Crystal opens reservation books for river cruises

Crystal's luxury ships will sail the Danube and Rhine rivers plus several waterways in France.
Crystal's luxury ships will sail the Danube and Rhine rivers plus several waterways in France.

Crystal Cruises on Monday unveiled details of its five river cruise itineraries and opened bookings.

Inaugural voyages for the five vessels will be exclusively available for booking to members of Crystal Society, the line’s loyalty program, from Nov. 30 through Dec. 15, 2015.

The newly acquired Crystal Mozart, a former Peter Deilmann vessel, will sail its maiden voyage on the Danube River on July 13 after an extensive redesign. Crystal will reduce the number of suites and increase suite sizes, transforming a 203-passenger vessel into a 160-passenger one.

It will sail the 10-night “Danube’s Capital & Wachau Valley,” visiting Austria’s Wachau Valley as well as Dürnstein, Melk, Linz and Vienna in Austria; Passau, Germany; and Bratislava, Slovakia. It will also sail the 11-night “Countries of Eastern Danube” that will call in Vienna; Esztergorm, Kalocsa, Budapest, and Mohacs, Hungary; Vukovar, Croatia; Romania’s Iron Gates; Belgrade and Novi Sad, Serbia; and Bratislava, Slovakia. The Crystal Mozart will also sail several Christmas market and holiday cruises through Austria, Germany and Slovakia.

Additionally, Crystal has ordered the construction of four yacht-style river vessels at the Lloyd Werft shipyard in Germany — the 110-passenger Crystal Bach and Crystal Mahler, and the 84-passenger Crystal Ravel and Crystal Debussy.

The Crystal Debussy will make its maiden voyage on the Seine River on June 4, 2017, after which it will sail five-, seven- and 10-night voyages along the Seine. The ship’s smaller size will allow it to dock near the Eiffel Tower and guests can extend their stay in Paris, according to Crystal.

The Crystal Bach will have it first departure on the Rhine and Moselle rivers on June 18, 2017, and will sail a 14-night itinerary with stops in Amsterdam and Antwerp, Netherlands; Basel, Switzerland; and Rudesheim, Nijmegen, Cologne, Cochem, Koblenz, Mainz, Speyer, Kehl, and Breisach, Germany. It will also sail a 10-night Christmas markets trip in the region.

The Crystal Ravel will sail the Garonne and Dordogne rivers in France’s Bordeaux region beginning Aug. 8, 2017. There will be a seven-night Bordeaux, the Wine Region & Beyond itinerary that will begin with two nights in Bordeaux, before cruising to Cadillac, Pauillac, Blaye and Libourne, France, before heading back to Bordeaux.

The Crystal Mahler will make its maiden voyage on the Rhine, Main and Danube rivers on  Aug. 29, 2017, after which it will sail the 16-night “Grand Europe” itinerary, the longest offered by Crystal. It will include overnights in Budapest, Vienna, Passau and Amsterdam.


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