We had been on a Scenic river cruise last year on the Rhine which we had enjoyed very much and booked a Rhone cruise for this year immediately on ur return I would say the Rhine cruise is more enjoyable, with more interesting sights, but ... Read More
We had been on a Scenic river cruise last year on the Rhine which we had enjoyed very much and booked a Rhone cruise for this year immediately on ur return I would say the Rhine cruise is more enjoyable, with more interesting sights, but the standard of this year's cruise was well up to the year before. The cabin crew and the sailing staff are first-class and really put themselves out to be helpful, smiling and welcoming. The food is excellent and there is a great choice at all meals. There is free, unlimited liquid refreshment at all times and most of the passengers take full advantage - champagne for breakfast included. The sights on the Rhone are mostly concentrated at the southern end of the cruise, so it was a pity that you had to choose between Arles and St Remy and not see Nimes (very close by) at all. Having said that, we visited Avignon and Lyon and had excellent guides there and at most of the other destinations on the way. The river between Lyon and Chalon-sur-Saone, the last stop northwards, is very uneventful so be prepared to lie back on the deck for some hard-earned rest! The trip is suitable for the very active as well as the not very active at all - and 14 electronic bikes are carried on board for those who want to explore by themselves. "Tailor-made" devices to provide a commentary on where you are and to keep you in contact with the guides on the guided tours are also provided but are rather heavy and cumbersome to carry round your neck, especially when it's hot, as it was on this trip.
What did infuriate us was the attitude of the booking staff at the company's Manchester office who do all the direct UK bookings. Ignorant of distances, locations and timetables, they booked several passenger including us, on totally unsuitable itineraries for reaching the ship and returning home, which had to be changed by the very helpful cruise director in our case, for our return. They also refused to collect us by car to take us to the Eurostar terminus in London and back again, although this was a big feature of last year's cruise. The excuse was that this was a "special offer" and we didn't qualify. Everybody else on the cruise from the UK seemed to have qualified, however. The Manchester office didn't care and didn't help and were actually quite rude to us on the phone. Had we not paid by that time, I would have cancelled the whole trip. Once on the cruise however, we couldn't have asked for better service. Read Less