2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2018
We chose to go on this cruise to experience five countries in a leisurely manner, taking in the passing scenery from our Stateroom. To be fair, we were not too bothered about excursions or onboard entertainment, so our rating in this area ... Read More
We chose to go on this cruise to experience five countries in a leisurely manner, taking in the passing scenery from our Stateroom. To be fair, we were not too bothered about excursions or onboard entertainment, so our rating in this area may not be important to others. Had the trip gone according to plan I have no doubt I would be giving Avalon five stars. The five days we cruised, out of fifteen booked, was exceptional. Whilst Avalon cannot be blamed for poor water conditions, they can be blamed for failing to inform us in time to cancel the trip, on failing to offer reasonable compensation, and on exceptionally poor communications from their customer service area. In short: We cruised for 5 days out of the advertised 15. We cruised through part of one country, rather than the advertised five countries. We were put up in hotels for six nights. Meals, where provided by the hotel at all, were ordinary, at best. We spent many hours being driven point to point on buses, requiring early morning starts and much packing and repacking. We saw very little in the way of scenery outside of the five days of cruising, spending most of the time on motorways. We have been offered compensation of approximately 20% of the total cruise-only cost (nothing for the cost of airfares). When challenged, Avalon just says it is their policy. My requests for a review by a more senior representative seems to have been ignored. Whilst other cruise companies have suffered similar problems, most seem to be able to transfer passengers relatively small distances to another ship. I suspect this is because most have more ships available. By all means use Avalon if you can be certain the river conditions will allow one continuous journey - the ship was great, as were the staff on the ship. However where there is any likelihood of problems, it appears Avalon is least likely to be able to minimise the disruption and will not offer fair and reasonable compensation. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
The Legendary Danube from Prague to Budapest was our first river cruise. Avalon made everything easy and enjoyable. The food, entertainment, service and overall experience was outstanding. We have traveled on many luxury cruise ships, ... Read More
The Legendary Danube from Prague to Budapest was our first river cruise. Avalon made everything easy and enjoyable. The food, entertainment, service and overall experience was outstanding. We have traveled on many luxury cruise ships, but found Avalon on par in terms of what is offered from a river cruise. Avalon provided transportation for all of the excursions, and offered a guide to take the "gentle walkers" separately. The guides were great, and the fact that they accommodated people who had limited mobility was very nice. We spent 3 days in Prague on our own before taking the Avalon bus to embark in Regensburg. The water levels in Europe in September were extremely low, and many cruise ships could not navigate the low waters and had to stay in one location and bus their passengers to their destinations. What's nice about Avalon riverboats is that their design enables them to navigate in lowers waters in comparison to other cruise lines. We were lucky to be able to sail to destinations on the cruise. Our favorite places were Prague, Regensburg and Vienna. I recommend staying extra days in Budapest. The Avalon Passion is a beautiful boat, with comfortable beds and the ship is spotless. I cannot give enough praise to Avalon for their professionalism and service. Read Less
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2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
Always wanted to cruise the Danube. River was low so we had to do a bus for the first 3 days, missing the Nuremberg tour, which wasn't a big deal because we arrived there a day early and explored the old city by ourselves. Avalon ... Read More
Always wanted to cruise the Danube. River was low so we had to do a bus for the first 3 days, missing the Nuremberg tour, which wasn't a big deal because we arrived there a day early and explored the old city by ourselves. Avalon made up for it by giving us the Vienna concert complimentary. The ship was great, very comfortable. We really enjoyed the food and the service. The wine tasting excursion in Budapest was disappointing, but that is the only real complaint we had. Avalon seems very well organized and communicative. Very professional. One thing we really like was the intimacy of the cruise. The river cruise ships are understandably small as ships go, with room for about 160 passengers on our ship. That gave us a great opportunity to meet folks and get together with them routinely. We traveled by ourselves, not with friends we already knew, and met some really wonderful people. Loved Regensberg and Passau. Vienna is spectacular, but almost overwhelming in scope. The concert there is a must do, especially if you love classical music. The night lights tour in Budapest is also a must. Truly spectacular. We will definitely do another cruise with Avalon. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
We chose Avalon because of the service, bed facing window, 7 ft wide "room balcony" (Panorama Suite) and itinerary. The ports were altered due to the low water...but Avalon made it seemless by re positioning the ship to a better ... Read More
We chose Avalon because of the service, bed facing window, 7 ft wide "room balcony" (Panorama Suite) and itinerary. The ports were altered due to the low water...but Avalon made it seemless by re positioning the ship to a better port in Austria (Englehartszell) with easy access to promised stops of Regensburg, Germany and Passau, Germany by luxury motorcoach. Avalon was kind enough to reimburse every passenger for the Vienna concert due to the slight change in itinerary and also offer a free traditional German lunch in Regensburg, Germany. All in all.....Avalon made the entire change easy on all passengers and presented an incredible cruse with relaxing and easy on and off stops along with delicious meals which included complimentary wines and beers. The crew and staff were amazing especially our cruise director Marie who was available almost 24/7. The Captain was very personable.....allowing access to the bridge during sailing times and explanations of the ships operations. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
I chose this cruise for its itinerary in central Europe. The scenery was outstanding. The Danube was very low during our cruise, however, the Avalon ship being newer with less draft had no problems sailing while other lines were forced ... Read More
I chose this cruise for its itinerary in central Europe. The scenery was outstanding. The Danube was very low during our cruise, however, the Avalon ship being newer with less draft had no problems sailing while other lines were forced to dock their ships and bus people from town to town. The people at each stop were extremely friendly. Pretty much everyone we encountered spoke excellent English and didn't mind conversing in English. The ship was top notch and the staff was very attentive. Dinner was outstanding with all of the wine (chose either red, white or rose) or beer you cared to drink. The waiters were constantly refilling our glasses with excellent wine. We had on-board entertainment for 3 nights. Each act they brought on was talented and funny which made for a great show. Each port visit starts with a complimentary guided tour with local guides. This was fantastic as the guides showed you around for a couple of hours and after the tour you were free to wander around at your leisure for several hours until boarding time. I would definitely book with Avalon again. I didn't rate fitness and recreation highly because the boat is limited on what it can offer due to size limitations to fit in the river locks. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2018
We love Avalon and their outstanding staff! Avalon makes each guest feel welcome and special. My opinion, Avalon is more personal and not as commercial as some cruise ships. The Amsterdam to Budapest cruise appealed to use because we ... Read More
We love Avalon and their outstanding staff! Avalon makes each guest feel welcome and special. My opinion, Avalon is more personal and not as commercial as some cruise ships. The Amsterdam to Budapest cruise appealed to use because we wanted to relax and enjoy the scenery as we traveled. To start with, I have to commend Avalon for the fantastic trip we had, especially since our ship "Passion" was stuck in the Black Sea due to low water. Illumination, the replacement ship, and the crew from Passion were amazing. Our Capitan did an outstanding job navigating through the low water point. All the shore excursions went extremely well. Loved our cabin which was roomy with plenty of storage and of course the French doors opened to the view. The configuration of Illumination allowed us to dine in the lovely dining room or in the lounge area where we could watch the view as we cruised. Beautiful flower arrangements added a warm touch. FOOD was delicious! The Chef matched food to the areas we were traveling through. Our Tour Director was a real Pro! He was knowledgeable, personable and accessible! We really cannot say enough about Avalon and their staff and the way they handle their cruises. Yes, we would take an AVALON cruise again!!!!!!! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2018
Recommended by friends who have been on prior AVALON cruises, including this summer on the same one we took but at an earlier time. We also chose it for size of boat, lack of children, number of stops and excursions. The ports were ... Read More
Recommended by friends who have been on prior AVALON cruises, including this summer on the same one we took but at an earlier time. We also chose it for size of boat, lack of children, number of stops and excursions. The ports were excellent, with variation of guides in ports from super to ok. Enough free time and also enough information provided. In fact, everything was timed perfectly - no mixups. The ship was lovely, well designed to encourage socialization and choices for meals. The staterooms were roomy for a cruise, with plenty of storage and it was great that all had outside windows (we never opened ours but there were Juliette balconies). Food was excellent and abundant. Our on-board director, NANCY, was fantastic. She made everything work with great spirit and enthusiasm and problem solving. And she gave precise and well-articulated "briefings" every day. Terrific. A real pro. 99% of our "problems" were of our own making in that we had a small fold-up wheel chair which does not work easily on the old town streets and hills - FYI for anyone traveling with a wheel chair or limited walking ability. Luckily we are used to me parking the chair for my husband somewhere interesting and galloping off on my own to see things beyond his range. As to Nancy and the crew, they made the wheel chair part no problem as much as humanly possible. I would recommend for entertainment that there be more organized after dinner things like scavenger hunts or bingo of some variety or other group games - we did a few but mainly it was passive entertainment and then people went to the bar or their rooms. The days were filled very well; no too long stretches of sailing. We did run out of Danube at the Budapest stop - hardly the fault of Avalon. We were impressed with everything. Met lovely people, all similar enough in age/life stage to fit together well. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2018
We are delighted that we chose to take the 21 day trip on the Danube that included Transylvania and three days in Prague. The trip from East to West gave us a wonderful insight into the people and historical issues of that area. The ... Read More
We are delighted that we chose to take the 21 day trip on the Danube that included Transylvania and three days in Prague. The trip from East to West gave us a wonderful insight into the people and historical issues of that area. The entire crew did a wonderful job of making sure we had a great time. The food and accommodations were first rate! The low water level issue was handled calmly and professionally. We had a wonderful time and will continue to travel with Avalon. Great Cruise Director, Robert is a true professional. The wait staff was excellent, special thanks to Alexander and Andy for their service and friendship. Our breakfast egg chef did an amazing job. When you spend that long on a shop, they definitely get to know you and your preferences and provide service without even an order!! Madija kept our room clean and comfortable at all times. We love the Passion and it's cabin layout. Being able to enjoy our room and the water with the cabin doors open to the river was a delight! Avalon does an excellent job at providing fresh, local food that allows us to sample local specialties along the route. Outstanding selection and beautifully prepared and presented meals. Love the Ice Cream!! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2018
We started our adventure with 3days in Budapest and boarded our ship there. The cruise representatives met us at our hotel with a champagne gathering and information about all the excursions that were included in the cruise and others we ... Read More
We started our adventure with 3days in Budapest and boarded our ship there. The cruise representatives met us at our hotel with a champagne gathering and information about all the excursions that were included in the cruise and others we could opt into. They explained everything to the last detail so we knew what we were doing from day 1.The excursions we had in Budapest were terrific and we got such a good feel of the city. Everything was extremely well organized and we felt very comfortable with plenty of time in between to rest or hop into the next excursion. When we boarded the ship, we had another general "meeting" held by the Cruise Director Tamas. He was detailed, explained everything to us, and was available for any questions any time of day. We had stops in Vienna, Durnstein, Melk, and Passau. Unfortunately we had to take a bus to Regensberg and never got to Nuremburg because of a barge that went aground. But Tamas put together other tours that were not included for all of us to join to help compensate what we lost by being "stuck" in Passau. We took a excursion to Salzberg which was absolutely beautiful. We also went to the Vienna Supreme Concert and a tour through Vienna. Schonbrunn Palace was a beautiful day trip and well worth seeing. After the decision was made that we could not go forward due to the grounded barge, we were put on a bus from Passau to our final destination of Prague. Everything was perfect. We could not have asked for more and would definitely do another river cruise. Cabins were beautiful, food was terrific, staff was friendly and accommodating and it seems always available to help us out with any questions. Read Less
Sail Date: May 2018
Highly rated. Great price. Great itinerary. Great service. The captain was extremely gracious during my conversations with him. Our table service at lunch and dinner couldn't have been better. Our room was towards the rear of the ... Read More
Highly rated. Great price. Great itinerary. Great service. The captain was extremely gracious during my conversations with him. Our table service at lunch and dinner couldn't have been better. Our room was towards the rear of the upper level, which meant we had exclusive access to the stern sitting room with coffee, tea and pastries. I would travel on Avalon again. The food was delightful and offered an array of selections at dinner . Wine service was consistently good, both lunch and dinner. At dinner you eventually find a table and server that works best for you. The onshore tours were well organized and just the right length. The evenings on the bow deck were enjoyable talking with other passengers. The serene setting was most enjoyable. This was a 14 day cruise and seemed long for our first, but the time passed quickly. We could have gone further if we could . Looking forward to our next d=cruise. Read Less
Avalon Passion Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 5.0 0.0
Dining 5.0 0.0
Entertainment 3.0 0.0
Public Rooms 4.0 0.0
Fitness Recreation 3.0 0.0
Family 1.0 0.0
Shore Excursion 4.0 0.0
Enrichment 3.0 0.0
Service 4.0 0.0
Value For Money 4.0 0.0

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