European River Cruises

Apr 25th, 2009, 03:30 AM
  #1  
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European River Cruises

We are considering a 15 day Euro river cruise Amsterdam to Budapest next northern summer. The price includes 3 meals each day, yet the brochure states there are various excursions/free time on shore etc. I expected that we would sail in the evenings, allowing daytime free for shore excursions-so would not really require any lunch onboard. Do Fodorites have any experience of these cruises & the ratio of days on board v time on shore. Whilst the cruise sounds attractive we are not ones for sitting around watching the scenery pass by-we would prefer to be sightseeing most days & are questioning whether such cruises are for us or not. Any experiences or comments from Fodorites would be welcomed.
trotsky is offline  
Apr 25th, 2009, 04:40 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: May 2006
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We took a Christmas markets river cruise from Nuremberg to Budapest (with 2 nights pre-cruise in a hotel in Prague). On our cruise the sightseeing was organized so that one could return to the ship for lunch. You are correct that most of the sailing was at night. There were, I think, two half days of cruising during the day. This was enjoyable because it gave a bit of a break from the sightseeing and going through the many locks on the Danube was interesting. This was one of my favorite trips.
takemealong is offline  
Apr 26th, 2009, 01:49 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2009
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We've done two river cruises....and were involved in tours off the boat most of the day. Unlike ocean cruising, where passengers often eat lunch or dinner off the ship, passengers generally return to the boat for lunch. If I recall correctly..... sometimes the boat sailed during lunch time. What cruise line are you considering? Our last cruise was with Peter Deilmann... which we heartily recommend. They are more expensive than other lines but we found the added expense worth it. I believe all the lines charge extra for excursions........ altho, I've seen some recent brochures where they are being offered free. (Don't know how long that will last, however.)
Gwendolynn is offline  
Apr 28th, 2009, 03:27 PM
  #4  
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Thank you Gwendolynn & takemealong for your replies. Takemealong-since posting I have found a more detailed brochure which outlines the on shore v on board ratio. There are morning or afternoon sighseeing most days, allowing lunch on board. This seems fine for the way we would like to tour.
And certainly watching the progress thru the locks would be interesting

Gwendolynn- the friends organising the group are insistent on an Australian owned cruise (keeping the stimulus package in Australian profits, if not actually in the country) This probably limits us to Scenic(the one we are considering) or APT. I will discuss both with our travel agent. Itineraries of both are very similar, tho there is a greater variety of shore excursions on Scenic. Excursions are free, as is wine with lunch & dinner (Scenic) or with dinner only (APT) I will do the total cost comparisons when latest info is out, however Scenic is likely to be the one. The river cruise is part of a longer trip, primarily in the south of France, so
if we choose to join the cruise group, their choice of providor will be fine by us

Again, thank you both for your reply
trotsky is offline  
Apr 28th, 2009, 06:21 PM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
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Additional costs for the day trips depends on the boat I think.
For me: Mississippi - all tours were extra. China, Egypt,Russia, Holland, they were all included. I have used Uniworld, Maupintour for Egypt, and Pacific Delight/Victoria Cruises for China.

We always came back for lunch and dinner....and I agree w/ often moved on during lunch!

Cruisin down the river...anywhere...is the best!!!!
LEANNA is offline  
Apr 29th, 2009, 01:18 PM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
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This cruise is THE most wonderful and I'd do it again in a minute!! We did Amsterdam-Budapest one year and the next, Bucharest-Budapest. We travel with Tauck World Discovery and most days ate lunch on board, but also ate at local restaurants, usually the most historic in the area, upscale and picturesque. Sometimes the boat continued down the river as we toured inland, other times we were on the boat as we went down the river and what fantastic gorgeous days those were!! You will love it and you won't be at all disappointed!
desertduds is offline  

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