I retired about a year ago. My wife and I decided to try a river cruise. Since this was our first such trip, we treated it somewhat as a learning experience. It could not have turned out any better. We met the tour director, Hendrik Dadema, in Paris where we assembled and he briefed us on what would happen. After 1-plus days in Paris we zipped to Luxembourg on a TGV and boarded. The welcome was warm and heartfelt - just what we needed.
We hadn't planned it this way but we cruised the Moselle and Rhine during harvest time so we were on the fringe of wine festivals along most of the river. Hendrik even used his contacts to have a vintner come aboard for a lecture on wine-making with tastes of his estate wines.
All in all, the cruise was an excellent and relating introduction to river journeys - good food and wine, terrific staff, comfortable accommodations, and interesting side trips at stops along the way. For those with a little less mobility, Hendrik even arranged tours for "gentle walkers".
We will be back to sample other Avalon offerings.
The cabin reminded me of European hotel rooms - a bit smaller than your average American room but well laid out and very functional. We really enjoyed the fact that the floor-to-ceiling windows opened fully so we could enjoy the river when we were in the room. There was plenty of storage and the service staff was attentive and unobtrusive.
We went on our own to a nearby museum which has the largest glass collection in Europe. I suggest it be offered as a point of info on this trip.
The tour was by bus. The guide was informative, approachable, and quite understandable. It was a good introduction to Paris.View All 112 City Tour Reviews