All Things Avalon


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#1
Nashville, Tennessee USA
1,123 Posts
Joined Mar 2014
A couple of years ago--before going on my first Vantage river cruise--I started an "All Things Vantage" thread where folks were able to post comments and questions on Vantage river cruises. It's still around and a convenient place for folks to discuss Vantage.

Well, now I'm preparing for my first Avalon cruise (Canals, Vineyards, and Paris in September), so I'm going to see if a similar Avalon thread is worthwhile. If it's not, it'll simply drop slowly down the thread list.

So feel free to post any questions, thoughts, comments, etc. about Avalon to this thread.

FuelScience
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FuelScience

2018: The Douro: Portugal's River of Gold & Spain w/Madeira extension, Vantage Douro Serenity (April)
2017: Burgundy & Provence, Avalon Poetry II
2016: Canals, Vineyards, and Paris, Avalon Affinity II
2015: Switzerland & the Heart of the Rhine & Moselle, Vantage River Navigator
2014: Tulips & Windmills, Viking Atla
2013: Romantic Danube, Viking MS Vienna (leased)
2012: Cities of Light, Viking Sky
#2
389 Posts
Joined Jan 2016
Thanks. I have searched these forums for all the info I can get about Avalon, and although most is good, it's usually an odd comment or quite old. We are looking to book our first cruise on them as they seem to be the line I think we would be most comfortable with. I am looking to hear from other's who have sailed with them recently to see if they are still as recommended as they were.
#3
Oahu, Hawaii
868 Posts
Joined Jul 2012
I haven't sailed with them yet but it's just around the corner. I will be sharing as much as I can. We are doing Prague to Paris on the Artistry II. We leave July 18th but don't pick up the cruise until the 26th.
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My blog: http://rebelsouladventures.com/
4-3-2019: Avalon Siem Reap (Hanoi to Bangkok)
4-14-2019: Myanmar on the Myanmar (Cancelled )
7-18-2016 Avalon Artistry II (Prague to Paris)
09-22-2012 Westerdam (Alaska Inside Passage)
01-04-2010 Pride of America (Hawaii)
#4
Harrisburg, PA
2,055 Posts
Joined Jan 2001
We did Avalon Paris to Normandy two years ago and have booked the twelve day Basel to Amsterdam for this October. I can't think of anything that needed to be changed or improved on the Normandy cruise. We loved the boat, the food, the staff, and the excursions. We got great prices by booking early for both trips. Fellow passengers were delightful and we dined with different people every night. Mostly British and American.

I read on a different thread that someone complained about being held in a crowd in a hallway before dinner. That was not our experience at all! Every evening before dinner we met in the lounge to get information about the next day's actitivities. Then we proceeded to the dining room. They was no feeling of a herd rushing to get a table. Good heavens, there was seating for all and the kitchen never ran out of anything. Dinners were relaxed, and wine was available. Why would anyone need to rush?

We previously sailed in Europe with Peter Diehlmann and Uniworld. They were also very nice, but we felt more at home with Avalon. We have sailed 30+ times with Princess, HAL and Celebrity, but really enjoy the itineraries and pace of river cruising.
#5
SW Pa.
35 Posts
Joined Nov 2015
We totally agree with our love of Avalon! We sailed with them two years ago on the Tulips of Northern Holland on the Poetry 11. Our entire vacation from beginning to end was exceptional. We are sailing on the Imagery 11 in July on the Romantic Rhine itinerary (only 10 more weeks). i am very detail oriented and would love to hear more about this itinerary and ship . Any information would be greatly appreciated!
#6
61 Posts
Joined May 2011
Glad to find this thread. We are doing our first riverboat cruise with Avalon in August, highlights of Germany 2016, Passau to Basel. Would love to hear from anyone that has done this cruise or a similar one. I understand that riverboat cruising is a little more relaxed from ocean cruises. Is it true my husband will not need a jacket or tie for any of the dinners?
Thanks and look forward to chatting.
Karen
#7
265 Posts
Joined Mar 2012
Glad to see the thread as we'll be cruising soon. It's our 8th river cruise but 1st with Avalon so we're anxious to see how it goes. We love river cruising and we will have a good time I'm sure. But it's already a hassle having to be out of our hotel (actually closer to the ship than Avalon's) before we can board with Avalon. Jet lag hits us hard so we don't feel like spending the whole day out at the start of a trip. We'd rather relax in the lounge till our room is ready. We've found this possible with other lines. Other than that we are really looking forward to our cruise and will post as we go or after depending on internet. We'll follow this thread with great interest.
#8
SW Pa.
35 Posts
Joined Nov 2015
Sorry I must have hit a wrong button. Was trying to reply to disnemimi and wasn't sure what to do therefore somehow I got a duplicate of her post .
River cruising is a lot more casual than ocean cruises. Men don't wear jackets and women wear nice blouses with slacks for dinner. You might bring 1 or 2 slightly dressy tops for welcome and farewell dinners. The entire atmosphere is very relaxed. I'm sure you will love it and will look for your next cruise when you get home from your first one
#9
New York
9,389 Posts
Joined Aug 2011
Originally posted by cruisinsouis
Sorry I must have hit a wrong button. Was trying to reply to disnemimi and wasn't sure what to do therefore somehow I got a duplicate of her post .
River cruising is a lot more casual than ocean cruises. Men don't wear jackets and women wear nice blouses with slacks for dinner. You might bring 1 or 2 slightly dressy tops for welcome and farewell dinners. The entire atmosphere is very relaxed. I'm sure you will love it and will look for your next cruise when you get home from your first one
You must have hit the "quote" button on the right rather than the "Post Reply" button on the left. This is actually a good thing to do when you are replying to someone, as it makes it clear which post you are replying to. If you look at the quoted text that populates in your reply window, you may be able to strip out all but the part you are referring to [this is especially helpful if you are replying to a post with lots of photos: no need to fill up everyone's screen with duplicates!]
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I am not an employee of Cruise Critic and I don't speak for Cruise Critic. All opinions are mine alone. Also, I'm only a Host on the various River forums -- everywhere else I'm "just plain Jazz."

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#10
603 Posts
Joined May 2005
We have cruised AMA and also two with Uniworld. Last year there was a great deal Paris to Normandy on the Avalon Creativity. It was our best friend's 50th wedding Anniversary and they have never been on a river cruise .Well we booked at the last minute and it was sensational. We thought we might be disappointed after being on Uniworld but Avalon exceeded our expectations and would definitely book with them again. The food, excurisions, accommodations everything was wonderful. We especially enjoyed our nightly entertainment in the lounge a gentlemen from Bulgaria sorry I have forgotten his name. He made our trip ..I think Uniworld was little more upscale and maybe 5 star will give Avalon a 4 star. . Saying that I will book with Avalon again as my first choice. No need to worry about what to wear at dinner. Some men wore jackets but very few. Women nice tops with black pants will work. I brought two dress but really wear what is most comfortable. It was Sept. Very cool mornings I didn't bring enough warm jackets. Bring scarfs and fleece jackets and as the cruise director stated dress like and onion.. Just start peeling when the weather gets warmer..
Have a great time.
#11
115 Posts
Joined Jan 2008
We are also on the Highlights of Germany cruise late August. We have done many Caribbean cruises but have not done a river cruise. When should we receive info on tours offered by Avalon? Do most people do the free tour in the morning and skip the paid tours or are they worthwhile?
#12
Conway, AR USA
1,869 Posts
Joined Jan 2001
We have done 2 cruises with Uniworld and just finished our second with Avalon, having already booked another with them in 2017. We love both companies, but honestly what has sold us on Avalon are the beautiful "suite" cabins. We love the wall of windows and the configuration of the cabins. Our most recent was the inaugural on Imagery II and there was nothing that we could suggest to improve our experience. The staff was outstanding, food unbelievable (both taste and presentation) and no, men do not need to wear sports jackets for dinner, even on the special evenings. We saw one sports jacket and that was probably because there was a large group who had never sailed on a river cruise and it was a carryover impression from the big ship cruises. If you are considering Avalon, I wouldn't hesitate to tell you to do it. Cole
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B. Cole
#13
Ohio
784 Posts
Joined Apr 2009
I took my first river cruise - Basel to Amsterdam, on the Felicity in 2012. I love Avalon & was very impressed with everything from the cabin to the crew to the service to the food. It was a wonderful vacation. I'm leaving at the end of the month on the Creativity for Paris to Normandy. I already have my travel packet and am getting excited. One thing I like about sailing on the older ships is there are only 58 passengers on our sailing. It should be wonderful & quite an intimate experience.
#14
Oahu, Hawaii
868 Posts
Joined Jul 2012
Originally posted by terpshockey77
We are also on the Highlights of Germany cruise late August. We have done many Caribbean cruises but have not done a river cruise. When should we receive info on tours offered by Avalon? Do most people do the free tour in the morning and skip the paid tours or are they worthwhile?
Did you register for your "MyAvalon" account? When you go to your itinerary it will give you the day by day itinerary via the "Overview." On that page you will see "Excursions" which will give you a list of the potential additional excursions you can buy.

Back on the main menu, you will see "My Excursions." You will see a date when you can buy your additional excursions there. Once you are able to buy them they will populate and give you the opportunity to purchase. That was at the 90 day mark.
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My blog: http://rebelsouladventures.com/
4-3-2019: Avalon Siem Reap (Hanoi to Bangkok)
4-14-2019: Myanmar on the Myanmar (Cancelled )
7-18-2016 Avalon Artistry II (Prague to Paris)
09-22-2012 Westerdam (Alaska Inside Passage)
01-04-2010 Pride of America (Hawaii)
#15
Ocala, FL
6 Posts
Joined Apr 2012
In 2013 we took the Normandy/Paris cruise with Avalon and thoroughly enjoyed it. We had a number of Australians on our cruise as well as an Irish couple and several Canadians. We very much enjoyed the variety of nationalities around the dinner table and their viewpoints on WWII, which is quite a focus of this tour. We found the crew very pleasant and most were very comfortable speaking English. The captain took a couple tours through his area and the chef walked us through the kitchen. This was not case on a subsequent cruise on with another cruise line. So enjoy Avalon; we did.
#16
Sydney Australia
181 Posts
Joined Nov 2011
Originally posted by YoungDubFan
I took my first river cruise - Basel to Amsterdam, on the Felicity in 2012. I love Avalon & was very impressed with everything from the cabin to the crew to the service to the food. It was a wonderful vacation. I'm leaving at the end of the month on the Creativity for Paris to Normandy. I already have my travel packet and am getting excited. One thing I like about sailing on the older ships is there are only 58 passengers on our sailing. It should be wonderful & quite an intimate experience.
How did you find out that there would only be 58 passengers on your cruise? Would be interested in finding out. We are looking at the Paris to Normandy & also the 8 day Rhine cruise or the Rhine/Moselle 13 day cruise for late 2017. We love the layout of their cabins on the new ships, but if there are less passengers on their older ships these may be a consideration. We sailed on the Vista in 2013/2014 on their Christmas New Year cruise and loved it!!!!
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Debbie
Sun Princess - Coral Coast 22/10-30/10/2018
Sun Princess - Western Australia Getaway 18/10/-22/102018
Avalon Artistry II - Rhine & Moselle Amsterdam/Basel 12/10-24/10/2017
MS Rotterdam - Montreal/Boston 1-8 October 2016
RV Jahan - Ho Chi Minh/Siem Reap 27/9/2014
Avalon Vista - Frankfurt/Vienna 22/12/2013
P&O Pacific Pearl - Australia Day 2013
Louis Cristal - Istanbul/Athens July-August 2012



#17
Nashville, Tennessee USA
1,123 Posts
Joined Mar 2014
Originally posted by ikesyd
How did you find out that there would only be 58 passengers on your cruise?
Don't know how YoungDubFan is doing it, but you can go to the Avalon web site and find your cruise and click the "Reserve Now" button. Proceed as if you were going to reserve the cruise. After a couple of screens you'll see a screen that allows you to pick your cabin. It shows you Deck Plans with all the reserved cabins shown in grey and not available for reservations. Count the grey cabins and multiply by two and you've got a pretty good idea of how many people are going on your cruise.

FuelScience
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FuelScience

2018: The Douro: Portugal's River of Gold & Spain w/Madeira extension, Vantage Douro Serenity (April)
2017: Burgundy & Provence, Avalon Poetry II
2016: Canals, Vineyards, and Paris, Avalon Affinity II
2015: Switzerland & the Heart of the Rhine & Moselle, Vantage River Navigator
2014: Tulips & Windmills, Viking Atla
2013: Romantic Danube, Viking MS Vienna (leased)
2012: Cities of Light, Viking Sky
#18
Oahu, Hawaii
868 Posts
Joined Jul 2012
So far there are only 52 on mine. I looked at one going in just over a month, same route and there are only 6 cabins booked. Will they really take a cruise ship out for 12 pax?
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My blog: http://rebelsouladventures.com/
4-3-2019: Avalon Siem Reap (Hanoi to Bangkok)
4-14-2019: Myanmar on the Myanmar (Cancelled )
7-18-2016 Avalon Artistry II (Prague to Paris)
09-22-2012 Westerdam (Alaska Inside Passage)
01-04-2010 Pride of America (Hawaii)
#19
Pacific North West
4,384 Posts
Joined Jan 2015
Originally posted by Rebel54
So far there are only 52 on mine. I looked at one going in just over a month, same route and there are only 6 cabins booked. Will they really take a cruise ship out for 12 pax?

I find that very hard to believe. They certainly could have a group on this sailing and cabins have not been assigned, leaving everything available should additional reservations be made. There would be a real "fire sale" if there was a risk of an empty boat. JMHO
#20
Oahu, Hawaii
868 Posts
Joined Jul 2012
Originally posted by JVilleGal
I find that very hard to believe. They certainly could have a group on this sailing and cabins have not been assigned, leaving everything available should additional reservations be made. There would be a real "fire sale" if there was a risk of an empty boat. JMHO
I would hope that they would but when you look at the Westbound Central European Experience for 28 Jun 18 there are currently only 9 cabins booked. I would love to get in on one of their fire sales for sure!!
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My blog: http://rebelsouladventures.com/
4-3-2019: Avalon Siem Reap (Hanoi to Bangkok)
4-14-2019: Myanmar on the Myanmar (Cancelled )
7-18-2016 Avalon Artistry II (Prague to Paris)
09-22-2012 Westerdam (Alaska Inside Passage)
01-04-2010 Pride of America (Hawaii)