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The ever increasing popularity of river cruising


notamermaid
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1 hour ago, notamermaid said:

I was a bit skeptical about the 2022 ships as well. It appears that both those German companies are not members, it could be a company behind a company that is a member but I do not recognize any names that would lead me to A-Rosa or Viva Cruises:

https://www.igrivercruise.com/en/members/

 

Scylla AG is a member and VIVA Cruises is owned by Scylla. So I wonder why the VIVA One is not listed.

 

steamboats

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4 hours ago, notamermaid said:

Another marketing gimmick to entice cruisers to your brand. Yawn.

 

How many hundreds of boats, with new marketing gimmicks, rafted together across a river, do we need? 

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 2 weeks later...

A new ship has come to the Plantours Kreuzfahrten fleet! The German company welcomes the Lady Cristina who will sail from May. Okay, you really need to speak German to get enjoyment out of  Lady Cristina's itineraries but I post this here for your general interest and a few of you seasoned river cruisers will remember her - she is the former Amadagio (the current one actually being her fourth name): https://www.seatrade-cruise.com/news/plantours-charters-lady-cristina-adds-23-itineraries-next-year

 

Since the article went online, Plantours has put the ship info on the website https://www.plantours-partner.de/ms-lady-cristina-neues-flussschiff.html

and you can see her itineraries leaving from her base in Frankfurt, an unusual city to have a river cruise ship starting almost all cruises from: https://www.plantours-partner.de/ms-lady-cristina-flusskreuzfahrten.html

I love the idea of short Christmas shopping on the Main river. Will certainly look at Plantours during this year.

 

It appears that in the last three years Frankfurt has gone up at least two levels in popularity for starting a river cruise, not just for European lines. An interesting development. Frankfurt being a passenger train hub and having an international airport this makes perfect sense. Apart from Frankfurt having much to offer as regards sightseeing and having a nice Christmas market, too, in my opinion.

 

Perhaps in the future more international lines will add even more convenient itineraries for the Main. I hope so, especially for winter.

 

notamermaid

 

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travel weekly looks back at 2022: https://www.travelweekly.com/River-Cruising/Insights/The-biggest-stories-in-river-cruising-2022

 

It was a chaotic year still but summer already held the promise of autumn and winter - and 2023 - getting us back on track I would say. For me as a relative local low water is always on the radar but for international travellers it is not an inviting prospect to potentially have your plans altered. Flooding to some extent and low water in late summer and autumn will always be a thing to reckon with. Just whether it will affect a specific cruise and to what extent we may only find out 48 hours in advance. Good to read that Asia is so much more open for travelling again.

 

I must admit that I did not expect Crystal the brand and its ships to come back so quickly. A kind of happy ending, or at least the promise of one, for what was a shock to the industry at the beginning of 2022.

 

For me, new itineraries in Germany and a couple of new ships on the Rhine are again the exciting developments this year. Yes, although the river and many ports are more or less crowded and full of river cruise ships, I still see more room to grow and space for a few ships. A 110m ship, please, operators!

 

While this two-night "male" river cruise by Thurgau Travel called "Männersache" https://www.thurgautravel.ch/reisen/thurgau-prestige-maennersache/ is a nice start I while utter my woes of there not being a river cruise itinerary on the Rhine and or Moselle that has a "steel, stones, technical details and beer glass" focus. Needs to be seven nights long - at least - and go from Basel to Amsterdam with a pre cruise around Basel. Come on river cruise companies, be daring. I am working on one... Rest assured you can take your better half along, they may well enjoy the excursions or the coach can pick her up at the shopping center or spa. :classic_biggrin:

 

notamermaid

 

 

 

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Scenic has announced new excursions and experiences on their European river cruises: https://www.seatrade-cruise.com/ports-destinations/scenic-rolls-out-new-shore-excursions-european-river-cruises

 

I said that I would like to see more variety on the Rhine river (and elsewhere) so this looks good. For the Rhine/Moselle itinerary and within the Netherlands "Het Loo" is a great addition I find. This is a palace that has been on my list of favourite places that need exploring in my neighbouring country for a few years now. On the Rhine in Germany, I do not know about you, but I am underwhelmed by the Rüdesheim excursion. It is nice but isn't almost everybody doing this?

 

The eagle spotting in Croatia - sounds amazing.

 

notamermaid

 

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The Rüdesheim excursion is definitely not new. It's exactly what has been offered since at least 2017. The only difference is they now mention the purpose of the Niederwald Monument ("which marks the 19th century unification of Germany") instead of saying "for a spectacular view of the river."

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Maybe the difference is the combination of Siegfried's plus the cablecar.  When I did this itinerary on AMA we had to choose between a vineyard walk/wine tasting or the cable car in the afternoon, then Siegfried's or Rudesheimer coffee after dinner.  IMO this one excursion combines the best 2 of those 4 choices.

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On our second trip we did Siegfried’s and then the cable car, a quick dash around the Christmas shop, then found a cafe where we sat and had an excellent Rudesheimer coffee whilst watching the chaos as the heavens opened and made the streets like mini rivers. Then a slow amble back to the ship and in the square several local car clubs were showing off their pride and joys. I nearly got captured by a (rather attractive) Frenchman when he discovered I’d owned a 2CV for many years. Altogether another memorable day on the rivers of Europe.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Another Viking ship for the Seine, not until 2025, but the company seems to want to announce early that there is a contract for building a fifth ship for the Seine. So the four 125m ones will get another sister: https://travelweekly.co.uk/news/tourism/viking-adds-fifth-ship-to-paris-fleet

 

It says "Exclusive docking location at Port de Grenelle". Err? I think they must mean that they have a landing stage that is Viking's own. Do not be fooled by the wording, there are other ships docking at Port de Grenelle:

image.png.68c3208a4caff99b914562fc2f33ff9c.png

 

The two blue dots close together are CroisiEurope's MS Boticelli and MS Renoir.

 

notamermaid

 

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Amadeus River Cruises unveils 2024 itineraries: https://travelweekly.co.uk/news/tour-operators/amadeus-river-cruises-unveils-2024-european-programme

 

The "Rhine in Flames" one is a truly special date. It incorporates the experience of the fireworks at Koblenz: https://www.rhein-in-flammen.com/spay-koblenz-gb/spay-koblenz-gb.html

 

notamermaid

 

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APT and Travelmarvel have published their itineraries for 2024: https://travelweekly.co.uk/news/tour-operators/apt-and-travelmarvel-unveils-2024-european-river-cruising-programme

 

The new 15 day cruise in Belgium and the Netherlands looks a really in-depth experience, I must say.

 

notamermaid

 

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Fancy a round of golf and cruising the Rhine? You can combine a trip along the river and that sport on a river cruise with Amadeus: https://www.amadeus-rivercruises.co.uk/river-cruises/detail/2023/golf-cruise-on-the-rhine-8-days

 

I can confirm that the Golfclub Jakobsberg has a great setting on a plateau in the Rhine Gorge. An exclusive but good vibe was at the entrance gate - I do not play golf but was up there during a day trip with short hike in the area.

 

notamermaid

 

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The Viva Two was christened in Düsseldorf on 23 March. German reports have come in since, but this is the first in English: https://travelweekly.co.uk/news/tourism/viva-cruises-confirms-third-new-ship

 

Apparently on the occasion of the christening, Viva Cruises announced that a third new ship will join the fleet.

 

notamermaid

 

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On 3/21/2023 at 1:30 PM, notamermaid said:

Fancy a round of golf and cruising the Rhine? You can combine a trip along the river and that sport on a river cruise with Amadeus: https://www.amadeus-rivercruises.co.uk/river-cruises/detail/2023/golf-cruise-on-the-rhine-8-days

 

I can confirm that the Golfclub Jakobsberg has a great setting on a plateau in the Rhine Gorge. An exclusive but good vibe was at the entrance gate - I do not play golf but was up there during a day trip with short hike in the area.

 

notamermaid

 

Interesting!  An avid golfer, my husband would love this as he has not had the chance to golf on any of our European trips!  I would be happy to accompany him but I coudn't tell by their list of excursions if there would be other choices for non-golfers.  

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In the Rhine thread I mentioned the christening of the MS Alisa. She is sailing for the German company Phoenix Reisen. Nice to read that she will feature in another series of "Verrückt nach Meer" (actually, it should be Verrückt nach Fluss) a series that follows a few select passengers and the crew along on a cruise or river cruise. Previous seasons were filmed on other ships in the Phoenix fleet.

 

https://cruiseindustrynews.com/cruise-news/2023/04/phoenix-reisen-names-new-river-boat-alisa/

 

notamermaid

 

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Amadeus brings back a festive cruise itinerary: https://travelweekly.co.uk/news/tour-operators/amadeus-river-cruises-reintroduces-festive-sailing

 

I really like this one. Starting in Strasbourg rather than Basel cuts out a section of the river that is often sailed at night anyway, i.e. the Canal in Alsace. You miss Breisach though, which is a small place and one that I think I would not need to see in winter. It is for warmer days for me. Great ports are visited on the Rhine and Main and stopping at Würzburg is an unusual but nice idea. While Würzburg has no international airport it is a train hub and connections are good for Frankfurt and Munich.

 

notamermaid

 

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The seasoned cruisers among you will know that the European market for river cruises differs from the North-American one, meaning the passengers on the continent and from the UK travel differently and lines cater to that. It is not a vast difference but noticeable. A few notes from travelweekly on this. Perhaps there is some info that you find interesting. https://www.travelweekly.com/River-Cruising/Insights/River-cruises-for-Europeans-and-US-guests

 

notamermaid

 

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Two continents, three river cruise ship christenings. The American Jazz and the American Serenade: https://www.travelweekly.com/River-Cruising/American-Cruise-Lines-christens-two-riverboats?ct=river

The Amadeus Riva: https://www.travelweekly.com/River-Cruising/Amadeus-Riva-christened?ct=river

 

Safe travels to them always.

 

notamermaid

 

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