The cruise boat was very clean, staff were very pleasant & helpful, food was excellent. I was surprised that almost all of the food & drink one needed was covered in the price - there was little need to spend anything extra except for drinks other than at meals & when I went on shore guided walks or excursions. I was also surprised I was able to see so much on the walks or excursions.
The downside was having a cabin on the lowest deck without any access to fresh air. Air conditioning was adequate but very drying & caused me to have to drink a lot of water throughout the nights. Global Journeys did an efficient job with bookings.
We had a fantastic river cruise from Budapest to Amsterdam. It is a great way to travel - so relaxing and somewhere different to see everyday. The staff on board Illumination were just terrific - always smiling and always so helpful. The food and wines were sooo good. We'll definitely be looking at doing other cruises with Avalon.
This was our first River Cruise and we had a really great time. From when we boarded in Budapest until we got off in Amsterdam the time seemed to fly. Every day was eventful and fun with some great included tours and also some alternative ones for which we paid extra. The Cruise director Andrejzs was extremely experienced, professional and well organised and was always available for advice and gave some great running commentaries as we travelled.
All the guides we had on our excursions were extremely knowledgeable and professional and several were also quite funny and entertaining. We had a couple of lectures onboard about Locks and the EU which were very informative and filled up some spare time while transiting. All the crew from Captain Peter down were courteous and accommodating and went out of their way to be of service. Some of the young crew members even joined us on excursions.
The food and wine was high quality and plentiful! We all put on weight! Service was excellent! The onboard entertainment was very good with several small groups coming on between stops as well as the resident pianist/singer Albert who was extremely good. Our cabin was as expected with a very nice bathroom and the housekeeping was excellent! I think that although the trip seemed relatively expensive , we jammed the maximum adventure into the time available and I am already recommending this trip to friends as a great way to travel. Some of the sights like the Wachau valley probably couldn't be seen as well any other way!
I took an Avalon cruise from Budapest to Amsterdam with my 90 yr old mother and found the Avalon service to be impecable. Everything was 5 star, the rooms, service, staff, food and excursions were all better than expected and catered very well for slower walkers. Would highly recommend.
Avalon were exceptional. Every member of staff was obliging and incredibly helpful. The ship was faultless as was the food. Excursions were well organised and punctual and our tour director was a real asset. I actually couldn't imagine another tour company surpassing this package.
As first time river cruisers we weren't sure what to expect but this was an excellent cruise experience. Easily arranged with Global Journeys and well put together by Avalon. Every day was a new adventure. Hard to pick a single highlight but medieval Rothenberg was a standout. Every meal gave variety & was excellent quality, with afternoon tea & supper just in case you were still hungry! Wine at dinner was more than enough and half price drinks at daily happy hour was good value. The staff were friendly and helpful. Kiwis were the majority on our cruise (Yeh), with others from Australia, USA, Canada & UK. We easily made friends and had a great time. Oh, I must mention the panorama suites with wide opening windows. A much more flexible alternative to a balcony and it gave more space in the room. On reflection I'm happy we cruised from Budapest to Amsterdam, although no doubt we would have enjoyed it the other way around as well. This is a cruise well worth considering.
Robert really made the trip with his dry humour and knowledge. The crew where very pleasant and helpful. Water level problems were handled without us missing out on anything, and Robert even under stress was unflappable. Felt pampered and spoilt the whole way.
This cruise exceeded expectations. We enjoyed the freedom of doing our own thing whilst appreciating the optional extras available. It suited our needs perfectly and represented excellent value for money. Everything was well organised yet casual. No timetables to observe and whilst there were plenty of included activities there were also many more optional available. We would certainly cruise with Avalon again and use Global Journeys as our booking agent.
The new Avalon ship (Impression) was a wonderful design and the staterooms were large - turned out to be bigger than our hotel rooms in Amsterdam and a number of other places. Overall the shore excursions were good - plenty of free time so you did not feel like, 'off the boat, on the bus, quick walk then back on bus to go back to the ship'. The extra excursions were also good and it was a bonus these did not have to be booked prior to travel - we could decide a couple of days prior. Food - with 4 courses it was a bit too much but awfully hard to say no when it was so good and the variety was great. All the staff on the boat were great and could not do enough for you. Overall the length of the boat cruise was good, enough time to relax, enjoy the scenery and the offshore trips, get to know others with out being too long. The booking through Global Journeys was trouble free, all questions and queries were answered promptly and clear directions for payment, extra tours etc was great. Prepaying the Gratuities was good too. Would definitely recommend this tour and Global Journeys to others and would look at doing other river cruises in the future.
Not our first trip with Avalon and if we do river cruising again will look to them first. Great trip and met all our expectations. All staff were great on board and their expertise and friendliness added to the experience. Global Journey's support from Yvonne, was again great.
I could not rate this trip on Avalon highly enough. We had a fantastic time. The cruise director was fantastic. Would have no hesitation to recommend Avalon to anyone. The boat and the facilities were excellent. We had a problem with a loch being faulty on the first day. We spent two nights off the boat in a lovely hotel in Vienna. Avalon did all they could to make that issue as less impact as possible.
From our experience on the Avalon Expression recently we could not recommend Avalon highly enough. They were magnificent. The cruise director was a class act and the food, drinks, service and accomadation was wonderful. The lengths they went to when the first loch was faulty was excellent. I do not believe that anyone on board complained of what the alternative was. Two nights is a lovely motel in Vienna was a suitable replacement.
As you will see from my ratings, I loved every minute of our river cruise and have no complaints whatsoever. In fact the tour exceeded my expectations. Would like to do another river cruise at some stage when finances allow!
It was a wonderful experience and we thoroughly enjoyed being with Avalon on the Panorama. The ship was clean and comfortable and the crew very pleasant and obliging. It was a good, restful and interesting vacation. Thank you.
Everything about the cruise was perfect with VIP treatment the whole way. The staterooms were comfortable and provided every need. The meals were a real treat and of fine restaurant quality. The crew were attentive, friendly and dedicated to ensuring you had everything you needed. Best holiday I have had in years.
The cruise was smoothly executed, obviously an outcome of thoughtful planning and accumulated experience. The Avalon Panorama was similar in layout and standard to the Viking Rurik which took us from Moscow to St Petersburg a year earlier. We did a lot of optional excursions and fully filled the cruise time, but putting one's feet up and enjoying the rivers/canals and the ship-board pampering are also enticing alternatives.