I completed this cruise a week or so ago. The cruise itself in very nice and relaxing. The stops along the river are interesting but this is so very different from one of the European sailings. You really can't explore on your own. You are assigned group color and a guide for Vietnam and a different one for Cambodia. Our guide in Vietnam, Sonny, was not good. It was almost impossible to understand him and he yelled all the time. Our guide for Cambodia, Peter, was excellent. AMA Waterways needs to vet the guides a bit better since you are stuck with the same one for several days. Get a bad one and it affects the whole experience. Huong, our Cruise Manager was fantastic. Always there to help. Very nice and genuinely wanted everyone to have a great experience. The ship itself is nice, but very different from the European ships. There are less areas to mingle and the lounge was always set up as a lecture hall rather than a place to talk to fellow guests. The food was very good and they were excellent at managing dietary restrictions. Maria, the Restaurant Manager, was really fantastic. She was always there with a smile and a good word. She also knows the dining room and menus inside and out, so any questions were answered swiftly and accurately. The food at the Chef's Table was okay, but both the meals and service were better in the main dining room. The cabin sizes are similar to the European ships but with less storage. Entertainment was a bit lacking. WiFi is terrible and is something AMA really needs to address. In addition to the cruise, I also booked the pre cruise package in Ho Chi Minh City and the post cruise packages in both Siem Reap and Hanoi. I recommend the post cruise package in Siem Reap (with Angkor Wat) wholeheartedly. It was amazing and Peter, our guide, was teriffic. The pre cruise package in Ho Chi Minh City is not worth it. You can easily see the city on our own in two days. The post cruise package for Hanoi is similarly not worth it, nor is the Ha Long Bay Cruise. I would recommend booking this privately as you will see more. Try to find a Ha Long Bay cruise that does not follow all of the other 700 boats to all the same locations. AMA Waterways continues to be an excellent company to travel with and this cruise would easily be 5 stars with some minor changes.

Lovely Cruise but avoid the Pre and Post cruise options in Vietnam

AmaDara Cruise Review by CookGirl

4 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: November 2018
  • Destination: Asia River
  • Cabin Type: Balcony Stateroom
I completed this cruise a week or so ago. The cruise itself in very nice and relaxing. The stops along the river are interesting but this is so very different from one of the European sailings. You really can't explore on your own. You are assigned group color and a guide for Vietnam and a different one for Cambodia. Our guide in Vietnam, Sonny, was not good. It was almost impossible to understand him and he yelled all the time. Our guide for Cambodia, Peter, was excellent. AMA Waterways needs to vet the guides a bit better since you are stuck with the same one for several days. Get a bad one and it affects the whole experience.

Huong, our Cruise Manager was fantastic. Always there to help. Very nice and genuinely wanted everyone to have a great experience.

The ship itself is nice, but very different from the European ships. There are less areas to mingle and the lounge was always set up as a lecture hall rather than a place to talk to fellow guests.

The food was very good and they were excellent at managing dietary restrictions. Maria, the Restaurant Manager, was really fantastic. She was always there with a smile and a good word. She also knows the dining room and menus inside and out, so any questions were answered swiftly and accurately.

The food at the Chef's Table was okay, but both the meals and service were better in the main dining room.

The cabin sizes are similar to the European ships but with less storage.

Entertainment was a bit lacking.

WiFi is terrible and is something AMA really needs to address.

In addition to the cruise, I also booked the pre cruise package in Ho Chi Minh City and the post cruise packages in both Siem Reap and Hanoi. I recommend the post cruise package in Siem Reap (with Angkor Wat) wholeheartedly. It was amazing and Peter, our guide, was teriffic. The pre cruise package in Ho Chi Minh City is not worth it. You can easily see the city on our own in two days. The post cruise package for Hanoi is similarly not worth it, nor is the Ha Long Bay Cruise. I would recommend booking this privately as you will see more. Try to find a Ha Long Bay cruise that does not follow all of the other 700 boats to all the same locations.

AMA Waterways continues to be an excellent company to travel with and this cruise would easily be 5 stars with some minor changes.
CookGirl’s Full Rating Summary
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Cabin Review

Balcony Stateroom
Cabin B 119
Good size but lacks some of the storage features of the European ships. Shower sometimes lacked hot water. Thankfully the A/C worked well.
Sadec Deck Balcony Cabins, Suite Cabins

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews