Emerald Star Sets Sail Along the Danube
I awoke just before seven this morning aboard Emerald Waterways’ Emerald Star,fully recovered from the lingering jetlag of last night. The verdict on the bed in my Panorama Balcony Suite: between the comfortable mattress, the soft pillows and the inviting European duvets, it’s one of the most comfortable I’ve slept in on a river cruise ship.
Emerald Waterways offers two different types of breakfast service: a light breakfast in the Horizon Lounge, and a full breakfast in the Reflections Restaurant on Deck 2. I chose to have the full breakfast, and I wasn’t disappointed in the offerings, which include a variety of fruits, vegetables and hot dishes. To drink, you can enjoy juices, teas and coffee – all within view of the Danube outside the massive windows that line both port and starboard sides of the room.
Today, Emerald Waterways was offering a bus tour of Budapest, interspersed with some opportunities to walk and enjoy some free time. I’ll be honest: I don’t like bus tours. When I am in a place, I want to get out and explore on-foot. But, that’s part of the reason river cruising is so fantastic; even our Cruise Director Daniela said that guests were under no obligation to participate in the tours.
Instead, I took the opportunity to finish yesterday’s blog this morning in the Horizon Lounge. I was even able to enjoy a freshly-made Cafe Late and read the daily news – delivered each morning to the Lounge – while I waited for the photographs to upload. It was so relaxing and enjoyable, I may make a habit of it!
Afterwards, I set out on my very own walking tour of Budapest.
First, I made my way from our berth at Batthyany 1 on the Buda side of Budapest to the emerald-green Liberty Bridge, or Szabadság híd in Hungarian. Built between 1894 and 1896, it was opened by Emperor Franz Joseph of Austria, who placed