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It is always nice to fall in love.

AmaSonata – Clare Dudley Blog

It is always nice to fall in love. But when you fall in love with a boat it is important that I tell you all why.

As you know I am a lucky lady, having seen over 55 different cruise ships/river ships over my 30 year career in travel. River cruise vessels are appealing to me more and more and I enjoying selling holidays to our many customers that are looking for the next holiday concept after having spent many years on the ocean waves.
River cruising really does offer you so much; The opportunity to explore both cities and quaint towns on foot, to find rural villages and see pretty scenery along with exploring the history and heritage of destinations is probably the main highlight. But today you are spoilt for choice in how you wish to explore these lovely places. By river will allow you the chance to see more and only unpack your case once. To travel in style and enjoy a holiday which in my mind simply couldn’t be easier.

I have been on many different river cruise boats, and enjoyed them all. They do all offer a very different style and like with any travel there are many different standard. But I have to say i have now found a little gem that I simply must share with you all. AMA Waterways! Now I have recommended this product to many of your before, but this was based on a short guided tour of a boat when it was in the same port many years ago. But I had not cruised with them before. I loved it. Let me tell you more.

I was invited to a show case which was just an overnight with two full days to enjoy all that the new AmaSonata has to offer. She is a small intimate ships, taking 160 passengers. Many other river companies have the same size ships and they take 19, this therefore gives you the client bigger cabins, less noise as not so many on the ship at any one time and more staff to spoil you.
I was overwhelmed with the facilities on board. The viewing area on top deck was so well decked out with many defined areas. A lovely relaxing sofa area, a decent size heated swiming pool, a covered area providing shade, plenty of deck chairs to enjoy the sun, tables and chairs to enjoy afternoon tea, and even a super out door (large) chess set. And that is just on the sun deck.

Ama Sonatoa Chess

Other facilities on board include; not just one main lounge area, but an outdoor rest area/restaurant, restaurant, fitness room, spa area and Hair salon. All reached by a centre piece of a stunning glass elevator. This is good news for many whom have in the past wanted to travel on a river cruise holiday but have been unable to due to access on the boat.

Ama Sonata

Now about the cabins – I have a superbly appointed French Balcony and outside balcony cabin – all 210 square feet of the cabin had been designed and throughout carefully and considerately. Everything was top of the range, with the newest technology, stylish décor and attention to detail throughout. The shower was one of the nicest I have experienced. The marble bathroom was both spacious and bright, the amenities were generous and felt luxurious, simple touches like daily bottles of water included and a fridge to keep the water cool – alone with the comfort of the high thread count bed linen…. All made the cabin a delight. I took a good look around all the cabins and have to say I thought all were super. The cabins on the lower deck with just port holes have the same amenities but are just much smaller. For me I have to say I do recommend highly the twin balcony cabins. These are the most successful on the ship so I would encourage early booking if these might appeal to you.

Ama Sonato Cabin

Don’t forget that with an AMAwaterways the following is included in your price
• Shore excursions included
• Wine and soft drinks with your meals
• Bikes included

• Excellent food

I found the food on board along with the staff to be of a very high standard. The choice at meal times was extensive and the presentation superb. Ione question I am often asked on a river cruise enquiry is, “Are any of the meals buffet service?”, well breakfast and lunch does have a lovely buffet selection, but you can easily ask the waiter to bring you what you require as a menu is always available.

Ama Sonata 2

Here is a little bit about Amsterdam and just how easy the whole journey was.
Once we arrived in Amsterdam airport, we walked through the departure terminal to find the escalators to the rail station. We purchased a rail ticket via an easy to use ticket dispenser. A one way ticket from the airport to central station was €4.10 (approx. £3.25). The journey time was just 15 minutes. On arrival at Amsterdam central, you simply get a taxi to the port – which is no more than 5 minutes away, and is approx. €8euros. You could walk this as it is only about 5 minutes- walk, but if you don’t know where you are going a taxi is always a comfort. You can of course get a taxi from the airport but this would cost you around €40-€50 depending on the traffic and is about a 25 minute journey.

Once at the port it is so easy to walk into the centre of Amsterdam – it really is only a 5 minute walk. I can highly recommend the Movenpick Hotel in Amsterdam for any pre or post stays and indeed would highly recommend the Sea Palace restaurant (a Chinese restaurant on the river – simply fabulous food) which is just a stone’s throw from where the boats are docked.


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