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  #1  
Old December 26th, 2012, 07:23 PM
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trish1c trish1c is offline
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Default what's a French balcony?

I did a search but didn't get an answer.

Just starting to look at River cruises. A family member planted the seed on Christmas as DH & I are taking off for our caribbean cruise next week on a mega ship.

What are the differences & similaries between the two experiences besides the obvious -- river v. ocean; size / intimacy; wifi & wine & beer included?

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  #2  
Old December 27th, 2012, 06:52 AM
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We are going to be 1st time river cruisers in May 2013. We booked a French Balcony. On a fast moving, salt spraying, ocean viewing cruise ship I am happy to have an obstructed window. I just need a glimpse of daylight and to see the weather. Also, I am cheap and prefer to cruise frequently, rather than luxuriously. However, on a riverboat there will always be "stuff to see": everchanging towns and castles, boats on the river, lights at night. So I really wanted to enjoy the view and hear the sounds. So we opted for a big sliding glass "patio-door like" window that opens. I wont be able to sit or even step outside; but I will be able to stick my head out and look up or down the Rhine river.

One word of caution. I did not research this. It never crossed my mind as a possibility: Other riverboats can tie up next to you! So I bought some cute pajamas for the morning when I wake up and fling open my window. Instead of seeing a quaint town or castle; I find myself staring into the face of some guy on another riverboat. Hopefully, he will be wearing pajamas, too.
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Future cruises - Jan 4, 2014 Back to Back Crown Princess
1983 World Explorer SS Universe to Alaska - 14 day
1986 Costa Riviera
1988 NCL Skyward
1991 Premier Majestic
1992 Premier Majestic
2001 NCL Seaward
2004 RCI Sovereign of the Sea
2005 RCI Splendour of the Sea
2005 Celebrity Zenith - Christmas at Sea
2006 Caribbean Princess - Christmas at Sea
2007 NCL Pearl - Christmas at Sea
2008 NCL Jewel - Christmas at Sea
2009 RCI Radiance of the Sea - Alaska Cruisetour cruise
2009 Star Princess Sept. 23 - Oct. 24, 2009 San Francisco to Sydney
2010 NCL Pearl - Pacific Coastal
2010 HAL Amsterdam - 1 night to Seattle
2010 Caribbean Princess - New England/Canada
2011 Golden Princess - 14 day LA to Hawaii
2011 Celebrity Infinity - 10 day Alaska RT Seattle
2011 RCI Navigator of the Sea - 6 nite - circle Cuba
2012 Golden Princess - LA to Hawaii
2012 Caribbean Princess - 12 nite - British Isles
2013 - Vantage River Venture - Rhine and Mosel - 14 nite river cruise - with a 500-year flood
2013 - NCL Dawn - Back to Back: Boston to Quebec to Boston
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  #3  
Old December 27th, 2012, 07:15 AM
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I understand your position and I too would get a "french balcony" but except for that morning time when you are in your pajamas you will not spend enough time in your cabin to really make use of it.
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  #4  
Old December 27th, 2012, 07:23 AM
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Here is a good pic of a French Balcony: http://www.google.com/imgres?imgurl=...9QEwDA&dur=686
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  #5  
Old December 27th, 2012, 09:42 AM
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We had one and it was great ..... Join us on one ..{ we moved from exit 8 on the tpke} River Crusing is GREAT .
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Carnival: 27 voyages; 187 days
Celebrity: 3 voyages; 24 days
Holland: 9 voyages; 138 days
Norwegian: 2 voyages; 16 days
Princess: 16 voyages; 154 days
Royal Carib: 5 voyages; 35 days
Vantage: River 2 voyage 36 days
GRAND TOTAL: 64 voyages -590 days

NOT YET SAILED
Holland Ryndam 4/14 - 19 days
Holland Maasdam 6/14 -14 days
Holland Eurodam 8/14 -18 days
Princess Coral 10/14-11 days
Holland Prinsendam 11/14 -28 days
Holland Ryndam 1/15 -14 days
Holland Maasdam 3/15 -14 days
Holland Amsterdam 5/15 - 16 days

Holland Veendam 6/15 - 14 days
Vantage River Cruise 8/15 - 21 days
Holland Prinsendam 10/15 - 28 days

Last edited by we're sailing away....; December 27th, 2012 at 09:48 AM.
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  #6  
Old December 27th, 2012, 11:11 AM
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Just came to my mind again: This summer I compiled a few pictures to explain the difference (esp. twin / combined balconies).

http://www.rivercruiseinfo.com/conte...-and-balconies

enjoy
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  #7  
Old December 27th, 2012, 11:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ingo_e View Post
Just came to my mind again: This summer I compiled a few pictures to explain the difference (esp. twin / combined balconies).

http://www.rivercruiseinfo.com/conte...-and-balconies

enjoy
Super link !!!! Thanks Ingo....
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  #8  
Old December 27th, 2012, 11:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ingo_e View Post
Just came to my mind again: This summer I compiled a few pictures to explain the difference (esp. twin / combined balconies).

http://www.rivercruiseinfo.com/conte...-and-balconies

enjoy
What a great link. We are planning our first river cruise and I will be sure to share this with our cruising buddies.
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Carnival Imagination - Western Carib.
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  #9  
Old December 27th, 2012, 03:54 PM
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You asked about differences: all tours are included on most lines, but if you are a very independent traveler you don't have to take them: you are never out of sight of land; there are locks, glorious locks and they can happen day or nite. If you are a lite sleeper go for midships as there are both bow and stern thrusters and they can wake even a heavy sleeper. Many lines are including beer and wine with dinner, some even at lunch. River cruising is becoming extremely popular, so if there is a specific time you want to go--book early, the season is usually March til right after New Years. Russia is usually May til Oct. Everyone here has their favorite line or lines--ours are AMAwaterways and Uniworld. Some of us have travelled more than one line and some stick with one only. Try to give us some specific questions and we will try to answer. There are posters from countries in Europe also. Good luck. Pat
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  #10  
Old December 27th, 2012, 05:20 PM
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We had a french balcony on our first river cruise in august, I think this is what we would choose on future cruises too. We did spend some lovely relaxing hours of an afternoon in our cabin, most tours etc tended to be of a morning, so the last couple of hours before dinner was a good time to sit back and read, watch the world go by, have a wine or as in my husbands case a few nanna naps. Plus waving to locals , who must see so many ships pass by, but always waving and smiling.
Of a night it was nice just laying in bed hearing the sounds of the river and the lights and of a morning an early coffee sitting there watching the world sttart its day, especially if you were passing or docked in towns.
We just found being able to open the windows and take in the atmosphere just added to our fantastic experience.
Deb
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  #11  
Old December 27th, 2012, 05:47 PM
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Sorry if my previous post offended anyone. It was not meant to do so. I see that it has been eliminated......................
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3/98-SUNCOAST CRUISE LINE-CAROUSEL; 5/98-NCL-SEA; 2/99-CELEBRITY-MERCURY; 5/99-RCL; 10/99-PRINCESS-SUN; 3/00-COSTA-VICTORIA; 12/00-RADISSON-PAUL GAUGUIN; 3/01-WINDSTAR-WINDSURF; 5/01-HAL-NOORDAM; 9/01-RCL-LEGEND; 3/02-NCL-WIND; 5/02-CELEB-CONSTELLATION; 9/02-HAL-NOORDAM; 11/02-CELEB-CENTURY; 3/03-NCL-SUN; 5/03-CELEB-MILLENNIUM; 3/04-CELEB-INFINITY; 7/04-RCL-JEWEL; 9/04-CELEB-HORIZON; 11/04-GRAND CIR. NILE-ANUKET; 5/05-RCL-SPLENDOR; 7/05-VANTAGE-DANUBE; 10/05-HAL-WESTERDAM; 2/06-HAL-STATENDAM; 5/06-U of L-YANGTZE-CHINA; 9/06-RCL-JEWEL; 2/07-CELEB.-SUMMIT; 5/07-RCL-LEGEND; 11/07-RCL-Voyager; 3/08-RCL-Brilliance; 5/08-RCL-Liberty; 8/08-Princess-Sea; 11/08-RCL-Freedom (back to back); 11/08-RCL-Freedom (back to back); 3/09-RCL-Splendour; 5/09-RCI-Legend; 7/09-Oceania-Nautica; 2/10-Azamara-Quest; 6/10-Celebrity-Eclipse; 11/10-RCI Voyager; 2/11-Galapagos Explorer II; 2/11-RCI-Vision; 5/11-Diamond Princess; 5/11-Diamond Princess (b2b); 11/14-HAL-Zuiderdam; 1/12-Oceania-Regatta; 6/12-Caribbean Princess; 10/12-Regent SS Voyager; 1/13-Celebrity Millennium; 10/13-Celebrity Summit; 11/13-AMALotus;

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  #12  
Old December 27th, 2012, 05:55 PM
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nana541 nana541 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robb View Post
Sorry if my previous post offended anyone. It was not meant to do so. I see that it has been eliminated......................
No not you....I started it and am sorry about that and have already apologized to the OP and once again apologize to everyone else on this board.

CC deleted a whole string of posts starting with my unfortunate post
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  #13  
Old December 27th, 2012, 05:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tassietravellers View Post
We had a french balcony on our first river cruise in august, I think this is what we would choose on future cruises too. We did spend some lovely relaxing hours of an afternoon in our cabin, most tours etc tended to be of a morning, so the last couple of hours before dinner was a good time to sit back and read, watch the world go by, have a wine or as in my husbands case a few nanna naps. Plus waving to locals , who must see so many ships pass by, but always waving and smiling.
Of a night it was nice just laying in bed hearing the sounds of the river and the lights and of a morning an early coffee sitting there watching the world sttart its day, especially if you were passing or docked in towns.
We just found being able to open the windows and take in the atmosphere just added to our fantastic experience.
Deb
Thanks Deb, that is what I was hoping!
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Future cruises - Jan 4, 2014 Back to Back Crown Princess
1983 World Explorer SS Universe to Alaska - 14 day
1986 Costa Riviera
1988 NCL Skyward
1991 Premier Majestic
1992 Premier Majestic
2001 NCL Seaward
2004 RCI Sovereign of the Sea
2005 RCI Splendour of the Sea
2005 Celebrity Zenith - Christmas at Sea
2006 Caribbean Princess - Christmas at Sea
2007 NCL Pearl - Christmas at Sea
2008 NCL Jewel - Christmas at Sea
2009 RCI Radiance of the Sea - Alaska Cruisetour cruise
2009 Star Princess Sept. 23 - Oct. 24, 2009 San Francisco to Sydney
2010 NCL Pearl - Pacific Coastal
2010 HAL Amsterdam - 1 night to Seattle
2010 Caribbean Princess - New England/Canada
2011 Golden Princess - 14 day LA to Hawaii
2011 Celebrity Infinity - 10 day Alaska RT Seattle
2011 RCI Navigator of the Sea - 6 nite - circle Cuba
2012 Golden Princess - LA to Hawaii
2012 Caribbean Princess - 12 nite - British Isles
2013 - Vantage River Venture - Rhine and Mosel - 14 nite river cruise - with a 500-year flood
2013 - NCL Dawn - Back to Back: Boston to Quebec to Boston
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  #14  
Old December 27th, 2012, 07:23 PM
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H2Otstr H2Otstr is offline
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Default French balcony and lock wall


Our room on the Viking Sun



This is a photo of one of the walls in the locks. Taken from our room.
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SAILED: Viking, Portraits of Southern France. 2006
SAILED: Uniworld, Castles Along the Rhine, 2007
SAILED: Gate 1, Thanksgiving Cruise, 2007
SAILED: AMA Waterways, Portugal on the Douro, 2008
SAILED: Grand Circle: Romance of the Rhine and Mosel, 2010
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: Viking Emerald, China's Cultural Delights. 3/28/2011
SAILED: Grand Circle: Old World Prague and the Blue Danube. September 7, 2011. MS River Adagio
SAILED: Viking Spirit, Paris to Normandy. December 11, 2011.
SAILED: Grand Circle's Essence of the Elbe: Hamburg to Prague on the M/S River Allegro on May 27 to June 11, 2012
SAILED: Grand Circle Russia Revealed with pretrip to Helsinki and Tallinn on August 18, 2012. St. Petersburg to Moscow.
SAILED: Viking Sun, Treasures of the Rhine. Nov 11, 2012.
SAILED: AMACerto, Istanbul to Budapest. May 30, 2013.
SAILED: Uniworld River Queen, Classic Christmas Markets, Nuremberg to Frankfurt. Dec 5, 2013.
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  #15  
Old December 27th, 2012, 08:08 PM
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trish1c trish1c is offline
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Nana -- we're good.

I am "impressed." I didn't know CC cherry picked posts. I thought they just deleted the whole thread which would have been unfortunate.

Anyway, I found some helpful YouTube videos of river cruises. The personal ones gave me insight, but the ones professionally produced as commericals by the various companies offered better overviews.
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Old December 27th, 2012, 09:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trish1c View Post
Nana -- we're good.

I am "impressed." I didn't know CC cherry picked posts. I thought they just deleted the whole thread which would have been unfortunate.

Anyway, I found some helpful YouTube videos of river cruises. The personal ones gave me insight, but the ones professionally produced as commericals by the various companies offered better overviews.
Thanks Trish! No they delete individual post...someone must have flagged the post and frankly had I come across a "temper tantrum" like that I would have protected you too and let someone know....
The Youtube vidios are real good also search this board for links posted by "steve and kathy" they have wonderful personal blogs that cover a couple rivercruises. You really want to see these....once again I am at a loss as to how to post a link but maybe someone else will do it for you.
DH and I are sailing with Avalon Sept 2013 Paris to Prague, really excited.

Good luck to you in your research, but do go on each of the River cruiselines websites and order "old fashion" brochures, they are wonderful and easier to digest than the eBrochures.



PS those French Balconies are really just sliders with a bar to keep you from going out the wrong door....they do give you an open feeling and in warm weather let you feel the breeze!
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Last edited by nana541; December 27th, 2012 at 09:48 PM.
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  #17  
Old December 28th, 2012, 01:48 AM
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Here you go, a link to the blog i believe nana is referring to
http://www.stevekathytravels.com/

Ooooops, edited to repost a link to a thread I found helpful in comparing river cruiselines (one of the deleted posts)
http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1744727
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Past Cruises:
Carnival Imagination - Western Carib.
Carnival Valor - Southern Carib.
Norwegian Sun - Baltics
Royal Caribbean Brilliance - Mediterranean
Celebrity Millenium - Alaska
Royal Caribbean - Voyager of the Seas, Western Carib.
Nordic Prince - Bermuda

Last edited by sippican; December 28th, 2012 at 01:52 AM.
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  #18  
Old December 28th, 2012, 02:14 AM
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And here's another with a great river cruise review I forgot to include
http://www.thepreismans.com/
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Past Cruises:
Carnival Imagination - Western Carib.
Carnival Valor - Southern Carib.
Norwegian Sun - Baltics
Royal Caribbean Brilliance - Mediterranean
Celebrity Millenium - Alaska
Royal Caribbean - Voyager of the Seas, Western Carib.
Nordic Prince - Bermuda
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  #19  
Old December 28th, 2012, 11:14 AM
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nana541 nana541 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sippican View Post
And here's another with a great river cruise review I forgot to include
http://www.thepreismans.com/
Sippican, Thanks for posting the links! I had forgotten about this last link. I wish CC would just post these permenantly on the top of the board as they are great resources for newbies. I am forwarding both the links to 1st timers traveling with us next fall. They have never been to Europe and of course never done a Rivercruise ( unless you count fishing on a river in Oregon)

Thanks again ..

.. Ok the goal today is not to piss anyone off! Wish me luck


Today is the tomorrow you worried about yesterday!
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  #20  
Old December 28th, 2012, 05:40 PM
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Just a little trivia but those kind of balconies in a house are referred to as Juliet, as in Romeo and, balconies.

Hey Nana541, guess who we had for the day?
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