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A Cruise with Avalon Visionary

A Cruise with Avalon Visionary

Postby cruiseselect » 21 May 2013 15:22

A couple of weeks ago, my colleague Hayley had the opportunity to sail with Avalon on their ship Visionary. She spent 3 nights on board and has kindly written a short blog detailing her experience.
Please read Hayley's account below.

On Wednesday 24th April 2013 I embarked on a journey with Avalon Waterways. The Tulips of Northern Holland cruise started in Amsterdam. I arrived at the airport at 10am and was met by an Avalon Waterway representative who transferred me to Hotel Moevenpick in Amsterdam City Centre where I met some other agents and passengers. All of the passengers were not due to be transferred to the ship until 3.30pm so when I arrived I did have quite a wait ahead of me.
Our Cruise Director, Nynke, advised there were some optional excursions we could do to kill the time. I decided to take the Zaanse Schans excursion which took us to a lovely little village on the banks of the river Zaan. The village consisted of green wooden houses, gardens, windmills, small hump-backed bridges, workshops and gift shops. After the excursion, we were transferred directly to the Avalon Visionary. Once onboard, we were greeted by the staff, checked in and walk to our cabins.
Once everyone had settled onboard the ship set sail for Volendam. We had a welcome meeting with our Cruise Manager, Nynke and then onto a 3 course meal which of course was impeccable.

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The following morning we woke up in the picturesque fishing village of Volendam and here we went on an included excursion through Volendam and onto Edam. After the excursion we set sail for Enkhuizen. Whilst sailing to Enkhuizen we could take advantage of the buffet lunch and relax with a book in the Club Lounge. Once in Enkhuizen we were taken to an open air museum called the Zuiderdee Museum. We had a choice this afternoon of the open air museum or a Dutch experience were you would go into a local’s home and have tea with them. The evening consisted of a Gala Dinner and live music with Stefan, who was delightful!
We docked overnight in Enkhuizen and the next morning we had a choice of excursions again. We could choose from the Tulip Fields of Northern Holland or Alkmaar Visit with Cheese Market. Unfortunately the Tulip Fields of Northern Holland was fully booked and I was unable to do the excursion so I went to the cheese market instead. I have never seen so much cheese everywhere! Late morning we set sail for Lemmer in Friesland. Once we arrived in Lemmer we went on a Friesland Excursion with Planetarium & Windmill Visit, the ship continued to sail to Sneek and we caught up with the ship in Sneek. In the evening we had dinner and onboard entertainment of Traditional Frisian Folk Dancers.

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The Visionary stayed overnight in Sneek and the next morning we set sail for Lelystad. We were able to have a relaxing morning taking in the gorgeous views. We disembarked the ship in Lelystad and took the Batavia Shipyard Visit excursion before heading back to the airport for our flights home.
As you would expect with a river cruise ship, the Visionary is not a massive ship so I was very surprised how big the cabins were. The cabins onboard were modern and very spacious. The cabin had a full wall mirror on one side and the bed was facing the French balcony so you could lay and watch the beautiful countryside pass you by. The bathroom was also very spacious with lots of storage compartments and a very decent sized shower. All the toiletries inside were l’occitane which was the perfect finishing touch.

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Other areas of the ship included the bar located in the Panorama Lounge. This area was where the live music and entertainment would be in the evenings, the light lunch was served and one night a tapas night was held in here instead of the normal dining option. There was also the dining room, a fitness area, a whirlpool, a sky lounge, lots of areas to relax and enjoy your holiday.

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All in all I was very impressed with Avalon ship and staff members. The itinerary was very well organised and the Cruise Manager was so passionate about her job, the passengers onboard adored her. No wonder Avalon are one of the market leaders in River Cruising!

For more information about sailing with Avalon feel free to contact Hayley on 0800 028 0529 or visit our website http://www.cruiseselect.co.uk/cruiselines/Avalon-Waterways

Happy Sailing :D
Moira
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A Cruise with Avalon Visionary

Postby Dave » 21 May 2013 15:44

I've copied this rather excellent review to this, the Avalon area. Many thanks; it's great to be able to claim our first Avalon review - and to spread the word about river cruising! :thumbup:
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Booked cruise: Marella Explorer - Caribbean, Christmas 2018
Booked walking holidays: Easter: Cotswolds; Summer: Kintyre & Islay
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A Cruise with Avalon Visionary

Postby Myklebust » 31 May 2013 21:39

A great review, a lot of detail in a short space. The boat looks fantastic. I have a friend in the U k that is thinking of possibly doing something like this, so details are on the way to him .
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Re: A Cruise with Avalon Visionary

Postby avidcruiser » 31 May 2013 22:47

I enjoyed your review, especially as we may have to look to European river cruising if we wish to cruise again. Seems the safer option for us right now.
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