This was our second Viking River cruise, travelling back to back from the "Europe" Rhone/Saone cruise.
Many of my comments are the same regarding the cabins, cleanliness, service, food.
It would be really good if Viking would put decent blockout curtains in the windows. On the nights in Rouen there was a carnival/funfair across the other bank of the river and the noise and lights were quite penetrating into our cabin, with the curtains doing little to keep out the bright and strobing carnival lights. Not Viking's fault I know, but blockout curtains would have removed the annoying flickering lights.
We enjoyed the trip to the Normandy beaches but would have preferred it if the guides had promoted the information centre at the American Cemetery. There was at least an hour and a half worth of material there to be viewed and discovered and it was disappointing that we only found it in the last half hour of our time there. No emphasis was put on this centre whatsoever and yet it contains more information than the guides gave us at any time. There are also clean, queueless toilets on the lower floor which were greatly appreciated by those who found them.
Our tour was a bit muddled because of a general strike which also involved lock masters - so we visited the ports in a different order than planned. It was good that the captain had this flexibility. Most of the little towns start to look a little bit the same after a while, but the guide who took our group on the tour of Auvers sur Oise made the town, and Van Gogh come alive - she was indeed "the best tour guide in the world"!!
This cruise was calmer, easier and more relaxed than the first cruise we did the previous week. This may have been part due to familiarity with the vessel, some of the crew and many of the passengers, but I certainly found it a more pleasant cruise. And of course, time in Paris at each end of the cruise was well spent.
We had an interesting experience when we, and others, were treated to a very sleazy display by a senior member of the ship's crew. Unfortunately it made it difficult to view this crew member with any respect for the rest of the cruise and as it was someone with whom one almost had to have daily contact, it was a little discomfiting. That wasn't Viking's fault either, just very poor judgement and behaviour by the person involved, which let down the company.