7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2017
My wife and I have now completed four river cruises with Scenic and yet again we have not been disappointed, it was excellent. The cabin was clean and tidy at all times by the housing keeping service, the butler service was great being on ... Read More
My wife and I have now completed four river cruises with Scenic and yet again we have not been disappointed, it was excellent. The cabin was clean and tidy at all times by the housing keeping service, the butler service was great being on call at all times, the balcony is unique to Scenic with the electric opening and closing windows that allow for you to sit out there regardless of the weather. The dining as usual was first class from the light lunches to the speciality table restaurants on board and being remembered by the crew for drinks and other services was especially great. As for the activities as we have come to expect from Scenic they were all great and well timed to not be totally exhausting but very informative and a wonderful experience each time. And we will always recommend Scenic for those who want luxury and an exceptional adventure that is value for money. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2017
Price & itinerary and our availability to travel with our good friends. Also, have cruised with Viking before and knew of the high standard. This was our 3rd cruise with the same friends and really enjoyed it. The weather was very ... Read More
Price & itinerary and our availability to travel with our good friends. Also, have cruised with Viking before and knew of the high standard. This was our 3rd cruise with the same friends and really enjoyed it. The weather was very hot but that is something that Viking cannot control. Crew was very solicitous about offering bottles of water each time we embarked or disembarked the ship. Tour guides tried to keep us in the shade on tours as much as possible. We enjoyed all the various tours of wineries and wine tastings. Also the visits to chateaux. We loved the surprise lunch at Chateau Siaurac hosted by the ship's chef and entire wait staff. The crew, down to the last one, were courteous, helpful, professional and friendly. Our cabin steward, Helen, always greeted us with a big smile and always asked if we needed anything. She is a tremendous asset to Viking. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: May 2017
The Quality of service and the food was excellent. However, we would recommend that meals be prepared with lower sodium. Some of us are on low sodium diet for health reason. This was not too much of a problem due to the wide variety of ... Read More
The Quality of service and the food was excellent. However, we would recommend that meals be prepared with lower sodium. Some of us are on low sodium diet for health reason. This was not too much of a problem due to the wide variety of foods available. We did read about this available option after the cruise. All the Staff working on board, from the manager to the housekeepers, were excellent, very attentive to our needs. They were very friendly and helpful. When describing our positive experiences to friends and family members, we always recommend viking cruises to our friends. Introduction lectures on the region were always excellent. Basic lessons on language were very good, though we already have basic knowledge of French. Tour guides were very informative. The cheese and wine event on the first day of the tour was very helpful for tour members to get to introduce themselves. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2016
My wife and I cruised on the second to last sailing of the season for the Viking Forseti. It was our first Viking river cruise(Uniworld previously) and was a pleasant experience, especially since the weather couldn't have been better: ... Read More
My wife and I cruised on the second to last sailing of the season for the Viking Forseti. It was our first Viking river cruise(Uniworld previously) and was a pleasant experience, especially since the weather couldn't have been better: sunny and mid to high 50's every day. That was important because the itinerary's shore excursions were not exciting and would have been a real trudge in the cold or rain. The emphasis of the cruise is on wine and there were plenty of opportunities to visit vineyards as well as taste wine on board. With the exceptions of Bordeaux and St. Emilion, the small towns were not very exciting, mainly serving as a gateway to the chateaux and wine tasting excursions. There were always regional dishes on the menu. We actually preferred breakfast and lunch over dinner. It helps if you are fond of duck, which appeared almost daily. The cruise director, Susie, was a hoot. Very efficient and organized yet entertaining. Cabins were cleaned every morning by the time we returned from breakfast. Most of the passengers we spoke with were returning Viking cruisers. Read Less
25 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2016
On whole, the trip met our expectations and we will most likely take a future river cruise with Viking, but there were some quirks that folks should understand if they are not familiar with Bordeaux or if they are new to river cruises (or ... Read More
On whole, the trip met our expectations and we will most likely take a future river cruise with Viking, but there were some quirks that folks should understand if they are not familiar with Bordeaux or if they are new to river cruises (or Viking river cruises in particular). From prior posters' reports, we knew in advance that there would not be much cruising on this trip. If that had been a surprise, we would have been very disappointed. We spent 3 of 7 nights docked in the city of Bordeaux, and the other 4 nights in tiny ports with virtually nothing to distinguish themselves by other than their proximity to shore excursions and the opportunity to witness the crew docking the vessel. Bordeaux is a beautiful city with accessible public transportation, and the vessel's dock was adjacent to a tram stop, making it very easy to get around independently while in port. In hindsight, I'd have preferred that we just stayed in port in Bordeaux each night, and integrated the cruising element by some day cruising up and down the rivers. This was my husband's second Viking River Cruise, and my first. He oversold me on the culinary experience based on his first cruise on the Rhine. We were both underwhelmed by most of the food on the Bordeaux cruise (although there were some notable exceptions) and I disliked the rigidity of the dinner service. On several days we had private all-day winery tours that included lovely three course meals in local restaurants. The last thing we could handle was a full-on heavy dinner on board ship at 7pm sharp. It would have been nice to have the option of having a light meal served later in the evening. We were also somewhat disappointed by the Chateau Kirwin meal on Thursday. The venue was nice, but Chef thought it would be fun for the Americans to serve them turkey on Thanksgiving, not realizing that you can't replicate a home-cooked Thanksgiving meal for 120 people and that many of us traveled over Thanksgiving to get away from tradition. The Chateau Kirwin wine they served was disappointing and the wait staff refused to open the superior wine that we'd brought with us. I realize in hindsight that it would have been in poor taste to drink someone else's wine at the Chateau Kirwin but I resent having been forced into that situation in the first place. If we'd been docked in Bordeaux instead of Pauillac that night, we could have just gone into town and had a nice dinner on our own instead, but that wasn't an option. If you prefer the group travel experience to independent travel (and frankly, that is the demographic that Viking is reaching out to), you would certainly have enjoyed this trip and would find my disappointments a bit puzzling. For the group traveler, the choice of shore excursions was varied and comprehensive. I think that is one of the things that Viking really does well. The program director on this cruise, Lorin, is a gem and Viking should be commended for its employment of his many talents. He was entertaining, thought-provoking, hard working and genuinely engaged in the mission of bringing local culture to the Viking guests. The ship was very clean, our stateroom had plenty of storage capacity and the staff was hard-working and friendly. We chose this Viking cruise as a marital compromise (I dislike group travel of any sort, and especially boats, but my husband does not share my feelings. More than anything, he hates to pack and unpack and the pressure of selecting a restaurant to dine in each night, and he enjoys the socialization that is available on-board). The trip met or exceeded my low expectations, and it also met or exceeded my husband's higher expectations. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2016
We came for the wine region and were blown away by the food on-board the ship. It was unexpectedly terrific. The wine list wines were inexpensive if you want to upgrade for a special bottle, particularly if you need to spend on-board ... Read More
We came for the wine region and were blown away by the food on-board the ship. It was unexpectedly terrific. The wine list wines were inexpensive if you want to upgrade for a special bottle, particularly if you need to spend on-board credits. The room was clean and quiet. The staff was very efficient and friendly. The excursions and guides were very good with some of the paid excursions providing very nice wine tastings. One night was dinner at a Chateau and that was wonderful. The terrace is available for evening meals for when you don't want the noise and crowds in the main dining room. The food is the same as in the main dining room, plus special appetizers. Service is also very personal on the terrace. We didn't participate in many of the on-board enrichment lectures and events, but we heard good things from people who did. We also took the 3 day pre-tour in the Loire Valley and the 3 day post tour in Paris. Again, very nice and the hotel in Tours (Chateau Belmont) was terrific, both room and food. No negatives. A very pleasant cruise. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2016
This is our second AMAWaterWays cruise and we were again rewarded with a thoroughly enjoyable river cruise. The Amadolce cabin was spotless and in excellent condition as were the public areas. The crew with Captain Danny and Cruise ... Read More
This is our second AMAWaterWays cruise and we were again rewarded with a thoroughly enjoyable river cruise. The Amadolce cabin was spotless and in excellent condition as were the public areas. The crew with Captain Danny and Cruise Director Helene was one of the best we've experienced in over 30 years of ocean and river cruising. They were friendly, attentive, responsive and prompt. The tours were great and well paced and gave an insightful education on French wines. The food and wine selection onboard was very competitive with some of the best local restaurants in the Bordeaux region. The wait staff was fun, friendly, responsive and made us feel that the Amadolce was our river home for the week. Housekeeping was impeccable and Georgina, our stewardess, was a delight with her engaging personality and warm greeting in addition to the care she gave our cabin. My wife had a post-operation medical problem toward the end of our cruise and the staff was on top of the medical situation instantly, brought a doctor on board and helped us get treatment that she needed. The Purser, Captain and Cruise Director all demonstrated concern, empathy and acted to help ease my wife's issues. We were very grateful. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2016
Great time. Ship and Staff was first class. Lorin, the Program Director does a great job. All of the excursions were very well done. All of our tour guides were excellent and spoke very good English. Getting on and off the ship was a ... Read More
Great time. Ship and Staff was first class. Lorin, the Program Director does a great job. All of the excursions were very well done. All of our tour guides were excellent and spoke very good English. Getting on and off the ship was a breeze. This is a cruise that is definitely wine-centric, but there were some cruisers just along for the ride. Food and beverage offerings were nice. We were a group of 6 and there was always something on the menu that we liked. Bordeaux, the city, is a nice place to visit and would recommend spending a day pre or post cruise. St. Emilion, one of the ports, is a city that is worth spending more time. The ship is kept very clean and the staff goes out of their way to make sure you are having a good time. We will definitely look at another Viking cruise in the future. Read Less
13 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2016
I sailed in late April through the beginning of May on the Gironde River with Road Scholar. We embarked in Bordeaux in the evening and it went smoothly; the crew took our bags to our rooms right away. My previous river cruise experience ... Read More
I sailed in late April through the beginning of May on the Gironde River with Road Scholar. We embarked in Bordeaux in the evening and it went smoothly; the crew took our bags to our rooms right away. My previous river cruise experience was with AMA-waterways on the Danube River, so that would be my point of comparison. The cabin was spacious with plenty of storage in closets and on shelves; I traveled solo, so had lots of room. The Ship had mostly French passengers and that was the major language. Any translations for the English-speaking guests was abbreviated. The ability to speak French would be a definite plus. Our group dined together at assigned tables at a fixed time. The food was good, but it was a set menu and nothing fancy ( like an exotic or decadent desert). Breakfast was the least good meal with runny eggs and boil your own eggs (in not very hot water). You could review the menu in the morning and let the purser know if you needed to have something different, but you couldn't say what. The staff was outstanding and worked very hard to please. Jose, the purser, was also outstanding. He always had a smile, no matter what was going on. Our shore excursions were handled by our group leader, so I cannot comment on those offered by the ship. We had wine (of our choice) with lunch and dinner and open bar at other times. The Croisi trip was a very different experience from the AMA one. It was less luxurious, but it was also less expensive. I would sail on Croisi again and I would recommend it, but it helps to know what to expect. Read Less
Sail Date: April 2016
The staff was the greatest. They would answer any request with 'of course'. Whatever you wanted was delivered. Every effort was made to guarantee your trip was perfect. The food was unique to the region but you could order ... Read More
The staff was the greatest. They would answer any request with 'of course'. Whatever you wanted was delivered. Every effort was made to guarantee your trip was perfect. The food was unique to the region but you could order other items if you wanted 'regular' food. The wine flowed like water. There was an elevator from the dining room to the lounge. If the water level was not right you might not sail to one destination but they did provide a bus. The level of the river is out of their control. If we could not sail to the next port we did cruise on the river so you felt you were on a ship and not a waterfront hotel. The cabins are small but you don't spend much time in them. There are plenty of public areas to sit and enjoy the cruise. I have given up sea cruises in favor of river cruises. The ships are smaller and you have more personal service. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2016
We are avid wine enthusiasts and collectors and Bordeaux wine is our favorite. So we were very excited to be able to taste wine right in Bordeaux. I will never drink a Saint Emillion again without thinking about it's beautiful ... Read More
We are avid wine enthusiasts and collectors and Bordeaux wine is our favorite. So we were very excited to be able to taste wine right in Bordeaux. I will never drink a Saint Emillion again without thinking about it's beautiful city. The staff on board the Forsetti was absolutely fantastic. Everyone was so nice and friendly. The food was delicious and there was a lot to choose from at each meal. The wine on board was also excellent. The room was very comfortable and the movie selections were outstanding. We did go to one concert and it was very professional and of the highest quality. The guides were also outstanding, especially Bridget and her tour of Bordeaux. We did two of the optional tours: Chateau Siaurac and The Camus cognac tasting and blending seminar. Both of these were quite wonderful experiences. The dinner at Chateau Kirwin was spectacular with probably the best wine we experienced on the trip. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2016
Bordeaux is a beautiful city;we had been there before but enjoyed exploring more of it. It has the elegance of Paris without the traffic. Viking Forseti is a very comfortable boat with first class service. Everyone of the staff was ... Read More
Bordeaux is a beautiful city;we had been there before but enjoyed exploring more of it. It has the elegance of Paris without the traffic. Viking Forseti is a very comfortable boat with first class service. Everyone of the staff was extremely courteous. Touches such as the provision of umbrellas and a drink when we returned from excursions were appreciated.The food was ambitious and often a simpler meal would have been more successful. We enjoyed the upper deck lunches and would have enjoyed the dinners there even more if the starter could have been varied. The shore excursions were excellent, as were the majority of the guides. The evening tour of Bordeaux, the citadel at Blaye and the Gulf of Arcachon were particularly memorable.The scenery is not particularly striking on this cruise ( except at Arcachon) although river banks have their own calming influence as we hazarded guesses at the owners of large and small properties, but all the towns were fascinating. This was particularly important given some wet or grey days.There was a good balance between wine and chateaux. The onboard talks etc were less interesting and together with the briefings took up too much time which might have been spent reading and watching the world go by. it was always possible to skip the evening's entertainment but difficult then to find somewhere to sit and talk in a group without seeming rude. The cabins were too small to entertain friends. on warmer evenings it would obviously been possible to sit on deck. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2015
I was interested in a holiday markets cruise, and as I booked a little later in the year, this was one of the options still available. I definitely didn't feel like I had settled though as the cruise was amazing! The experience on ... Read More
I was interested in a holiday markets cruise, and as I booked a little later in the year, this was one of the options still available. I definitely didn't feel like I had settled though as the cruise was amazing! The experience on board was wonderful. Absolutely everyone I came in contact with from the Ship Director to the Chef to the Tour Guides were fantastic to deal with. You didn't want for anything while on the cruise, and they really went above and beyond to make sure you had a wonderful time. The ship itself was beautiful and pristine the entire time we were on board. Since it was December it was also decorated nicely for the holidays The common areas of the ship were very comfortable, and it was nice to sit on the deck as we were cruising and watch the sites go by. I took part in the majority of the included tours and one of the paid extras (the Cognac tour, highly recommend!). The tour guides were always very friendly and knowledgeable, and I learned quite a bit from them. I think my favorite part of the cruise was the food and beverage. The quality and selection was top notch, and the option to have a full cooked to order meal for breakfast, lunch and dinner was great. It was also nice to have the option to have a lighter meal if you didn't want something heavy though. I was constantly taking pictures of the meals and sending them home to make everyone jealous! My only suggestion would be to have some sort of fitness center on board. While I did get a good amount of exercise from just walking on the tours, with the amount of food I was eating I wanted to get some more vigorous workouts in so I didn't come back 15 lbs heavier. It worked out though b/c I would run in each of the cities we docked in and it was another nice way to soak up the local environment. Highly recommend this cruise, and I will definitely be looking to book another Viking Cruise in the future. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2015
This Chateaux and Wine Country cruise on the Viking Forseti during the week of Christmas was one of the best gifts we've ever received. We traveled with our family group of 8. A "Viking" met us at the Bordeaux airport, ... Read More
This Chateaux and Wine Country cruise on the Viking Forseti during the week of Christmas was one of the best gifts we've ever received. We traveled with our family group of 8. A "Viking" met us at the Bordeaux airport, helped us fill out lost luggage forms, and then whisked us off to the modern, sleek Viking Forseti in one of the fleet of clean & swift buses that are part of the Viking fleet. Our cabin had a French Balcony. The cabin had plenty of room for everything we brought with a large closet. We LOVED the heated tile floors in the surprising large bathroom. ,Although the cabin was smaller than what we were used to on ocean cruises it was more than adequate for our week's stay. The public spaces on the Forseti are lovely. The Aquavit Terrace is a perfect place to have casual meals. Speaking of casual, we loved the casual, cozy feel of this river cruise. No formal clothes required. (and speaking of clothes, our lost luggage was retrieved by the Viking staff and brought to our cabin before dinner that evening!) The first night we went on a Night Walking Tour of Bordeaux. The buildings in Bordeaux are beautifully lit and make it magical. The Opera House, Grand Hotel are perfect for lovely photos...they are a prelude to the spectacular Place de la Bourse (old stock exchange). This stunning square has the world's largest water mirror which reflects the beautiful trio of lit buildings. Our guide was knowledgeable and friendly. She spoke perfect English, making it very easy to understand all of the interesting facts and stories about the area. We enjoyed the walking tours. Seeing the markets, the housing gave us a small taste of each town we visited. Since the Forseti was able to dock close to the town centers we were immediately immersed in the French towns! The Christmas markets with their street food, crafts, and wares were particularly lovely. One highlight of many was optional tour and lunch at Chateaux Siaurac. This stunning 19th century classic style mansion is set among a lovely vineyard and park. We learned about the 'terroir' which makes each wine unique. This cruise is centered around the 'terroir' and wine. We learned more about wine, vineyards, wine tasting and making in 7 days than we had in our lifetime. Given the chance to travel this way was truly an eye opening experience. We'd cruised on over 12 large cruise ships prior to this and found the river cruise to be very different, in a good way. No crowds, no loud music blaring in all of the public places...just a relaxed atmosphere. WE loved this experience and have already booked our next adventure with Viking. They are a first class operation. The staff goes out of its way to meet every need. The food was superb and fresh. We liked that they included any wine or beer at meal time, too. I believe a river cruise is one of the best and most economical ways to see Europe! Viking has won our loyalty with their excellent service, friendliness, and hospitality. Each of our tour guides was exceptional. Viking does an great job providing these excellent ambassadors to guide us. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2015
The cruise lived up to the description in the literature we received. Service on board was excellent as was the food. The excursions were quite good and two of the excursions were excellent. In particular we enjoyed motoring across the ... Read More
The cruise lived up to the description in the literature we received. Service on board was excellent as was the food. The excursions were quite good and two of the excursions were excellent. In particular we enjoyed motoring across the Gulf of Arcachon, seeing and learning about oyster farming and harvesting, sampling local oysters, and finally having an excellent lunch at a local restaurant. The restroom equated bus transportation was always first class. Our guides were friendly, knowledgeable and very informative. The Viking Forseti is a lovely ship and our cabin was well appointed. Our cabin was always clean and we were quite comfortable. The staff were helpful, polite, and able to provide us with whatever we needed, From the moment we arrived at Bordeaux airport until we were guided through the airport for the flight home we were well taken care of. we were sad when we had to leave and vowed to take another Viking cruise next year. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2015
This was our 8th Viking River Cruises river experience. If the "Chateaux, Rivers, and Wine" itinerary had been our first Viking river experience we might have come away unimpressed, disappointed, and perhaps not excited about ... Read More
This was our 8th Viking River Cruises river experience. If the "Chateaux, Rivers, and Wine" itinerary had been our first Viking river experience we might have come away unimpressed, disappointed, and perhaps not excited about taking other river cruises. We were not alone in our assessment of the cruise. So, if you are doing your first river cruise with any river cruise provider don't choose this itinerary. The ship, crew, and food were absolutely outstanding but the itinerary and scenery along the Gironde, Dordogne, and Garrone rivers left a lot to be desired. Our time on the rivers was actually quite minimal and one sailing had to be cancelled due to adverse tides and water levels that kept us from sailing to Cadillac. The rivers were muddy (not very appealing) thanks to the severe tidal shifts that kept the river stirred up and when we were sailing the scenery was not very special. In contrast to the very scenic Douro, Rhine, Main, Danube, Seine, Elbe, Yangtze, and Sonne these French rivers were pretty blah. Bordeaux is a beautiful old city enjoying a period of renovation and development. We thoroughly enjoyed our time in the city. The walk along the river is wonderful and its fun to see so many people enjoying themselves biking, skating, or strolling along the wide concrete path. Many prefer Bordeaux to Paris and it's easy to see why. We spent 2 nights in the city before joining the cruise and that gave us time to get to know our way around and see the old buildings, churches, and gardens. Once onboard, we basically stayed in Bordeaux for 3 days before the ship moved and we took some walking and bus tours around the city, drove to Cadillac for a wine tasting and walkabout, and finally departed for Bourg at 5:30pm, on day 3 of the trip. On day 2 we did get a short evening ride on the Garonne but returned to the Bordeaux pier. Day 4 offered a two hour morning cruise to Libourne for some optional excursions for some while most of the people stuck around for a city walk around Libourne in the late morning and a walking tour of Saint Emilion in the afternoon. While in Saint Emilion the ship returned to Bourg. On day 5 we toured the citadel at Blaye and strolled through a market and that was very nice. That night we took an optional horse-drawn carriage ride though Bourg that included wine tasting. On day 6 we sailed for about 4 hours to Pauillac where we took a wine country tour through the Medoc and Margaux before ending up at Chateau Kirwan for a special dinner prepared by the crew. This was a good day marred only by a loud, obnoxious, foul-mouthed, uncouth woman who made a complete fool of herself on the bus ride back to the ship. After a short ride in the early morning hours of day 7 we returned to Bordeaux for optional excursions or more Bordeaux sightseeing. Our chef, Pascal, and our program director, Lorin, and the entire crew did a great job throughout this cruise and with the itinerary being as dull as it was this was important and saved the trip. There are still a few more rivers we would like to see in Europe and some we'd even like to do again so we'll be sticking with Viking River Cruises in the future. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2015
We chose the Bordeaux cruise because most of the other European River Cruises were sold out by the time we decided to go (rather last minute, I'm afraid). We liked the idea of Bordeaux because we enjoy fine wines and we had never ... Read More
We chose the Bordeaux cruise because most of the other European River Cruises were sold out by the time we decided to go (rather last minute, I'm afraid). We liked the idea of Bordeaux because we enjoy fine wines and we had never seen that part of France. We arrived in Bordeaux by high speed train from Paris, after spending 3 nights there on our own. We boarded the Forseti almost immediately, which was fine because this particular itinerary returns to the City of Bordeaux several times during the week. That is because three rivers meet there, and we took trips down each of them on different days. For this reason, we had a chance to explore the City of Bordeaux in mid cruise and again the night before we disembarked. This area is full of chateaux, but not royal castles as in some other parts of Europe. The Chateaux are mainly related to vineyards. There is a lot of World War II history to learn, and some very old and charming villages. We went to one fort that was first used in the Middle Ages and updated several times, through WW II. We found this itinerary very relaxing - we went to a different village or historical site each day, taking shore excursions on foot. The local guides were very knowledgeable and interesting, and we learned a great deal about the history and culture of this lovely area. The only bus rides were short ones to wineries for tours and tastings, and one to a Chateau for dinner. There were some optional bus trips to farther spots, but we didn't take them. Viking has an amazing organizational plan. For instance, we never saw our room maid, yet our room was always cleaned when we returned from breakfast. It was also refreshed every afternoon or evening, yet again, we never saw a maid. The luggage and transfers were effortless on our part. All the daily disembarkations were easy - the staff handed us water bottles as we left, and once, umbrellas. There was never a delay or congestion. After disembarking, we flew from Bordeaux to London for 3 days. Viking arranged our taxi and the luggage transfer, an effortless process for us. We had not signed up for their airport bus, because we had had disembarkation delays from other big cruise ships and I was afraid we would miss our flight. We needn't have worried - there were others on our London flight who had taken the Viking transfer bus instead of a private taxi. The Cruise Director was amazing, both in his charming personality and in his knowledge of all we would be seeing and doing. He gave us daily briefings before dinner, and he was very entertaining. The pianist in the lounge was excellent also. The food was exceptional. The dining and bar staff were perfect - attentive, yet never in one's face at the wrong time. We loved the big tables, because we felt comfortable saying "may we join you?" to different groups each night - so we got to know a lot of very nice people. All meals involve ordering from menus - fine dining on your own schedule. There is a lunch buffet option, which we tried once when we were in a hurry. Excellent soups, salads and sandwiches there. There are coffee and tea stations at several spots on the vessel, and there are usually cookies and other fresh baked goods there also. There were no extra charges for anything, which we liked. Wine was included with meals and with extra events, such as cheese tastings. Fresh water bottles appeared in our cabin daily. As for children, I did not see any young ones on our vessel. There were a few multi-generational groups where the youngest members might have been in late high school or college. We would take another Viking Cruise immediately, if we could! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2015
Previously, we cruised with Viking three times. Each time we enjoyed every facet of the cruise immensely. The Forseti was just what we anticipated it would be: clean, with an excellent staff; very comfortable and beautiful. Because we ... Read More
Previously, we cruised with Viking three times. Each time we enjoyed every facet of the cruise immensely. The Forseti was just what we anticipated it would be: clean, with an excellent staff; very comfortable and beautiful. Because we take river cruises as much to relax as to sightsee, we did not take all of the excursions, but those we did take were spot on. The only problem we had with the food was not eating too much of it. The chef was delightful! The wines were wonderful, as only the south of France can provide. The wines and the truly memorable dinner the ship's waitstaff served us in the Chateau were the highlights of our trip. There were also delightful shipboard extras, champagne and fresh oysters, and a tour with our chef to the Bordeaux were among so many of these. The final touch was provided by Mr. Blondi at the piano! We booked the trip understanding that we would not be cruising extensively. But the evening dinner cruises were delightful. The lovely scenery sliding was a real plus to the delicious cuisine we enjoyed. Perfect way to sightsee. Our fifth VRC cruise is booked! We will be enjoying sailing from Bavaria to Budapest. We lived in W. Germany for seven years and have visited Budapest, so it is evident that we are not traveling just to see the countryside. We are going to RELAX in the VRC manner. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2015
Even though water levels did not allow us to sail to a couple of the ports (some passengers called our attention to the fact of being able to see town of Bordeau with binoculars always in the distance), the captain kept the boat moving ... Read More
Even though water levels did not allow us to sail to a couple of the ports (some passengers called our attention to the fact of being able to see town of Bordeau with binoculars always in the distance), the captain kept the boat moving along to give us a pleasureable "dinner excursion" a couple of evenings. The cruise director was informative, personable and entertaining! Ship just out this year so very clean. Wine service generous: always take advantage of the 2 for 1 drinks at happy hour! The food was just average; we actually enjoyed the alfresco atmosphere and meals at lunch as much as the main restaurant evening meals. Guides and excursions good as expected. using "whisper" devices is always a plus. Viking seems to really be an excellent choice for us to river cruise. This was our 3rd with them and about our 7th river cruise total. Happy Sailing! Also, airport greet and escort back on disembarkation was top-notch;those folks will be waiting , and actively looking for you on arrival. Checked us in at the airport and took us right to the security line. This particular itinerary probably not very exciting for first time river cruising; we chose just for relaxation aspect since have cruised the major European routes previously. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2015
This was an outstanding river cruise that featured all he best in river cruising. relaxing river cruising during the day, very good regional food with a dinner at a French Chateaux, tours of wineries plus various local wines at lunch and ... Read More
This was an outstanding river cruise that featured all he best in river cruising. relaxing river cruising during the day, very good regional food with a dinner at a French Chateaux, tours of wineries plus various local wines at lunch and dinner that changed daily. Bordeaux is a very beautiful city and we spent plenty of time there to enjoy it, we had a evening walking tour, a bus tour, a museum visit, plus a stretch you legs walk on our first day. My wife and I rented city bikes and rode around the city for half the day, this was on her bucket list. We visited Sauternes, Cadillac, Libourne, Saint-Émilion, Blaye, Bourg, and had an excursion to Pauillac, Médoc and Margaux. The dinner and wines and Chateau Kirwan were the highlight of the trip.There was a nice evening horse and buggy ride in Bourg after dinner with a wine tasting in the city square. One afternoon my wife was able to take a painting lesson on the boat and she enjoyed tit very much.. Michael Stamm our manager and Lorin Dragan our program manager did a fantastic job and everything was first class. This was our 5th river cruise and our 4th viking river cruise and this may have been the best one ever. I would highly recommend this river cruise if you enjoy food, cheese and wine. The Bordeaux region is very beautiful and this was a perfect trip. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: April 2015
We had a great time on our Viking Bordeaux cruise. We knew going in that it was mostly a floating hotel but we choose this cruise for the wine and itinerary and we were not disappointed. It cracks me up to hear people complain about this ... Read More
We had a great time on our Viking Bordeaux cruise. We knew going in that it was mostly a floating hotel but we choose this cruise for the wine and itinerary and we were not disappointed. It cracks me up to hear people complain about this cruise when all someone has to do is a little research and reading to see what this cruise is all about. If you want fantastic castles and rivers with sloped vineyards then do the Rhine. About us: We were a group of 6 from the USA. We ranged in age from 53 to 65. 4 of us are red wine lovers and 2 are new to wine. One became a red wine lover on the cruise. What we liked: The food and service were excellent. I thought that there was a good choice every meal. Our attendants, Robert, Peter, Boris, and Marcia were fantastic and should earn far more money that they get. The wine on board was different each day and while not Premier Cru was still good. The meal and wine at Chateau Kirwan was one of the best meals I have ever had. The wine tastings at Chateau de Tertre and Chateau D' Arche were fantastic. Three of the 4 local guides we had were great as were the tours to Cadillac, St Emilion, and Blaye. My excursion to taste Truffles was great. While I can't say that I like truffles, the whole experience was worth the money. The owner of the farm was truly a man who is passionate about what he does. Farrah, the truffle hunting dog was a joy. The beautiful vineyards on our bus trips and excursion were just starting to bloom. I have a new appreciation for Bordeaux wines. Viking transfers and travel arrangements were excellent. Our room, while small, was quiet, clean, and functional. What could be improved: Being that this is a Wine themed Cruise, I would have liked to have gone to a different vineyard everyday for a tasting. I thought the entertainment could be more varied than just a piano player (who was talented) every night. The 1 evening they had something different (French opera singers) was fantastic. Bottom line: We had a blast and will do a Viking cruise again. If you want fantastic scenery, go somewhere else. This cruise was about the Bordeaux experience, wine and food pairing, which Viking achieved. with success. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2014
Simple Luxury Cruising, those three words sums it all up when you take a Viking cruise. As you step into the ship on your first day, the pampering begins. I cruised with them on the Danube and the Bordeaux river, and planning on a ... Read More
Simple Luxury Cruising, those three words sums it all up when you take a Viking cruise. As you step into the ship on your first day, the pampering begins. I cruised with them on the Danube and the Bordeaux river, and planning on a third one this year. I would like to steal a line on one of my fellow cruise guest "I felt a little homesick with Viking, I booked myself another cruise" and I do agree. The staff becomes your family along with your fellow cruise guests. The ship itself is simple in design. I love their Aquavit lounge, which features a glass covered dining/lounging area. The cabins are comfortable, and you are provided with the essentials such as bottled water everyday, L'occitaine toiletries provided, goosedown beddings, and biggest plus of all is you don't need adapters for your electronic devices. You are provided everyday with your days' itinerary. You expect at least one inclusive shore excursion on the first part of the day and given optional tours later in the day. THE FOOD, is excellent all three meals are delectable. Be prepared for the non stop pouring of wine at dinner time. There are no games nor extravagant shows in the ship, however they would have presentations after dinner at the lounge or during the day. This way you get to meet and get acquainted with people in a nice simple and peaceful setting. The crew will be at your service 24 hours a day. The cruise director, hotel manager, housekeeping crew, the kitchen staff etc will provide you with the best service. I could go on and on. But one thing is for sure when you go on a cruise with Viking, you will be a part of their family by the end of your wonderful stay. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: October 2014
This is not a river cruise. The ship is used as your hotel and you are bused practically everything. It is also not a Wine Tour. In 7 days there were 3 wine tastings. The first one at Chateaux Lalond was excellent and the last at Sauterne ... Read More
This is not a river cruise. The ship is used as your hotel and you are bused practically everything. It is also not a Wine Tour. In 7 days there were 3 wine tastings. The first one at Chateaux Lalond was excellent and the last at Sauterne was very well done and educational. The one on board was pathetic. The tours were a mixed bag. The tour director seemed totally disengaged and never joined us on the local tours which varied greatly in quality. Sometimes it was not the guide's fault, there just wasn't that much to see. The free tours on 3 of the days were less than 2 hours long. The Arcachon tour was wonderful, but we paid an extra $2000 for the 4 of us to go. The ship is lovely, immaculate, very nice housekeeping staff and the food is good with free flowing wine at dinner. We paid extra for a balcony and were parked next to another boat at least half the nights, so close that I could touch it. No view at all. We really only cruised on the last day coming back into Bordeaux. That was lovely and reminded me of why I like river cruising. We were so excited about taking a Viking cruise. Had done the Avalon Budapest to Paris one 2 years ago and LOVED IT. Everyone said Viking was so much better, but it was not at all. A major disappointment. Morale: read the itinerary very, very closely. Do not assume the positive.   Read Less

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