Five Things to Know About Avalon Waterways' Tranquility II Cruise Ship
Best for: Laid-back river cruisers who want a little extra room to move
Sails: The Rhine River
At a Glance: One of Avalon’s signature “Suite Ships,” Tranquility II debuted in 2015 along with its sister vessel Tapestry II. The ship has everything the line is known for: spacious suites, wall-size windows, and beds with a view.
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It’s All About the View
One thing that sets Avalon apart from other river lines is its suites, which are larger than the norm and ingeniously laid out. Most of the cabins are 200-square-foot Panoramic Suites, so named for their huge floor-to-ceiling sliding window, which takes up an entire wall. (Opening it turns the sitting area into a de facto balcony.) Even better, the bed faces the window, allowing passengers to wake up to the sight of vineyards or castles instead of a wall or a cabinet. The larger 300-square-feet Royal Suites also have a panoramic window and window-facing bed, while the 172 deluxe staterooms do not.
Lunch Can Happen on the Sundeck
Tranquility II has an open-air grill on the top deck of the ship, a rarity for river cruises. And while there’s no pool onboard, there is a whirlpool and plenty of loungers both in the sun and in the shade.
You’ll Eat Where You Are
In the main dining room, regional flavors rule. For dinner, choose from dishes like potato pancakes with smoked salmon, and braised German-style beef with potato dumplings and red cabbage. Those in the mood for classic cruise fare can opt for grilled salmon, chicken, or rump of steak. There’s also a complimentary beer, white, rosé, or red on the menu each night.
There’s An Emphasis on Healthy Food
Good news for anyone stressing about gaining weight on her next cruise: in 2017, Avalon is rolling out its new Avalon Fresh program fleetwide. The line partnered with Viennese chefs Karl and Leo Wrenkh to create healthy, regional dishes made with ingredients from small, local farms for its menus—and some are even gluten free.
Passengers Get As Active As They Want
Avalon recently introduced new active-themed cruises for passengers who want to bike, hike, and waltz their way through Europe. There are none scheduled yet for Tranquility II, but the ship does have a fleet of bicycles onboard, which passengers can take out for free in port, or use during an organized tour led by local bike companies.