• Write a Review
  • Boards
  • Log In
  • Find a Cruise
  • Deals
  • Excursions
  • More

Scenic Azure Review

2019 Best River
View More

Find a Scenic Azure Cruise from £2,598

Scenic Azure
4.5 / 5.0
53 reviews

Pros
Included drinks, Wi-Fi, tours, butler service and laundry; the plunge pool offers cool relief
Cons
The bar needs more staff in evenings, and drink/water service on the sun deck
Bottom Line
The Portuguese crew help create an authentic experience on a comfy, all-inclusive ship

About

Passengers
96

Crew
38

Passenger to Crew
2.53:1

Launched
2016

Shore Excursions
38
Sails To
Europe
Sails From
Scenic Cruise Deals
Louise Goldsbury
Cruise Critic Contributor

Scenic Azure Overview

In 2016, Scenic became the first non-Portuguese company to operate on the Douro River without a European partner or chartered ships. That means the Australian line is free to uphold its high standards in crew, service, dining, touring and onboard accommodation.

Free Price Drop Alerts
Get tomorrow's price drops
250,000+ people have entered their email
By proceeding, you agree to Cruise Critic’s Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.

The purpose-built ship is shorter and narrower than Scenic's other vessels in order to navigate Portugal's winding river and its many locks, but it still feels spacious and easy to get around. Despite the smaller size, Scenic Azure does not lack any of the frills to which past passengers have become accustomed. It has a plunge pool on the sun deck, butler service for all cabins and six dining options. Then there's the long list of inclusions, from the free drinks to a complimentary bag of laundry (same-day service in most cases).

Adding to the luxury experience is a crew-to-passenger ratio of almost 1:2. Most crew are Portuguese, disarmingly friendly and passionate about their country. Their affable nature bolsters the relaxed vibe onboard, while the department leaders keep everything running smoothly.

With a maximum of 96 passengers and only one lounge, mingling happens easily -- especially before and after dinner. Restaurant tables are set for two, four or six, allowing couples or solo travelers to sit together or move around each day.

While sailing, passengers like to watch the scenery from the sun deck, which is the best vantage point for panoramic views of the valley. However, it can be very hot, even in the shaded area, particularly in July and August when temperatures approach 104 degrees Fahrenheit. There is no bar on the sun deck so one area of improvement would be better, regular service of cold water (or beer) to thirsty passengers.

The ship's decor is clean and contemporary, with a lot of black, white and gold. Keep an eye out for the Portuguese art, such as a wall of sardines in the main dining room. Cabins are compact and have ensuite bathrooms and comfortable, adjustable beds. All but six have enclosed balconies, known as sun lounges, with floor-to-ceiling windows that can be opened halfway down with the touch of a button.

Scenic Azure would suit couples, especially those enjoying retirement, who appreciate good food, wine, mountain views and a slow pace. This is not a ship for families, as there are no kids program or facilities.


Top Scenic Azure Itineraries

Scenic Azure
delightful douro with lisbon and madrid

Lisbon, Lisbon, Lisbon, Lisbon, Porto (Leixoes), Pinhao, Porto (Leixoes), Porto (Leixoes), Porto (Leixoes)

View All Scenic Azure Itineraries (8)

Fellow Passengers

As an Australian company, Scenic attracts a majority of Australian passengers, along with Brits, Americans, Canadians and New Zealanders. Most are retired couples in their 60s or 70s. On the Douro itinerary, it is usually the passengers' first time in Portugal but likely to be their second, third or fourth river cruise.


Scenic Azure Dress Code

In the hot climate of Portugal, passengers dress for cool comfort. Men wear shorts and T-shirts, but are asked to wear trousers at dinner; a short-sleeved shirt is OK, and jackets and ties are not required. Women dress casually by day and might change into something smarter in the evening. A light cardigan or shawl is recommended to cope with the chilly air conditioning. A hat and sunglasses are essential for tours. Bring your swimwear if you plan to take a dip in the pool.


Scenic Azure Inclusions

Almost everything is included in the cruise fare -- alcoholic and nonalcoholic drinks, vtips, shore excursions, butler service for all cabins and 1 kilogram of vlaundry. For purchases of fine wines and port (not on the complimentary list), vmassages and extra laundry, the onboard currency is the euro.


Free Price Drop Alerts
Get tomorrow's price drops
250,000+ people have entered their email
By proceeding, you agree to Cruise Critic’s Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.

Find a Cruise

Scenic Azure Ratings

CategoryEditorMember
Cabins5.04.8
Dining5.04.5
Entertainment3.04
Public Rooms4.04.6
Fitness Recreation3.04.1
Family1.0N/A
Enrichment3.04.4
Service5.04.7
Value For Money5.04.4

Already Booked?

Get to know who you'll be sailing with

More about Scenic Azure

Where does Scenic Azure sail from?

Scenic Azure departs from Lisbon

Where does Scenic Azure sail to?

Scenic Azure cruises to Porto (Leixoes), Pinhao and Lisbon

How much does it cost to go on Scenic Azure?

Cruises on Scenic Azure start from £2,598 per person.

Is Scenic Azure a good ship to cruise on?

Scenic Azure won 1 award over the years, including Best River in 2019.

Awards and Recognition

Cruise Critic Cruisers’ Choice

  • 2019 Best River

Scenic Azure Member Reviews

Scenic Azure
Ang16
Sail Date: Aug 2019
The day of embarkation on Scenic Azure was welcoming and carried out in a very professional manner.... Read More
Scenic Azure
Wally55
Sail Date: Aug 2019
Flew in via Barcelona, where we stayed a night to recuperate from the 24hrs of flights from Sydney, and then flew direct to Porto and Azure.... Read More
Scenic Azure
speterd
Sail Date: Aug 2019
Guide was from the Scenic Azure and she was good. Day 3 -Entre-os-Rios. Highlights: Quinta Aveleda.... Read More
Scenic Azure
Poshnosh
Sail Date: Jul 2019
Thank you scenic Azure.x... Read More

Scenic Fleet

Scenic Ruby
5.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating

98 reviews

Scenic Ruby, launched in 2009, is one of Scenic's popular "space ships," designed to offers plentiful public and cabin space – among the highest passenger space ratio in the industry.

Scenic Ruby Cruises to Europe View All Scenic Ruby Cruises
Scenic Diamond
4.5 / 5.0
Editor Rating


Scenic Diamond, launched in 2008, is one of Scenic's popular "space ships." The cabins and ship are beautifully appointed, crew is excellently trained and dining is exceptional.

Scenic Crystal
4.5 / 5.0
Editor Rating


Scenic Crystal, launched in 2012, is one of Scenic's popular "space ships." It's a luxury river ship that offers excellent service, great food and comfortable spaces.

Scenic Tsar

The 112-passenger Scenic Tsar was relaunched in 2012. It's not a new riverboat, but the refurbishment was so extensive, that it's registered as a new vessel.

Scenic Sapphire
4.5 / 5.0
Editor Rating


Scenic Sapphire, launched in 2008, is one of Scenic's popular "space ships." This class nods to a design that offers plentiful public and cabin space – among the highest passenger space ratio in the industry.

Scenic Pearl

One of Scenic's "space ships" offering "Sun Lounge" balconies in all rooms, which simultaneously make cabins feel airy while also making the space usable in all weather.

Scenic Jewel

Highlights include "Sun Lounge" balconies, which give cabins an airy feel and make balcony space usable in fair and inclement weather, and multiple dining options.

Scenic Jade

Scenic Jade offers the intellectually curious passenger a fine sampler of excursions along more than 700 miles of waterways, from Amsterdam to Budapest.

Scenic Gem
4.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating


The 128-passenger Scenic Gem was custom-built to sail on France's Seine River and features a unique design and cutting-edge technology.

Scenic Opal

The 169-passenger Scenic Opal boasts spacious cabins and public areas, as well as a splash pool and resistence swimming pool. Fares include all excursions, drinks and gratuities.

Scenic Jasper

Scenic Jasper is Scenic's 11th "Space Ship" -- so called because of the higher-than-average amount of space dedicated to public areas. Fares include all excursions, drinks and gratuities.

Scenic Eclipse

Featuring the sleek profile of a luxury super yacht, the all-suite, 228-passenger Scenic Eclipse will be the first ocean cruise ship from Australian line Scenic.

Scenic Spirit
5.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating


Scenic Spirit’s all-inclusive cruises come with complimentary beverages, a pool and spa, gourmet dining, luxurious bedding and L'Occitane toiletries.

Scenic Aura
5.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating

The 22-suite Scenic Aura, launched in 2016, sails the Irrawaddy River in Myanmar between Mandalay and Pyay with an almost 1:1 staff-to-guest ratio.

Scenic Amber

Launched in 2016, Scenic Amber has capacity for 169 passengers and 51 crew, this all-suite river ship offers a contemporary cruising experience.

Scenic Azure
4.5 / 5.0
Editor Rating


In 2016 Scenic became the first non-Portuguese company to operate on the Douro River, which means the luxury Australian line can uphold its high standards.

Want to cruise smarter?
Get expert advice, insider tips and more.
By proceeding, you agree to Cruise Critic’s Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.
Cookie Consent