I chose this cruise as my great grandparents came from Saxony and I wanted to view the lay of the land from the water by cruising down the Elbe. Unfortunately drought and the resulting low water levels did not allow for cruising and we were bused from site to site while overnighting on the riverboats. Naturally this was extremely disappointing to us, but when life gives you lemons then you make lemonade...
On the plus side, the crew tried very hard to accommodate us, although much of our onboard ship time turned into bus time in order to reach the prearranged tour stops on our itinerary. Another plus was that over half of the passengers opted out of the trip two weeks out when they were told that they would not be sailing.... Hence my husband and I only shared the the boat with fifth-one fellow cruisers.
Meal options were limited to breakfast and dinner as we were always off the ship at lunchtime. We opted for the lighter breakfast option in the lounge on second, although full breakfasts were served daily in the dinning room on first. Dinner was served nightly on the first deck with table seating for groups of four or six. Small groups tended to gather in the lounge area prior to dinner and again following dinner where alcohol was available for purchase and instrumental and vocal entertainment was provided.
We chose a cabin with a balcony which in this instance was a poor choice as the view never changed and we lost about five feet of room width by selecting this option. The balcony itself was very narrow with two chairs and a small round table which sat parallel to the deck rather than facing outward towards the water. The cabin was very tight with a bit too much furniture for the amount of space given. While I can understand that some passengers may require a chair in which to sit in order to put on their shoes, there really wasn't a clear walkway for the person sleeping on the balcony side of the cabin and we ended up putting the chair under the counter that ran on the wall opposite the headboard where it was never used. Closet space is adequate, although a few more hangers would be appreciated if sailing rather than living out of a suitcase as we did on our 'bus cruise'. There is a small room safe in the closet and lighting therein was adequate. The bathroom was also tight with towel bars above the stool, small sink & counter area, and a stand up shower with a glass partition. The cabin setup was really a case of 'more is less' and I believe that we actually lost rather than gained space by our cabin upgrade.
If you have a connections to the Lutheran church or if you are interested in the Reformation, this excursion is a MUST DO!
Meissen pottery is the stand bearer of German pottery and I discovered that I had a vintage piece of their pottery while touring the plant. Save up prior to your visit, however!
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