Amsterdam on the AmaMora

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We arrived back into Amsterdam on the morning of the seventh day of our Rhine River cruise, where passengers would spend a day in the city and a final night on the AmaMora before departing the following morning. The AmaMora was moored right next to City Marina, only a half-block from Dirona, and we debated staying aboard when we were so close to home. But our river-facing room gave us an opportunity for views to the IJ River that we can’t see from our berth, and we enjoyed being on the ship. So we stayed the final night and had a great time, particularly watching the river traffic and enjoying a fabulous dawn sky the next morning.

The river cruise was a bit of an experiment for us, as we haven’t taken any cruises longer than two nights before and weren’t sure if we’d like it. We generally prefer flexible schedules and aren’t keen on being overly ‘managed’, with assigned dinner seating and excursions in large tour groups. It also was a fairly last-minute decision, booked only a week before the ship departed. Most of the cruises were booked out months in advance, and we already have enough fixed schedule points that we didn’t want to add another. But in late December, when we found a room still available for a week-long Christmas Market cruise on the AmaMora from Switzerland back to Amsterdam, we decided to give it a try.

Overall, we really enjoyed the cruise. The AmaMora, launched just six months earlier, was spacious and comfortable; we had great views from our room; the service was excellent; and the food was delicious, with open seating at all meals. Multiple shore excursions were offered, ranging from bus tours to walking, cycling and even hiking trips. Or we could just set off on our own and return to the bus or ship at a designated time. We did a mix of both, in some cases spending the day entirely on our own, as in Basel, Switzerland and Cologne, Germany. Other days we took a guided walking tour and later explored on our own, such as Colmar and Strasbourg in France. We enjoyed all the excursions, but we were even busy than our normal pace. Compared to the big ocean cruise ships, the smaller ships, lower passenger count and more intimate scenery of the river cruise worked well for us. We’re not sure when or where our next cruise will be, but another river cruise has definite appeal.

Below are trip highlights from Dec. 29th and 30th in Amsterdam aboard the AmaMora. Click any image for a larger view, or click the position to view the location on a map. And a live map of our current route and most recent log entries always is available at

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Centraal Station
Amsterdam Centraal train station as the AmaMora arrives into town on an overnight run from Cologne, Germany.
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Passenger Terminal Amsterdam
The wave-shaped glass-encased Passenger Terminal Amsterdam to our south handles roughly 300,000 cruise ship passengers per year.
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Palais de Justice
The Palais de Justice in front of City Marina IJDok where Dirona is moored.
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The distinctive EYE Film Museum, left, and the A’DAM Tower, a converted former Royal Dutch Shell oil company office building.
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The AmaMora churning up mud coming onto the dock. We’re moored right next to City Marina—Dirona is only a half block from here.
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Power Cable
Lowering one of two shorepower baskets for the AmaMora. This is the first time the ship has been plugged into shorepower during the trip.
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Walking with other AmaMora passengers to take a canal cruise.
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City Marina
Passing City Marina on our way to the the canal cruise dock. Dirona is moored in the distance roughly at center.
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The Herengracht
Beautiful historic houses along the Herengracht, one of four canals that make up Amsterdam’s canal belt.
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Seven Bridges
The famous “seven bridges” view down the canal Reguliersgracht.
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The sinking city of Atlantis, one of the Amsterdam Light Festival displays.
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One of several illuminated laundry lines that make up the Neighbourhood Amsterdam Light Festival display.
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Big Bang
The Big Bang bomb display in the Amsterdam Light Festival.
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The NEMO Science Museum was designed by Italian architect Renzo Piano who also designed The Shard in London and the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York City. The science center building, originally built for the New Metropolis Museum, resembles the hull of a huge ship
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Our cruise included a final night in Amsterdam on board the AmaMora. Since our room faced the IJ River, we decided to stay on board to enjoy the view, since we can’t see it from our dock at City Marina.
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A fuel barge arrived early this morning to bunker the AmaMora.
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Spectacular dawn view to the IJ River from the last morning in our room on the AmaMora. We had a wonderful time on the cruise and are really glad to have had the opportunity to see the Rhine.
Show locations on map Click the travel log icon on the left to see these locations on a map, with the complete log of our cruise.

On the map page, clicking on a camera or text icon will display a picture and/or log entry for that location, and clicking on the smaller icons along the route will display latitude, longitude and other navigation data for that location. And a live map of our current route and most recent log entries always is available at


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