Emerald Sky Review

Editor Rating:  4.5
Call our partner agents at 866-501-2339 to book your cruise.

Emerald Sky Ratings

  • Category
  • Dining
  • Public Rooms
  • Cabins
  • Entertainment
  • Spa & Fitness
  • Family & Children
  • Shore Excursions
  • Enrichment
  • Service
  • Value-for-Money
Editor Rating
Member Rating
Why Choose Emerald Sky?
  • Modern take on river cruising
  • Excellent onboard facilities, including a pool
  • Good choice for budget-conscious cruisers

Emerald Sky Overview

By Jeannine Williamson, Cruise Critic Contributor

Emerald Sky is the first of four ships launched by Emerald Waterways, a European river cruise line that made its debut as part of Australian-owned parent company Scenic Tours, which also boasts all-inclusive brand, Scenic Cruises.

It marks an exciting departure from existing vessels, with an exceptionally bright, modern look and a unique new-to-river feature: a swimming pool with a retractable roof that transforms into a cinema at night. The three airy passenger decks pack in plenty of other facilities, including a hair salon, gym, massage room and bikes that passengers can use to explore independently. Some initial issues with the new ship -- such as an extremely steep staircase onboard -- have been fixed in the months following its launch.

Between March and November, Sky sails on three Rhine-Main-Danube itineraries that range in duration from eight to 15 days.

This fresh-looking line has broken the traditional mold of river cruising and will appeal to people looking for moderately priced cruises, as well as younger cruisers and first-time passengers dipping a toe into this burgeoning sector of the cruise market.

Emerald Sky Fellow Passengers

More than 50 percent of passengers are from Australia, where the line has its roots and is part of the well-established Scenic Tours brand. Expect the rest of the passengers to hail from the U.K., U.S. and Canada. While Emerald Waterways says it's not deliberately targeting a younger demographic, the line could well find a niche with cruisers in their 40s and 50s, which is below the average river cruise age group.

Emerald Sky Dress Code

The ship has a relaxed, easygoing vibe. There is no special dress code, and there are none of the formal nights you get on ocean cruises. For dinner, smart casual attire is recommended. Jeans can be worn in the restaurant in the evening, but shorts and flip-flops are not appropriate. Many passengers up the sartorial ante for the captain's welcome dinner and/or farewell dinner, albeit this still errs on the side of smart casual, rather than full-on cocktail dresses and suits.

Emerald Sky Gratuity

All gratuities and tips on Emerald Waterways' river cruises and shore excursions are included. Passengers who wish to show gratitude for exceptional service are welcome to do so at the reception desk at the end of the cruise. The onboard currency is the euro.

Next:  Emerald Sky Cabins

By Jeannine Williamson, Cruise Critic Contributor

77 Emerald Sky Reviews from our Cruise Critic Community

Start your review of Emerald Sky
Click to rate
Member Since 2017
1 review
0 forum posts
0 helpful votes
Sailed four weeks ago
Wanted to go down the Danube and visit bits of Eastern Europe to which we had not previously been to see. We visited Budapest, Hungary (night cruise to see the lights was very good), and Kalosca, Hungary for a horse show. Osijek, ... Read more
Helpful? Thank BobTC
Roger Harris
Member Since 2017
1 review
0 forum posts
0 helpful votes
It offered a great opportunity to visit countries I had not visited before. South / Mid European Countries that had been ravaged by warfare and political intrigue over many centuries. The shore excursions were interesting and very well ... Read more
Nothing seems to work
Member Since 2015
2 reviews
0 forum posts
0 helpful votes
We had never been on a river cruise before so maybe our expectations were too high. The really good thing about it was that all the arrangements for getting on and off the boat, excursions etc went like clockwork and the local guides were ... Read more
Cruise Deals

Emerald Waterways Fleet

Share feedback
Thank you!  Cruise Critic values your feedback.
How can we improve this page?