4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2016
After doing 3 previous Viking Cruises, we believed that this relatively new itinerary would be interesting and that Viking would provide a good experience and it did not disappoint on most levels. Hotels were in excellent locations, tours ... Read More
After doing 3 previous Viking Cruises, we believed that this relatively new itinerary would be interesting and that Viking would provide a good experience and it did not disappoint on most levels. Hotels were in excellent locations, tours were interesting and gave great overviews of historical sites, etc. Busing from Prague to Krakow and Krakow to Warsaw provided adequate stops for snacks or stretching legs. In addition, bus trips always provided a stop in a town that allowed for exploration and lunch--good way to break up the trip, eventhough Viking buses are large and comfortable. Viking did a great job of breaking up groups into smaller, manageable ones that allowed for plenty room on the bus. Even had Polish vodka provided when the trip to Warsaw ended up being longer that projected due to traffic problems. Only real issue was the Viking representative who met us at the airport for departure--showed us to the wrong check in line and then disappeared on us even when he said he would be around to check on us. All in all, a great trip--so much to see and do and carried out with Viking efficiency. No water problems--fortunately, a whole day of heavy rains allowed us to go all the way down the Elbe even though we were given a warning a week ahead of time that the river could pose a problem. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2015
We chose the cruise on the Elbe River to see a different part of Germany than we had seen on previous Danube and Rhine river cruises. The summer and fall of 2015 were very problematic for river cruises on the Elbe due to the extremely low ... Read More
We chose the cruise on the Elbe River to see a different part of Germany than we had seen on previous Danube and Rhine river cruises. The summer and fall of 2015 were very problematic for river cruises on the Elbe due to the extremely low water level. We were informed just 5 days before we were due to leave the USA that our itinerary would be greatly altered and that we might not actually sail. We were previously aware of the possibility but were a little frustrated by the lack of advance notice but found out that they were truly making the decisions to sail or not one day at a time. Viking offered us penalty free cancellation or a $1000 voucher if we chose to sail. As pleased past passengers on Viking, we chose to sail. We were pleasantly surprised when we got to the hotel for the overnight stay in Berlin to find that we would be sailing, how far to be determined on a day to day basis. We were fortunate to be able to sail the first half of the itinerary, ending the cruising portion of the trip in Dresden. Dresden was a beautiful city and we docked near the city center. The second half of the "cruise" we remained docked and took day trips to the planned destinations with slight modifications. By being able to sail half the route, we avoided a ship swap, Viking's way of handling cruises when the water level was not high enough to allow any sailing. While this was not the cruise we had planned, Viking and the individual crew members went out of their way to make it a great experience. There were only 37 passengers (out of a maximum of 112) so everyone was moved to staterooms on the upper deck. This meant an upgraded cabin for us and many others. Extra excursions were added like a paddle boat ride in Dresden to see a little more of the river where it was too shallow for the Schumann to sail. With the small number of passengers and the regular crew, we all got very personalized attention. Our city tour groups were very small as in most cities they kept the number of local tour guides the same despite our reduced numbers. It was interesting to learn about life in East Germany after WWII. Our local guides had parents and grandparent who had lived through the war. One guide, a religious scholar, related that his grandfather was in the German SS; he was not ashamed of this as his grandfather had no choice other than to join or be shot. The trip to Terezin, a Czech concentration camp, was sobering but served to remind us of the horrors of WWII. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: October 2015
Low water in the Elbe meant that Viking had not sailed for 3 months. Half of our passengers, when given the opportunity, cancelled their trip, in the expectation that the ship would not sail. We chose to go ahead and we were rewarded ... Read More
Low water in the Elbe meant that Viking had not sailed for 3 months. Half of our passengers, when given the opportunity, cancelled their trip, in the expectation that the ship would not sail. We chose to go ahead and we were rewarded with an actual sail, merely failing to sail to the last port. All excursions took place and the staff worked tirelessly to make the cruise a success. The tour director was excellent and really made it a memorable tour. The river, itself, is not very busy and the scenery is rather samey, but there are good sections to the river. The beauty of this tour is the visit to many areas which were previously in East Germany and behind the Iron Curtain. This was very interesting. We particularly enjoyed the visit to the Meissen factory, and a visit to the lovely and interesting city of Dresden. We wouldn't go back, but only because we have now seen all we want to on the River Elbe. Great food on board throughout. Visits from local activities providing an enriching experience. All excursions were included. The was great value for money. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2015
We were already in Germany when we were notified that we could not cruise because of low water. Having traveled with Viking before we thought it would still be a wonderful trip, which it turned out to be. The Berlin Hilton was excellent, ... Read More
We were already in Germany when we were notified that we could not cruise because of low water. Having traveled with Viking before we thought it would still be a wonderful trip, which it turned out to be. The Berlin Hilton was excellent, First ship was the Astrild and the staff and the Chief were EXCELLENT, fantastic service and the room was very clean. The person I must commend was our Program Director Brenton Pieper, he was the BEST of ALL. He was always cheerful, had excellent tour guides assembled for our outings and programs on the ship as well. He made it a point to have lunch or dinner with the guests and we had interesting conversations. Well organized and keep us well informed as to what would be happening everyday, plus when we had to move from the Astrild to the Beyla. We saw so many things I cannot pick a favorite since everything we saw and heard was fantastic, aariving in Potsdam & being able walk part way across the Glienicke Bridge learning how spies were exchanged and visit Sanssouci Palance and hear facts about "Old Fritz" with his 11 dogs and seeing the graves of the 11 dogs and his finally together after many years. To learn about Martin Luther and Katherina. Emjoyed seeing the Cantileveres staircase in by Hartenfels Castle in Torgau. Loved touring the Meissen FactoryEnjoyed Dresden, (especially since my husbands father came from there) and seeing Kohnigstein Fortress it was truly impressive. My husband enjoyed the Saxon Switzerland: on the Elbe tour and last the tour of Prague, we took the three extension and really enjoyed all the sights and museums plus we went to a concert which was excellent. Glad we decided to go even learning of the low water, saw everything we would have seen cruising and the busses were modern, and clean and the drivers curtious. Thank you for a great trip Viking. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2015
This was our second Viking River cruise. Did a pre-trip extension in Berlin which was fab. Right in the heart of the city @ the Hilton, w/i walking distance of great food and prominent sights. Saw the Queen of England, spent a day in ... Read More
This was our second Viking River cruise. Did a pre-trip extension in Berlin which was fab. Right in the heart of the city @ the Hilton, w/i walking distance of great food and prominent sights. Saw the Queen of England, spent a day in the main train station just train watching & exploring, and enjoying sight, sounds & tastes of Berlin. On to Potsdam, our ship & headed to Wittenberg. My wife had a slight mishap and tripped going up the stairs from the dining room, and badly bruised her left leg and knee. For the rest of the trip, Sandy was the toast of the whole staff, with one staffer offering to give Sandy a shower. After a few days she was using a wheel chair to get around, but I continued to see the sight at every port. As we headed south on the Elbe, the water level kept dropping so that by the time we got to Meisen, we had to stop and do our remaining tours totally by bus, which was ok. We understand from local service providers that this happens frequently on the Elbe in summer. Plus we were in a major heat wave with temps getting to 95F (however, we were given a nice cash incentive when we book our next trip). Got to Prague where we also extended. My highlight was staying with Family in Litvinov & seeing where my families were from in Masti & Ujezd nod Zbecknem. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2015
We were a grouip of six on the Viking Beyla Elbe River cruise in early June - One night in a nice Berlin Hotel (Steigenberger), seven nights aboard the Viking Beyla and One night at the end at the Prague Hilton. We arrived a week ealry and ... Read More
We were a grouip of six on the Viking Beyla Elbe River cruise in early June - One night in a nice Berlin Hotel (Steigenberger), seven nights aboard the Viking Beyla and One night at the end at the Prague Hilton. We arrived a week ealry and stayed in the outstanding Hotel Adlon in Berlin and stayed 5 days after in Prague in the Hotel Augustine to extend the trip. The Viking Beyla is a new smaller version of the Viking Longships which was built for traveling on the shallower Elbe River - see ship review below. Sadly when we had boarded the ship our outstanding Viking Program Director Radim and the ship's captain had the unhappy task of announcing that the river level was so low that the ship would not be able to sail as scheduled. So for four days we were in Mandenburg and Radim (and would guess large Viking support group somewhere) had to reorganize the schedule day by day to somewhow still offer coach tours to several of the sights we had been scheduled to sail to (the distances are not as great between stops as one would think). Viking has a fleet of deluxe coaches and great drivers who with Radim and his staff did the very best possible to be sure we were offered as much as possible while our river cruiser became a riverside hotel. We cannot say enough about the grace under pressure Radim and the Viking people handled all this last minute problem of making the very best of the no sailing/water level problem. Once we were able to sail it was a 3 day joy. Unfortunately the vistas on the earlier part of the trip are mostly flat farmland. Only when you get further up the river in Saxony do you get the beautiful mountains, castles, etc that you hope for but this was all cut short because of the schedule changes necessary. All in all it was a sad disappointment not to have been able to really enjoy the river cruise we had been looking forward to for so long. VIKING BEYLA as mentioned is beautiful and new. It is beautifully appointed and has a nice feel carrying only 98 passengers. The rooms are modern sleek, well appointed and well designed although on the small size as on all river ships. The forward main lounge opens up to include a nice outdoor covered terrace on the bow (a great pianist entertains). The dining room one deck below also has great windows thus is bright and well laid out for one sitting open dining. The food is just outstanding - all meals. Thanks to the great chef and his staff. The ships entire staff is tops and do everything possibnle to make you feel at home. In particular we salute Georgi who was both behind the bar and in the dining room and made sure the very nice wines kept flowing with his jolly smile. Our waiter Pater (as all the dining room staff) was on top of everything as was Andrea who was the main overseer in the bar. Viti our room stewardess was as good as it gets. So cheers to Viking, the Beyla and all the staff who were great in a unfortunate situation. I cannot rate shore excursions in that they were all not as planned and cannot give this trip a five star excellent that it surely would have been had we been able to make the planned schedule. We would love to do this again someday when it is an actual river "cruise". Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: October 2013
I was a newly minted 61-year old and my daugheter was nigh onto 40, and from the Viking River Cruise advertisements, we were expecting the passengers to be in the same age range. Imagine our surpise when they were more like in their ... Read More
I was a newly minted 61-year old and my daugheter was nigh onto 40, and from the Viking River Cruise advertisements, we were expecting the passengers to be in the same age range. Imagine our surpise when they were more like in their 70's or higher! My daughter said she felt like she'd just step into the casting call for the movie "Cacoon"! Since we're were on the ship way too much do to cruising WAY too slow up the Elbe River and thus were spending tons of time with the other passengers, it did have a negative impact for us and our expectations. And since it was always communcal dining, you were always stuck listening about someone's recent ailments, what they did in high school (who cares?!), etc. And there's no room service, so it was either skip the meal or eat as fast as you could to escape. The food, crew, excursions, rooms, etc. were all top notch - not a compliant there at all. The hotels were really nice and all of the airpost transferes were done really well. Another thing we noticed is that on VRC's itinerary ads, they talk about you visitng various ports, but they never say how long you'll actually be at the port, and due to us being on the "slowboat to China", we were very dissapoiinted in how little time we had in the various cityies along the way. I'd rather have a speedier boat and stay longer in the variuos ports than vice versa! The room was nice, albeit small; but it's a small ship so that it can cruise the Elebe river. But there was a good deal of storage for as small it was. The housekeeping staff were absolutely amazing, couldn't have been friendlier or more helpful. Read Less

Find a Cruise

Easily compare prices from multiple sites with one click
Compare and book excursions for your next cruise