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Everything posted by knoxclone

  1. In Bruges, all coaches must offload passengers outside the city center ( believe was about a 15 minute walk to the city center - we were on viking river gentle walkers group so YMMV.
  2. I've not sailed Avalon, but our AMA cruise last year had a designated fitness crew member who led bike excursions most days, escorted hikes through vineyards and offered group classes such as Yoga and pilates. There was a small work out room with treadmill, free weights and a bike. As a non drinker, I was also pleased with the selection of mocktails, and other non alcoholic options.
  3. I suggest getting mobility assistance at AMS - they have the carts as well as wheelchair assist. AMS is a REALLY large airport.
  4. I recommend always using third party insurance unless you MUST use cruise line insurance for specific reasons (World Cruise, aging out of third party CFAR, etc.) Almost always better coverage, less expensive and you will not be subject to vouchers vs. cash compensation.
  5. If you are interested in the Anne Frank House, be advised you have to purchase tickets well in advance, and they are limited in numbers each day. Agree that a visit to Keukenhof is wonderful, even if you are not "into" gardening. I'm not, but ended up really enjoying the visit, There is also a small tulip museum just down the block from the Anne Frank House which give a quick over view of the tulip industry and its importance to the Dutch economy. 5 Euro entrance fee and worth it IMHO, especially if you don't make the trip to the Keukenhof. If Viking is still offering the WW2 tour in Colmar, I recommend it. Regarding food - try rijstafle - Very well known in Amsterdam - it's Indonesian cuisine, basically a large number of small plates with such as items curries, grilled, meats and vegetables and you make your own "rice bowl". Best shared with with several people.
  6. I've cruised AMAwaterways, Viking and Uniworld multiple times - and I would gladly sail any of the three again - and hope to try others such as Tauck or Scenic in the future. All have their pluses and minus based on your personal preferences... Most all of the cruise lines provided a similar product, it just depends on the bells and whistles. Some travelers dislike the ship's decor, the shore side payment policies, or don't like the excursion or beverage package inclusions. Regardless, a GOOD travel advisor will not recommend a specific company based on commission levels, but rather will suggest a cruise based on your preferences and requirements. As many have said, start with your destination, and then decide what is most important to you.
  7. I believe because hallway is offset on those floors with the French balcony rooms smaller due to the balcony rooms on the other side of the hall, while lower level rooms, w are the same size on both sides of hallway.
  8. Another option near the Centraal train station is the Park Plaza Victoria (Radisson). Newly refurbished rooms, and in the same price point as the Doubletree. Stayed there in February and enjoyed it.
  9. When we were in Strasbourg earlier this year, there were several wine stores within a block or two of the cathedral, and all were offering tastings.
  10. I travelled on AMA last February, and while the weather was cold, and often damp (though we did enjoy a few days of glorious sunshine!) the weather was offset by the fact that the museums and restaurants were visited by mostly locals, and therefore it was wonderful to visit without the crowds. We knew going in it was not going to be about the scenery - other than the castles and cathedrals. My advice is dress for the weather (layers!) and realize that some of the smaller towns do "roll up the carpets" after the holidays until mid spring - so do your research on what will be available and open so you are not disappointed.
  11. We did the Belize snorkel excursion from the Panama Canal cruise itinerary , and it was a from dive boat out to the reef area. No beach. However, the horseback excursion in Roatan included about 90 min of beach time at a small resort after the ride.
  12. agree - AMA and Scenic both are great choices as well. All deliver a a comparable product, so it often comes down to your preferred itinerary and personal choices regarding decor and pax numbers.
  13. AMA Waterways often waives single supplements and even has 5 & 7 top tables in the dining room to encourage solo travelers.
  14. We sailed w the WWII Museum last fall and the Joie de Vivre was fabulous - so wish we could have used it as our "base" for the entire tour!
  15. I believe the offices in Atlanta are are private commercial services affiliated with the official Chinese consulate in Houston. You can request expedited services - but be warned they are very expensive.
  16. Agree - I was not really interested in visiting -but the guide (a young man dressed in tux tails, & top hat) was outstanding and the excursion ended up being a fascinating and enjoyable afternoon.
  17. We prearranged a taxi in Budapest - it was about 30 minutes from airport to our hotel - the Marriott. Driver was prompt and gave us a running commentary on what we were seeing as we drive. The tram system is quite easy to use and quick and efficient - the tracks were just along the river and visible from both the ship - and the hotel. We rode it several times, once down to the Parliament for our tour and once "just to experience it". We were able to buy the tickets from the hotel desk - although that was in 2018, so they may have upgraded the system by now.
  18. Agree with @Roz Budapest is definitely worth more time. Passau is a lovely city in its own right, but there is so much to explore in Budapest.
  19. While I love Viking, I would suggest you look at AMAwaterways as well, they cater to solo traveller, and actually have 5 and 7 top tables in the dining room to accommodate solo travelers to join a table.
  20. That may be true..luckily, I have not had that experience. My suggestion is if there is a "must do" I would ask the guide prior to leaving on the excursion.
  21. Viking has always offered the "Gentle Walkers" group on the past four cruises I have taken. You cover the same territory, just at a slower pace, and often avoiding inclines or stairs w/o handrails. Only difference is that sometimes your free or shopping time was shortened
  22. Akershus Fortress also has a very interesting resistance museum.
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