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Sail Date: September 2019
We had a bit of a hick up at first with our transfers after notification by Emerald that we were not going to be able to board our ship in Bernkastel and were afraid we had made a bad choice. Once we were on board, it couldn't have ... Read More
We had a bit of a hick up at first with our transfers after notification by Emerald that we were not going to be able to board our ship in Bernkastel and were afraid we had made a bad choice. Once we were on board, it couldn't have been better. Our cruise director was very personable and pleasant to deal with. I had a bit of a medical issue from a wasp sting and was afraid I would need to go to the hospital if it didn't start to improve, so had inquired with him right away about hospitals nearby. Fortunately, things improved so I didn't need to go, and he checked on me every day until things improved. Our room was better set up than any of the rooms we have had on the bigger ships, far more storage and very functional and clean looking. Our cabin steward kept it spotless. Entertainment on board was enjoyable and all the staff were amazing and attentive. All our arranged tours were wonderful. A delight to have a pool on board as well with the heat we were having. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
An excellent cruise to enjoy. All facilities excellent. Staff excellent . This cruise is seriously tops. The staff were helpful and not over intrusive. It is difficult for staff to provide just the correct amount of ... Read More
An excellent cruise to enjoy. All facilities excellent. Staff excellent . This cruise is seriously tops. The staff were helpful and not over intrusive. It is difficult for staff to provide just the correct amount of friendliness without being invasive. The staff on board Emerald Dawn were excellent. They provided us with a wonderful experience. The organised programme was exciting, and very well planned and we were guided through the most interesting sights of all the cities and villages we were able access. Many of the activities required overseeing at a very high level and the Emerald Dawn staff and guides achieved this level unhesitatingly. The tour guides had extensive knowledge of their area and this was noticed by the passengers. Overall our time onboard the Emerald Dawn was amazing and we would seriously like the staff to be praised for the excellent presentation of the river trip onboard the Emerald Dawn Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
The dates met our needs, the itinerary was what we wanted and the value was ideal. we loved the included morning excursions and liked the fact that they had easy walking tours along with the regular paced ones. the extra not included ... Read More
The dates met our needs, the itinerary was what we wanted and the value was ideal. we loved the included morning excursions and liked the fact that they had easy walking tours along with the regular paced ones. the extra not included tours were excellent France. i thought the food at dinner was superb. the portions were just right. for lunch i felt the extra main courses were a bit large since we usually had salads and soups. we did not partake in many of the after dinner entertainment offerings. the new on and off the ship scanners seemed to work well. having the head phones and channel cards in the room made it easy to get started on all excursions. the disembarkation process was the best i have experienced. very well organized and went off without a hitch. the guides were very good and spoke excellent English. one of the best river cruises we have been on (our fourth) Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
We are coming to the end of our week on the Radiance and it has been fantastic. Only 112 passengers in a very modern boat. Rooms are lovely, even on the lower level, when the windows are large rectangles letting in loads of light. The ... Read More
We are coming to the end of our week on the Radiance and it has been fantastic. Only 112 passengers in a very modern boat. Rooms are lovely, even on the lower level, when the windows are large rectangles letting in loads of light. The staff from the general manager down are committed to making your stay enjoyable. The staff are super friendly and helpful. Nothing is too much trouble. The boat is immaculate and there are hand sanitisers for use when you return. Excursions were excellent and there were very good energetic options including kayaking on the river. Lovely visit to Salamanca with plenty of time to explore the city. Porto is a real treat. Food was first rate as was the wine. For those whose transfer to the airport was after lunch Emerald put on a lovely light buffet in the lounge, wine included. We would highly recommend this trip Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
Fantastic cruise and the crew made it! Three rivers visited with the Moselle the prettiest. Crew were magnificent and helpful at all times. Everything ran like clockwork and nothing was too much trouble. Cruise director and Entertainment ... Read More
Fantastic cruise and the crew made it! Three rivers visited with the Moselle the prettiest. Crew were magnificent and helpful at all times. Everything ran like clockwork and nothing was too much trouble. Cruise director and Entertainment director plus all the hospitality support were brilliant. Children are not allowed on ship, which is brilliant. Excursions well organised. Sometimes you need more free time to look around. Dining - lots to eat and many options. The premier drinks package is well recommended. Entertainment must be difficult to provide across all the age groups. However we found the music to be a bit dated, but this was brought forward a bit after a request! Emerald Marketing needs to reach out to a wider age group as this cruise suits all ages but the perception is that it is for the older age group only. Only downsides were the airport pickup and drop offs which seemed disorganised. Frankfurt airport is awful and there were huge queues. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
Wanted to see some of Europe. This was an excellent choice. Value for cost is terrific. We stayed in lower level rooms and they were very comfortable with quite adequate room. I wouldn't bother paying extra to get a small balcony ... Read More
Wanted to see some of Europe. This was an excellent choice. Value for cost is terrific. We stayed in lower level rooms and they were very comfortable with quite adequate room. I wouldn't bother paying extra to get a small balcony (in my opinion). Food is top notch, but we have no food allergies and are meat eaters. But there are vegetarian options if necessary. The staff is very considerate and helpful. Breakfast and lunch are buffet style while dinner is set. There's a choice of 2 appetizers, 2 soups, 3 entrees and 4 desserts. They also have the "Chefs Favourites" listed which is what the Chef recommends of the previously mentioned options. I went with the Chefs Favourites for all dinners and was not disappointed. They tried to pair the wine with area being travelled through, which was quite nice as well. There was an included excursion at each port and 2 where you had an option. On one of these the cost was extra, but we thought it was well worth it. It was the drive to Chochem. We did recommend on our survey of this excursion that we would have liked another 1/2 to hour of free time. Each stop has its unique features. The ship on/off procedure is well organized. All local tour guides were excellent and all spoke very good English as does the ship staff. The room steward did a a great job cleaning our room daily. Sarah, the entertainment director had evening entertainment of some sort planned but it's your choice to partake or not. The drink package selection could have more options but this isn't a big deal for us. As noted above, we had a great time and highly recommend this cruise. We will sail Emerald again. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
I was interested in visiting the Rhine. Looked for a company and ship which had more activities whilst sailing. Emerald sun not only had a pool, cinema, gym, massage treatment but had an entertainment manager who organised yoga, pilates, ... Read More
I was interested in visiting the Rhine. Looked for a company and ship which had more activities whilst sailing. Emerald sun not only had a pool, cinema, gym, massage treatment but had an entertainment manager who organised yoga, pilates, zumba and other game shows to include all who wanted to join in. She also sang brilliantly and arranged disco nights. A couple of nights we were entertained by outside performers. A very varied and well organised entertainment plan. The restaurant was well run with very varied menu including all diets. They were very obliging whenever there was any type of foods you couldn't or didn't want to eat. They'd always find an alternative. Very attentive ensuring you always had a drink. Everyone served each course together and no hanging around between courses. Our rooms were very comfortable and clean. A laundry service was available at a reasonable cost. All the staff very friendly and efficient and always ready to make us laugh. I would definitely recommend emerald waterways Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2019
We chose this cruise because of the excellent experience we had with Emerald on the Douro earlier this year. The company were very helpful with choosing flights and sorting out embarkation and disembarkation.The ship was very clean and ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the excellent experience we had with Emerald on the Douro earlier this year. The company were very helpful with choosing flights and sorting out embarkation and disembarkation.The ship was very clean and staff were helpful and the Cruise Director was exceptional - thanks Darren! Having a larger pool was a bonus, as were the acuarobics. Entertainment was up to the usual Emerald standard, and the shore excursions and activities each day were interesting and good value. Food was generally very imaginative and we had the services of a famous French chef one evening, who produced a really splendid dinner. It was a very hot week, and the air conditioning throughout the ship was welcome. This meant that outside activities were restricted. I would have preferred a more relaxed dining option like we had on the Douro - i.e. dinner from 7.30 - 9.00 p.m. rather than the set time of 7 with a 15 minute window. Too early for us, but I understand that the Americans like to dine at that time. The ship mainly sailed through the night, and that meant we didn't enjoy much of the wonderful countryside and the excitement of going through the 12 locks - the nicest days were the last two, leaving at 3.15p.m. for the journey. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2019
Having been in the travel business for over 49 years, I wanted to try this cruise line and also take a river cruise, which we had never done. We paid full fare. With some small exceptions, it was a perfect vacation. They provided fabulous ... Read More
Having been in the travel business for over 49 years, I wanted to try this cruise line and also take a river cruise, which we had never done. We paid full fare. With some small exceptions, it was a perfect vacation. They provided fabulous backpacks and ticket wallet pre-cruise. They met our plane, and transferred us to the hotel, even though we arrived two days early to get acclimated to the new time zone. Ship was beautiful, spotless, and cabin space very well planned, with plenty of storage space for our two huge bags of luggage, as we traveled pre and post cruise. We would have liked more hooks. They provided bathrobes and velour slippers, Each room had a flat screen TV with huge number of channels, with movies, TV series, travel videos. Umbrellas, walking canes, earplugs, Moulton Brown toiletries, and WASHCLOTHS---a rarity in France. Shower space was fabulous compared to our last cruise on a regular cruise ship in March. Just wonderful. The only negative was the chairs in our in-room balcony were too big for the space and really, really uncomfortable. Included tours were excellent, the guides on almost every tour were delightful, charming, humorous, knowledgeable and spoke perfect English, which we followed on our Emerald padded headsets, which you re-charge every day. We booked 3 extra tours for the afternoons, and they were worth every penny, as these were spectacular points of interest visually, and you also got to see the countryside on the way to the destination. I don't think you could take a bad picture at any of the places we visited---we took over 75--- and every single one could be a postcard. Tournon was our least favorite stop, as there is not a tremendous amount there---maybe a cooking class could have been offered? Evening entertainment for us was mostly movies in the room, but we did go to the movie trivia night--where I won the bottle of wine! It was lots of fun, though we wished the evening events started just a bit earlier, as 9:15PM was late when you had to get up early in the morning for the tours. We are not morning people, but we adjusted. Our cruise director Darren, and the activities director Didi (I'm sorry if I have misspelled their names) were very entertaining, helpful, and efficient. Loved these guys! My husband took one of the bike tours, and enjoyed it immensely. Never used the pool, gym, hairdresser, masseuse, or did yoga, so can't comment on those activities. Breakfast had 3 times; early, regular, and quick bite so you could make the tours. Buffet of selections for every taste, but darned near impossible to get a cup of coffee right when you sat down. Don't know why they don't have coffee machines in the dining room, as I ended up getting mine at the machine in the bar and walking it downstairs---not good--- or safe. Lunch buffet was also very good, lots of selections, with choice of two kinds of ice creams with toppings, and sauces--- every day. Always a line for that. Again, getting a non-wine beverage here was also a problem, and I ended up bringing my iced tea down from the bar. However, if you are a wine drinker, you're in great shape on this cruise, as they never stop pouring...….ever. Dinner was our least favorite meal. We advised in advance that we don't eat pork products, veal, and I'm allergic to shellfish. The first night there was nothing on the menu I could eat, so I spoke to the maître d. She advised there was always a choice of a steak, salmon fillet, or chicken breast and Caesar salad. So, we ordered the steak the first night. The Caesar salad came with BACON sprinkled on it (!!!) and the steak was very tough, so we stuck with salmon most nights--though I don't love it, it was tastier than a plain chicken breast. The celebrity chef night was absolutely the best meal of the cruise, and we could have had his menu and bread every night and would have been very, very happy. The dining staff needed more training, as they could not accommodate any special requests, i.e. dressing on the side for the Caesar salad. In fact one night I was told that the Caesar was an entrée! They cannot deviate, and don't understand what you are trying to say. Also, they forgot two special meals at two other tables around us, and one passenger was furious. Dinner is one sitting at 7PM, so I understand the difficulty of serving over 130 people all at once. Maybe a smaller buffet in the bar area would help--- like they do for breakfast. I actually prefer buffets, as I can choose what and how much I eat. Dining portions were very small, but OK for us. Miguel the dining manager was very charming, always cheerful---but he has his hands full training this dining staff. Also, they need to try to smile more, as they always seemed stressed---which they were, I'm sure. If you have never taken a river cruise before, please be aware there is lots and lots of walking, sometimes you have to climb up and down stairs as you cross over other boats you are tied up to. Because you are tied up to them on some days, you cannot raise the shades in your cabin---so the "balcony" becomes unusable. But you are off early and don't spend much time in the cabin on most days. Also, this cruise is not suitable for children, as there are no activities for them. Most of the cruisers, I would guess, were over 60. All in all, an almost perfect vacation. Wish they did a Normandy River Cruise! Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
Suberb,clean,modern,well organized ship.Armin, room steward and Michael cruise director were charming helpful and kind.Great staff, meals and itinerary.ThanksCaptain Stamen for great leadership! The included on shore trips were great. ... Read More
Suberb,clean,modern,well organized ship.Armin, room steward and Michael cruise director were charming helpful and kind.Great staff, meals and itinerary.ThanksCaptain Stamen for great leadership! The included on shore trips were great. HOWEVER, those with canes, or disabilities don't have equal access to sites which require extensive walking,climbing .However, staff at the sites eg Vienna private show helped with special access to elevators and seating. The music shoe in Viea was outstandin and worth every penny. Loved the Hungarian band and dancers on board the Sky Glad to have all tips included in price.Easy! The buses to and from sites were well organized . Luggage handled by staff boarding and debarking. Weathe was great for the end of August on the Danube from Nuremberg to Budapest except a bit tpp warm om Aug 30 to Aug 31. I would recommend this trip and itinerary. Just add more otions for those with disabilities and perhaps seat these people first on buses. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
We picked this cruise as it was on offer, so we felt we could do an “extra” cruise this year, and we fancied the Danube. The ship was meant to be the Emerald Dawn but it was changed for the Emerald Sky. The trip started well, with ... Read More
We picked this cruise as it was on offer, so we felt we could do an “extra” cruise this year, and we fancied the Danube. The ship was meant to be the Emerald Dawn but it was changed for the Emerald Sky. The trip started well, with good seats on the plane and priority boarding. We were met at the airport, along with 2 other couples and taken to the ship in a large, comfortable Mercedes van. The ship exceeded my expectations and was modern, spacious and spotless. Check in was easy and we were soon in our cabin. We had opted for the cheapest cabin on the lowest deck with a picture window. It was very reasonable and roomy enough. The sliding door to the bathroom right next to the bed was odd but we didn’t mind it too much, as space would be lost if the door position was changed. The staff were wonderful on the whole. Service was always with a smile. Special mention to Simona, Katerina, Violeta and Zainep and our thanks to all. The food was surprisingly good, although the hot food at breakfast was rarely hot. Buffet lunches were excellent and set meals in the evening were very good, showcasing local dishes. You could always substitute main courses for steak, salmon, chicken or Caesar salad. Entertainment was varied - a good pianist, an oompahpah band (with yodelling!), the liars club was hilarious (guessing which staff member was truthfully describing a ridiculous sounding foreign word) What really made this cruise fantastic was the other passengers. What a lovely group of people. Everyone chatted to each other. We had such a good time and made new friends, some of whom I’m certain we shall see We will certainly cruise with Emerald again. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
The cruise was to celebrate our Diamond Wedding Anniversary and it was a great success. We found Emerald Waterways and excellent company and they and their staff went the extra mile to make the trip enjoyable. We liked the small ship which ... Read More
The cruise was to celebrate our Diamond Wedding Anniversary and it was a great success. We found Emerald Waterways and excellent company and they and their staff went the extra mile to make the trip enjoyable. We liked the small ship which meant we got to know the fellow passengers and met and made some lovely friends. The crew and staff were very effecient and friendly, the food and dinning room service were excellent. The cabin (303),although small, was comfortable and always turned out immaculately by the cabin staff. The trip along the Douro was lovely and the shore excursions well organised and successful.There are probably lower cost river cruises but you get what you pay for. The no cost, free flowing drinks were a bonus. Thank you Emerald Waterways for make our trip memorable. The fact that we were celebrating a very special event was remembered and made even more special by the members of the crew and, of course, the good friends we made. We thank you all! Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
This was a wonderful cruise. Having never been to Portugal or never been on a river cruise, we feel we started at the top. Staff was very good and attentive. Food was exceptional. Land based activities well thought out. Fairly new ship ... Read More
This was a wonderful cruise. Having never been to Portugal or never been on a river cruise, we feel we started at the top. Staff was very good and attentive. Food was exceptional. Land based activities well thought out. Fairly new ship and they have really taken care of it. With 36 staff and 112 people there is bound to be something you like. Remember this is the Douro river, drinking fine wine and port will be involved. Seeing lots of barren and agricultural land will be involved. There is no industry on the Douro so the scenery is awesome. The cabin is a little small but everything is well done and laid out. The one night to the the Pacheca Winery dinner was a flop. No one said a nice word about the wine dinner. If you did not want to do an off ship activity, staff was able to take care of you. Love the little towns and big cities. Captain you are a brave sailor through those locks and canyons. I would do this cruise again. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
This is our third cruise with Emerald. Did same cruise 3 years ago. Beautiful ship. Spacious and spotlessly clean cabins. Excellent service and choice of food and drinks. Very attentive and friendly staff. Interesting shore excursions ... Read More
This is our third cruise with Emerald. Did same cruise 3 years ago. Beautiful ship. Spacious and spotlessly clean cabins. Excellent service and choice of food and drinks. Very attentive and friendly staff. Interesting shore excursions every day. Good entertainment. Absolutely no problems or concerns. Definitely recommend. Daily information sheets and maps of each excursion. Cruise director very knowledgeable about places visited. Guided daily tours very informative regarding town and village histories. Comfortable coaches to same. No problem airport pick up and drop off. Emerald staff at airports to help. Lovely pool on board which converts to cinema during the evening. Free tea and coffee machines 24/7. Free wine beer and soft drinks with meals. Excellent selection of food at breakfast. Buffet or a la carte at lunch. A la carte for dinner with choice regional foods (5 course) or steak, chicken or fish if preferred. All in all an excellent cruise line. Definitely be visiting again. Thank you Emerald for yet again a wonderful 2 weeks. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2019
This cruise was a present from my parents and for a range of reasons I took my son, so our family group ranged from 16-76 years old. I was a bit anxious about this, assuming (rightly) that he was going to be decades younger than most ... Read More
This cruise was a present from my parents and for a range of reasons I took my son, so our family group ranged from 16-76 years old. I was a bit anxious about this, assuming (rightly) that he was going to be decades younger than most people. It didn't make a difference! We had an absolute ball. We were picked up efficiently, fed on arrival and then the secret luggage fairies delivered our bags to our room...with check in being earlier than expected. The cabins were a delight - the window came down to give the impression of a balcony...beds were comfy, shower strong and loads of storage space. The food was brilliant - obviously we ate too much and I had plenty of excellent wine. I bought the extended drinks package, so for a small additional amount, had free flowing wine and beer.Without this, the drinks were slightly expensive. The staff were just brilliant - a special mention to Miguel - the hotel manager - he was everywhere - loading bags, serving ice cream, moving bikes. The company is lucky to have him. Our excursion guides were all slightly' quirky' - funny, knowledgable and at no point turgid or boring. There were a range of walking groups, from a bit of a hike to gentle walking - so catering for everyone. We were rubbish at the quizzes, but at least there were plenty we could try. There is a swimming pool and gym (not huge, but OK) on board, lots of cycles, yoga and aqua. It didn't make a dent on the food I ate - but it could have been much worse! So I have gone from being slightly anxious to discussing our next trip with Emerald! Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
We would thoroughly recommend this cruise.The staff we friendly helpful and attentive.They were very helpful with my dietry requirements (I am gluten intolerant) There was a good balance between sightseeing and relaxing and there were ... Read More
We would thoroughly recommend this cruise.The staff we friendly helpful and attentive.They were very helpful with my dietry requirements (I am gluten intolerant) There was a good balance between sightseeing and relaxing and there were superb views from the ship as we sailed up the Danube.The daily walking tours with local guides orientated you to each new place allowing you to return after lunch to explore further if you wished.The on board infinity pool is small but pleasant.We will definitely choose Emerald river cruises for another holiday.The cruise director,Darren, is truly wonderful -I am sure you are extremely lucky to have him as he could have a very fruitful career on the stage- but his attention to detail - and everybody 's attention to detail, from cabin assistant, waiting staff and chef- has been truly exemplary and unsurpassed by any other holiday company that we have ever been on and everyone's pleasant demeanour is a joy to behold. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
I was really disappointed with Emerald. They advertised their food as being high-end cuisine. It was really average. I had their lunch in the dining room on the first two days of our 14 day cruise, and never returned. There is a lot of ... Read More
I was really disappointed with Emerald. They advertised their food as being high-end cuisine. It was really average. I had their lunch in the dining room on the first two days of our 14 day cruise, and never returned. There is a lot of food, but it was all of mediocre quality. No complaints about breakfast, there was a lot of variety and it was excellent. Their dinners were not high-end cuisine. Again most were adequate, but nothing spectacular. The service on board was outstanding. The wait staff were all excellent, five stars to everyone. The administrative staff all performed their assignments adequately, but nothing out of the ordinary. No complaints about the staterooms at all. There again very high-quality and the stewards who were responsible for maintaining them did an outstanding job. The excursions were disappointing. They were adequate, but nothing more. About half of their local guides were the bottom of the barrel for sure. This was a 14 Day Danube- Main- Rhine River Cruise in July, 2019. The cruise itself is spectacular and I would recommend it to anyone. I booked with Emerald instead of with Viking, and I think I made a mistake. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
After watching the tv show cruising with Jane McDonald, we decided to give it a try, as she had an amazing time. The boat was amazing clean modern well kept, the food was fantastic breakfast, lunch and dinner great choice of food. ... Read More
After watching the tv show cruising with Jane McDonald, we decided to give it a try, as she had an amazing time. The boat was amazing clean modern well kept, the food was fantastic breakfast, lunch and dinner great choice of food. the service was great, polite friendly so well mannered nothing too much trouble very attentive . A lot of the trips where included, the guided tours where very informative, gave in site and place to visit, the guides where all local and very knowledgable. Very relaxing when cruising to out next destination Ideal for complete relaxation on board, we used the pool and sun deck On board services where great something for every one, the high light was being invited on the last night to join the captains table for dinner We defiantly recommend and would use emerald again would look to go on another emerald cruise at a different location Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
We wanted to cruise the Danube, and Emerald gave us the best value for money. Being met at the airport was easy, Staff pleasant and helpful. Embarkation was easy too. We were met as soon as we left the coach, our cases taken from us. ... Read More
We wanted to cruise the Danube, and Emerald gave us the best value for money. Being met at the airport was easy, Staff pleasant and helpful. Embarkation was easy too. We were met as soon as we left the coach, our cases taken from us. Check-in was so quick and we were then given a personal explanation of our cruise card and taken to our cabin. Ship well laid out with a sun deck, lounge and a small pool area.Cabin, clean and tidy and not overly large, but sufficient room for the two of us. Complimentary water in the cabin and every time we went on a tour complimentary water was provided. Tea/Coffee/Hot Chocolate was available in the loung e area 24/7, and was good quality. Buffet style breakfast and lunch, with plenty of choice.Continental style breakfast was available, in the lounge, before the main breakfast in the dining room, and aslo after as well, until 10:00 am. A light lunch was also available inthe lounge as well as a full lunch in the dining room. Dinner had a choice at every course, and also had the staple steak, chicken and salmon too. Wine was plentiful at lunch and dinner. Service was excellent through out the ship. All excursions were well organised and had excellent guides and all ports were very interesting. No problems at disembarkation and was very well organised Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
Emerald took excellent care of us from embarking to disembarking. We were the first guests to arrive for the new cruise. Though the staff was very busy getting the previous guests off , they were attentive to our needs. Nenad ... Read More
Emerald took excellent care of us from embarking to disembarking. We were the first guests to arrive for the new cruise. Though the staff was very busy getting the previous guests off , they were attentive to our needs. Nenad recognized that the members of our arrival group had traveled from long distances (the USA and Australia) and asked his crew to immediately ready our rooms so that we could refresh ourselves. Each day Darren did an excellent job arranging the excursions and events with every detail taken care of. The servers were always attentive but 2, Draganna and Jane, made an extra effort to remember our preferences and serve us accordingly. The food was always pleasing to the eye and palate and the chef should be applauded. We also are appreciative of the housekeeping staff that provided us with a clean and tidy room and clean linens everywhere. So many people seamlessly and beautifully providing us with a very pleasing experience. Standout events for us we’re the bike ride from Melk to Dürnstein and the Waltz Concert in Vienna. The bike ride gave us the opportunity to savor the scenery and the flavor of the small villages. We wouldn’t have missed it! The talents exhibited by the orchestra that entertained us in Vienna were exceptional! Read Less
Sail Date: August 2019
We wanted to be on a river that we haven't sailed on, to visit new places & see castles. The Majestic Rhine cruise fit the bill. We had this trip booked for August 2018, but as we all know now, the water level of the Rhine River ... Read More
We wanted to be on a river that we haven't sailed on, to visit new places & see castles. The Majestic Rhine cruise fit the bill. We had this trip booked for August 2018, but as we all know now, the water level of the Rhine River was too low then, & as such, Emerald Waterways cancelled our trip. We, however, still wanted to fulfill the aforementioned & rebooked for August 2019. We were cautiously optimistic as this trip came to fruition & it did not disappoint. We are frequent ocean cruisers & have been on 3 Avalon river cruises & 1 other Emerald river cruise on the "Mekong Navigator" from Vietnam to Cambodia. So this is our 1st time sailing on an "Emerald" ship. We found the Emerald Sun to be a very clean & comfortable. It appears to me, more modern & brighter than the Avalon ships, perhaps because of their use of mirrors throughout the ship. Other than Emerald's indoor swimming pool, which morphs into a movie theatre, its lay out is quite similar to that of the Avalon ships. The crew & staff on Emerald Sun are second to none. There were all very friendly, courteous & helpful. The food on the Sun was very good, albeit the selection was understandably a bit limited. However, in my opinion, the fish served on the Sun was probably the best I’d ever had on any of the cruises we’ve been on. It was freshly cooked & moist to perfection. We also had a great cruise director, the animated “Wes”. On our 8 day cruise, we had 2 evenings with guest performers, one day with opera singers & the other day with a violinist. We also had 2 days of great singing by “Sarah”, our activity manager. On the other days, Sarah hosted trivia games & the like. There was also 4 movie nights with pop corn in the theatre. We did not partake in any of the available activities, except for Sarah's singing performances. The included excursions, although subjective, but for me, they were very good, with lots of photo ops of old, well kept colourful buildings & churches. Then on the 7th day of our 8 day cruise, we'd left Koblenz at approximately 7 AM enroute to Rudesheim & sailed through the Middle Rhine Gorge, where castles sat proudly on hilltops. All in all, a very satisfying trip. We are ready to set sail again with Emerald. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2019
This is my 26th cruise and the first on Emerald Waterways, I did not expect it to be as good as some I have been on, but the whole cruise exceeded my expectations, the ship is beautiful, spotlessly clean with superb staff, I fully ... Read More
This is my 26th cruise and the first on Emerald Waterways, I did not expect it to be as good as some I have been on, but the whole cruise exceeded my expectations, the ship is beautiful, spotlessly clean with superb staff, I fully recommend Emerald Sky as a truly great value for money cruise From the moment we joined the ship in Vienna, we got a great city tour on the Sunday, Monday we went to Budapest, once again a city tour with a great guide gave us an insight to this lovely city, When we were leaving Budapest, we were all on the top deck enjoying drinks and watching the lights as we sailed down the Danube, Our next stop was Mochas in Hungary where we visited the beautiful walled city of Pecs, it has a beautiful Bassilica and Synagog, We then visited Novi Sad in Serbia and on to Vukovar in Croatia where we were treated to lunch in a local house to taste local food, a lovely warm welcome and great hostility. Our final stop wes Belgrade, a lovely city tour with a guide who could make a living as a comedian, In the afternoon, a visit to the opera house, I would never have believed that one could have such access to behind the scenes, made all the more memorable when we had champaigne and two beautiful singers sang four arias from popular operas and stayed and talked to everybody, the display of costumes was fantastic, A trip to remember! Lar Sheeran Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2019
I couldn't have hoped for more fun on a cruise period the crew was absolutely amazing from the cabin stewards to the captain. Everyone was very attentive and helpful they always had a smile. But, aside from having a lot of fun ... Read More
I couldn't have hoped for more fun on a cruise period the crew was absolutely amazing from the cabin stewards to the captain. Everyone was very attentive and helpful they always had a smile. But, aside from having a lot of fun they're also very professional. Balazs, our cruise director, made us feel just like family. The dining room staff was always there to help. The food was amazing. I don't know how they do it in such a small galley. Kristijan was incredible. He works so hard. Igor always helped and greeted us with a smile. Jela should get paid by the mile because she runs herself ragged. The others like Patrik and Viktor were always so polite and ready to help. I could never say enough kind things. The Captain is a busy many but, even he made us feel like friends. The ports were excellent and the sights were numerous and beautiful. I have never seen anything like it. There was really too much to list and the details are numerous. Budapest is the most beautiful city I have ever seen. The sights, the sounds and laughter will always stay with me. Thank you Emerald Star, you're amazing. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2019
What a great experience we had sailing from Budapest to Nuremberg on the Emerald Dawn. It was our first cruise of any kind. We went with another couple and also made some friends along the way. What did I like so much? - We arrived in ... Read More
What a great experience we had sailing from Budapest to Nuremberg on the Emerald Dawn. It was our first cruise of any kind. We went with another couple and also made some friends along the way. What did I like so much? - We arrived in Budapest a day early. We called to see if we could drop our bags early on the day of embarking, so we could enjoy the whole day in Budapest until dinner. They were accommodating and welcomed us so warmly when we arrived. FYI - the docking spot is close to a subway stop! Recommend the Szechenyi Baths. As the boat stayed in Budapest overnight, we walked up Buda Hill behind the boat (20 min walk uphill) for stunning views of Budepest at night! - Choices/options each day for activities. We like to be active and adventurous and we appreciated the option to go on a hike or bike, or do our own thing at each stop. The guided tours we did do were also well worth the time! Favourite days? Bratsilava and bike trip from Dürnstein to Melk! - Very comfortable rooms, that are well appointed and organized. We were on the bottom floor. Although it would have been nice to be able to open the window for fresh air, we never missed out on views. I was worried about noise, but other than the unavoidable noises like going into locks, we heard little from our room and slept very well on the very comfortable bed! - Many lovely spots to enjoy the boat - large sun deck, lovely patio on the bow near the bar, beautiful restaurant with views from every table, and a very comfortable lounge! And you could always get lovely coffee drinks, tea and cold water. - Favorite spot? The pool with views at the stern, with coffee/tea machine. Great morning spot! - Crew was exceptional! Captain inspired confidence in his ability to navigate the waterways, the room was always well cleaned at respectful times, the dining room staff was attentive, professional and fun! - The food was excellent! And so well planned...loved the flexibility of breakfast (early and late breakfast option), buffet lunch, and the evening meal was always beautiful! Tea time was nice if you missed lunch staying longer in town! - And what made the trip run so smoothly was Nina, our amazing cruise director! She was very kind, enthusiastic, organized, kept things on time, and was so responsive to everyone’s different wishes! Much gratitude for a wonderful trip Emerald Dawn! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2019
Our first cruise of any type - ocean cruises have never appealed to me - but this trip ticked all the boxes for places I wanted to visit, with the added bonus of a private performance in Vienna by Strictly stars Anton Du Beke and Erin ... Read More
Our first cruise of any type - ocean cruises have never appealed to me - but this trip ticked all the boxes for places I wanted to visit, with the added bonus of a private performance in Vienna by Strictly stars Anton Du Beke and Erin Boag, and a dance masterclass/Q&As on board with them the next day. Ship facilities top notch and staff/service an absolute joy. All thoroughly professional yet relaxed and friendly. We particularly loved the glass and mirrors decor which made the ship feel so light and airy. An apparent improvement this year was the introduction of an events manager, so that aside from the two nights where excellent local musicians came aboard to perform, there was always some evening enterainment provided, such as "Battleships/scategories","Family Fortunes," 70s/80s disco night, etc. He also provided an excellent cabaret as a singer himself one night. There was the occasional film night and aquarobics in the pool. Special mention to our Tour Manager, Nina who was a delight - efficient, and very open and friendly. Food: Evening meals were a 4 course nouvelle cuisine menu with a meat/fish/vegetarian option, or you could chose from 3 set menu options each night (steak, chichen breast etc). These were all very tasty, albeit low on the potato side of things! and on the 2 Captain's welcome/farewell nights there was also a palette cleanser sorbet course. Breakfast was a sumptuous spread of everything you could possibly want, with a chef cooking eggs/omelettes live to order. Lunch usually consisted of 2 "hot" dishes, sometimes cooked live, 2 soups, salads, etc, cheeseboard, cakes/desserts. You could also order a main course from the daily menu. Would have to say the hot dishes didn't stay very hot in the warmers, but it would have helped if the plates were warmed as well! Would have appreciated soup spoons as the one-size dessert spoons I felt were too big for the deep sided bowls. Wine, draught beer and soft drinks all included at lunch and evening meal. But bottled cider and beer were charged for. Loved the Vienna concert and performance by Anton and Erin. Our only slight disappointment was that the Active PLUS cycle ride option the next day, which we really wanted to do actually coincided with the Masterclass onboard so we had a tough choice to make. Would have liked to have been able to do both! Port and shore excusions were well organized and very enjoyable, with "gentle" options for those less mobile. Would have to say that if you want to see more of the embarkation location (in our case, Budapest) it would be best to arrive a day earlier. We boarded at 2pm the day we arrived and only got one morning to see the city before the ship sailed at 1pm for Bratislava. At the other end of the trip, Nuremburg, we were fortunate in that our transfer to Munich was not until 2pm so we were able to make our own way into the city for the morning (by taxi) and spend a few hours there before returning to the ship for lunch. Other passengers had morning transfers so saw nothing of the final destination as the ship docks some 15-20 mins drive from the city! The only other nuisance was that we were transferred to Munich airport 6 hourse before our flight, and were therefore lumbered with our luggage for 4 hours before the bag-drop opened. Read Less
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