Just because you're on vacation doesn't mean your wellness must take a break too.
Because of our hectic yet increasingly sedentary lifestyle, more and more wellness is on the decline. Wellness doesn't just mean how much we weigh, what we eat, or how often we get sick. There are 7 dimensions of wellness – Emotional, Physical, Environmental, Intellectual, Occupational, Social and Spiritual – all of which are positively impacted when we do just one simple thing for ourselves: Move.
The first river cruise line to embrace the active travel trend, AmaWaterways River Cruises began focusing on this segment in 2006 and was the first carry an entire fleet of complimentary bicycles on board each European ship for independent and guided exploring so you can experience biking alongside enchanting riverside pathways and in city centers. Since then, AmaWaterways has received Cruise Critic Editors' Award for "Best River Cruise Line for Active Cruisers," furthering their position as a leader in offering higher-energy excursions for all categories of active travelers. The leader in river cruising innovation has now expanded its award-winning biking and hiking shore excursions and offers each excursion at a variation of paces to give guests options that suit their needs. Additionally, the company increased its relationship with Backroads – the leader in active travel – in 2017 and now offers more than 50 active departures in the world’s most renowned river cruise destinations.
In addition to their ships that already feature their Wellness Program, AmaWaterways will expand its program fleetwide in 2019 across Southeast Asia and Europe (except for Portugal). The Wellness Program is led by a dedicated professionally trained Wellness Host on each ship, who aims to inspire individuals to mindfully achieve their fitness goals, or set new ones. AmaWaterways' newest and largest ship, the AmaMagna, will also feature an Exclusive Concierge Golf Program on sailings along the Danube River among other innovative amenities.
Whether you want to keep up with your active routine, achieve a new fitness goal, or hoping to start something new, AmaWaterways accommodates every traveler who wishes to engage in programs designed to enhance their wellness while sailing and beyond.
“Being active and healthy while traveling is something that is personally, so important to me, and as a company, AmaWaterways has been embracing active travel for more than a decade. We believe guests are looking to take steps to ensure that their vacation time is an extension of their wellness-oriented lifestyle, and we are so happy to continue introducing new ways for travelers to remain healthy while on board our ships,” said Kristin Karst, executive vice president and co-owner of AmaWaterways. “It’s important for us to continue to be innovative in this space and give our guests exactly what they’re looking for during their time on board. Our wellness program has been a huge success, and is something we are very excited about continuing!”
Your Journey to Wellness
Each morning, you'll draw back your curtains to unveil a postcard perfect work of art – a grand castle perched high on a hilltop; a quaint chapel sneaking its spire beyond the village rooftops; rows upon verdant rows of terraced vineyards waiting to ripen. And from your private balcony, you'll do more than just admire the views. A gentle breeze will rustle your hair; a loon will sound its lonesome call; the aroma of sweet grapes will waft in from ashore. This is when you'll truly understand that travel is about so much more than the destinations you visit, it's about the journey.
Each day with AmaWaterways, you'll discover exciting cultures, be treated to authentic experiences, savor exquisite cuisine accompanied by perfectly paired wine and find thrilling adventures. It all starts the moment you board your luxury floating hotel, where a friendly crew member is ready and waiting to greet you with a flute of sparkling Champagne and a genuine smile.
Endorphins are a powerful natural remedy, lifting spirits and heightening the senses, so you can enjoy life – and your cruise – to its fullest. That's why you'll find a variety of activities carefully designed to stimulate and release these incredible hormones.
AmaWaterways' Wellness Program features four to six classes daily, including morning stretches, jogging, yoga, Pilates, cardio and core strengthening, resistance band workouts, and circuit training. Activities are complemented by discussion groups with a focus on healthy eating and relaxation techniques, empowering you to continue with your fitness routines or transform your lifestyle on board by embracing wellness in mind, body and spirit.
Each ship features a fitness room furnished with an array of exercise equipment such as treadmills, spin bikes and free weights (varies by ship), allowing you to work on everything from your cardiovascular fitness to strength training. Plus, the sun deck walking track provides the perfect place to not only stay fit, but to take in the beauty of the ever-changing scenery.
For those who prefer a more tranquil approach to wellness, AmaWaterways’ therapeutic massage services in their onboard massage room will melt tension away, soothe aching muscles, and nourish your mind, body and soul. A healing touch can even lower your blood pressure – and afterwards, you’ll feel brand new.
Healthy Food Options
Savor authentic regional delicacies and Western cuisine in the main restaurant or fine dining at the The Chef’s Table and Chaîne des Rôtisseurs specialty restaurants. All onboard meals are included, along with a wide selection of complimentary unlimited regional wine, beer and soft drinks at every lunch and dinner. Otherwise, house spirits, local beer, soft drinks and bottled water are available throughout the day.
"AmaWaterways spends considerably more on high-quality food ingredients and wine
In addition to a plethora of wellness activities offered on board and on shore, AmaWaterways incorporates healthy eating and locally-sourced ingredients into its award-winning cuisine. Guests wanting to pair their exercise with healthy eating will be able to do so as healthy food options will be available for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Offerings include fresh fish, cage-free eggs, crate-free pork, and vitamin shots. Low-sodium, gluten-free, and vegetarian options are also available.
Stop by the Hydration Station and start each morning with a glass of refreshing water infused with citrus, herbs and spices or even gemstones that help cleanse your body of harmful toxins. It’s also a great way to replenish and rehydrate after a workout or active day ashore!
“I believe so strongly in the importance of integrating regular exercise and healthy eating into our day-to-day lives, and it shouldn’t have to stop while having fun on vacation,” said Karst, who worked with Selina Wank, sports scientist and corporate wellness host, to develop the program’s offerings. “Wellness has now become more of a lifestyle, than just a single activity and we know the importance of sticking to a healthy regiment when on board,” adds Karst. “Cuisine is such a major part of river cruising and sacrificing a few calories doesn’t need to mean sacrificing taste. We will always look at ways to connect the pleasures of travel and cuisine and to accommodate our health-conscious guests.”
AmaWaterways' Special Interest Tours offer epicurean adventures accommodating even the most health conscious travelers. You can search for highly prized cholesterol-free truffles from Provence; taste delicate, antioxidant- and fiber-rich Wachau Valley apricots; and sip heart-healthy wines along the Rhine River, including aromatic, low-calorie Pinot Noirs.
Biking and Hiking Adventures
AmaWaterways is also mindful of your activities on shore. Their active hiking and biking excursions help ensure you’ll get in your 10,000 daily steps – or pedals – while you leave your tracks behind in timeless cities, experiencing them from an exhilarating new perspective.
The beauty of Europe doesn't just lie in its architecture and landmarks, there are also breathtaking things to be seen when you venture out into nature. That's why there are special hikes that will take you a bit off the beaten path in some very beautiful destinations. Nordic walking sticks available.
With AmaWaterways, you have the option of exploring Europe's amazing sights like the locals do. Whether you feel like joining one of the exclusive guided bike tours, or want to go discover on your own, there are many ways for you to explore on two wheels during your cruise.
AmaWaterways' guided biking and hiking tours are included in the cruise fare in addition to standard tours that are often offered at a variety of paces, including gentle, regular and active. In partnership with Backroads, on offer are even more adventurous bicycling excursions (extra cost).
Cycling and hiking allow you to forge a deeper connection to historic places and the land itself, touching the same soul as its philosophers, composers, artists, counts, kings and queens. From the complex network of canals crisscrossing the Netherlands and Belgium to the castle-laden Rhine River and its famous tributary, the Moselle River, with its steeply terraced vineyards, ride into your own fairytale adventure as you explore these delightful regions on two wheels or with an invigorating hike.
Johann Strauss's famous Blue Danube Waltz, recognizable across the globe, was inspired by the legendary Danube River, as have been countless compositions and stories throughout the centuries. Along the Danube's bike path – one of Europe's most beautiful and well-tread cycling trails – it's easy to see why. Feel the wind on your cheeks as you pedal amid green pastures, terraced vineyards, and captivating sites such as Belgrade's Ada Bridge and the Culture Mile in Linz. Hike up to the castles and abbeys that dominate cities, like Durnstein Fortress, where Richard the Lionheart was once held prisoner, and the sprawling grounds of opulent Melk Abbey, each offering miles upon miles of spectacular views.
The charms of medieval Rouen – where Joan of Arc was imprisoned and burned at the stake by the English – with its cobbled streets and fascinating cathedral, is nearly impossible to experience in full by foot, but wouldn't you love to see even more of this sprawling city along the Seine River from the seat of your bike? From the dramatic and historic Normandy Coast to the vast vineyards scattered throughout Provence and Bordeaux, France offers cyclists and hikers some of the most varied and breathtaking scenery. Bike or trek through Provence, imagining Van Gogh's sunflowers or Cézanne's immortal landscapes as you become entranced by culturally-rich towns such as Arles, Vienne and Avignon. Châteaux, historic vineyards, fields of flowers, medieval towns and melodious rivers are just waiting for you to discover on Amawaterways' biking and hiking tours.
Exclusive Concierge Golf Program
In 2019, guests onboard the flagship AmaMagna – AmaWaterways’ newest and most innovative ship to date – will have access to the Zen Wellness Studio, lending more space for group fitness classes, lectures and personal training sessions. Additionally, cruisers will be able to board a Sundowner boat accommodating just 14 guests for a complimentary intimate excursion departing from AmaMagna’s groundbreaking Water Sports Platform at the rear of the ship.
Imagine golfing at world-class courses in different countries all on one trip. Imagine not having to organize tee times, transportation, club cleaning and so on. Imagine having your favorite luxury hotel follow you wherever you go with everything you need for the perfect vacation. AmaWaterways has created a match made in heaven to enable you to do just that – luxury river cruising and golf.
AmaWaterways’ Exclusive Concierge Golf Program includes 7 nights on board the AmaMagna sailing along the iconic Danube River and taking you to some of Europe’s most prestigious golf courses.
With this seamless golfing experience, you are transferred from ship to course and back by private luxury Mercedes. Once on the course, you need only golf and enjoy—your tee time, practice balls and golf cart will have already been arranged in advance. After your round of golf, you'll enjoy a la carte lunch with beer and wine in the course clubhouse. When it’s time to transfer back to the AmaMagna, your clubs will be cleaned and ready for the next course on your golf adventure.
In addition to the wonderful selection of experiences and amenities available during your river cruise, both on board and ashore, you'll be provided with:
Experiential and Wellness Travel are where it's at. Experiential Wellness Travel is a hybrid of both. But Transformative Travel is the next evolution in travel. Like many land-based resorts, the global cruise industry has kept apace of this current trend with vacations that are fun, authentic, and meaningful by offering travelers on board and on shore fitness and wellness activities, healthy meal options, local cooking classes, culturally immersive shore excursions, participation in the local communities they visit, and a variety of tailor-made experiences that are transformative in a deep and personal way.