as everything was taken away. Choice in the dining room was poor. If you like salad and pasta, fine, but not everyone does. We ended up having snacks in the "River Cafe" which is part of the lounge. The choice here was much better and it was proved by the number of people who started to eat here. Dinner choice and quality was terrible. The quality and presentation was quite simply terrible. One night for instance I asked for my dessert a pancake with a plum sauce. When it arrived it was "deconstructed" by this I mean chopped up and thrown on the plate. I truly believe that Scenic were cost cutting in respect of the food. The trips were fine but the return times did not leave much time to get ready and you had to come down for dinner at a set time which did not suit us. And, before dinner, you had to attend the Port Briefing fir the following day The air conditioning was not working but the staff would not admit this. The evenings were very warn and uncomfortable and this was highlighted when we had to disembark through another Scenic Ship. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2016
Scenic was highly recommended by our travel agent. We found it less than remarkable. Misrepresentations included the role of the so called "butler" - we never saw or heard from him, and nightly local entertainment on board - ... Read More
Scenic was highly recommended by our travel agent. We found it less than remarkable. Misrepresentations included the role of the so called "butler" - we never saw or heard from him, and nightly local entertainment on board - there were two such events, including the "Crew Show". The on-board entertainment that was provided (piano player/singer) was stale and off-key. It is difficult to say which was worse, the food or the on-board dining room service. Both were bad. Our best meal was a dinner at a hotel in Budapest before we joined the cruise. We have better coffee at home. The ship was comfortable. However, the shower in our room was uncomfortably small. The view from our balcony was awesome when we were able to use it, which was not often as the ship was bolted to another ship virtually every afternoon, night and morning. Excursions were rushed and schedules inflexible. Scenic is not responsible for rising water on the river and the subsequent inability to reach intended ports.(We reached our day #6 port on Day #8 and disembarked from there). However, Scenic could have done a MUCH better job adjusting land trips so that guests were not on a coach for 7 hours for a 1 hour city tour. Find a closer venue. Leave earlier so that there is more time at the venue. I would not sail on Scenic again, certainly not before trying some of the others out there. We could have done better on our own, spending a handful of days in Budapest, Vienna and Prague. Our next trip will be un-escorted. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2016
I went to a Scenic information night in Sydney and was impressed with the overall presentation and information received. I booked my cruise on that night. My only disappointment was that when booking my cruise an excursion to Cesky ... Read More
I went to a Scenic information night in Sydney and was impressed with the overall presentation and information received. I booked my cruise on that night. My only disappointment was that when booking my cruise an excursion to Cesky Krumlov was on the itinerary but was not included when the final ititnerary was given to us. The excursion to Salzburg was the alternate one which was probably the best of the cruise. We had a tour of Salzburg and then taken 'up the hill' for lunch and a 'Sound of Music' concert. Very enjoyable. Our tour guide Eva was very entertaining. Top marks for the day. Our ship, Scenic Pearl, was tip top. As were staff from the captain down. Everything was organized very well and accommodation, tours, meals and facilities on the ship were first class. The staff were very friendly and helpful. The port talk the day before our excursions was helpful and enlightening. Andrea, our cruise director, was spot on with her tips, advice and information. Entertainment on board was provided by the resident pianist and local entertainers were brought on board. All excellent. The fare was all inclusive and I left the ship with only a 13 euro bill for laundry. We ate very well and could eat and drink all day if one chose. The shore excursions were interesting and the choice to join the excursion or stay on board was helpful. There was also a slow 'walker' option for those less mobile. Our embarkation and disembarkation was very well organized. Overall the cruise was very enjoyable and I would recommend it to anyone. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2016
I always wanted to cruise the Rhine and Danube. I was extremely impressed with the service provided by all the staff, from cabin crew to dining and bar staff. Our tour director was fabulous. The included shore excursions far exceeded my ... Read More
I always wanted to cruise the Rhine and Danube. I was extremely impressed with the service provided by all the staff, from cabin crew to dining and bar staff. Our tour director was fabulous. The included shore excursions far exceeded my expectations. It was refreshing to have everything prepaid and not to have to worry about having to spend money every day. When in Amsterdam we went for a night walk, unfortunately a storm hit and spoilt our walk. we did not have any time to explore further. Our embarkation and disembarkation at each port was every efficient and smooth. The facilities on the Scenic Pearl were all that we expected. Our cabin was on the inside, but was still very spacious and comfortable. The night time dining was just wonderful. Of course we ate too much, because it was all so delicious. I highly recommend that everyone should experience a river cruise at least once in their lifetime. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2016
Our Golden Wedding anniversary treat did not get off to a good start! Due to (apparently regular) delays at Amsterdam airport our flights to and from this hub (hub - hub) to Basel were delayed but at least we eventually arrived. But our ... Read More
Our Golden Wedding anniversary treat did not get off to a good start! Due to (apparently regular) delays at Amsterdam airport our flights to and from this hub (hub - hub) to Basel were delayed but at least we eventually arrived. But our luggage didn't! Nor did that of three other couples who had taken the same flights from Manchester. So, only after filling in the appropriate forms did we meet our transport to Scenic Pearl for the cruise to Amsterdam. And from that point on things only got better and better (despite only having the clothes we had travelled in!) Our Cruise Director Frank was quick to a) " get on to our case" [sorry about the pun!] and b) to assure us that Scenic would launder our clothes at no charge until our luggage turned up. The crew were quick to make us feel welcome, relaxed and at home - as they did through the whole journey. Overnight to Strasbourg and an afternoon which was to have been a walking tour of the city. Sadly, as there was no promise of our clothes arriving we skipped the walk and took to the shops for a few essential items, only to meet our cases arriving at the ship as we re-boarded. All this thanks mainly to the numerous calls Frank made the previous evening and that morning. We cannot thank him enough! Now able to relax, we enjoyed 6 more days of luxury, with service of the highest quality. I will not go into details about life on board, places we visited and sights we saw, except to say that whatever you expect from Scenic's publicity is more than matched by the reality. In every respect our cruise delivered more than we had anticipated. Food, entertainment, tours and facilities all to a standard which would be hard to beat (several times we had to pass through ships of other lines to reach our tour bus - no names, but from what we saw we were all certain Scenic Pearl was far superior). Above all - the crew! Whether domestic staff, kitchen, bar and service, or deck crew - all were happy to help, always smiling and enquiring about our well being (and not your standard "have a nice day" - always makes me cringe!). I've mentioned Frank, for he was our first "hero", but I could mention many others who made us feel special. And isn't that what you want and expect from a luxury cruise? This was our first ever cruise (we don't do "oceans" very well!) but over the years we've stayed in some very high class hotels throughout Europe and north America. Scenic Pearl is well up there in the list of places we'd go back to. Well done Scenic. We'll be back (but we need to save up a bit first!) Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: May 2016
This cruise was our fourth river cruise with Scenic and once again a very memorable experience. The usual high standard of comfort, the professionalism of the crew and staff, the ship facilities, the variety of dining choices and the ... Read More
This cruise was our fourth river cruise with Scenic and once again a very memorable experience. The usual high standard of comfort, the professionalism of the crew and staff, the ship facilities, the variety of dining choices and the friendliness of the service all added to our satisfaction. We had most of the first day to explore more of Amsterdam which we had visited previously at the end of another Scenic cruise. Our embarkation was very relaxed and efficient. The Scenic Pearl presents a very luxurious environment and is fitted out with style and space as a priority. Our royal balcony suite included a large bathroom and sitting area as well as the comfortable balcony to allow private enjoyment of the passing scenery. The relaxed atmosphere of the open decks, lounge areas and dining rooms allowed the maximum opportunities to meet and get to know other guests. Quality meals and drinks are a constant feature of the cruise. The excellent included activities both on board and on shore provide a remarkable mix of culture, cuisine and traditions as well as the never ending opportunities to explore the most remarkable locations either in formal groups or individually using the self guided devices on foot or on the provided electric bikes. Sadly disembarkation day arrived but once again a relaxed experience for the guests if not the crew who very efficiently managed to get every guest and their luggage to the correct departure options. All in all a holiday experience without equal. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2016
This was our first river cruise and we had heard so much we were looking forward to the trip very much. The first greetings by the crew made us very welcome and were settled into our cabin very quickly by our butler Ilona. We were ... Read More
This was our first river cruise and we had heard so much we were looking forward to the trip very much. The first greetings by the crew made us very welcome and were settled into our cabin very quickly by our butler Ilona. We were pleasantly surprised by the amount of space we had in our cabin and the fact that our cases were under the bed made it so much more roomy. Having our own balcony was great too. The eating arrangements were excellent with plenty of choices of menu items and places to eat. The quality of food was excellent and you would have thought that you were eating in a 5 star restaurant. The lounge facility's were again excellent providing comfort and tea and coffee facilities at all times. Entertainment on board was very good and variable. The day tours also were very good with a high standard of guides. Finally I cannot speak highly enough of of the staff. From the cabin staff, reception staff and the dining and waiting staff were excellent. I made a point of addressing all staff by name to show respect for the work that they do and the personal attention they paid to the guests. Whilst some may consider the overall costs expensive the fact that you don't have to put your hand in your pocket for two weeks makes it reasonable. We are so pleased that we did the cruise and recommend it to others. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2016
We chose this cruise because we liked the idea of sailing along the river relaxing and looking at beautiful scenery. However we found that the cruise consisted of up early most mornings and leaving the ship by 8 - 8.15 am to get on buses ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we liked the idea of sailing along the river relaxing and looking at beautiful scenery. However we found that the cruise consisted of up early most mornings and leaving the ship by 8 - 8.15 am to get on buses for excursions. It became quite tiresome, however I really like the Taylor Made devices that were used on the shore excursions and on board while sailing. They made the excursions very enjoyable especially for people with hearing problems. Most of the shore excursion were very well done and enjoyable. The ship was lovely and the staff were very friendly and helpful. I found the cabin a bit cramped and there was a lack of a full length mirror. Entertainment on board was excellent. The food was very nice and the service was excellent. The quality of the wine and spirits was very good. Most evenings we had wine from the region we were in. Our cruise was spoilt by a passenger bringing the flu on board in Amsterdam, knowing full well that she was contagious and it quickly spread through the whole ship. It is difficult to enjoy yourself when you are feeling ill and my husand and I caught the virus on the second day of the cruise and it lasted for the entire trip plus another 2 weeks after. Our flights, embarkation and disembarkation went very smoothly. I would have liked an organised excursion on the day of disembarkation, because we were dropped at a hotel at 9 am and had to wait until approximately 3 pm to be collected from the hotel and taken to the airport. We did a tour ourselves and then just wandered around wasting time after that not really knowing what to do. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2016
We chose this cruise because we wanted a relaxed holiday sailing along the rivers and canal and being able to partake of shore excursions without the need to continuously pack and unpack as if on a bus tour. We also chose the Paris ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we wanted a relaxed holiday sailing along the rivers and canal and being able to partake of shore excursions without the need to continuously pack and unpack as if on a bus tour. We also chose the Paris extension prior to embarkation at Amsterdam and the Prague extension at the conclusion of the cruise in Budapest. All of the shore excursions were extremely well organised with excellent local guides. The staff on board the ship were very friendly and helpful and the meals were of a high standard. There was ample choice in the way of spirits, wine and beer. On most evenings there was local entertainment brought on board from the local port of call and these entertainers were of a high standard. The cabin was of adequate size for the type of ship and was well fitted out. Our cruise was spoilt by a passenger who embarked at Amsterdam with a bad case of the flu, knowing full well that she was contagious. She should not have been allowed to board the ship. A cold flu virus quickly spread through the whole ship. On the third evening of our voyage she had the cheek to go on an evening bus tour to Marksburg castle. The evening concluded about 11pm and as we were boarding our bus, she collapsed for a very short period and then revived and proceeded to cough and spread germs over everyone in the bus. My husband caught the virus on the 7th day of the cruise and spent 4 days confined to our cabin. We had to call the Doctor on board in Vienna to receive some treatment and drugs to assist in combatting the virus. I thought that I had escaped the virus, but I came down with it on our second last day in Prague and spent the rest of my time in bed before flying home. The flight home was extremely uncomfortable. The virus was so bad that I spent 8 days in bed at home before I fully recovered and my husband took about the same time to recover. On the day of departure in Prague, we had to be out of our hotel room by 12 Noon, but had to wait in the hotel foyer until 2pm for our pick up to the airport. Because there was a business convention being conducted in the hotel, the foyer was very noisy, crowded and there was very little seating available. We were not happy with this arrangement, especially as we were feeling unwell. The major criticism I have, would be that hand sanitation was not supervised by staff on entrance to the dining room and also the hand sanitiser was not positioned in a prominent place. On the second last day we met a passenger who saw us sanitising our hands and he stated that he did not know that such a device was available for use by passengers. On disembarkation day in Budapest, we came back from breakfast at about 8.30am to find that our cabin had already been made up and serviced for the next lot of passengers. We still had to use the bathroom and pack our hand luggage. I felt sorry for the next lot of passengers. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2015
This was our first river cruise, and we had great expectations. We had read reviews, talked to neighbors, and got mostly positive feedback. We pictured ourselves riding along the Rhine, Main and Danube, sitting on the sundeck and watching ... Read More
This was our first river cruise, and we had great expectations. We had read reviews, talked to neighbors, and got mostly positive feedback. We pictured ourselves riding along the Rhine, Main and Danube, sitting on the sundeck and watching the castles go by. There were a few days where that actually happened. But far more often, we were going through locks looking at the concrete walls (too many to count), sitting at a dock double parked (so you view is a suite on the other ship), or taking long bus rides (way too many). Our understanding was that in some cases when the rivers are high, the ships might have a problem getting under bridges, but they just closed the upper deck and folded down the railings, etc. Well, the other problem is when the rivers are low. Then there is no solution except to pack up and ride a bus down the river to another boat, or finish your trip with a bus tour. Scenic usually has ships going in the opposite direction, but it was a 3 hour bus ride to the other ship, and then the next day we had to ride the buses back 2.5 hours each way to do the scheduled tours. Compared to ocean cruise ships, everything on these ships is cramped - the size of the rooms, the ceiling heights, the dining room, etc. The main dining room was used for all the meals. Breakfast and lunch were always buffet style. Dinner was usually sit-down, but there were two or three nights when that was also buffet. The buffet is a large oval in the center of the dining room, with serving stations spread all around. At the beginning of a meal you would have 100 plus people trying to get to the buffet. There was room around the oval for maybe 50 or 60 people, and no room to stand behind them. There was also no organization as to what was where and no lines established. You just needed to elbow your way in wherever you could. Scenic does a good job with what they have to deal with. The service was outstanding (except at dinner), and the food was excellent. They provide some cultural events that are superb. A lot of my comments are an issue with all river cruises. The rivers are getting way overcrowded, and there are just too many boats on the rivers and too many tourists at all the attractions. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2015
For our 40th anniversary my wife and I settled on a once in a lifetime river cruise on the Rhine between Basel and Amsterdam. In determining which cruise line to use I did a lot of research and attended seminars before settling on Scenic. ... Read More
For our 40th anniversary my wife and I settled on a once in a lifetime river cruise on the Rhine between Basel and Amsterdam. In determining which cruise line to use I did a lot of research and attended seminars before settling on Scenic. The all inclusive aspect of a Scenic river cruise really caught my fancy and in the end we were extremely glad we went with them. We were met at the ship with everyone on the staff welcoming us home, and for 8 days that is exactly what it felt like (without having to look at the kids mess). All details were expertly handled and the staff were both professional and friendly as they attended to any whim or fancy we may have had. The cabins were spacious and the balconies with the windows that slide up and down mean't we could sit out in any weather. The food at each meal was incredible, and having an area of the ship were we could have a light lunch or dinner was great (after all you can only eat so much). The tour options at each stop along the river were well planned and executed by our extremely effective cruise director. There were plenty of options to choose from or you could do your own thing if you chose. All in All a great experience and we would travel with Scenic again any time. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2015
Our 7 days aboard the Scenic Pearl were a great introduction to river cruising. We had great weather and saw so many sites. Embarkation and disembarkation were very well organized. There were 163 people on board for the trip. The ... Read More
Our 7 days aboard the Scenic Pearl were a great introduction to river cruising. We had great weather and saw so many sites. Embarkation and disembarkation were very well organized. There were 163 people on board for the trip. The excursions offered and the ones we took were very good, not too long bus rides if needed, gentle walker group for some of the sporty sites, small groups for the excursions helped make the excursions fun and interesting. The afternoon of sailing by all the castles was the reason I selected this cruise. It was just great, the CD gave some background about the various castles as we went by. There was plenty of room on the deck for viewing. The excursion to the Sprey Museum in Mannheim was a delightful morning and saw so many different pieces. But the Mechanical Music Museum in Rudesheim was just enchanting. We thoroughly enjoyed all the excursions. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2015
Very enjoyable trip of 29 days cruising the Danube, Maine and Rhine. Interesting stops along the way where we were able to get a good idea of the country side. Five luxury coaches were provided for off ship day trips. We were treated to ... Read More
Very enjoyable trip of 29 days cruising the Danube, Maine and Rhine. Interesting stops along the way where we were able to get a good idea of the country side. Five luxury coaches were provided for off ship day trips. We were treated to five star dining, often using product grown locally. Staff were very pleasant and were there to help in any way. Entertainment was provided most evening often found from the country we were visiting. All areas were cleaned daily and hygiene around food areas was always available. Information was on hand to help if you wished to do something on your own. Fitness area was not well used as it was rather small with only a few items to use. Cabin was perhaps abit cramped.The only complaint was that twice there was a very unpleasant smell which lasted for several hours, it was always there when another ship came and docked alongside. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: May 2015
First of all I should mention that we had awful weather - cold and wet - and this obviously affected my enjoyment of the cruise. We were new to river cruising and I am glad that we chose a shorter cruise as our intro. There were no onboard ... Read More
First of all I should mention that we had awful weather - cold and wet - and this obviously affected my enjoyment of the cruise. We were new to river cruising and I am glad that we chose a shorter cruise as our intro. There were no onboard activities apart from a quiz one evening. Scenic cater for the more mature traveller and we found that the tours were not active enough. For example the best day weather wise was Salzburg but there were two stops on the way there so having done the walking city tour - one hour - and had lunch, there was only 45 minutes of free time. Regarding the ship itself, the restaurant and bar area were very cold - I was in layers the whole time. If you feel the cold take plenty of sweaters and shawls to put over evening wear. People didn't seem to dress up as much as they do on ocean cruises. There are also 68 locks to navigate if you take the whole trip to Amsterdam so nights are noisy - take earplugs. We dined in Portobello which is just a glassed off area at the front of the bar and also Table la Rive which is just a table for twelve at the far end of the restaurant - both meals were good. The standard of food overall was good with plenty of choice although the buffet dinner on the first night was a bit of a scrum. There were some interesting towns along the way - its worth walking around Regensburg because if you choose the Weltenburg abbey trip you won't see the town at all. I would have liked to explore Passau but as soon as we came back from the tour of Salzburg we sailed off - there did seem to be a rush to get to the next lock - presumably to avoid queueing. The sun deck was closed off most of the trip because the river was high and bridges low. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2015
Just finished 15 days on Scenic Pearl, Basel to Amsterdam. From the moment they greet you everything is first class all the way. It's cruising in a 5 star hotel. All crew excellent, food different every day and all excellent meals. ... Read More
Just finished 15 days on Scenic Pearl, Basel to Amsterdam. From the moment they greet you everything is first class all the way. It's cruising in a 5 star hotel. All crew excellent, food different every day and all excellent meals. Entertainment great and varied. Lots of tours at each port to pick from and tour guides wonderful. One exception though. An Historic Steam Train Ride thru Black Forrest is a tour offered, we took it, and being that one of us had been in the actual Black Forrest this tour was NOT in the forrest but in the valley far away from the Black Forrest, so don't do this tour. We had cabin 308 on Diamond Deck. Mid ship cabins are best ones to get and if you can afford Diamond Deck (top deck) then do it. Cabin was spacious and well appointed, they even thought to supply ear plugs for light sleepers. Their attention to detail is exceptional. The balconies have two chairs and a small table and are lovely to sit on and watch the world go by and also great if you want room service meals. We will book another Scenic River Tour and have no hesitation in giving them a 5 star review. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2014
Like the title says, we really enjoyed ourselves. The 'Scenic Pearl' is an immaculately clean and spacious ship. All of the crew, the cabin maids, butlers, bar staff and the waiters were extremely accommodating and friendly. ... Read More
Like the title says, we really enjoyed ourselves. The 'Scenic Pearl' is an immaculately clean and spacious ship. All of the crew, the cabin maids, butlers, bar staff and the waiters were extremely accommodating and friendly. Eniko, our cheery cabin person kept our cabin spic and span. Ratko, our butler, was available at any time to provide us with whatever we needed. The waiters in the main dining room and the Portobello room were good-humoured, friendly and very, very attentive. I want to name them all as being outstanding all but I'm afraid I'll miss one or two. We were definitely spoiled. For every meal, the food was delicious and fresh. The chef and his crews did a splendid job in preparing our always tasty meals. In the lounge, Antonio, Sandy and Svetla served us quickly and efficiently with our drinks. Their patience and good humour in dealing with a bunch of sometimes half-drunk senior citizens was amazing and appreciated. I have to say a good word about our Cruise Director, Werny Beyer (I hope I got the name right). He has a stern look and piercing eyes. However, his daily updates were very enjoyable and filled with good laughter. His somewhat stern appearance hides a great sense of humour. We took excursions at every port and were provided with knowledgeable and informative guides. The 'tailormade' GPSs were great. We could wander around during the tours and still hear the guide. What a great idea. Finally, what made our cruise so enjoyable was the mix of passengers. More than half were Australian. There were about 20 Canadians, including us. As well, there were about 20 British and 4 Americans. My wife and I tried to mix with as many different people as possible. For most of the time, we fell in and sat with 3 Australian couples and had a truly great time. Who knew that Australians have such great sense of humour?! We laughed long and hard about everything and nothing. Most fun of all was learning new words and phrases from our Aussie friends. To paraphrase Churchill, "Australia and Canada are two English-speaking countries separated by a common language."   Read Less
Sail Date: October 2014
This was our second river cruise and our first Scenic River Cruise. It met or exceeded our expectations at all levels. From the moment we were met at the airport in Zurich until we departed the ship and were transferred to the airport in ... Read More
This was our second river cruise and our first Scenic River Cruise. It met or exceeded our expectations at all levels. From the moment we were met at the airport in Zurich until we departed the ship and were transferred to the airport in Amsterdam, the service was friendly and efficient. If you needed or wanted something, just ask. Sometimes, you didn't need to ask, your request was anticipated. The ship was spotless and I can honestly say we have never had a cabin stewardess who more thoroughly cleaned our cabin on any cruise, either ocean or river cruise. The food was good and the all inclusive beverages included premium spirits. The two off ship events were fun and well organized. The shore excursions were what we expected, but with one being a total disappointment, and two being highlights. To Scenic's credit, the one that was a total disappointment is not on this itinerary next season. We enjoyed the mix of passengers from Australia, Canada, UK and a few Americans (us+2). Everyone was very friendly. The cruise director was great fun. He also was helpful if someone had a personal problem. The crew and officers were flexible. For example, one day the weather was going to be much warmer than usual, so a BBQ was planned for the upper deck and cooking was done there and all the food brought up there. Umbrellas were set up at the tables, etc. Great fun. A great cruise! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2013
After 23 Ocean cruises we decided to give River Cruising a chance as many of our friends were raving about it. We accidentally discovered Scenic Cruises, an Australian company that wasn't marketing in the US - yet! We chose the 14 ... Read More
After 23 Ocean cruises we decided to give River Cruising a chance as many of our friends were raving about it. We accidentally discovered Scenic Cruises, an Australian company that wasn't marketing in the US - yet! We chose the 14 night Rhine / Moselle itinerary and I would highly recommend it. I won't bore you with the day to day details other than to say the smaller towns were the best part - Trier, Bernkastle, Rudeshiem, Cochem - were all fascinating and by far the best part of the cruise. The Scenic Enrich tour program was great. The guides were top notch, when we needed transportation the coaches were first class and the best part was the E-Bikes which we rode frequently on the river. Scenic's ships are simply wonderful. The cabins are a bit small for folks used to a large cabin on a megaship but quite well laid out and eminently comfortable. When Scenic says "all inclusive" they really mean it. After 14 days my final bill was 30 Euro's. 20 for a very nice Scenic knit Polo shirt and 10 for a hat. No another penny for anything. Everyone always wants to know about the food We found it very good, and well presented. Scenic has a wonderful lunch buffet each day and a full 4 course sit down dinner at night. For picky people like me they even fixed a great cheeseburger one night when the waiter asked what I'd like for dinner! That's just typical of the level of service provided. For anyone considering a River Cruise, I would highly recomment looking at Scenic. For the record this is the first time I've ever written a review and the main reason I did was the total lack of information I found on the internet when I started my search. Happy Cruising, Conrad Read Less
Scenic Pearl Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 5.0 4.4
Dining 4.0 4.3
Entertainment 2.0 4.0
Public Rooms 5.0 4.4
Fitness Recreation 3.0 3.3
Family 1.0 3.3
Shore Excursion 4.0 4.4
Enrichment 2.0 4.5
Service 4.0 4.7
Value For Money 4.0 4.2
Rates 5.0 N/A

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