River Cruise Possibilities

River cruising has become wildly popular in recent years. For good reasons. Here are just a few.

• Intimate ship size. Typically under 200 passengers on board.
• Unpack just once. Even though you may visit a different town or village each day, you needn’t pack again until the end of the trip.
• Very little motion. Rivers are intrinsically calm with a nearly level surface, eliminating any anxiety about seasickness.
• Port Proximity. Ocean cruise ports may be hours away from points of interest, most river ports are immediately in the heart of the city.
• Included excursions. Typically, these are basic overview walking tours. Others may be offered, some for additional fees.

Because of the popularity, the river cruise lines seek to distinguish themselves from each other by offering special interest themes, off-the-beaten-path itineraries, and deluxe onboard amenities. Take a look.

From Avalon Waterways
Hike, bike and explore your way through the picturesque and historic marvels of the world. On these interactive and dynamic cruises, Avalon gives you opportunities to spend time with locals to learn about local customs and the traditions with hands-on activities.

From Crystal River Cruises
Crystal Cruises has inaugurated the second Rhine-class riverboat to its Crystal River Cruises brand. The Crystal Mahler was christened by American volleyball star and godmother Lauren Barfield in Germany.
The christening took place during a handover ceremony at the MV WERFTEN shipyard also attended by cruise line executives, local dignitaries, and Crystal parent company Genting Hong Kong guests. Barfield—who is currently playing for Genting-sponsored SSC Palmberg Schwerin—blessed the ship and broke a bottle of champagne over its bow.
The Crystal Mahler will embark on seven-, eleven- and 16-day sailings on the Rhine and Danube Rivers. It will visit ports in the European countries of Austria, Germany, Slovakia, Netherlands, and Hungary.
The Rhine-class ships will carry 106 guests in all-suite, all-balcony accommodations featuring an unrivaled crew-to-guest ratio.
Amenities include suites with walk-in closets and dual vanity bathrooms, butler service for every guest, ETRO robes and slippers, iPad use, 42-inch HD TVs with streaming films, free Wi-Fi and Nespresso machines. Other features are a spa and fitness center, the signature Palm Court and Michelin-inspired dining in the Waterside Restaurant, Bistro Café, and Vintage Room.

From Viking River Cruises
This 8-day cruise from Avignon to Lyon (or the reverse) highlights the most celebrated regions of France, exploring the Roman ruins of Arles, the fabled Beaujolais vineyards, the UNESCO World Heritage Site at Lyon and more.

New and popular themes from AmaWaterways

Wellness

Wine

From Uniworld Boutique River Cruises

Journey through the “cradle of civilization.” Uniworld’s boutique river cruise and tour in India showcases astonishing sights along the country’s most acclaimed river, as well as must-see destinations in Delhi, Agra, and Jaipur—the “Golden Triangle”—one of the most culturally-rich areas of the subcontinent. From New Delhi to Kolkota, this 13-day itinerary is a stage for unforgettable cultural experiences. Meet the proud, generous and good-natured Indian people. Taste their amazingly complex and delicious cuisine. Discover India’s Islamic and colonial heritage in Delhi, and pay tribute to the legacies of Gandhi and Mother Teresa. Experience the spectacle of Jaipur’s color-saturated bazaars, and gaze in awe at the resplendent Taj Mahal. Quintessential India, delivered in Uniworld’s incomparable style. Take a look at Uniworld’s newest destination video—a alluring peep at the adventures that await in India!

From CroisiEurope
A unique river cruise itinerary. South of Spain : the Guadalquivir and Guadiana rivers with Altantic Ocean connection

Appealing? Want to plan a river cruise for 2017 or 2018? I would love to make this happen for you.

Need more information? We service many of our clients entirely through email:

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  • or by phone – 800-372-1963
  • Danube Dreams For Wine Lovers

    Join us on Avalon Waterways 10-day “Suite-Ship” the Panorama on October 29, 2018. We’ll begin our European adventure with two nights in Prague, the capital of the Czech Republic, then sail along the Danube River, and end in Hungary’s exciting capital of Budapest. This is a cruise with a wine theme and a Master of Wine will sail with us and will share his expertise at lectures and wine tastings!

    Danube Dreams for Wine Lovers
    Our Itinerary

    In Prague, guided sightseeing shows us the city’s best-known treasures and an excursion takes you to Mĕlník to visit the wine cellars of the Lobkowicz family. Then we’ll drive to Regensburg, one of Germany’s best-preserved medieval cities. Lovers of architecture will delight in the treasures this town has to offer. Enjoy a tasting of local sausages before heading to Deggendorf, where our river cruise journey begins. Passau, the “City of Three Rivers” lies at the confluence of the Danube, Inn, and Ilz Rivers. We’ll walk the city with a Local Guide and marvel at the patrician houses and baroque St. Stephen’s Cathedral. In Linz, Austria, we’ll walk around the Hauptplatz, Austria’s largest medieval square which forms the center of the city and prepares our taste buds for an exclusive onboard food and wine-pairing dinner hosted by your Master of Wine. We’ll enjoy the splendid views as we cruise through the picturesque wine region of Wachau Valley. We’ll stop in Melk to visit the spectacular Benedictine Abbey; and in Dürnstein, we may join an optional interactive wine experience and tasting. Vienna, the “City of Music,” makes an immediate impression with its lavish Hofburg Imperial Palace and neo-renaissance Vienna Opera House. We’ll enjoy a guided tour of this magical city and then take time to explore on our own. In Bratislava, Slovakia’s capital, a guided walk takes us through the delightful Old Town and a visit to gothic St. Martin’s Cathedral.

    Lastly, a local expert shows us the must-see sights of Budapest, then takes us to visit wine cellars right in the heart of the city! A perfect ending to this timeless European river cruise.

    Budapest At Night

    Highlights & Sightseeing
    Day 1 Prague: welcome to Prague

    Prague Astronomical Clock

    Day 2 Prague: guided sightseeing, see the Astronomical Clock and visit Hradčany Castle grounds, excursion to Melnik

    Day 3 Prague–Regensburg, Germany–Deggendorf (Embarkation): travel by motorcoach to Regensburg, guided sightseeing; special treat; transfer to Deggendorf; onboard welcome reception

    Day 4 Passau: guided walk, onboard wine tasting and lecture by our Master of Wine

    Day 5 Linz Austria: guided sightseeing, onboard Food and Wine pairing dinner

    Day 6 Melk–Dürnstein: guided visit of the Benedictine Abbey in Melk; cruise through the Wachau Valley; choice between guided walk in Dürnstein or an interactive wine experience. Melk Abbey

    Day 7 Vienna: guided sightseeing

    Day 8 Bratislava: guided sightseeing, visit St. Martin’s Cathedral

    Day 9 Budapest: guided sightseeing, see Fishermen’s Bastion and Heroes’ Square, visit a wine cellar and enjoy wine tasting. Budapest Fishermens Bastion

    Day 10 Budapest (Disembarkation): your vacation ends this morning

    Meals
    • Captain’s welcome & farewell receptions with sparkling wine and canapés
    • Welcome dinner
    • Farewell dinner
    • Daily full buffet breakfast with made-to-order egg station, hot and cold menu items
    • Early and Late Riser breakfast
    • Daily lunch buffet with pasta or carving stations
    • Alternative light lunch or (weather permitting) grill fare at the Sky Bistro on the Sky Deck
    • Daily four-course à la carte dinner in the main dining room
    • Alternative dinner of petite portions or regional specialties with wines, in the Panorama Bistro
    • Daily Afternoon Tea
    • Daily Night Fare
    • Complimentary sparkling wine with breakfast; wine, beer, or soft drinks with lunch and dinner are included daily on board your vessel

    Notes
    • In the event of water level problems or any problems of a technical nature, it may be necessary to operate the itinerary by motorcoach or to alter the program.
    • Included visits and special features are subject to change. If a change is necessary, a substitute will be offered.
    • Please check visa requirements with your local consulate(s); the responsibility for obtaining a visa rests with the traveler.

    Appealing? Won’t you join us? I would love to make this happen for you.

    Need more information? We service many of our clients entirely through email:

  • Click Here To Email Us

  • or by phone – 800-372-1963
  • What’s New With AmaWaterways?

    AmaWaterways, designated Best River Cruise Line of 2016 by Cruise Critic, continues to set the standards for ingenuity and flair in the river cruise industry year after year. New additions for 2017 feature multi-generational travel, more alternative ways to explore and more included choices. AmaWaterways has effectively attracted new passengers to river cruising, and they continue to fine-tune the onboard experience with alternative restaurants and new cabin designs. Take a look at the latest features below.

    ► NEW! River Cruise Ship, AmaKristina
    AmaWaterways Lobby Set to debut on April 1, 2017, the AmaKristina is the 21st member of AmaWaterways fleet, named after Godmother, Kristin Karst. The 158-passenger vessel features connecting staterooms and triple accommodations, designed specifically to target the multi-generational group and family travel markets.

    ► NEW! Africa Safari & Wildlife Cruise Itinerary
    Experience the thrill of daily game drives and exceptional amenities, service and cuisine aboard the Zambezi Queen on the new Wildlife and the Falls itinerary. 1 night Johannesburg, a 4-night African river safari, 2 nights in Victoria Falls, 2 nights in Johannesburg & 3 nights at a luxury safari lodge in greater Kruger National Park
    Game Viewing On The Chobe12 Nights – Travel to Johannesburg and return from Johannesburg



    ► More Wine Cruises in 2017
    AmaWaterways‘ award-winning wine theme cruises have grown significantly to nearly 50 departures in 2017. These are exclusive wine cruises that showcase the acclaimed wine regions along Europe’s Danube, Douro, Mosel, Rhine, Rhone and Seine Rivers. These exceptional sailings are hosted by leading wine experts and feature complimentary lectures, wine tastings, superb cuisine with paired wines, and excursions to historic vineyards and wine cellars. Durnstein Wine Tasting Guests learn about centuries-old wine traditions, sample one-of-a-kind vintages and enjoy private wine-themed excursions. Other highlights include: music and newly pressed wine at a rustic Austrian tavern; Alsatian wines in Colmar, the French “Capital of Alsatian Wine”; and a German “Oktoberfest” in the village of Vilshofen, held year-round exclusively for our guests. Love wine? These are the perfect cruises for you!

    ► More Ways to Discover
    Recently awarded Cruise Critic’s 2016 Best River Cruise Line for Active Cruisers, AmaWaterways offers travelers a new degree of adventure including a selection of biking, hiking, and multiple-paced walking tours. Castelo Rodrigo Portugal



    ► Backroads Partnership
    Biking On The Danube AmaWaterways and Backroads have amplified their partnership, doubling active river cruise options for 2017, with over 100 departures to choose from.

    ► Adventures By Disney Partnership
    Following the successful inauguration of the partnership, Adventures by Disney has expanded its lineup of family-oriented river cruises with AmaWaterways in 2017, now featuring itineraries on both the Danube and Rhine rivers. Family Vacation



    If you are considering an AmaWaterways river cruise, please feel free to send me an email or call me so we can discuss your vacation plans in detail.

    Need more information? We service many of our clients entirely through email:

  • Click Here To Email Us

  • or by phone – 800-372-1963

  • Avalon Waterways 2017 Preview

    In response to increased demand, Avalon Waterways has added new features, more active excursions, and expanded special interest theme cruises.

    Fresh Vegetables
    Avalon Fresh®

    Avalon Fresh® In 2017, Avalon raises the gastronomic bar by teaming up with two of Europe’s rising culinary stars, the Wrenkh brothers. They have collaborated to create an inspiring collection of nourishing menu items so delectable you won’t believe they’re healthy. The emphasis is on fresh, local ingredients sourced from small farms and producers combined with a dash of novelty. You’ll feel fantastic all day long. There are even gluten-free options.

    Maintaining you healthy lifestyle while on vacation is easy with a state-of-the-art Fitness Center, free bicycles available for use in select ports, and complimentary Nordic walking sticks to put an extra spring in your step. To relax at the end of an active day, try a little salus per aquam (health from water) soak in the Sky Deck’s rejuvenating whirlpool.

    Active Discovery On The Danube. Avalon Waterways® has introduced a new itinerary focused on active-themed excursions. Bike, hike, or canoe along the Danube. Learn how to milk cows and mow grass with a scythe. Explore an ice cave, take an archery lesson, descend into an underground salt mine.

    Archery
    Take an Archery lesson

    Ascend a mountain during a guided climb. Play nine holes of golf, learn some of the local language, prepare regional delicacies at a hands-on cooking class.
    Golf
    Play nine holes of golf.
    Connect with the locals in every port. You choose the interactive activities that appeal to you most.


    Your Passions. Food. Wine. History. Art. An active lifestyle. Whatever you’re enthusiastic about, Avalon Special Interest Cruises help you experience your destination from the point of view that interests you most~along with others who share your passion. Profit from onboard presentations by topic experts and exceptional activities on shore, all at no extra cost!

    Beer Flights
    Beer Tasting Theme Cruise

    Sheet Music
    Music Theme Cruise
    2017 Special Interest Cruises include: Wine Appreciation, Culinary, Beer Tasting, Jazz, Music, Art and Impressionist, WWII History, Jewish Heritage and Festive time.

    If you are considering an Avalon Waterways® river cruise, please feel free to send me an email or call me so we can discuss your vacation plans in detail.

    Need more information? We service many of our clients entirely through email:

  • Click Here To Email Us

  • or by phone – 800-372-1963

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  • French Wine Experiences

    White Wine Tasting

    If you’ve got a passion for outstanding travel experiences and unforgettable wines, why not make 2016 the year you visit some of Europe’s most famous wine regions? On Châteaux, Rivers & Wine cruise explore incomparable Bordeaux, arguably the most famous wine region in the world.

    Viking River Cruises

    Viking River Cruises

    The Châteaux, Rivers & Wine itinerary explores the region’s opulent culture including its 18th-century merchant mansions, Gothic churches, celebrated Quarter Saint-Pierre and, of course, France’s largest controlled wine region with its Médoc, Saint-Ėmilion and Graves collections.

    The Wine Regions of Bordeaux
    Bordeaux, France is home to the world’s most prized wines. Learn about its many different regions and appellations with Karine Hagen of Viking.

    Bordeaux’s Sublime Red and White Wines from Viking River Cruises
    Delve into the essence of the region’s most popular wines with a local expert.

    Bordeaux’s Clairet & Rosé Wines from Viking River Cruises
    Introduce yourself to some of the hidden gems of Bordeaux. You’ll learn the subtle differences and why the French treasure these wines each summer.

    Truffle Hunting
    Ever wonder how rare and delicious truffles are found? Join Karine Hagen of Viking River Cruises in Bordeaux, France as she learns how dogs are trained to unearth one of the world’s great delicacies. On Viking’s Châteaux, Rivers & Wine river cruise, a visit to a working truffle farm is one of the many optional excursions you can enjoy.

    Sauternes – The Sweet Alternative from Viking River Cruises
    Enjoy a glimpse into this intriguing sweet wine. Karine Hagen takes a closer look with one of Sauternes’ local experts.

    If you are considering an wine themed river cruise in France, please feel free to send me an email or call me so we can discuss your vacation plans in detail.

    Need more information? We service many of our clients entirely through email:

  • Click Here To Email Us

  • or by phone – 800-372-1963

  • Châteaux, Rivers & Wine


    Viking River Cruises Special Offers - 2 -TastefulJourneys

    If you’ve got a passion for outstanding travel experiences and unforgettable wines, why not make 2015 the year you visit some of Europe’s most famous wine regions? On Viking River Cruises Châteaux, Rivers & Wine cruise explore incomparable Bordeaux, arguably the most famous wine region in the world.

    The Châteaux, Rivers & Wine itinerary explores the region’s opulent culture including its 18th-century merchant mansions, Gothic churches, celebrated Quarter Saint-Pierre and, of course, France’s largest controlled wine region with its Médoc, Saint-Ėmilion and Graves collections.

    The Wine Regions of Bordeaux

    Bordeaux, France is home to the world’s most prized wines. Learn about its many different regions and appellations with Karine Hagen of Viking.


    Continue reading Châteaux, Rivers & Wine

    6 River Cruises Wine Lovers Shouldn’t Miss!

    Celebration of Wine

    AmaWaterways popular In Celebration of Wine river cruises are for intrepid oenophiles keen to immerse themselves in the culture and traditions of Europe’s top wine producing regions. Set sail this November for one of six cruises on the Rhine or the Danube Rivers featuring wine tastings, tours of vineyards and wineries, wine and food pairings, and onboard lectures from distinguished wine authorities. Delight in magnificent wines as you fix your eyes upon astounding and ever-shifting landscape. Love wine? These are the ideal river cruises for you!

    MelodiesOfTheDanube

    GREAT CAPITALS & VINTAGES OF THE DANUBE
    7-night cruise from Budapest to Vilshofen aboard the AmaBella
    U.S. Departure Date: November 8, 2013
    Starting from $2,149 per person
    Optional 3 nights in Prague for $690 per person
    Wine Hosts: Bob & Jodi Dickinson of Camillus House, Miami, FL

    Bob and Jodi Dickinson are passionate fundraisers for Camillus House, a Florida nonprofit. A former cruise industry executive, Bob is a wine enthusiast and collector and a member of many prestigious food and wine societies.

    Continue reading 6 River Cruises Wine Lovers Shouldn’t Miss!

    How To Take Your Wine Tasting Club To The Next Level

    You and your friends have organized a successful wine tasting club. You’ve done everything right for each monthly meeting:

  • Decided on a formal or informal format
  • Created a theme such as “Wines of Chile,” “The Best of the California Cabernets,” or “Favorite Holiday Wines”
  • Selected the wines. 3 or 4 wines allow club members to fully experience every wine without feeling overwhelmed.
    A rule of thumb for purchasing your wines is most of your guests will drink approximately 2 glasses total ~ a bottle usually holds 4-5 glasses, so this should give you a guideline for how many bottles to purchase. Have something for members to nosh on. Cheese, crackers, and fresh fruit plates are typical at wine tastings.
  • Secured appropriate wine tasting supplies and accessories such as glasses, rinse pitchers, dump buckets, drinking water, bland bread or crackers, and a tasting evaluation form for each member
  • Allocated time for enrichment from research shared by members or an outside presenter such as a wine merchant or local winery vintner
  • Focused on food and wine paring with the meeting theme
  • Mailed a newsletter or sent an enewsletter with the next meeting’s location, agenda, theme, and other details as well as a review of the last meeting’s tastings, upcoming community wine-related events, etc.
    AMA Waterways In Celebration of Wine
    AMA Waterways In Celebration of Wine Theme Cruises

    You’ve done well. Membership has grown and your group of like-minded individuals are now the best of friends. Where can you go from here? Plan a tour for your group to a wine region! Start with a short trip, perhaps a three or four day gathering in Napa Valley. After one or two successful wine holidays, plan more extensive travel to wine regions of France, Germany, South Africa or even Australia and New Zealand.

    Continue reading How To Take Your Wine Tasting Club To The Next Level

  • Drinking It All In

    Food and wine are integral parts of the Celebrity Cruises® vacation experience. In fact, the line’s brand has been built on a strong epicurean reputation. Since 2004 then partnering with Bon Appetit magazine, “Savor the Caribbean” culinary experiences at sea have featured gastronomic enrichment programs on select winter sailings.

    Celebrity Cruises Wine Tasting

    This fall, oenophiles will rejoice! Wine enthusiasts and culture seekers alike will take pleasure in the “Immersive Europe Wine Cruises” aboard Celebrity Constellation®.

    Celebrity Sommelier Decanting Wine

    Continue reading Drinking It All In