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4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2016
First river cruise and we loved it. General age of cruisers were older than us - probably more in their 70's. Not everyone mixed but most people were friendly. Lots of Americans on our cruise. As far as I could tell everyone enjoyed it as ... Read More
First river cruise and we loved it. General age of cruisers were older than us - probably more in their 70's. Not everyone mixed but most people were friendly. Lots of Americans on our cruise. As far as I could tell everyone enjoyed it as much as we did. We had a bit of trouble with flooding on the river and at times we were rushing to get under low bridges. Didn't really matter to us - we don't know what we missed anyway. Not heaps of time in the towns although some of them were quite small towns. Bikes are on the ship and in Regensburg they had a local biking company that supplied bigger bikes who took us 20 kms through farms, around the town etc. It was fabulous and gorgeous scenery. Our itinerary was changed so didn't get to do as much riding as we hoped. Food was all amazing - could not really fault any meal we had. The wait staff were also excellent and eager to please. Was very surprised that the all inclusive drinks just kept coming. Alcohol at any time of the day and as much or as little as you wanted. We had a French balcony room and yes they are small. However you're never in the room so it didn't bother us. It is cleaned twice per day and fresh towels supplied. River Ambassador is old but has been refurbished and we thought it was lovely. Only thing we didn't like were the locks - quite a lot of them between Vienna and Nuremburg and it was noisy at night banging and scraping at times as we went through the locks and disturbed our sleep. We felt like we were treated like royalty - thoroughly enjoyed our cruise and hope to do another one soon!! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2016
This cruise was recommended by our relatives. It was truly a marvelous experience in every respect. The rooms were exquisitely appointed and comfortable. I just wish that they were a bit larger, which was why I rated it a 4/5. The food ... Read More
This cruise was recommended by our relatives. It was truly a marvelous experience in every respect. The rooms were exquisitely appointed and comfortable. I just wish that they were a bit larger, which was why I rated it a 4/5. The food was a gastronomical delight as well. There was a full breakfast daily, as well as lunch, tea, cocktails and dinner. The food was definitely gourmet with many options for those on special diets. I can't speak highly enough about the wait staff. They were the most accommodating people I have ever experienced. The daily excursions were well planned and insightful. There was also daily entertainment in the evening. I am a person who has motion sickness; however, I never felt this boat move. It was wonderful in every respect. It you want to be waited on hand and foot every minute of the day, this is the place for you! Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2016
Uniworld was great. The room was beautiful and the bed was extremely comfortable. The service was amazingly attentive and all of the staff were very professional. If anything, they were too attentive! My husband would sometimes get wine ... Read More
Uniworld was great. The room was beautiful and the bed was extremely comfortable. The service was amazingly attentive and all of the staff were very professional. If anything, they were too attentive! My husband would sometimes get wine and not even drink it, just so people would stop asking him if he wanted some! Our cruise director was Thierry and our hotel manager was Yann. They are both French and were very visible during the entire trip, and made sure everything was running smoothly and that everyone was happy. The head chef and restaurant manager were also extremely visible and attentive. The food was really good, albeit heavy, and the wines were nice. The only downside on our trip was that my husband ended up getting food poisoning, I think from a restaurant we ate at in Lyon before getting on the ship. Nobody else got sick (including me) so I doubt it was anything he ate on the ship. He was down and out for almost 3 days, which left me exploring a lot of the ports on my own. While he was sick, all of the staff on the boat was very attentive to his needs. They were always asking how he was doing, arranged for a doctor to come onto the ship to look at him, and picked up prescriptions for him. The restaurant manager made me plates of crackers, rice, and plain chicken to bring him. I wish he did not get sick but I was glad he was in good hands on the ship. I really loved Provence. My favorite port was Avignon. I actually did not even do the included tour there because I opted for the optional included tour of Pont du Gard (it no longer costs extra!) which was also amazing. We had a whole afternoon free in Avignon though so I explored on my own. I thought they fortified city was beautiful and really enjoyed the Pope's Palace. I definitely would like to return to Provence again, hopefully bring my kids once they are a bit older. I would highly recommend Uniworld to anyone going on a river cruise. The staff is incredibly attentive and make you feel like no request is too large. Although we were one of the youngest on the ship (mid to late 30s), we still enjoyed it and felt it was not too slow-paced. We were expecting the age gap anyway. The only thing that is a bit lacking is the entertainment on the ship, although we are not really into that sort of thing anyway so it didn't bother us. I pretty much got off the boat and went exploring whenever we were docked. The nice thing about a river cruise is that you can do that since you dock right at the towns! Read Less
10 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2016
This was our first cruise of any kind, as well as being our first trip to Europe and everything, absolutely everything, was amazing! We are now Uniworld travellers for life! I have been singing their praises since we got home. We took the ... Read More
This was our first cruise of any kind, as well as being our first trip to Europe and everything, absolutely everything, was amazing! We are now Uniworld travellers for life! I have been singing their praises since we got home. We took the Castles Along the Rhine tour departing on 3/27 from Basel on the S.S. Antoinette. Embarkation: We arrived in Basel after an overnight flight and connection from Amsterdam and were greeted by the Uniworld rep outside the baggage area. We transferred to the ship without issue and were quickly and efficiently checked in. The Itinerary: Stops were well organized and buses to and from locations were on time and very nice. All operators from the guides to the bus drivers on the excursions were superb. Favorite stops included Speyer, my husband loved the Technical Museum there! Also, Koblenz is a place I would have loved to spend more time, and the tram ride up to the fortress was great! Cruise manager, Chad, was great and very knowledgeable. The day we had the 'scenic' cruising the weather was horrible. Everyone was on deck huddled under blankets and it was freezing rain, however the waiters brought everyone hot chocolate (or something stronger), which was a nice touch! The only negative thing I have to say about the excursions is I wish there was more time included for shopping! That is a personal preference because my husband and I love to shop and a couple of times we ducked out of the guided tours early so we could shop more. Dining: Waiters were fantastic! Alex was our waiter and he was wonderful, very attentive! Food was excellent! I was very impressed with the dinners and the quality was so good. I gained 5 pounds! The breakfast buffet was very good with an omelet station and the 'usual' breakfast items (bacon, sausage, eggs, croissants etc). Lunch buffet was good as well. Entertainment & Lounge/Bar: There was a duo (I think they were father/daughter) almost every night who were very talented. The cruise was not full and most nights they were singing to an almost empty lounge but they kept up the pace and were very enjoyable. The lounge at night was a the perfect area for us to sit and relax after dinner. I loved how much room there was in general on the ship as well. You were never 'fighting' for a spot anywhere nor were you so packed in that you were forced to interact with people if you didn't want to. This was our honeymoon and we wanted to be alone. The bar tender, a different man named Alex, was our favorite staff member! He was amazing and we loved chatting with him. He always remembered our drink orders and was so friendly! One note about the drinks (at the bar and during meals), I assumed that since it was all inclusive that refills would be scarce to try to pinch pennies on their part, but boy was I wrong! If they saw you were even half empty they refilled your glass. It's the little things like those details that really impressed me. Crew: Peter, the concierge, was amazing! He needs to be recognized for his service! He went above and beyond on several occasions for us when we made requests to do things not on the itinerary (once when we asked about going to the technical museum and the other when my husband wanted to see the ruins of a bridge we were passing after dark). I was so impressed with him, great experience! But all the staff were amazing. Even the housekeeping staff were super friendly and nice (not something you see often if you know what I mean!). Every single staff member seemed to truly love their jobs and couldn't do enough for you. If you asked for something they literally jumped at the chance to make you happy! Such an amazing feeling! We felt like royalty! Everyone seemed very well trained and it all seemed to operate like a well oiled machine! This was our first Uniworld cruise, but will not be our last! We hope to sail with them again this December on a holiday cruise. Can't wait! Travel with them and you won't be sorry! I don't think I could go with Viking now that I have experienced Uniworld. I would literally do a commercial for them I loved it that much! It was truly, 100% all inclusive (drinks, gratuities---everything). It was beyond relaxing to not have to pull out your checkbook left and right while we were there or worry about the tab we were ringing up. Everything was taken care of and we were able to fully relax---it was an amazing feeling! The perfect honeymoon experience! Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2016
I waited a few weeks to write my review because I simply didn't know where to begin. I took a 2 week European trip with 8 days being on the River Empress. From start to finish every moment I spent on the ship was memorable and worth every ... Read More
I waited a few weeks to write my review because I simply didn't know where to begin. I took a 2 week European trip with 8 days being on the River Empress. From start to finish every moment I spent on the ship was memorable and worth every penny spent. From arriving at the dock and being greeted by the captain and crew who swooped my bags up and took them to my room. The room was smaller then I anticipated and I do wish I had paid for a larger room. The room was beautifully decorated and I felt the luxury. I was sharing the room with a friend and it was crowded all the time. Even so, we figured out a way to make it work and usually were in the room at different times. I also met people on the trip who traveled without having to pay a single supplement but I had not been able to find that option. Next time I will have my own room and that will make a big difference. I loved sitting in the room and watch as we navigated up River and through the locks. The crew was simply perfect. I really don't know how service could be better than it was. The crew remembered me and knew all my tastes and preferences and I noticed thAt was true for all the other passengers. Within one day, I had made many new friends and knew passengers and crew buy name. I would easily be Able to travel alone and have time to be alone as well as meet friends to spend time with. I became sick on the trip and the crew took care to make sure that I had extra care. They even helped get me to the apotheke to get some relief. Dining was always a treat and the staff in the dining room were superb. I loved that we could dress casually and be truly comfortable everywhere onboard. I loved the scenic stretch where we saw the castles but wish we could have had actual printouts to follow. The weather was cold and it was not possible to hear the commentary once I moved to the lounge. The gentle walking options were still difficult for me but that was because I was sick and had a hurt foot. Even so, they helped me figure out options that I could handle. They went above and beyond. Sometimes I felt very rushed and didn't have enough time to really explore the town but I realize that they have many people to accommodate. I actually liked the quietness of the ship and that they only had a pianist. I enjoyed being Able to look out the window, write in my journal and visit with new friends. I wouldn't want a bunch of flashy entertainment like on an ocean cruise. I enjoyed the daily meeting to learn about the next day's options. I thought Dirk and Ramona did an exceptional job of making sure everything came off perfect. I also enjoyed watching the crew work on the ship while they navigated the Rhine. The captain spent time talking to us and explained how the locks worked. When it was time to embark I found myself welling up with tears. It was quite overwhelming to think of al the things I saw and the wonderful people I met. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2015
This was my first River cruise and I loved every minute. Cabin was very pretty with nice linens and bath accessories. Bed very comfortable. I had a French balcony, which is really just a window that opens but enjoyed that. While not ... Read More
This was my first River cruise and I loved every minute. Cabin was very pretty with nice linens and bath accessories. Bed very comfortable. I had a French balcony, which is really just a window that opens but enjoyed that. While not spacious, there was amble room and plenty of storage. I was rarely in room so the cabin was lovely for me. Service on-board was exceptional from everyone. The food was delicious and plentiful at every meal. Loved the local items and wine selections. Also every evening there was a chef's selection for each course. Any chances you desired were accommodated by the staff. Excursions were excellent with choices of overall view or "do as the locals" which were more walking. Appreciated the gentle walkers groups for those who needed that. I took the local tours and was not disappointed. Loved the headset for listening to guides. Made the tours much more enjoyable and I could take pictures while listening. Great guides and tour options. Every port was enjoyable. I suggest you extend in Budapest. I flew in early and had 2 days extra. Still did not see everything. Also not to be missed is the concert in Vienna. It is worth the optional cost. Ship entertainment was top notch and fun. Local entertainers added to the regional flavor. Staff were very aware of everyone and made sure everyone was comfortable. Confident that you would never be lost or left behind. My Uinworld agent had flowers in my room which made me feel very special. She was a pleasure to work with and not only answered all my questions but offered suggestions once she identified my travel style. Will definitely travel with Uniworld again. Do not hesitate to travel alone, everyone was so nice and welcoming. Highly recommend to everyone. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2015
We were a little hesitant to do a river cruise: would we at less than 60 be the youngest? Will we be confined? Can we take 10 nights of RSL entertainment? On all accounts wrong! Mid range age, great facilities on ship, fabulous ... Read More
We were a little hesitant to do a river cruise: would we at less than 60 be the youngest? Will we be confined? Can we take 10 nights of RSL entertainment? On all accounts wrong! Mid range age, great facilities on ship, fabulous entertainment with rich lectures on the local culture, top quality food, great, in fact superb staff - we had a ball. It may have helped that the boat being the last of the season going up the Danube was 50% full - it may have been over half of them Australians, or just the places we visited and friendly professional tours, but even as a seasoned traveller, this was the best organised travelling experience we have ever had. Highly recommended, the only slight problem we had, was we needed to exercise early in the tour, as we couldn't say no to the fabulous fare!! Get on the bikes, enjoy the staff and clientele and absorbe the surrounding culture. Amazing. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: October 2015
When my husband and I planned this trip, we decided to add on 4 days in Paris and 2 in Lyon, France. Our adventure started out pretty rocky; the CDG airport (which I suggest you avoid at all costs) was unfriendly, unwieldy, and ... Read More
When my husband and I planned this trip, we decided to add on 4 days in Paris and 2 in Lyon, France. Our adventure started out pretty rocky; the CDG airport (which I suggest you avoid at all costs) was unfriendly, unwieldy, and unintelligible to those who speak no French, and when we got to the train station to board a train to Paris, we learned that the prepaid train tickets did not work. Had it not been for the kindness of a French traveler, we would still be at the train station in tears! We enjoyed Paris, loved Lyon, but had a very long travel day on the train from Lyon to Paris, and then a flight to Munich, where we caught the Uniworld bus (after waiting another hour for other arriving passengers who were joining us on the cruis) that took another 2 hours to get to Passau, where we embarked on the cruise. As soon as we stepped foot on the ship, we both sighed a huge sigh of relief (and I shed a few tears of joy) because we now knew that all our needs would be met. The crew that met us were incredibly hospitable, and this was the beginning of a magical journey down the Beautiful Not-so-Blue Danube. Everything was nearly perfect. The staff, the accommodations, the food, the service, the tours, the guides, the destination points for the tours, the shipboard entertainment, the free-flowing drinks and wonderful attitude of all the crew on board, the free time allowed, the additional opportunities for excursions (the Vienna concert is a must do!), and the people, all were wonderful. We made friends with many of the passengers, and even had dinner with the captain on our last night on the ship, which was a complete surprise. The only complaint I had and that which was shared by other passengers with whom we spoke, was that the bathroom in our stateroom often smelled of "sewer gas." Much like a bathroom on an airplane smells. When we mentioned this to the ship's staff, they did something, but it did not eliminate the problem, so we spent 8 nights in a room with a somewhat foul odor, which we seemed to "get used to" as long as we were in the room. Other passengers suggested putting a wet wash cloth over the drains in the sink and shower, but when we did this, they were removed by ship staff -- probably believing we had left them behind by accident. All in all, we would do another river cruise in a heart beat -- unfortunately, finances don't allow for such luxuries for us more than once every several years, but we will definitely look into another Uniworld destination in the future. Read Less
12 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2015
My mother, who passed away earlier this summer, swore she would never go on a cruise. My father, widowed at the ripe young age of 79 and overwhelmed by sadness and being alone, asked me to accompany him on a cruise. We had friends who ... Read More
My mother, who passed away earlier this summer, swore she would never go on a cruise. My father, widowed at the ripe young age of 79 and overwhelmed by sadness and being alone, asked me to accompany him on a cruise. We had friends who had traveled with Uniworld in Europe previously and raved about the experience. In fact, they took the exact cruise (Castles on the Rhine from Amsterdam to Basel) we signed up for several years before. So we planned the trip around my father's octogenarian cousin in Amsterdam... we'd start there and end there. The flight in coach class from LAX to Amsterdam was great for me, but my dad was super uncomfortable. He would have preferred a stop-over. I think he is nuts. KLM was nice, although they did switch aircraft on us at the last minute and it's conceivable that we got a plane with smaller seats. I admit that the seats were small and close to one another. Again, he would have preferred a break. I say get it all over with. (Note: the flight home was also nonstop, seats were roomier, and the flight was a breeze.) In Amsterdam we stayed at the modest but super comfy (and ideally located) Best Western Delphi on Apollolan, adjacent to the Beethovenstraadt shopping district. Easy to catch the trolley to the heart of Amsterdam, but far enough away for peace, quiet, and cost-effective travelling. Online pricing was great. Location was literally 5 to 7 minutes from the Van Gogh Museum and Rijksmuseum in super efficient and easy-to-use public transit. Got ourselves to the port in Amsterdam for the cruise, easy as pie. Cruise folk were welcoming from the very beginning. We ate lunch on board before sailing - with my dad's cousin, I might add - and despite the cold and light rain (mid-October departure) it was a fun and exciting day. Sites were great along the Rhine. Walking tours, particularly the gentle walkers tours, were ideal for my slow dad. And the availability of the Alpine walking sticks was genius. Whoever thought of that should get a raise. REALLY helped my dad (and many others on the cruise) get around on cobbled streets. Weather was cold, and for the most part grey; for me it was a tremendous and wonderful change from the California drought. My dad, also known as Grumpy Grumperson, was a bit put out, but had the proper clothing and was fine. Heavy coat, cashmere scarf, nice lined gloves and an in-room thermostat... what more could he ask for? Don't ask... Day trips were well-planned, well-guided, and not too overwhelming (not too fast, not too far, not too much information to manage), even though their cost was in addition to the cruise for the most part. My favorite was the Black Forest. Would have loved more time in Strasbourg - guess I'll have to go back. Heidelberg Castle tour was lovely, but if you've been before (as we both had), that field trip is ONLY a shopping excursion. Included for all excursions were ear pieces with transmitters so on tour with a guide, you could easily hear everything being said. That was SUPER clever, and worthwhile. Ship amenities were wonderful. Meals were plentiful, delicious, and varied. Super nice to be able to eat well (read healthy) at every single meal and not feel like I was missing out. The fact that drinks - ALL drinks - are included in the price of admission makes the cruise even better. I had prosecco a lot. My dad is a single malt scotch guy. Neither of us was disappointed. Would have liked a better rowing machine in the gym, but who goes on a cruise to row in the workout room? I guess I do. My dad had a couple of massages and loved them. Thanks for making that service available. Bar/lounge entertainment was a bit 1950s Vegas hotel, but I imagine it's hard to find excellence when you're at sea (on the river) for weeks at a time. Pianist was good, but not great. It's OK - it was background noise to the rest of the trip. And he was far better than having no music at all. Staff were OUTSTANDING. LOVE YOU GUYS! First, they put up with Mr. Grumperson. Second, and more importantly, they were charming, smart, witty, fun, professional, and attentive. Seriously, thank you all. Rooms were surprisingly (to me) comfortable for such a small space. The beds were plush, as were the bathrobes. Room safe was a breeze to use. Bathroom was totally great (love the nightlight feature). HATED when another ship was parked outside my bedroom window, but I'm guessing that couldn't be helped. If it had happened more than once and for more than a relatively limited time, I might have been uncomfortable. Would love to take a cruise with my love next time (although my dad can come too as long as he's less grumpy). But, I have to say, that as far as having a vacation where I was supposed to be looking after my dad while on holiday, the river cruise was ideal, and Uniworld made it totally possible. Thanks, Uniworld. I had a lovely time. I hope I can do it again, soon! Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2015
Our first European river cruise with anybody and we're glad we chose Uniworld, and specifically, the "Legendary Rhine and Moselle" cruise on the River Queen. From the time of boarding to the time of departure for the Basel ... Read More
Our first European river cruise with anybody and we're glad we chose Uniworld, and specifically, the "Legendary Rhine and Moselle" cruise on the River Queen. From the time of boarding to the time of departure for the Basel airport, the service provided by the crew was fantastic...rarely are you pampered to this degree. It was a 9 hour time difference for us to adjust to, which took a few days, but the activities, both ashore and aboard became increasingly easier to get in sync with. The "River Queen" is an older girl, but she wears her age gracefully, is beautifully appointed, and impeccably maintained...on more than one occasion, I saw people on the shore taking pictures of us as we glided by. Crew: Well, there are only so many superlatives you can use but suffice it to say that the staff on our sailing were attentive to our every need and we literally lacked for nothing...from the full "treat" jars in the cabin and lounge, to the staff remembering how you like your favorite drink, and the dining service was exemplary. Our cabin seemed to be "made up" as soon as we vacated for the days activities and I don't recall any question that the reception area staff couldn't answer for you. The dining staff, from chef to waiter, were top-notch and we thought the food delicious and well-prepared. Tours: All very interesting...we would have liked to have had more time in the Roman-Germanic Museum in Cologne as it could be a tour all by itself. The Marksburg Castle tour in Koblenz (with added gondola ride over the Rhine) was well worth the additional cost and the included Reichsburg Castle excursion in Cochem shouldn't be missed either. If you like German white wines, then by all means, do NOT miss the Dr. Pauly wine tasting in Bernkastle. We'd been to the Luxembourg-Trier region in the late 1970's but totally enjoyed our return visit and the stop at the American Military Cemetery. In short, we enjoyed every tour we took, as evidenced by the number of photos we came home with. Entertainment: In addition to the rest of the staff, we would be remiss if we didn't mention our resident musician, Dariousz...he provided a very pleasant interlude after returning from a tour and before/after dinner. The other performers that came aboard in certain cities were also very good. Weather: While mostly overcast with some occasional rain showers, we did enjoy some nicer days towards the end of the trip where you could sit up on the sun deck with a very warm blanket and just take in the scenery that these rivers are so well known for. All-in-all, the weather was only a minor annoyance at most. Disembarkation: There were about 16 of us who had to leave for the Basel airport at 4am for early flights so the crew put out an "early snack/breakfast" for us. Our luggage was taken off the ship, put onto the waiting bus, our cruise director (Christine) came aboard to wish us good-bye and we were very quickly on our way to the airport...all handled very efficiently. Summary: One very nice, but often overlooked feature of Uniworld is that all gratuities are included in your basic cost, and while you may not know what percentage the crew actually receives, it's one less thing for you to worry about when you disembark. We met many very interesting people, had great dining companions, and hope to take another Uniworld cruise in the coming years. Read Less
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