0203 848 3600

Over 1.5 Million Happy Cruise Customers

{0} out of 10 Rated Excellent
ATOL Protected
02038483600

Cruise Blog

Cruise in France with Avalon Waterways

clock 22nd August 2018 | comment0 Comments

Fortunately, our very own Jack Lee from the sales team had the opportunity to experience a river cruise with Avalon Waterways, here’s what he thought of the trip.

 

 

Arrival

The arrival into Paris was quick, and we were greeted by the transport team who led us to the transfer from the airport to the river cruise port, which was about 45 minutes. Upon arrival to the ship, the first noticeable thing would be that there are only 3 decks. The ship holds 120 passengers in total, the entrance might look small but there is ample space for everyone. The gangway is small, and the ship is not located in a big port. Instead, you are seconds away from getting into Paris city centre when walking from the ship.

Cabins

Once checked in, we were able to go to our cabins and get to see them for the first time. The French Balcony is a very nice sized room; to the left when you open the door is the bathroom with a shower. On the right-hand side is a large mirror, which makes the room seem even bigger, and a large dressing table. The beds are set up as twins, but these can be made into a double if you wanted to. The balcony doors are floor to ceiling and can be opened half way.

 

 

Dining

Avalon Waterway’s dining is set every night at 7pm with around five exquisite courses. If you arrive any later than scheduled you may miss a course, which you aren’t able to request again. Having said this, there are always extra appetisers supplied for passengers in the evening. Drinks like wine, beers and soft drinks are included at dinner and lunch times, but other than dining and lunchtime you will have to purchase drinks.

Onboard Activities

There are many ways to enjoy yourself on the vessel, and when in port you are able to use one of the six onboard bikes to cycle around independently. If you stay on the ship, there is evening entertainment every day, which is held in the main public lounge. On the top deck, there are plenty of sun loungers that you can relax on. There is also a hot tub, which can be very relaxing even in the heat. There is no swimming pool onboard.

 

 

Excursions

Passengers usually get together at the nightly cruise director speech, at which you’d find out about the excursions available on the next day. Most are included in your sailing but you can purchase some extra special excursions.

The excursions are great; there was one in particular that really stood out for me – the trip to the landing beaches of World War II. We started at Pegasus Bridge where the British invasion happened, walked around a beautiful museum where you learn about the battle that took place there. Next was the crematorium, where the sheer amount of people who lost their lives in the war really hits you. This was such a beautiful and thought-provoking place, as you walk around seeing name after name. Then we went to an area where the British army had come onto the beaches, it was amazing to see some of the man-made piers/platforms. The final part of the tour was a visit to the Canadian landing beaches. Here we went to a museum and watched a video after a tour. The film shows some original footage, and the touching moment of the film comes at the end when it shows the fallen soldiers walking behind you on the beach just outside where you take a walk yourself.

 

 

Would a river cruise be for you? The option to have almost all your excursions included is amazing, as is the quality of food and intimate style of the ship. Take a look at our range of Avalon Waterways cruises to see where you could explore on a river cruise.



Cruising with Jane McDonald

clock 2nd February 2018 | comment0 Comments

Updated April 2019

Cruising with Jane McDonald is back!

Cruising with Jane McDonald on Channel 5 follows everyone’s favourite songstress onboard cruises across the world’s oceans and rivers. After voyaging to the Greek islands with Celestyal Cruises, Portugal's Douro river with Emerald Waterways, and exploring India's Golden Triangle and the Ganges with Uniworld, what else will Jane discover this time? Make sure to tune in and find out on Cruising with Jane McDonald!

Check out more info per episode below-

 

Jane McDonald

 

Jane McDonald

 

Hailing from Wakefield, Jane McDonald is as famous for her appearances on legendary daytime TV show Loose Women as she is for her singing career. Starting out as a cruise singer in the 1990s and finding fame on the hit BBC1 docusoap The Cruise, Jane’s history of cruising makes her perfectly qualified to go on trips all over the world in order to selflessly show the British public what cruising options are out there for us. With her cheeky northern charm, down to earth airs and genuine joy for all things cruise, there’s surely no one better than Jane to present cruising holidays to the nation.

 

The Show

 

Jane’s series of Cruising with Jane McDonald has been unbelievably popular so far. At almost two million, nearly as many Brits tuned in for the Christmas Special as went cruising in 2017! So far, Jane’s been everywhere from the Hebrides to the Southeast Asia, often on packages and ships available to book with Iglu Cruise.

 

Series Six: Airing April 19th 2019 at 9pm

 

Sailing into series six you can join the adventure on Channel 5 to the rivers of India including the magnificent Ganges with Uniworld River Cruises.

As series 6 continues we follow Jane to the Secrets of the Douro, a European river cruise with Emerald Waterways, stopping off at a range of Portuguese gems. At a number of ports along the way to Spain, the songstress discovers the history of the stunning Douro through tile painting, a tour of Casa De Mateus in Vila Real, and a visit to a Portuguese custard tart factory in Lisbon.

Secrets of the Douro is a magnificent way to explore the river across eight days of unrivalled cruising. Starting and ending in Porto, you'll visit villages, vineyards, and the city of Salamanca. You can find more fantastic Douro river cruises here.

For past episodes, catch up with Cruising with Jane McDonald on Channel 5's My5.


 

Series One: February - March 2017

In the first episode of the first series, Jane embarked on a fantastic Caribbean cruise with MSC Cruises, onboard MSC Divina. Here she was lucky enough to swim with the sharks on the island of St Maarten, and explore the oldest Baptist church in the Bahamas. Then came a Hebridean adventure with just six other cruisers, before Jane’s first river cruise on the Danube which included stops in the beautiful cities of Vienna and Budapest.

 

 

The fourth and final episode of series one had Jane enjoying a truly incredible cruise, which many would consider a once in a lifetime holiday; in Canada and Alaska. As well as seeing the amazing wildlife and gorgeous scenery, Jane was even able to have a go at dog-sledding on an ice field!

Series Two: September - December 2017

After the success of series one, four more episodes and even a Christmas special were commissioned for series two. In episode one, Jane embarked on a brilliant Baltics cruise aboard the stunning Viking Sky – a truly luxurious vessel. Cities included St Petersburg and Stockholm, for some culture and a lot of fun. In the next episode, we followed Jane around the Mediterranean as she stood in awe at world famous sites including the magnificent Sagrada Familia in Barcelona, and then through France along the Rhone in episode three, with a few glasses of wine along the way!

 

 

The fourth episode was located in a country that sits on many a bucket list – Cuba. Here Jane was welcomed with open arms by locals and enjoyed a little salsa, some incredible food, historic buildings, and of course the iconic cars. All this and a brilliant Cuban house party too.

Series Three: February - March 2018

In the first episode of series 3, Jane went off up the California coast with Princess Cruise’s Ruby Princess. She saw a range of fantastic places including Hollywood’s walk of fame, the Golden Gate Bridge, and famous cable cars of San Francisco. Discover more about Princess Cruises in Los Angeles and more of North America. In the second episode, Jane went off to Iceland, truly a land of unrivalled natural beauty and phenomena. Here she took in a spot of whale-watching, had a dip in the famous hot thermal geysers, and saw the awe-inspiring Northern Lights.

 

 

In the third episode, Jane head east for a river cruise along the exotic Mekong River. We followed Jane through both Vietnam and Cambodia aboard the Amadara, seeing some wonderful locations such as Angkor Wat, one of the oldest religious monuments in the world. In the fourth and final episode, Jane steamed up the legendary Mississippi River. Starting her trip in New Orleans, Jane took in the jazz scene and raucous atmosphere of the city before hopping aboard the American Steamboat Company’s American Queen - the world’s largest paddle-steam boat. To cap it off with her usual musical finale, Jane made a pilgrimage to Graceland, once the home of, but now shrine to, the one and only Elvis Presley.

Series Four: June 2018

The fourth series sees Jane travel down under in a two-parter for episodes one and two. In the first episode, we follow as she begins her voyage of Australia and New Zealand on Holland America Line’s ms Noordam. We start with a bus tour of Sydney cruising past all the iconic landmarks, and a visit to the Sydney Opera House. Then, she’s on the ship for a trip to Tasmania to see the unique wildlife before heading up to New Zealand. In the second episode, we go to the North Island to see Wellington before getting stuck into some quad-biking with backdrops as thrilling as the ride. This leg’s finale is a meeting with a Maori tribe before jumping in a helicopter to see Auckland.

 

 

Meanwhile, in the third episode, Jane jets off to South America for a cruise in a super-luxury Silversea cruise ship. On the way, she sees some Banksy street art and heads to Chile to see glaciers and enjoy a whiskey cooled with cubes direct from the ice-sheet. As if that isn’t breathtakingly cool enough, we then stop by Patagonia before heading to the iconic Falkland Islands.

 

Series Five: December 2018 - current

The hit series came back with a bang, as Jane cruised with the fantastic Princess Cruises around the west coast of Australia. We discovered more about one of their ships, the Sun Princess, as she dined in the luxurious Chef’s Table restaurant, and enjoyed a wide array of entertainment – including an onboard wedding!

 

During her trip down under, Jane saw thrilling destinations such as Geraldton, where she took in the stunning Pink Lake, and then Fremantle, a gorgeous port city with plenty of maritime history. Finally, Jane visited Albany and Broome, both boasting impressive coastlines and exciting marine life.

In episode two of series 5, Jane explored some gorgeous Greek islands on a seven-night cruise with Celesytal Cruises. Here Jane discovered more about this popular holiday destination, such as Santorini and Mykonos, including all the fun things to see and do in this part of the world - from taking in astounding history to trying your hand at making cheese.



Introducing A-ROSA river cruises

clock 1st June 2017 | comment0 Comments

A-ROSA has carefully crafted a cruising style that is casual, yet luxurious, feel good, yet rich and diverse. Bringing to life the romance of river cruising, A-ROSA’s ships include sophisticated refinements, ample spa and wellness facilities and more to make moments spent onboard, extra special.

 

Fantastic spa & wellness facilities


Definitely worth a special mention, SPA-ROSA is one of the largest spas of the river cruise market and the perfect place to recharge your batteries. Features to look forward to include the sauna, which has panoramic views of the river, making it a spa visit to remember.

The top deck pools invite you to watch the world go by as you take a leisurely dip. A-ROSA is one of the few river cruise lines to feature a top deck pool as well as a whirlpool.

Work up an appetite at the well-equipped gym either on your own or with a personal trainer, indulge in a beauty treatment, pay a visit to the massage therapist – or do all of the above!

a rosa

 

Accommodating dining options


A-ROSA provides many ways to please your palette, but you might be interested to learn that for breakfast and lunch, you can customise your meals by visiting the live cooking stations as well as learning from the chefs in action. Not like a traditional buffet, the dining room is separate to the food area, so you can enjoy your food in a more intimate atmosphere.

Of course, for dinner you can enjoy a sophisticated four-course meal, paired with complementary wines handpicked by expert sommeliers. Enjoy flavoursome regional cuisine with fresh ingredients.

 

Great for families


Some cruise lines offer half price kids offers or third and fourth passenger discounts from time to time, but you’ll be hard-pressed to find a cruise line so accommodating as to let children up to 15 years old to cruise for free. Not only does A-ROSA give children all the same complimentary All Inclusive benefits as adults, but some cabins have sofa beds which are perfect for families and are less common on river cruise ships.

 

Premium All Inclusive


Your holiday with A-ROSA includes UK flights with VIP home pick-up (up to 100 miles from the airport or train station), full board dining, All Inclusive drinks (including cocktails, fine wines and bottled water) and complimentary WiFi. This makes A-ROSA one of the most inclusive river cruise lines.

 



Why not let A-ROSA be your window to Europe’s most captivating cities? See cruises with A-ROSA.





See more on your river cruise with Scenic Enrich

clock 4th October 2016 | comment0 Comments

Going above and beyond to provide exceptional experiences is something that Scenic strives to do all the time. With Scenic, your river cruise provides the best highlights and most unforgettable opportunities to see Europe in a way that no other river cruise line can. Aptly named Scenic Enrich, these specially crafted and tailored experiences are included in the cost of your cruise, giving you special access to a range of fantastic locations.

The Scenic Enrich programme ensures that any Scenic cruise you embark on includes an Enrich experience ranging from a private tour in a castle to dinner with a local family or wine tasting in a picturesque chateau. There’s something for everyone with Scenic Enrich, and here’s just a few examples.

Avignon Be treated to a gala dinner and performance in the Pope’s Palace.
Vienna A private concert in the grand Palais Liechtenstein.
Portugal Visit the Burmester Cellars for dinner and traditional Fado music.

What makes these experiences special is the sense of true exclusivity and luxury that Scenic crafts into them, from the stunning locations and venues (many of which are often UNESCO or World Heritage-listed), the sumptuous food or wine to the immersive performances and entertainment and the genuine passion and companionship of all involved.

A Medieval Evening at Marksburg Castle

One of Scenic’s most incredible experiences is the evening at Marksburg Castle, where guests enjoy a traditional medieval banquet in its grand hall. Overlooking the Rhine River on a hill near Braubach, Marksburg Castle is one of the region’s most famous and recognisable landmarks. Built in the 12th century, the castle served as a fortress protecting Braubach and the local area and was truly formidable in its many battles, never once falling to invading armies.

Formerly of the Holy Roman Empire and now acting as head office of the German Castle Association, the castle is open for public touring and sightseeing but available exclusively to Scenic guests is the opportunity to enter further into the great hall for a grand medieval feast. Enjoy sumptuous local specialties and flowing red wine while performers entertain you with traditional acts including minstrels, court jesters, players and bards.

Scenic Rouge in Lyon

Scenic Rouge is one of the newest Scenic Rich encounters and invites Scenic guests to a spectacular French extravaganza. Guests who choose this enriching experience can enjoy an exclusive gala packed full of dazzling performances including the acclaimed French Can Can. The special event takes place underneath a decked out big-top onshore in Lyon. A must for anyone sailing the south of Frane on a river cruise with Scenic.

 



See more with Scenic Enrich on a Scenic river cruise



Paris to Normandy’s Landing Beaches onboard Avalon Tapestry 2

clock 8th June 2016 | comment0 Comments

Kathleen from our dedicated river cruise commercial team enjoyed a river cruise in France onboard Avalon Tapestry 2 with Avalon Waterways, read about her experience and first impressions below.

The ship was lovely, the food was lovely, the crew were just extremely welcoming and friendly and I met some amazing people.

Occasionally with river cruises there are complications that arise which cause changes to the itinerary, and I got to witness one of these complications first hand. as there was going to be strikes in the locks and docks, the cruise director had to make the decision for the itinerary to be sped up, meaning that we had to meet the ship in Mantes La Jolie as it picked up passengers who went on the excursion to Rouen, then we cruised on to Conflans-Saite-Honorine through lunch where the ship docked for the night.

Our Cabin
The cabin as I had expected was really luxurious, with supplied bathrobes, slippers and L'Occitane toiletries. What I especially liked about the cabin was where the beds were facing the window instead of facing away from it, you could just lie on your bed and watch the ever changing scenery along the river bank as you sail to the next port of call, you could even have the floor to ceiling window open to let in some fresh air – or if you’d rather there was a seating area right in-front of the window where you could sit and read a book whilst enjoy the nice breeze from the window as you cruise along the river.

avalon-tapestry-2-cabin

avalon-tapestry-2-bathroom

avalon-tapestry-2-inside-cabin

avalon-tapestry-2-inside-cabin


There were many other things the cabin had to offer such as a safe, a fair size wardrobe a mini fridge (which was stocked with drinks, and weren’t badly priced) and a hairdryer.

Food
The food was also very nice. Lunch and breakfast were both buffets with quite a variety of options of food to pick from, and the options changed every day - there was also if you preferred a menu in which you could order from. Dinner was always a three course meal with a starter, a main and a pudding. Once again there was a set menu that stayed the same every day, but there was also an option that changed daily.

avalon-tapestry-2-food


Excursions
Every evening just before dinner and usually just after or before happy hour (an hour when cocktails were half price) the cruise director would talk over the excursions for the next day and what’s going to happen. Also, every evening a leaflet would be put on the beds in every cabin to outline everything that was happening the next day. This was very helpful as it meant that you could carry it around with you throughout the day and refer to it. Each day there was the choice between included excursion, and on some days there was even an extra excursion with an added cost. Some of the included excursions we went on where a tour of the Notre Dame Cathedral, and a tour of the Château de Malmaison.

Overall the cruise was definitely an experience that I won’t be forgetting anytime soon. I personally went on the cruise not really sure on what to expect, but also not expecting much. It was a lot better than I had anticipated and it was certainly nice to get away and just sit back and chill and do stuff like relax on the sky deck, maybe even play one of the board games available in the back lounge, or even read a book whilst sipping on a cup of tea whilst eating a doughnut. After this experience, I definitely would go on a river cruise again, and I would highly recommend Avalon Waterways.

Have you sailed with Avalon Waterways? Tell us about your experience in the comments below



Book with Confidence

We are ATOL Holders and members of ABTA for your financial protection.


Price Match Guarantee
Search Cruises
Your Shortlist

You do not currently have any cruises in your shortlist.


What our customers say


"I booked a Fred Olsen cruise with IGLU last month and was so impressed by the service I received. The staff member I spoke to was Kimberley and she was exemplary. Capable, kind, professional, patient, friendly and knowledgeable. She went through every step of the way calmly and thoroughly. IGLU were recommended to me by friends and I have no hesitation in passing the recommendation along. Well done IGLU and thank you. "

Christina
(March 2019)

"So easy to deal with, I studied the Cruise I wanted, did my research with different company's and returned to Iglu. I had three quotes matching Iglu’s cost, but with one phone call they beat the price themselves by £40 without me even asking, how easy was that! "

Gary
(February 2019)


Read more feedback