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37 Travelmarvel Cruise Reviews

We cruised from Amsterdam to Budapest, September 2019, in an Owners Suite. Overall this was a very good trip, but there were a couple of not so good features which could potentially stop us using the Jewel again. First, the ... Read More
We cruised from Amsterdam to Budapest, September 2019, in an Owners Suite. Overall this was a very good trip, but there were a couple of not so good features which could potentially stop us using the Jewel again. First, the positives. The Cruise director Emese was truly excellent, very approachable and hands-on throughout. We can't praise her enough, and the organisation of just about everything was also excellent. The cabin met our expectations, well fitted out and styled, with plenty of storage space for two, and the room attendant was very pleasant and obliging. Shore excursions were very good, with free time usually available to explore alone. Food quality was good, as were the wines offerred at meal times. The majority of onboard staff were also pleasant and helpful. So far so good. Now the negatives, which mostly concern the Restaurant and dining room seating. If, like us, you enjoy tables for two and do not want to share a table, this is probably not the ship for you. In fairness to the staff, when we made our preference for a table for two known, they laid up two for dinner on the first night, but on subsequent nights only one, strictly on a 'first come-first served' basis. Availability of a table for two at lunch varied from day to day, but was never more than one. We were fortunate to secure a table for two on several evenings and lunchtimes, but that involved waiting outside the restaurant door ahead of opening, something we really don't enjoy. It also meant we had to eat earlier than we'd have liked. At lunchtimes in particular, a large number of tables (up to 30 per cent on some days) in the dining room were placed 'off limits' to guests by the staff - leading to enforced sharing of tables. Apart from the customer service considerations of this policy (customer wishes should take priority over staff convenience) it seemed especially ill-advised on this cruise when nearly half of all guests seemed to be suffering from a really nasty chesty cough and/or cold. Another F&B issue concerned the way wines were served, with glasses being filled almost to the brim, something which we find really off-putting. This is a personal preference, and in fairness to our wine-waitress, after a few days she had cheerfully adjusted her pouring style to meet our preference. I appreciate that generous pouring is probably expected by many guests, but a little more finesse would certainly enhance the overall experience. So, the acid test - would we use Travelmarvel Jewel again? This was our second Travelmarvel trip in just over a year, and we've been really impressed by the company's way of organising all the important factors such as embarkation, shore excursions, and the ships themselves. However, until more tables for two are available in the restaurant, we'd probably not use them again. Having said that, we have friends who enjoy sharing tables on cruises, and we'd have no hesitation in recommending Travelmarvel to them. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
We chose our 2 week river cruise from Budapest to Amsterdam with Travelmarvel mainly from an economic point of view. My husband and I were travelling with my sister, and the single supplement for her on APT and Scenic was outrageous, and ... Read More
We chose our 2 week river cruise from Budapest to Amsterdam with Travelmarvel mainly from an economic point of view. My husband and I were travelling with my sister, and the single supplement for her on APT and Scenic was outrageous, and the single cabins were on the bottom deck at waterline. With Travelmarvel, my sister paid NO single supplement (she was not therefore eligible for free airfare, but still a lot cheaper) and her cabin was next door to our suite on the top deck. We were a little bit anxious that the river ship might not be as nicely appointed as Scenic or APT, but we need not have worried. The ship was lovely, our cabin as spacious as a river ship can be, and the staff and food was excellent. Complimentary wine, beer and soft drink is available at lunch and dinner, and bubbles are available for free at the breakfast buffet too if you feel like it. The staff are very generous with the wine at meal times, with no waiting for a refill. The only problem on the cruise was that we had to change boats halfway through as a Viking river boat had smashed into one of the canal locks and boats were unable to get through. This of course was in no way Travelmarvels fault, and they made the change from the Travelmarvel Diamond to the Travelmarvel Jewel as painless as possible. Before joining the river ship in Budapest, we did a 2 week Travelmarvel tour of Croatia, Slovenia and Bosnia. This tour also was fantastic, with above average hotels, food and tour guide. We thoroughly recommend Travelmarvel. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
This was a full charter from Hanau to Passau on the River Main and Canal to Passau. The ship was clean, Crew from eastern Europe and the Philipines. Most were friendly and helpful. The Food was good but the portions small. we had a ... Read More
This was a full charter from Hanau to Passau on the River Main and Canal to Passau. The ship was clean, Crew from eastern Europe and the Philipines. Most were friendly and helpful. The Food was good but the portions small. we had a Drinks package. The wines served were good and plentyful. The cabin was large and more than enough storage space, the bathroom was also larger than on many ships. The Captain was customer unfriendly from the start. The weather forcast was for sunny skies, Temp between 20 und 25c just perfect. He said the upper deck was to be closed due to low bridges, this was true as many bridges was low with only 10cm headroom, but the bridges were at times more than 5 hrs apart, still he refused to open the upper deck, this was just due to a lazy Captain and his Crew, they just did not want to go up and put up the railings, which would have taken arounf 10 -15mins. because of this everybody had to stay in thier cabins or sit a over crowded lounge. Even when the ship was in port, the upper deck was not opened at first. one stop in Bamberg, the ship arrived 1.5 Hrs late, the guests had to wait 45 mins before the Captian opened the deck, first the rubbish had to be taken off the ship, one Lady asked if rubbish was more important that guests to which the Reply was YES !!!! Chairs and stools were not made available by the Crew, when guests picked them up for themselves the Captain was Angry and said " you are not allowed to cross over the lines," the Reply was then make sure the chairs are here when you al last open the upper deck. We had over 50 locks to go through, nearly every lock the ship was jolted back and forth against the walls, on my many river Cruises this has never happened so ofter before. This Captian really made this a cruise to remember !!! Would I sail with them again Never !! Other companies open the upper deck after each Bridge!! Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
This was the best holiday I have ever had. The country of Myanmar is fascinating; the Burmese people are unassuming and friendly, and the culture of the country well preserved and wonderful. The service on the ship was world class yet ... Read More
This was the best holiday I have ever had. The country of Myanmar is fascinating; the Burmese people are unassuming and friendly, and the culture of the country well preserved and wonderful. The service on the ship was world class yet relaxed. The staff could not have done more to assist passengers. They were ultra professional and capable, but genuinely friendly too - more so than I have ever encountered with cruises. The no-gratuity policy means that interactions are genuine and staff were courteous and warm because they meant it. I traveled with my mother who is elderly and arthritic. They quietly allocated an assistant to her during tours, who had been trained by the tour guides and was skilled and extremely patient about assisting on rough ground or towards a seat for a rest. The food was excellent, with high quality locally sourced ingredients and a delicious variety of regional dishes. There was a wide choice of dishes; both hot and delicious local cold salads. It was almost impossible not to eat too much! The dining room seating was flexible, so that guests could sit together or in pairs as they chose, and staff even moved table settings to facilitate this. The criuse director and two tour guides traveled with us and were really excellent in explaining historical, cultural and socio-economic details. They were completely professional. very very knowledgeable, and were prepared to interact with us outwith their official tour times. Tours were impeccably planned and organised, interesting and varied. Guests appreciated the timetabling, whereby there were one or two tours per day, but with a generous rest time in the middle of the day, which was cleverly organised to co-incide with the boat moving onwards. That was we could rest on deck and see local sights/way of life in rural areas as we traveled. The holiday was therefore stimulating but relaxing too (often cruises are more hectic and the boat moves on during the night). The entertainment was fun and lighthearted, but not glitzy. There was a Burmese puppet show, local dancers, a film showing, etc. This was just right for sensible-minded adults. Overall the ship's organisation, standard of service and attention to detail was faultless. I cannot not praise staff enough and would highly recommend this holiday. It would be wise to go to Myanmar now, before westernization creeps in. Read Less
Sail Date January 2019
We normally drive around Europe but decided that a cruise would be nice and the Rhine river goes through a very pretty area of Germany. We were doing the two week trip from Amsterdam to Budapest. 15th October to 29th October. Due to low ... Read More
We normally drive around Europe but decided that a cruise would be nice and the Rhine river goes through a very pretty area of Germany. We were doing the two week trip from Amsterdam to Budapest. 15th October to 29th October. Due to low water levels however the Rhine is currently not navigable and so on the second day whilst still in Amsterdam we were advised that a lot of the trip would be by coach and staying in hotels. APT gave us the choice of staying onboard or flying home from Amsterdam the following day with a full refund. We choose the latter and less than a week later we have received a full cheque refund. It would also now appear that the Danube is very low and has been for some time so the latter part of the cruise from Vienna to Budapest would also be by coach/hotel. APT/Travelmarvel have now cancelled river cruises for the foreseeable future. (Check out their website). APT and ROL who we booked the trip through have been extremely professional and efficient. We are very impressed with the way this situation has been handled. We hope to re-book a river cruise sometime next year with APT/Travelmarvel. Hopefully the rivers will not be either in flood or dried out! Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
Never tried river cruising before as previously Ocean and Sea cruises. Route looked like it would have good trips available. Started badly as we were not informed of river level problems until we arrived at Budapest airport, whilst ... Read More
Never tried river cruising before as previously Ocean and Sea cruises. Route looked like it would have good trips available. Started badly as we were not informed of river level problems until we arrived at Budapest airport, whilst majority of other guests were notified and offered alternatives 2 to 3 days earlier. Had to stay at 2 Hilton hotels in Budapest and Vienna and take coach to ship in Germany. Cabins were good and had all amenities expected. Evening entertainment on board was poor and a great disappointment compared to Ocean/Sea cruises. Dining was average - no wow factor to food but waiter service and drinks service was slow and lacked any real attempt to impress the guests, and occasionally rude. Worst part was the cabin steward not knocking on our door and walking straight in whilst we were getting ready for dinner. My wife was in her underwear and was very embarrassed. Trips were generally very good at each docking and the dinner cruise in Budapest and Orchestral concert show in Vienna were great highlights. Gym was limited due to space and had 2 machines and a mat. We met many new friends on the cruise from the UK, Australia and Tasmania. Embarkation was efficient and well handled. Overall we were very disappointed with the cruise as the large cost was not reflected in the service we received. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
We chose this trip from an Readers offers Ltd advertising literature it was supposed to be APT but we later found out that as Travelmarvel its the more budget arm of APT so you need to see APTs brochure to find out the difference.The ... Read More
We chose this trip from an Readers offers Ltd advertising literature it was supposed to be APT but we later found out that as Travelmarvel its the more budget arm of APT so you need to see APTs brochure to find out the difference.The cruise was not cheap at £6600 and that was supposed top be discounted. Glad we didnt pay full price.According to the write up we had from ROL all sightseeing excursions were included not so ! and drinks which were subject to cruise lines Ts&Cs which of course you are not given until after you have booked. They are only included at meal times.There are no swimming facilities on these ships and i was told later thats because its a travelmarvel ship not an APT one.We didnt start well as the air travel arrangements that Travelmarvel arranged dispite being booked for twelve months in front were abysmal ive flown from America and not took as long.The Cruising we payed extra for what was advertised as a balcony.it was no more than a French window. Which you couldnt use a lot of the time because it was either nigh time and you were asleep or being moored against another ship.These ships have been desigined badly from the point of view that a lot of the time you cannot stay on the sun deck because of low bridges and that was with the lowest water levels on record these things were not readily mentioned. So this put another dampener hence we had to re pack our cases midweek and transfer by road to the sister ship the Jewel. That was out of there control but we did 150-200 klms by coach. The cruising is also a con as most is done at night and out of 12 days we probably only enjoyed quality river cruising for about 20hrs. Cabin and staff were good as was the food.Cruise director was in the main good but enjoyed his own act! So did we think it was VFM ! no ! Is Travelmarvel Marvelous Not as much as they would like to think ! Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
I wanted a 2 week or longer river cruise holiday. Something that I would say after the holiday, wow that was great. I am so very happy that I went on this cruise! I am back home and I still keep in touch with a staff member. I love that I ... Read More
I wanted a 2 week or longer river cruise holiday. Something that I would say after the holiday, wow that was great. I am so very happy that I went on this cruise! I am back home and I still keep in touch with a staff member. I love that I have kept in contact with them. We never really had enough time to explore the departure city, we did go on a few tours when Wie disembarked the cruise but I can not remember all of the places we went to? I just remember Salzburg which wasn’t such a great tour. It was a slow tour and she didn’t point out every spot where they filmed. It was a disappointing tour! So upset that I can’t remember everything! Most of the other cruisers were really friendly and great to be with. Entertainment was great the night that Lyndsay Hamilton sang. She has a Superb voice! Cabin was kept very clean. Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
Always wanted to cruise the rivers and see the locks. We had done two cruises before but they were on large ships. We found this cruise ship to be a bit small. When the roof was closed due to the locks, there was only the lounge to go. ... Read More
Always wanted to cruise the rivers and see the locks. We had done two cruises before but they were on large ships. We found this cruise ship to be a bit small. When the roof was closed due to the locks, there was only the lounge to go. Only one dining area. Food was great and service excellent. But meal times were bedlam with people rushing for tables and lines waiting for service at the buffet. It was amazing cruising along the rivers and the views terrific. People arrived on the ship coughing and sick, by the time the cruise was ended MOST people were coughing and sick. You could not escape it. The staff were telling peole to use the hand sanitiser. The bus trip to Plague after the cruise while beautiful country everyone was coughing. Being all in the one bus with recycled air, you did not stand a chance of not being sick. We were told the cruise before us a lot of peole were sick with coughing etc. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
My husband and I recently travelled from Budapest. We explored Budapest on our own and joined the ship under our own steam. We spent an hour trying to find the boat, which was not where they explained it would be, and we were lucky to have ... Read More
My husband and I recently travelled from Budapest. We explored Budapest on our own and joined the ship under our own steam. We spent an hour trying to find the boat, which was not where they explained it would be, and we were lucky to have a patient taxi driver who did endless u-turns and asked many questions of the locals to finally find it. Travel Marvel is at the cheaper end of the market, so you get less of the items you might not want less of. It is also clear their boats get the least central berths in major towns. For the cheaper amount you get very average food, less communal space, and cheap deckchairs on top with no waiter service. The roof-top as a space is also very limited, since it is shut down for days at a time, because of low bridges (this may not be limited to Travel Marvel boats, but should be remembered if you like to get out of the confined space of a river boat). The saving grace was our French Balcony cabin which was very comfortable with lots of places to stow your gear. We were most disappointed in the food and the dining room. They squashed us in and the air conditioning strained to provide the coolness we all craved. The food was poorly cooked, a lack of fresh vegetables (very little green) and the fruit lacked variety, mostly melons of varying colours. One day we had fresh strawberries. The German fields were full of ripe strawberries - but we only had them once. The soups tasted like reconstituted Oxo cubes with rehydrated bits of vegetable. The ubiquitous roast chicken (always the fall back position on the menu), came with oversalted gravy. Wines served with meals, were low-end and unvarying, the white mostly a chardonnay, and the red nearly always German (neither of which were good tasting wines). The staff were extremely hard-working, always smiling and very polite, but most had little English, so it was a struggle to be understood, especially noticeable in the dining room when you wanted information on the food or wine. Finally, the evening's entertainment was held in the one Lounge Area which also contained the bar. If you didn't like the entertainment, and the roof deck was shut down, there was nowhere to sit with friends for conversation and/or after-dinner coffee/drinks, other than a few chairs in reception. Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
We chose this trip because the Budapest/Amsterdam river cruise was a bucket list item and this particular cruise was advertised in our local paper at a considerable discount. Travel Marvel is not regarded as a luxury line but we certainly ... Read More
We chose this trip because the Budapest/Amsterdam river cruise was a bucket list item and this particular cruise was advertised in our local paper at a considerable discount. Travel Marvel is not regarded as a luxury line but we certainly had no complaints about anything on this ship. Our tour departed from Budapest on 30 April and arrived in Amsterdam on 14 May. We arrived in Budapest two days early to allow for any flight delays and to have a look around and there is plenty there to keep anyone amused. Embarkation, however, posed one challenge: We were given an address: Mahart International passenger Port, Pier 5 and this caused difficulty for our taxi driver as "Mahart" appears regularly along a fair stretch of the riverfront and the ports are not in order 1,2,3. After a long scenic drive searching we 'phoned Travel Marvel's ship 'phone and a Hungarian speaking employee put our driver straight. Turns out it was so close to our Hotel we could have walked there. Question?? Why did the address not add the simple direction "200 metres South of Liberty Bridge"? Apart from that embarkation was simple. We just walked on board with our cases and paperwork and were pointed towards our cabin. The cabin was on the top deck and compact but comfortable with a double bed, mirrored shelf which doubled as a writing desk at the foot of the bed, two side-chests and a fridge and T.V. in one corner. The two French doors could be opened so that although there was no balcony there was an uninterrupted view of the outside. The bathroom was compact with a shower enclosure, toilet and sink plus the usual noisy vacuum toilet. The wardrobes were in the entrance and were more than adequate. Everything was spotless and Didik, our Indonesian cabin steward, kept it that way. The ship itself is compact with only 149 passengers and all the public areas are clean and well presented. The forward lounge has a small dance floor, musician’s stage, enough seating for everyone and, of course, a compact bar with enough booze choices to keep the most dedicated drinker happy. Beer and wine are complimentary with meals and there are two coffee machines outside the dining room dispensing quite respectable coffee at all hours Food is a highlight. There are 8 chefs on board including one who whips up omelettes to order at breakfast. I also learned that the ship reprovisions every couple of days so that everything is as fresh as possible. As Willem, the Hotel Manager, said “only the best for our guests”. Breakfast is buffet style with cereals, fruit, pastries, muesli, salad and hot dishes on offer. The hot food included the best scrambled eggs I have seen at a buffet and they keep the quantities small with regular top-ups to avoid “tired” food. There is also a selection of pastries and coffee served in the lounge for early and late risers. Morning and afternoon tea are served in the lounge – sandwiches, cakes, soup and a variety of local delicacies – too easy to pile on the kilos if you lack self-discipline. Lunch has three options – hot and cold buffet or special orders like pizzas in the dining room or lighter offerings – soup, sandwiches and cakes in the lounge. This was a popular option as three big meals a day is a bit much for many of us. Dinner is a four course affair with soup, entrée, mains and sweets served by wasitcoated and bow tied waiters and most of us dressed up a bit for this although there was no formal requirement to. Local dishes from the various regions we passed through featured regularly. Boryana, the wine waitress, circled the room demonstrating amazing tray juggling skills while dispensing local wines, beers and special requests and managed to keep everyone’s thirst satisfied. The wait staff were almost all Romanians and were, without exception, efficient, fast and, as they got to know us better, friendly and engaging without becoming overly familiar. The service generally was on a par with the best I have experienced anywhere. Cheri Coll, our cruise director was a Scottish gem and all the shore excursions ran like clockwork. The coaches were always spotless, on time and crewed by a driver and local English speaking guide, always with one coach and guide designated as “gentle walkers” for those with limited mobility. P.A. announcements and the daily guide ensured everyone knew the “all-aboard” times and a simple system of boarding passes with the cabin numbers on them ensured that the reception staff knew when everyone was back. A useful toy on the tours was the “Vox Box” – a compact listening device which enabled the guide to talk to us via headsets without the need to yell above the general noise. Entertainment on board was limited – these are small boats so no singing and dancing extravaganzas – just a talented keyboard player with his synthesizer and electronic piano providing background music. As we passed through the Maine/Danube canal we were also entertained by visiting “lock-hoppers” who boarded at the locks, did their thing then hopped off at another lock, presumably getting back home the same way. These included a Bavarian trio, a couple of singers and one singing duo and a glass blower. For people who like their electronic gizmos and social media there are two guest computers with internet connections available and the ship’s WiFi which was, like all ship WiFis, a bit hit and miss as to speed and availability. It didn’t worry us but if you really must have a fast and reliable connection at all times it would be best to arrange your own. Disembarkation was easy. Passengers placed coloured tags on their bags according to which transfer service they were using, put them outside the cabins at the allocated time then waited in the lounge until the coaches arrived. For those of us making our own arrangements a local taxi company had a rep on board all of the last day in Amsterdam taking bookings for transfers to Hotels and we also booked our transfer from the hotel to the airport with him. His prices were quite reasonable. Overall, we were very satisfied with our cruise and would have no hesitation recommending Travel Marvel to anyone. Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
We have done two previous river cruises: The Mekong and The Douro. This river cruise along the Ayeyarwady (Irrawaddy to visitors) from Mandalay to Yangon (formerly Rangoon) far exceeded our expectations; there were WOW moments every day ... Read More
We have done two previous river cruises: The Mekong and The Douro. This river cruise along the Ayeyarwady (Irrawaddy to visitors) from Mandalay to Yangon (formerly Rangoon) far exceeded our expectations; there were WOW moments every day and the Burmese people could not have been more friendly. Myanmar is a photographer’s dream. I have never taken so many photos of people whilst on holiday; the locals willingly let you take photos of them (we always asked permission first) and I returned home with many wonderful photos not only of the people but their country as well. The Princess Panhwar is used by Travelmarvel and is reasonably new. Travelmarvel organised our flights and transfers and all these arrangements went very well. There were 65 guests on our cruise out of a maximum of 72. We were split up into three groups and the tour guides alternated amongst the groups so we got to know all three of them. We had a cabin with a French balcony with doors that opened to allow in fresh air and a mosquito screen to cover the opening if required. The room was large with plenty of storage. There was a large shower with L’Occitane toiletries, storage under the sink and a magnifying mirror as well as a large mirror over the sink. There is an open sundeck with plenty of shade, an air conditioned lounge and a large restaurant where all meals are taken. The food was excellent with plenty of choice and presentation of the meals was first class. Our 14 night cruise covered the Christmas holiday (but not New Year) and the ship had been decorated accordingly and we had a Christmas meal on Christmas Eve and a visit from Santa (with presents!). A local choir came on board to entertain us. Our tour guides took us to magnificent golden temples, amazing wooden monasteries, local villages, colourful markets, craft workshops and, of course, Mandalay and Yangon. We saw some wonderful sunsets and the sunset over the temples in Bagan and at Ubein Bridge will remain in my memory for a long time. Many of us had taken stationery items for children but unfortunately we didn’t visit a school because the children were on holiday. However, we did get to meet the children in a village; the crew organised food and drinks for them ashore and our stationery items were collected and distributed. It was wonderful seeing how happy the children were during our visit to their village. This cruise is not for the faint hearted. There are lots of tours both morning and afternoon on many of the days particularly near Mandalay but they are not usually longer than a couple of hours. There was more downtime just sailing along the river as we neared Yangon. There are often steep slopes to climb on disembarkation and occasionally whilst out on tour. The crew lined the slope when you got off the ship to give a helping hand to anyone who needed it. Although we were there from mid to late December, it was clear that the river had subsided and I would not wish to go much later in the season. The weather was ideal; not too hot and little humidity until we reached Yangon. Walking around is often on unmade surfaces and entry to some of the temples required climbing steps (although some have lifts). We found the horse and cart ride very uncomfortable and declined to go on the second. Visiting temples more often than not requires you to remove shoes and socks but we were provided with wipes to clean our feet when we came out. This did become quite onerous for some people after a while but it’s a price worth paying to see the amazing temples. There was some entertainment on some evenings such a quizzes and a local puppet show. There were very interesting lectures given by the Cruise Director and tour guides on different aspects of Burmese life. There was also a cookery demonstration and a film about Aung San Suu Kyi. Finally, I must mention the crew. The Captain, his officers and crew were very visible every day, always on hand to help you on and off the ship (this includes the Captain) and always done with a smile. The Cruise Director, San and his two guides, Zaw and Ye Min were very knowledgeable, always friendly and eager for us to enjoy their country of which they are clearly very proud. The Hotel Director, Goran, also deserves a mention for his kindness and unfailing dedication to ensuring we all had a great time on board. Well done, Travelmarvel! Read Less
Sail Date December 2017
Travelmarvel did a great job from start to finish. The Jewel is small but elegant. The whole crew is superbly trained and the desire to please the guests is obvious in everything that they do. The food was first class and the wine ... Read More
Travelmarvel did a great job from start to finish. The Jewel is small but elegant. The whole crew is superbly trained and the desire to please the guests is obvious in everything that they do. The food was first class and the wine plentiful, and good! The cabins are small but perfectly functional. Plenty of storage space for two people. Big thank you to our cabin stewardess, Julia, and our waiter in the restaurant, Pan. Both did a splendid job. Bartel, our cruise director, is extremely knowledgeable about all the areas that we traveled through and forever helpful. The itinerary from Budapest to Amsterdam is action packed with some form of included excursion every day. We did not do any of the optional excursions but did not feel as though we missed out on anything. Some of these involved extensive bus travel that did not sound too attractive. Overall excellent and exceeded our expectations.Highly recommended. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
Having done a number of ocean cruises, we wanted to put a toe in the water with river cruising. Our UK travel agent Iglu Cruise suggested that we try the Rhine and Main cruise as a sensible platform entry. Wow! we were not disappointed. ... Read More
Having done a number of ocean cruises, we wanted to put a toe in the water with river cruising. Our UK travel agent Iglu Cruise suggested that we try the Rhine and Main cruise as a sensible platform entry. Wow! we were not disappointed. From early on it was apparent that Travelmarvel/APT were a very well organised company. As UK residents we had not come across APT before. If all travel/tour companies were like APT then as far as we are concerned the word "complaint" could be deleted from the dictionary. Their attention to detail was impressive and commendable. From the point of embarkation in Amsterdam to the sad day when we had to disembark at Nuremburg the attention to detail continued and got better. All crew members worked so incredibly hard to make the experience for us all so memorable. The itinerary was planned so that the best sections of the Rhine and Rhine Gorge were traversed when everyone was up and awake to take in the splendour. A nice touch that excursions were all included at each of the ports of call, all sensibly balanced and very informative. The food was wonderful! An excellent choice at all mealtimes with inclusive wine, soft drinks and beer at lunch and dinner which was a bonus. The wines varied each day and were of very good quality. Our Cruise Director, Marion Junker, was an absolute star. So knowledgeable, efficient, approachable and always seemed to be in evidence whenever advice or information was needed. On a river ship you cannot expect a large stateroom - however the planning and layout of our mid-range stateroom had so many nooks and crannies, cupboards and niches that there was somewhere to put just about everything. Our cabin steward Marli kept our cabin spotless with all supplies and accessories replaced daily as needed. A very nice touch to have the small fridge ( continually topped up with bottled water each day). The fridge was totally silent in its operation - so no worries for light sleepers! Travelmarvel/APT are an Australian company, so the majority of passengers were from "down under". On our cruise out of a total of 167 only ten of us were British. However this all added to the fun and sense of occasion of the trip. They were all a great bunch- thank you we thoroughly enjoyed your company! Our only regret being, that, as UK residents/passengers we were not aware that our cruise was the first leg of a two week trip that went on to Vienna and Budapest. Had we known then we would certainly have done the full trip. However we look forward to returning to complete the second part of the journey soon. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
Myself and a good friend recently completed the 15 Day River Cruise from Amsterdam to Budapest with Travelmarvel on the "Jewel". We enjoyed everything about the cruise from the time we boarded to the time we disembarked. ... Read More
Myself and a good friend recently completed the 15 Day River Cruise from Amsterdam to Budapest with Travelmarvel on the "Jewel". We enjoyed everything about the cruise from the time we boarded to the time we disembarked. Everything was well organized and all shore tours were conducted in a very professional manner. Our Cabin 315 was small but quite sufficient. The shower was unbelievably good. Always hot water and fantastic pressure. The servicing of the cabins was twice a day and very good indeed. The meals on the ship were excellent and plentiful. The real highlight for us was our Cruise Director - "Roland Noordermeer". You honestly couldn't have asked for a better Cruise Director - he really went above and beyond anything that was expected. His general knowledge was mind-blowing and as we came into various towns he would give a running commentary of the various buildings we were passing by. We would both highly recommend Travelmarvel for cruising this section in Europe - a wonderful experience. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
We sailed mid June from Nuremberg to Budapest.. Cabins were small but very clean, beds comfy.. Breakfast buffet was excellent, lunch could be taken in the dining room or a more relaxed setting in the lounge. Dinner had a plenty of variety. ... Read More
We sailed mid June from Nuremberg to Budapest.. Cabins were small but very clean, beds comfy.. Breakfast buffet was excellent, lunch could be taken in the dining room or a more relaxed setting in the lounge. Dinner had a plenty of variety. Drinks are complimentary with meals but the wine waiter did seem to have her favourite tables and had to be called over for top ups. Trips were well organised with consideration given to those less mobile and able to walk long distances. Lounge is crowded when there are port briefings and both lounge and dining room get very hot, we had temperatures in low 30s and the air con struggled. There is a large sun deck with loungers, deckchairs and covered area, however this is closed at times when going under bridges. Staff on the whole are friendly and helpful although on our last night, we were having a farewell drink with new friends made on the cruise and five out of six of us needed ice only to be told there wasn't any. Our deck had an ice machine so Inwent and got some, handed it to the stewardes and we got our drinks. Couldn't she have done that, the bar wasn't busy and I later saw her go to the same machine for other guests. It's a very relaxing way to see lots of new places. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
What a great experience with Travelmarvel. We had travelled before with this company on a Mekong river cruies and we were so impresssed with the company that we had no hestitation booking this cruise. We have done a lot of ocean cruising ... Read More
What a great experience with Travelmarvel. We had travelled before with this company on a Mekong river cruies and we were so impresssed with the company that we had no hestitation booking this cruise. We have done a lot of ocean cruising with various companies and this river cruise takes a lot of beating. We cannot fault Travelmarvel in anyway, the organisation, food and entertainmenwere excellent. Although the schedule was pretty hectic there was a good ballance between organised trips and free time. The cruise director Andrew was magnificent, his knowledge was unbelievable and together with the rest of the crew a great family atmosphere was provided on the ship. The food and service was exceptional and equivalent to any top class restaurant.This was and excellent value for money cruise and we would recommend this trip. Why pay top dollar prices with other companies when you can get better value for money with this company Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
This trip was recommended by friends who had travelled with Travelmarvel on the Rhine-Main-Danube River cruise. As seniors this was to be our last overseas holiday and we could not have picked a more wonderful holiday. The courtesy and ... Read More
This trip was recommended by friends who had travelled with Travelmarvel on the Rhine-Main-Danube River cruise. As seniors this was to be our last overseas holiday and we could not have picked a more wonderful holiday. The courtesy and warmth of the welcome in Amsterdam continued throughout the cruise. The staff worked so hard to ensure we were spoiled no matter what we were doing or wherever we were on any given day. Our Cruise Director (Roland) was brilliant and no matter how busy he was he always had time to answer a question or make suggestions to enhance our experience. The shore tours were professionally conducted by local tour guides who were very knowledgeable and most patient. There were a number of optional shore tours which generally were centred on locations some distance from the river. Although the live concert in Vienna was just brilliant. The choices in the dining room of the ship were excellent and the beverages flowed freely. We believe the cruise was excellent value for money and would recommend it to anyone who wants to experience the beauty and history of Europe in a most relaxing and pampered manner. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
We chose this cruise as advertised in the telgraph, as it seemed to entirely fill our requirement by calling at several cultural centres along the Danube, then the Danube-Main canal finally along the Rhein to Amsterdam.We elected to have ... Read More
We chose this cruise as advertised in the telgraph, as it seemed to entirely fill our requirement by calling at several cultural centres along the Danube, then the Danube-Main canal finally along the Rhein to Amsterdam.We elected to have two days in Budapest and this was very satisfactory, the Hotel was exceptionally good. First impressions of the ship were agreeable, the cabins were clean and though small, well appointed. Organised ship tours and tips were all included. the first meal on board seemed satisfactory. Next day the journey started with a Bus tour of Budapest, which though appearing short was fairly comprehensive though hurried. The Captains welcoming dinner that evening was satisfactory as expected, however the food appeared bland. The next stop was Vienna where the organised tour was not well organised and people had no free time within the tour, being hurried from different venues particlarly an interesting street market when a simple 'you have a hour , meet back at this point would have avoided being hurried to a pancake tasting, followed by a mediocre wine tasting and dried up cheese sample! we eventually broke off from this tour and did our own thing, which was most satisfactory, arriving at the bus pick up at the appointed time Next day also in Vienna there was no provision to do 'your own thing' and as the ship moved to a new position, returning later to it's original position which precluded getting off. It was apparent at this time that many people were coughing and were in some distress. This manifested in some 40 peple becoming ill and eventually a Doctor came on board at the request of passengers and not initiated by the ship. With so many people becoming ill it is difficult to understand why no initative was not taken by the Cruise Company. As it was it seemed that most people suffered from a severe chest infection, some ten being prescribed antibiotics, the doctor consultation and the drugs paid for by each patient. My Partner and I, were recovering naturally, however we were not well enought to go ashore until the ship reached Rudesheim. Here we had hoped to have some respite from the Bland and uninteresting food on the ship, however that was not to be as the ship sailed at 2pm before the restaurants opened! And so, we gradually got better and looked forward to a day in Cologne, which as it happened did not happen!. The ship had docked that night at some mysterious location and only proceeded to Cologne next morning, arriving at mid morning. We could not understand why the ship had not contiued overnight. The ship was docked some distance from the city centre and it was raining, people who went off early on a tour returned at 2pm when the coach was available to 'shuttle' but as the last returning shuttle was at 4.30 there was no time to make a satisfactory visit. Early in the day we had asked for a shuttle sevice to the City but were told we would have to get a Taxi! which seemed a retrograde way to treat passengers who had paid quite a large sum for the cruise and now wishing to do some shopping. Finally we arrived in Amsterdam and did the included canal excursion but as the windows of the Canal Boat were so misted up we saw little. Its was mentioned to the guide but she had no was to rectify that situation. By this time we had had enough, being exhausted from sickness and disapointed from the lack of consideration. and poor food. We also found it exasperating that people would complain at the table about the quality of the food but when asked by the staff if 'everything was 'OK' responded by sayin 'yes it was lovely' when in reality it was poor. It is unlikely that we would travel with this company again. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
Being able to cruise the Irrawaddy River was a privilege, seeing Burma at this time was fascinating. The people of Burma are wonderful, the crew could not do enough for us. The Chef cooked me a special meal each night as I have dietary ... Read More
Being able to cruise the Irrawaddy River was a privilege, seeing Burma at this time was fascinating. The people of Burma are wonderful, the crew could not do enough for us. The Chef cooked me a special meal each night as I have dietary problems, always with a smile on his face. Our guides were the best, very passionate about their country. The whole crew was always on hand to help us climb the riverbank to disembark at each destination, and would say Ming Ga La Bah, (their greeting), and there again when we came back from our excursions. From walking tours, pony trap rides, tuk tuks, bus, every one an adventure. Local artisans would come on board for shows, and a great New Year on a sand spit in the middle of the Irrawaddy River highlights of our cruise. Travelmarval I hand it to you, you have got it right, I will have no hesitation in travels with this company again. Jan Riccobono Read Less
Sail Date December 2016
Relaxing way to visit Burma. This holiday was booked through Travelmarvel on a full board basis and we both thoroughly enjoyed it. The boat was modern and immaculately clean and all staff could not do enough for us, even cleaning our shoes ... Read More
Relaxing way to visit Burma. This holiday was booked through Travelmarvel on a full board basis and we both thoroughly enjoyed it. The boat was modern and immaculately clean and all staff could not do enough for us, even cleaning our shoes every day. The food was five star and the choice was amazing. Wine and beer was served freely in the restaurant and was of very good quality. The cabins were spacious with comfy beds and good air conditioning. The sun deck had plenty of shade on hot days and was a nice place to watch the world go by as we cruised downriver in the afternoons. Sightseeing was at a comfortable pace, usually in the morning, and the staff all helped us on and off the boat. We cannot fault the service and hospitality on the Princess Panhwar. The staff soon became friends who were keen to share the history and culture of their beautiful country and also their hope for a democratic government in the future. We felt totally safe the whole time we were there and would encourage others to visit before it changes too much. Read Less
Sail Date September 2016
The river cruise was amazing from the moment we stepped on board to the moment we disembarked. The ship was very well appointed,the staff were wonderful would do anything to make your trip more enjoyable. We had the best tour guide ... Read More
The river cruise was amazing from the moment we stepped on board to the moment we disembarked. The ship was very well appointed,the staff were wonderful would do anything to make your trip more enjoyable. We had the best tour guide her name was Cherie she was Scottish but has lived in Austria for many years. Cherie looked after us like a mother hen, getting doctors and dentists for guests when needed which was a couple of times. The tours off the ship were so well organised and very knowledgable guides. Great little towns with cobblestone streets and lots of history. The visit with the residents of Wertheim was very enjoyable we were made to feel very welcome. The host we had would not let us go until we had tried all 3 different cakes she had made which were delicious we were then given a small gift. The food on board the ship was very good. Great size servings and quite a few options. The entertainment which was organised was very enjoyable. Another thing to note if you need laundry done there is a cost but it is very reasonable not like on Ocean cruising. Another highlight was the night time cruise down the Danube in Budapest with all the buildings illuminated and wonderful classical music playing. We also did the Mozart concert in Vienna which was certainly worth the money. We had been on a 10 day Swiss Alps tour before with Travelmarvel and met the most wonderful group of people who were with us on the tour and the river cruise. This tour was well organised and we stayed at good hotels. The trip we did on the Glacier Express through the Swiss Alps was amazing. I would have no trouble recommending Travelmarvel and would certainly travel with them again. Read Less
Sail Date September 2016
I had travelled the Rhine by train, and so, having seen this Amsterdam to Basel Rhine cruise advertised at a discount, we decided to book our first river cruise. All our previous cruises had been ocean cruises. We were met at Amsterdam ... Read More
I had travelled the Rhine by train, and so, having seen this Amsterdam to Basel Rhine cruise advertised at a discount, we decided to book our first river cruise. All our previous cruises had been ocean cruises. We were met at Amsterdam airport and the shuttle connection to the waterfront all worked as planned. On this particular cruise most of the passengers were from Australia - so no language problems. We understood from the crew that the previous cruise had been mainly German passengers - something you may want to check before booking. The cabin or stateroom was easily as good as anything we had seen on ocean cruises. There was hand and shower soap; a hair drier; towels; dressing gowns; mineral water; all provided. There were four German style 220 volt plug sockets - don't forget your adapters. There is a small gym consisting of a recumbent exercise bike, a normal exercise bike, and hand weights with bench. The excursions were all inclusive and interesting. For only one of the excursions you were requested to express interest via a list several days in advance - otherwise, excursions were casual, just arrive in the lounge at the specified times. And the excursions were easily as good as those you would pay $70 to $100 for on an ocean cruise. Obviously, the advantage of cruising the Rhine is that most points of interest come to you. There were always fellow passengers viewing and photographing the locks that we passed through, as most of the Rhine is canalised. Historically, the Rhine falls prevented travel by boat along the full length from Amsterdam to Basel. The Rhine Gorge was the best part of the journey for me. Meals were at set-times which did change some days due to excursion times: however typically - breakfast 7-9am, late self-serve breakfast in the Queen's Garden till 10:30am, lunch 1pm, afternoon tea 4:30pm, dinner 7pm; late snacks 10:30pm. Just to say that menus were not a la carte but set meals. For dinner you might expect salad, soup, sorbet, choice of two meat/fish dishes and one vegetarian, choice of two deserts, cheese and fruit. So you never felt hungry! House wines and beer, tea, coffee, water were all inclusive at the set meals. The wine list alternated between two selections, and so alternate days there was a very good Italian Merlot which was excellent. The German red wine on the other evening was pretty good also. My wife drank the rose, but she said it wasn't the best. At the Captain's dinner we had a genuinely decent German Sekt which was very nice and far better than the cheap Spanish prosecco you get to expect. So in general, must drinking took place during meals but you could get beer, wine, cocktails including the cocktail of the day at the bar if you wanted to pay. There was a permanent Cruise/Tour Director named Kate Barella on board. She did the announcements and made all your arrangements, including your transfers at the end of the cruise - so you paid her attention, if not for her announcements then her dry sense of humour - a lovely lady. The wifi was generally poor and only usable in the lounges, but slow, but it was free/inclusive. The entertainment was limited, but the resident keyboard musician was quite accomplished. If you wonder how good this cruise was - I took over five hundred pictures - it was great. Read Less
Sail Date July 2016
We chose this cruise as it was our first river boat experience and were apprehensive about the smaller confined boat, so only did a 7 night one and then continued to see other countries by ourselves. The crew were lovely, our cabin 322 ... Read More
We chose this cruise as it was our first river boat experience and were apprehensive about the smaller confined boat, so only did a 7 night one and then continued to see other countries by ourselves. The crew were lovely, our cabin 322 was fine, small but enough room, maybe little close to the back deck Queens Garden, some people got up early and talked loudly ( it is where they put out some pastries for early risers, also coffee and tea there.) You could participate in excursions or stay on boat!! The dining experience a bit of a kafuffle, as you just grab a seat, no seating plan. We did meet a nice couple who on the last four days we ate with! Food was ok, I felt that could have been improved having less courses but better quality, just some simple grills, mostly very German type food, soups bland and thin, sweets average, most meat dishes seemed to be stewed meat of some description. Salads ok best thing was cheese and fruit. Our only real negative was that at embarkation we arrived solo as had been in Amsterdam for few days, and at the wharf very hard to find Travel Marvel as only an APT tent., who are the mother company. When we stood there, where we were told, the APT porters were downright rude, made us and another couple feel we should move, no help at all!! TRAVEL MARVEL SHOULD HAVE THERE OWN TENT, WAS NOT GOOD ENOUGH, THE PORTERS ACTUALLY TURNED UP THEIR NOSES AS WE WEREN'T WITH APT. BAD NEWS NOT A GOOD START TO TOUR. Next time would try another company although think we prefer big boat cruising more privacy, always a nook to get away from crowds. Read Less
Sail Date July 2016
Great offer from Iglu Cruise. We chose a lower deck cabin with two very large circular portholes. The cabin was very roomy with lots of storage and beautiful shower-room. It had safe deposit box, fridge and three free bottles of ... Read More
Great offer from Iglu Cruise. We chose a lower deck cabin with two very large circular portholes. The cabin was very roomy with lots of storage and beautiful shower-room. It had safe deposit box, fridge and three free bottles of water daily. The beds were very comfortable and the cabin kept immaculately clean. Embarcation was very smooth and our reception very welcoming. The staff in all areas were friendly, efficient and professional. The whole ship had a very family-atmosphere from the Captain down - everyone was very approachable. The food, drink (included with lunch and dinner), and service were some of the best we have encountered. The food and drink supplied reflected the areas we travelled through. The variety and quantity of food was excellent at all meals. On two evenings local entertainers were brought on board, which proved to be popular with the guests. The ports of call (even the ones we had not heard of) were excellent with very good guides. During excursions we were supplied with radio headsets enabling us to get a good commentary from the guides. Disappointed we did not stop at the Square of the Heroes in Budapest. However, we were delighted with the evening sail up the Danube in daylight, coming back down to Budapest in the evening with all the lights on. Optional excursions: They were our only disappointment. Trip to Schonnburg Palace. We spent one hour with guide in Palace and then had one hour to see the extensive gardens, carriages museum, zoo and maze. We would have preferred much longer in the grounds. Also, when we went to the Vienna concert we were unable to see the dancers due to the poor seating - and we were near the front. An excellent cruise we would recommend. Read Less
Sail Date June 2016
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