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Sail Date: May 2019
My first river cruise experience was pretty good, They include wines and beers at dinner. The wines are not all of good quality but they are not bad. They include a happy hour an one hour before dinner, but the bartenders don't know ... Read More
My first river cruise experience was pretty good, They include wines and beers at dinner. The wines are not all of good quality but they are not bad. They include a happy hour an one hour before dinner, but the bartenders don't know how to make drinks. They are very bad preparing drinks and they get upset if I return the drink. Better change for beer or wine before returning the drink. The gym is very small, but nobody uses. Only 2 bicycles and a machine, not weights. The breakfasts are good and the staff serving the restaurant are excellent. We travel with a group of 44 people, so we had a great time on excursions. We paid on the cruise to see a folk dance that would be in an opera building, but the dance was done in a super small room with uncomfortable chairs and without air conditioning, The truth is not worth paying at the dance show cruises in the opera buildings because they only accommodate you in small rooms. The same thing happened to us in the Baltic cruise, it pays dearly for what they give. The room service was quite bad, even one day they put broken sheets on the bed.I had to look for soap because they never left another soap in the bathroom The dinners are very good. DO NOT pay for the Cheff Table, it is not worth paying, even the wine served was three dollars. It is a totally different experience than sea cruises. Very expensive cruise for what they offer. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: April 2019
The AMA Stella is a great ship with an even greater staff. We thoroughly enjoyed all aspects of this cruise. The shore excursions were well organized & there was a good variety of them. Food was generally quite good although the osso ... Read More
The AMA Stella is a great ship with an even greater staff. We thoroughly enjoyed all aspects of this cruise. The shore excursions were well organized & there was a good variety of them. Food was generally quite good although the osso buco left something to be desired. I will give a shout out to Michaela from Romania who is a great bartender/waitress. All wait staff was friendly & did a good job. AMA provided many extra nice touches such as welcome gifts & candy or other treats brought by Boyan the cruise manager to the guests while on shore excursions. Boyan also deserves a shout out! The one hour open bar before dinner was an extra we haven’t had on other cruises. Everything was first class even though we were in one of the least expensive cabins. We have already put a deposit down on a future cruise. So we will be traveling with AMA again soon! Read Less
Sail Date: April 2019
This cruise was chosen because of an interest in the history of the Netherlands and Belgium and the tulips. In advance of the cruise, I spent three days in Amsterdam where I explored the city, visited the Anne Frank House and the Van Gogh ... Read More
This cruise was chosen because of an interest in the history of the Netherlands and Belgium and the tulips. In advance of the cruise, I spent three days in Amsterdam where I explored the city, visited the Anne Frank House and the Van Gogh Museum. I met the AmaStella at the pier in Amsterdam. Everything was perfect onboard ship and with the excursions planned for the journey. The staff/crew on the ship were amazing and attentive to all needs and foresaw the desires of all onboard. The cruise director was visible and accessible at all times. He made everyone feel like a family member and made sure that everyone was informed and looked after. The ship was beautiful, clean and functional. The bed and bedding were so comfortable that it was difficult to leave it the mornings. The food was excellent and the dining room service was outstanding with attention to every detail. The evening activities were perfectly suited for the journey and the guests onboard. There is absolutely nothing that I would have changed about this adventure. I would go again in a flash. The cruise line also initiated an app for this cruise which allowed us to follow our route and check information about each port. Further, we were able to add our pictures to this app and then share them with family and friends while we travelled. Read Less
Sail Date: March 2019
This was our first river cruise. We will definitely do it again, and based on this experience AMA will be our first choice. Everyone on this ship went out of their way to be friendly and helpful, from the captain to the cruise and ... Read More
This was our first river cruise. We will definitely do it again, and based on this experience AMA will be our first choice. Everyone on this ship went out of their way to be friendly and helpful, from the captain to the cruise and hospitality directors, to food service personnel, waiters and bar attendants, and to housekeeping staff. Food was excellent, particularly the Chef’s table which was served with pride by the chef and his staff in the special eating area at the ships stern as we happily took in the (sunny) view of the picturesque waterways. Activities were well organized and interesting with enthusiastic local guides. Was particularly impressed with the cruise director who proved to be a great entertainer while bringing us all up to date on upcoming events and schedule. He seemed to always be there to interact with guests or solve problems. Amazing how he also made challenges of scheduling of supporting transport and guides invisible to ship guests. Appreciated the security of on board entry and the concerns of local guides to always have the right number in the group or safely avoiding the crazy Dutch cyclists and cars. Entertainment highlight was a classical trio who were fantastic. Other entertainers were comfortably appropriate for guest demographics. Judging by the age of cruise guests, this cruise was most frequented by 55+ folk. Often they retreated to cabins after dinner. Despite fitness leader, not a big draw except for small number who usually took more active cycle tours. There were a few kids on this cruise but with much walking and historical focus, probably not best for kids. I have written reviews for trip advisor on several occasions but have never had the opportunity to be so positive about a trip experience. Keep it up AMA, we’re looking to do this again next year! A final word on the weather. It was cold and damp for early April so bring warm clothes and rain gear. Fortunately only one day was rainy but our umbrellas saved the day. Despite the weather Keukenhof was beautiful, as was the Florillia flower show that AMA arranged access to before the show opened a few days later. Btw, when in Bruges, make sure to get your chocolates from Dumont’s. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2018
We wanted to see the Christmas markets in Germany and were not disappointed. The staff aboard the AmaStella were outstanding, from cruise director Sonja Lodewijkx to our "personal" waiter, Dragos, and I say personal because ... Read More
We wanted to see the Christmas markets in Germany and were not disappointed. The staff aboard the AmaStella were outstanding, from cruise director Sonja Lodewijkx to our "personal" waiter, Dragos, and I say personal because that's the way he treated us, was just excellent. With the incident that occurred in Strasbourg, captain Rene decided to move the ship from the French side to the German side for the safety of everyone. Cruise director Sonja did an excellent job of find new excursions for the entire ship and did so with very little time, considering the circumstances. Thank to you all the staff aboard the AmaStella for ensuring the safety of it's passengers. The Christmas party on the next to last evening was fantastic. It was so much fun, no one wanted it to stop. Each meal was a culinary delight but I blame head chef Tomi for making me buy larger waist pants. All in all, and excellent experience. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2018
As experienced ocean cruisers we had been curious about river cruising for sometime. Since this year was our 35th wedding anniversary that seemed to be a good excuse and we decided to take the plunge. We did pre and post cruise on our ... Read More
As experienced ocean cruisers we had been curious about river cruising for sometime. Since this year was our 35th wedding anniversary that seemed to be a good excuse and we decided to take the plunge. We did pre and post cruise on our own-our fabulous travel agent set some great things up for us. We sailed from Basel to Amsterdam to enjoy the Christmas markets and the Rhine gorge. We were blessed in that, after a period of prolonged drought in Europe it Rained and rained and rained and the Rhine rose. Our cruise was the first northbound cruise in 12 weeks with out busing or ship swaps. Embarkation was so easy-an AMA baggage handler took our bags from the taxi and we saw them again at the room. Check in took a couple of minutes-no line-and we were good to go. Explored the ship, got the lay of things and then checked out our room. We had opted for a fixed window room since I didn't think that having a balcony in Germany in the winter was a huge need. It was a good choice but a lesson learned-the fixed window rooms lie below the water line and you can be subject to some noise in locks and when passing other ships on the river. Next time I will get a French Balcony room. The room was small but efficiently designed and once were unpacked and had the luggage stowed away it worked just fine for us. The food was fabulous at every meal. Between the wonderful food in the markets and the wonderful food on board it is a very good thing we opted for active tours with lots of walking! I loved the regional wines poured in unlimited quantities at dinner. It gave one a great opportunity to learn about different wines from that area. The Chefs Table is a do not miss experience as well. We enjoyed all of the tours we went on as well. There were even a couple of things that I had thought we would skip that we wound up doing at the last minute that turned out to be fabulous. Evening entertainment especially the classical music group on the last night was wonderful. Our one, no so much complaint because we understood it, but disappointment is that we would have like longer to spend in some of the places we visited. Cruising the Rhine gorge was part of the reason we choose this cruise and it did not disappoint. Huge kudos to AMA and our marvelous Cruise Director Sonja for handling a difficult and scary situation with aplomb. On Tuesday December 11th we had docked at Strasbourg around 8 in the evening. Shortly after that a shooting occurred in the main Christmas Market that left 3 dead and 13 wounded. While we enjoyed our Christmas tree decorating Sonja and the LA office were making decisions on how to handle the situation. We woke up on the 12th docked across the river in Kehl. Sonja apologized for our missing Strasbourg but due to the traffic and activity of the French anti terror police it had been determined that we should not go there-so we went instead to Baden-Baden which was wonderful. I was sorry to miss the Strasbourg catherdral but not sorry to miss dealing with the French police. Service was outstanding-Patricia in the dining room, Marina our cabin steward, the bar staff and of course Sonja and her staff delivered an amazing experience, right down to Sonja arranging a taxi to our privately booked hotel in Amsterdam. Overall a first class experience far and above what we have had on any ocean cruise line. We will be cruising with AMA again in the future. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2018
Due to insufficient water, cruise operator purposely misleading and not informing us of the conditions, I would not recommend this company! We have enjoyed 25 luxury cruises and never had this experience. It turned out to one big bus ride ... Read More
Due to insufficient water, cruise operator purposely misleading and not informing us of the conditions, I would not recommend this company! We have enjoyed 25 luxury cruises and never had this experience. It turned out to one big bus ride through Europe. We were in Switzerland when they notified us by email that there might not be sufficient water in the river. We were not given any options. We subsequently found out that they had this problem for over a month. Even upon boarding the ship they continued to mislead us. Ultimately, they bused us through three countries to another ship, the AmaKristina. We never saw the charming towns or castles that were part of the cruise. Most of the ports and excursions that we were scheduled for never materialized. Dining was difficult because there is insufficient seating capacity for the number of passengers. The captain refused to allow us to sit at his table when we could not find seats. In fact, he was quite rude. We did not bother to unpack our suitcases as we were going to be bused to another ship. The cabin was extremely crowded as a result. Entertainment is mostly non existent. The crew works hard but that can not compensate the amount of money we spent for deceptive business practices engaged by the company. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: November 2018
By the time my husband and I thought of a river cruise for a wedding anniversary we already had enough of ocean liners gigantomania and clearly knew each drawback of a sea voyage. Though, we find it very exciting to see different places at ... Read More
By the time my husband and I thought of a river cruise for a wedding anniversary we already had enough of ocean liners gigantomania and clearly knew each drawback of a sea voyage. Though, we find it very exciting to see different places at one go - that’s a huge advantage of any water travel. Applying value for money approach to the desired dates (12.11-19.11) and destination (Basel-Amsterdam) we made our choice - Amawaterways. The ship meant to carry us along the route was AmaStella, if not the low water level on the Rhine, due to which we later moved to AmaKristina. Getting ready for our maiden river voyage was full of doubt - will a small ship be comfortable enough? shall we need to share a table with some fellow passengers during meals? what if we in our early 40s feel a bit too young for such cruise? In fact, there were dozens of people younger than we, including passengers and staff members - thus, we are not too young. Never we had to share a table with anybody else. Surprisingly, I had much more private space onboard AmaWaterways ships than I ever had on any ocean cruise liner, - needless to say that sun deck in November is a paradise for misanthropes.) Food onboard Amawaterways was of rather good 4* quality. I cannot share negative opinions - with rare exceptions it was perfectly acceptable. I wonder how can one expect to have a truly high-end cuisine onboard a cruise ship, if presumably all fish and meats are defrosted? We did not seek Michelin stars experience and were completely satisfied. Dress code issue. Misled by the popular messages about the very casual style of clothing on river cruises, I witnessed quite the contrary. Many passengers elegantly dressed up for dinner. Compared to them we personally felt a bit underdressed. Obviously, this is a wrong place for a floor length evening gown. But I do recommend to bring with you some semi-formal pieces to be well dressed. And, a pair of high heels;-) Our stateroom (309 on both ships) with French and outside balcony is very rationally designed, very clean and comfortable, even though it doesn’t have much space. All public places are also very well maintained. In general, with regard to the small size of the ship onboard living conditions and facilities are perfect. And a few words about the “relocation”. When you get to know your cruise will go wrong... you feel frustrated. But later on you accept it - what else can you do? And when you arrive there appears the most thrilling thing - you do not know what exactly is going to happen to you just in a few days - it really enhances the sense of adventure, doesn’t it? They say: “Every problem has a gift in its hand”. The one for us was Luxembourg! We for sure would not go there, unless it was right on the relocation way. And it was a short but truly great impression, rated #2 on the whole trip. An extra surprise was to see Kristin Кarst on our bus - she herself expressed apologies for itinerary changes before we moved on to Antwerp - honourable. Busing? Well, it was inevitable... Probably tiresome for the elderly people, but for us - not at all. On the contrary, the scenic ride through Belgian pastoral countryside on a strikingly beautiful day was nothing but fabulous. In Antwerp there was the other ship, AmaKristina. Even though it is a bit newer copy of AmaStella, I still found the latter one more appealing. The team? May be. A prototypical what-he-should-look captain, a highly hospitable hotel manager, very attentive head waiter, excellent barman, as well as the rest of the staff - they all deserve special thanks. Which certainly does not diminish the value of AmaKristina’s team - they too did a great job! Pau, the cruise manager, such a nice guy - easy going, smart and tolerant - accompanied both parts of the cruise and left the best impression possible. The only thing our cruise seriously lacked was, of course, daytime sailing! This is the main reason to choose river cruise for. Taking a look at the Enchanting Rhine cruise map we clearly see how little we have sailed - hardly a third part of the route length. Was it really a cruise? Rather a very good travel... Well, AmaWaterways could treat the issue as a force majeure and bypass any responsibility. Instead they have voluntarily offered a generous compensation - a big discount for a future cruise which I can’t help but already dream about. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2018
Sailed with AMA before, loved it! Their attention to detail is superb. This time we experienced a drought that altered our course and experience. AMA took us to 2 extra countries not on our original itinerary, made everything pleasant and ... Read More
Sailed with AMA before, loved it! Their attention to detail is superb. This time we experienced a drought that altered our course and experience. AMA took us to 2 extra countries not on our original itinerary, made everything pleasant and seamless, remained positive and upbeat, and gave us a 100% credit for a future cruise of our choosing! We were on two ships, identical accommodations. Cabins great, ships great, dining excellent, service great, entertainment and activities great, excursions fabulous, staff attentive and wonderful, embarkation, disembarkation and ship transfer went smoothly and perfectly! AMA is an outstanding company, a class act, and I will most certainly travel with them again! They outperform all of the others and are far superior! The Captain gives each lady a rose upon arrival, and by the time you get back from dinner, the rose is in a vase. The crew knows your food likes and dislikes, allergies, and every detail to make you feel comfortable. They make special occasions unforgettable and treat you with the utmost respect! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
We chose this cruise as a group cruise to see the sites of the Rhine River (and Castles of course). We departed Central Florida Friday evening on a non-stop flight to Amsterdam arriving Saturday morning. After checking into Hotel ... Read More
We chose this cruise as a group cruise to see the sites of the Rhine River (and Castles of course). We departed Central Florida Friday evening on a non-stop flight to Amsterdam arriving Saturday morning. After checking into Hotel Estherea, we all went out exploring the city. On Sunday we had arranged for a private tour that took us outside of the city. We visited Marken and Edam and toured through the Beemster polder, a UNESCO heritage site and visited the collection of old water pumping windmills in Schermerhorn. On Monday, prior to going to the ship, many of our toured the Anne Frank House while others went to the Riksmuseum. We all arrived at the AmaStella at different times but, regardless of time of arrival, embarkation was a breeze. Our bags were taken as we arrived at the ship and the next time we saw them was when we went to our room. We chose a CA French Balcony cabin feeling that we may not get as much use from a true balcony as we would on ocean cruises. This worked out fine for us. The rooms aren't large but, once we were unpacked and organized, it was very manageable. We were actually surprised to see that the sliding window opens the whole width of the room. We had thought it would only be half, so that was a nice surprise. Dining was superb. Actually, there is always something to eat. Breakfast and lunch had a buffet section as well as items you could order from the menu. We ate at the Chef's Table one evening and that was amazing (too much food for me however). Service was amazing in all areas. It was fascinating to me to be on the top deck watching one of the stewards cleaning and polishing every bit of the railings and flooring. I was impressed. We did excursions in every port. That would be my only criticism of this cruise. For the walking tours they have "gentle", "regular", and "active" paced tours. We chose regular for the first three. The first one was perfect but by the third tour, we felt they were going much too slow - too much standing around talking. So in Strasbourg we chose the "active" tour and it turned out to be too active - no time to stop and take a picture or two. I think they could find a better balance, but this would in no way stop me from going again. We continued with AmaWaterways for the 4 night land extension in Switzerland. I was surprised to learn that our cruise manager (the fabulous Sonja) would be staying with us for the remainder of the trip. This part of the trip was also done very, very well. I think the group was very impressed and had a fantastic time. Next time we will do the Danube or the Douro. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2018
The staff are what makes this cruise so incredible. Getting home for dinner each night to the same lovely waiters, who made an amazing effort to entertain the children we had in our group, made every mealtime an event. Special mention to ... Read More
The staff are what makes this cruise so incredible. Getting home for dinner each night to the same lovely waiters, who made an amazing effort to entertain the children we had in our group, made every mealtime an event. Special mention to Ogi, Milos (Mr Vanilla), Ivo and Andre, for whom nothing was too much trouble and who went above and beyond to make sure our dining experience was amazing. They are an asset to your organisation. This cruise company is perfect for a family with different interests and different fitness levels. Each day there was the option of an "Easy Walkers" walking tour or a "Active Walkers" tour, and also just a "Regular Walkers" tour. The tour options were all amazing and made you really become immersed in the local areas. Cruise Manager Rolf made the tour presentations so entertaining and made choosing daily activities so simple. The extra onboard entertainment such as Hungarian Dancing and a Classical Concert, were an added extra we didn't expect. A truly exceptional cruise experience. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2018
The ship and crew I can’t say enough good things. EXCELLENT personal service 24/7. Took the cruise from Amsterdam to Basel. Simply amazing. The cabin was a 10 plus with plenty of room and George my housekeeper was excellent.Food was ... Read More
The ship and crew I can’t say enough good things. EXCELLENT personal service 24/7. Took the cruise from Amsterdam to Basel. Simply amazing. The cabin was a 10 plus with plenty of room and George my housekeeper was excellent.Food was spectacular. When I cruise again in Europe this truely will be my only choice. All the shore excursions were handled correctly, on time, and very interesting. The details they took were great. Reception and housekeeping remembered my name. Waiters remembered what I drank and what I wanted. There was great entertainment with a violins one night and disco the next. So a wide variety. One night they have a Chefs table where 15 or so partake in a special meal put on by a special chef in a separate room. It’s a 5 course meal you won’t forget. Everything, even the desserts are made fresh each day.Thank you Crew and especially Marcia the cruise director. She was so kind and accommodating for everyone.... Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2018
I ‘d never been on a river cruise, but our travel agent steered us towards AMA Waterways because of their excellent reputation. She was absolutely right! We had a wonderful time during our precruise in Zurich and the time on the actual ... Read More
I ‘d never been on a river cruise, but our travel agent steered us towards AMA Waterways because of their excellent reputation. She was absolutely right! We had a wonderful time during our precruise in Zurich and the time on the actual cruise exceeded our expectations! Nicki Drinkwater, the cruise director, and crew didn’t miss a detail. The excursions were delightful and geared to however you were able to navigate, whether you were an active person, in the middle, or a snail. Some days I was a snail and some days in the middle! They even had late riser ones! (I confess to,doing that one day) Embarcation wa easy, as was disembarkation and very organized. We were greeted warmly and even had a group saying goodbye at the departing bus even though there were only 6 of us at that early hour. The ship was beautiful and clean. The cabin was spacious and kept in immaculate condition by our steward, George. Dining was superb with lots of delicious choices. The Chef’s Table(included in your price for the cruise) was a special treat, but the dining in the dining room was lovely,too. Wine and soft drinks were also included in your meal.Breakfast was quick with a buffet or you could have all kinds of things cooked especially for you. The singer on board and the special groups brought in were lots of fun and very talented. There were a few children on board and they seemed to be having a grand time, but there were no special children activities. The local tour guides were excellent, easy to understand and didn’t mind a million questions! I plan to sail with AMA Waterways again in the very near future, probably on the Danube or the Frech one that includes Normandy. I hated to leave and made many nice friends that I plan to connect with at a later date. Also, all crew, and I mean all, were cheerful, helpful, fun, and went out of their way to accommodate whatever was needed. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: March 2018
My wife and myself chose this cruise for our golden wedding anniversary celebrations. A bonus was that it was a wine theme cruise. The crew/staff are amazing. You feel totally pampered. The evening meals were just superb with accompanying ... Read More
My wife and myself chose this cruise for our golden wedding anniversary celebrations. A bonus was that it was a wine theme cruise. The crew/staff are amazing. You feel totally pampered. The evening meals were just superb with accompanying wines. The lunchtimes and breakfasts gave you a very good choice which offered both a buffet style as well as a table waiting system.The stateroom on Cello deck was on the small side but very well equipped. The whole week we were aboard sadly just rushed by. We took part in a few of the land excursions and was well planned allowing the facility of us slower walking people the opportunity not to feel hurried. Your luggage on embarkation and leaving the ship was very well organised and there was a lot of assistance for those who required it. Taxis and coaches to take you to your next destination all appeared on time. Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2017
AmaWaterways was our second choice when we discovered Viking had booked up this particular Danube Cruise. Our experience up to this point has been 2 ocean cruises on Viking and both experiences were 5 star. We were not sure we would even ... Read More
AmaWaterways was our second choice when we discovered Viking had booked up this particular Danube Cruise. Our experience up to this point has been 2 ocean cruises on Viking and both experiences were 5 star. We were not sure we would even like a river cruise much less go with a cruise line we had never heard of before. Our adventure on AmaStella was above and beyond our expectations! River cruising is definitely a different experience than ocean. Our ocean cruise carried approx. 800 and I believe our river cruise had somewhere around 135. That in itself changes every aspect. I cannot say that i even prefer one to the other...now I know they are each simply unique. Also unique to this particular cruise is the atmosphere on ship. The entire ship is decorated for Christmas - so lovely, sparkling and festive. One night we even helped decorate some of the trees that only had the lights trimmed. The crew provided us with entertainment one evening by "caroling". Absolutely hysterical !!!! And of course the emphasis of the excursions was on the Christmas markets in each port. Excursions: Cannot say enough about quality of tour guides, tour buses used, itinerary, etc. Again, this cruise had a special theme so no doubt excursions in the same towns and cities another time of the year are going to differ. AmaWaterways provides an incredible choice of INCLUDED excursions - high quality ones in fact. Sometimes there was one offered for those who just wanted to visit the Christmas Market and perhaps drive through the town seeing points of interest, while offered at the same port was an excursion that included walking and exploring interiors of points of interest and adding the market at the end. In Passau, there were several of included choices, one of which a 2 hour ride into Salzburg and the opportunity to spend approximately 5 hours exploring Salzburg either independently or with a guide and then the return to the ship through the gorgeous snow covered mountains to Linz where the ship had sailed while we were in Salzburg. That excursion was a no-charge. Amazing. A wonderful aspect of Ama excursions is that for almost every one, they provided an option for 2-3 levels of "walkers"...gentle, normal, active. Each level was given their own guide. Again, we found this to be ever so accommodating. Cabin: We had a room with a balcony and french balcony and it was fairly roomy. Even though we rarely used the balcony due to weather, it did provide us with more space in the actual room. Be aware that there is not a lot of useable space underneath the bed for storing actual suitcases that are very deep. Fabulous that they provide a TV that is also a computer with a keyboard. You can pull up your boarding passes for your flight home and it will print directly to the Cruise Director's printer. Same thing for tickets to concerts or whatever extra you might have booked separate from what Ama was offering. Bathroom is decent size and very bright and "new". Beds were comfortable enough. We were well taken care of by the sweet young man in charge of our room - he anticipated our every need. Dining: I rarely eat breakfast but when I was ready mid morning, I could grab a cappuccino from the machine (love!!) and a pastry from the restaurant buffet. We were rarely on the ship during lunch. Dinner was always very good but the best meal we had onboard was definitely at the Chef's Table. And just a tip: one meal at Chef's Table is included, however if you check, there most likely will be another night that they are not booked and you can enjoy a second meal there. Worth checking on! This is the only area that i prefer the ocean over the river cruise. Some nights, we were looking forward to spending at a table with others (no tables for 2) getting to know them and having a very social dinner but most nights we were tired from the day's excursions and would have preferred being able to go to dinner when we wanted, self serve a few items from a buffet, sit just the two of us and spend much less than 2 hours on dinner. That's just a personal preference and it was obvious that most other cruisers wholeheartedly embraced the "dinner experience". We are not wine drinkers so that may be some of the lure and enjoyment for some at dinner and would cause them to want to linger. Just not for us. The Ama Cruise Director for our ship was John Riley and we cannot even come up with words worthy enough to describe this man. How he does it...we just cannot fathom. His attention to detail and organization is just short of being physically and mentally impossible. He lacks in absolutely nothing (unless it's sleep)!! We are certain that our delightful experience on AmaStella can be attributed to his talents and his ability to inspire those who are working with him. He spoils you. Our plane out of Budapest did not depart until 2:00 in the afternoon yet we needed to be out of our cabin by 9:00. We were so warmly encouraged and welcomed to stay in the lounge of the ship by John until we needed to get to the airport. Despite the crew trying to get ready for the next batch of cruisers who were set to arrive at any time, again we were urged to stay onboard and partake of the food being set out for the new group and remain comfortable until it was time to leave. Oh and one most lovely thing...those who were needing taxi service to the airport that day...John personally arranged for a taxi driver to appear at the dock for every single cruiser that needed it and for every single time they needed to depart. We all waited in the lounge and he would announce when each of our taxis had arrived, we would walk off and there were our bags being loaded by the driver. We were the next to the last couple to leave the ship and the entire time we were made to feel more than welcome. So from start to finish this was a lovely, very special experience for us. Will we do it again with AmaWaterways? Absolutely!! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: October 2017
Since Viking has an excellent marketing effort, we were introduced to the idea of a River Cruise while watching Downton Abbey! However, our longtime travel agent advised that AMA Waterways was a cut above Viking. After attending an AMA ... Read More
Since Viking has an excellent marketing effort, we were introduced to the idea of a River Cruise while watching Downton Abbey! However, our longtime travel agent advised that AMA Waterways was a cut above Viking. After attending an AMA presentation, we were sold and selected the Romantic Danube River Cruise, including 3 days in Prague. Our travel agent was right! We loved the AMA experience Their agent was right there at the airport on time. The Intercontinental Hotel in Prague was very nice and perfect for getting into Old Town easily. Our Cruise Director, Maddy, was at a table at the hotel and was also in charge during the cruise. We cannot say enough good things about Maddy Calaruse. Friendly, knowledgeable, anticipatory of our needs. For example, when we were in Budapest, searching in our wallets for Hungarian money to use the bathroom, all of a sudden, she popped up out of nowhere and gave us the money. Like a Bathroom Fairy Godmother. She remembered our names immediately and would curtsy when she saw us because we are "Kings." Gave us good advice on what to do, where to go, etc. An outstanding employee of AMA. We also had dinner at Captain's table one night. He was very good and answered all of my questions with good humor and knowledge. My husband loved Budapest the best, I think my favs were Prague and Salzburg. All places lovely. I told the Captain that one "complaint" was that the marketing material showcased more picturesque towns along the River than we saw as we were cruising. He acknowledged that Linz and Passau didn't really offer this and perhaps they could modify this a bit. The Danube is the Danube so if I were them, I'd highlight Prague, Salzburg, and Budapest to manage expectations. I'm guessing some of those marketing pics are from the Rhine. Budapest at night is magnificent!! I'm glad I got to see that in my lifetime. Awesome clear night for viewing. The cabin rooms are very small. So glad we upgraded to the balcony and had a little more space! I expected the small rooms but wow. We learned how to negotiate around that pretty well though and by the end, it really wasn't an issue. Food was uniformly good. The Chef's Table one night was a cut above that. Service was usually good but occasionally we got a "that's not my table" attitude. But overall, service excellent. The receptionist was particularly good and it appears the employees are conditioned to say "yes." I liked that. For example, my husband had injured his neck before the cruise (2herniated discs) so I asked if we could keep a combination walking stick/seat from the reception area for the duration of the cruise so my husband could use it. Big smile and "of course!" The "gentle walking" tours for the "halt and the lame" were outstanding and, I think, saved the cruise for my husband. We saw everything we needed to see at either a gentle pace or in a little train or little bus. Separate knowledgeable tour guides even for these fairly small groups. It made a significant difference. Highly recommend AMA and River Cruises. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: September 2017
I was looking for a trip that everything was taken care of and we found it with AmaStella. Top level of service, food and entertainment. Every crew member was so welcoming and fun. I had some health issues last year and was concerned ... Read More
I was looking for a trip that everything was taken care of and we found it with AmaStella. Top level of service, food and entertainment. Every crew member was so welcoming and fun. I had some health issues last year and was concerned about the shore excursions, but quickly discovered that there were three levels to choose from and I was able to take the regular pace. Slower pace was available and more active pace for those who wished a higher activity level. The ship was beautiful and the meals outstanding. I especially liked that seating was not assigned for meals. This gave us a chance to meet and learn about many of our fellow travelers (148 passengers was a great size). Our cabin was very comfortable with everything you could need. The attention to detail was amazing. We had an issue with printing our boarding pass for our returning connecting flight in Amsterdam and the Cruise Manager was very helpful. It seems something triggered a VISA requirement on line before we could get back to the States. Reka assured us that as we were US citizens, a VISA wasn't necessary. She arranged to have a guide stay with us at the airport in Munich until we were assured the matter was corrected. Needless, as it was our first trip to Europe, it was great to be looked after personally. We highly recommend AMA Waterways. Read Less
Sail Date: September 2017
always wanted to try a cruise but not a sea cruise love my sailing and as it was my 60th birthday the wife decided to treat me to this wonderful meander and romantic cruise along the Danube . Wow i really don't know what to say ... Read More
always wanted to try a cruise but not a sea cruise love my sailing and as it was my 60th birthday the wife decided to treat me to this wonderful meander and romantic cruise along the Danube . Wow i really don't know what to say Im sorry i haven't written this sooner but on returning we had very sad news and this went right out of my head until i found the note from Monika. Today. The whole trip from start to finish was very professional well executed , the staff fantastic accommodation superb very tidy and the excursions entertainment were first class.. and trust me im extremely critical.. The only complaint i would have is that there wasn't enough downtime perhaps have an extra day in a port someone for a rest ... and break the journey up ..but that's it I would definitely go again but next time perhaps Cambodia or down the Mississippi on a paddle steamer but would have no qualms in highly recommending this trip. I'm glad no children. Our trip was in September 2017 Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2017
The main disappointment on this first time riverboat was the service by waiters and wine sommeliers. This does not mean that on the AmaStella staff was not excellent and hard working, but I felt there were not enough personnel to serve us ... Read More
The main disappointment on this first time riverboat was the service by waiters and wine sommeliers. This does not mean that on the AmaStella staff was not excellent and hard working, but I felt there were not enough personnel to serve us without being rushed or waiting for wine at dinner. It was not the experience expected for wine service since they only had to two serve 2 types of wine and beer. The ratio of personnel to guest on this boat is approximately 0.5 to 1. I inquired with Viking, and their ratio is it closer to 1.5 to 1. It is also more favorable to sail down stream instead of up stream. Boat noise interrupted sleep at least three nights, and it is important that you select a cabin away from the engine noise and vibrations. I would not recommend AMA Waterways. I think they are cutting corners to save money. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2017
We chose the cruise based on the itinerary and our schedule, and spent three days in Budapest before it began. Our ONLY serious criticism is the utterly incompetent online customer service, which after three tries finally directed us to ... Read More
We chose the cruise based on the itinerary and our schedule, and spent three days in Budapest before it began. Our ONLY serious criticism is the utterly incompetent online customer service, which after three tries finally directed us to the wrong docking location. Accessing WiFi was also unecessarily difficult. Disembarkation was very well organized, without the usual nonsense of wanting bags put out in the middle of the night. Our first, and lasting, impression of the ship was that it was absolutely immaculate from stem to stern. We've cruised several times and never seen such sparkling cleanliness. The food was very good (and accompanied by freshly baked bread), and very inventively presented, the complimentary wines generally very good, and the service very good too. The ports and shore excursions were well-planned, the guides competent, but could have been a bit longer in some case (actually visiting some of the attractions as opposed to fly-bys. All-in-all, we were very pleased with the cruise itself and based on our experience, would recommend the company. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2017
The AMAStella was beautiful...a first rate operation. Embarkation and disembarkation went effortlessly. Excursions were terrific with well informed entertaining guides. There are different "pace" levels making it easy, ... Read More
The AMAStella was beautiful...a first rate operation. Embarkation and disembarkation went effortlessly. Excursions were terrific with well informed entertaining guides. There are different "pace" levels making it easy, especially for the "gentle walkers" to keep up with the tours. The cruise director, Csaba, was always available and bent over backwards to help in any way possible. He is delightful, charming, knowledgeable and has a great sense of humor. Captain Korvemaker, only 28 years old, is so competent and extremely personable as is the ship's hotel manager Attila. The three of them work together like a well oiled machine. The wait staff and housekeeping couldn't do enough to make the experience memorable. They were respectful, courteous, warm and just plain fun. The entertainment enjoyable and the food good...not exceptional as was everything else. The intimacy of river cruising is different from a large cruise ship. I highly recommend AMA Waterways . Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2017
The cruise destinations fit our schedule, and the price was right. The Amastella is a new ship, really clean, even the engine room which I toured. Good activities at all ports of call, everything from hard core biking to gentle walks. ... Read More
The cruise destinations fit our schedule, and the price was right. The Amastella is a new ship, really clean, even the engine room which I toured. Good activities at all ports of call, everything from hard core biking to gentle walks. 30% did the strenuous hikes, 30% did the gentle walks, and the rest did something in between or stayed on board. The food was good, with complimentary drinks offered at lunch and dinner. The crew were vey attentive, always filling your plate or glass. Everyone on the crew was approachable, from the captain, cruise director, bar staff, and room attendants. The pool on the upper deck with a swim-up bar was a nice touch that you don't see on many other vessels. Favorite ports were Vienna, Brattisava and the Budapest Illumination tour. Transiting all the locks was interesting, but maybe doesn't compare to the Panama Canal I would do another cruise, just need to find a destination. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2017
It was our 40th. wedding anniversary and we wanted to celebrate with a memorable trip and AMAWaterways did not disappoint! Our ship, the Amastella, was a floating boutique hotel, with every imaginable ammenity; an outstanding crew and ... Read More
It was our 40th. wedding anniversary and we wanted to celebrate with a memorable trip and AMAWaterways did not disappoint! Our ship, the Amastella, was a floating boutique hotel, with every imaginable ammenity; an outstanding crew and beautiful ambiance. The guest rooms are very comfortable and well appointed; we had an outside balcony that we enjoyed every night, while sipping a glass of wine and watching the sights along the Danube glide past. The daily shore excursions were great. We had terrific guides through each city or town that we visited and lots of fun at the folk festivals and beer gardens along the trip. The onboard amenities are topnotch, along with the staff. Our meals were sumptuous and plentiful, as my scales have shown, since our return home! Our cruise director, Kris was terrific. She seemed to be able to clone herself, because she was everywhere at once! We didn't hear a single word of complaint, other than "it's over, already!" We are already researching our next river cruise destination! Read Less
Sail Date: May 2017
We went through a cruise club to book The Danube River vacation and had a fabulous experience. The ship was clean, comfortable and easy to navigate. Food was exquisite along with presentation. Entertainment, activities and excursions were ... Read More
We went through a cruise club to book The Danube River vacation and had a fabulous experience. The ship was clean, comfortable and easy to navigate. Food was exquisite along with presentation. Entertainment, activities and excursions were fun and enjoyable. Service on the ship went beyond my expectations. The room and bedding were comfortable.Everyone on board the ship from the Captain, to Cruise Manager, Hotel Manager, Bartenders, Waitstaff and Crew members went out of their way to make sure our needs were met. The scenery on the river cruise was gorgeous. All excursions were with a tour guide and I felt safe everywhere we ventured. There were bikes available, and if you were more active, hiking and active walking tours. I felt pampered and spoiled on the ship by the staff and would definitely use Ama Waterways again. After my first river cruise, I may have to book another one. Read Less
AmaStella Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 5.0 4.5
Dining 5.0 4.7
Entertainment 3.5 4.1
Public Rooms 5.0 4.9
Fitness Recreation 4.0 4.1
Family 3.0 4.1
Shore Excursion 5.0 4.8
Enrichment 5.0 4.6
Service 5.0 4.8
Value For Money 5.0 4.7

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