Dunav Tours Adds Fleet Diversity


Dunav Tours added its largest vessel in 2019, the 135 meters long, the 90-passenger newbuild, the Adora, according to the 2020 European River Cruise Market Report by Cruise Industry News.

Based on the Danube in Ruse, Bulgaria, Dunav Tours started business in 1948 as Balkantourist, managers of luxury hotels. In 1983 it entered the riverboat market with two newbuilds. The Rousse and the Sofia began service in 1984 and Sofia remains with the company today. The Rousse and 110-passenger Heinrich Heine were sold in 2017 and replaced in 2019 by the Adora, custom-built at Den Breejen in the Netherlands.

Dunav is owned by Union Group, an investment firm in real estate, renewable energy, and other projects in Bulgaria.

Four of Dunav’s five Bulgaria-flagged ships are currently chartered longterm to German operators: Bonn-based Phoenix Reisen and Bremen-based Plantours. The fifth ship is operated by Dunav Tours. Other charter partners have included Cologne-based 1AVista and Boston-based Grand Circle Travel.

Georgi Momchev, executive and financial director of Dunav Tours, said that roughly 90 percent of his passengers are German. The ships also host passengers from around Europe and the UK, as well as a growing number of Chinese tour groups. Most passengers are retirees.

Dunav ships sail the Danube, Moselle, Rhine and Dutch waterways. They are sold as four star-plus products, receiving excellent passenger feedback and reports from charter partners, Momchev said.

At 135 meters long, the 90-passenger Adora launched to rave reviews sailing for Phoenix Reisen, he said. “They say it’s almost five stars.”

Also sailing with Phoenix Reisen are the 110-meter long, 162-passenger Ariana, and the 113.5-meter long, 200-passenger Sofia. With a 16-meter beam, the Sofia is more than 4.5 meters wider than the rest of the fleet.

Chartered to Plantours, the 2004-built Rousse Prestige is 110 meters long and carries 158 passengers. The 2003-built Elegant Lady is 110 meters long and carries 128 passengers and also chartered by Plantours. It was refurbished in 2017.

About the 2020 European Cruise River Market Report 

The new European Cruise Market Report provides a comprehensive look at the river cruise business with capacity metrics by river and brand, company profiles and much more. 100+ pages of insights. Learn more. 

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