In August, Kirra – part of our Marketing team in Australia – sailed away on our 8-day Danube Dreams river cruise with Avalon Waterways.  

It’s been researched that cruise passengers gain more than just treasured memories and new friends…they will also take home an estimated 450 grams of weight per day of their cruise!  

Happening upon quaint villages like this whilst biking through the Wachau Valley

While I am feeling a little heavier than when I left home, I did achieve some balance on an 8-day river cruise along the Danube! Here’s what my health and fitness endeavours looked like onboard Avalon Waterways, a basic guide to keeping active and maintaining balance on a river cruise. 

Choose your food wisely  

Full disclosure: while I had good intentions of choosing the healthier food options while onboard, I failed miserably. My proudest moments were skipping the bread during a few meals, but this was just to save space for the afternoon tea – a huge slice of freshly baked cake. Yum! 


Enter: Avalon Fresh. For those with stronger willpower than me, there are plenty of healthy options available at the breakfast and lunch buffets and during à la carte dinner service. Just look for the Avalon Fresh icon on the dinner menus and you’re set.  

Start your day right 

Each day before breakfast, our Adventure Host instructed a light yoga class allowing me to limber up for the day ahead. The best part? On a nice morning, yoga is on the Sky Deck so you can take in the views of a new cityscape at the same time. I didn’t use it but for those with sore muscles, there was also a heated whirlpool on the Sky Deck too. 

Take advantage of the facilities on board 

On days where I needed more than a stretch at yoga, I took advantage of the Fitness Centre on board. While it is compact, there’s plenty of equipment to burn some calories. There are several cardio machines, yoga blocks and mats, a full set of hand weights, and selection of resistance bands.  

Choose Active excursions and activities  

While my dietary habits were less than desirable, I’d say my physical activity was on par. 

A hike from Passau’s Oberhaus to the Ilz River

On a typical day, Avalon provides a choice of included activities in the morning (where you will pick one) with the afternoon free for optional excursions. In the pursuit of being healthy, I typically took the morning Active option (such as a hike) over a city tour.  

Bike riding
Views for days!

By day 2 or 3, it was obvious that there was a little gang of us who were keen to be more active. Our Adventure Host took notice and offered to take us on a long bike ride (not part of the itinerary). Instead of staying onboard while our ship was sailing between ports, we rode the 28-kilometre stretch between Melk and Dürnstein in Austria. While it was mostly flat, there were occasional inclines inducing a decent leg burn. It was absolutely worth it for views of quaint wineries and snaking through cute villages! 

While you are on holiday, Avalon endeavours to make your cruise a home-away-from-home. This includes the ability to maintain some balance (food-wise and/or exercise-wise)! Take a look at our range of river cruises today! 

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