8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2018
Smooth pick-up at Munich airport and transfer to hotel in Nuremburg as we couldn't board until around 5pm. We received a warm welcome and we were delighted with our cabin - Panoramic Balcony Suite - comfortable, plenty of storage ... Read More
Smooth pick-up at Munich airport and transfer to hotel in Nuremburg as we couldn't board until around 5pm. We received a warm welcome and we were delighted with our cabin - Panoramic Balcony Suite - comfortable, plenty of storage spaces - compact but up to the standard of a 4 star hotel The food was excellent - from the great range of breakfast choices through to the 4 course dinner menus. Always plenty of choices and found the "Chef's Favourites" for dinner was usually a good choice. Whether you wanted a continental style breakfast, or hot breakfast, there was a great deal of choice and self-service was easy. Lunch had a variety of choices which changed every day, usually including speciality dishes from the region. Best to do a complete circuit of the lunch table first to see all the offerings, before deciding what to choose. The four course dinners always had plenty of choices and the seating of 2, 4 or 6 meant that you could choose how many to sit with and offered a great opportunity to meet other people and strike up new friendships. The shore excursions were always well organised and the local guides and the "Quiet Voice" units meant that you could really see and understand all the interesting parts of the tours. Also a good balance between guided tours and free-time meant that you can also explore on your own. The service was excellent, everybody, including the Cruise Director (Wes), Head Chef, waiters, bar staff, cabin stewards were polite, helpful and professional. I liked the well-organised aspect of the cruise - at all times, we could relax and enjoy the cruise as all the staff worked hard to keep everything running smoothly and ensuring that you had an enjoyable time. This was our first river cruise and we will definitely be booking again with Emerald Waterways (just can't decide where to go next!) Read Less
19 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2017
I will begin this by saying, this trip was booked for the sole purpose of visiting the Christmas Markets. My mother had been to Germany several times, and I was anxious to see the wonderful sights she had seen while visiting the Christmas ... Read More
I will begin this by saying, this trip was booked for the sole purpose of visiting the Christmas Markets. My mother had been to Germany several times, and I was anxious to see the wonderful sights she had seen while visiting the Christmas Markets previously. We have traveled on several cruises together through the years, but always pn ocean liners. We researched the trip. We researched the destinations. We definitely did our homework. That being said, I will refer to a particular evening when our Cruise Director was going over the following day's itinerary. I heard a passenger lament that we were going to "Another Christmas Market" with a groan and eyeroll as she said it. I turned to my mother and said, "How could she be upset about that? This was advertised as a Christmas Market Cruise!" I heard many of these rumblings throughout the trip. I was somewhat offended, because I will cherish the trip, the memories and the people we met for the rest of my life. I had an awesome trip, so I found it a little hard to stomach the ones that were saying such rude things. I found the ship and crew warm and welcoming. The staff bent over backward to make us feel at home. Many of the crew members filled multiple roles. They did so with efficiency and kindness. As I said previously, we had been on several cruises. They were ocean cruises. This was the first river cruise I'd been on. I knew that the grandeur of a ocean cruise ship would not be found on a river cruise. I knew there would be no casino, no nightclub, no nightly shows. I knew there would be no midnight buffets with ice sculptures. I don't care about those things. We booked this trip to add to a lifetime of memories that my mom and I have been making together. We were not disappointed. I found the ship to provide for every necessity we had, and provide well. The ship was well kept, it was lovely and when I compared it to other ships we saw cruising the Rhine I was pleasantly pleased that our ship was amongst the nicest. Dining. I heard quite a few people complaining about the fare. I heard some rather needless and unkind things being said. So here is my assessment of the food and dining experience. I found the food to be good, plentiful and very tailored to the passenger pool. If we were to take a walking trip around the meal bar you would find: fresh cheeses, sliced meats, salad options, fruits, bread, desserts, hot and cold cereals, soups, rice, fish, sandwiches, hot veggies, meat choices, usually a pasta choice, omelettes to order at breakfast and the list goes on. If you want a lighter fare you can visit the lounge and enjoy a pancake, french toast, soup, pasta or sandwich at breakfast or lunch. At dinner the menu also plentiful. Typically there were 2 choices of appetizer, a soup, a featured item as main course and a dessert. If you did not care of the featured main course there was a choice of chicken, steak, fish or Ceasar Salad every night, as well. No, you will not find the vast array of food you'd find on an ocean cruise. That being said, if you find fault in the food on this cruise then I would say you should have booked a Cuisine Cruise instead. I found the food to be delicious, and I thought the Chef was wonderful. Entertainment and Activities were not a huge priority to us. We did not book this cruise to be entertained and party. We were on this trip to enjoy time spent with each other and any new friends we would meet, and we did meet some wonderful people. We thoroughly enjoyed the glassblower, the cookie making, the musical entertainment, the movie nights, disco night and trivia. They were wonderfully presented and fun to attend. Service. The ENTIRE staff bent over backwards to help us. If I were going to say anything on the downside, it would be that my mother and I are not alcohol drinkers. I found it a bit difficult at first to get a soft drink. The wait staff have to go to a different location to get a soft drink so it throws off their service rhythm. Which I totally understand. Dining on a smaller scale ship is like a well thought out ballet. Everything has it's place because of limited space. They are super organized and efficient. I felt I was inconveniencing them to ask for a soft drink. They are pronto with the alcohol, but soft drinks not so much. I worked it out by mid cruise, I began ordering my soft drinks two at a time so that I wouldn't have to ask for a refill later in the meal. Ironically, the majority of the ladies we sat with began doing the same so we became known as the soda drinkers. We also made sure to sit in the areas of the dining room that we knew the waiters were a bit more flexible. From the Captain on down to the room stewards, everyone was wonderful. Ports, docking and excursions. Ports were wonderful. Transportation from the ship to our destinations was quick and efficient. I enjoyed the all the places we visited. I absolutely LOVED Rothenberg, which in our package was an excursion. It was my absolute favorite. If we had thought it through more, we would have gotten an earlier flight to Nuremberg and visited the Market there before boarding the ship. We enjoyed a diverse choice of stops with the commonality of the Christmas Markets, which we loved. If I was going to find a downside, I would have to say the arrival times to the Market locations. I had anticipated this experience for so long. After researching the destinations and seeing pictures of the marketplaces at each, I had a very clear vision in my head. I was mildly disappointed that the majority of the markets we visited weren't even open when we arrived, because we arrived in the mornings. I was excited to experience the markets in the evening when they were lit up to get the full effect of Christmas time festivities. I was grateful to get to see them, but would have loved to see them all at night. I understand we were at the mercy of our port time and sail schedule, but that would be the only thing I would say was disappointing. Overall, this was the trip of a lifetime and I enjoyed it thoroughly. I would do it again and again, and I would sail with Emerald again to do it. It was a great way to "sample" some locations to possibly revisit so that I can spend more time in the places that truly stood out to me. In an nutshell: I loved the entire trip. What I didn't love was the bashing being done by some of the other passengers. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2017
We wanted a special adventure for our 50th Anniversary. We thoroughly enjoyed the fact that everything was provided, all the details were pre-arranged and we were able to relax and enjoy. The on-shore tours and local guides were ... Read More
We wanted a special adventure for our 50th Anniversary. We thoroughly enjoyed the fact that everything was provided, all the details were pre-arranged and we were able to relax and enjoy. The on-shore tours and local guides were excellent, on-board experience was wonderful, and the cities we visited were great. The pre-trip in Prague was a wonderful introduction for our trip. We enjoyed the walking opportunities in each location and participated in each of the provided on-shore tours. We also enjoyed several of the optional excursions as well as the opportunities to have some free time to explore on our own. The history, foods, culture, architecture and people were all very great experiences. The staff on-board went above and beyond to provide for us and were present when needed, but also unobtrusive and efficient. This has provided great value for the cost of our cruise. We highly recommend this cruise and would love to have another opportunity some day. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2017
Every single member of the crew was outstandingly good at their job. You could not find a friendlier, more efficient group of widely international people anywhere, The ship, itself, was well designed in every respect. Given the size ... Read More
Every single member of the crew was outstandingly good at their job. You could not find a friendlier, more efficient group of widely international people anywhere, The ship, itself, was well designed in every respect. Given the size limitations of a Danube river cruise, nothing could have been better. The lounge and restaurant on board were very well run, both in the range of food and the immaculate service of the staff. The whole atmosphere was very amenable at ll times. The off-board excursions were run with great precision, even down to the special guides for the slower, more disabled passengers when walking around in groups. Shuttlebuses in the larger cities were well organised and very useful. Tours around the three big cities were very informative but the outstanding trip of the week was in Slovakia to visit a real family in their home environment and experience their friendly hospitality. Brilliant at his job was Balazs Varga, who was on top of all planning and made everything run smoothly. We cannot praise the whole organisation enough for providing one of the most enjoyable holidays you could possibly have anywhere in the world.. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2017
Wonderful program from beginning to end. Amber is a beautiful ship. Fine dining and wonderful port stops. Excellent crew. Everything run to perfection. A good mix of early starts and late starts for tours. But, never enough time to ... Read More
Wonderful program from beginning to end. Amber is a beautiful ship. Fine dining and wonderful port stops. Excellent crew. Everything run to perfection. A good mix of early starts and late starts for tours. But, never enough time to see all that Eastern Europe has to offer. If ending in Budapest, add at least one night to your stay and explore this wonderful city. Highly recommend Scenic and this itinerary. A few notes: Scenic hotel was Prague Marriott (wonderful). Breakfast only for Prague extension. One city walking tour included for Prague, otherwise on own but Prague is an easy, walkable city to explore. Buses left hotel for port between 12:30 and 1:00 PM, one bathroom stop mid way. All buses for entire trip had small toilets - none had Wi-Fi. Rooms 301 and 302 on Amber and Jade have obstructed views (smaller balcony windows). There is a breakfast menu but you have to ask for it, otherwise buffet. Coffee/Hot Chocolate machines in bar, cookies set out at times. Also a glass encased snack/treat area directly at the bar. Type C electric adaptors needed for US electronics. A bus follows the bikers if any decide not to finish the ride from Melk to Durnstein. Bottles of water available at start of each tour. Amber docks far away from Marriott Budapest, so don't plan on walking from the ship to the hotel at the conclusion of the cruise. If booking a Budapest extension with Scenic, they provide bus transfer to the Marriott. We booked the Marriott on our own and the Travel Director added us to the bus transfer, after we asked. All required to be out of ship cabins by 8:45 AM. Could remain in bar area until departure. Read Less
Sail Date: May 2017
We chose this because of my sister and I had never experienced the Danube and we stopped in Vienna and Budapest. The river cruise was much better than we anticipated. All of the crew were just wonderful. Deb was always on top of ... Read More
We chose this because of my sister and I had never experienced the Danube and we stopped in Vienna and Budapest. The river cruise was much better than we anticipated. All of the crew were just wonderful. Deb was always on top of everything and she helped in so many ways. My sister and I both loved Deb. The cabin was beautiful and always kept clean and tidy by the cabin attendant. The entertainment and piano was spectacular. Vienna was undoubtably more than we expected. The extra special excursion to the Vienna Opera and Vienna City Orchestra was something we will never forget. I never wanted the performance to end! We had a wonderful vacation and one will never forget. This was our second Viking River Cruise. The first cruise was on the Rhine and was also memorable but with a different itinerary. Thank you Viking and a special thank you to the host, Debra Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2016
We had 4 couples travel together we a pre cruise in Prague. This was my 5th Viking cruise and knew what to expect. From the pickup at the Prague airport to the drop off at the Frankfurt airport, everything went smooth and no issues. The ... Read More
We had 4 couples travel together we a pre cruise in Prague. This was my 5th Viking cruise and knew what to expect. From the pickup at the Prague airport to the drop off at the Frankfurt airport, everything went smooth and no issues. The Prague Hilton where Viking had us stay is in the outskirts of Old Town but we didn't mind because we enjoyed walking around Prague every day. We opted for the Terazin day trip which was well worth the extra money, the guide was very knowledgeable and we had lunch in an exceptional Czech micro brewery. We were bused from Prague to Nuremberg and made it with time to unpack, have a drink and enjoy dinner. The following morning we had a bus trip around Nuremberg, saw the Zeppelin field, courthouse and the Castle on the hill. There was plenty of time for lunch, Christmas Market shopping and get a bus back to the ship in the afternoon. Once again we had a very knowledgeable guide, I think Viking had outstanding ones on this trip, at each stop they were funny, knowledgeable and communicated well. The next day was Bamburg, a short bus ride to town, a very witty and funny guide, who was a student took us around, the boat sailed at 1:15 PM so it gave us some time to shop around and sample the smokey dark beer that only Bamburg offers. I wish we had another hour or two here. The next day was filled with plenty of activities, first stop was Wurzburg Residenz, a walking tour with another great guide, then a bus trip to Rothenburg, a brief tour then 3 hours to spend exploring this picturesque town, a bus trip back to the ship, then a Taste of Germany buffet with local beer and wine. This dinner is outstanding and we all enjoyed it. The next day we cruised all morning, had a glass blowing demonstration, and arrived in Wertheim at 2:00 PM.The glass blower is very interesting, tells good stories and it is not to be missed.There is a small train that picks you up and drives you into the small town, we opted out of the train and guide, walked in ourselves, and hiked up to the castle on the hill.This is not to be missed, it is 2 euros to get in and you are on your own, plenty to explore up there. After our climb , we had beers in town and walked back to the ship. We cruise most of the night and were supposed to arrive in Frankfurt at 10 AM, there was heavy traffic on the river. At 11:00 AM we departed the boat and were bused to Heidelberg, you could have stayed on and gone to Frankfurt. This was my 3rd time to Heidelberg so when we arrived at the castle, we walked down the steps to downtown, did some shopping and had lunch too We were bused back to the boat in Frankfurt, had dinner on the ship and walked 3 blocks to the Christmas Market and explored Frankfurt. Our luggage had to be out the next day at 5 AM, with 6:15 AM bus ride to the airport. Viking stepped it up with the guides in each town, all were outstanding, spoke well and had great personalities. The wine selection was different each night, all were very good, and the food was very good to excellent. Out of 8 of us, 2 with dietary restrictions, we did not complain once or have a bad meal. The Maitre De on the boat came around to our 2 travelers at breakfast every morning, went over the lunch and dinner selection and made sure they were able to get what they wanted, both were gluten free and one was dairy free. There was a piano player-singer every day named Sylvia, she had a beautiful voice and played the piano very well. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2016
We couldnt fault our river cruise, everything was timed beautifully from being picked up at Munich airport to the transfer from hotel to Budapest airport. The food was excellent, bedrooms clean with a superb panoramic view from our cabin, ... Read More
We couldnt fault our river cruise, everything was timed beautifully from being picked up at Munich airport to the transfer from hotel to Budapest airport. The food was excellent, bedrooms clean with a superb panoramic view from our cabin, the ship very clean throughout and the crew were exceptional For us the river cruise is a much much better experience than a cruise ship. The trips were well thought out and planned even down to a special guide for the less abled. There was plenty of choice at meal times. Breakfast and Lunch being buffet with plenty of choice and dinner normally waiter service which consisted of five courses with a choice to each course. The crew were very friendly, friendly and always had a smile on their faces. We were in a cabin with a panoramic window which was ideal for the October weather. The window could be opened to half way down. I would opt for that sort of cabin again for our next river cruise Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2016
This was our 2nd Emerald cruise, this time it was The Danube cruise from Nuremberg to Budapest. We arrived at Munich airport to a well organised transfer to the ship. Slight delay boarding so we were well looked after with refreshments ... Read More
This was our 2nd Emerald cruise, this time it was The Danube cruise from Nuremberg to Budapest. We arrived at Munich airport to a well organised transfer to the ship. Slight delay boarding so we were well looked after with refreshments at a local hotel. The cabins on board are excellent, with a high comfort factor, very nicely appointed with large flat screen TV, hairdryer, robes. We were on a lower deck, with no balcony. It was fine, the window allowed river views so we could see the weather conditions! No engine noise, just some shuddering when docking. The lounge bar is very comfortable, although a personal preference would be for the furnishings off its sister ship. The sofas are very deep, not the best for short people and those with mobility problems. Staff are superb, regardless of department. Some are absolutely outstanding. The cruise director was excellent, informative & helpful. The restaurant, wow, what can I say, except I'm now dieting! The cuisine was amazing, great choice at all mealtimes, whether it be a light bight in the lounge or a 5 course Gala dinner. No complaints, only compliments to the chef, his team and restaurant staff. Always delicious wines to compliment both lunch & dinner. The included excursions were well organised, informative and enjoyable. However there were occasions when a member of our party could not participate due to mobility problems. This was usually due to being docked alongside other vessels and having to cross over boats. If it meant crossing from the sun terrace onto another boat, then there is no elevator to the top deck. Also other boats may not have elevators at all. We've already booked our next river cruise with Emerald, exceptional holidays. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2016
This was our first river cruise. I must say I am please we choose Scenic. I gave it only 4 stars because of the lack of communication between Scenic prior to sailing. Other than that the ship is beautiful and well laid out. What they can ... Read More
This was our first river cruise. I must say I am please we choose Scenic. I gave it only 4 stars because of the lack of communication between Scenic prior to sailing. Other than that the ship is beautiful and well laid out. What they can do with a small space was wonderful. The food was way better than I ever expected including the buffet which I hate buffets. Everyone herding at one time to get there plate full. This seemed to work quiet well and great choices. The cruise director was a very hard working. Wanted everyone happy even if they choose to do nothing or go on every side trip and watch every performance. Our butter was the best. Now I must say my husband was a bit disappointed as far as all inclusive. He likes Royal Crown whiskey in the evening so upon getting to our room as stock was told we could not have it in our room but could go to the bar area. Now my husband has mobility problems and guess who was going to the bar to return with his glass of Royal Crown. Now the other minor problem was on booking we could not upgrade our room on the land package even if we were willing to pay more??? Perhaps they all have little things that could make them first class. The Danube is beautiful and a great choice. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2016
We chose this cruise because we wanted to do a Rhine cruise and the dates coincided with our Ruby wedding anniversary and our friends 60th Birhtday ( We are from The UK our friends from Australia ) We arrived at the ship in Nuremburg to a ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we wanted to do a Rhine cruise and the dates coincided with our Ruby wedding anniversary and our friends 60th Birhtday ( We are from The UK our friends from Australia ) We arrived at the ship in Nuremburg to a warm welcome and glass of champagne. Most passengers had already boarded at Budapest a week earlier and so we were one of only six couples to board. We were given a welcome briefing which was brief, practical and on the whole useful. Our cabin was comfortable and reasonably spacious - the innovative balcony windows are a great idea. The bed was very comfortable as were the pillows. The cabin staff were helpful and nothing was too much trouble - the same can be said for all the staff aboard the ship. I personally found the meals to be disappointing as I a a Vegetarian and found there was very limited chice. Lunchtime was particularly disappointing - often of the two soups available one was rarely vegetarian and if it was it was often a cold soup ( yuk ! ) The lunchtime Bar- B-Q was also a disappointment - vegetarian options were lettuce, mini corn on the cob and jacket potatoes. There was a wide selection of meat and fish dishes but where were the vegetable kebabs, vegetarian sausages etc ? On another occasion there was a meat lasagna - wherre was the vegetable lasagna ...? ! ! Evening meals offered only one vegetarian option per course - I guess you coud call that adaquate but how many non vegetarian passengers would settle for ony one option per course ? Acceptable on a basic cruise but not in my opnion on a cruise advertised as five star. ( And yes we have been on 5 star cruises ! ) The bar and dining room staff work very hard ( Bar staff double up as waiters in the dining room in the evenings ) But due to the fact that everyone is expected in the dining room at the same time; it can be a long wait before you are served your meal and an even longer wait for wine ( There is no wine waiter ) We often had to ask busy staff for wine and also to be topped up. There is a longe with a bar in which some entertainment is provided most nights. The lounge is very crowded and it was often difficult to find a seat. This however was not the main problem. On our first evening we noticed a great many passengers were coughing and anticipated the worst. Unfortunatly it was not just a cought but a flu like virus and sadly both ourselves and one of our friends caught the virus. Not surprising given the close proximity of passengers in the lounge. I would estimate that at least 80% of passengers were take ill. In fairness to Scenic it was not thier fault that someone brought the virus aboard the ship and there is an emphasis on using the hand gel dispensers located at the entrance to public areas and at the entrance of the ship. But sadly our experience was spoilt and our wedding anniversary celebrations non existant. The same can be said of our friends 60th Birthday celebrations. On balance I would say the cruise was enjoyable - there are some good excursions, the staff are excellent and the cabins very comfortable. But if you are a Vegetarian think again about booking and don't book a river cruise end of September onwards - the possibility of catching a virus would be very high. It only needs one person to bring a virus aboard the ship and sadly it can spoil the entire experience. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2016
This experience was ok, not great, not bad. The highlights were the included orientation tours at each stop, and the great, friendly and efficient crew. Everyone on the ship tried hard to please, but it is hard to say it was an ... Read More
This experience was ok, not great, not bad. The highlights were the included orientation tours at each stop, and the great, friendly and efficient crew. Everyone on the ship tried hard to please, but it is hard to say it was an outstanding experience, relative to the price. Port stops were often rushed and inconvenient. Although this was indicated as a Danube River Cruise, in fact at the start of the journey, for more then a day we were cruising along a not very pretty canal. Yes the locks are interesting, but not beautiful, except in a mechanical, scientific way. The chef, the galley crew and the servers all worked hard to serve meals. It is not their fault, but the menu was rather boring, staid and not particularly tasty. Dessert choices were extremely limited, usually one pastry, one ice cream and one fruit dessert at dinner. Dinner service included beverages, and although wine flowed freely, it wasn't always good. The ship was tastefully decorated, but I found the seating in public spaces uncomfortable and too low to the ground. Often at night the longe area seemed very chilly. Last year I took a Uniworld River cruise and thought it was far superior. Maybe it was the itinerary, maybe the company policies, but dollar for dollar it was a far better experience. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2016
Our travel agent recommended Uniworld Boutique River Cruises to us as a way to travel through Europe enjoying an all inclusive vacation package. We were not disappointed. Our room on the ship was well appointed, cozy, clean and quite. The ... Read More
Our travel agent recommended Uniworld Boutique River Cruises to us as a way to travel through Europe enjoying an all inclusive vacation package. We were not disappointed. Our room on the ship was well appointed, cozy, clean and quite. The meals in the restaurant were all outstanding. We enjoyed the fact that there were only 120 passangers making life on board the ship very easy and fun. It seemed much easier to make new friends on this small ship versus a large ocean liner. we enjoyed docking in the middle of towns and cities along the Danube as we had very short walks to central shopping and historic sites. We enjoyed a wide variety of excursions conducted by enthusiastic local guides. The crew was always friendly and focused on making the cruise as special as possible. This was our very first river cruise and given our very positive experience, we plan on doing it again. Nice job Uniworld! Read Less
Sail Date: September 2016
The cruise was lovely. The ports were of great interest and the natural beauty of the Danube was amazing. We flew in to Prague and spent 2 nights there. It was my favorite city. The music, historic sites and the food were very good. ... Read More
The cruise was lovely. The ports were of great interest and the natural beauty of the Danube was amazing. We flew in to Prague and spent 2 nights there. It was my favorite city. The music, historic sites and the food were very good. Don't miss the concerts at the Mirror Chapel. The rooftop restaurant at the Prince U Hotel offered a view of the city and the famous clock. It is a 4 hour bus trip from Prague to Nuremberg, the embarkation city. Nuremberg sightseeing was OK. All of the other ports on the Delightful Danube cruise were exceptional. The River Princess is an older ship that is well maintained. The cabins are small. We had the least expensive cabin and I would do that again. We didn't feel the extra expense was worth it since you literally only sleep and shower in there. One of the advantages of Uniworld tours is everything is included: all alcoholic beverages, excursions and gratuities. The food very good with a nice variety of fish, chicken, pasta and beef all themed on the port we were in. The wines served were also from the various countries we were in. The Austrian red was very good. The staff in the restaurants and the bar were friendly and accommodating. They were the best in my cruising experience. The excursions were with well informed guides who gave insight into the national character and historic sights. We did a bike tour along the Danube that was beautiful and not too strenuous. The Cruise Director was ever present to help when needed and took friends to the hospital when they had a URI. This cruise was a great was to see the historic gems of Prague, Vienna, Budapest . Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2016
We recently sailed the Danube River on the Scenic Ruby from Nuremberg to Budapest. This was our first river cruise. My expectations were high and I have to say Scenic exceeded them. Our cruise director was Adrian. He was very organized and ... Read More
We recently sailed the Danube River on the Scenic Ruby from Nuremberg to Budapest. This was our first river cruise. My expectations were high and I have to say Scenic exceeded them. Our cruise director was Adrian. He was very organized and an excellent communicator. Our butler was Pratish. He was very friendly and eager to please. The entire staff was friendly and hard working. They all seemed to enjoy their jobs. Scenic offered at least 2 excursions each day and an additional one at night a few nights. You can also do self-guided tours or just hang out on the boat if you like. They have electric assist bicycles that we used several times including a 22 mile excursion along the Danube. The food was excellent with many choices every day. Scenic claims to be all inclusive and I found that to be true. We went on any excursion we wanted, ate whatever we wanted and had unlimited drinks day and night at no additional charge. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2016
This was our second river cruise with scenic and we cannot recommend Scenic enough....from the very start of the process - booking through to arriving home - the whole experience was absolutely fantastic. We sailed from Nuremberg up the ... Read More
This was our second river cruise with scenic and we cannot recommend Scenic enough....from the very start of the process - booking through to arriving home - the whole experience was absolutely fantastic. We sailed from Nuremberg up the river Main and Rhine finishing at Amsterdam. The highlight of the trip was the wonderful journey through the Rhine Gorge with the sun shining sipping a cocktail - just perfect. Another enjoyable time was spent at the Oftoberfest - 3 course lunch and plenty of free beer and wine. Also a great evening was had at Marksburg Castle enjoying a medieval banquet with authentic entertainment. Scenic's organisation was superb - no detail was fight ten. The Scenic Crystal was exceptional, clean and contemporary. It's food was excellent, top notch inclusive drinks included, plus all the magnificent trips and events were included too. Our tip would be to book as early as you can and get the extras that are on offer! What more can I say...recommend 100% Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2016
We have done plenty of ocean cruises - this was our 1st river cruise. Wow! We were surprised and impressed. Lovely thoughtful cabin, huge walk in shower and we loved the greenhouse-style balcony that expands room space and can be enjoyed ... Read More
We have done plenty of ocean cruises - this was our 1st river cruise. Wow! We were surprised and impressed. Lovely thoughtful cabin, huge walk in shower and we loved the greenhouse-style balcony that expands room space and can be enjoyed in poor or nice weather (windows drop down). The gym and beauty salon were smal but enough. Food was simply terrific and consistently so: the evening specialty dining space (all passengers had one reservation) was a fun and elegant Italian style meal. There were so many extras that the truly all inclusive Scenic format facilitates. Crew went beyond expectations all the time for passengers and Cruise Director Richard Grey was exceptional at his job. The fully included excursions were nicely orchestrated with the highlight being the fine evening orchestra performance with ballet and opera staged just for us in a gorgeous Vienna venue. Well done Scenic! We will be back for more. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2016
This was my first experience on any type of cruise ship. I wanted to see the cities along the Danube this cruise included on the route. Viking created a wonderful experience from the time spent in Prague until it ended in Budapest! There ... Read More
This was my first experience on any type of cruise ship. I wanted to see the cities along the Danube this cruise included on the route. Viking created a wonderful experience from the time spent in Prague until it ended in Budapest! There were Viking staff along every leg of this trip to help make the experience very memorable. From the time we got off the plane in Prague til we got to security at the Budapest airport the entire staff on this ship was fabulous, welcoming and knowledgable about the ship and areas we were visiting! The wait staff was very attentive to the people at their tables especially when one sat in the same waiters area for the whole trip. Housekeeping paid attention to every little detail. The tours of the cities we stopped in were great and very well organized. The guides were locals, knew their hometowns very well and could impart a lot of information, useful and fun facts about each of the towns and cities we stopped in along the route. The customer service on the Egil and the company of Viking were unparalleled! Read Less
Sail Date: August 2016
We enjoyed the casual, yet very attentive, atmosphere aboard the Viking Atla. We felt we were getting great value for our money in that a sightseeing tour was included each day, plus beer and wine were included with lunch and dinner. ... Read More
We enjoyed the casual, yet very attentive, atmosphere aboard the Viking Atla. We felt we were getting great value for our money in that a sightseeing tour was included each day, plus beer and wine were included with lunch and dinner. Water, coffee, tea and hot chocolate were also available at all hours. The staff & crew were extremely pleasant to deal with and took care of our every need. We would have liked a few more informational talks while on board, especially about local history. The meals showcased local specialties, but could have been a little more varied. We loved the casual atmosphere in the dining room; it made it very easy to interact with the other guests aboard. We took advantage of the optional tours, which included the WWII History Tour in Nuremberg and a very special guided tour through the Vienna Fine Arts Museum. We did a Viking River Cruise (Rhine Getaway) in 2013 and were curious if this cruise would match our previous experience. It did, and we can't decide which was better. We had another outstanding experience and have already booked a Viking Ocean Cruise (Mediterranean Odyssey) for March of 2018. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2016
We went to a presentation by the company after reading their literature. They appeared to offer a very good package with no costs outside of the quoted price. The cruise fulfilled all our expectations, with modern ships, well staffed and ... Read More
We went to a presentation by the company after reading their literature. They appeared to offer a very good package with no costs outside of the quoted price. The cruise fulfilled all our expectations, with modern ships, well staffed and well maintained. The ship was immaculately clean, for example our bedding was changed daily. The staff were extremely friendly and helpful. My one concern before joining the cruise was that with 180 passengers there would be little personal space, this was not the case. Our cabin was larger than that advertised by some other cruise lines with adequate storage space. There was a wide choice of food, which was also plentiful and of good quality. There was a range of entertainments available each evening. The included excursions were well organised with knowledgeable guides. The arrangements for joining and leaving the cruise were very efficiently organised with all luggage handling by the crew. There is no doubt that for a river cruise in the future we would not hesitate to book wth Emerald Waterways. Read Less
16 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2016
This cruise went from Nuremburg through Austria to Budapest in Hungary. The ship itself was clean and well appointed as was our room with a balcony. The crew was helpful and very nice. Food was good. The lounge was nice but could ... Read More
This cruise went from Nuremburg through Austria to Budapest in Hungary. The ship itself was clean and well appointed as was our room with a balcony. The crew was helpful and very nice. Food was good. The lounge was nice but could probably have used at least one more waiter. For three days our boat was off schedule so that it could go into dry dock for repair. We were completely off the boat for the day that it was in dry dock. We spent hours being bused to places that the ship should have docked in. Communication for these changes were not well done. The first two nights, we were docked looking at sand and gravel pits. Two nights and one day we were docked right next to other Viking ships so that we could all go through to shore through each boat. This meant that, if we would have wanted to sit on our balcony or open our curtain, we would have been directly looking into the stateroom of another ship. Balcony was truly a waste of money. This same scenario happened last year on Viking to an acquaintance of mine. This tells me that it isn't all that unusual. We were not offered anything for trouble. The only exception to that was the day of the boat being in dry dock, we were told that we could catch the bus and go back to the ship. After 1 ½ hours on the bus, we waited (no bathroom) 45 minutes for the ship to come. After this, the Captain offered us one free drink in the bar! Read Less
Sail Date: July 2016
We had a group of about 50 people lead by our Travel agent. The staff on the cruise ship was very, very friendly and helpful. Food was excellent, just the right portions. If you wanted more they were very happy to accommodate you. ... Read More
We had a group of about 50 people lead by our Travel agent. The staff on the cruise ship was very, very friendly and helpful. Food was excellent, just the right portions. If you wanted more they were very happy to accommodate you. Rooms were clean and comfortable. Everyone was always smiling. Shore excursions were very interesting and easy to do. Great guides and if there was a chance of rain, they had umbrellas for you as you left the ship and a treat when you came back on board. I have been on much bigger ships and I liked the size of the ship Jarl. I had previously been on cruises to the Caribbean on a different line. I liked the fact that there were not so many floors as the bigger ships. I so enjoyed having lunch out on the deck, enjoying the beautiful scenery with a glass of wine. I would love to do another Viking cruise. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2016
The ship is accurately represented in their brochures, very beautiful. We had a balcony room on the middle level. I would rate everything from service to quality as excellent. The staff made a point to get to know you. We chose to purchase ... Read More
The ship is accurately represented in their brochures, very beautiful. We had a balcony room on the middle level. I would rate everything from service to quality as excellent. The staff made a point to get to know you. We chose to purchase the spirit package and after the first day the staff knew us and our beverage preferences. The excursions were excellent. Viking offered special excursions for those who were a bit less active or mobile than others, so I recommended they offer something a bit more challenging for those of us who want more activity. For example, sometimes we spent time waiting for slower people to catch up to the group (which wasn't all bad because I would use the time to further explore the destination). There were just a few times I would have liked to hike up to a castle, but the whole group wasn't up to it. My husband and I are already planning another Viking cruise, but next time I'm considering saving some money and not getting a balcony because we spent very little time on our balcony and when we were docked we were often either next to a brick wall, or next to another ship (looking directly into their room). The ship offers plenty of outdoor space for those who don't have a balcony so I want to use the money saved to do additional excursions. I like the fact that Viking offered a free daily excursion in each port, but we also enjoyed sometimes doing the extra's. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2016
The ship was sparkling clean and recently launched. Our cabin was small but certainly adequate with the balcony. The food varied from good to fair, mostly better than worse. There is a limited choice of entrees but most of the time one ... Read More
The ship was sparkling clean and recently launched. Our cabin was small but certainly adequate with the balcony. The food varied from good to fair, mostly better than worse. There is a limited choice of entrees but most of the time one could find something appealing. The entertainment and activities were the high point of the cruise. The tours, both daily and optiona,l were mostly outstanding. Tour guides were almost without exception wonderful. I would say that avoiding the optional tours which require long bus rides, particularly the first day, is a good idea. It would be difficult to pick out the best of the optional tours as most of them were outstanding. The service was outstanding. The service givers were mostly Eastern European and extremely pleasant, friendly and efficient. We enjoyed getting to know several of the meal servers. I will say I wasn't happy with the first day. We arrived in Nueremberg to find an airport full of people waiting with Viking representatives. We waited probably another 45 minutes and were led to the buses. The rumor was that we were going to briefly stay at a hotel before we went to the ship. It turns out we stopped at a hotel to pickup other passengers and drove more than 2 hours to where the ship was tied up, due to high water. We were led onto the ship but our baggage was piled up probably 80-90 yards from the ship and it stayed there while we checked in. Then very, very slowly with 2-3 employees and one cart, the bags were brought to the ship. We waited and waited. By the time mine arrived it was somewhat part the start of dinner time. No time to change after nearly 24 hours on the plane. Most of this was really no one's fault,given the high water, although I think the communication was very poor at the beginning and why not pile the luggage right by the ship initially where it would be easily and quickly accessible. As I mentioned above there was some variation in the quality of the food. I would also say unless you intend on doing some substantial drinking the wine and beer served with the meal was fine without the premium alcohol package. The quality of the wine and beer was OK but not great, for someone who enjoys fine wine or premium beer it might be an issue. We bought a drinks, here and there, which ended up costing us way, way less than the cost of the package which was fine for us as we aren't energetic drinkers. Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2016
We did a Danube cruise on the Scenic Pearl from Nuremberg to Budapest from 20th to 27th June 16. We were in a Junior Suite. The cost including Business Class fares was £7500 for the two of us. High water levels on the Danube. We ... Read More
We did a Danube cruise on the Scenic Pearl from Nuremberg to Budapest from 20th to 27th June 16. We were in a Junior Suite. The cost including Business Class fares was £7500 for the two of us. High water levels on the Danube. We were notified before we left that the boat could not make it to Nuremberg because of the high water levels. We were told that we would be bussed to near Passau - about 2.5hrs. As we had gone out early for a weekend in Nuremberg this was no real issue. But for the others on the trip it was as they this meant they either had to miss Nuremberg or face a c 6hr/there and back bus trip. But the more serious issue was whether we would be stuck in Passau for the whole week. A Viking boat had tried to 'escape' only to hit the bridge and had to 'Abandon Ship'. Clearly not advisable! Eventually, they were able to make the ship as low as possible by removing sun shades all the furniture and railings on the sundeck and we made it under the bridge with inches to spare. I can't really criticise Scenic for any of this. But, as ever, communications were in short supply. They did keep us safe. Note this an not uncommon issue with river cruising that must be taken into account. Suite We had a Junior suite. But it was still quite 'compact'. About what you would expect from a 'Regular' suite on a sea cruise. I don't think we would have wanted anything smaller. Beds comfortable. Clean. Well equipped. Just as an aside, a number of cabins two floors below us flooded when a valve blew. They had 3 inches of water in their cabins and, as the boat was full, they were rather stuck. I think it would have ruined our holiday if it had happened to us. I understand the cabins had not dried out as the cruise ended and new occupants arrived. Food The food was a great disappointment. Breakfasts were fine. Buffet lunches missed all the stuff we had been expecting like a 'carving joint of the day', prawns, crab claws etc. Dinners were even more disappointing. We had no 'WOW' meals. Fish was universally overcooked as were the veg. If you want fine dining, Scenic is not for you. Food much better on UniWorld and it bears no comparison to what you would get on Regent or Silver Seas. The Crystal Dining room is more like a canteen. The tables are very close together with inches between the tables for four. The noise level is high and on hot days the air con couldn't cope. Service Generally Eastern European crew. We had 'issues' with our butler who had a real 'attitude' problem. But the rest were great - friendly and efficient. They probably need more staff as drinks service was slow and limited outside the main lounge. There is only one bar which was closed during an exhibition of local dancing. Excursions Generally very good. The perennial problems of guides wanting to fill every moment of a 90min coach trip with talk,talk,talk. But this is not exclusive to Scenic. Best trip was to Melk Abbey. The evening concert at the Palais Liechtenstein in Vienna was top notch in every way. The tour of the Hospital in the Rock in Budapest was fascinating. On the last night we were sailed along the Danube as the buildings were lit up. This was magical. Read Less

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