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2,313 Budapest to Europe - River Cruise Reviews

Friends had taken the same trip and recommended it to me. We booked one of the cheapest room and it was still very comfortable and quiet. The rooms were small but offered everything we needed. The rooms had several American plugs so ... Read More
Friends had taken the same trip and recommended it to me. We booked one of the cheapest room and it was still very comfortable and quiet. The rooms were small but offered everything we needed. The rooms had several American plugs so converters were not necessary. The wi-fi on the ship was actually very good even when we were moving. The service was exceptional and the cruise director, Marianne, was the best. The meals were delicious and I especially liked that you did not have to dress up for them. It was also nice that you were not assigned a table and could sit wherever you wanted. It was also nice to have a second lighter fare option with each meal. Beer and wine were included with lunch and dinner and that was a very nice perk. We had a piano player on board who provided entertainment during lunch, the cocktail hour, and most evenings after dinner. One night our cruise director sang and provided the entertainment. She really was a delight and very talented. We enjoyed the shore excursions and the guides spoke very good English which made the tours even better. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
Our cruise consisted of 14 nights cruising from Budapest to Amsterdam with three days at either end in Prague and Paris. We chose this cruise because Scenic was recommended to us by quite a few people. The fact that everything is included ... Read More
Our cruise consisted of 14 nights cruising from Budapest to Amsterdam with three days at either end in Prague and Paris. We chose this cruise because Scenic was recommended to us by quite a few people. The fact that everything is included appealed to us. The timing of the cruise enabled us to get business class flights for a much cheaper price, otherwise we may have chosen to cruise in warmer weather. However, the cold weather and quite a few rainy days didn't detract from our experience. We found the ship to be most comfortable with adequate room to relax without being surrounded by people all the time. The cabins were well appointed with quality bedding, toiletries and storage space. The balcony was wonderful to enjoy some time out with a glass of wine. We found all of the staff very helpful and accommodating. Nothing was too much trouble. If anyone found fault with the food provided, they would be hard to please. It was varied, plentiful (maybe too plentiful judging by my shrunken clothing) and of good quality. I took a galley tour towards the end of the cruise and was amazed at what the kitchen staff could accomplish in such a confined area. Day excursions were for the most part well organised and of good quality. My only wish is that maybe some of the walking tours were shorter and had less of the history (which I couldn't retain anyway) and more time to explore areas in our own time. I sometimes felt that we spent too much in some places and not enough in others. I understand though that in 14 days you can really only get a glimpse of so many cities and towns. Overall, I would certainly recommend and travel with Scenic again. Being a luxury cruise I particularly enjoyed the concept of unpacking only once and having your every need taken care of. A wonderful experience! Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
UNIWORLD lacked the skills to resolve problems and lacked concern for safety. Cabin was exceptionally small, inadequate space between the toilet and shower. Lost electric in cabin for 3 days - no air, no recharging electronics, hearing ... Read More
UNIWORLD lacked the skills to resolve problems and lacked concern for safety. Cabin was exceptionally small, inadequate space between the toilet and shower. Lost electric in cabin for 3 days - no air, no recharging electronics, hearing aids etc. due to condensation on the sliding door which caused an electrical short, not once but 3 times! When brought to the attention of the Captain and other Engineers, the Captain said he was not in charge of resolving the issue and lacked concern for our discomfort and the inconveniences we experienced. If the Captain isn't in charge of the safety of his passengers then who is? On the positive side the food and wait staff were exceptional and worked relentlessly to satisfy the guests, common areas were clean, entertainment nothing exceptional. Shore excursions were interesting and at a good pace, guides were very knowledgeable. Upon our return, we contacted customer service at UNIWORLD. They have offered us a "credit" towards a future UNIWORLD cruise to somehow compensate for the issues we faced. We lost the ability to hear people converse, lost the ability to communicate with our family, we lost the ability to recharge various electronics ... we WOULD NOT recommend cruising with UNIWORLD nor do we intend to throw good money towards a company that fails to put the safety of their passengers first! Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
Class AAA from pre departure to return. The planning by Viking and all of the staff was exceptional. Everything was in excess of expectations. If you were to only have a once in a lifetime cruise to take, this would be the one. All ... Read More
Class AAA from pre departure to return. The planning by Viking and all of the staff was exceptional. Everything was in excess of expectations. If you were to only have a once in a lifetime cruise to take, this would be the one. All excursions and events were thoroughly planned to the last detail. Every excursion,lecture, and event went without any issues. All of the staff was extremely nice,courteous, and helpful. No question or request was deemed out of line. All were professional and cheerful from departure to return. It is never easy to please the public, but they managed to make everyone of the passengers feel special.I look forward to planning another river cruise. It will most certainly be with Viking River Cruises. There are not enough words to describe how very satisfied I and my wife were with the whole experience. I can't imagine a more pleasing experience. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
We heard nothing but good concerning Viking, so we decided to book our first cruise with them. We were not disappointed. Prior to the cruise we received our personalized "Cruise Documents" which I thought was a very nice ... Read More
We heard nothing but good concerning Viking, so we decided to book our first cruise with them. We were not disappointed. Prior to the cruise we received our personalized "Cruise Documents" which I thought was a very nice touch. It was a 55 page document that contained a brief synopsis of upcoming cruise, our cabin number, emergency phone numbers, dock location at the port of embarkation, etc.. The crew was absolutely outstanding, the boat was spotless, the food was out of this world and the whole experience couldn't have been better. The wait staff was very pleasant, didn't rush you during the meal and were very attentive. The first night, the boat left the dock to take a short cruise up and down the river in Budapest, so we could view the beautiful lights on the bridges and buildings. Shore excursions departed on time, were coordinated precisely and were very entertaining. All of the tour guides were very knowledgeable and entertaining. The entertainment was very good. Not only did local talent come on board for shows, but the crew put on some very entertaining shows and skits. We are already planning a second trip with Viking. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
After thoroughly enjoying a Viking cruise on the Rhine a couple of years ago, my wife and I decided to cruise the Danube this year. The last half or so of the cruise was impacted by a river blockage resulting from a grounded barge. Low ... Read More
After thoroughly enjoying a Viking cruise on the Rhine a couple of years ago, my wife and I decided to cruise the Danube this year. The last half or so of the cruise was impacted by a river blockage resulting from a grounded barge. Low water level and excessive barge weight apparently played a part in the grounding. As a result, we were bused around the blockage the last 4 days of our trip so we could visit the scheduled towns. We changed to a new vessel the night before disembarking for flights home, resulting in additional packing and unpacking. Total bus and taxi riding time during our 12 days in Europe was almost 30 hours. Our daily schedule evolved into getting up early to eat breakfast so we could get an early start on a bus trip; drive a significant distant to the venue; take a hurried bus tour of the area; eat lunch in a large, crowded, noisy restaurant; take another hurried previously purchased optional excursion in the area; ride the bus for two hours or more (on one case 4+ hours because of construction on the autobahn) back to the ship; almost immediately go to the review session of next day’s schedule so we would know what changes had been made in the schedule; eat a delayed dinner (7:15 p.m. or later) that took 2+ hours to complete due to slow and/or limited staff; almost immediately prepare for bed; and repeat the schedule the next day. My wife and I were bone tired at the end of our ‘vacation’. Viking was not responsible to the river blockage, but how they handled the situation was poor. We had a large room with balcony but could rarely use it due to being gone most of the day (the river cruising part of the trip was not possible the last few days), and because we usually had another Viking ship moored next to us when docked, resulting in our curtains usually being closed while not moving. We were also moored at industrial area docks due to the large number of ships being jammed up by the river blockage, so there was nothing to see in the area even if we had had time to explore the area while docked. Viking had about 11 river vessels in 2011. Since that time they’ve added over 50 vessels to their fleet, with about 35 of those being added in the last 2.5 years. It’s obvious their rapid growth has impacted quality, and they seem to be having trouble adequately staffing the vessels. Venues are very crowded. And ships mooring at popular locations can be three deep. As an example, almost every night our ship was re-positioned at the same mooring to either let another ship in closer to shore or to let one out. We never knew what we would see when we opened our curtains in the morning. This is not a cheap vacation. With Viking's obvious emphasis on growing revenue and earnings, apparently at the expense of customer satisfaction, it’s definitely a case of buyer beware. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
The food, room, tours, personnel, concerts, etc. were wonderful, but the odor outside our cabin on the bottom level of the boat was horrible. I don't know whether it was sewage which had spilled or something else, but it took away ... Read More
The food, room, tours, personnel, concerts, etc. were wonderful, but the odor outside our cabin on the bottom level of the boat was horrible. I don't know whether it was sewage which had spilled or something else, but it took away from an otherwise great trip. The excursions were well planned and interesting, both the complimentary tours and the ones that were at an additional cost. The guides were for the most part well-versed, knowledgeable, interesting, enthusiastic and had a good grasp of the English language. The complimentary wine or beer at lunch and dinner were an added amenity. The opportunity to eat formally at breakfast, lunch and dinner or dining at the buffet was very convenient. I liked the idea that there were no set tables at dinner or lunch, because it gave one the opportunity to mix and mingle and meet more people. The staff could not do enough for you and always with a smile. All in all a wonderful trip but unfortunately affected by the horrible odor in the hallway of the bottom cabins. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
We joined two other couples to celebrate a special birthday on the Romantic Danube Cruise. This is my first Viking Cruise and was so enjoyable that we plan to go to France next October. As a group, we are in our 50's and ... Read More
We joined two other couples to celebrate a special birthday on the Romantic Danube Cruise. This is my first Viking Cruise and was so enjoyable that we plan to go to France next October. As a group, we are in our 50's and 60's. I will say that we were among the youngest on this cruise. I thought at first that it might make a difference with how well other people did on excursions, interactions, etc. It did not. We traveled with a great group on this ship. We met fun, kind and interesting people and had a blast. Most of the staff were wonderful. Remember, this is river cruising. The river was low and the staff and captain did everything they could to help the ship get through all the complicated locks. Compliments to them. Food and wine was great. The free shore excursions are done by knowledgable locals that train and study very hard to give information, history and a flavor of the town they live in. Our room was fine and adequate for us. The bed was a little on the hard side. We choose to go with one of the lower rooms near the water line as it was cheaper and we only went there to sleep as we were busy most of the time. I love traveling with friends and I also think that makes a difference. Cruising is fun in a group! Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
We chose Uni World because we had such a wonderful experience on a previous cruise from Lyon France to Marseilles. Ship was perfect, so clean, so modern, so efficient Food was excellent Service was supreme Tours were right on ... Read More
We chose Uni World because we had such a wonderful experience on a previous cruise from Lyon France to Marseilles. Ship was perfect, so clean, so modern, so efficient Food was excellent Service was supreme Tours were right on Entertainment was entertaining. We will be back on another cruise. All elements of our expectations were met. The booze flowed, the food did not stop, but was elegant in it's presentation. Organization was excellent We really did not have a complaint We traveled just the two of us. Last cruise we were with 5 other couples. We found out that either strategy can work for travelers. Both ways work on Uni World as they cater to your needs We did not spend a penny more than we thought. There was no need to tip, as the service level was not indicative of tipping or not. The captain ran a wonderful cruise. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
This was our second UniWorld river cruise, we took the Windmills and Tulips cruise from Amsterdam to Antwerp (which was also fantastic!) just this last spring. This time we travelled up the beautiful Danube River, from Budapest Hungary, ... Read More
This was our second UniWorld river cruise, we took the Windmills and Tulips cruise from Amsterdam to Antwerp (which was also fantastic!) just this last spring. This time we travelled up the beautiful Danube River, from Budapest Hungary, through Vienna, Austria, and finally to Passau, Germany. We can't say enough about the crew and staff on UniWorld cruises. Professional, friendly, knowledgable, accommodating, energetic, and happy! The food is exceptional, the service is 1st class all the way, and many of the shore excursions are exclusive to Uniworld. There are many choices of excursions, suitable for any age or activity level. Don't forget to enjoy the spa and on-board masseuse. Surely a massage counts as exercise, doesn't it? We never expect to make new friends, but we always manage to on these cruises. It's a great mix of folks...none to young or to old to have a great voyage. We will be returning for more cruises! Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
We choose to cruise the Danube in October as it fit our calendar. We were delighted with the Njord ship. We had a balcony room, that was comfortable and adequate for space for a ship. The bathroom was unique as it had glass that would ... Read More
We choose to cruise the Danube in October as it fit our calendar. We were delighted with the Njord ship. We had a balcony room, that was comfortable and adequate for space for a ship. The bathroom was unique as it had glass that would allow you to see through or turn the knob and it would darken the glass so that it was hidden. Unfortunately we did not use the balcony as much as we wished. The food was very good. We found all the local delicacies very delightful. The American menu could be improved. The local entertainment was fun, as was the extra tour in Vienna to a Mozart concert. The weather and depth of the river played havoc on only one day in Passau. We choose to return to the ship and sail, so we did not endure the weather after a very interesting and informative tour. However, we missed the organ concert. We did not need to change ships as our captain navigated the river at the low spot and sailed through. We were fortunate! Our guide in Regensburg was outstanding. There was a mix up with the time for the guides so we were assigned another group, and we feel we "lucked out". We felt the service on the ship and the local guides was very good. Sonjia, our concierge, gave us great tips on what to see as we toured some of the cities on our own after the group tour. As we were allowed to make our own flight arrangements, we did not experience any difficulties with airlines or arrival or disembarkation. We encountered a very diverse and "fun" group of people on board which made the trip even more delightful. We look forward to another Viking River Cruise! Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
This was our 2nd Viking cruise, the other being in 2014 in Russia for 14 days was wonderful and exciting, now comes my coparison. This cruise "The Grand European Tour" from Budapest to Amsterdam on the Embla was average at best. ... Read More
This was our 2nd Viking cruise, the other being in 2014 in Russia for 14 days was wonderful and exciting, now comes my coparison. This cruise "The Grand European Tour" from Budapest to Amsterdam on the Embla was average at best. We did the pre and post cruise extensions. Lack of local entertainment on board, 2 of which were musical and very nice and a local glass blower who was more about selling his goods. Each night at 6:45 there was a briefing for the next days included and optional excursions where the program director was in the zone for selling the optional tours. The first night she went on and on about the upcoming optional tours like an encyclopedia salesman. The dining staff was short staffed at best, very rushed, twice we had to ask where our food was. a few nights we were finishing dinner and wanted another glass of wine and just chat with friends and low and behold the wine is gone and they are setting up for breakfast with clanging dishes, just horrible service. then I was not feeling well with a chest cold nad canceled one of our optional tours for the next day which I explained to the concierge at the front desk and he knew I was sick. He had told me he couldn't do anything because we booked online and when we got home just call Viking for a refund and they would confirm I was sick. Not so! Called viking and was told that the policy is no refunds under any circumstances. all in all it was an expensive lesson I will never repeat and our plan after our Viking river cruise was a Viking cruise every other year. Not happening now. They really nickle and dime you. Theyt have grown to fast over the last couple of years in my opinion. Sorry Viking, you reap what you sow. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
We thought this cruise would offer the "best bang for the buck" and were not disappointed. The only disappointment was the optional tour to the horse farm in Hungry, which did not meet our expectations. I had been on a brief ... Read More
We thought this cruise would offer the "best bang for the buck" and were not disappointed. The only disappointment was the optional tour to the horse farm in Hungry, which did not meet our expectations. I had been on a brief ocean cruise and did not care for it, while I enjoyed every minute on the river boat. We didn't know we were moving unless we looked out the window. The staff was as wonderful as everything else. We are sold on river cruises as well as Viking and plan to travel the rivers of the world with them again. Having them book the flights so they picked us up and the airport and dropped us off at the gate with assistance at the airport were extras that we really appreciated. We were disappointed that we didn't get to see or spend any time in Amsterdam at the end of the tour. We wish that we would have had time to do the extension on that end. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
My husband and I are Americans and the fact the majority of passengers were not from the USA intrigued us. There were approximately 165 passengers on our cruise and there were 15 Americans. We were pampered from the moment we arrived on ... Read More
My husband and I are Americans and the fact the majority of passengers were not from the USA intrigued us. There were approximately 165 passengers on our cruise and there were 15 Americans. We were pampered from the moment we arrived on the ship. The food was delicious and varied. Breakfast and lunch were buffet and you could also have a light lunch in the lounge area if you preferred. For dinner you could eat at a table for 2 or join a group. We thought we would eat by ourselves most of the time but ended up eating with new friends almost every day. The excursions were well organized and the tour guides were young and very informative with a good sense of humor. Our cabin was large with a sofa and 2 chairs and a floor to ceiling window for good light. There also was balcony with 2 chairs. Both windows could be opened if you wanted fresh air. The bathroom was well organized with plenty of storage space for your toiletries. However, the staff made the cruise for us. Everyone was so friendly and efficient. They seemed to be enjoying themselves as well. Nothing was too much trouble for any of the wait staff. We found the passengers to be very friendly and outgoing. I could not recommend this cruise line more highly. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
This was our 3rd Avalon Waterways cruise in Europe. Of all the regular river cruisers we spoke with, they universally said that the Amsterdam to Budapest cruise was their favorite, We now know why. This cruise is absolutely beautiful, ... Read More
This was our 3rd Avalon Waterways cruise in Europe. Of all the regular river cruisers we spoke with, they universally said that the Amsterdam to Budapest cruise was their favorite, We now know why. This cruise is absolutely beautiful, and gives you a taste of so many different destinations, cultures, and incredible sites. We actually sailed from Budapest to Amsterdam,. Either way, it is a beautiful cruise. We found all of the Avalon ships to be spotless, albeit without a lot of fru fru decorative frills in the lobby and dining room. The food was what you would expect on any cruise line, really good but not great. What set this cruise apart was the way the ship Captain, The Cruise Director, and especially Avalon Waterways handled some unexpected navigational challenges along the way. On every river we sailed, there were unexpected river depth challenges that required a lot of thought and planning on all of the crews part to get us where we were going. Due to unexpected river traffic created by a grounded river freighter on the Danube, we were late arriving on some of our scheduled ports of call. Avalon handled these challenges flawlessly. We could not be more pleased with our Avalon Waterways experiences at every level and will certainly sail with them again. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
We would like to tell anyone wishing to take a Danube river cruise that you will not be disappointed if you book a 7 day cruise on the Scenic Amber. This is as good as it gets. The Amber is beautiful & new,the Deluxe Balcony Suite ... Read More
We would like to tell anyone wishing to take a Danube river cruise that you will not be disappointed if you book a 7 day cruise on the Scenic Amber. This is as good as it gets. The Amber is beautiful & new,the Deluxe Balcony Suite is superbly designed & comfortable, the dining was 5 star,the staff were amazing,the service was excellent, the excursions were interesting, the tour guides were knowledgable. The entire voyage was superbly organized and Scenic delivered on all of their promises. You won't find this in their literature but Scenic has a small fleet of luxury tour buses that follow the cruise ship up & down the Danube river.The bus drivers are highly skilled & knowledgeable about the countries/cities/towns they drive in. The ship's Captain & his crew make sailing on the Danube river look easy even though it is not.We highly recommend the Scenic Amber & the Scenic brand. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
Loved everything about it. Great cabin, excellent services. Clean, food outstanding. Love how they serve regional dishes at different destinations. This time, we didn't do the formal dinners/dining rooms. We did the buffet so ... Read More
Loved everything about it. Great cabin, excellent services. Clean, food outstanding. Love how they serve regional dishes at different destinations. This time, we didn't do the formal dinners/dining rooms. We did the buffet so we could get a taste of everything! LOVE the smaller, more intimate ships. Don't want those "floating cities." Once you go with Viking cruises, River or Ocean, you'll be spoiled and won't want any other line. Also, at least one excursion in each port paid, too! Luxurious linens and towels! Heated bathroom floors! I've been on over 20 cruises. All different lines and itinerary. Nothing else compares! We got our air/transfers through Viking and it couldn't be anymore seamless transitions. And, the busses were so new they were removing plastic covers from the seats! The busses have toilets. What more could you ask for? Again, you cannot possibly go wrong with Viking. Can you tell, VIKING CRUISES are the BEST. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
I choose this cruise because it was recommended by friends and I had never been to that part of Europe before. The guided tours were especially well done - informative and always with a competent guide who was from the area being visited. ... Read More
I choose this cruise because it was recommended by friends and I had never been to that part of Europe before. The guided tours were especially well done - informative and always with a competent guide who was from the area being visited. The service aboard the ship was outstanding - everyone and I mean everyone who works on the ship made you feel welcomed and cared for. It was a wonderful experience. The food was excellent - the struggle was not to over eat. My only concern about this trip was that we had to change ships (because of low water levels in the Danube) - for some reason we didn't bond the same way with the staff on our new ship, we were just getting comfortable with the first staff and boom, we had to move. Other people on the ship had the same experience. Mind you, this was a small adjustment to make and it was important that our programs director and concierge moved with us. I definitely want to take more cruises with Viking. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
My wife has always wanted to visit Austria. So we talked and decided that the best way to get a feel for Austrian and Eastern European culture and scenery was to take a river cruise, which we have never done before. We were joined by my ... Read More
My wife has always wanted to visit Austria. So we talked and decided that the best way to get a feel for Austrian and Eastern European culture and scenery was to take a river cruise, which we have never done before. We were joined by my wife's sisters and their husbands and another couple who we love to travel with who are very good friends. Our cabin was very comfortable and we had plenty of room to store all our stuff for an 8 day cruise. although we did not spend much time there it was spacious and we were able to see our sailing adventure as we traveled out our sliding glass door. We enjoyed many daily off boat excursions that were guided by local people who were very informative and friendly. We also had plenty of time on shore to explore on our own after getting our barrings from the walking tours. The cities and scenery on the Blue Danube were beautiful. We really got a flavor of the true culture of every port we visited. The service was awesome. The crew and the staff were so friendly and informative. The meals were five star. The local wine, beer and beverages were a taste from each region we visited. we were also entertained by local actors and musicians who gave us a taste of the regional dance, song and theatrical theme. The ports we visited were so beautiful. The churches, the hills, the homes and every scene we saw was better than the last. The history was especially exciting for me as we traveled through time back to many many years before the US was even a country to current Eastern European culture. I especially liked Budapest at night. The Abbey at Melk. And Chesky Romanov in the Check Republic which was a shirt bus ride from our boat. It was ancient and beautiful. We are looking forward to traveling with Viking again soon. Our next adventure may be a river cruise on the Rhine River. Try it you'll like it. And you will be Groovin down a river with a smile on your face. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
We chose Uniworld because we had sailed with them last year and so enjoyed the whole experience. The staff are amazing, friendly, helpful, even though English is not their language. The food was excellent and abundant. The dining room ... Read More
We chose Uniworld because we had sailed with them last year and so enjoyed the whole experience. The staff are amazing, friendly, helpful, even though English is not their language. The food was excellent and abundant. The dining room staff were attentive and friendly. The excursions are amazing. We visited sites, towns and places we had no idea existed showing the very long and varied past of the Balkans. We saw advanced civilizations that predated Stonehenge by thousands of years. The guides were extraordinarily knowledgeable, well spoken in excellent English and many times down right funny in explaining their proud history. We visited a fisherman's home and saw that all fisherman are the same the world over. And, no extra cost! We are going to do it again. As a master mariner and oceanographer, I wouldn't go with anyone else if there is a choice. We are planning on returning next year (2017). Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
This was our second Viking river cruise (1st was four years ago in China) and overall we enjoyed the trip, The ship left Budapest and sailed up the Danube river making stops in Austria and Germany. The Bestla was a last minute replacement ... Read More
This was our second Viking river cruise (1st was four years ago in China) and overall we enjoyed the trip, The ship left Budapest and sailed up the Danube river making stops in Austria and Germany. The Bestla was a last minute replacement as our former ship was involved in an accident a few weeks prior that left it inoperable. First impressions are key and there were three viking ships at the dock - we were not sure which was our ship and I asked a few porters for the Bestla - I mis-pronounced the name and was curtly corrected by a porter about the correct pronouciation and was informed we should know better where we are going - interesting way to board a ship. The room was clean, nicely styled with an outdoor balcony but was somewhat smaller than our China cruise. The meals were good and enjoyable (not great) - they were tasty and flavorable but nothing really stood out as being unique or memorable. Unlike our China ship, it seemed to take the crew a few days to get organized and work as a team - service during meals and the bar were a bit slow in the first few days but seemed to improve as the days went on. One notable difference from China is that the crew did not take the time to learn the names of the passengers (by the end of day one in China, our bartenders knew our names and had drinks pre-made as we entered the bar and dining area). The included excursions were okay but one of my ongoing chief complaints for river cruises in general is that you have to pay the extra dollars for the better excursions (of which we signed up for several - Mozart string quarter, palace in Vienna, Munich). One notable experience that really got my goat was when we went to a beautiful Monastary and had to pay a small additional fee (that we were unaware of) to attend a dumpling demonstration - those that did not sign up (including us) had to wait in the coffee shop until the demonstration was completed - have to say when you pay over $10,000 to go on this trip I am disappointed that Viking could not include this as part of the free excursion. We signed up for the silver beverage package that allowed for unlimited beverages and wine - when we ordered wine for dinner each night, we were told they ran out of several types that we enjoyed but mysteriously they were served in the bar later that evening. Also I enjoy single malt scotch and when they ran out of one particular bottle on day three of the cruise, I was told they could only serve one bottle per cruise - again we are paying $10,000 for this trip so please don't nickel and dime me with the silly rules. The ship is very small and we met a lot of kind, funny, and engaging folks from all over the world and made new friends for life. Overall we had a nice time but compared to our China cruise (service, crew team work, meals, excursions, bar service) this was not the five star service we have come to expect from Viking. Will probably look into other river cruises for some diversity next year. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
We have done several ocean cruises ( Med. Canaries ,Baltic) and have always fancied doing the Danube so this year thought why not. I'm sorry to say we were pretty disappointed in the whole experience.The first three days were good ... Read More
We have done several ocean cruises ( Med. Canaries ,Baltic) and have always fancied doing the Danube so this year thought why not. I'm sorry to say we were pretty disappointed in the whole experience.The first three days were good and we were really quite enjoying it but from there on it was really not what we had expected. The next four were really spent sailing with a short time in the various towns probably three to six hours It was a case of doing the walk and get at best an hour or so free time. The rest of the time was spent sailing ( the last two days going through locks or waiting to go through locks.) with a short time ashore. The boat itself is really nice but can be a bit cramped in the indoor areas. The sun terrace was always being closed of towards the end of the week in fact for the last the day or so we were unable to access it. As a smoker that meant we had a small are on deck three.at the doors leading to sun deck. I know that there were safety reason for this as we were going under some pretty low bridges but our Captain seemed to be very quick to close the deck and slow to open it There were some things liked about the cruise but more that I didn't but I would be here all day listing them. .I spoke to our cruise director a couple of days before the end of the cruise and basically we were too young ( early 60s withe usual age related problems) and active and we like a smoke.. Probably says it all. As for food breakfast was very good rest of food was well presented but pretty bland and under seasoned.Chef writes a lovely menu but it doesn't come through in practice. Am i glad we've done it? Yes. Would we do it again? Maybe in about 20 years or so. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
Just returned from a Viking river Cruise from Budapest to Amsterdam. This was first river cruise and we must say that we were glad that we booked with Viking. We have done all kinds of big ship cruising which we have thoroughly enjoyed ... Read More
Just returned from a Viking river Cruise from Budapest to Amsterdam. This was first river cruise and we must say that we were glad that we booked with Viking. We have done all kinds of big ship cruising which we have thoroughly enjoyed but we have now found a new experience that is even better. Although the price of a river cruise surpasses the cost of liner cruising it is a totally different experience and worth the difference in price. The biggest difference is that you are experiencing amazing scenery each and every day. There are no "sea days" where you only see water everywhere you look. Even though there are a couple of days(out of 15) where you don't dock, you are always seeing vistas of the lands that you are passing through. To begin with, the Viking crew was amazing. We sailed on the Skadi and every crew member was pleasant and helpful. Each and every one of them was pleasant and helpful and it made you feel totally comfortable and safe. The fact that you are mingling with only appprox 190 guests, makes the experience much more personal. After a few days, you almost know everyone on the ship and interact with them all on a personnel and collegial basis. The only regret that we had was that we did this trip a bit late in the season. We sailed on Oct 1st and as an afterthought it probably would have been better around the first part of September as the weather was a little cool and wet. However, we got through all that and still managed to enjoy ourselves. As for the cruise itself, the one nice thing is that Viking provides a tour at each stop which is included in your fees. There are also optional tours that are offered at an extra cost. The Viking provided tours had excellent guides that were very knowledgeable of the cities that we visited. The food that was presented was both plentiful and delicious and again, the wait staff in the dining room were exceptional. The ship itself was absolutely immaculate. The staff were continuously cleaning every aspect of the ship, from the hall ways, the open areas, to the top open deck area. We have never seen such attention to cleanliness throughout the ship. One of the things that impressed us was that every Viking staff member went out of their way to make the cruise enjoyable. One day stood out in our minds as to how they take care of their passengers. We were on a tour of a city and there was going to be a delay when the ship was available to pick us up(due to backups in the lock system) for about an hour. So, the cruise director arranged for us all 180 of us to go to a pub while we waited. As we arrived, several members of the crew were there to greet us and then we were provided free refreshments while we waited to re-board. A nice touch! We also tacked on a couple of days in Amsterdam after our cruise and again we experienced the attention that Viking pays to its passengers. To begin with, your bags are brought from your room directly to the transportation that will take you to your post stay hotel. (No looking and claiming your bags in a huge warehouse like a cruise ship). Once we arrived at the hotel, there was a Viking rep to greet us and to answer any questions that we had. They were there every day of our post cruise stay to provide assistance. Then of the final morning, they were then again present to make sure that everyone got off to the airport. Once we arrived at the airport, there was another Viking rep to greet us and make sure that we got to the proper check-in location for our flight home. To say the least, the service was amazing. Of course, there are pros and cons to each style of cruising. The setbacks to this type of ship is that there are no amenities to enjoy as on the bigger ships such as fitness rooms, saunas, spas, pools. However, these are intended to be more site seeing experiences. Another nice thing about these ships is that you don't have to go through the screening that you see on the big ships. You don't have to have your bags scanned and you are allowed to bring whatever you want to enjoy on your cruise. In fact, you are allowed to bring local wines on the ship and they will serve them to you without a corkage fee. In summary, we thoroughly enjoyed our cruise and are planning our next one. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
To be honest, my bad, I did not do my research. I was told this was a 5 star experience and book based on my thoughts of what 5 star meant. Therefore, This is a difficult review to write. The staff was excellent, helpful, friendly, ... Read More
To be honest, my bad, I did not do my research. I was told this was a 5 star experience and book based on my thoughts of what 5 star meant. Therefore, This is a difficult review to write. The staff was excellent, helpful, friendly, experienced, a pleasure to be around. If I was 80, it would have been a good trip. But I'm 60, also known as the new 40. Tauck does not cater to 40 year olds. Tauck caters to the geriatric group that likes all-inclusive programs. It was extremely expensive and disappointing. Not at all good for young families. The workout room is in the bottom of the boat, what little equipment there is it's failing, it is hot, no view, lots of tv's but no individual sound system, very noisy, tiny. The Massage therapy room is next to the workout room. Very little room for the therapist to work, noisy due to proximity of workout room, being on the bottom of the boat, and toilets flushing. The food is adequate, but I would not put it high on my list of places to eat. We ate ashore as often as possible. So much for that all-inclusive price! I will say the Indonesian chef cooking makes great Indonesian food!! Our cabin is excellent and the service we have gotten has been fabulous!! But again, it better be! We paid an exorbitant price for it! Seriously, look on Tauck tours and see what category 7 cost! There are 10 bikes available, 3 broke making it 7, for 118 people. Talk about first come first serve! And that is given you get a chance to ride! I think we will get 5 days out of 15. On the day we were stuck on the boat for over 24 hrs (not good for active baby boomers) we were told no biking. There would be no place to stop. Although the boat captain was able to pick up and drop off entertainment during the day along the way. FYI, our group on bikes was faster then the boat on water. We would most certainly have beat the boat to the meeting location. All-inclusive! I know what that means now! You can have all the bad wine you want!! Tauck saves the good stuff for the cruises that are not all inclusive! We are foodies and wine goes with that. I would gladly pay a premium additional for a good glass of wine. But again, if you knew the price I paid, you would have expected it to include fine wines. Entertainment has been a 50/50 proposition. Some was really bad and some was...ok. Some has been very informative. I traveled with my husband and a large group from Budapest to Amsterdam in October. (Currently on cruise) October north is a bad idea in itself. Wet cold rainy and a bit dreary. And the price was the same for this week as it was for two weeks ago going south. My bad. So, you know what twenty 60 yearolds due when locked up on a cruise on a rainy day? Drink. And then cause problems and by now day 11 would all jump ship if we could!! I do not blame the staff or crew for this disappointing cruise. They have been excellent! They are only working within the confines of Tauck policy and procedures. I did not do my research. I hate all-inclusive destination resorts, not sure why I thought this would be better/different! Bottom line, Tauck needs to hear this... They are not catering to a generation with money that has another good 10-20 years of active traveling! The idea of not having to pack everyday to move on to next town is attractive, but I will be looking to other cruise and travel companies for my next vacation. It won't be Tauck. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016

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