Review of AmaWaterways
This CruiseMapper page reviews all APT River Cruises ships operated by the sisterbrands (APT's subsidiary companies) AMAwaterways (amawaterways.com) and TravelMarvel (travelmarvel.com.au). APT (Australian Pacific Touring) is either the shipowner or charterer of the riverboats.
The company APT Travel Group was founded in 1967, and its current owner is Geoff McGeary. APT's fleet operates river cruises mainly in Europe (including in Russia) and Asia (China, India, Vietnam, Cambodia). Cruises and tours are also offered in Africa, Australia New Zealand, USA Canada (including Alaska), South America, Antarctica. APT's business became global (expanded to North America, Europe and UK) in the period 1970-1975, when the company opened its own sales offices in Auckland NZ, Los Angeles USA, London UK and Vancouver BC (Canada and USA).
The brand Travelmarvel became part of APT in 1996. Travelmarvel was founded as a NSW-based company by Clyde Harding. APT's coach fleet was sold in 2001. Since then, APT Travel specializes in ultra-luxury cruises and tours by riverboats, private jets, trains and coaches. The brand AmaWaterways was introduced in 2005.
APT fleet's newest boats include the sisterships Travelmarvel Polaris (2020), Travelmarvel Capella (2021) and Travelmarvel Vega (2021). AmaWaterways' newest ships are AmaLea (2018), the 2019-built AmaMagna, AmaMora, AmaDouro, also AmaSiena (2020), AmaLucia (2021) and the two Nile River boats in Egypt - AmaDahlia (2021) and AmaLilia (2024).
CruiseMapper's APT river cruise ship pages contain boat information, itineraries (destinations, ports of departure and call ports) and indicative lowest prices per person (based on double-occupancy cabin rates). We have AMAwaterways and TravelMarvel ships schedules (fleet's sail calendars with port dates and times / arrival/departure) and also riverboat's cruise tracker that shows on a map the vessel's current position (location now).
Next photo shows Travelmarvel's new ship design.
AMAwaterways-APT River Cruises
AmaWaterways was founded in 2002 by three former river cruise executives - Kristin Karst, Jimmy Murphy and Rudi Schreiner. The company operates cruisetours on 3 continents (Europe, Asia, Africa) and providing 30+ itineraries. However, most AMA cruises are in Western Europe - on the rivers Moselle, Rhine, Main, Danube and Rhone (France).
The company is headquartered in Chatsworth (California USA) and is a CLIA member (Cruise Lines International Association). AMAwaterways as brand is represented on the UK and Australian markets by APT (Australian Pacific Touring) via the company APT-AmaWaterways Gmbh.
AmaWaterways cruises are 7-day to 27-day long voyages to popular tourism travel destinations and river port cities in Holland, Belgium, Austria, Germany, France, Spain, Switzerland, Luxembourg, Hungary, Czechia, Serbia, Croatia, Romania, Bulgaria, Russia, Asia (China, Vietnam, Thailand, Cambodia). Many European cruisetour itineraries feature wine-themed activities and land tours on Rhine (Berg Rottland Winery at Rudesheim), Danube (Loisium Winery at Krems) and Moselle (Bergweiler Winery in Bernkastel).
AmaWaterways African cruise and safari program was introduced in 2012. It is based on Chobe River cruises in Botswana, with travel options to Kenya, South Africa, Tanzania, and Zimbabwe. Unlike other itineraries, it focuses on exotic wildlife with game viewing, fishing excursions, visits to local villages. Many tours are operated with smaller boats and also by vehicle.
In July 2021 AmaWaterways signed a partnership deal with Metropolitan Touring (Galapagos and South America travel company) for a new program of Magdalena River cruises in Colombia. The unique itinerary program was scheduled to start in December 2023, with a newbuild riverboat owned by Metropolitan Touring and operated by AMA under a long-term charter.
- The deal was signed by Rudi Schreiner (AMA's President) and Paulina Burbano de Lara (Metropolitan Touring's CEO).
- Magdalena River (Colombia) program is based on 2x 7-night itineraries, inclusive of pre- and post-cruise tours. Each voyage is led by a team of professionals, including AMA Cruise Director, Wellness Manager, local tour guides (experts on the Columbia's culture, nature, wildlife, cuisine). Activities include river kayaking, hiking, wildlife viewing.
- The Magdalena River itineraries (as ports and land programs) are currently being developed and to be announced soon.
CruiseMapper allows you to compare all AmaWaterways ships and their river routes, homeports, call ports and destinations. You can also track current itineraries and itinerary changes by year. AMA's cruising experience features:
Huge variety of itineraries - ranging from 7 to 27 days in length, also featuring "wine-themed" cruise tours (Bergweiler Winery (Bernkastel, on Moselle River), Loisium Winery (Krems, on the Danube), Berg Rottland Winery (Rudesheim on Rhine). On your Ama itinerary, you'll enjoy visiting magnificent cities and historic places, castles and fortresses, and all the amazing scenery.
Operational destinations and countries include some of the world's most navigated inland waterways in Europe (Austria-Belgium-Bulgaria-Croatia-Czechia-France-Germany-Holland-Hungary-Luxembourg-Romania-Serbia-Spain-Switzerland) in Asia (Cambodia-Russia-Vietnam-China). In 2012 was introduced "African River Cruise and Safari" program on Chobe River (running through South Africa-Botswana-Kenya-Zimbabwe-Tanzania).
Convenience - Ama ships always dock in the heart of river towns and cities or by magnificent castles and other local landmarks.
AMA ships provide complimentary 5-star luxury hotel amenities, exquisite staterooms with French Balconies, Twin-Balcony rooms, a variety of indoor and outdoor dining venues, heated sundeck swimming pools, attentive and highly personalized service, high staff-to-guest ratios, contemporary designs of public spaces, elegant venues.
Gourmet cuisine and premium (open-seating) dining experiences include daily buffet breakfast, special selections of European wines (complimentary with lunch and dinner), cocktail reception and welcome dinner (on embarkation day).
New ships 2019-2020-2021-2024
In May 2017 started the construction of Europe's largest river cruise ship - AmaMagna. The boat was launched in 2019 but inaugurated in 2021.
AmaMagna is truly unique by design riverboat featuring multiple dining venues (Main Restaurant, Chef's Table, Al Fresco Restaurant, Jimmy's Wine Bar), huge wellness complex, aft-located marina (watersports platform).
- The boat is double-sized (compared to traditional European river cruisers), but with capacity to accommodate just 1/5 more passengers (98 staterooms for 196 pax), which means more personal space. Due to its dimensions (length 135 m, width 22 m), AmaMagna can navigate only on Danube River.
- Cabins are generously sized (between 355-710 ft2 / 33-66 m2), all are appointed with natural wood fixtures. All suites are with large step-out balconies, double-sink bathrooms, walk-in showers. Grand Suites are 2-room, with bathrooms fitted with bathtubs.
- Zen Wellness Studio has a large exercise area for group classes (stretching, cardio-core strengthening), juice bar, 2 massage rooms, Beauty Salon (manicure, pedicure, hairdresser). TOnboard fitness program is led by a professional trainer.
- Sun Deck features a large heated swimming pool, large Jacuzzi, Sky Bar.
The shipboard entertainment program is enhanced. The boat also introduced the company's new Concierge Golf Program, which allows passengers to play at 4 top-class golf courses in Germany, Austria, Hungary, and Slovakia.
In 2021 were inaugurated the boats AmaSiena, AmaLucia, AmaDahlia (Egypt). In 2019 debuted the boats AmaDouro (Portugal) and AmaMora, in 2018 - AmaLea. In 2021, AMA's sister-brand Travelmarvel inaugurated Travelmarvel Polaris, Travelmarvel Capella, and Travelmarvel Vega. For 2024 was scheduled the launch of AmaLilia (Egypt).
Disney-AmaWaterways river cruise charters
In Europe, Walt Disney partnered with AmaWaterways to offer its customers river cruisetour deals on voyage-chartered boats. A voyage charter is when the vessel (and its crew) are hired for a specific voyage (departure date and custom itinerary). The charterer (Disney) pays the shipowner (AmaWaterways) on a lump-sum basis (single payment) while the shipowner is responsible for paying port taxes, fuel costs and crew costs. The cruise charter specifies a laytime (period) for loading and unloading the Disney-provided (exclusive) passengers.
On the chartered from AmaWaterways riverboat, Disney provides its passengers with all-inclusive deals (accommodation, meals, entertainment, shore excursions) including an immersive and pro-active onboard and ashore program curated by Disney's family travel experts. A team of Disney Adventure Guides includes English-speaking professional storytellers who review the visited by the ship destinations (port cities, towns, land tour sites and attractions).
For season 2021, the mainly family-themed "Adventures by Disney" were part of Disney's ever-largest river cruise program - a total of 30 departures/itineraries on Danube and also in France (Seine, Rhine, Rhone). Traditionally, select voyages are exclusively reserved for families without kids, being themed on Food and Wine and Oktoberfest (with German beer tastings). New in 2021 is Disney's Rhine River cruise program that includes Papenburg where is offered an exclusive tour to the MEYER WERFT shipyard where MS Disney Wish (the company's 5th liner) is currently under construction.
(Coronavirus crisis) passenger shipping pause 2020-2021
Due to the Coronavirus pandemic, APT River Cruises suspended its entire fleet's passenger shipping operations (all boats of the brands AMAwaterways and TravelMarvel) canceling all voyages with pre-scheduled departures in the period March 14, 2020, through early-July 2021. Fleetwide operations restarted in August 2021.
Operations were planned to resume on November 1, 2020, excepting the AmaStella boat (July 2020), but in mid-October was canceled the entire 2020 season.
All affected bookings received 115% refund as FCC (future cruise credit with rebooking) or 100% monetary refund.
In May 2021, AMA announced that the company's operations start on July 3 (AmaDouro boat/Douro River Portugal), July 21 (AmaMagna/Danube River), July 22 in France (AmaKristina on Rhone River, and AmaLyra on Seine River), July 27 (AmaVida/Douro River) and July 29 (AmaDolce on Garonne River France, and AmaSiena on Rhine River).
In mid-May, 2020, AmaWaterways announced a promo campaign by offering complimentary river cruises to frontline personnel (first responders, medical, essential service employees). The offer is via free FCC (Future Cruise Certificate/Credit) that can be used on any European or Asian itinerary with departure through December 31, 2021. For making these FCC reservations are needed only valid ID and one paying passenger (in the same stateroom). Promo bookings also must be made within 90 days prior departure.
Itinerary of AmaWaterways
AmaWaterways itinerary program is focused mostly on the European waterways, offering cruises on the rivers Rhone, Saone, Seine, Douro, Danube, Main, Rhine and Mosel. The company operates a fully-owned fleet of riverboats but also uses boat charterers for operating remote destinations. South America, Africa, and Asia AMA river cruises (in Russia, Vietnam, and Cambodia) are operated mostly through leased vessels/time-chartered boats.
New itineraries 2023-2024
7-night "Celebration of Classical Music: The Danube" is also between Budapest and Vienna.
Two "Seven River Journeys" are also offered (see details below) offering cruising through 14 countries in spring-summer 2023.
AMA's itineraries are also along the rivers Moselle, Main and Rhine, in addition to the "Enticing Douro" and "Flavors of Portugal and Spain" voyages on Douro River.
5 AMA ships are scheduled for deployments in France, each with a different itinerary. With B2Bs travelers can combine multiple itineraries and save 10% on the 2nd or 3rd cruise. Another option is to add on a land package before/after the cruise to extend the vacation.
New 2023 pre/post-cruise land packages available to book include:
- 3-night Saint-Malo package - with the "Impressions of the Seine and Paris" itinerary
- 3-night Geneva Switzerland and 3-night French Riviera with the "Essence of Burgundy and Provence" itinerary
In January 2023, National Geographic announced its 2024 lineup of NatGeo Expeditions river cruises. Unlike cruise line Lindblad's partnership with National Geographic, these sailings are chartered on AmaWaterways' river ships. The trips feature experts with ties to National Geographic onboard who share their knowledge with passengers as they sail Europe’s waterways, including authors, geographers photographers, and more.
8-day Holland and Belgium in Springtime roundtrip from Amsterdam (April 15th) is an art, floral, and architecture-focused voyage that heads through the waterways of Belgium and the Netherlands. It includes stops at the windmills of Kinderdijk, a Floralia flower show at a Belgian castle, and the world’s biggest collection of works by Vincent Van Gogh. Experts joining include geographer Jan Nijman and photographer Gianluca Colla.
8-day Rhine River Cruise from Basel to Amsterdam (September 12th) includes walking excursions, bike rides and tasting tours as it explores the Netherlands, Germany, France, and Switzerland. Wine lovers can enjoy a taste of the Rheingau wine region in Germany, while photographers can learn from the NatGeo Photography Expert Susan Seubert during an on-deck photo workshop capturing images of the Rhine Gorge. Author Teresa Fisher is also joining the journey.
8-day Danube Christmas Markets from Budapest to Nuremberg (December 7th) to discover lesser-known holiday marketplaces in Vienna and Salzburg as well as visit Vienna’s Museum of Natural History and meet with National Geographic Explorer Ludovic Ferriere for a unique behind-the-scenes look at a meteorite exhibit he curated. Author Mark Baker will also be onboard for the sailing.
World's longest river cruisetour (2024) 49-day "Seven River Journey - Spring and Summer Editions"
In September 2022 was unveiled the company's longest river sailing scheduled on AmaMora for 2024.
The 49-night “Seven River Journey - Spring and Summer Editions” itinerary combo features navigation on 4 rivers (Moselle, Main, Rhine, Danube/with Main-Danube Canal passing), cruising the Danube Delta and the Black Sea, and visits 15 countries in Europe (including Moldova/Giurgiulesti). AMA's Seven River Journeys debuted in 2021.
The "Seven River Journey: Spring 2024 Edition" itinerary departs from Amsterdam on April 22, 2024, and ends in Giurgiu Romania on June 10th.
The "Seven River Journey: Summer 2024 Edition" itinerary departs from Giurgiu on June 10th and ends in Amsterdam on July 29th. Befor ending in The Netherlands, the voyage also features navigation on the Belgian and Dutch inland waterways Scheldt, Maas, and Waal.
Both itineraries (Seven River Journey 2024) are with prices inclusive of gratuities (onboard and ashore), land tours/ excursions, laundry services, special souvenirs.
World's second-longest river cruisetour (2023) 46-day "Seven River Journey Through Europe"
For 2023, AmaWaterways scheduled the industry's "longest-ever river cruise itinerary" - the 46-night "Seven River Journey Through Europe”. The unique voyage (departing on June 1, 2023) visits 14 countries and is actually a B2B/back-to-back that combines 4 different itineraries on 4 riverboats. These AMA ships are:
- AmaLyra (7-day Seine River roundtrip from Paris City) visits ports in France between June 1-8, 2023.
- AmaKristina (5-day Saone and Rhone itinerary from Lyon to Tarascon) visits ports in France between June 8-13, 2023.
- AmaPrima (21-day Rhine-Moselle-Main cruise from Basel via Amsterdam to Vilshofen) visits port cities in visiting Switzerland-Germany-France-Belgium-Luxembourg-Holland, between June 13-July 4, 2023.
- AmaVerde (13-day Danube cruise from Vilshofen to Giurgiu Romania) visits ports in Germany-Austria-Czechia-Slovakia-Hungary-Croatia-Serbia-Bulgaria-Romania, between July 4-17, 2023.
Bookings for "Seven River Journey Through Europe" opened on March 15, 2021. Prices started from EUR 21730 (USD 26000 / GBP 18630) per person with double occupancy, meaning rates from EUR 470 (USD 565 / GBP 405) per person/per night.
In mid-April 2021 the company announced a second (45-night) "Seven River Journey Through Europe" cruise after demand soared for the summer 2023 itinerary.
- Departing from Avignon France on April 20, 2023, the voyage ends in Giurgiu Romania (June 4) and includes 3 boats (AmaKristina, AmaCerto, AmaMagna) sailing on 7 rivers and through 14 countries.
- AmaKristina sails in France (on Rhone River, from Avignon to Lyon), follows transfer to Basel Switzerland, boarding AmaCerto (sailing on the rivers Scheldt-Maas-Rhine-Main-Danube), then boarding AmaMagna.
- Fares started at USD 25000 (EUR 20870 / GBP 18140) per passenger with double occupancy.
AMA riverboats deployments
Next are listed all AmaWaterways boats - in brackets are the vessel's launch year.
- AmaBella (2010) - Danube River - Belgium, Holland, Austria, Czechia, Hungary, Germany, Slovakia
- AmaCello (2008) - Rhine River - France, Germany, Switzerland, Holland
- AmaCerto (2012) - Danube and Rhine Rivers - France, Germany, Switzerland, Holland, Austria, Hungary, Slovakia, Bulgaria, Serbia, Czechia, Croatia, Romania, Slovakia, Turkey
- AmaDahlia (2021) and AmaLilia (2024) - Nile River cruises in Egypt (hotel stays and departures from Cairo, roundtrip cruising from Luxor)
- AmaDante (2008) - Danube River
- AmaDara (2015) - Mekong River cruises in Vietnam and Cambodia
- AmaDolce (2009) - the Rhine, Main, Mosel and Danube Rivers - Belgium, Holland, France, Germany, Switzerland, Czechia, Luxembourg, Austria, Hungary, Slovakia
- AmaKristina (2016) - Rhine (between Amsterdam and Zurich
- AmaLea (2018) - Danube (between Budapest and Prague or Munich), Rhine (Tulip Time Cruise from Amsterdam)
- AmaLotus (2011) - Mekong River cruises in Cambodia and Vietnam
- AmaLyra (2009) - Main, Mosel, Rhine and Danube Rivers - France, Luxembourg, Germany, Holland, Czechia, Austria, Hungary, Slovakia
- AmaMagna (2019) - Danube River - this is the largest European river cruise ship
- AmaMora (2019) - Rhine (between Amsterdam and Zurich)
- AmaPrima (2013) - Danube, Rhine and Main Rivers - France, Germany, Belgium, Holland, Austria, Hungary, Slovakia, Switzerland, Bulgaria, Croatia, Romania, Czechia, Serbia, Turkey
- AmaPura (2014) - Asia (Irrawaddy River cruises in Myanmar/Burma) leaving from Rangoon
- AmaReina (2014) - Rhine River - France, Germany, Switzerland, Holland
- AmaSerena (2015) - Rhine and Rhine, Main and Danube - France, Switzerland, Holland, Germany, Austria, Hungary, Slovakia, Czechia
- AmaSiena (2020) - Rhine River - France, Germany, Holland, Switzerland
- AmaSonata (2014) - Danube River - Austria, Holland, Germany, Belgium, Hungary, Slovakia, Czechia
- AmaStella (2016) - Danube (between Budapest and Prague or Munich)
- AmaVerde (2011) - Danube River - Austria, Germany, Hungary, Czechia, Slovakia
- AmaVida (2013) and AmaDouro (2019)- Douro River cruise in Portugal and Spain
- AmaViola (2016) - Danube River
- AmaVenita (2015) - Rhine, Main, Danube
- Travelmarvel Jewel (2006), Travelmarvel Sapphire (2006), Travelmarvel Diamond (2007)
- Travelmarvel Polaris (2020), Travelmarvel Capella (2021), Travelmarvel Vega (2021)
Zambezi Queen (houseboat) (2009) is under charter for Chobe River voyages in Botswana (departures from South Africa, Kenya, Tanzania, Zimbabwe).
Century Legend and Century Paragon operate Yangtze River cruises in China. Both ships are privately-owned and operated under charter, including by other major European lines, like Avalon, Viking, Uniworld.
The following YouTube video provides a review of the experience on AMA river cruises in Europe.
The next video reviews AMAwaterways Asian cruises (Vietnam/Mekong River itineraries).
AmaWaterways cruise tracker
Our AmaWaterways river cruise ship tracker is a function integrated into all our ship review pages. On page-bottom on each page, you'll find a map with the boat's current location (AIS position). All the real-time tracking data is provided by VesselFinder. It's all about convenience - you will find where is your AmaWaterways ship cruising today and right now - along with its current itinerary, in real-time!
Enjoy the "AMA luxury" cruising on your AmaWaterways vacations!
Note: You can see the CruiseMapper's list of all river cruise ships and riverboats in the "itinerary" section of our River Cruises hub. All river passenger shipping line companies and their fleets are listed there.
AmaWaterways related cruise news
- Cruise Industry
NatGeo-National Geographic announced its 2024 lineup of NatGeo Expeditions river cruises. Unlike Lindblad's partnership with NatGeo, these sailings...January 9, 2023
- Cruise Industry
River cruise line AmaWaterways celebrated the official christening of its newest riverboat - AmaLucia, with a festive ceremony in Rudesheim am Rhein...August 7, 2022
- Cruise Industry
AmaWaterways announced it will launch a 2nd river cruise ship to sail in Egypt. AmaLilia is scheduled to debut on the Nile River in 2024...June 24, 2022
- Cruise Industry
AmaWaterways welcomed the arrival of its 2022 European cruise season with strong bookings and easing of entry requirements signaling the rebound of...May 8, 2022
- Cruise Industry
AmaWaterways' newest boat specifically designed for Nile River cruises - AmaDahlia, set sail on her Maiden Voyage in Egypt on September 6th...September 12, 2021
- Cruise Industry
AmaWaterways’ newest river cruise ship, AmaSiena, joined the fleet earlier this week “with a joyful ceremony” in Lahnstein, Germany...September 4, 2021
- Cruise Industry
One of the world's largest river cruise companies, AmaWaterways plans to restart operations in Europe with select ships, beginning July 3 in Portugal...May 25, 2021
- Cruise Industry
One of the world's largest river cruise companies AmaWaterways announced its 2023 European schedule, a full 7 months ahead of when it normally...April 21, 2021
- Cruise Industry
AmaWaterways recently launched its 2nd Seven River Journey Through Europe voyage after demand soared for the line's summer itinerary. The 45-night...April 14, 2021
- Cruise Industry
AmaWaterways announced its longest-ever river cruise itinerary the new “Seven River Journey Through Europe”. The 46-night B2B voyage has...March 11, 2021
- show more news