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13 Zurich to Europe - All Cruise Reviews

The cruise director made us feel at ease as we sailed along the Danube, parting his knowledge with us and making sure we knew what we were doing at all times. It definitely took the stress out of a holiday! All the staff on board were ... Read More
The cruise director made us feel at ease as we sailed along the Danube, parting his knowledge with us and making sure we knew what we were doing at all times. It definitely took the stress out of a holiday! All the staff on board were lovely and extremely attentive to everyone’s needs. We visited many cities and went on interesting tours with knowledgeable guides, and were welcomed back every day with amazing food! The ship was always clean and cabins were serviced each day to a high standard. We felt safe and secure all week and never worried about leaving our belongings on board. The entertainment was well organised so we always felt like there was something to look forward to even if we didn’t go on an excursion. Most of all we enjoyed getting to know all the guests and experiencing an amazing time together! I would highly recommend an Emerald cruise to anyone who wants a stress free relaxing holiday, with still plenty to see! It’s not a huge ship either, with only around 150 passengers we all felt well cared for. Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
Scenic was superb in every respect. Service was exceptional --- crew could not have been more attentive. The accommodations were excellent -- better than most hotels that we have experienced around the world. Amazing attention to detail ... Read More
Scenic was superb in every respect. Service was exceptional --- crew could not have been more attentive. The accommodations were excellent -- better than most hotels that we have experienced around the world. Amazing attention to detail with the passengers/customers in mind at every turn. The food was remarkable ...variety, presentation, quantity, were well thought through. We really appreciated the all-inclusive nature of this trip - a positive with Scenic. Nice diversity of clientele: age, gender, country of origin. Was not just a gathering of rich geriatrics that characterizes too many "luxury" cruises. We thought one of the more subtle, but outstanding aspects of this ship was how well the staff/crew interacted with one another, got along, and were collegial. There really was an atmosphere created that made the cruise a delightful and restful experience. It was evidence of a well-run and quality operation. Plenty of flexibility on the shore excursions. Tour director was outstanding ...really knew her stuff. The schedule and operations went off without a hitch. Overall, this could not have been a better experience. Definitely a 5! Read Less
Sail Date July 2019
This cruise was from Basel to Amsterdam. Unfortunately, a Viking ship had hit a lock and the Opal had to end the previous journey in Strasbourg, so that is where we caught the ship. Emails were immediately sent to inform us that our pick ... Read More
This cruise was from Basel to Amsterdam. Unfortunately, a Viking ship had hit a lock and the Opal had to end the previous journey in Strasbourg, so that is where we caught the ship. Emails were immediately sent to inform us that our pick up and transfers would happen as planned only we would be driving to Strasbourg from Zurich and not Basel. Once on the ship we were escorted to our room. Within 30 minutes I was invited to go talk to the chef about my allergies. All week I received menus in the morning for lunch and dinner where I could select my food and they would prepare it for me without my triggers (peppers). On a tour of the galley I saw my picture on the wall with a not about the allergy and to watch if I sat in their area. All the waitstaff was aware at every meal and let me know it. I have never had that kind of treatment on any other cruise. The excursions were varied in terms of interest, length and physical difficulty. Bikes were available for those daring to ride them. Night time entertainment was very good. The Cruise Director, Yvonne, was beyond helpful and professional. There was not one staff person who spoke anything but English when guests were around and all were obviously helping each other get work done if they had free time. The cleanliness was outstanding not just in our cabin but all over the ship. Our private transfer at the end to the Amsterdam airport was a Mercedes Benz limo- we were expecting a taxi. The whole cruise far exceeded our expectations. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
This was our first cruise ever. We had very high expectations based on what we heard about Scenic cruises and we can say that Scenic far exceeded these already high expectations. The food was excellent, the attention to even the smallest ... Read More
This was our first cruise ever. We had very high expectations based on what we heard about Scenic cruises and we can say that Scenic far exceeded these already high expectations. The food was excellent, the attention to even the smallest detail was outstanding, the staff was excellent, friendly, always smiling and ready to help. We especially appreciated our cruise director, Yvonne! Here enthusiasm was contagious, and her port talks each day were very helpful. The tours were extremely well organized, not too long and had wonderful, knowledgeable tour guides. We especially enjoyed the Heidelberg tour and the Amsterdam canal tour. Even though there was a slight hiccup due to a malfunctioning lock (out of Scenic's control), the Scenic team worked through it seamlessly. We were impressed. We highly recommend Scenic to anyone. We will definitely cruise with them again! Thinking of either the Prague to Budapest or a France cruise. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
Pros: professional staff, very clean ship, liked our cabin BJ202, local entertainment onboard very good, city tours were our favourite, good selection of ports and excursions. Cons: Cabin - no butler in our balcony junior suite as ... Read More
Pros: professional staff, very clean ship, liked our cabin BJ202, local entertainment onboard very good, city tours were our favourite, good selection of ports and excursions. Cons: Cabin - no butler in our balcony junior suite as advertised. Julius, our butler, had other employment commitments on the boat. Almost every time I called him and asked for something he said to call reception. Not answering his cell when I called sometimes and often we had different people (butlers?). Our room steward often forgot to replenish kleenex, qtips, face cloths and bath salt. Air conditioning worked poorly at night and it was very warm in our cabin. Excursions - The Luxembourg excursion was a waste of time. Long bus ride and only about 1 hour to spend touring this city which is undergoing major renovations. The Roman Park: total chaos. Three buses from our ship visited this place and when we arrived, our tour guide was confused and trying to help other tour guides. Wasted approximately 40 minutes standing around and did not see much of the wonderful sites in this park. Strasbourg: homeless people on the streets and questionable characters. Our tour guide gave us a brisque tour of Strasbourg and would rather have had more of a guided tour. Sat down for a snack in the square and people would approach us trying to sell belts. Food: could have had more of a selection rather than repetitive chicken wings for lunch. TIP: Order wine off the menu rather than drinking the local wines the servers constantly offer. Overall, the cruise was wonderful but there needs to be some modifications made. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
It seemed like it had the most to offer. The enclosed balconies with a sliding window worked out great with the cooler weather. The accommodations were excellent and the staff went above and beyond to satisfy their clients. Having all ... Read More
It seemed like it had the most to offer. The enclosed balconies with a sliding window worked out great with the cooler weather. The accommodations were excellent and the staff went above and beyond to satisfy their clients. Having all the gratuities included was so convenient. Our butler Marco attended promptly to our every need, always so courteous and with a smile. The bar staff, Young Marco and Sandy were exceptionally pleasant and a joy to see at our Happy Hour. The food servers, Goran and Percho were efficient and friendly and accommodating. Unfortunately, I forgot the name of our cabin maid, but she was also excellent. she went through the cabin at least twice a day, changing towels, cleaning the bathroom and tidying up, and leaving the yummy chocolates on our pillows every night. And the most important person on our cruise was our cruise director, Yvonne. She was so energetic, professional, and knowledgeable, and left no question unanswered. She went above and beyond to satisfy everyone. Although we have mentioned specific people, we want to emphasize that all of the staff and crew were excellent. Everyone gave us the opinion that they thoroughly enjoyed their job. The only part that could be improved upon, if possible, is being able to disembark closer to an excursion, in order to give us more time in the village etc. On two occasions, we had to travel an hour to one and a half hours by bus to get to our tour of a town or village. This left very little time to actually explore on one's own. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
Trip of a lifetime. And it was made possible by the world class service of Scenic From the moment we were greeted by our chauffer at the airport in Zurich and driven by Mercedes to our hotel. To our butler service and comfortable ... Read More
Trip of a lifetime. And it was made possible by the world class service of Scenic From the moment we were greeted by our chauffer at the airport in Zurich and driven by Mercedes to our hotel. To our butler service and comfortable cabin. To the unlimited beverages available 24 hrs between the lounge service and our mini bar. To the evening entertainment. To the white linen table service in the dining room as well as the snacks in the cafe. To the wide variety and choices of daily tours. To the tour device available on the ship and land for site discoveries. To the farewell dinner of lobster and the serenade by all the staff in the lounge. To the bus trip to the airport going home and being escorted to the proper airline desk. And it really was all inclusive!!! Kudos to Scenic. A wonderful memory to cherish. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
My wife and I,her brother and sister and brother in law, decided to take this Rhine river cruise (Basel to Amsterdam) to celebrate my wife's 70th birthday. Cruising was not high on my agenda for likes but after this experience, we ... Read More
My wife and I,her brother and sister and brother in law, decided to take this Rhine river cruise (Basel to Amsterdam) to celebrate my wife's 70th birthday. Cruising was not high on my agenda for likes but after this experience, we are both keen to do more. In early April, we flew from Australia to London and then after a few days to Basel where we joined the cruise. Everything was great - the food (excellent), the cruise director (to the point, humourous and informative), the guides (knew their stuff and added wit and humour), rooms were cleaned regularly and quickly, the bar persons knew their stuff and nothing was too much trouble. The cabin (level 3 panorama) was comfortable and being able to put our suitcases under the bed gave a plenty of room. The bed was very comfortable and having a 7ft sliding window that could be opened gave us the opportunity on occasions to lie on the bed and watch the world go by. The excursions were interesting and informative and we got good exercise by walking around the towns and cities. I certainly benefited from this. Brother and sister in law relished the walking. The boat had around 170-190 people on board with no children and this made the whole atmosphere calm and relaxed - as it should be. The age group was generally average age of around 50-55 with predominantly Americans and Canadians and a few Aussies to sweeten the pot. Dinner was in the dining room with plenty of choices of food and an endless supply of wine and beer. For lunch, you could go to the dining room for more substantial fare or in the lounge area for something light. Overall ambience on board was fantastic. The only negative that I can identify was that the WiFi was poor (and perhaps that the cruise was too short). My wife and I are now converts and are already thinking about another river cruise but perhaps a little longer in duration. We would recommend Avalon to any who are considering a river cruise. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
I chose this cruise because it was my first cruise ever and was offered on a singles 50+ website. It was a small river ship, and as I was born in Germany (U.S. Army), it as well as Switzerland was at the top of my bucket list. It felt ... Read More
I chose this cruise because it was my first cruise ever and was offered on a singles 50+ website. It was a small river ship, and as I was born in Germany (U.S. Army), it as well as Switzerland was at the top of my bucket list. It felt manageable to me, traveling solo as a deaf person. The ship’s crew were wonderful and unforgettable! Madalin in the dining room was my favorite waiter, always taking care of me and making sure I ordered the best meal on the menu. He also never forgot that I hate red wine and always poured the white without me asking. My cabin steward was wonderful, and so were ALL of the crew members! They were all in a line to greet us as we arrived, and there were many hugs upon departure. The food was fantastic, but for some reason, other passengers didn’t agree; they were used to getting tons of food at the buffets any time they wanted on the big ships. With constant port stops, there was no time to be bored. My only regret is that it was winter, so we couldn’t open our sliding glass door and turn out cabin into a balcony. Read Less
Sail Date December 2018
This cruise was the best I have ever taken. The staff called you by name and was there for all your needs, The food and wine were gourmet and the waiters were awesome. Our room was big and the bathrooms were big. The woman who took care of ... Read More
This cruise was the best I have ever taken. The staff called you by name and was there for all your needs, The food and wine were gourmet and the waiters were awesome. Our room was big and the bathrooms were big. The woman who took care of our stateroom was great. The entertainment was small and cozy but the artists were very professional. We had a French singer with a guitar player one night and another night were 2 concert violinist with pianio. On the other nights we had a piano player and we would request songs. In the lounge you could go and get a cappuccino and pastry. We were late for our first excursion to the Black Forrest but they brought us back Black Forest cake from it, The excursions with the tour guides were small with electronic ear pieces so we did not miss any thing they said. We traveled in December and hit all of the Christmas markets. I would do another cruise with Avalon again. Read Less
Sail Date December 2018
My husband and I wanted to do a river cruise through Europe with our 81 and 90 year old mothers. We wanted to have time together doing something new and interesting for us all. The highlights for us were the really lovely dinners, the ... Read More
My husband and I wanted to do a river cruise through Europe with our 81 and 90 year old mothers. We wanted to have time together doing something new and interesting for us all. The highlights for us were the really lovely dinners, the gorgeous day we spent sailing through the Rhine gorge, and the incredible staff - both on the ship and on the excursions. We met people from different countries and cultures, had lots of educational outings, and experienced it all together! We toured beautiful and historic cities, the Black Forest, and the wine region. Outings to castles, the Maginot Line, and a music museum gave us a variety of new information. We also did a wine tasting, and watched as craftsmen made cuckoo clocks, wooden shoes, and Dutch cheese. We saw how a windmill ground stone to make paint. The canal tour of Amsterdam was amazing and relaxing. There was also some time to eat and shop on our own. And every night, we looked forward to the most wonderful dinners, served with elegance and congeniality. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
Our Romantic Rhine cruise departed 8/19/18 from Basel northbound to Amsterdam. We added two days before the cruise in Zurich (wish it had been 3), and two days after in Amsterdam (would have been fine with one). We chose Avalon because of ... Read More
Our Romantic Rhine cruise departed 8/19/18 from Basel northbound to Amsterdam. We added two days before the cruise in Zurich (wish it had been 3), and two days after in Amsterdam (would have been fine with one). We chose Avalon because of somewhat better pricing over Viking at the time we booked. We had never heard of Avalon, but the travel agent had good things to say. Our itinerary was very similar to Viking's. From embarkation to change-of-ships (more later) to disembarkation, the staffs of both Avalon's Affinity and Felicity, the sister ship, were bend-over-backward welcoming and accommodating. Special kudos to cruise director Tony- a hard-working and super-friendly pro. To prospective first-time river cruisers, if you have only done 3000-passenger ocean cruises, this experience is DIFFERENT. Less passengers, more intimate, better food, no hard-sell jewelry shows, no Broadway shows or casinos, more education, and yes- less evening entertainment. But we were so tired from the day's excursions by dinner's end at 9 or 9:30pm, we just wanted to retire to our room! There was an entertainer in the lounge for some that wanted to dance and drink, but we didn't use that feature. We loved every one of the included excursions/towns. We opted for extras in Colmar (so glad!) and the Maginot Line (fascinating). The food was great, we never had to look for the waiter for more wine at dinner- sometimes we had to cover the glass because we had had our fill. The service was exemplary. The only wrinkle in our week had to do with Mother Nature. Europe is suffering from 3 months of extreme heat and drought. There were stretches of the Rhine that were not navigable for these types of ships. When that became apparent to the captain, the decision was made to swap the Affinity's northbound passengers with sister ship Felicity's southbound folks. The ships simply swapped us out and u-turned back the way they had come. We missed one town (Mainz) but were bused to a sightseeing boat which apparently could navigate the shallower water, so we saw many of the castles after all. We were well compensated for our trouble and given a freebie excursion at the Amsterdam end, and welcomed onto the freshly-cleaned Felicity with friendly smiles and a second welcome dinner to finish our northbound cruise. They were so doggoned nice about it we forgave them for having to pack up and unpack our luggage all over again. And it sure beat the experience of some other ships, which had to complete the tour on buses and hotels. And our cruise director Tony (with whom we had all bonded) came to the new ship with us. No complaints; it was extremely well handled. Disembarkation from the ship went smoothly - until those of us that were staying extra days in Amsterdam were bused to the hotel- then there was some confusion and poor communication about getting our luggage off the bus. Could have been communicated better by the rep on the bus- she certainly had time. Of our pre and post-cruise days, I would say this: we were MUCH more enamored with Switzerland than Amsterdam. From Zurich we did a lovely day trip to Lucerne, took a lovely boat ride on Lk Lucerne, a cog RR up and down Mt Rigi,enjoyed the views and looked around that beautiful city. Switzerland is clean, friendly, and has extremely efficient transportation systems. While we visited beautiful museums and the Anne Frank house, in general Amsterdam was over-crowded, less clean, less friendly, not as easy to figure out the transportation system. The tram drivers slammed some doors in our faces. We felt a bit uneasy a couple times with large throngs of young people crowding us on the sidewalks. And the thousands of bicyclists sure do have the right of way- just ask them!! Maybe we were tired and ready to go home, but not in love with this city, and won't return. Three days after we got home there was a stabbing incident in Amsterdam's Central Station, so we felt our instincts were not totally out of line. Take that, Chamber of Commerce! None of that, however, is on Avalon. We loved our cruise!! I'd do another Avalon cruise in a heartbeat. Read Less
Sail Date August 2018
We have been thinking about a river cruise since retirement 5 years ago. Long time friends called and asked if we wanted to join them on Avalon Visionary for the Rhine and Moselle. So glad we did. It was our first cruise. The cruise ... Read More
We have been thinking about a river cruise since retirement 5 years ago. Long time friends called and asked if we wanted to join them on Avalon Visionary for the Rhine and Moselle. So glad we did. It was our first cruise. The cruise was a total delight. Great scenery, comfortable, wonderful food. The entertainment was well chosen, including the on-board piano player. Service both in the cabin and in the restaurant was always efficient and friendly. The ship was kept spotless. Ports were well chosen and docking convenient to interesting sights. Day tours on shore were interesting with English speaking local guides. Joust, the cruise director, was always informative and herded the "cats" well in a friendly manner. Our friends have an extensive wine collection and brought wine for dinners each night. The staff didn't mind a bit and were very accommodating with extra glasses. Avalon was an excellent value and provided us with all the information we needed to book, arrive, sail, and enjoy the experience. Read Less
Sail Date July 2018

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