Disney leaps into river cruising
Apr. 17, 2015
Disney’s tour company arm, Adventures by Disney, will launch a series of one-week river cruises on the Danube next year aboard a new, custom-built AmaWaterways ship, the 170-passenger AmaViola.
It’s a significant move for a family-oriented company into what has been an adult-oriented market — with the exception of a few specific family-friendly river itineraries such as those offered by Tauck and Uniworld.
New family-friendly elements on AmaViola include six sets of connecting cabins as well as some rooms and suites designed to accommodate three or four people. Public space — which is limited because river ships need to sail under bridges and through locks — is being “reimagined” to allow for grownup activities such as wine tasting; kids’ activities like nighttime movies, karaoke, relays, and video games; and special teen activities such as theme nights.
The five Disney charters (four in July and one Christmas cruise in December) will follow a Danube route between Vilshofen, Germany, and Budapest with port calls including Vienna.
Shore experiences will have a new family focus, too, like revisiting scenes from the movie The Sound of Music in Salzburg and taking a traditional Austrian folk-dancing lesson in Melk.
Adventures by Disney will position eight of its own guides on each sailing along with AmaWaterways’ crewmembers and local experts at each port.
Photo: Adventures by Disney
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