APT-TravelMarvel-AmaWaterways Coronavirus update
APT River Cruises suspended its entire fleet's passenger shipping operations (all boats of the brands AMAwaterways and TravelMarvel) cancelling all voyages with pre-scheduled departures in the period March 14 through December 31, 2020 (previously through May 31, June 29, July 31, September 14, October 31). Operations were planned to resume on November 1, excepting the AmaStella boat (cruising in Germany-only since July 2020). However, in mid-October was cancelled the entire 2020 season, excepting only the Rein River deployed AmaStella.
All affected bookings received 115% refund (with rebooking) or 100% monetary refund. AMAwaterways offers (for a limited time) special provisions which allow guests with new or existing bookings to purchase "AmaWaterways Travel Waiver Plus" which provides cancellation for any reason, up to 24 hours prior to the start of the booked services (cruise, land extensions, hotels, flights, etc).
The affected APT Tours (River or Ocean cruises) bookings can be rebooked up to 14 days prior departure, with refunds in FCC (Future Cruise Credit). The FCC can be used in either 2020, 2021 or 2022, with a change fee of GBP 125 per person.
PROMO OFFER: In mid-May, 2020, AmaWaterways announced a promotional 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.
Review of AmaWaterways
Due to the Coronavirus pandemic, APT River Cruises suspended its entire fleet's passenger shipping operations (all boats of the brands AMAwaterways and TravelMarvel) cancelling all voyages with pre-scheduled departures in the period March 14 through December 31, 2020 (previously through May 31, June 29, July 31, September 14, October 31). Operations were planned to resume on November 1, excepting the AmaStella boat (cruising in Germany-only since July 2020). However, in mid-October was cancelled the entire 2020 season, excepting only the Rein River deployed AmaStella. All affected bookings received 115% refund as FCC (future cruise credit with rebooking) or 100% monetary refund.
In mid-May, 2020, AmaWaterways announced a promotional 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.
This CruiseMapper page reviews all APT River Cruises ships operated by the sisterbrands (APT's subsidiary companies) AMAwaterways (website) and TravelMarvel (website). 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) and AmaLucia (2021). In 2021, the company starts exclusive Nile River cruises in Egypt AmaDahlia.
CruiseMapper's APT river cruise ship pages show 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).
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 port cities in Holland, Belgium, Austria, Germany, France, Spain, Switzerland, Luxembourg, Hungary, Czech Republic, Serbia, Croatia, Romania, Bulgaria, Russia, China, Vietnam, and 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.
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-Czech Republic-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).
In May 2017 started the construction of Europe's largest river cruise ship - AmaMagna. Boat's launch was scheduled for 2019.
The new AmaMagna is truly unique by design river vessel, 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 has double-size (compared to traditional European river cruisers), but 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 cabins 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 cabins 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 whirlpool, 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.
Disney-AmaWaterways river cruise charters
In Europe, Walt Disney partnered with AmaWaterways to offer its customers river cruisetour deals on voyage-chartered boats. 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 (company's 5th liner) is currently under construction.
Itinerary of AmaWaterways
AmaWaterways itinerary program is focused mostly on the European waterways, offering cruises on the rivers Rhine, Rhone, Danube, Douro, Seine, Main, and Mosel. The line operates a fully-owned fleet of river cruise ships 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.
AmaWaterways lineup of 2020 Africa Safaris and Wildlife Cruises includes a number of returning favorites and a brand new 4-night post-cruise Rwanda extension. The all-suite, all-balcony 28-passenger RV Zambezi Queen takes her guests down Chobe River to pamper with up-close wildlife viewing. New to African itineraries is the land extension in Rwanda, that can be added to any of the itineraries. During the extensions, passengers will visit Kigali and Volcanoes National Park, home to rare golden monkeys and mountain gorillas. The itineraries include:
- Discover Africa (3 nights in Cape Town plus a 4-night wildlife cruise and 2 nights in Victoria Falls);
- Wildlife and the Falls (1 night in Johannesburg, a 4-night wildlife cruise, 2 nights in Victoria Falls, 2 nights in Johannesburg, 2 nights at a luxury safari lodge, Greater Kruger National Park);
- Stars of South Africa (3 nights in Cape Town, a 4-night wildlife cruise, 2 nights in Victoria Falls, 2 nights in Johannesburg and 3 nights at a luxury safari lodge, Greater Kruger National Park);
- Rivers and Rails of Africa (3 nights in Cape Town, a 4-night wildlife cruise, 2 nights in Victoria Falls, 3-night Rovos Rail train journey Victoria Falls-Pretoria);
- Golden Trails of East Africa (1 night in Johannesburg, a 4-night wildlife cruise and 2 nights in Victoria Falls, 2 nights in Johannesburg and 7 nights in luxury safari lodges).
AmaWaterways and Backroads, both leaders in the active river cruise segment, announced the lineup of Rhine, Seine, Danube and Douro departures in 2020, including 9 full-ship charters and select cruises onboard the line's innovative newbuild, AmaMagna. Marking their 4th year of partnership, the two companies are also revealing select “expanded capacity” cruises, which bring together over 60 fellow Backroads cycling enthusiasts aboard a single vessel, providing for more riding companions and bigger active community.
For season 2020 were planned a total of 73 departures with 6 full-ship charter departures and additional itineraries on AmaMagna. The full-ship charter (Full Ship Celebration River Cruise) offers in 2020 3x departures on Danube and 3x on Douro. During these voyages, between 100-150 fellow biking enthusiasts come together on one of the world's biggest active group tours. Every Backroads trip offers traditional Backroads adventures, including 4 or more expert Trip Leaders onboard and onshore, dedicated and support vans as well as innovative itineraries with a choice of walking and cycling routes for all abilities. Bike tours feature custom-designed titanium bikes (complimentary bicycles stored on the ship's Sun Deck) for various rider types: touring, electric-assist and performance, and include GPS routes.
AmaWaterways introduced in its 2020 Europe, Asia and Africa Brochure (August 2019) an itinerary specifically curated for AmaMagna. In July 2020, AmaWaterways adds to its fleet the 24th ship AmaSiena, and in May 2021 - the 25th ship AmaLucia. Both newbuilds cruise on the rivers Rhine, Moselle and Main.
In 2020, AmaWaterways offers 3 new itineraries:
- 7-night Magna on the Danube, designed for the revolutionary AmaMagna, that made her debut in 2019.
- 7-night Treasures of the Main and Rhine on AmaDante and AmaSiena from Nuremberg to Amsterdam.
- Vineyards of the Rhine and Moselle itinerary on board AmaDante and AmaSiena sailing from Amsterdam to Luxembourg.
To meet the increasing demand for its Specialty Wine Cruises, the company has announced over 65 hosted wine-themed voyages for 2020, including voyages on the new AmaMagna on the Danube, Treasures of Main and Rhine and Vineyards of Rhine and Moselle itineraries.
AmaWaterways enhanced its pre- and post-cruise land programs, offering immersive experiences escorted by its Cruise Managers and accommodations in top-rated hotels.
The line's new 2020 land extensions include:
- Nice France – Available on the Colors of Provence and Spain itinerary, a new 3-night land extension in Nice is offered as an alternative to a 3-night land extension in Barcelona.
- Bangkok Thailand – Available on the Charms of the Mekong and Riches of the Mekong itineraries
- Istanbul Turkey – Available on Grand Danube and Gems of Southeast Europe itineraries, a new 3-night land extension in Istanbul is offered as an alternative to a 4-night land extension in Brasov and Bucharest.
The 156-passenger AmaLucia (2021) has planned a maiden voyage on March 16, 2021 (Tulip Time) before starting its Moselle-Rhine-Main-Danube program. In 2021, due to the increasing demand for river cruises in France, AMA will be repositioning 3 ships - AmaKristina (to Rhone), AmaDante (with AmaLyra on Seine River) and AmaCello (on Saone and Rhone). AmaVerde and AmaBella will be deployed on the Danube and the Dutch and Belgian Waterways.
In 2021 are introduced 4x new 7-day itineraries - all complemented by pre- or post-cruise hotel packages.
- Impressions of the Seine and Paris (AmaDante) from Paris to Le Havre (and reverse)
- The essence of Burgundy and Provence (AmaCello) from Chalon-sur-Saone to Arles (and reverse)
- Rhine Castles and Swiss Alps (AmaMora, AmaSerena) from Amsterdam to Basel (and reverse)
- Best of Holland and Belgium (AmaSerena) roundtrip Amsterdam to Utrecht and Dordrecht
AMA further enhances pre- and post-cruise vacation experiences via a new land extension in France's Champagne region where travellers can visit vineyards and savor wine tastings of Moet et Chandon and Veuve Clicquot. The land tour program is offered as an add-on to Europe’s Rivers and Castles, Vineyards of the Rhine and Moselle, and Rhine and Moselle Splendors itineraries.
AmaWaterwas 2022 itinerary program was opened for booking 6 months ahead. All itineraries in Holland, France and Portugal, plus voyages on Moselle and Rhine were open for reservations in mid-May 2020. AMA river cruise 2021-2022 programs feature 5x new itineraries and new pre- and post-cruise land tours in destinations like Saint-Malo France and Lake Como Italy.
- Impressions of the Seine And Paris (AmaDante) from Paris to Le Havre (and reverse) with 3 nights in St Malo and Mont Saint Michel monastery.
- The Essence of Burgundy And Provence (AmaCello) from Chalon-sur-Saone to Arles (and reverse).
- Rhine Castles And Swiss Alps (AmaSerena and AmaMora) from Amsterdam to Basel (and reverse) with 3 nights at Lake Como resort (Lombardy Italy).
- Best of Holland And Belgium (AmaSerena) roundtrip from Amsterdam with 5 departures (May through October).
- 11-night Secrets of Egypt And The Nile (AmaDahlia) is inclusive of 4 nights in a Cairo City hotel and 7 nights Nile River cruising between Luxor to Aswan.
Note: In November 2016, AmaWaterways officially announced its plans to launch a new riverboat, purposefully built to cruise in India. Cruising operations started in 2019. The decision was based on demand from the company's repeat customers willing to travel in new regions, to new destinations, and on exotic itineraries.
In brackets is shown the boat's launch year.
- AmaBella (launched 2010) - Danube River - Belgium, Holland, Austria, Czech Republic, 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, Czech Republic, Croatia, Romania, Slovakia, Turkey
- AmaDahlia (2021) - 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, Czech Republic, 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, Czech Republic, 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, Czech Republic, 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, Czech Republic
- AmaSiena (2020) - Rhine River - France, Germany, Holland, Switzerland
- AmaSonata (2014) - Danube River - Austria, Holland, Germany, Belgium, Hungary, Slovakia, Czech Republic
- AmaStella (2016) - Danube (between Budapest and Prague or Munich)
- AmaVerde (2011) - Danube River - Austria, Germany, Hungary, Czech Republic, 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)
- RV Samatha and RV Princess Panhwar (2016) - Asia (Irrawaddy River cruises in Myanmar/Burma) leaving from homeports Rangoon and Mandalay
- Zambezi Queen (houseboat) (launched 2009) - under charter for Chobe River cruises in Botswana (departures from South Africa, Kenya, Tanzania, Zimbabwe)
- Century Legend and Century Paragon offer Yangtze River cruises in China. Both ships are privately-owned and operated by Viking under a charter. These riverboats are also chartered by other major European lines, like Avalon, Viking, and Uniworld.
The following YouTube video provides a review of the experience on AMA river cruises in Europe.
The next YouTube video reviews the AMAwaterways cruises in Asia - Vietnam (Mekong River) itineraries.
AmaWaterways cruise tracker
Our AmaWaterways river cruise ship tracker is a function integrated into all our ship review pages. At 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.
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