Viking Var Review

4.0 / 5.0
218 reviews
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Editor Rating
4.0
Very Good
Overall
Jamey Bergman
Contributor

Named after a Norse goddess, Viking Var offers a celestial breath of fresh air on the rivers of Europe. Launched in 2013, the vessel is shipshape and modern, from its two-story, light-filled lobby to its streamlined staterooms.

Instead of fussy, faux classic decor, Var has a contemporary feel with comfortable furnishings and an updated look. Like its sister ships in the Longships fleet, Viking Var has 95 staterooms, accommodating 190 passengers.

The Longships' design offers more types of staterooms than other cruisers. Var has two Explorer Suites, seven Veranda Suites, 39 Veranda Staterooms, 22 French Balcony Staterooms and 25 Standard Staterooms. All cabins are outside, so you can watch the castles and villages go by from your stateroom as Var floats down the river. The Explorer Suites are among the largest available on European waterways, and the roomy and efficient veranda suites are true two-room suites. All of Var's suites feature two rooms with a veranda off the living room and a French balcony in the bedroom.

For entertainment, there's a lounge and bar, a small library corner, a sun deck with 360-degree views and a walking track. There's no gym or gym equipment onboard, so active passengers need to get their exercise during stops or on the walking track. Unlike many river cruise lines, bicycles are not available onboard, but you can usually rent them in town.

Viking's fares include all onboard meals; beer and wine with lunch and dinner; Wi-Fi; shore excursions in every port; port charges; and government taxes. Excursions usually take the form of combined walking/coach travel and hit some of the areas' high points. In addition, it's often easy to walk into the towns the ship visits. Optional excursions are also available; these sometimes involve lengthy bus rides into big cities, such as Salzburg, Austria, or Munich, Germany, that are off the river.

Meals onboard Var can be taken in the main floor restaurant, which has floor-to-ceiling windows for panoramic views, in the mid-level lounge and bar or the lovely Aquavit Terrace, an all-weather indoor/outdoor cafe at the ship's bow that offers al fresco dining.  Dinner meals in the restaurant usually offer three entree choices, plus appetizer and dessert choices.

The food is very good, but portions are smaller than those onboard oceangoing cruise ships, a boon to passengers who don't want to overeat.  Another plus for them: Food is only available during designated mealtimes -- you won't find endless snacks onboard.

Pros

Comfortable, well-equipped ship with a design that takes advantage of scenery

Cons

Short visits in some ports, no pool or bikes

Bottom Line

Viking is a pro on European rivers and provides a pleasant experience for all passengers.

About

Passengers: 190
Crew: 50
Passenger to Crew: 3.8:1
Launched: 2013
Shore Excursions: 23

Sails To

Sails From

Fellow Passengers

The general age for river cruise passengers is 60 and older, but Var and other Longships, with their contemporary design, were built with an eye toward attracting a slightly younger traveler. Regardless of age, passengers tend to be well-traveled (though many are visiting Europe for the first time).

Viking Var Dress Code

Casual, comfortable attire is encouraged for both ship and shore on Viking Longships. The must-pack item is, without question, a comfortable pair of walking shoes for shore tours. As the ship sails in Europe, with its lovely and historic landscapes, tours frequently involve cobblestones and other uneven surfaces. Both the staff and the daily program provide ample notice when this is the case.

Generally, passengers "dress up" to varying degrees in the evenings, but never to the level of a big-ship formal night. Most don the kind of attire worn at a country club dinner, but others don't bother to change from their sensible shore excursion gear. Save your best outfits (maybe casual dresses for women and collared shirts and blazers for men) for events like the Captain's Welcome and Farewell Dinners.

Find a Viking Var Cruise from $2,199

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More about Viking Var

Where does Viking Var sail from?

Viking Var departs from Passau and Budapest

Where does Viking Var sail to?

How much does it cost to go on Viking Var?

Cruises on Viking Var start from $2,199 per person.
Viking Var Cruiser Reviews

Treated like royalty.

sure we connected with Mario from Viking Var to get on the ship a day late.Read More
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JMZ1973

couple2-5 Cruises

Age 69s

Viking just does it right!!

We recently did our first river cruise (Romantic Danube) on the Viking Var that sailed from Budapest to Regensburg. We also took advantage of the 2 day pre-arrival stay in Budapest.Read More
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Tfdebruin

oneFirst Time Cruiser

Age 60s

Danubiously enriching!

The Viking Var staff were so helpful and professional.Read More
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evivace1

couple2-5 Cruises

Age 70s

The most amazing vacation we have taken in 30 years!

The day we boarded the Viking Var was my husband's birthday. I was lamenting that I had not let Viking know.Read More
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HSBaxter

couple2-5 Cruises

Age 50s

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