Posted September 24th, 2013, 10:45 PM
Hi Carol, there were 6 of us together on the Avalon Basel to Amsterdam Cruise
None of us drank beer, so can't comment, 4 of us are somewhat to very fussy about wines, we enjoyed most, different each night. One of the girls only drank Chardonnay, we got to know the wine waiters and they would always have that certain brand btl available for our table even if it was on the menu that night.
The free daily tours were good, on some of the walking tours we would break away from group at some point and then do our own think. They were happy with that provided we let them know as they keep count of the number on the tours so they don't leave anybody behind. They also provide you with maps and an emergency phone number and also address of dock and time you need to be back.
We did the paid "Alsace Country Side" (wine tasting tour) overall tour was enjoyable and we saw some countryside and also walked around a little town which was nice, the visit to winery was very average (this is based on 4 of us having done extensive winery visits and tasting in many countries and top self wineries). Yes we did by some wine and enjoyed drinking it on the top deck at night after dinner.
Also paid for "Volendam Tour", this was very good and most that did this tour said it was one of the best if not the best Tour of our 8 days.
I understand the tours differ depending on the direction you are sailing the Rhine, I think it is to do with docking and departing times.
Everybody was very happy with meals, I am the fussy eater and some nights did not like the local dishes. The good news is there is are 3 standard fall back dishes, Fish , Chicken or Steak every night so all were happy.
We did not need to worry about holding luggage at we arrived at hotel at 2.30 and Avalon people unloaded it directly from car onto their bus.
We pre paid tips as it was slightly less than their recommended cash tips at end of cruise. We did slip a little cash directly to 3 or 4 staff that had looked after us extremely well.
I can only say the trip was perfect in everyway and if you read the on going posts on CC you will not have any surprises.
That only worry I had before doing the cruise was that we would enjoy it so much we would want to do more. Yes it happened and now we are doing another one in July 2014. YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED
I have scanned all daily on board newsletter on to one file. Its is too big to load onto CC site but if you would like copies, e mail me on firstname.lastname@example.org
and I will send copy