Natalie O'Mahoney

How long have you been working for Fred.\ River Cruises?

After my first holiday abroad as a child, I knew there was only one thing I wanted to do when I grew up, and that was to see the world. I started my career in travel 18 years ago. I have had many roles within the industry including a high street travel agent, a cruise specialist and - more recently - a river cruise specialist.

I have worked for Fred. Olsen Travel for the past four and a half years and have been lucky enough to represent some of the world’s leading river cruise lines and be a part of the growing demand and trend for river cruising.

What, do you believe, makes river cruising unique?

River cruising is a wonderful style of holiday. I love nothing better than relaxing on the deck and watching the world pass by as you sail from one destination to the next. Sailing the most enchanting rivers from the luxury of your floating hotel; unpacking only once; indulging and experiencing the local cuisine and culture.

River cruising offers such an array of activities and experiences. Whether you want to spend the morning exploring the city you are docked in, cycle along the towpath into the next village, or simply admire the spectacular views from the sundeck; river cruising brings the world to your fingertips ready for you to explore.

Which river cruise lines have you cruised with?

I have sailed with AmaWaterways on a number of occasions across Europe and Asia. I have enjoyed overnight experiences with Amadeus and Uniworld and have spent time onboard a number of Emerald Waterways, CroisiEurope, Tauck, ARosa, Avalon Waterways, and Scenic vessels.

Are there any rivers or regions that you would particularly recommend?

The Rhine and the Danube rivers are great for first-time river cruisers as they offer spectacular scenery and give the perfect insight to a river cruise. Both of these rivers are guaranteed to captivate you into embarking on more river cruises.

If you have travelled on the Rhine and Danube and are looking for your next adventure, I would highly recommend the Lower Danube, which takes you on a journey through the ‘Iron Gates’ - the imposing gorge where the Danube breaks through the Carpathian Mountains. On this itinerary, you sail through 5 European Countries: Hungary, Croatia, Serbia, Bulgaria, and Romania.

What is your most memorable river cruising experience?

I had the most incredible trip to Vietnam and Cambodia, where I sailed on the Mekong River for 7 nights. I had researched and watched many programmes before travelling to this part of the world but none of this came close to actually being there and experiencing it first-hand.

The sailing takes you off the beaten track to experience and explore the hidden gems of Vietnam and Cambodia. Excursions included an oxcart ride in Kampong-Tralach. a local Cambodian village; a Buddhist blessing in Oudong; and a tour of the Royal Palace in Phnom Penh.

The culture, local people and food made this the most memorable journey. Truly the trip of a lifetime.

What are the unique factors of booking with Fred.\ River Cruises?

We have a team of personable staff with a wealth of first-hand experience and knowledge, each of which is on hand to assist you when making your booking.

We work alongside the world’s leading river cruise lines. We can access the very best prices and are able to survey the availability and range of options available to create your perfect river cruise.

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