We love the Christmas atmosphere of eastern Europe but having been to Prague, Krakow & Budapest a number of times we were looking for a change, so after a bit of investigation opted for Vikings 'Romantic Danube' cruise in December 2010.
We were a bit apprehensive about our flight transfer they had arranged at Munich airport on the way out as we only had 45 minutes, but we should not have worried as everything went perfectly smoothly and we even had time for a complimentary coffee as we switched terminals. ere met at Budapest Airport by the assistant cruise director and taken to the ship by minibus, easy check in and settled in to our very nice cabin. As we were very familiar with Budapest we did our own thing the first day. We found the 'Open Seating' at meals very good as you could meet lots of your fellow passengers and found you would seek out people with similar interests to have dinner and made some wonderful friends from other country's who we have since had 'meet up's' with in various country's since.
Meals were great with local specialitys on the menu most days with the option of Steak or Roast Chicken or fish for the less adventurist. Beer & wine was free for lunch & dinner, with your glass never being allowed to get less than half full, unlike some cruise line where having Paid for a drinks package found wine waiters wore a 'Cloak of Invisibility'. We visited some wonderful City's & Towns where we always had a walking tour with a local guide with a radio headset so no having to crowd round to here there commentary. Where the ship was moored outwith walking distance from where you were visiting and you had free time to self explore a free shuttle bus was laid on so you could come and go back to the ship at your own pace. Going through the Main Canal lock system during the night as we slept was an amazing feet with not one passenger ever being woken up, for which the crew must be congratulated. Overall a fantastic cruise, but it was on the morning of departure back home that Viking really exceeded themselves. Most of Europe's airports were either closed or suffering severe disruption because of snow storms. Where airports were closed Viking had arranged hotel accommodation or a Free Gratis return journey till a suitable airport was found open. When we arrived at Munich airport we found people who were traveling with other company's who had been sleeping on camp beds in the airport for 4 days having been 'Dumped' and told to make there own arrangement's with their insurance company. Not so with Viking, everything arrange for a very comfortable extension to your holiday.