Taste of Bordeaux cruise: Bordeaux

ABOARD AMADOLCE-Last day blues. Though I’m going off to Paris tomorrow morning, I’m always a bit sad to leave my home-away-from home after cruises like this, when the weather (and the scenery) has been simply gorgeous on both the Garonne and Dordogne Rivers. I’ve seen so many stately chateaux and verdant vineyards, enjoyed tasting distinguished wines and savoring the exceptional food that came out of the ship’s kitchen. A bonus for me has been the pleasure of …

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Taste of Bordeaux cruise: Libourne and St. Emilion

ABOARD AMADOLCE-Two perfect days of tasting wine and delicious food. On Tuesday, we had our usual wine lecture and tasting from our resident expert, Christopher Silva of the St. Francis winery in Sonoma. This time it was Cabernet Sauvignon, about which I knew next to nothing. And now I know a few things that might help me in my local wine shop. My afternoon tour took me to picture-perfect Saint-Emilion where I snapped lots of pictures of …

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Taste of Bordeaux cruise: Blaye and Bourg-en-Gironde, France

ABOARD AMADOLCE-The AmaDolce visited two places: first, Blaye, a quaint little town with a 17th century citadel listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site. In the afternoon, the ship would dock in Bourg-en-Gironde, built during Roman times and still living inside medieval walls. So in the morning, I strolled the streets of Blaye and found the place pretty quiet. It was a Monday, in August, and many places, except for the fabulous and very fragrant bakeries., were …

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Taste of Bordeaux cruise: Pauillac/Medoc; Garonne River/Gironde

  ABOARD AMADOLCE-Morning brought the AmaDolce to the Gironde estuary and the town of Pauillac, the starting point for my tour of the world-famous region of Medoc. The most exciting part of the day for me would be the opportunity to actually see the places that belonged to the names I had only seen previously on fabulous (and usually expensive) bottles of wine: Latour, Lafite Rothschild, Mouton Rothschild, Margaux, Saint-Estephe, Saint-Julien, etc. I snapped photos of some …

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Taste of Bordeaux cruise: Cadillac, France & Bordeaux, France

ABOARD AMADOLCE-This is the first full day on my “Taste of Bordeaux” cruise aboard AmaWaterways’ AmaDolce, taking me on the Garonne and Dordogne rivers to some of the greatest wine regions of France—and the world. There would be wine lectures and seminars led by Christopher Silva, CEO of the St. Francis Winery in Sonoma, California. And lots of tastings, of course. Though the AmaDolce is not a new ship, this is a brand new itinerary, in response, …

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What are the differences between ocean cruising and river cruising?

Okay, what are the differences between ocean cruising and river cruising? The differences are tremendous, but one doesn’t necessarily rule out the other. Consider the entire “cruise” concept includes unpacking once. That’s a great comfort whether on a three-day cruise to the Bahamas, a 100+ day world cruise or a week or two on Europe’s rivers, in the Mekong Delta or soon to come, AMA’s offering on the Zambezi in Africa. Having said that the joy of unpacking …

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Our cruise is coming to and end, but let me list the many wonderful things about AMA Waterways

We are enroute from Passau, Germany to Vilshofen, also in Germany. The cruise on the Danube is coming to an end. Tomorrow morning a coach will pick us up and take us to Prague, with a stop mid-day at Regensburg, Germany. We will get into Prague around the dinner hour, spend Tuesday and Wednesday in the Czech capital and return home Thursday. It has been a good week, a memorable week. We have made new friends and …

Read moreOur cruise is coming to and end, but let me list the many wonderful things about AMA Waterways

Our Saturday in Linz features a Christmas market

If this is Saturday AMADolce is in Linz, Austria. This third largest Austrian city obviously sits on the Danube. The route into town is lined with international corporations, huge plants and office buildings. In town, a concert hall named for composer Anton Bruckner and a Contemporary Art Museum are just minutes from the dock. This is our last Austrian port and the options included a half-day tour to Salzburg which was optional or a half-day tour to …

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Austria: Prettiest part of the Danube thus far

On the day after Thanksgiving, as our countrymen were standing on line waiting to buy electronics or sweaters, many of my fellow passengers and I climbed back aboard AMADolce after a brief walking tour of the little (350 people qualifies as “little,” doesn’t it?) town of Durnstein, Austria. It was cold and windy, tiny drops of moisture – not even qualifying as a drizzle – dropped onto our heavy coats. Our faces reddened by the early morning …

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A concert in Vienna: A perfect way to enjoy the city

Last night’s concert at Auersperg Palace was the ultimate Viennese experience. Sure the State Opera is a bit more impressive, but if you don’t love opera, these Viennese favorites are just your cup of coffee – and maybe a piece of chocolate cake as well. Mozart and Strauss were performed the Vienna Residence Orchestra at Auersperg Palace in downtown Vienna. The concert was one of AMADolce’s “optional” tours. Tailored for music-lovers, two busloads of passengers spent the …

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