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157 Scenic Romantic Cruise Reviews

This was our first riverboat cruise. We had checked out some others cruises casually but couldn't get excited about any. We went to a presentation put on by Expedia Cruise in Courtenay, BC, regarding Scenic and the guy with the funny ... Read More
This was our first riverboat cruise. We had checked out some others cruises casually but couldn't get excited about any. We went to a presentation put on by Expedia Cruise in Courtenay, BC, regarding Scenic and the guy with the funny accent caught our excitement regarding the boat, the service onboard, and what we would see on the tour. We immediately started planning our cruise that we just got back from. I'm an old fart and my body shows it. The only part of the whole experience that was terrible had to do with the airlines and Amsterdam airport. I know you have to put up with the 9.5 hour flight from Vancouver, BC, to Amsterdam but I could hardly walk afterwards and it is actually kilometers between the international arrivals to the local carrier section. KLM nor the airport staff would assist me in getting transport over to the other side because I had not prebooked it. Coming back I prebooked assistance and that part went smoothly. Since I had already been up for approximately 30 hours, when we arrived in Prague, I immediately crashed (fell asleep on the lovely, soft bed) while me wife did the short orientation tour. My wife enjoyed Prague while I recuperated. I did go out once and enjoyed a little of the wonder of the city. I was a little concerned with everyone telling us to be careful of pickpockets! Breakfast buffet at our Marriott Hotel was excellent with lots of variety. Yumm! (I'm a foody addict) We got on the Scenic Amber in Nuremberg and I was impressed from the word go. The welcome seemed real and everyone was courteous and, for me, this is where the pleasureable adventure really began. I'm rambling a bit here so I'll try and condense the actual cruise.. I've been on big ship cruises before but not at the level of complete service as we got here. The things I especially like were: Cabin - the soft head and knee raising bed; the cozy balcony; the small fridge for cod drinks, replenished daily; Dining - exception meals with additional selections that you can order. They do cater to special food needs. For those of you that drink, there was a different red and white wine presented each day. You never had to worry about running out of wine, coffee, water. Room service always available; Onboard activities - were fun and relaxed.Richard (Otto?) was very personable and gave pertinent information on what was going on the next day or for that night. The cruise wouldn't have been as great without him. The evening lounge entertainment was fun to watch with local groups coming on board at each port; Ports and excursions - I commend the people that picked out the ports we visited, not too many and not too few. All the tour guides were not just informative but also very passionate about their city and country, nice to see and hear; Service - I have nothing to negatively say about the service. Everyone treated us with courtesy and as a person. We had our own butler who was ours 24/7 If we wanted. He actually complained to us that we weren't using him enough! I watch how staff interact with each other and all that I could see was friendly support and comradery between all levels of staff. They even all chipped in to take out the garbage! That's about all I have to say for now except that we didn't pay an additional penny for anything else except for gifts. So eat, drink as much as you want; go on the tours, see the concerts... all included! Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
This cruise was 3 years in the making for us, and at a not inconsiderable cost, I am thrilled to say it was worth every cent. If there was a 6 star option I would choose it. Firstly, sorry for the lengthy descriptions below. Before we ... Read More
This cruise was 3 years in the making for us, and at a not inconsiderable cost, I am thrilled to say it was worth every cent. If there was a 6 star option I would choose it. Firstly, sorry for the lengthy descriptions below. Before we booked this cruise there was little to no information available, so I’ve gone a bit over the top with the detail in case you’re like me and prefer to know what to expect, to be able to plan appropriately. We did the 12 day Antarctica in Depth from Ushuaia departing on 7 Dec 2019. Return internal flights from Buenos Aires to Ushuaia were included in the Scenic quote, but we wanted to have a few days in Ushuaia before the cruise, so Scenic happily refunded our inbound flight portion, and we booked our own one-way flight with Aerolineas Argentinus. I urge you to do this – we did a half day Tierra Del Fuego National Park tour from Ushuaia with Canal Fun and Nature, and really it’s not to be missed. I was also slightly nervous that AA would cancel the inbound flight on the cruise departure day, so wanted to give us a few days buffer. (And ps, the Scenic flight is VERY early in the morning, 7am or so. Ugh, not for me). Ushuaia is a small and walkable town with an interesting history. The “Blue Bus” 1 hr city tour was fun (in a Fawlty Towers kind of way), with steamed up windows and cramped seats, but we had a bit of a laugh, and enjoyed touring through the suburbs and local beauty spots. Embarkation - walking along the Ushuaia pier to Scenic Eclipse was a little bit emotional – we were amongst those impacted by the building delays, so to finally board the ship 12 months on from the original departure date was quite surreal. Boarding was quick (even for us who forgot to attach our luggage tags to the luggage, duh), and we were in our cabin within 15 minutes of arriving – the luggage arrived just a minute later. Cabin - #627 was a Deluxe Verandah (almost the “middle of the middle” of the ship – booked to minimize sea sickness) on the starboard side, and was plenty big enough for the 2 of us. It had a king size bed (like sleeping on a cloud), a little seating area, heaps of storage, usb charging points next to the bed (yes!), dyson hairdryer (whoa!), unlimited free wifi (sometimes with drop outs, but well … Antarctica !), excellent block out blinds, and an adequate verandah with table and two chairs. Everything was fresh and new. This particular cabin had the bed facing “backwards” ie. When lying in bed you’re looking towards the back of the ship, not forwards to what’s coming up in front. I found this a little disconcerting, but not a major drama. Don’t worry about whether port or starboard is better – there will be 360 degrees of stunning scenery, and the ship often turns to cater for the sub, so either side will afford mind-blowing views. The shower-room was well-lit with a storage mirror above the vanity, drawer space, and open shelving to the side. Others have commented on the lack of towel hanging space with only two hooks, but ours also had a large towel rail next to the vanity; perhaps this has since been incorporated. Large pump-packs of Espa toiletries – shampoo, conditioner, bodywash, handwash and moisturiser were provided. I found the shampoo very drying, but perhaps this was due to the overall very dry air in Antarctica. I found the all-in-one vanity unit slightly annoying because I like to put my makeup bag on the vanity itself, but there was no dry space to do this. Just a slight niggle. There is one MAJOR pain in both Verandah and Deluxe Verandah cabin styles – the large “opening outwards” wardrobe doors. We often crashed into each other if the wardrobe door and bathroom door were open at the same time. This was compounded by the swaying of the ship, which often meant being wacked on the head or back trying to get clothes out of the wardrobe (remember you’ll be accessing the wardrobes several times a day going to and from excursions). Successfully making a coffee with the amenities door and fridge door open, crashing into you while holding boiling hot water, was at times a super-human effort! We would most definitely upgrade to a Grand Deluxe cabin with the walk in wardrobe if cruising again on this ship. Yes we would cruise on this ship again. Sliding doors with strong magnets on Scenic Eclipse 2 please. OK that’s the not so good out of the way. In every other aspect, this cruise was SPECTACULAR ! Common areas – luxurious, comfortable, immaculate, spacious. The Discovery Lounge was the go to place at the end of each day to swap photos and have a nightly cocktail (or 4) with other cruisers. The Theatre was very comfortable – a handful of seats though faced a structural column, so get there 10 minutes before the lectures to nab a good seat. Fellow Passengers - There were 199 Passengers on-board – 50% Aussies, 20% each US/UK, with the remainder being a small mix of Canadians, Germans and Asians. There were a handful of very well behaved teenagers on this cruise; it's not a cruise for young children, and there were none on-board. Butler, Cabin Steward and Restaurant Staff – always a smile and nothing too much trouble. When I tried on my Scenic supplied jacket on day one I found it a little snug … a quick call to Steve our Butler, and within one minute (yes one minute !), he was at the door with a larger size. Was he sitting in the coat storage cupboard ? I have no idea, but his response time to any issue was really quite incredible. Restaurant bookings were organised without a hitch, and Richard kept our cabin immaculately clean and complimentary items always stocked. Again, always with a friendly greeting when we met in the hallway. Expedition Team and Excursions – this is where we learnt that a Zodiac Driver is not just a Zodiac Driver! While being transported onshore, more often than not Chris the Marine Biologist, or Sarah the Geomorphologist, or Pepe the Ornithologist would be sharing their knowledge of the local environment or fauna. Simply incredible knowledge and experience has been brought together on this cruise. There were daily enrichment lectures in the theatre (or simulcast on the cabin tv) by the Team. Danny the Expedition Leader was inspirational and seemed to be everywhere at once, keeping an eye on proceedings and making sure Passengers and Crew were safe. Danny honestly deserves an 11/10 (and perhaps cloning?). Kayaking was our favourite excursion – silently gliding amongst icebergs while penguins are porpoising next to (and under) you while the snow drifts gently down … OMG this was the epitome of the million pinch me moments of this cruise. Sub and Helicopter – Having a lower category cabin may have affected our ability to get onto “the list” for these activities. My husband desperately wanted to go on the sub - each day he dutifully checked the list at reception. It wasn’t until the last day that he was offered a ride. We put our names down for the helicopter but never made it on. I didn’t really care either way, but this was our only negative activity feedback to Scenic - the lack of communication around these extra activities and having to keep checking if you were one of ‘the chosen ones’. It got a bit tedious. I expect those booking the higher cabin categories were given preference, though we found out later that other people in the same cabin category were offered 2 helicopter rides, so go figure. A few weeks before we cruised, Scenic emailed an ‘expression of interest’ for these activities - my husband put down the sub, but we didn’t put down the helicopter, and we didn’t attend the helicopter briefing session on the ship - maybe that affected our chances, even though we filled out the helicopter form on the ship twice. So express interest, attend briefing sessions, and fill out the form on the ship - this should give you a better chance. My husband’s sub was around 30 minutes all up and cost USD$295 pp (worth every cent he said). The Helicopter was around USD$795 pp for 20 minutes, Yikes. Others we spoke to raved about it, so probably worth it in the grand scheme of things. Dining – Wow ! Beautifully presented and always fresh – incredible given there are no provisioning stops during the cruise. The Lumiere degustation is something not to be missed – ask your Butler to book it when you arrive. The menu changes every four days, so going back a second or third time is recommended. The Teppanyaki also needs to be booked in advance if you’re interested. You can simply turn up at any of the other restaurants. Our favourites were Kokos Asian Fusion and Azure Café (healthy options always available). Tips (Antarctica Specific) - • If arriving from Australia, stay at least 5 days in Buenos Aires (beautiful city) to settle into the new time zone and to get over the long flights (I suffered jet-lag for the first 4 days). Also 2 days in Ushuaia before the cruise. • The Scenic chartered flights have a 23kg baggage limit. Be careful of Aerolineas Argentinus which has 15kgs. We paid an extra $15 to have 2 x 15kg bags instead. And no, they won’t let you put it all in one 23kg bag, very inflexible. If you receive the opportunity to upgrade to Business Class … DO IT ! We received an email a couple of days before the flight, paid $50USD pp, and were blown away by the spacious comfortable leather seat, plus a 23kg bag limit, score. It was the best $50 I’ve ever spent - Economy was certainly cramped on the way back to Buenos Aires. • During the cruise you’ll cop a bit of spray in the zodiacs, and if the wind is up it’s bitterly cold, so you most definitely need waterproof pants and gloves (both glove liners with smartphone touchpads, plus waterproof ski type gloves). Scenic will supply the double layered waterproof jacket and knee-high rubber boots to keep you snug and stable on the snow. A neck gaiter/warm scarf and beanie/furry hat are also mandatory. The Scenic website now has a comprehensive “Polar Packing List” – check it out. • You can get away with just two sets of thermals – the ship has 3 large (i.e can do two loads of washing at once) commercial self- service washers and dryers, so it is very easy to throw washing in at the end of the day. We washed 3 times during the 12 days and never had an issue with availability in the laundry. • An good SLR camera with a 300mm zoom and sports mode will get you incredible wildlife photos. See penguin shot taken from our cabin verandah. • You don’t need super-dressy clothes, most Passengers were quite casual. My husband brought a nice dress jacket that he never used, and it took up considerable space (and weight!) in his bag. At night it was more smart casual, I wore black trousers and a nice top. The ship stays warm (perhaps a tad too warm at times), so we wore t-shirts and chinos/slacks/jeans during the day. • Pack Kwells or other sea-sickness tablets - the Drake Passage can be rocky (duh). Waves were only 3-4 meters during our 36 hour journeys to/from the Peninsula, but probably 20% of the Passengers were unwell and stayed in their cabins. I took a Kwell as soon as we rounded Cape Horn (about midnight day one) and had no issues from then on. Same for the return trip. It’s smooth sailing for the 9 days in Antarctica. • Take a few moments to sit down with the penguins. There’s a 5 meter exclusion zone for the penguins – but they don’t have to abide by it ! Have your camera ready because the Adelies are very curious and will come right up to you for a good look. The penguins were nesting on their eggs during our visit, which started hatching around 20 December. Would I cruise again on Scenic Eclipse ? Unreservedly YES. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
For the most part, I have good words and praise for the actual cruise ship staff. They could not fix or be held accountable for things beyond their control, chiefly the marketing of what this cruise was supposed to deliver. The ... Read More
For the most part, I have good words and praise for the actual cruise ship staff. They could not fix or be held accountable for things beyond their control, chiefly the marketing of what this cruise was supposed to deliver. The cruise is billed as a Christmas market tour. But let’s put this promise to test. Day 2 involved a departure from AMS at 13.00, so what do you really see of Amsterdam Christmas markets? Essentially nothing. The main Christmas market does not yet open until mid December, plus the ship leaves mid day so you barely have time to either do the bus ride, spend maybe an hour and half “discovering” Volendam/ Edam, or take a one hour canal ride so you can be back on the ship in time for departure. Day 3. We didn’t arrive to Cologne until 13.00 but can’t disembark until well after 15.00. We are a good distance, at least 45 min walk, to the first Christmas markets by the cathedral. And these markets are not nearly the better ones truly worth seeing. The time is limited because of the need to get back on before 22.00 departure, but I will be generous and say that this opportunity represents the only decent opportunity to see a Christmas market without needing to strap on skates. By the way, cruising through the Rhine during the section loaded with castles sounds lovely until you understand that you will miss most of them due to the “surprise” that the sunset is about 16.00 hours. Must not be a well- known fact, that it gets dark, for the Scenic schedulers. So this part of the trip was not very interesting. Day 4 Kolblenz/ Cochem. I did not go to the Kolbenz, preferring not to spend the majority of my day on bus. I left the boat at Cochem, after the ship arrived, and had barely an hour and a half before needing to be back on the boat. So much for seeing anything. Day 5 Heidelberg – We probably had about 2 hours, by the time you subtract bus travel time, to see anything in this town. When we arrived, the Christmas markets did not open for at least another half hour. Plus, it is Sunday and if anyone in your company knows anything about Germany, then they will know that pretty much EVERYTHING is closed on a Sunday. So, we got to see a lot of closed stores. By the way, we were in the “slow walk” group and our tour guide just motors along at a speed not suitable for a slow walk group. Day 6: Skipped this one because again, it was not worth it. Didn’t fly half way around the world just to get stuffed in a tour bus and see nothing. The time allocated for Baden-Baden was very small, especially compared to the bus time. Day 7. Ironically, and by accident, I managed to get about 4 hours in Strasbourg. To the cruise director Alex’s credit, did organize 2 outbound shuttles and 2 return shuttles to a tour bus area within a 20 minute walk to the city center and the Christmas markets on the night between day 6 and 7. It was a very nice evening, even if organized on the fly, with many people from the ship taking advantage of the opportunity. What happened next was yet another failure by Scenic. This was supposed to be the official day in Strasbourg, the home of Christmas markets for Europe. Cruise director Alex explained that because traffic can be bad on the Rhine and some locks can cause delays up to 8 hours, the ship was going to relocate the night between day 6 and day 7. Last I checked, Scenic should know this and not be “surprised” by traffic on the Rhine. So, the results were brutal. By moving the ship, we got on the bus on day 7, spent just over an hour and a half being driven back to Strasbourg. During the drive, the guide said, “Oh, and if we get there before 11, we can go inside the Cathedral.” What time did we arrive? Just after 10. But where we were parked was a good 45 minute walk, if you are fit, to get to the cathedral, which is the center of the markets. The group my wife and I were walking with was chosen specifically as the “slow group” due to the age and mobility of many of the guests. Despite this designation, the guide kept walking too fast, leaving many of the group far behind. At one point, I hustled two blocks to find her, passing many people in our group. I caught up with her and said in French, English, and Spanish that she was going way, way too fast for her group. She said she will slow down, but by the time I got back to me wife, the guide was a ghost. We were to told to meet back at the clock in front of the post office in the center square, opposite of the cathedral at 12.10 exactly or risk missing the bus back to the ship. By the time most people arrived at the cathedral, it was essentially 11 am….so is 1 hour and 10 minutes what you can realistically call a Christmas market visit for Strasbourg? The pickup point for the bus back to the ship was slightly closer and took just over a half hour to walk to in order to board the buses back to the ship. So, we spent 3 hours in bus time, maybe an hour and a half to “see” Strasbourg Christmas market before getting back on the boat. In short, what Scenic advertises as possible for a Christmas market cruise does not reflect reality. The amount of time spent in these markets is a pittance compared to the sales pitch of your cruise. It’s an exercise in misrepresentation. Lastly, and I know I write this from US perspective, Scenic does not advise clients about a reasonable level of physical fitness / agility that will be required in order to enjoy their touring opportunities. The crew tried to make some accommodations but they clearly can’t fix what is on shore. Scenic Cruises has a duty to advise people about mobility issues they might face in order to make an informed purchase decision. The so called day in Strasbourg brought this issue into the sharpest of focus, although the other days were failures too. And even without mobility issues, the possible time to spend in these cities in markets were negligible compared to the way Scenic markets these tours. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
We had done another Scenic cruise (Bordeaux) and decided to book an area in Europe we hadn’t seen. We chose to travel during the Christmas market season. I have some mobility issues, so feeling safe and secure is important. The ... Read More
We had done another Scenic cruise (Bordeaux) and decided to book an area in Europe we hadn’t seen. We chose to travel during the Christmas market season. I have some mobility issues, so feeling safe and secure is important. The wonderful staff and personnel on the Amber were amazingly attentive. If I even hesitated, there was someone at my elbow for buses, gangplanks, stairs, etc. No one hovered or was overly solicitous, but they always seemed to be there when I needed them. We plan to retake this trip in the spring/summer time to be able to see the gardens. The cruise director was a hoot! He was on top of everything. The entertainment was high quality. Service was extraordinary. Our shipmates included families with adult children, siblings, gay/lesbian, and couples from Canada, Australia, USA, and UK. Most had previous cruise experience. All in all, we find river cruising to be relaxing and one of the best ways to see Europe. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
This was our second cruise with Scenic. Our first was on Scenic Jewel for 8 days, and we had a blast, so we went with Scenic once again. I had been to Christmas markets before but my wife had not, so I told her our next cruise would be the ... Read More
This was our second cruise with Scenic. Our first was on Scenic Jewel for 8 days, and we had a blast, so we went with Scenic once again. I had been to Christmas markets before but my wife had not, so I told her our next cruise would be the Christmas market cruise. We started out with the Prague extension first, and the hotel, The Art Deco Imperial Hotel, was outstanding. I had never been in a hotel room that offered 1 1/2 baths with heated flooring. We were met at the airport by a Scenic representative and transferred to the hotel within 15 minutes of getting through customs. Our tour guide, Tomas, was very helpful and very knowledgeable. One of the best I have ever seen. We went by coach from Prague to Budapest and boarded the Scenic Opal. The rest of the cruise was what I expected from Scenic, which was nothing short of outstanding. The only hiccup we had was when there was some low water concerns at one of the locks upstream. We ended up docked at Vilshofen for a little over a day. Every one on board was offered 3 choices, to stay on board the ship, to discontinue the trip and fly home, or to board motor coaches and continue by land. Each was offered with a monetary benefit. Not one person decided to opt to leave the ship. The captain worked his magic and we were able to continue up river. The man was simply amazing. The cruise director, Alex, kept everyone informed and spirits on board high. The rest of the cruise went on without too many more problems, other then a barge who decided to poke along and slow us up for a while. My only complaint about anything is that they serve a five star meal at dinner. I am and always have been the type of person who doesn't see a good meal unless the plate is covered with food. Also I like good German wines, and there were not enough of them on board. One of biggest benefits of Scenic, is that once you are on board, you do not put your hand in to your pocket for anything unless you buy something from the gift shop. All the drinks are free on board. They do not have "sprit packages" that you need to buy. Alex briefed us on debarkation the day before we were to leave the ship. We were told when we were to have our bags out and when we were scheduled to leave the ship. This made everything go smoothly the next day. We had a chance to say good bye to Alex and to thank the Captain for everything before we were put in a car and transported to the airport. Getting off both of our Scenic cruises have been hard. We were treated well both times. My wife is wondering where we will go on our next vacation, but she did not have to ask which cruise line we would use. It will be Scenic. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
The moment we stepped on board we were in awe. Lovely welcome champagne and greeting by staff. When we first arrived on board we had lunch in the lovely Azure Cafe. For us first impression is a lasting impression. The service was ... Read More
The moment we stepped on board we were in awe. Lovely welcome champagne and greeting by staff. When we first arrived on board we had lunch in the lovely Azure Cafe. For us first impression is a lasting impression. The service was amazing. Our cabin was amazing, and the veranda bigger than we’d experienced before. The ambience was beautiful with beautiful lighting. Our bathroom as well appointed with amazing lighting and large shower with the best shower we’ve ever had cruising and beautiful tapware. The walk in robe was amazing with plenty of storage. The cabins are so well equipped with binoculars, quietvox for excursions and umbrellas. Our cabin steward and butler were extraordinary and very helpful. Every crew member from Reception to Restaurants to expedition team to bar were excellent. The yacht is a discovery yacht and that’s exactly what we got. Being a small ship allows us to go to places the big ships can’t go and having zodiacs on board, submarine, helicopters and kayaks makes the adventure exciting. The Captain (Captain Ewan) and his officers were the best ever. Their care for passengers were second to none. My husband and I have cruised twice a year on all inclusive ships since 2012 and believe Scenic Eclipse have the best of everything. We were very impressed by the Chef’s Table with a gastronomical theatre of food. In fact every restaurant was 5 star. We loved the experience so much we booked two back to back cruises in 2021. Thanks Scenic Eclipse for a wonderful trip! Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
The most beautiful lifetime expirience! First time on a river cruiser and we had a lovely time on board and on excursions. Everything went perfect from beginning till the end, we have met wonderful people for all over the world. Very ... Read More
The most beautiful lifetime expirience! First time on a river cruiser and we had a lovely time on board and on excursions. Everything went perfect from beginning till the end, we have met wonderful people for all over the world. Very pleasent and friendly crew, always with a smile on their faces. Excursions were organised perfectly and everything went smooth. We enjoyed every single guided tour, specially e-bike tour Durnstein - Melk, highly recomended. Cruise director Richard was just amazing and helpful for every question that was asked, the man really knows his job! Mario the Hotel manager was amazing and really we felt like home. Our batler Ratko was so lovely and he has been there for everything that we requested. Restoran waitress Ruzica put a lot of magic in her service, so professional and just perfect! We are very thankful to all the crew, great service, wonderful and tasty food and most important to mention THANK YOU SCENIC - WE'LL BE BACK! Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
I have always wanted to try a river cruise because I have always travelled on ocean cruises. I liked the smaller amount of people, the ports were exquisite, you could see land on both sides of the ship always, no rocking of the boat, ... Read More
I have always wanted to try a river cruise because I have always travelled on ocean cruises. I liked the smaller amount of people, the ports were exquisite, you could see land on both sides of the ship always, no rocking of the boat, the excursions were good except for one where we could not understand our guide. The cons were there was not a lot of choice as far as food, the rooms are small with some issues of smelling the drain in the shower. There was also issues with the woman’s bathroom on one of the floors. Another common thing is changing ships because the water level being low. Talking to the crew this happens almost every time and in that case you are shuttled to the next ship or to your next excursion but that usually is hours away. I’m glad I did it but will think hard about doing it again. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
Great service from housekeeping to the cruise director and captain. Waiters were top-notch and worked extremely hard. Food was very good as were all the drinks. Scenic also hosted a private concert for the passengers at a palace in ... Read More
Great service from housekeeping to the cruise director and captain. Waiters were top-notch and worked extremely hard. Food was very good as were all the drinks. Scenic also hosted a private concert for the passengers at a palace in Rastaat. The Tailormade App made sailing really interesting, particularly down the Rhine Gorge. We sat on top, enjoying the sun and the incredible scenery while the app told us details about the castles and towns we passed. Waiters went up and down the stairs bringing drinks and you barely had time to finish one before they were asking if you needed another. We used the laundry service, placing our bag of laundry on the bed before leaving for a morning excursion. We got the laundry back expertly folded before dinner that night. If I had one complaint it is that the ship seemed to dock a long way from wherever the excursions were resulting in bus rides. This shortened our stays on shore. All in all, I recommend Scenic 100%. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
We knew we wanted to do a Danube/Rhine cruise and after trying to figure out the ratings of cruise lines and also trying to compare pricing, we contacted our travel agent and she did the legwork for us and recommended Scenic. Our cruise ... Read More
We knew we wanted to do a Danube/Rhine cruise and after trying to figure out the ratings of cruise lines and also trying to compare pricing, we contacted our travel agent and she did the legwork for us and recommended Scenic. Our cruise was from Budapest to Amsterdam (14 days) and we also opted for the extension in Prague and a couple extra days in Amsterdam. We were extremely pleased with the hotels we stayed in and the luxurious accommodations we had on board. We loved our cabin which was smartly and sleekly designed and had plenty of storage space. The private balcony, where we could lower the window, was also a plus when we wanted some alone time. Scenic's mobile app worked very well as it alerted us to upcoming Points of Interest and also provided our local guides with different channels to ensure everyone in our small groups could hear what the guide was saying. All Scenic personnel, including local guides, were friendly, informative, and helpful. We liked having a choice of between 3 and 4 daily land tours which were geared to various interests and physical ability. It was great to also have free time to explore on our own! One of the biggest selling points for us was that the trip was all-inclusive so we didn't have to think about airfare, tips, transfers, excursion costs etc. In the evening we often had local entertainers on board which added to the fun. Without hesitation I would highly recommend a Scenic Luxury River Cruise based on my experience. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
The most relaxing active vacation ever! Sounds strange but it’s true; active because there is often something going on or somewhere to be, relaxing because Scenic takes care of all the logistics. It truly was all inclusive; no tipping, ... Read More
The most relaxing active vacation ever! Sounds strange but it’s true; active because there is often something going on or somewhere to be, relaxing because Scenic takes care of all the logistics. It truly was all inclusive; no tipping, even on the airport transfers from/to home. Scenic bills itself as 5 star all-inclusive so we were disappointed to read in the information booklet that “if we received exceptional service” we were free to add a gratuity. Sorry, for what we paid, exceptional service was expected! 68 locks, 803 bridges so it’s definitely a worry about low/high water levels. We were very fortunate as a few days after we passed Passau ship swaps happened. Cabin 206 was perfectly situated, bed was very comfortable, roomy shower with rain head and hand held shower wands. Ample storage; everything was soft close (cupboards, drawers, cabinets, toilet seat). Very impressed with the number of outlets. Great lighting and mirrors make the cabin seem very spacious. We had a couple of minor things that needed attention and, within a half hour, the issues were resolved. Excellent service. The individual blankets had not been washed prior to our arrival so we made sure not to put them back in their zippered pouch so that our cabin steward was aware they had been used and needed cleaning. Our cabin steward was excellent – the best we’ve ever had. They make a big deal about your “butler” but, other than introducing herself the first day, we had no interaction with her at all. That being said, we didn’t have any need for the included services or they were provided by other individuals. Toiletries were great. Hair dryer, Nordic walking sticks, large umbrella, ear plugs, even a long handled shoe horn were provided. Undecided if the sun lounge was worth the additional cost; rafting and/or facing public areas often left us unable to enjoy it but it does make for a larger cabin. Breakfast and lunch buffets were excellent; lots of variety and the breads at lunch were awesome. The pastry chef was outstanding; apple turnovers, croissants and other breakfast pastries were light and flaky. I absolutely loved the butter machine which provided a fresh portion of butter at the touch of a button; definitely a hit with all guests. There are fresh made options available for both breakfast and lunch. Smoothies were tasteless as was the “flavoured” water served at the Late Riser Breakfast in the River Café. We had lunch served in River Café when we opted out of the excursion to Salzburg and, while the selection was fine, the food was lukewarm. The same situation with the Sun Deck BBQ. The warming trays just don’t do the job. They do not serve “fresh” milk and we normally drink milk at lunch and dinner. Opted not to visit Portobellos as we didn't like the menu (beef cheeks!) and we don't drink alcohol so the wine pairing wasn't of interest. Very small portions for dinner. Even by Canada Food Guide recommendations Scenic portions fall far below the minimum requirements. Vegetables and starch are almost non existent! My husband has a small appetite and TWICE he woke up hungry during the night; NEVER happened before in his 72 years! There are limited selections; two cold appetizer options, two hot appetizer options, one soup, one meat, one fish and one vegetarian. Fortunately they have “always available” options. Soups were “made with love” but would definitely benefit from being made with cream. They were watery despite being called “cream of”. My husband said the soup spoons were more like shovels and would come in handy digging in the garden. Meal descriptions left much to be desired and were often not an accurate depiction of what the meal really was. We only ordered room service once and the meal was delivered promptly and the food was piping hot. I have menus and pictures of the meals at: https://www.flickr.com/gp/22259946@N08/Fi6264 With the exception of one employee who twice refused to take an order for coffee in two different venues on two different days to two different people (he just pointed and said “self-serve”) everyone was friendly, efficient and eager to please. There was wonderful interaction between staff members and a very warm environment. Some great moves were witnessed on disco night! Our cruise director Richard (distant relation of Richard the Lionheart) was entertaining, knowledgeable and energetic. Miljenko, Restaurant Manager, was charming and always willing to assist with food concerns. Mario Alberto, Hotel Manager, was an absolute delight and ran the operations with a warm smile and a firm commitment to guest satisfaction. The reception staff were wonderful; always a ready smile and can do attitude. There were 148 guests; Australia, New Zealand, Canada, U.K., a few Americans and one couple from Curacao. It was a great group with everyone having an enjoyable time without any drunken behaviour in spite of the included alcohol. Unfortunately a few guests didn’t make use of the hand sanitizer, complimentary water, shampoo and shower gel and preferred “au naturale” to using deodorant. Opal Lounge had ample, comfortable seating but the very low black tables were a hazard at night as both a tripping issue and trying to find the surface to place your glass. I loved the glass straws! Being non-alcohol drinkers we would have appreciated frozen mocktails. Hot chocolate, teas and coffee available 24/7 in the Opal Lounge was excellent. We were pleased with the offered entertainment. We enjoyed listening to David; a talented musician. The excursions were well organized and stress free. We especially enjoyed the Palais Liechtenstein concert and we have NO interest in classical music. It was definitely an experience not to be missed as was the visit and feast at Marksburg Castle. The banquet is for everyone, the Castle Tour is definitely NOT for anyone with mobility issues or a fear of falling. We really enjoyed the high lock experience, it was so well done with dramatic music added! The highlight for us was sitting on the Sun Deck soaking in the passing scenery between Koblenz and Rudesheim. Life just doesn’t get any better than this. The Scenic Taylormade app was hit and miss on excursions but the City Guides and River View options were excellent. We would rate our experience a 10 but, value for money, 7-8. We’re glad we ticked this experience off our bucket list but with the high cost and the anxiety over water levels it’s not something we’ll do again. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
Best reviews, best TRUE all-inclusive, best dates, best location stops and tours, amazing cabin. The staff is second to none. BBQ on deck, personal service, incredible food and beverages, informative and small-town tours... we will ... Read More
Best reviews, best TRUE all-inclusive, best dates, best location stops and tours, amazing cabin. The staff is second to none. BBQ on deck, personal service, incredible food and beverages, informative and small-town tours... we will be back many time! The ship is amazing, clean and well laid-out. Amazing and varied gourmet meals, well organized tours to very special destinations. The staff attentiveness is second to none. I researched over 25 river cruise lines for the best... this was it. Cabin, although expensive, was spacious and provided an un-encumbered view of all sides of the ship...truly and amazing experience. Special surprises such as an on-board BBQ, nightly entertainment from local sources, private concerts in Palais Lichtenstein, concert pianists, world-class violinists, dancers, and musicians. The cruise director Yvonne is a treasure and the captain and his crew approachable, thoughtful and willing to go the extra mile to ensure a wonderful and life changing experience. We will be back! Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
This was our second river cruise. The first cruise was with UniWorld and he had a great experience, this time around we chose Scenic as their luxury brand was something that we couldn't ignore. We certainly made the right choice. The ... Read More
This was our second river cruise. The first cruise was with UniWorld and he had a great experience, this time around we chose Scenic as their luxury brand was something that we couldn't ignore. We certainly made the right choice. The rooms were larger (we had suites on both cruises) on Scenic, the food was quite good for the most part (some hit and miss but found that on our other cruise as well), but what really stood out to us was the staff. The staff on the Scenic Sapphire were nothing short of amazing. From top to bottom we felt welcome, valued and always taken care of. In fact when the cruise was over and we were staying in Nice for an extra day, we ended up calling the ship to get/verify information about airport shuttles and they immediately took our call and helped us. They didn't just dump us off and forgot about us, they took the time to help us when we asked. From the cleaning staff to the restaurant staff, to the crew members who would ask me if I needed anything when they didn't have to, to the front desk staff and the captain, everyone was extremely nice, friendly and they made our experience the best it could possibly be. For this reason alone I will continue to use Scenic on future cruises. Take a bow, staff of the Scenic Sapphire, you truly made our trip an experience to remember. Thank you! Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
Essentially took this tour with another couple who where wanting to celebrate their 30th Wedding Anniversary. Despite the fact our airplane arrived well over an hour late in Prague the very approachable Scenic representative was their to ... Read More
Essentially took this tour with another couple who where wanting to celebrate their 30th Wedding Anniversary. Despite the fact our airplane arrived well over an hour late in Prague the very approachable Scenic representative was their to greet us and take us to the local hotel. Likewise for the balance of the trip all the services from presentations by the Cruise Director, departure for excursions to opening of the restaurants were completely on time and very timely. The Chef on our cruise provided an excellent array of culinary delights both on the buffet and a la carte services. The cut on everything from slices meats to vegetables and dessert items was flawless. I inquired with the Chef who frequently made table checks about the "secrets" about a "Clear Tomato" that was being served for lunch. Chef Broccoli was most generous and provided a recipe for this exceptional soup. The effort put in by the entire staff of our trip was 110%. They worked well as a team and professional ignored the occasional unthinking and too casual guest. My only concern would be that the dining room was a slight bit noisy and congested and that for "older" folks (70 +) might find it tiring after more than a week. Likewise the rooms will be a tad small for those on the "heavier or tall" side. The Tailormade Scenic software very innovative and highly effective. I only recently have been using a smart phone but found it enhanced the trip. The system was occasionally nonfunctional when listening to the tour guides in large congested areas. However the information and pictures while sailing down the picturesque Danube River very complementary. Did find the survey questionare at the end of the tour rather long and time consuming. I thought it might take 20 minutes to complete but it had so many questions that I ran out of time and had to omit the last quarter of the survey. Cabin balcony excellent. Really liked the size, the glass, even the comfortable chairs. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
We went to a few different presentations from various cruise lines when we looking to book a river cruise. We chose Scenic as it seemed to offer the kind of experience we were looking for. When they said it was “all included” - it ... Read More
We went to a few different presentations from various cruise lines when we looking to book a river cruise. We chose Scenic as it seemed to offer the kind of experience we were looking for. When they said it was “all included” - it was all included - from the fabulous excursions just for the guests on our ship, to on-ship entertainment, all the delicious meals (buffet for breakfast and lunch) and if you did not like what was being offered - you could order a la carte but who would want to with all the selection you had), and the supper meal was a la carte - served with local wines and beers, all the beverages, the service, the cleanliness, friendly staff willing to support your request and then the lovely people we met on board - so top notch!!! We would not change a thing - everything, everything went off without a hitch. We had several options to choose from each day and then also had the ability to do our own thing - with our “tailor made” devices - as your GPS as well as sharing information on all the points of interest at that particular location. The ability to use the electric bikes on board was super awesome - it was great. Our tour guides impressed us with their knowledge and charisma - we learned so much. The whole experience was impressively run with things so well organized - thank you to Darinka (our impressive tour organizer - kind of a “wedding planner” on our ship) who made sure that the excursions were organized for the number of participants from our ship, we had plenty of tour guides, those that required special arrangements were well looked after. Everyone looked after us to ensure that our experience was a memorable one and that we would want for nothing. We even had a butler assigned to us if we wanted any meals in our room or needed something special. It was so unexpected and so very much appreciated, chocolates on our pillow, fridges stocked, snacks in our room and the room was always impressively clean. Each day we were impressed by what we experienced and each day we were more impressed. From the private concert at Salzburg - Sound of Music, to our private concert in a palace to our tour of a castle and our amazing meal and entertainment - and everything else in between - really a trip of a lifetime - we would do it again in a heartbeat. Thank you Scenic and all your staff for a trip of a lifetime and making our 40th anniversary memorable!!!! Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
As an all inclusive cruise we liked knowing what we paid up front was the bottom line, no hidden extras. We have travelled with Scenic before so not a difficult decision. Lovely comfortable beds light airy and clean cabins. This time ... Read More
As an all inclusive cruise we liked knowing what we paid up front was the bottom line, no hidden extras. We have travelled with Scenic before so not a difficult decision. Lovely comfortable beds light airy and clean cabins. This time travelling to a region of France we have not seen before and wanted to learn more about. On board attentive staff, great food , friendly fellow passengers made the ten days most enjoyable and we learned a lot about wine, the grape varieties and wine making. Starting and finishing in Bordeaux which we found to be a delightful city and had adequate time for exploring. Other ports of call included Libourne, Pauilliac, Fort Medoc, Cadillac, Bourg sur Garrone and Blaye, we also took a side excursion to Cognac, a lovely town and of course we just had to see how its namesake spirit is made and tasted at Remy Martin. Recommend to anyone not just wine enthusiasts. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
We chose Scenic as we had travelled with them once before. We were not disappointed. The whole time we felt cared for and nurtured. The cabin was beautifully appointed with an airy balcony and plenty of space. Dining options were numerous ... Read More
We chose Scenic as we had travelled with them once before. We were not disappointed. The whole time we felt cared for and nurtured. The cabin was beautifully appointed with an airy balcony and plenty of space. Dining options were numerous and all food and drink was fantastic quality. Entertainment included an onboard pianist, in addition to performers being brought aboard from various ports. We were even treated to a recital by a classical quartet in a Château, where Scenic docked just for the evening performance, then sailed on. Very special! Most of all, the staff were welcoming, attentive, competent and caring, which always makes a trip. There was always a personal touch. The cruise director was amazing - a French national who was full of wonderful insights into her native country. Hotel Manager ensured all F&B ran seamlessly. Food and drink choices were incredibly varied and top quality. Highly recommend! Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
We were celebrating our honeymoon, the moment we set foot on the ship, we were transported into a world of utter luxury. We were doted upon and treated like royalty. George, the cruise manager, always greeted everyone with a friendly smile ... Read More
We were celebrating our honeymoon, the moment we set foot on the ship, we were transported into a world of utter luxury. We were doted upon and treated like royalty. George, the cruise manager, always greeted everyone with a friendly smile and answered all our questions. I am sure he would have also been quick to solve any issues but there were none. He was on top of everything. Everything was done effortlessly, or so it seemed, from my perspective. The staff was friendly, upbeat and Costi our restaurant server made me laugh, a discreet comedian, suggested food and drink, made me a toddy in the evening. He was a true delight. Vlad our attentive and intuitive butler knew or seemed to know what we wanted before we even expressed our thoughts. We was extremely professional and incredibly helpful. The food was stupendous! The chef came around and wanted our feedback. No wonder! The baked goods are to die for. The lamb, wow. The soups yummy. We loved everything about our trip! What a grand adventure. Sylvia the tour organizers took very good care of us. She took great pains to explain and plan the wonderful outings we enjoyed. Our suite was wonderful, ours was the Royal Panorama. It was spacious, kept spotless and generously supplied with anything one could possibly need. Our laundry was taken care of and returned promptly. The salt room felt wonderful after our massage. I could go on, but will stop here before I write a book. I am still suffering from Vlad ( our butler) withdrawal. If you enjoy a phenomenal adventure and want to feel coddled in luxury, then sign up. You will love it! Guaranteed. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
The staff made an dream experience for us both and memories to cherish. All events and activities were well organized leaving no worries. Professional and friendly the entire trip. The cruise director was very knowledgeable and thorough ... Read More
The staff made an dream experience for us both and memories to cherish. All events and activities were well organized leaving no worries. Professional and friendly the entire trip. The cruise director was very knowledgeable and thorough with all planning details. The reception staff were patient and accommodating to all requests. The host, servers, provide a carefree environment during relaxation times. From the start to the end of the trip nothing was left out and nothing was left wanting. The enrich and cultural events were detailed and educational. The free time to self explore at each stop allowed an opportunity to shop or explore in greater depth. A good pair of walking shoes are mandatory. By the end of the cruise it was difficult to say goodby to staff and new friends. The food and the chef were exemplary allowing for an incredible culinary experience from all counties travelled during the cruise. Thank you Scenic Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
We chose Scenic in part due to the all inclusive price, no tipping, no added fees. We also received a recommendation from our travel agent. We arrived in Amsterdam 1 day early, primarily to help with jet lag. In hind site it would have ... Read More
We chose Scenic in part due to the all inclusive price, no tipping, no added fees. We also received a recommendation from our travel agent. We arrived in Amsterdam 1 day early, primarily to help with jet lag. In hind site it would have been better to have come 2 days early to enjoy Amsterdam more before the cruise started. Embarkation was much easier than initially described. We were told that we would be boarding at 15:00, however we were able to board the ship at 12:30 and enjoy the lounge while rooms were readied and to start to get a feel for the ship. Disembarkation in Budapest was equally smooth and relaxed. From the very first interaction the care and training of the staff was obvious, everyone was friendly and helpful. The ship (Jade) appeared to be recently refurbished and everything was in top condition. The cabin was well laid out and easy to use. The dining experience was excellent, breakfast and lunch were primarily buffet, however a menu was available if a passenger wanted a meal with more than buffet preparation. The dinners were we very delicious and well presented. The entertainment (a quartet, a zither musician, a waltz couple and lessons and Hungarian dancing) were timed with the ports and shore excursions and provided a inspiration during time in the lounge. The service on the ship, at all levels was top flight and everyone was both friendly and helpful. The shorE excursions were also first class with lots of information and pace geared to various levels of needs. In addition the medieval dinner, sound of music show and the concert left us with very happy memories. We did face a ship shift, that is we started on the Jade but at Nuremberg we had a bus ride to change to the Jewel. We had been cautioned that this happens. On the positive side it went like clockwork. We were told what we needed when we needed it. For example we were 1.5 days ahead that this was coming, then the next evening we needed to pack then on the day of the shift, we did our normal shore tours and then after lunch boarded the buses and were in our new cabin in time for supper. For the most part the ships were identical. The jewel had not been updated and the lounge furniture was older and the shower faucet was older but worked well. The only problem was with the WIFI. On the Jade we had great service in our cabin, however on the Jewel we had no service in our cabin. Passengers on one side of us had service while the passengers on the other side of us did not have service. Despite asking reception for help (and they in turn asking engineering to look into the matter), there appeared to be nothing to be done about this, We did not have any children on the trip with us and we are both quite mobile. Would we go again, definitely. In fact we are already dreaming of future trips with Scenic. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
We were told by friends how great the service and overall experience was. It lived up to what we were told. The staff was ready to help and even went out of there way to make the trip enjoyable. It was very nice to have everything included ... Read More
We were told by friends how great the service and overall experience was. It lived up to what we were told. The staff was ready to help and even went out of there way to make the trip enjoyable. It was very nice to have everything included in the price. I have been with other tour providers and it seemed that there were always hidden costs, but not with Scenic even the tipping was covered. The port talks were very informative and helped with making each day go smoothly. The cabins were clean and well thought out. The shower was great and the pressure of the water was better then home. (I was in the navy and boat water press isn,t always great). Dinning was fantastic with every day having a good selection and the dinners being out standing with the quality. On board entertainment and activities hit the mark for the audience. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
Found a great deal on Travel Zoo and have always wanted to do a river cruise. We were also looking for a special holiday to celebrate a 50th Birthday, and 20th and 31st wedding anniversary. The crew was great always on hand to meet every ... Read More
Found a great deal on Travel Zoo and have always wanted to do a river cruise. We were also looking for a special holiday to celebrate a 50th Birthday, and 20th and 31st wedding anniversary. The crew was great always on hand to meet every need - butlers, massage therapist, hairdresser, dining room waiters everyone was great. Loved having the room cleaned twice a day and getting laundry done was a great bonus. Alex’s port talks were helpful, wished we could have had them written out in case you were running late getting ready for dinner. Would have also liked to have had alternate times for dinner but understand why the same timing for all. The night at Table La Rive was really good food and wines were great. Good balance of excursions and time on the ship, appreciated that the excursions didn’t take all day and that they only lasted for a morning or an afternoon with free time. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
Value for money and the all-inclusive nature of the cruise. Meals, extra food, drinks, local tours and most 'before and after arrangements'; all the things taken care of so that we could concentrate on total enjoyment of our time ... Read More
Value for money and the all-inclusive nature of the cruise. Meals, extra food, drinks, local tours and most 'before and after arrangements'; all the things taken care of so that we could concentrate on total enjoyment of our time on board and on land. Ship was an impressive sight and was maintained spotlessly throughout the cruise. Staff were excellent in every way; attentive, caring, generous with their time, smart, alert, knowledgeable, receptive and totally pleasant. Excursions were well-planned, well-organised, comfortable and well-timed. They maximised opportunities available in all docking places. Local entertainment was varied and interesting. The resident musician was a little limited in style but did provide an adequate 'back-ground' ambience during the evenings. Dining was unquestionably excellent in quality, variety, preparation, presentation; the use of regional specialities and simple produce, including wines, was a high-point in itself. The meeting and collection at Lyon Airport was marred by a degree of panic on our behalf, as the actual meeting point description proved to be confusing and we feared that we had missed our transfer. I had to contact the Scenic emergency number at a time when I really needed to relax after flying in from Perth, West Australia. Yes! We certainly would cruise with Scenic again and will recommend it personally. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
A scenic cruise is a real five star experience. It’s quite an investment, but you do get a quality experience. The crew are sensational, they were very attentive and nothing was too much trouble. The food was always fresh, beautifully ... Read More
A scenic cruise is a real five star experience. It’s quite an investment, but you do get a quality experience. The crew are sensational, they were very attentive and nothing was too much trouble. The food was always fresh, beautifully presented and a wonderful variety at all meal times. I would strongly recommend it. The facilities & food are brilliant. Most of the tours were enjoyable and gave us a good glimpse of important attractions and local cultures. Nikola our cruise director was very professional and enthusiastic and always ensured all passengers were well informed of upcoming events, times and places to meet which resulted in smooth transition from ship to tour & back to the ship again... The water levels in the rivers were apparently problematic, but the captain & crew moved the ship along when needed to make sure we could get through ok which we are very thankful for. This cruise really was value for money and definitely will look at travelling with Scenic again in the future. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
We chose this trip as some of our family had already booked, and it was something we thought we would like to do It was an amazing experience, and we all had a fabulous time. We would definitely recommend this to anyone First class ... Read More
We chose this trip as some of our family had already booked, and it was something we thought we would like to do It was an amazing experience, and we all had a fabulous time. We would definitely recommend this to anyone First class accommodation and meals, with an excellent itinerary with first class activities and outings included We hope to cruise with Scenic again in the future. It was so well organised and easy for passengers. The staff were wonderful and very friendly and accommodating All of the onshore activities were value for money, interesting and informative as well as a lot of fun. We felt very pampered and well looked after and couldn’t totally relax and enjoy our cruise holiday knowing everything was taken care of. The food and drink menu and waiters were amazing, and really made life on the ship so special, as did our cruise director, who made sure everyone had a fabulous time. Thankyou Scenic, for a truly memorable holiday Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
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