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Danube Delights with Emerald Waterways

Wednesday 14 August 2019

Our Product and Marketing Manager, Kathryn, recently enjoyed Emerald Waterways' Danube Delights cruise from Budapest to Nuremberg. Read her exclusive review:

I was looking forward to joining Emerald Destiny for my first Emerald Waterways river cruise and as soon as I saw her docked across from the grand Budapest Parliament, I couldn't wait to get onboard.

Emerald Destiny Lounge Panoramic Balcony Suite Swimming Pool Sun Deck Sun Deck Gym

The Emerald Waterways ships are all decorated in a modern and contemporary style, and the public areas are spacious and welcoming. The sun was shining throughout our Danube river cruise so, during the day when guests weren't on excursions, most relaxed on the Sun Deck as it had plenty of seating and shade. In the evening, after a delicious meal in the Reflections Restaurant, we would enjoy a drink and entertainment in the lounge. My favourite area on Emerald Destiny however, was the heated swimming pool. It had a retractable roof so we could still soak up the sunshine whilst in the pool, and taking a dip was refreshing after an excursion. The swimming pool is an innovative feature and transforms into a cinema in the evenings.

My cabin was a Panoramic Balcony Suite and at the touch of a button, the floor-to-ceiling window lowered to a halfway point to create a balcony so we could enjoy a river breeze whilst we sat and watched the scenery pass by. Each cabin offered all the amenities we needed including exceptionally comfortable beds, luxury toiletries, a hairdryer and safe. There was also a TV with an Infotainment system. Complimentary Wi-Fi was available throughout the ship.

Our Danube Delights cruise was from Budapest to Nuremberg. Highlights of this fantastic cruise included Slovakia's capital, Bratislava, Melk - home to the opulent Baroque abbey, Vienna and Regensburg. Excursions were included during the trips and were available at a regular walking pace or a gentle pace. My favourite place was Regensburg, a Bavarian city known for its well-preserved medieval architecture.

Budapest Budapest Bratislava Bratislava Bratislava Home-hosted coffee and cake Home-hosted coffee and cake Cruising the Wachau Valley Durnstein Melk Abbey Melk Abbey Regensburg Regensburg Regensburg Oompah Band


Emerald Waterways include EmeraldPLUS activities to enhance the cruise. Whilst we moored in Budapest, we enjoyed a Hungarian Folklore Show onboard, and in Regensburg we were treated to a performance from a traditional Bavarian Oompah band. One of the highlights of this cruise for me, was the EmeraldPlus excursion to a local family in a village near Bratislava. We met the family and we were treated to coffee or wine, and delicious home-made cake. We learned all about their life as they grew up during the communist rule, before looking round their beautiful gardens where they take pride in growing their own fruit and vegetables.


During the cruise, guests can choose from supplementary DiscoverMORE excursions. These aren't included in the cruise cost, however are very reasonably priced and offer some extra special experiences. During an evening in Vienna, we could enjoy an exclusive classical concert at an exquisite Viennese Palace while the doors were closed to the public. Many guests took the chance to go to the concert and they weren't disappointed. Another of the DiscoverMore options during this Danube Delights cruise was Salzburg, famous for Mozart and the popular film, 'The Sound of Music'. During a morning in Salzburg, we enjoyed a guided walking tour before free time to have lunch and explore more of the city. We had enough time to visit the Mirabell Palace and Gardens, setting for the 'Do, Re, Mi' song which Maria and the Von Trapp children sang in 'The Sound of Music'.


For those who enjoy more energetic activities, Emerald Waterways include lots of EmeraldACTIVE excursions. These included a hike to Buda Hill, a bike tour in Vienna and a guided bike ride from Durnstein to Melk along the banks of the Danube. The group who joined the bike ride from Durnstein to Melk thought it was one of the most scenic rides they had done, and thoroughly enjoyed it.

New for 2019 - Onboard Activity Manager

In 2019, Emerald Waterways introduced Activity Managers on their ships to improve their fitness and entertainment programmes. Our Activity Manager, Brett, organised a range of activities during the week. When we had daytime cruising, we could join in with Aqua Aerobics, Line Dancing, Yoga and golf putting. Our Activity Manager also led some walks and bike rides. Whilst in Vienna I joined an active walk to Prater, the oldest amusement park in the world, which was very interesting to look around. During the evenings, we enjoyed a quizzes and games which really helped bring the guests together and was a great way to make many friends whilst enjoying a few drinks. For those who didn't want to join in the games, there were films shown in the innovative Riverview Club cinema.

Extending Your Danube Delights River Cruise

Sadly, as we arrived in Nuremberg, our fantastic cruise came to an end. On the Danube Delights itinerary, Emerald Waterways offer a 3-night cruise extension in Prague, which most guests joined. The hotel stay in Prague also included a guided walking tour and free time to explore the city.

View our Danube Delights river cruise

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