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AmaLea (Adventures By Disney) Review

AmaLea (Photo: AmaWaterways)
AmaLea (Photo: AmaWaterways)
4.5 / 5.0
Cruise Critic Editor Rating
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Cynthia Drake
Cruise Critic Contributor

AmaLea (Adventures By Disney) Overview

AmaWaterways' partnership with Adventures by Disney, hosting family-friendly European river cruises throughout the year, transforms the sophisticated AmaLea into a relaxed, casual day-trip launchpad where even the youngest passengers are celebrated.

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About AmaLea (Adventures By Disney)


Pro

Nearly everything is included with your cruise

Con

Occasional stumbles on food, where menu items didn't live up to expectations

Bottom Line

Ship delivers a special, fully customized family-style European experience

A newer ship with iPad-controlled stateroom lighting and temperature controls, AmaLea still feels classic and understated in its design, showcasing the beauty of Europe in the plentiful common areas, where passengers seem welcome to pull up a chair (inside or outside), get to know each other and relax.

Nearly everything is included in the cost of your Adventures by Disney cruise, from daily shore excursions, bicycle rentals, food, wine and beer during meals plus a daily featured cocktail, Wi-Fi and gratuities. You won't be socked with a huge bill at the end of your vacation.

Adventures by Disney programming is woven throughout your cruise, offering shore excursions and evening entertainment geared toward all ages, and powered by a staff of Adventure Guides that not only hosts all the excursions and activities but also gets to know many of the passengers by name. Though you won't catch any Disney character sightings, the exemplary service that Disney is known for shines through. The outcome is that Europe becomes more approachable -- particularly for families -- under the cheerful guidance of these guides.

These cruises are ideal for families with older kids (tweens and teens) who are willing to try new foods and experiences and meet new people. Families with younger children or anyone who would struggle with the fast pace of multiple daily shore excursions might find this type of cruise more challenging.

Fellow Passengers

On an Adventures by Disney cruise on AmaLea, most of the passengers are from the United States or Canada, with many families and more than a few die-hard Disneyphiles. Kids are welcome to join the adventure -- 4 years old is the minimum age, with a recommended minimum age of 8 years old. On our cruise, there were several tweens and teens, who had a grand time making new friends and exploring Europe together. Not traveling with kids? You won't be alone. Several couples also joined the cruise, and Adventures by Disney offers select "adult exclusive" itineraries, as well.


AmaLea (Adventures By Disney) Dress Code

Daytime: Reflecting the casual vibe of an Adventures by Disney cruise, passengers opt for comfortable clothing during the day, including jeans, shorts, T-shirts and sweatshirts, depending on the climate. Many chose to wear Disney-themed outfits, with one woman even donning a Minnie-inspired dress one day and another gentleman always wearing a coordinating Disney shirt and suspenders. Layers are always recommended, as well as rain attire, as forecasts often vary. Passengers should bring walking shoes, including closed-toed shoes for some of the excursion options where they are mandatory. Umbrellas are available for passenger use and stored in each stateroom closet.

Evening: Suggested dinner attire is smart-casual, meaning slacks and button-down shirts for men and sundresses or slacks and nice tops for women. Dressy attire was not suggested, but passengers saved their best outfits for dinner at the Chef's Table, which all passengers can dine at once per cruise. Here, some men opted for jackets.

Not permitted: Swimsuits are not permitted in the Lounge or Dining Room, and passengers may not be barefoot in any of the ship's public areas, except for the pool.

AmaLea Inclusions

Included with your cruise fare:

  • All meals (lunches included on full-day excursions)
  • Selection of beer and wine with lunch and dinner
  • Drinks at Sip & Sail happy hour
  • Gratuities
  • All shore excursions
  • Bottled water in cabins and shore excursions
  • Bikes for use in port
  • Wi-Fi

Not included with the cruise fare:

  • Spa services and tips
  • Laundry services
  • Premium spirits and wines, and drinks outside of mealtime and happy hour


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