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I'm a travel agent who's been on 30 ocean cruises and this is my first river cruise. I decided to give Avalon a try so I'm able to share my experience with my clients and my experience was wonderful. We flew from Atlanta to Zurich and were met at the airport for our transfer to Lucerne. It was wonderful being met by our driver at luggage claim and escorted to his car. We included a two night pre-cruise land package in Lucerne where we met our Cruise Director Akos as well as the other 13 passengers who arrived two nights early at our hotel. Our time in Lucerne included walking tours and a cruise around Lake Lucerne. I'm so glad we did this pre-cruise addition and I highly recommend it. Our transfer to Basel included a stop at Mount Pilatus, which was incredible, as well as the Lion sculpture. By the time we arrived in Basel, we were ready to embark the Tranquility II and the check-in process was incredible. There were only 107 passengers on this sailing with 38 crew. There was no wait to check-in. We were immediately escorted to our cabin, #322. The cabin is quite cozy compared to ocean cruise cabins but the views were amazing. I love that our bed faced the full wall of glass. We didn't keep the sliding glass wall open because there were too many bugs flying around outside and the weather was extremely hot. It got up to 100 degrees in Amsterdam. That's hot! Our excursions were wonderful. We were divided into four groups according to our chosen excursion and were given our own headphones as well as a receiver to hear our tour guide. It's great not having to try to hear a shouting tour guide. We participated every day in the included morning excursions after the buffet breakfast but were often too tired to attend the afternoon excursions. The morning excursion usually ended by the time our lunch buffet was ready to begin. We were able to sit wherever we chose in the dining room but we befriended 4 other couples and usually sat as a group. The waitstaff were very accommodated and would remember our likes and dislikes. I liked that. I especially liked the briefings we had for tomorrow's schedule. It was great knowing in advance what to expect for tomorrow before it was dinner time tonight. We didn't partake much of the included beverages because we didn't like most of the wine or beer that was being offered but that didn't necessarily mean it wasn't good, It just wasn't what we like. The food was good but the bread was great. I usually enjoyed too much bread and appetizers so I skipped dessert. I enjoyed the food more than my husband. He's happy with a steak and baked potato whereas I like to try new foods. No matter what was on the dinner menu, they always had the steak, chicken, fish or vegetarian alternatives. We also enjoyed the coffee and cookies offered in the rear lounge during the day just in case we might get hungry. We didn't need the cookies but we're glad they were there for us to enjoy. The entertainment was nice but there were times when we really missed the casino and the big shows you get on the bigger ships. Disembarkation went just as well as embarkation. It's really nice having such a small group of passengers during this procedure. I would highly recommend Avalon to my clients and without a doubt, I'll be back on another Avalon river cruise in the next year or two. This was by far our most expensive cruise experience in 31 cruises and I'm looking forward to sailing with Avalon again. Yes, it was well worth the high cost.

Awesome Avalon Rhine River Cruise Experience for first time river cruiser

Avalon Tranquility II Cruise Review by roswellmom

Trip Details
  • Sail Date: July 2018
  • Destination: Europe River
  • Cabin Type: Outside Stateroom with French Balcony
I'm a travel agent who's been on 30 ocean cruises and this is my first river cruise. I decided to give Avalon a try so I'm able to share my experience with my clients and my experience was wonderful. We flew from Atlanta to Zurich and were met at the airport for our transfer to Lucerne. It was wonderful being met by our driver at luggage claim and escorted to his car. We included a two night pre-cruise land package in Lucerne where we met our Cruise Director Akos as well as the other 13 passengers who arrived two nights early at our hotel. Our time in Lucerne included walking tours and a cruise around Lake Lucerne. I'm so glad we did this pre-cruise addition and I highly recommend it. Our transfer to Basel included a stop at Mount Pilatus, which was incredible, as well as the Lion sculpture. By the time we arrived in Basel, we were ready to embark the Tranquility II and the check-in process was incredible. There were only 107 passengers on this sailing with 38 crew. There was no wait to check-in. We were immediately escorted to our cabin, #322. The cabin is quite cozy compared to ocean cruise cabins but the views were amazing. I love that our bed faced the full wall of glass. We didn't keep the sliding glass wall open because there were too many bugs flying around outside and the weather was extremely hot. It got up to 100 degrees in Amsterdam. That's hot!

Our excursions were wonderful. We were divided into four groups according to our chosen excursion and were given our own headphones as well as a receiver to hear our tour guide. It's great not having to try to hear a shouting tour guide. We participated every day in the included morning excursions after the buffet breakfast but were often too tired to attend the afternoon excursions. The morning excursion usually ended by the time our lunch buffet was ready to begin. We were able to sit wherever we chose in the dining room but we befriended 4 other couples and usually sat as a group. The waitstaff were very accommodated and would remember our likes and dislikes. I liked that.

I especially liked the briefings we had for tomorrow's schedule. It was great knowing in advance what to expect for tomorrow before it was dinner time tonight. We didn't partake much of the included beverages because we didn't like most of the wine or beer that was being offered but that didn't necessarily mean it wasn't good, It just wasn't what we like.

The food was good but the bread was great. I usually enjoyed too much bread and appetizers so I skipped dessert. I enjoyed the food more than my husband. He's happy with a steak and baked potato whereas I like to try new foods. No matter what was on the dinner menu, they always had the steak, chicken, fish or vegetarian alternatives. We also enjoyed the coffee and cookies offered in the rear lounge during the day just in case we might get hungry. We didn't need the cookies but we're glad they were there for us to enjoy.

The entertainment was nice but there were times when we really missed the casino and the big shows you get on the bigger ships.

Disembarkation went just as well as embarkation. It's really nice having such a small group of passengers during this procedure.

I would highly recommend Avalon to my clients and without a doubt, I'll be back on another Avalon river cruise in the next year or two. This was by far our most expensive cruise experience in 31 cruises and I'm looking forward to sailing with Avalon again. Yes, it was well worth the high cost.
roswellmom’s Full Rating Summary
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Cabin Review

Outside Stateroom with French Balcony
Cabin B 322
This cabin was in a wonderful location on the top of three cabin decks and under the top outside walking/viewing deck The blackout curtains were definitely necessary as it didn't get dark till late at night.
Sapphire Deck Balcony Cabins

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews