9 Viking River Viking Astrild Cruise Reviews for Romantic Cruises to Europe - River Cruise from Berlin

We traveled from Berlin to Prague on the Astrild. It was our first Viking Cruise and we were so impressed! The shore excursions were interesting and enjoyable. The amount of time spent at each location was sufficient and the ... Read More
We traveled from Berlin to Prague on the Astrild. It was our first Viking Cruise and we were so impressed! The shore excursions were interesting and enjoyable. The amount of time spent at each location was sufficient and the accommodations were fine. The crew really made all efforts to ensure that we were served well, and our program director was awesome! The program director was very knowledgeable and helpful. The food was great but there was so much! Many times we ate in the lounge for a light meal instead of eating in the dining area. We liked this option. Even more impressive was that I learned that Viking is a privately held company. It is apparent that the owners take very good care of their employees. They have a philosophy that a happy crew promotes a happy customer. You have to respect that! It works! We will definitely travel again on Viking. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
We chose this cruise because we wanted to see Prague, which contains an ancestral palace which belonged to our family. The fact that this cruise also stopped in Wittenberg, clinched the deal, since we are Lutheran, and especially ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we wanted to see Prague, which contains an ancestral palace which belonged to our family. The fact that this cruise also stopped in Wittenberg, clinched the deal, since we are Lutheran, and especially interested in the reformation. Between our cruise director, who has a master's degree in German history, and the many tour guides, we were treated to a historical and cultural smorgasbord. It was interesting to have some guides who grew up in West Germany, and some from East Germany, and hear, not only the history, but their personal experiences. We were impressed with all our guides. Also, there were usually choices for each tour. You could pick an all walking tour, bus + walking, or leisurely tour in Dresden, for example. We felt very welcome everywhere we went. We have been on tours where you are overbooked, and didn't feel that way on this tour. They seemed to know exactly when to give us some free time, and anticipate our needs. There was some free time in every port, and optional tours. We started the tour not knowing how to gain access to the palace in Prague, and through the help of our cruise director, were able to secure a private tour with the head curator, and hire a car to take us directly to its door. This was our first Viking river cruise, and we felt the service was very good. The food was excellent, and with our shipboard credit through AAA, we were able to upgrade our wine and include extra after-dinner drinks and a folk dinner outside of Prague. When we first saw the river, we were shocked at how small it was, but we were able to complete 95% of the cruise, and stay in each of the ports. There was a small room on board where you could get fancy or plain hot drinks--loved to get cappuccino every morning, and still or sparkling mineral water any time of day for no extra charge. The other people on our cruise were especially fun to be around, we met so many interesting people. We enjoyed the nighttime concerts and lectures, and especially the music trivia game. It seemed a low-key cruise, with a few smaller towns, and even a national park in Saxon Switzerland, as well as the larger cities of Berlin and Prague. We had a standard cabin, which was great. We heard the window was large for a cruise, and the cabin was super-efficient. We had laundry done, and it was delivered boxed and in tissue paper. Everything went smoothly, and we did not encounter any problems in the scheduling, tours, etc. We were a little confused with how many meals were included, but it turned out all the meals during the cruise, and breakfast in the hotels was always included. We were happy to be able to use our electronics without a converter. The towels were better than any of the towels at our luxury hotels, and even the bed was more comfortable that the beds at either of hotels. Viking meets you at the airport, and sees you off at the other end, even getting boarding passes, so we didn't really even need to think about anything once we arrive. Next time, we want to pick a cruise where we can stay longer on the ship! Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
My wife and I went on our first river cruise on the Elbe from Berlin to Prague. It was a wonderful experience and we greatly enjoyed getting to know the crew and other passengers. Highlights of the trip include fascinating trips to ... Read More
My wife and I went on our first river cruise on the Elbe from Berlin to Prague. It was a wonderful experience and we greatly enjoyed getting to know the crew and other passengers. Highlights of the trip include fascinating trips to Martin Luther's Wittenberg, Meissen porcelain factory, the beautiful Bastei region, and the Lobkowicz Palace. The crew was very welcoming and friendly. Our captain, Josef, was very approachable and his bridge was always open for visitors. The food by chef Gavin was outstanding, especially his sumptuous desserts. The guides were all very interesting, well informed and willing to share their own personal perspectives on recent historical events relating to Nazi and Soviet times. Our hotel director, Dorit, made sure all our needs were met and made a personal connection with each guest. Devin, our program director, was especially impressive, with his expert command of the German history, language and culture, always mixed in with his quirky style and sense of humor. We look forward to our next Viking cruise, but that crew will have high expectations to meet. Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
We had a great time on this cruise, our 4th with Viking. The crew were fabulous and the extra care we got from the Program director and staff was outstanding. The only concern was that it would have been nice to be on the ship longer and ... Read More
We had a great time on this cruise, our 4th with Viking. The crew were fabulous and the extra care we got from the Program director and staff was outstanding. The only concern was that it would have been nice to be on the ship longer and leave out the land stay. We enjoy going place to place and often stay on land on our own. We really like the sailing. I will say that during the land stays the attention to us and our comfort was nice. A hotel in Berlin closer to the city center would have been easier to access the sites that we were interested in seeing. A suggestion of a longer cruise with a couple days on shore would have made us happier. But the port of calls and escorted sightseeing is always good on Viking and this time too it did not disappoint. The tour guides showed their pride in their country and their English was impeccable. The food was fabulous and plentiful and the waitstaff attentive. We can't wait for another trip in the future. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
This was our second Viking Cruise. Our first, the Grand European, was spectacular. Since we signed up a little late for this trip (Elegant Elbe) we got one of the last rooms left which was at river level and very tiny but overall it was ... Read More
This was our second Viking Cruise. Our first, the Grand European, was spectacular. Since we signed up a little late for this trip (Elegant Elbe) we got one of the last rooms left which was at river level and very tiny but overall it was comfortable. The food on the ship was delicious as ever and we've always enjoyed the free beer and wine with dinner and lunch. Service by the wait staff and housekeepers was outstanding and the staff seemed to enjoy their jobs which always adds to the overall enjoyment of the trip. Our cruise director was a young American man who seemed to know absolutely everything about German and Czech history. This made it very interesting and really added to our understanding of German and Czech life before and after The Berlin Wall came down. This is also true of the tour guides that took us around and told us about their personal experiences under the Soviet Block. My husband, who had recently had a stroke, had a great deal of difficulty walking some of the tours on cobblestones at a very fast pace, sometimes in the dark. Another couple on the ship with walking difficulty had brought a wheelchair and I think they enjoyed the cruise a lot more than we did. I do not recommend this particular cruise to anyone with ambulatory difficulties. Most of the entertainment on the ship was historical lectures which were very interesting but painfully long. Overall, I would recommend the trip if history is your passion and it certainly did make me want to sign up for additional Viking Cruises. But if you want castles and cathedrals and beautiful scenery, I'd send you to the Rhine and Danube instead. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
This fall my wife and I celebrated our 40th wedding anniversary by taking our first ever cruise on the Elbe river from Berlin to Prague. We booked 18 months in advance and secured one of two Voyager Suites on the ship to celebrate in ... Read More
This fall my wife and I celebrated our 40th wedding anniversary by taking our first ever cruise on the Elbe river from Berlin to Prague. We booked 18 months in advance and secured one of two Voyager Suites on the ship to celebrate in style. We also extended our trip 2 days on both ends to enjoy two cities that have long been on my bucket list. In large part our Viking experience was excellent. Transfers were well done, hotels very nice in great locations, the ship(s) were spectacular, crews excellent, tours/guides very knowledgeable. The food was ok but a little disappointing - the chefs did their best with the underlying product provided, but it was a best good hotel convention food. So why only a 3 rating? We did not cruise! Viking notified us a few days before sailing that water levels were low and it was possible the boat would not be able to cruise the length of the river. This became a reality and after the first night we docked at Wittenberg and bussed to our locations. Mid-trip we packed up and did a ship swap to a sister ship docked in Dresden where again we bussed to our tour destinations. A couple weeks after returning I contacted Viking customer service to relate our high level of satisfaction of the product provided but requested a refund for the incomplete experience. Within a couple hours of writing my email a very professional customer service representative called, listened, and offered discounts on future trips. I respectfully declined - the principle in play is Viking failed to deliver on their brand promise; appropriate and reasonable compensation is a fair expectation. Bottom line. Great product but do your research on water levels before booking your cruise. High water can also prevent cruising so check with Viking, your travel agent, and look for reviews like this one before committing. Read Less
Sail Date August 2016
Wanted to try a river cruise. Chose Viking because it had a 2 for 1, and special on airline tickets . Also, excursions were included. It is called the elegance of the Elbe river. Started in Berlin and ended in Prague. The ship requires at ... Read More
Wanted to try a river cruise. Chose Viking because it had a 2 for 1, and special on airline tickets . Also, excursions were included. It is called the elegance of the Elbe river. Started in Berlin and ended in Prague. The ship requires at least 14 inches of water ; the Elbe is suppose to be one of the shallowest rivers in Germany, so Viking designed a ship specifically for this river. We did get an email that it couldn't go to a couple of destinations and would require a motor coach to reach the sites. We went down as far as it could, did a u tiun to go back to Dresden (not a bad place to end up in) loved the experience. It is the smallest, and there were about 96 people on the cruise. Met some fascinating people on the cruise. Excursions and guides were great. Staff ratio is 1 staff to 3 guests. Read Less
Sail Date July 2016
After many ocean cruises, we dove into a Viking Cruise down the Elbe River. Overall a fun time, very good food, active shipmates, and will definitely do again. Unfortunately we had a barge blocking our way down stream at Dresden. This took ... Read More
After many ocean cruises, we dove into a Viking Cruise down the Elbe River. Overall a fun time, very good food, active shipmates, and will definitely do again. Unfortunately we had a barge blocking our way down stream at Dresden. This took away some underway days. It was beginning of season and I never thought about chilly weather. However, it was part of the adventure. Regular cruisers on Viking River Cruises suggested other itineraries for more exciting scenario, which we plan to do. Ship holds less than 100 passengers and we had less than 80, so we had personal attention and enjoyed meeting new, interesting folks. No gym nor stationary bicycle. This was a problem because of the barge that blocked our way and we bussed to and from final sites last few days. Did a lot of walking so that offset no bike. Golf putting green on top deck. Crew fantastic. Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
Past favorable cruise. Would go again. Only disappointment was the blocking of the river by a barge that hit a bridge near Dresden resulting in our ports to be reduced and the most scenic portion of the cruise eliminated. Viking did do ... Read More
Past favorable cruise. Would go again. Only disappointment was the blocking of the river by a barge that hit a bridge near Dresden resulting in our ports to be reduced and the most scenic portion of the cruise eliminated. Viking did do the best to provide for a pleasant experience. The problem was not any fault of Viking. The ship was very nice and luxurious at all levels. It was a pleasure to have so many choices for meals. Large or small breakfasts and lunches. The relaxing dining rooms and lounges were a pleasure. The ability to navigate through out the ship at ease was comforting along with the smallness and uncrowded atmosphere. The shore excursions were good and some required quite a lot of walking which was a little unexpected but acceptable. We enjoyed the small ship and the newness. All of the staff were exceptionally accompanying. Our tour director was very well versed on all aspects of the cruise and very entertaining throughout the trip. The tour of the ship and the facilities on board was very informative. The Captain was especially accommodating in the pilot house as was the ships engineer pertaining to the operation of the mechanics. Embarkation and disembarking was very efficient and timely. All this made the trip relaxing with no worries or frustrations. We would recommend traveling via Viking to anyone interested in quality vacation time. As I mentioned in the beginning we were disappointed by the blocking of the river which was unforeseen by anyone. Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
Viking Astrild Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 4.6
Dining 4.0 4.6
Entertainment 4.0 4.4
Public Rooms 5.0 4.7
Fitness Recreation 2.0 3.6
Family 1.0 3.6
Shore Excursion 5.0 4.7
Enrichment 4.0 4.5
Service 5.0 4.8
Value For Money 5.0 4.4

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