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43 Avalon Waterways Nuremberg Cruise Reviews

From the moment we were met at the Prague airport by an Avalon representative who brought us to the hotel to meet our amazing cruise director, then from the moment we boarded our ship, to when the time came to disembark for our return home ... Read More
From the moment we were met at the Prague airport by an Avalon representative who brought us to the hotel to meet our amazing cruise director, then from the moment we boarded our ship, to when the time came to disembark for our return home (again with representatives escorting us to our departure area), we experienced nothing but First Class Service - all the way - by all of the Avalon employees, tour guides and others. On the ship, the attention to the smallest of details was amazing. The crew members on board were kind and friendly, always smiling, going the extra mile to help you – whether it was answering your questions or accommodating a special request for dinner. The buffet breakfasts and lunches, and dinners from menu choices, were some of the best dining out we've ever had-- worthy of the finest restaurants anywhere-- such choices and diversity, and perfect portion sizes. Our staterooms were very comfortable, we especially found the ‘fire in the fireplace’ feature to be fun and cozy. The lounges were warm and inviting, especially after returning from walking about on some damp, chilly days. It was nice to have a choice of larger lounge with bar (and excellent cocktails including specialty ones) and entertainment, as well as a smaller quiet lounge at the end of the ship for reading or just relaxing too (with snacks and coffee 24/7). There was even a small but nicely equipped fitness room with the basics which, with the tours and all else, we didn't even need. On our tours, our guides knew their stuff and enlightened us with their many insights on their country, culture and custom-- one of the trip highlights for us. What a fantastic trip we had for our first time ever cruise! It was the most relaxing and stress-free vacation we have ever experienced, and we loved the size of the ship--big enough but quite a nice size for such a cruise. We’d choose Avalon and the Imagery II again in a flash. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
Had always wanted to see Christmas Markets and seeing them via a cruise sounded idyllic - it was. From the time we boarded to disembarking we were looked after superbly. The Cruise Director (Valentin) was very efficient with a great ... Read More
Had always wanted to see Christmas Markets and seeing them via a cruise sounded idyllic - it was. From the time we boarded to disembarking we were looked after superbly. The Cruise Director (Valentin) was very efficient with a great sense of humor which made everything run very smoothly. All the staff were very friendly and determined to make our trip as enjoyable as possible. The excursions were well planned and the guides spoke excellent English and were most informative. We were fortunate to go on the Wilhering Abbey excursion which was most interesting. The girls who conducted the tour have the makings of great tour guides. The Abbey was spectacular - one of the best we have seen. The markets were interesting, the best being the one in Vienna. The most memorable event was when the guide sang 'Silent Night' in German in Passau when it was snowing. Would we do another Avalon Cruise? In a heartbeat! Would we recommend Avalon Cruises? Without hesitation! Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
I had previously been on another river cruise with a different company and wanted to try Avalon Waterways to compare. Avalon far exceeded my expectations and I would highly recommend using them. We enjoyed the ship, our cabin, the food, ... Read More
I had previously been on another river cruise with a different company and wanted to try Avalon Waterways to compare. Avalon far exceeded my expectations and I would highly recommend using them. We enjoyed the ship, our cabin, the food, amazing friendly staff (cruise director Valentin was the best, with his extensive knowledge and wicked humor, as was Melinda our cabin person who went above and beyond to make us feel welcome and at home) and the ports and shore excursions. We especially enjoyed all the Christmas markets, but Vienna was my favorite. The charm of the city was right up my alley and the symphony excursion was one to remember forever. We also thoroughly enjoyed the school excursion which, I was told, was a trial for future cruises. I would say YES to keeping this as part of your itinerary! This was my last overseas vacation and definitely one of the best experiences. Thank you, Avalon Waterways! Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
We were intrigued by the Christmas Markets and seeing multiple countries. This cruise did not dissapoint. Everything was top notch. The excursions were interesting, the lounges were cozy and provided games to onboard entertainment, food ... Read More
We were intrigued by the Christmas Markets and seeing multiple countries. This cruise did not dissapoint. Everything was top notch. The excursions were interesting, the lounges were cozy and provided games to onboard entertainment, food was good- lots of choices. We were kept informed of all activities on a daily basis. The staff was over the top friendly. The rooms were tidied twice a day. Everything went off without a hitch. We did miss the Christmas market in Nuremberg as it was actually opening the next day, but to make up for it, we were refunded our fee to Salzburg. Our cruise was a mix of ages, from older teens to seniors, and the ship was very accommodating. We would definitely like to do another cruise with Avalon at some point. We had a nice overview of all the cities we stopped in, and will definitely go back to some of the cities to spend more time. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
This was our second cruise on Avalon, the first was on the Rhine in September, 2017. I want to emphasize that the part of the cruise that could be controlled by Avalon was exceptional, Avalon will continue to be our first choice for river ... Read More
This was our second cruise on Avalon, the first was on the Rhine in September, 2017. I want to emphasize that the part of the cruise that could be controlled by Avalon was exceptional, Avalon will continue to be our first choice for river cruises. Cabin, dining and service were all exemplary! The hotels in Prague and Budapest were superb! Valentin, the cruise director, was personable, helpful and hilarious. The disappointing part of this experience was caused by the water level on the Danube. The itinerary had us transferring by bus from Prague to Nuremberg with an included excursion in Old Town Nuremberg. Due to the low water level we boarded at a different port and missed Nuremberg. Thus began a three day effort to get back on schedule. We spent a lot of time being bused to different excursions, so much so that it very much felt like a coach tour of Eastern Europe instead of a Danube cruise. We did visit some extraordinary towns, Passau, Salzburg, Vienna, Melk and others. Finally, the river was closed again in Budapest and we had to be bused from Slovakia. Avalon did their best to ameliorate the inconvenience of "busing": - All passengers were treated to a concert in Vienna. This was supposed to have been an optional excursion. Passengers who had paid in advance for this concert received a refund. - When we were bused to an included excursion we were provided cash for lunch since we would not be able to eat on the ship. - When we were bused to Budapest, the last stop on the cruise, we were given the option of returning to the ship after the excursion or checking into the hotel a night early at Avalon's expense. - Finally, Avalon provided a substantial partial refund of fare to compensate for the inconvenience. I was very satisfied with the cruise and Avalon's efforts to satisfy us. All that being said, I would book another cruise on the Danube but not that late in the season. The cities visited were amazing. And, of course, the Avalon experience was ourstanding. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
This was our third Avalon cruise. We had done the Rhine and the Seine cruises and loved them, so of course we stayed with Avalon. If you haven't done the Rhine, this tour does go by the Rhine castles and Lorelei Rock. I think that ... Read More
This was our third Avalon cruise. We had done the Rhine and the Seine cruises and loved them, so of course we stayed with Avalon. If you haven't done the Rhine, this tour does go by the Rhine castles and Lorelei Rock. I think that is really the high point of the Rhine cruise. (Plus, the Rhine is more industrial, which this tour is defiantly more scenic) On this cruise, the ship sails on the Danube canal, Main River, Rhine canal and Mossel River. There is very little industry, so the scenery is just beautiful, especially the mountains on the Mossel with the vineyards. We did the tour extension and started in Prague. Since our plane was late, we only had one full day in Prague, and that really isn't enough in this awesome city. We did the Avalon tour as well as Hidden Treasures and the Folklore dinner. We enjoyed all of them. Avalon's hotel, Hilton, did not meet our expectations due to very noisy (think jackhammer) construction that takes place from 10 to 7 pm. Although it was a superior hotel with beautiful rooms, not being able to hold a conversation in our room due to noise was not acceptable. However, this was a wonderful cruise. It helped that we had a fantastic Austrian cruise direction, Helmut, who kept things moving with Swiss precision. Not only were his evening cruise briefings concise and funny, but he was always there to make sure that our local guides had us where we were supposed to be He did a superior job of organizing our transfers off the ship. The crew of the ship were excellent. Of course our cabins were spotless, as was the ship and dining areas. The meals were delicious. Breakfast was buffet, with any food you could imagine, including an omelet station, which was particularly popular. Lunch also offered a great selection. Dinner was 4-5 courses, and you have a choice for each course. They serve wine and beer with lunch and dinner, complimentary. The ship also served tea at 4:00 with baked goods and sandwiches. We found all the food fantastic! Our lounge singer was ok, but the entertainers they brought onboard were excellent. The Imagery II is a great ship. Avalon has made the rooms bigger than they were formerly; there is more room in the shower now and a little table by the french balcony. They have scented oil diffusers in the bathroom, but took them out at my request due to my allergies. The rooms on the mid deck all have the sliding glass door that runs the length of your room. This is wonderful when you are up early and sailing into a port. You can sit in bed and watch the world go by. The lower levels do not have these windows, and our friends on the lower deck would see swan asses sail by. However, our friend on the lower decks felt like they were rarely in their rooms, which is generally true. We did all of the included and extra tours that Avalon offered. We enjoyed all the included tours. We would have skipped the "VINEYARDS, VILLAGES & VIEWS OF THE MOSELLE" because we went to a former nunnery that didn't exist, and it was meaningless. However the first half of the tour was interesting in that we saw how sparkling wine was made. Our tour guide knew a lot of information about growing wine grapes, and that was interesting. Ports were exceptionally beautiful with medieval half timbered houses. Wurzberg is a stand out for the bishop's residence and Trier for its Roman ruins. We would have liked to spend more time in those towns. Bamberg is a breathtaking beautiful town. I like that Avalon now offers activities to suit different fitness levels. We did the average group, which was usually around 2-4 miles of walking. There was a gentle walking group for those who didn't want to walk that much. There is a fast paced group that goes on hikes to castles and bike rides. People seemed to enjoy having neat options. I am very glad that we did this cruise. It was relaxing and enjoyable. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
As a former travel agent, I have done extensive research and constant certification in many cruise lines and land travel suppliers. Avalon has been at the top of my list for some time. Although it is not the highest end in luxury, it was ... Read More
As a former travel agent, I have done extensive research and constant certification in many cruise lines and land travel suppliers. Avalon has been at the top of my list for some time. Although it is not the highest end in luxury, it was every bit a luxury experience for my husband and myself. First let me tell you that the staff could not have been more attentive and knowledgeable. They were always at hand to help with any needs or wants. Our Cruise Director was heads above others and she was fun, informative and invested in the experience she gives all clients on board her ship as well as when we were on land. The ship was very well appointed and was comfortable no matter where you were on board. The main lounge had lots of seating and the floor to ceiling windows allowed us to always see where we were while still enjoying lectures, or entertainment. There were a number of areas for gathering and all were clean and comfortable. Always stocked with snacks and coffee and tea bars. Access was easy to all areas. The upper deck was great for relaxing and watching the scenery go by. And we had a great cookout up on the deck. Very fun for all! Our cabin was roomy with great storage in the closet and under the bed. The bathroom was bright and easy to maneuver with the two of us. Now it is not what I would call oversized but my husband and I found it to be comfortable. We had a small sofa with a round table and a comfortable chair. There was also a desk and chair giving us good counter space. The bed was amazing!! Was king size and the most comfortable bed that I have ever slept in. I have trouble with my hips especially after extensive walking during the day, and I never had pain at all in the bed. The floor to ceiling panorama windows were fabulous for viewing although we did not spend a great deal of time in our cabin as there were so many fun people to meet. The dining experience was great! The food and selections were fantastic. The main dining room was inviting and clean and easy to find a table. Breakfast and lunch were buffet style and were loaded with options and great selections. Dinner was a four course meal but you did not have to select all four courses. Was great that you could make your selections. My husband is very much a foodie and he loved each new meal even more than the last. I tend to be a bit picky but found many options and loved everything that I dined on. In the Panorama Lounge, at the same time that meals were served in the dining room, there was always light selections that were every bit as delicious as what was being served in the dining room. Afternoon tea was delightful and always had a wide selection of finger sandwiches, fruit and yummy desserts. In the rear lounge, there was always coffee, tee and a selection of cookies and desserts of the day. The entertainment was exceptional on board the ship. In the evening, there was a piano player that had a great variety of music. He was talented and able to supplement his piano playing with background instrumentation that was recorded. He kept us dancing every night! He also played during lunch and tea time in the Panorama Lounge daily. We had several entertainment opportunities from people brought on board for our pleasure. Several lectures that were informative and fun (especially the beer tasting). We had a Cabaret singer that not only had a powerful singing voice but was hilarious in-between songs. We had two gentlemen come in that were top musicians and each played about 30 different instruments. They were phenomenal and also had a good comedy routine in-between entertaining us with their musical prowess. The shore excursions were great. Informative and historical combined to keep us interested and the locations were amazing. We saw and experienced so much with each excursion. There were excursions included everyday and we also did some that we added on. Each one was different than the next but kept us interested and amazed. Avalon did a great job with each one and we were taken in very comfortable and clean motor coaches to each destination. We were given audio instruments that allowed our guide to speak to us giving us the history and interesting information about the sites we were visiting. Overall we were very happy with the choices that were made. The only enrichment activity that I would have liked would be cooking with the chef or some type of cooking lecture. I have relived all of our experiences everyday since we returned home through the thousand pictures that we took. I look forward to the next river cruise and it will definitely be on Avalon - they did not disappoint in any way! Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
My wife and her elderly parents booked Avalon Waterways Blue Danube Discovery Cruise. This was intended to be a "trip of a lifetime" for my 88-year-old mother-in-law. My father-in-law, who is 90, had been saving for years to make ... Read More
My wife and her elderly parents booked Avalon Waterways Blue Danube Discovery Cruise. This was intended to be a "trip of a lifetime" for my 88-year-old mother-in-law. My father-in-law, who is 90, had been saving for years to make her dream a reality. Despite spending nearly $8,500, this dream, was instead a nightmare. While they were still healthy enough to participate in such an adventure, my father-in-law, asked my wife and me to plan the trip and accompany them. After doing extensive research, I (unfortunately) selected Avalon Waterways. To be fair and honest, I must report that the ship was very nice, the staff and crew were very accommodating, and the food was very good. HOWEVER, our experience was NOT EVEN CLOSE to the cruise that is portrayed in the slick advertising brochures and web photos. BUYER BEWARE!!! So, back to the specifics of our experience. As I mentioned, this was intended to be a true trip of a lifetime for my 88-year-old mother-in-law. Highlights of that dream included: visiting Nuremburg and Budapest; sitting on the deck of the ship for hours and hours, just relaxing and watching the world go by; being pampered with exemplary service, and gourmet food; and the ability to see much of Europe from the deck of a ship, not driving around in vans or buses. I want to clearly disclose that the root cause of the issues encountered was extremely low water conditions. Clearly, that is not something Avalon can control or is responsible for. HOWEVER, the manner in which they dealt with these conditions are the reason for our dissatisfaction and complaints. We realize that changes to the cruise itinerary were necessitated by nature and are not Avalon’s fault. None-the-less, the actual itinerary was dramatically different than what we booked, and had we known this in advance, we would have never booked this trip. Although the Cruise Director and local staff did their very best, the manner in which Avalon handled this situation and the significant changes caused were disappointing. We were initially informed of the itinerary changes and just 4 days prior to cruise departure. Although Avalon offered a 100% refund, at that point, we were already in Europe, so couldn’t cancel the flights, other bookings, nor utilize our trip insurance. We were stuck and had limited options. I did some research and found that the LOW WATER CONDITIONS WERE KNOWN FOR QUITE SOME TIME, yet Avalon chose to wait until the last minute (obviously to try and salvage their revenue from the trip). While this was good for Avalon, it was not for their passengers. We even discovered that other competitors of Avalon's had contacted their customers weeks in advance, and several had even cancelled their trips and issued full refunds / credits in order to treat their customers fairly. Avalon, however, was focused solely on profitability. The net result was fewer nights on board than we had booked and significant time in tightly-packed buses, rather than a full week relaxing aboard a luxury cruise ship, as envisioned and paid for. Specifically, • We spent 6 nights on the ship, instead of 7, and 1 night in a dingy hotel. While it may not seem like a big deal, it is a 15% reduction vs. what we’d paid for; plus, for 88 and 90 year old people, packing, unpacking, lugging suitcases for a one-night stay is hard work and very undesirable. • The hotel Avalon Waterways booked in Nuremberg was mid-level, at best, and in NO WAY comparable to the Avalon Artistry II. The rooms were tiny and lacked air conditioning. We had to sleep with the windows open to get air, but then were kept up all night due to the loud noises on the street. None of us slept a bit. Additionally, the food at the hotel was atrocious! Dinner was barely edible, and certainly not in any way gourmet; breakfast was simply terrible. Only the flies that were all over the food buffet seemed to be happy. • If we had wanted a bus tour of Europe (which was NOT my mother-in-law’s dream trip), we would have booked that and paid a fraction of what we paid Avalon. Driving around on a cramped bus is not appealing to us, nor anything close to what we paid for. We would never sign up for that kind of vacation. The modified itinerary included 7 hours of bus time. This equates to a full day’s worth of bus time, rather than time relaxing on the deck of a luxury ship. While we understand the reason for this, it is not what we paid for. It was painful, and not pleasurable. • Missing Nuremburg – even though Avalon did bus us to Nuremberg, we didn’t arrive there until 4:45pm and had prior, non-changeable bookings to depart very early the next morning (based on the original cruise itinerary). Therefore, even though we stayed overnight in Nuremburg, there was no opportunity to schedule a tour or even walk around to get to know the city. As a result, one more of my mother-in-law’s dreams was not fulfilled because of the changes to the itinerary. Upon our return, in an attempt to provide Avalon with feedback and give them a chance to make this right, we contacted Avalon’s Customer Service. We advised them of the numerous issues encountered and of our dissatisfaction. We also provided abundant documentation, so there was no doubt about our representations. Avalon acknowledged that the product / service we received was not the one advertised or paid for, yet Avalon refused to accept any responsibility or even attempt to make this right. The Rep asserted that they had already provided compensation in the form of a complementary concert in Vienna and a free walking tour of Linz (which we didn’t do since we’d paid for the concurrently scheduled Cesky Krumlov tour). While it is true that Avalon did provide us with a complementary concert in Vienna, this was not something of great interest, had a value of only $82, and was insufficient and insulting "compensation" (just 3% of our trip cost!) for a trip costing over $2,200/ea that had been dramatically altered and diminished. After escalating to a supervisor and providing further documentation, Avalon simply referred us to their fine-print Terms and Conditions and suggested that if we were still dissatisfied, that we pursue legal resolution. While we could probably prevail given the facts and circumstances (based on discussions with a couple of lawyers in my family), this would be a very costly and time-consuming path to pursue. Clearly, the legal terms and conditions are stacked against the average consumer and heavily favor this BIG COMPANY. So instead of pursing this expensive and time-consuming path, we feel compelled to advise and warn other potential customers before they spend their hard-earned money with Avalon and endure an equally distasteful experience. In short, we would never have signed up for this trip had we known what we now know. If Avalon Waterways were a customer-oriented company, they COULD HAVE dealt with this like many of the other cruise companies did. For example, they could have: 1. Cancelled the trip entirely and offered refunds or rebooking on another departure that was as advertised 2. They could have contacted us BEFORE we departed the United States, advised us of the situation, and provided us with the option of joining this modified trip or obtaining a refund or rebooking on future departure 3. They could have provided a hotel (on the night they forced us to depart the ship early) that was consistent in terms of accommodations and food 4. And, even after the trip, their Customs Service could have offered an appropriate partial refund (or credit towards a future trip) as a gesture to compensate for the numerous issues we had In short, The Avalon Artistry II is a very nice ship, with outstanding food, and professional accommodating staff. It is also very expensive. For that cost, one expects to receive the level of service and accommodations advertised, or to be treated fairly and properly compensated if / when something goes wrong. Avalon Waterways is simply more concerned about its profitability than its reputation and customers. BUYER BEWARE!!!! Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
We were comparing Viking and Avalon as we knew nothing about either. We chose Avalon as it was the right timing and we received free air fare. Lol. We really didn't know much about destinations or places we wanted to see but ... Read More
We were comparing Viking and Avalon as we knew nothing about either. We chose Avalon as it was the right timing and we received free air fare. Lol. We really didn't know much about destinations or places we wanted to see but thought we would start with the Danube and see what that was like. We quickly found that the destination was only part of the trip. We enjoyed every minute of the time we spent on the Avalon Impression. The cruise director, Kristine was a delight. So organized and seemed to know all passengers in a very short time. She was so informative and helpful at every turn. The Captain Roland was also wonderful. He took time to answer questions and made us feel like he was at home with his ship and we felt well cared for on the water. The ship its self was very nice. The rooms seemed adequate in the space we had and supplied everything we needed. Our room attendant, Flory was delightful. She kept us put together at all times and was so polite and helpful, we had no complaints. We so enjoyed meeting the other travelers from different places and had overall an amazing experience. This was a trip I never imagined I would get to experience and Avalon made it one I hope to do again. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
Traveled with a teen and since it was summer there were other teens on board. There are no programs or plans for children/teens though so not recommended if you are looking for someone to entertain them. Ship crew is very friendly and hard ... Read More
Traveled with a teen and since it was summer there were other teens on board. There are no programs or plans for children/teens though so not recommended if you are looking for someone to entertain them. Ship crew is very friendly and hard working, overall great. Included tours are perfect for an intro to the area although not so great if you want to sleep as most are in the morning. They use local guides that are quite knowledgeable and some are also very entertaining. Schedules are dependent on water levels so some changes to ports and shore excursions may affect your cruise. Be sure you are not too set on seeing a particular site from the cruise as it could be changed. Highly recommend flying in at least one day prior to relax, rest and see the starting destination (you may be bused to a new starting destination and not see that destination at all). Dining was open seating ala carte for dinner, buffet for breakfast and lunch. There was also dining options in the lounge which is recommended to try for a more casual, relaxed meal at your own pace (same menu as the dining room but smaller portions and a buffet). Overall the ship is extremely clean. Beverage service was a little slow. Disembarkation was wonderful, smooth, efficient and quick. There was a variety of ages on the ship with several teens traveling with family up to retired adults. This cruise attracts more active travelers rather than passive although everyone is welcome. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
I am so happy that my Travel Agent selected the Avalon Waterways. This was my first trip to Europe and I can honestly say I was treated like Royalty. Not only were the accommodations excellent, also were the staff. Never have I seen staff ... Read More
I am so happy that my Travel Agent selected the Avalon Waterways. This was my first trip to Europe and I can honestly say I was treated like Royalty. Not only were the accommodations excellent, also were the staff. Never have I seen staff so committed to their job. The atmosphere was like family and we had so much fun with everyone from the Captain Ronald to Director Tony. There was never a dull moment with so many options for excursions offered. The best part is that many of the excursions offered were included with additional excursions offered at a very reasonable price. Let me also mention the food...delicious! All meals offered fresh food options as well as many non-meat options for those vegetarians. Included was a lounge that offered non-alcohol drinks, cookies and pastries at all times! The rooms were always attended to and the finishes were lovely. I can't wait to return!! Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
We loved Avalon...the wait staff in the kitchen were so awesome!!! We loved Kalinka!!! All of the food very good and fresh...all the staff very helpful, especially the front desk..so nice and helpful.... George the piano player was very ... Read More
We loved Avalon...the wait staff in the kitchen were so awesome!!! We loved Kalinka!!! All of the food very good and fresh...all the staff very helpful, especially the front desk..so nice and helpful.... George the piano player was very nice, and good...wish there was a bit more exciting entertainment although I know that's kind of tough with the size of the lounge...and I think you need to give some more choices in the free included tours..would be nice to offer a few more exciting choices that you don't have to pay too much for. Our cruise director was also great, very organized and to the point!!! She ran a very good ship....I also wish there could have been some massage services or a little bit of pool would have been nice, but again I know with the size of the ship maybe not possible....It was really convenient being so close to all of the restaurants...and lounges...we loved it! Also, the fitness program needs work...a couple of times when our traveling friends were going to do one of the active tours, it would kind of fizzle or it wasn't really done the way it was listed to be...So I think that needs some attention... Otherwise, everything was fantastic! Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
Wanted to go on a relaxing and upscale Riverboat Cruise and this was Not my first one. I was really disappointed in the service and the staff. The food presentation was very nice but the food was not great. The Service from the ... Read More
Wanted to go on a relaxing and upscale Riverboat Cruise and this was Not my first one. I was really disappointed in the service and the staff. The food presentation was very nice but the food was not great. The Service from the dining room was really below par. Not at all what I expected. They were taking our dishes before we were even finished with our food. G-d help you if you were a few minutes later than others at a table. They rushed you out and even told you the others were almost done. What does that have to do with your dining? A majority of the staff, including the Hotel Manager and Dining room manager were wearing so much cologne that the trail followed them all the time. I have an allergy to perfumes and they were asked not wear it and after the request was made, they wore more. They were totally inconsiderate!!!! Made my trip a living hell.! I do not understand why people working in close quarters with the public have to wear fragrances and so much of it. It really is a pollutant. The ship was a new one and was pretty and well laid out. A shame the Customer Relations was So Poor. Also, I thought the included tours were really minimal. I guess thats how they get you to spend more for additional excursions. Avalon , I was told was upscale. I think Not. Last time I went on AMA and thought they did a much better job. The added entertainment on board was pretty bad also. They used the lounge for yoga, so you really could not relax during the classes. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
Great cruise with a company that made our trip so memorable. Cabin was very comfortable and staff was so helpful and friendly. Our ports and excursions were very informative. Since they were in the morning it left us ample time to explore ... Read More
Great cruise with a company that made our trip so memorable. Cabin was very comfortable and staff was so helpful and friendly. Our ports and excursions were very informative. Since they were in the morning it left us ample time to explore on our own or just lounge on the deck. Extra excursions were very reasonably priced and enjoyable. Our excursion to 2 wineries and wine tastings was the highlight of our day in Budapest. Most included excursions offer a guide for “gentle walkers” that needed a a somewhat slower pace. I would advise to bring some loose clothes because the food was phenomenal, with included wine or beer at lunch and dinner. Our cruise director Tabia was superb and made sure that everything was perfect. The wait staff in the dining room were friendly and ensured that our meals were to our liking. This was our second Avelon cruise and will not hesitate to take a third with this company. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
About the Avalon river cruise we first learned from the internet. We booked the river cruise from Nuremberg to Luxemburg on the Main river and the Rhine river. The deal included two nights in a five stars hotel in Prague. We left ... Read More
About the Avalon river cruise we first learned from the internet. We booked the river cruise from Nuremberg to Luxemburg on the Main river and the Rhine river. The deal included two nights in a five stars hotel in Prague. We left home with high expectations and immediately in Prague we realized it was really going to be great. We met the cruise manager Tamas who was extremely friendly and helpful. From Prague we were taken by bus to Nuremberg in Germany to board the ship. And here too everything was perfect and the cabin was indeed what we saw in the advertisement. The dinner turned out to be really very good with plenty of good wines to choose from and the food was very decorative and nicely served and we had plenty of food choices. We have nothing but compliments to the organization, the cabin, the maintenance, the excellent food and the way it was served, the friendly staff, the included tours, and the whole cruising area. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
We chose this cruise and cruise line because they were less expensive than others, and had good reviews. I also wanted to see Europe at Christmas time. I was not disappointed. Had a wonderful time. This cruise was so well done, every ... Read More
We chose this cruise and cruise line because they were less expensive than others, and had good reviews. I also wanted to see Europe at Christmas time. I was not disappointed. Had a wonderful time. This cruise was so well done, every excursion, guided tour, and everything in between was exceptional. The staff on the ship were so nice, kind, and very helpful! The food was amazing, so many choices on the menus, but not overwhelming where it was super hard to decide. I loved that the cruise was rather small in size a very intimate atmosphere. The ship was easy to get around, and felt quite cozy no matter where you were. Our cruise director Bart was just a super great guy! So personable, and knowledgeable. Anything we needed he was right there to take care of it. I loved this cruise so much we are already planning our next one. Read Less
Sail Date December 2018
Our cruise down the Danube in December was truly a trip of a lifetime. The entire staff aboard the Avalon Illumination were amazing. We received first class treatment in a very relaxed, friendly and professional environment. The ... Read More
Our cruise down the Danube in December was truly a trip of a lifetime. The entire staff aboard the Avalon Illumination were amazing. We received first class treatment in a very relaxed, friendly and professional environment. The Christmas Markets and all the sites along the way were beautiful. The Illumination was the prettiest boat on the river and was "decked out" for the holidays. The food and wine selections at all meals were wonderful and the lounge/bar was perfect place to unwind and get together with fellow guests after dinner and various times throughout the day. Sabine, our Cruise Director, was very helpful with suggestions and detailed information about how to navigate each stop along the way when we wanted to go out and explore on our own. Avalon is a top notch company and we have recommended this cruise line to all of our friends back home. Thank you, Avalon, for making the beginning of our holiday season so merry and bright! Read Less
Sail Date December 2018
Looked like a great vacation but cut short in Vienna do to low water level. We where to board the ship In Nuremberg but didn't , disappointed. Wanted to see the city. Staff on the ship where friendly and very good at their jobs. ... Read More
Looked like a great vacation but cut short in Vienna do to low water level. We where to board the ship In Nuremberg but didn't , disappointed. Wanted to see the city. Staff on the ship where friendly and very good at their jobs. People on board seemed to be having a good time until we where notified the cruise would not be sailing south of Austria. Most peoples chose to end their trip and return home. We chose to continue our trip. Gusta, our tour director was very patient and helpful in planing our continued trip arrangements. The food was very good, food service and waiter staff was attentive and friendly. Excursions where handle well and the tour guides did a good job. We enjoyed Avalon and think they where very responsible in handling the problem of not being able to sail the entire Danube. Avalon's refund for our disruption in sailing says a lot about your integrity, honesty and professional approach to providing a quality vacation experience. I would give serious consideration to traveling with Avalon again. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
Always wanted to cruise the Danube. River was low so we had to do a bus for the first 3 days, missing the Nuremberg tour, which wasn't a big deal because we arrived there a day early and explored the old city by ourselves. Avalon ... Read More
Always wanted to cruise the Danube. River was low so we had to do a bus for the first 3 days, missing the Nuremberg tour, which wasn't a big deal because we arrived there a day early and explored the old city by ourselves. Avalon made up for it by giving us the Vienna concert complimentary. The ship was great, very comfortable. We really enjoyed the food and the service. The wine tasting excursion in Budapest was disappointing, but that is the only real complaint we had. Avalon seems very well organized and communicative. Very professional. One thing we really like was the intimacy of the cruise. The river cruise ships are understandably small as ships go, with room for about 160 passengers on our ship. That gave us a great opportunity to meet folks and get together with them routinely. We traveled by ourselves, not with friends we already knew, and met some really wonderful people. Loved Regensberg and Passau. Vienna is spectacular, but almost overwhelming in scope. The concert there is a must do, especially if you love classical music. The night lights tour in Budapest is also a must. Truly spectacular. We will definitely do another cruise with Avalon. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
What a fabulous trip! Ship and crew were great. I was disappointed that the top deck was closed for so long as I was planning/hoping to spend most of my time up there. I understand WHY (height of the bridges & locks) but would ... Read More
What a fabulous trip! Ship and crew were great. I was disappointed that the top deck was closed for so long as I was planning/hoping to spend most of my time up there. I understand WHY (height of the bridges & locks) but would suggest starting the cruise in Bamberg maybe? The canal from N'berg to Bamberg was less than spectacular. That would allow for more time in the cities which were all AMAZING! Bamberg, Wurzberg, Miltenberg, Rudeshiem, Bernkastel, Trier, etc....it's hard to pick a favorite! ALL picture-postcard perfect cities. Would have loved to have more time in each. Miltenberg & Bernkastel were probably my personnal favorites. Wish we could have stopped in Koblenz; looked like a neat town from the ship. Rhine river gorge was spectacular and definitely the highlight of the actual time spent sailing/cruising the river. The top deck was a great place to be in the evenings after dinner. The service was good overall, a bit slow at times when clearing the tables but we had a few newbies. Lubo, the server/bartender was the best! Great sense of humor and very fast service. Jana, our waitress most times when we could get to her section, was very good as well and adorable. The food was fabulous! Great choices and variety. I couldn't fathom people ordering cheeseburgers and fries! Americans, geez!!! Chef was awesome with a great personality. I really enjoyed the galley tour. We found it ironic that most of the free/included tours/excursions was as good, if not better, than the paid ones. We enjoyed them all but thought that some of the excursions were over priced. The free visit to the wine cellar was exceptional! We bought numerous bottles which I think is/was the point of offering it free to the entire boat. I was shocked so many people left so soon. The in-cabin TV offerings were good; really liked the GPS map w/ ship's location and front facing camera; more camera options /angles would be cool, too. A few more stations would be nice but we obviously aren't there to watch TV. Miko, the pianist, was talented and knew a wide variety of tunes. The special guest entertainers were fun, too. I really enjoyed the guy who talked about the history, state of & future of the EU, Brexit, etc. Extremely interesting to an American. He was very gracious in answering what were probably dumb questions. Getting on and off the ship was a breeze; very nice to have our giants bags lugged around for us and waiting for us when we got to our rooms! Nothing was broke or damaged!!Teach the airlines how to do it! LOL We hope to do another river cruise! It would be great if they could offer packages airfare and/or all-inclusive options. Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
We chose the Avalon Waterways version of this Danube River Cruise, because it included a 3-night pre-trip extension in Prague (#1 on my wife's bucket list). We stayed in the Prague Hilton for 3 nights, had several included Local ... Read More
We chose the Avalon Waterways version of this Danube River Cruise, because it included a 3-night pre-trip extension in Prague (#1 on my wife's bucket list). We stayed in the Prague Hilton for 3 nights, had several included Local Tours, and thoroughly enjoyed Prague. A barge was stuck in the section of the Danube below Nuremberg, so instead of busing us to Nuremberg to embark on Avalon Vista, they bused us by way of Cesky Krumlov ( a UNESCO World Heritage Site) at their expense. This village was amazing, and probably one of the highlights of the entire trip. Once we embarked on the Vista, the fun began. Each port included a Local Tour, optional tours, great food and beverages aboard the ship, and entertainment each night. The service was outstanding, our fellow passengers were fun, and the Cruise Director was very organized and responsive. We had Avalon handle the airline tickets (one less detail for us to handle) -- I think we got free airport transfers at the start and finish for them doing this. We saw many really neat old buildings (no wonder they call North America the 'new world'), learned a lot about the history of this region, and truly had a great time. I rated everything with this cruise as excellent, including dining, activities, service, cabin, entertainment, staff, etc. There were no children on our cruise, and taking children would probably not be appropriate on a river cruise. We really loved this river cruise, and would go with Avalon Waterways again in a heartbeat. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
I chose Avalon because of their state rooms - wonderful to have the entire room become your balcony. I can’t say enough good about this trip! There was not one single flaw in the entire experience. It was absolutely wonderful and we ... Read More
I chose Avalon because of their state rooms - wonderful to have the entire room become your balcony. I can’t say enough good about this trip! There was not one single flaw in the entire experience. It was absolutely wonderful and we will choose Avalon again! The ship was wonderful, the service fantastic and the food was delicious! I felt pampered the entire week. It was our first river cruise and it was a wonderful experience! We started with 3 days in Prague which we loved and then cruised the Danube river from Nuremberg to Budapest for 7 nights. We got to see a lot of history as well as the beauty of the countryside. I loved the sailing part - nice and slow so you could take in the scenery. It was fun going through all the Locke’s. The ships staff was wonderful - attentive and willing to always make you happy. Cruise director Carolina was the BEST!!! We will definitely do another river cruise with Avalon. Would not even consider another cruise line. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
We have been on multiple ocean cruises and wanted to try something different. This cruise traveled to countries we wanted to visit. Avalon exceeded our expectations. The ship was very comfortable and clean. The personal products used are ... Read More
We have been on multiple ocean cruises and wanted to try something different. This cruise traveled to countries we wanted to visit. Avalon exceeded our expectations. The ship was very comfortable and clean. The personal products used are top of the line. The ports of call were interesting and we appreciated that a city tour was included in our price. Each guide we had was informative and knowledgeable. Perhaps our most favorite part was tasting food, wine and beers from the various different countries. We generally sat in the same spot in the dining room and our server, Laura, was delightful. The cruise director, Gusta, is very efficient. We had no difficulties with any tours we chose as options. We actually can’t wait to go again. In addition, we appreciated that beer and wine was included in our price. We have absolutely no complaints about any part of this experience. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
I chose this cruise because Diana Gabaldon was going to be featured. I’d been interested in a River Cruise but with the added bonus of my favorite author meant I had to go on this trip. It truly was an experience of a lifetime. It ... Read More
I chose this cruise because Diana Gabaldon was going to be featured. I’d been interested in a River Cruise but with the added bonus of my favorite author meant I had to go on this trip. It truly was an experience of a lifetime. It went beyond my expectations. The food was great and the staff friendly and helpful. Historically interesting sites, beautiful scenery and knowledgeable guides really added to the enjoyment. There were plenty of excursion options so while it made choosing one difficult at times, it meant there was something for everyone. The events with Diana Gabaldon were well organized and thoughtfully planned. These were particularly enjoyable for us fans. Diana herself was very gracious and approachable. Sharing a meal with her and her husband was one of the highlights. My husband especially liked the lightning over Vienna but we really can’t credit Avalon for that! Overall, the cruise gave us memories that will last our whole lives. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
Like Avalon lots, my 2nd Avalon trip, (1st was Nov 2016 to Peru, Macchu Picchu & Amazon cruise) our friends 1st time picked this Danube cruise- very satisfying journey! Ship was lovely; crew excellent & genuinely eager to please; ... Read More
Like Avalon lots, my 2nd Avalon trip, (1st was Nov 2016 to Peru, Macchu Picchu & Amazon cruise) our friends 1st time picked this Danube cruise- very satisfying journey! Ship was lovely; crew excellent & genuinely eager to please; food varied & high quality; service was personalized, attentive & accommodating; cabin spacious, well appointed with great bath amenities from L'Occitane! Learned quite a bit never knew before. Well presented info by knowledgeable local guides. Tour Coordinator Gusta was exceptionally good, friendly, highly educated & informative, au courant! My husband's birthday was made very special for him with surprise decorations in cabin & scrumptious chocolate cake ablaze with candles, Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
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