Launch of TUI Isla completes fleet of river cruise ships ahead of summer trips


The UK’s largest tour operator has launched the third and final ship in its fleet of river cruise ships ahead of the upcoming summer holiday season. TUI Isla has set sail on its first-ever route, Rhine Explorer 2, after a christening event.

The Spring Sailing started from Basel, Switzerland, before heading to Strasbourg, France, then to some well-known German cities such as Rudesheim, Koblenz and Cologne before ending the trip in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. The naming ceremony took place as part of a special trip for TUI retail staff, before their first customer sails.

Ship’s godmother Courtney Smith, a homeworker at TUI, pressed the button for the traditional bottle smash. Courtney has worked at TUI for five years and was appointed Patron in 2020, but due to the pandemic she has only been able to carry out her duties now.

She said: “I am honored to be the godmother of TUI Isla. It is amazing to finally be able to christen her, and the fact that she is the last ship in the fleet makes her really special. TUI River Cruises has been so popular with our customers and having sailed TUI Isla now I can see why.

“It’s been a really special experience and I feel incredibly lucky to play such an important role in the brand.”

The river cruise company has expanded its summer 2022 offer with two new routes and a new stopover. The new Treasures of the Main itinerary presents the new stopover in Aschaffenburg, a city that combines tradition and modernity.

Legends of the Rhine is a new seven-night round trip to Frankfurt with stops in Cologne, Bonn and Koblenz. Passengers sailing this route departing August 12 will also experience the Rhine in Flames Festival – Germany’s oldest and largest fireworks display.

Chris Hackney, TUI UK Cruise’s Managing Director, added: “We are delighted to complete our TUI river cruises floats with TUI Isla setting sail. Its addition allows us to visit ports of call and destinations where we have never been before.

The sumptuous Observatory bar on board TUI Isla

“We’ve had incredible feedback from customers sailing on TUI Maya and TUI Skyla since their launch last year, so we’re delighted to be able to offer even more itineraries to our customers. TUI Isla is our third vessel, complementing the TUI River Cruises line up, so we are delighted to be able to fully operate as a river cruise line and to welcome new and returning guests aboard.

For the latest TUI holiday offers, check here.

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