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Sail Date: October 2018
Despite the challenges of low water on the Rhine, the Avalon team did a wonderful job in making sure we had a great time. We still went to all cities on the itinerary. We had a couple of long bus rides which were tolerable and the Avalon ... Read More
Despite the challenges of low water on the Rhine, the Avalon team did a wonderful job in making sure we had a great time. We still went to all cities on the itinerary. We had a couple of long bus rides which were tolerable and the Avalon folks were great about making sure there were rest stop breaks. The 2 hotel nights were fine though of course we would have rather been on the ship! There were a couple of minor issues with the off-ship logistics mostly around room assignment and luggage procurement, but handled very well by the Avalon staff. I must say that because we had the opportunity to "ship swap" to the Tranquility, we found the food on the Imagery to be lacking in comparison. It was fine; the lunches and breakfasts were ample and fresh, but the food on the Tranquility was definitely a cut above the Imagery. However, the Imagery food was just fine. The shore excursions were very good, though I think one or 2 with long bus rides (e.g. Black Forest) were a bit too much bus (probably because we had been on buses for such a long time already). Guides were all very knowledgeable and mostly engaging. We enjoyed the coffee machine at all hours and all in all thought the experience was both luxurious AND home-y. We are already planning our next trip! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: October 2018
In July, 2018 my friend and I chose Avalon and the Rhine River itinerary in large part because we wanted to travel in Europe in the fall of 2018 but only if each of us could get a cabin where the single supplement was waived entirely. We ... Read More
In July, 2018 my friend and I chose Avalon and the Rhine River itinerary in large part because we wanted to travel in Europe in the fall of 2018 but only if each of us could get a cabin where the single supplement was waived entirely. We made our own flight arrangements and hotel reservations for an extra day going (in Zurich) and returning (in Amsterdam). The trip started a bit shaky when we received the news while waiting in line to board our connecting flight to Zurich that a portion of the Rhine River had been closed to cruise lines because of low water level. Although we were offered the opportunity to cancel for a full refund, our luggage was in the hold of the airplane destined for Europe so we were committed to continue with the altered itinerary involving two days of land transportation by bus before boarding a sister ship beyond the low water for the balance of the trip. We experienced the same land excursions, were put up in two lovely hotels, and were fed wonderful meals, all at the expense of Avalon. Another salute to Avalon is for the generous refund that we were given as well as a nice credit toward another Avalon cruise. We are delighted with the way things turned out. Imagery II and the sister ship Tranquility II are fabulous. Both ships are beautifully appointed and spotlessly clean. We found ourselves calling our guest quarters "staterooms" instead of "cabins" because of how spacious they are. Even the bathrooms are spacious. When not out on guided excursions or enjoying free time to explore on land, we found ourselves in the lounge during happy hour and after dinner, enjoying beverages, the company of fellow travelers and piano music. Except for one lunch served in the lounge, we dined in the main dining room where the choices were varied and many. Several items each meal stood out as above average. Avalon's arrangement for reaching the embarkation destination (Basel) and assistance with disembarkation eliminated potential stressful situations. My friend and I agree that the service staffs of the ships (particularly on the Imagery II) contributed greatly to making this a memorable trip. We enjoyed their camaraderie in the lounge and their playful interaction with us as guests. The cruise director was committed to turning the disappointment of the closed river into pleasure with the alternative arrangements. He succeeded. We had to admit that we were surprised at how interesting all of the shore excursions turned out to be - even those we were somewhat skeptical about. The guides were knowledgeable and personable. We absolutely would take another river cruise with Avalon. The fact that we did not get to see the castles while sailing through the Rhine gorge was not the fault of Avalon. Their guest recovery over that disappointment was outstanding. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2018
I had never cruised on the Rhine before, and I sell a lot of Avalon river cruises, so I thought it was time to experience one of the most popular river cruises for myself. I did the Danube last year with Avalon, and the more I experience ... Read More
I had never cruised on the Rhine before, and I sell a lot of Avalon river cruises, so I thought it was time to experience one of the most popular river cruises for myself. I did the Danube last year with Avalon, and the more I experience Avalon river cruising, the easier it is for me to sell it to customers who contact me. Just wanted to let you know that my friend and I had an INCREDIBLE and AMAZING experience our our Rhine cruise September 29 - October 6. I love selling Avalon, and after two fabulous cruise experiences for myself (one on Danube in 2017 and now this one on the Rhine), it makes it easier for me to relate to my customers better and give them first hand knowledge about what they can expect when they book an Avalon river cruise with me. The crew on the Avalon Tranquility II this year (and the Avalon Panorama last year), as always, was amazing! I even had the same cruise director, Stefano, on both of my cruises. He is exceptionally good at what he does. I need to pass along this story about what happened to me on this cruise: October 1, 2018, my postings on Facebook: I have had major dental work all year. Two months ago 3 Crowns put on the lower right. All was fine until a couple days ago, the tooth in front of the 3 new molar Crowns started to hurt a bit. By yesterday it was painful and sore jaw. No dentists open in AMS on Sat or Sun. Sailed for Cologne yesterday afternoon. Tylenol helped the pain last night. Woke up with swollen glands on the right and now my thyroid is swollen. So this morning- Our wonderful cruise director, Stefano, who is fluent in German, called a dentist in Cologne this morning. I have an appointment in an hour. I just want some antibiotics until I can get back home to Venice. *************** Dental update - Stefano walked with me to the dental office; translated in German to the receptionist, and translated their patient form so I could fill it out. I love him for that! I love German dentists not only that I love how little they charge as the same procedure in the states would probably cost me $1000 they only charge me €164 but a very complete treatment- Dr. did an exam he took an x-ray, drilled a hole in the tooth, did a root canal to clean out the infection and said that it was draining pus had to leave a hole in the tooth gave me an antibiotic prescription and told me how to get to the pharmacy to fill the prescription, and gave me a liquid anti-septic that I can use to spray in the tooth three times a day with the syringes he gave me With the doctor and his staff‘s limited English google translate and a translate program he had on his dental office computer we got along just fine. He was very competent and pain-free and I certainly hope that when the numbness wears off that it doesn’t hurt any longer he said the swelling will go down in two days, Clean it three times a day take my antibiotics two times a day and go see my dentist when I get back Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2018
We chose Avalon on a recommendation of our travel agent, it was the perfect choice for us. Embarkation was a breeze, an Avalon agent picked us up at our hotel and escorted the group to the ship. The ship exceeded my expectation in the ... Read More
We chose Avalon on a recommendation of our travel agent, it was the perfect choice for us. Embarkation was a breeze, an Avalon agent picked us up at our hotel and escorted the group to the ship. The ship exceeded my expectation in the public areas. The room was beautiful but not as large as I expected, I believe balcony cabins on ocean cruises are larger. We were in a panorama Suite, 212. Halfway through the trip we had a ship swap due to low water level in the Rhine gorge. The second ship was Tranquility II, same stateroom number as on Imagery II. The bathroom area in the stateroom was great, the shower area and water pressure exceeded expectations. Food Quality and variety better on Imagery. I felt service was very good on both ships. The staff was very attentive to our needs. Shore excursions were well planned and guides made sure everyone had a good time. We did not miss anything due to the ship transfer, all excursions were completed. Avalon went over ans above with making sure the interruption did not adversely affect the passengers vacation. I will definitely travel with Avalon again and would recommend Avalon to others for their river cruising needs. Read Less
Sail Date: September 2018
We chose Avalon because it sounded like a romantic, relaxing cruise with interesting excursions. They meet every high expectation. The dining food and service was excellent. There was many different choices on the menu which ... Read More
We chose Avalon because it sounded like a romantic, relaxing cruise with interesting excursions. They meet every high expectation. The dining food and service was excellent. There was many different choices on the menu which accommodated all diets. The lounge area was always comfortable with plenty of coffee, drinks, cookies and other treats! The late night entertainment was fun and energetic! All staff were friendly and helpful. Service was excellent throughout the ship. Our cabin was spacious and very accommodating. The bedding was perfect and allowed us a good night sleep every night. We had plenty of time to enjoy our excursions and we had extra time to shop and enjoy the locals. Our very favorite part of the trip was the romantic cruise up the Rhine watching all the castles from the top sun deck. With drink in hand and laid back on the lounge chair, we enjoyed the scenery. We would absolutely love to go on another Avalon cruise! Read Less
Sail Date: September 2018
My husband wanted to book a cruise that would be as easy or as difficult physically as I could handle with knee surgery looming. A friend and I found everything was perfect, especially for a first time river cruise. Everything about this ... Read More
My husband wanted to book a cruise that would be as easy or as difficult physically as I could handle with knee surgery looming. A friend and I found everything was perfect, especially for a first time river cruise. Everything about this cruise went smoothly from the moment we joined up. No worries and every question was answered promptly and fully. Our disembarkation was remarkably easy as well. The ship shines, the crew from captain down to the behind the scenes people were welcoming,cheerful and pleasant. The cabin was more than adequate, beds extremely comfortable for one with a bad back and the food and bar outstanding. I could not have wished for better service. The planned shore excursions and ports of call have a lovely overview of several countries and some of their highlights, loads of information from a local guide, with shortened or modified tours (gentle walks) for those needing them. Personally, I found most of the tour very doable with a walking stick which the ship provided. As we were told at the beginning of the cruise, very little of the entertainment took place aboard ship--most was only e o the planned excursions. My husband did not accompany me on this trip, so I am going to try and get him to go next year. I certainly hope to go again several times, preferably with Avalon Waterways. I simply can't say enough good about them. Read Less
Sail Date: September 2018
We chose this cruise because we love to be active. We have been on many ocean cruises and wanted to try a river cruise. My expectations were high as I have known others who have cruised the Danube and had a great time. I have to say this ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we love to be active. We have been on many ocean cruises and wanted to try a river cruise. My expectations were high as I have known others who have cruised the Danube and had a great time. I have to say this river cruise wildly exceeded my expectations. The key was the active aspect of the cruise. We rode around Budapest on a bike tour. Hiked thru a vineyard to a wine tavern. Hiked up to a castle with a great view of the Danube. Took a bike tour of Vienna. Took an early morning walking tour of Vienna, had coffee in a little cafe, strolled around a little more and had a private tour thru a museum before it opened to the public. Hiked to a hilltop to watch our boat round a bend in the river. Plus, they had bikes available so we could just ride along the Danube at our leisure to just ride. Beautiful! We met wonderful people, too. Most of the other passengers were likeminded active people. You don't have to be an athlete to participate either. Avalon had incredible local guides who broke the group up into small groups so we had fast, medium, and casual hikes/bikes. The ship, cabin, dining, and crew were all top notch. Most of the excursions were included (!) and we had a variety of excursions every day. The only thing I might change was with the Prague extension. We spent a day in Linz and bussed up to Prague. Linz wasn't worth the time. I'd rather have moved on up to Prague or had a longer river cruise and went to Prague on my own. Prague is spectacular and well worth it. If you do take this cruise, and I highly encourage you to do so, sign up for your excursions before you get to the boat. It helps Avalon know how to engage their local guides. Avalon was taken by surprise by how many people wanted to hike and bike. They had to scramble to increase capacity but they did. You will have peace of mind knowing that your river cruise will exceed your expectations, too. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2018
Wanted to see the sights along the Rhine.I found Amsterdam a great place to visit. Germany is an interesting country. The smoothness in which the cruise ship sailed was great and very relaxing. The way that the excursions were carried out ... Read More
Wanted to see the sights along the Rhine.I found Amsterdam a great place to visit. Germany is an interesting country. The smoothness in which the cruise ship sailed was great and very relaxing. The way that the excursions were carried out was very organized. The dining experiences were all fantastic. The cabin was better than a regular hotel room and the cleaning staff were there to straighten up every time we left the room. Crew was especially friendly every minute of the trip. All of the ports were very clean. Dining rooms and lounges were comfortable. This was more than we could have asked for. Christine was fantastic, Thank you Christine. Than you Captain thank you first mate thank to the mater D Thank you all. All of the excursion countries and ports were very interesting to visit. Avalon is a cruise company that has much going for it and handled the ship change with seamless effort. Thank you Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2018
Friends had taken a cruise with Avalon on the Danube and told us how much they enjoyed it so we decided to try a trip. We don't like the big cruise ships so this seemed perfect for us. Two other couples went also, including the couple ... Read More
Friends had taken a cruise with Avalon on the Danube and told us how much they enjoyed it so we decided to try a trip. We don't like the big cruise ships so this seemed perfect for us. Two other couples went also, including the couple who took the Danube trip. right from the beginning, Avalon did everything they could to make our booking, airline booking and excursions as easy for us as possible. Once on the ship, they really outdid themselves. The service from all the staff and especially the cruise director was exceptional. The food was fantastic (I wish the chefs would produce a cookbook). The room accommodation was very nicely appointed and had plenty of storage. We especially liked the sliding doors that allowed us to lie in bed and take in the sights as we cruised. The beds were very comfortable and also the bathroom facility. The excursions were well planned and interesting. Our trip was altered just a bit when we came to a place with low water that could not be navigated by our ship. Christine, our cruise director, jumped into action and coordinated with the Imagery's sister ship, the Tranquility so we could go on an excursion and from their be bussed to the other ship. The tranquility passengers were coming from the opposite direction and, of course, ran into difficulties too. So we switched ships and kept on going. It was a very smooth transition thanks to Christine and the other crew members. This is a trip that I've recommended to all my friends. It was wonderful! If we ever have the opportunity to travel like this again, I would gladly take another cruise with Avalon. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2018
This was our 1st River Cruise, with about 12 Ocean Cruises under our belt. It was a completely different vacation than an Ocean Cruise. With less passengers, you have a more personal experience than on bigger ships. The staff was friendly ... Read More
This was our 1st River Cruise, with about 12 Ocean Cruises under our belt. It was a completely different vacation than an Ocean Cruise. With less passengers, you have a more personal experience than on bigger ships. The staff was friendly and personable, yet very professional. Every part of our trip was wonderful. The embarkation and disembarkation were quick, efficient and seamless. The food was fresh and yummy! They tried to give you tastes of the areas while providing something for all palates. The entertainment was great and the port talks provided valuable information to help us plan our days. We had plenty of free time which we enjoyed and plenty of guided experiences that enriched our journey. The guides were all very knowledgeable and helpful. We did encounter low water on the river which caused us to have to change ships about 1/2 way. Our Cruise Director did an amazing job of making all the arrangements for the switch seem like it was all part of the plan. Avalon took great care to make sure we still got to see and experience everything we had anticipated when booking. We see another River Cruise in our future and we would definately recommend Avalon! Read Less
Avalon Imagery II Ratings
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