Spirit of the Danube

Spirit of the Danube current position

Spirit of the Danube current location is at Europe Inland (coordinates 44.78801 N / 21.39104 E) cruising en route to WIEN. The AIS position was reported 4 minutes ago.

Current Position

Specifications of Spirit of the Danube

Year of build2022  /  Age: 2
Flag state Switzerland
BuilderVahali Shipyards Zasavica (Sremska Mitrovica, Serbia)
ClassRiver Cruiser
Speed12 kn / 22 km/h / 14 mph
Length (LOA)135 m / 443 ft
Beam (width)12 m / 39 ft
Gross Tonnage3600 gt
Decks with cabins3
Sister-shipsSpirit of the Rhine, Spirit of the Moselle, Spirit of the Main, Spirit of the Elbe
Christened byJenni Murray
OwnerRijfers Nautical Management BV
OperatorSaga River Cruises UK

Spirit of the Danube Review

Review of Spirit of the Danube

The 2022-built MS Spirit of the Danube cruise ship is Saga UK's second newbuild riverboat constructed in Serbia (at Vahali Shipyards) and inaugurated in March 2022. SAGA Group's boats are operated under a long-term charter being owned by different companies (shipowners and cruise lines) and target predominantly the British source market.

The sisterships are named Spirit of the Rhine (2021-launched), Spirit of the Danube (2022), Spirit of the Moselle (2025), Spirit of the Main (tba) and Spirit of the Elbe (tba).

Saga River Cruises ships are in the industry's luxury category and navigate on Europe's main and largest rivers (Danube, Main, Rhine, Moselle, Elbe) as well as on the Belgium-Dutch inland waterways. Saga Cruises' ocean-going newbuilds are the sisterships Spirit of Discovery (2019) and Spirit of Adventure (2020).

Saga Spirit of the Danube river cruise ship

Like all currently operated by Saga riverboats, Spirit of the Danube is operated by the UK-based cruise company under an exclusive time charter deal. The shipowner is the Dutch shipping company Rijfers Nautical Management BV.

Saga plc is a British travel company and cruise brand targeting mainly UK travelers in the 50+ age group. Saga UK annually serves around 2,7 million customers. The company is LSE-listed (on London Stock Exchange) under the stock symbol (ticker) SAGA.

The ship operator Saga Holidays provides travel package holidays, cruises and tours worldwide. Saga plc also owns Titan Travel UK (specializing in escorted tours, short-break coach tours, ship cruises) and Destinology (custom-designed luxury all-inclusive holidays and ship cruises).

The vessel (ENI number 2339346) is currently Switzerland-flagged (MMSI 269057798) and registered in Basel.

Decks and Cabins

Saga Spirit of the Danube staterooms (96 total) provide this boutique-type riverboat with max passenger capacity 182. All cabins are with double occupancy and similarly sized (17 m2 / 185 ft2). All Lower Deck cabins (deck 1) are with non-opening Porthole windows (located near the ceiling) and are smaller (14 m2/150 ft2). All cabins on decks 2 (Main) and Upper (3) are with French Balconies accessed via slide-opening floor-ceiling windows.

A total of 12 cabins are "Single" and can be booked without a single supplement (subject to availability). These rooms are in the category "Single Deluxe" with French Balcony (IS-Middle Deck, GS-Upper Deck) and "Single Standard" (KS-Lower Deck).

On Spirit of the Danube, Saga provides as standard cabin amenities (complimentary to all staterooms regardless of cabin category) a hotel type Queen bed (convertible to two twin beds) sized 200 x 160 cm, with luxury bedding sets and pillows, ample wardrobe storage space, bedside tables, wall-mounted reading lamps, LED ceiling lights, individual air-conditioning (thermostat controlled), 220V / 110V voltage outlets. The seating area is furnished with two armchairs, a coffee/dining table, a mirrored vanity table (writing desk) with a chair, wall-mounted magnifying mirror.

All staterooms have private/en-suite bathroom (with glass-door shower stall, single-sink vanity, WC, hairdryer, premium bath amenities, plush robes), electronic safe box (in the closet), direct-dial phone (for shipboard use only), mini-bar (fridge), complimentary bottled water (supplied daily), smart HDTV (satellite reception, Infotainment system / Internet, movies-on-demand, real-time bridge cam views), free of charge WiFi Internet (shipwide coverage).

The boat has 4 passenger decks, of which 3 are with cabins.

Shipboard facilities

Saga's Spirit of the Danube has a wellness area (small Gym room on deck 1), Panorama Restaurant (on deck 2, with adjacent galley/kitchen), Panoramic Bar Lounge (Belvedere Lounge on deck 3, serves as music salon/cinema/lecture hall and has a grand piano, dance floor, terrace with outdoor seating, library/reading corner), Foyer (lobby area on deck 3 with Reception Desk, Tour Desk and ship entrances / portside and starboard), Cafe (A La Carte Restaurant Delta/aft on deck 3).

The Sundeck (deck 4) houses an outdoor Terrace Lounge (also hosting alfresco dining with deck barbecues, bar service), Wheelhouse (retractable Navigation Bridge), shaded seating area (4 retractable awnings, deckchairs, tables), large sunbathing area (with loungers and low tables), deckgames area (with Giant Chess Board) and an aft-located Jacuzzi (outdoor whirlpool hot tub).

Due to its small seating capacity (34 seats), the A La Carte Restaurant is complimentary but reservations-only and dinner-only. The Dining Room Restaurant is complimentary, waiter-served and features an open kitchen (show cooking).

new Saga river cruise ship (Restaurant)

All the ship's main venues (Bar Lounge, Restaurant, Cafe, Atrium) are with floor-ceiling and wall-to-wall windows. One glass elevator (midship-located passenger lift) connects all cabin decks. All decks are interconnected via stairs (forward, midship and aft), including a grand staircase in the Atrium (midship). Sundeck is accessed via a staircase (14 steps).

Saga river cruise deals

Complimentary alcohol (beer and wine by the glass) and soft beverages are provided during all shipboard lunches and dinners. Complimentary (throughout the day) are unlimited teas, coffees and snacks. Price-inclusive are at least 3 land tours (on 7-night itineraries) and up to 8 shore excursions (on longer itineraries).

On MS Spirit of the Danube, Saga Cruises also includes (as standard) in the fares gratuities (onboard tipping), beverages (beer, wine, soft drinks), VIP coach transfers (from the passengers' homes/hotels) and the door-to-door "Saga VIP" travel service. Saga also offers Standard-Class train travel as well as complimentary airport parking (for passengers travelling with their own vehicles).

Saga VIP is a premium travel (private chauffeur) service that includes a return MPV (Multi-Purpose Vehicle/minivan) service from your home to the airport, return service to your local airport (for a domestic flight to the international airport), return service to the UK departure point (Eurostar train station or ferry terminal), Standard-Class train travel (from your local rail station to the UK departure point). Vacationers travelling with their own vehicles are provided with free airport parking.

Saga river cruise deals are inclusive of Economy-Class flights (domestic-only/subject to availability). Saga VIP services are available to all citizens of mainland-UK (England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland) plus Isle of Wight and the Channel Islands. Saga usually selects the form of transportation and/or the UK airport. The number of allowed passengers per MPV is 3-5.


Spirit of the Danube's itinerary program started with the Maiden Voyage on March 21, 2022. The 7-day itinerary ("Dutch & Belgian Waterways", from Arnhem to Amsterdam) visits Kinderdijk, Willemstad, Ghent, Antwerpen/overnight, Dordrecht, Amsterdam/overnight.

The inaugural season (2022) is generally based on Danube River voyages and traveling through 10 countries. On each voyage are included up to 5 complimentary shore excursions. The shipboard entertainment program features as special guests Miranda Krestovnikoff (1973-born British radio and TV presenter), Eric Knowles (1953-born British antique expert and TV personality) and Mark Sargeant (1973-born English chef and restaurateur) who will attend Q&A sessions and other events.

For 2022 (May-August), Saga UK scheduled for Spirit of the Danube a unique voyage priced from GBP 2650 per person with double occupancy. The 9-night/10-day "OBERAMMERGAU and a 4-COUNTRY CRUISE" itinerary (from Budapest Hungary to Oberammergau Germany/overnight) includes 7-night cruising, 2-night hotel stay, 24 meals (9 breakfasts, 6 lunches, 9 dinners), VIP door-to-door travel service (from the UK), travel insurance, and witnessing the exclusive (held once in 10 years) Oberammergau Passion Play.

Spirit of the Danube - user reviews and comments

Spirit of the Danube ship related cruise news

Spirit of the Danube Wiki

Vessel's construction (hull and superstructure) started on February 10, 2021, with the keel-laying ceremony held at Vahali Shipyard in Zasavica (Sremska Mitrovica, Serbia).

The 1923-founded Dutch shipbuilding company (Scheepswerf En Machinefabriek Vahali BV) owns and operates yards in Serbia (Belgrade, and Zasavica) and in Holland (Gendt). Vahali Shipyard Zasavica was officially opened in 2013.

Following the construction in Serbia, the ship was towed to Holland for final outfitting at Scheepswerf Vahali (Gendt).


The boats Spirit of the Danube and Spirit of the Rhine were officially named in a joint-christening ceremony on March 19, 2022, held dockside in Arnhem (Netherlands). The special ceremony was attended by 100+ VIP guests (involved in their design and building) as well as by Peter Wright (Saga Cruises' Commercial Director), Otto Groen (Rijfers Nautical Management's CEO), Vincent Bekker (Vahali Shipyard's owner), Captain George Dudunica (Spirit of the Danube's Master/Romanian), Captain Marinus Pols (Spirit of the Rhine's Master/Dutch).

The godmother of both riverboats is Dame Jennifer Susan Murray/Jenni Murray (1950-born English journalist, broadcaster, author). She was appointed OBE (Officer of the Order of the British Empire) in 1999, and DBE (Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire) in 2011. Both are British orders of chivalry rewarding contributions to arts, sciences, charitable and welfare works, and public service outside the military. Jenni Murray is best known as the presenter/host of BBC Radio 4's 60-minute program "Woman's Hour" (health-education-culture-politics-themed topics aimed at women) in the period 1987-2020.

Note: You can see CruiseMapper's list of all river cruise ships and riverboats in the "itinerary" section of our River Cruises hub. All companies and their fleets are listed there.