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Avalon Visionary: An aptly-named ship for a possible cruise?

Avalon Visionary: An aptly-named ship for a possible cruise?

Postby Dave » 01 Mar 2016 10:26

Adjective: visionary
1. thinking about or planning the future with imagination or wisdom.

Well, I don't know about 'wisdom', but we're thinking about doing a cruise on Avalon Visionary. It's my day off (from grandchildren-minding) and the weather's miserable, so I've nothing much better to do than to share what we're thinking about... ;)

(All photos and images that follow are courtesy of Avalon.)

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I've been browsing for ideas for a cruise for late Spring for some time. The closest I came to finding something desirable was a fjord cruise from Calais with Croisières de France, but sadly there were no suitable cabins left when I enquired. There was nothing that appealed in the way of ex-UK ocean cruises so I browsed river cruises. Actually, it was a recent topic about river cruising (Do you think River Cruising is too expensive?) which got me looking. I suppose that the reason I browse for ocean cruises first is because that's where bargains are usually found. But occasionally a river cruise bargain crops up - like this one...

The itinerary looks very appealing - Springtime in Holland and Belgium - Tulips and windmills!:



The ship, Avalon Visionary, is relatively new and looks really nice in Avalon's photos.
A completely new class of ship, Avalon Visionary was designed to revolutionise river cruising and deliver the ultimate in comfort, style and superb service.

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What makes the ship really special though is the accommodation.
Launched in 2012, this innovative 'Suite Ship' offers two full decks of Suites each with wall-to-wall panoramic windows that open to create unique Open-Air Balconies.

I love the idea of an inside seating area that feels like it's outside. I also really like the way the bed faces the windows. :thumbup:

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The cruise is very all-inclusive - excursions, drinks, wi-fi, and even chauffeured transfers between home and St Pancras (it's not a fly-cruise - it's a Eurostar-cruise!). It'll probably be a couple of weeks before we know if we can do this cruise. In the meantime I can dream... :D
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Booked cruise: Marella Explorer - Caribbean, Christmas 2018
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Avalon Visionary: An aptly-named ship for a possible cruise?

Postby grannyM » 01 Mar 2016 10:32

If we were ever to do a River cruise I would like accommodation like this. :)
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Avalon Visionary: An aptly-named ship for a possible cruise?

Postby adogap » 01 Mar 2016 10:42

Looks fabulous and food for thought although I had never considered a river cruise before. The whole London - Eurostar journey would be a little off putting for us but I will check and see if there is embarkation in Amsterdam.
Certainly something lovely to ponder on a wet day Dave.

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Re: Avalon Visionary: An aptly-named ship for a possible cruise?

Postby Hannah » 01 Mar 2016 10:57

Looks beautiful and Keurkanhof Gardens are spectacular in the spring. OH worked and lived in the Netherlands for 2 years and loved it there. Saga river cruises are quite good value and more affordable than ocean cruises at least for our pockets. We love river cruises and often consider them. Shame some seem expensive for us. Go for it if you can.

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Avalon Visionary: An aptly-named ship for a possible cruise?

Postby judgegeoff » 01 Mar 2016 11:39

It looks like an interesting itinerary and the ship (boat ?) is stunning. We have been considering a river cruise for some considerable time, we like the idea of stepping off the ship and being right in the centre of the town. Please go for it Dave and Fred and tell us all about it when you get back! :)
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Re: Avalon Visionary: An aptly-named ship for a possible cruise?

Postby khkate » 01 Mar 2016 12:20

Certainly looks like it could be an interesting trip. Could you not pick up the Eurostar at Ashford - I am sure a transfer to there could be arranged just as easily. I agree Keukenhof in spring is gorgeous and well worth seeing, even if you are not a gardener (which we aren't). Saga do river cruises and often offer Eurostar transfers as an option for getting to the ship rather than flying.
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Avalon Visionary: An aptly-named ship for a possible cruise?

Postby Dave » 01 Mar 2016 12:55

khkate wrote:Certainly looks like it could be an interesting trip. Could you not pick up the Eurostar at Ashford - I am sure a transfer to there could be arranged just as easily. I agree Keukenhof in spring is gorgeous and well worth seeing, even if you are not a gardener (which we aren't). Saga do river cruises and often offer Eurostar transfers as an option for getting to the ship rather than flying.
adogap wrote:Looks fabulous and food for thought although I had never considered a river cruise before. The whole London - Eurostar journey would be a little off putting for us but I will check and see if there is embarkation in Amsterdam.
Certainly something lovely to ponder on a wet day Dave.

Chris

Avalon provides either flights or train and the private car service is included for journeys up to 100 miles. Heathrow is an option but a train transfer is something we've not done before and it sounds quite exciting! I phoned Avalon to ask if we could join the Eurostar at Ashford (or even Ebbsfleet) but apparently it's not possible. Perhaps that particular train doesn't stop at those stations?

We've done three river cruises so far and have another booked for this summer. It's very different from ocean cruising in many ways and very similar in others. Some things aren't as good, but lots of things are much better (IMHO!). So if anyone is considering a river cruise, I'd say give it a try! ;)
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Avalon Visionary: An aptly-named ship for a possible cruise?

Postby Gillzajoker » 01 Mar 2016 15:44

Certainly love the look of that suite, and views, Dave. However, I suspect it will still cost a lot more than an ocean cruise. by comparison.
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Re: Avalon Visionary: An aptly-named ship for a possible cruise?

Postby Seamouse » 01 Mar 2016 15:55

Looks a great itinerary. We have been to a couple of places on it, but would love to revisit them The ship itself looks really good ,too. If you go on it, we'll be very interested to hear how it all goes. We haven't been on a river cruise, yet, but are looking forward to trying one, at some stage in the future.
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