Scenic Review - Gems of the Danube

Diane and Willy have recently returned from our popular Gems of the Danube river cruise from Nuremberg to Budapest, and have kindly shared their thoughts with us.

Our week-long cruise with Scenic from Nuremburg to Budapest was a great success.  We experienced exceptionally hot weather on 2 of the days and merely very hot weather on the others! 

Scenic Amber carries 171 passengers and was full for our cruise. The crew were nearly all East European, with English as their common language which some spoke better than others!  They were all cheerful and very obliging – particularly Zoltan, our Butler, who arrived each morning on the dot of 6 o’clock with a pot of tea for us! Many of the crew appeared to multi-task, turning their hands to waiting or barista-ing, (is there such a word?). Our cabin was kept spotlessly clean and any laundry we put out had a turnround time of 4 or 5 hours.

We have nothing but praise for the variations in daily excursions offered by Scenic.  Some examples apart from local excursions:  35 km e bike ride, tours to Salzburg, Bratislava and Cesky Krumlov and shopping and cooking with the chef.   The evening entertainment was similarly varied.  Over the week we had an Oompah band, ‘slap dancing’ by a group of 8 men, an after-dinner show by the crew, a balletic couple who danced divinely and then showed us how to dance the Viennese waltz and a magical evening concert at the Viennese Palais Liechenstein. On the final night in Budapest, having moored right outside the magnificent Houses of Parliament, we were taken up (or maybe down, not sure) the Danube at dusk to see all the lights before returning to the mooring. 

Breakfasts were excellent, lunch was a choice between the more formal 3 courses in the dining room or a ‘light lunch’ in the Amber Lounge.  Dinner was usually 5 courses, but portion control was very good.  Choices of main courses were also good.  The big disappointment was the lack of quality of the wines.  We and the other dozen or so guests with whom we became friendly really didn’t find one that we would have chosen to buy if we had been shopping. During the evenings, part of the Amber Lounge was converted to the Portobello Restaurant, seating about 12.  Similarly, a part of the main dining room ‘became’  Restaurant La Rive for about 16 people which was really, really special with gourmet courses, each with appropriate wines (and these were good) and almost personal attention.  Everyone we spoke to had high praise for both specialist restaurants.    However, not enough information was given that places needed to be booked by one’s Butler.  We only knew because we had been on Scenic in April.     

Check-in and check-out were handled very efficiently.

Diane & Willy 

To browse our complete range of 5-star luxury river cruises, visit the Scenic homepage or call us on 0808 252 5111.