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167 Viking River Lyon Cruise Reviews

The dates above apply only to the "cruise" portion of our vacation. Viking also arranged our air transport from Houston, TX on 20 May to Paris, our stay in Paris (2 days), and a bus tour of southern France through Burgundy to ... Read More
The dates above apply only to the "cruise" portion of our vacation. Viking also arranged our air transport from Houston, TX on 20 May to Paris, our stay in Paris (2 days), and a bus tour of southern France through Burgundy to Lyon (2 days). Each element of the vacation was excellent and, though we met with some rain at the beginning of the trip, Viking (from drivers, to guides, to choice of locations visited, to hotels, to our fellow passengers) provided an excellent experience for us. Our ship, the Delling, was magnificent. The staterooms were beautifully designed and well-appointed, light and airy, surprisingly roomy, spotlessly clean, and maintained by a well-trained, polite and cheerful staff, eager-to-please and to accommodate our needs. The Rhone portion of the trip was amazing. We began the cruise portion of our trip late in the day, while passengers were asleep. The movement of the vessel was so smooth and quiet that we could only tell that we were moving the next morning, when we looked out to see southern France gliding by our stateroom window. Hardly any vibration at all from the engines. Our guides on the various tours were knowledgable about their subjects (wines, produce, architecture, history and cultural significance of the areas visited). The tours themselves were well-organized and interesting. There was adequate time for photography en-route, meal stops, and the onshore sites chosen were perfect. Our guides handled questions superbly. Our tour directors, onshore and on the Delling, were top-notch. The electronic devices permitting us to hear the tour guides while ashore worked well. While onboard, we heard talks on various subjects of interest (silkscreening, how the galley was run, etc.). We were fortunate to have been able to attach ourselves to a congenial group of eight passengers from all around the United States, who enjoyed each other's company. And so we often dined together in the evenings, toured together, and had a grand time. We stay in contact with some of them even today. The cruise attracted some interesting, well-educated people who work, or worked, in a variety of fields, and who became engrossed in the history and culture of southern France. Our dinner conversations included discussions of what we had seen on a given day, and each of us was able to bring additional perspective on what we viewed that day to the dining table. Our fellow passengers were certainly a highlight of our Viking experience. All meals on the Delling were perfect. For breakfast, we generally chose the lighter fare in the forward restaurant (croissants, juice, fruit and coffee) on most days. The food was fresh and the tables and serving area were kept spotless by an able and accommodating staff. This, and buffet-style lunches dining when we were not on an onshore tour and lunching ashore, provided us with the opportunity to meet and visit with other passengers. Luncheon fare, whether hot or cold, had considerable range of ingredients, and the variety of fresh foods was excellent. All dishes were well prepared, and beautifully displayed. The staff encouraged us to sample from a range of offerings. Dinners were a special treat. Choices were surprisingly broad and made of fresh materials. Our chef was amazing. One of our number at dinner had a condition that prevented her from consuming a particular (and common) type of food, and so our chef managed to accommodate her dietary needs. If another member of our dinner group needed a change to some element of his meal, the waiters carried the message to the chef and he altered the meal for that person. The wine list featured local wines as well as the usual ones, and was quite broad. The food quality was equivalent to that in a four star restaurant, in my opinion. Service was excellent. I don't think that even on a single occasion, a "wrong" meal turned up in place of what was ordered, and I'll note that requests for individual modification of the menu in some manner were fairly common in our group of diners. Desserts were a special part of the meal. Scrumptious in taste and beautiful in presentation. How chef managed that in his modest-sized kitchen was amazing. At all times, we felt completely secure on the cruise. The staff carefully and conscientiously manned the gangplank at both ends of shore excursions, screening arrivals, and they knew their passengers well. And tour bus pickup points were kept close to the docked vessel and to the sights visited. This was a particularly important consideration for us this turbulent year. We followed the Viking cruise with an extended stay in Avignon, our point of disembarkation, and to which city we had flown our son and his family to continue our exploration of southern France. This, and rental of a small villa on the coast in Frejus was, in some ways, a repeat of a similar trip we took when he was very young, four decades ago. I will say that this portion of our trip, though well- and carefully-planned, was much more hectic for us without the assistance of the staff and facilities aboard the Delling. And we were constantly trying to find "parking" for our vehicle at our lunch, dinner, and cultural stops during that ten day period. What a distraction that was!!! All-in-all Viking provided a more luxurious and restful vacation for us than we had anticipated. Thank you for a great experience and the opportunity to meet your group of loyal and efficient employees, and such interesting fellow passengers. Read Less
Sail Date May 2016
I chose Viking with a destination in Avignon, as well as a 3 day pre-trip to Paris. I have significant health issues and I wanted a cruise line with a good reputation that would take care of everything, and so I would not have to be ... Read More
I chose Viking with a destination in Avignon, as well as a 3 day pre-trip to Paris. I have significant health issues and I wanted a cruise line with a good reputation that would take care of everything, and so I would not have to be packing up and traveling from town to town. I wanted a small ship with quiet amenities, and preferably no children to nearly eliminate noise. Most of our passengers were in their 70s, I would say. I am 60 so thereby a youth in comparison, but it was fine. Many of them were in much better shape than me! They were very friendly. My birthday had occurred at the start of the trip, so the wait staff brought me a very unusual cake with a large sprinkler -- and they all knew my name. Every person at my table got a piece of cake and a glass of champagne, even though my husband and I didn't know them. It was a lot of fun. The cruise was wonderfully done. Every member of the crew, including the captain, would help you find whatever you needed. I asked our very young housekeeper to find me some very soft towels, and she did (notice Viking: buy some new un-scratchy towels)! She also found us a top sheet for our bed (these seem to be not the style in France). Our cabin was very pleasant; however, we had a king-size bed and I think it took up too much of the room! I would have been happier with a Queen size and have a little more space in the room! The bed was very comfortable. But as I say, ALL the staff was wonderful. We had a verandah but sadly we never used it because the weather was often chilly and somewhat rainy. The food was excellent; you could choose how much or little you wanted of everything. The excursions and tour guides were mostly excellent, but I was not well enough to go on all of them. In fact, I think there were too many, making it difficult to just see a town on one's own, shop, etc. Of course you could skip an excursion to do that if you wanted. OK, cons:They now charge for some excursions, which from what I was told was not the case in the past. They seem to go quickly from from port to port, which I understand in order for people to see as much as they can, but I would have spent say two days in four ports rather than a day in seven ports. The ads you see on PBS with lovely old houses on either side was not the case on this tour (Lyon to Avignon). There was only scrub brush, some small trees and a nuclear power plant on the sides of the Rhone River. This was a big disappointment. I had been told by someone on the Danube tour that there had been classical and baroque music in the evening. We did not have that -- only "easy-listening" type music. The 3-day pre tour they offer is actually 3 nights. It includes the day you land on the plane, which was 4 PM for us, and of course we were all exhausted. The Air France plane we took, arranged by Viking, was almost unbearably cramped. I could not reach my bag on the floor from my seat. My knees touched the back of the seat in front of me and I am 5'5". The toilets smelled awful later in the trip, so I assume they had not been re-filled or treated in between flights. I was told Delta was the same. I brought my own healthy snacks, fortunately. Apparently this is air flight in the new age, but it was horrendous. I think I might go again because the travel itself on the ship was so pleasant, but I might in some other case arrange for spending more time in each place by using a different method of transportation. It was pretty expensive even with discounts, so I would have to take that into account -- and find a plane that will "let" you pay for more leg room -- only $800 round-trip for two people. Read Less
Sail Date May 2016
We chose Lyon and Provence for food and wine experiences and were not disappointed. The food and wine on the Delling were both quite nice, and we dined at a brasserie in Lyon run by Paul Bocuse, a three-star Michelin chef. I have to ... Read More
We chose Lyon and Provence for food and wine experiences and were not disappointed. The food and wine on the Delling were both quite nice, and we dined at a brasserie in Lyon run by Paul Bocuse, a three-star Michelin chef. I have to admit that we were somewhat spoiled by our prior Viking cruise on the Forsetti since we had a sommelier, Frankie to help us with our local purchases. We were on our own this time, although the front desk and concierge were somewhat helpful in finding decent wine shops. We had some really good shore excursions, but the night tour in Vivier was not so nice since we could not see much and photography was pretty much a waste of time. The ship was essentially identical on each of the two cruises, which gave us a sense of comfort since we knew where everything was. As usual, the crew was most excellent and helpful. We really enjoyed the service of Gabor in the dining room. We travelled with another couple with no children. The cruise director, Oliver, who doubled as "Pierre" was the best we have ever had! Read Less
Sail Date May 2016
This was our second Viking River cruise and we chose France because we wanted to see more of France. We did the pre-cruise in Paris for 3 nights and the post cruise in Nice for 3 nights. The ports were wonderful. The pace was perfect. ... Read More
This was our second Viking River cruise and we chose France because we wanted to see more of France. We did the pre-cruise in Paris for 3 nights and the post cruise in Nice for 3 nights. The ports were wonderful. The pace was perfect. We especially like the fact that the shore excursions are a half day and are included in the cruise cost. Also drinks are included. There was plenty of time to relax in the afternoon or go on optional tours if we were interested. Oftentimes, we preferred to relax on the boat and read and rest so we didn't feel like we needed another vacation when we arrived home! The service was the best and the staff made the cruise so memorable. We're thinking about doing our next cruise on a Viking Ocean cruise to the Baltic. Otherwise, we'll look forward to another Viking Cruise - maybe Portugal and Italy. Read Less
Sail Date May 2016
A friend who had traveled with Viking was going and recommended it. I was very impressed with both my onboard experience as well as the planned excursions. Onboard life was very nice. The room was comfortable, the food excellent, and ... Read More
A friend who had traveled with Viking was going and recommended it. I was very impressed with both my onboard experience as well as the planned excursions. Onboard life was very nice. The room was comfortable, the food excellent, and staff commendable. I really enjoyed the excursions and appreciated the knowledgeable tour guides in each port. They all provided excellent historical and local information for each place visited. I also appreciated the relaxed ambiance of onboard life. Having traveled on a larger cruise line, I especially enjoyed the smaller more intimate setting of the Viking river cruise. Excursions I especially enjoyed were to Perouges, a middle town, a trip to a winery near Lyon, and Avignon. I was not disappointed with any of the excursions, and I appreciated that each day passengers had trips that were included in the cruise. Both embarkation and disembarkation were well managed. I was somewhat unhappy with a disembarkation time early in the morning, night really. However, the staff made the process as painless as possible and even had someone at the airport to assist us. All in all, I was definitely impressed enough with my trip that I look forward to future Viking cruises. Read Less
Sail Date May 2016
Very simply, a wonderful experience. From the first step onto the ship it was delightful. The crew was friendly, attentive and knowledgeable throughout the cruise. From the minute we boarded the Buri it was apparent that the ... Read More
Very simply, a wonderful experience. From the first step onto the ship it was delightful. The crew was friendly, attentive and knowledgeable throughout the cruise. From the minute we boarded the Buri it was apparent that the organization was superb. The officers at boarding were professional yet friendly in their welcomes. When we met our cabin maid she immediately made us feel at home. The cabin had every amenity available, our wifi worked well, the cabin was well laid out and very clean. Our maid took care of us magnificently, our room was always painstakingly restocked and cleaned. Having worked for years in the management of hotels and restaurants I was impressed by the professionalism of the service staff and excellent food produced by the kitchen. The food was elegantly presented and served - all of our meals were wonderful experiences. The on board meals were easily the equal or better than those onshore, and our tour was down the Rhone River! The daily tours were educational and lots of fun, our tour director Suzie was exceptional. She explained every day's itinerary and organized them smoothly and effortlessly. I wouldn't hesitate to recommend Viking to anyone. Read Less
Sail Date May 2016
Others we traveled with had been to other areas of France. This was a wonderful experience and the staff could not have been more service-oriented or helpful. The food was just awesome, also! We enjoyed all our excursions and the ... Read More
Others we traveled with had been to other areas of France. This was a wonderful experience and the staff could not have been more service-oriented or helpful. The food was just awesome, also! We enjoyed all our excursions and the entertainment on board. We liked the smaller size of the boat, and the ease of getting around. Local guides were well informed on the tours and made sure we stayed together. We all liked the fact that there was free time most afternoons to relax, read, and visit with others. Suzanne was our cruise Director and she did a marvelous job of keeping us informed of all the activities on board, as well as, previewing the sites we would see the following day. Getting on and off the boat was quite easy and we loved getting a little refreshment on our return. Nice touch! This was our first Viking Cruise and we would do another without hesitation. In fact, my husband said this when we disembarked. We are not sure yet where our next cruise will take us, but Viking would be our first choice. Read Less
Sail Date May 2016
Viking River Cruise, Viking Heimdal, Lyon to Avignon, May 4-11, 2016 Viking River Cruises presents an attractive, even seductive, face. From the alluring advertising to the handsome “long boats” decked out in understated ... Read More
Viking River Cruise, Viking Heimdal, Lyon to Avignon, May 4-11, 2016 Viking River Cruises presents an attractive, even seductive, face. From the alluring advertising to the handsome “long boats” decked out in understated Scandinavian hues to the exception people who staff their ships to the fine cuisine and excellent local guides who make each destination come alive, Viking does it right. It is only when something goes wrong, whether due to Mother Nature or mechanical trouble, that Viking's failings come to the fore, and the promised excellence falters. We were a group of four booked on the Viking cruise from Lyon to Avignon, starting May 4, 2016. Arrival at the ship was largely uneventful, even though the arrangements for clients arriving on their own was not ideal. Finding the ship required a last minute phone call; fortunately we had a global phone at our disposal and we able to get the necessary information and get close to the ship to offload luggage. Personnel aboard the beautiful Viking Heimdal were unfailingly helpful, courteous and a pleasure to work with. The first indication that all would not be well came the first evening when the staff announced that high water in the Saone River prohibited sailing to the first stop (Macon). The excursion to Beaujolais would be handled by coach from Lyon, eliminating a half day river cruising each direction. Profuse apologies for the situation but nothing in the way of acknowledgement that a significant attraction of the itinerary was to be missed. It must be reiterated that the personnel aboard Heimdal were top notch and were doing their best within the resources given them by Viking to make everyone happy and give them an excellent vacation. Just one example, is the abysmal internet capacity Viking builds into its ships. Even the staff have great difficulty assisting clients online due to the poor quality of the internet onboard. After the third day in Lyon, we sailed in the early am to Vienne, arriving as most people were just getting up for breakfast. That day and the next couple went as planned in the itinerary, with the excellent local guides providing a fine introduction to their towns and the region. After a day in Avignon, the captain announced before dinner that the planned cruising to Tarascon (for Arles) had to be scrapped as a mechanical problem had developed with the ship. Again, coach tours to Arles had been arranged, but for a second time at least two partial days of river cruising were missed. Also, again, profuse apologies for the change in plans but nothing in the way of accommodation. Close reading of the cruise contract would reveal that such changes in itinerary are totally in the hands of the cruse line and no compensation is required. The total absence of any consideration for the diminution of the cruse offering, however, is a reflection of the corporate culture of Viking. It would have been so easy to simply offer the optional excursions as complimentary, for example, as a show of good will when forces, of whatever origin, caused the total cruise experience to be significantly diminished. We had, after all, booked a river cruise, not a coach tour with river segments. Of the scheduled 8 legs of river cruising, we accomplished 4; of the 6 cities/towns to overnight, we did 4, with three nights in Lyon and another three in Avignon. Then, the final straw, came when, on the penultimate evening of the cruise, the final bill was presented and it contained a credit (“from an outside source”, read our travel agent) that had not been revealed to us at the beginning of the cruise. We were left with a sizable credit balance that Viking policy would not allow to the used for gratuities, and also Viking policy had to be used on the cruise for which it was given. This “take it or leave it” seemed to be firm Viking policy, with no explanation as to why we had not been informed of the credit on boarding. In the end, we arranged a full day excursion for our last day, using up the credit and some extra out of our pocket. We had a great day but would not have chosen this excursion without the circumstances. In fairness, Viking has offered a sizable voucher for use on a future cruise as compensation for this last glitch but given our overall unhappiness with Viking as a company we are unlikely to use it. Finally, should anyone from Viking Heimdal, May 4 Lyon to Avignon, be reading this, nothing here should detract from the excellent service we enjoyed aboard. The staff onboard, from Captain Laurent, Cruise Director Bea, especially Program Director Patricia and Concierge Doru, to the restaurant and bar staffs and housekeeping, all performed superbly within the bounds of Viking policies. It is a shame that such dedicated people, superb ships, top notch cuisine, appealing itineraries and expensive advertising are diminished by a company that, in the face of the unexpected, places its bottom line above the fulfillment of the promise of an exceptional river cruising experience. Perhaps my expectations were too high, but the coach trip with river segments is just not a river cruise. Somehow, Viking should know that an make it right. Instead we were offered a bribe. I cannot recommend Viking. Read Less
Sail Date May 2016
We chose to celebrate our 40th anniversary 2016 on a Viking River Cruise from Lyon to Provence after once again visiting my best friend in Paris where she has lived since '69. We began our travels in our late 20's so have been to ... Read More
We chose to celebrate our 40th anniversary 2016 on a Viking River Cruise from Lyon to Provence after once again visiting my best friend in Paris where she has lived since '69. We began our travels in our late 20's so have been to Haiti in '76 to Turkey, Greece, Europe, Mexico, and many times to Paris and France. Never on a cruise before. Our Viking Cruise experience exceeded our expectations! Given our past experience that says a lot. We booked another Viking River Cruise for Spring 2017 going from Bordeaux through our favorite wine regions. We hope to chose yet another Viking River Cruise in 2018. Thinking ahead about the pleasure of it all definitely helps one get through the New England winter! The ship, staff, food are just wonderful as are the included shore excursions. All superb. Since it was our special anniversary we were given champagne and a cake at dinner. Upon retiring to our cabin we found red and white artificial rose pedals upon our comforter (I kept a few and still have them on my bedroom vanity tray) and two glasses with a bottle of wine with a card. What a delightful surprise. So lovely. We cherish the memory. We also enjoyed the people on our cruise especially two charming Korean couples. As a result of our raves a couple from Florida we know have decided to take the Paris to Normandy Viking Cruise this Spring (2017). She has been on several big cruise ships, once with me up the West Coast. I'm confident they will find their Viking experience to be a sublime and vastly superior experience. Read Less
Sail Date April 2016
Travelling with a friend, this was our first Viking cruise and first river cruise as well. We decided to go as an incentive/reward for my friend's recovery from hip replacement surgery. The choice of itinerary was based on length of ... Read More
Travelling with a friend, this was our first Viking cruise and first river cruise as well. We decided to go as an incentive/reward for my friend's recovery from hip replacement surgery. The choice of itinerary was based on length of cruise (I had commitments that precluded a longer cruise) and the desire to see a part of France I had never travelled, and one my friend had not seen in over 40 years. The experience of a Viking cruise was well worth our time and money. From the moment we claimed our luggage and walked out to meet our transfers at the airport, we knew we were in undeniably experienced and knowledgeable hands. Once onboard, the food and wines were excellent, the staff attentive and the ambiance relaxing yet stimulating. The included excursions were interesting and definitely should be taken. My friend on occasion chose the "leisurely" tour if there was a chance for too many stairs, and we compared notes after, finding that the regular tour generally had more information. We also added a few optional excursions and found them to be best of all! We are now negotiating when to take the next one - my friend is ready to leave anytime, but my scheduled commitments are a bit more demanding. But we are definitely returning within the year - perhaps the Danube next time? Read Less
Sail Date April 2016
We chose a Viking River Tour because ocean cruises have too many people. They feel like being in a crowded mall. This was our first trip to Europe. Viking was amazing. The ship was small and intimate. The crew was attentive. The ... Read More
We chose a Viking River Tour because ocean cruises have too many people. They feel like being in a crowded mall. This was our first trip to Europe. Viking was amazing. The ship was small and intimate. The crew was attentive. The concierge helped us make dinner reservations in Lyon based on our desire to have steak tartar. The concierge also helped us find a restaurant supply store when my husband expressed an interest in purchasing a French made frying pan. The included excursions were an excellent overview of the area. Our favorite was the trip to the wine chateau. The cabin was small (expected since this is a ship) but comfortable. Very little time was actually spent in the cabin. The dining was excellent. The food was predominately the local cuisine. It was a extreme cut above any all-inclusive we have gone to in Mexico or Jamaica. Of course the plane ride was very long and the jet leg was hellish. Large time change. The awful part was the long layovers. This trip was intended as a once in a lifetime deal. It's more expensive than our usual vacations. With that being said...we were so impressed that we have every intention of going again in a few years. We'll have to save up. Read Less
Sail Date April 2016
We have been on two Viking River Cruises so we know the quality of Viking. (We have also been on one Viking Ocean cruise and have another planned of Sept). We picked this river cruise for its itinerary. We have never been to the south of ... Read More
We have been on two Viking River Cruises so we know the quality of Viking. (We have also been on one Viking Ocean cruise and have another planned of Sept). We picked this river cruise for its itinerary. We have never been to the south of France. It began in Avignon and ended in Lyon. The Cruise Director, Christine, made ALL shore excursions excellent. We don't pick a river cruise for the cabin, but it was certainly adequate. We view the boat as a floating hotel. The food was very good, but we don't take a cruise for the food, we take a cruise for the itinerary. I hate beating a dead horse or repeating myself, but the itinerary is our most important reason for choosing a specific cruise. We don't choose a cruise boat or ship for the boat or ship, because (again) the boat or ship is a floating hotel. Read Less
Sail Date April 2016
We chose Viking because of friends who have traveled previously and enjoyed it. This was their fourth Viking tour with plans to travel again next year. The attention to personal detail by staff was a priority. From "good ... Read More
We chose Viking because of friends who have traveled previously and enjoyed it. This was their fourth Viking tour with plans to travel again next year. The attention to personal detail by staff was a priority. From "good morning" to service at mealtime to dealing with changing onshore tours. Everything was clean and neat with extra attention to the rooms. The balcony was appreciated, however, our weather did not warrant its use. The room was an adequate size. The food was country appropriate and very delicious and the wine kept coming. Meal time was looked forward to because of the view, the organization, and the friendliness of staff. The tour directors during land excursions were very knowledgeable and, for the most part, very understandable. The information discussed during bus rides was appreciated. We did spend way too much time on buses because of difficulties by Viking. We did not get the Cruising part of the journey. Read Less
Sail Date April 2016
Wanted a wine oriented cruise and the Agent Lynne suggested this as an alternative to the Burgandy tour, which included Paris and Dijon, both of which I had visited before.The staff and service were excellent. Our weather saw rain clouds ... Read More
Wanted a wine oriented cruise and the Agent Lynne suggested this as an alternative to the Burgandy tour, which included Paris and Dijon, both of which I had visited before.The staff and service were excellent. Our weather saw rain clouds and cold,every day, though not a Viking problem. Entertainment a pleasant surprise. Guides and tours first rate. Minor problem areas: (1) need instructions on shower operation (2) regular wines very good but upscale wines (Silver Spirit) should be upgraded.Ship is beautiful and well laid out..All dining provided excellent experience with variety and quality that could not have been better. As a widower travelling alone I was still made welcome and comfortable by the staff and other guests.Naturally, I enjoyed the wine tastings in the Beaujolais and Chateauneuf-duPape to taste these wines and see the beautiful areas proved rewarding. Also I particularly enjoyed our market tour with the chef.All in all a great trip and a top value. I would consider another wine related trip, such as your bordeaux trip Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
We originally booked because of a referral from a friend. After doing some research, we found that the line had many satisfied guests, our experience met and exceeded our expectations. The service was friendly and very good but not ... Read More
We originally booked because of a referral from a friend. After doing some research, we found that the line had many satisfied guests, our experience met and exceeded our expectations. The service was friendly and very good but not overbearing, the food was excellent, and the excursions were interesting and enjoyable. My constructive remarks are that the cabins are a bit small, especially the shower but very acceptable. The wifi was slow and sometimes had no service making it difficult to stay connected to work. Also wifi related, if the cabin would allow for a wifi connected TV device like an Amazon Fire Stick or a Chrome-cast (HDMI connected to the TV), so travelers can stream news from their respective countries, states and cities. The selection of standard channels on-board were very limited. We would absolutely travel with Viking again, maybe opt for one of the suites next time for more room (We chose Veranda B room), but overall, a very enjoyable cruise experience. Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
We chose this cruise because of the excellent reviews Viking gets. As good as the reviews were, we were still blown away by how good the trip was. We were picked up at the airport by a very friendly Viking rep and taken to the ship for a ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the excellent reviews Viking gets. As good as the reviews were, we were still blown away by how good the trip was. We were picked up at the airport by a very friendly Viking rep and taken to the ship for a very easy boarding. We were treated like they were genuinely glad to have us on board. None of the crowds and chaos of a large ocean cruise ship. The cabin was very small, but it was nicely decorated, extremely clean, and quite comfortable. The floor to ceiling window opened if we wanted and we never wished we had more space. The most amazing thing was that it was the most quiet room I have ever had, on a ship or otherwise. I never heard other passengers and I could not even tell that the ship was moving without looking out the window. Even though the room was very nice, we didn't spend a lot of time there because we were having too much fun on the shore excursions or in the common rooms with other guests. The food was consistently excellent, with plenty of choices. We had a tour of the kitchen and it was the cleanest kitchen I've ever seen. The chef was very entertaining. He said that he often buys fresh food while we are in port, to get the freshest supplies and also support the local businesses. I like that. There was an excursion included in the price of the cruise every day, and we went on all of them. Excellent local guides and we got electronic devises that allowed us to hear the guide from quite a long distance. This meant that we could wander and look at what we wanted, but still hear everything the guide was saying. it also meant that no one got lost and we never had to wait for stragglers to be rounded up. Service was outstanding, from the room steward to the dining room staff to the activities director. I would highly recommend Viking river cruises, and we will certainly be taking another trip with Viking in the future. Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
Boarded Viking Buri in Chalon sur Saône 11/8/15 for the Portraits of Southern France for 8 day cruise and optional 3 day extension in Nice. We were first time cruisers. Met at airport in Lyon by staff and transferred to Chalon. ... Read More
Boarded Viking Buri in Chalon sur Saône 11/8/15 for the Portraits of Southern France for 8 day cruise and optional 3 day extension in Nice. We were first time cruisers. Met at airport in Lyon by staff and transferred to Chalon. Found the Buri to be very comfortable and the staff to be very professional. The service was a highlight for us. We wanted to arrange a special anniversary meal in Lyon and the Concierge was especially helpful in looking over information we had gathered, doing her own research and making arrangements. It was a fantastic meal. Found the shore excursions to be well organized by local guides and liked the headsets used by the guides were a real plus as we walked. Meals were outstanding on-board and we appreciated the change in cuisine from central France to Provencal as we sailed south. We found the wine list good and also appreciated being able to choose from local wines. The serving staff was outstanding at meals. Activities offered after dinner were not our "cup of tea" but others seemed to enjoy them. Our only complaint was that we did a lot of travel by night, and that cut down on being able to sit on-deck and enjoy the scenery. I would have opted for less time on excursions and more time cruising - perhaps a different itinerary would better provide for this. Disembarkation at Avignon and transfer to Nice was smooth. Le Meridien Hotel in Nice was ideally situated, but the rooms were a little dated and disappointing. Excursions were we'll done. Weather was fantastic during our stay in France - could not have asked for better. Our air travel was arranged by Viking and we enjoyed our flights on Lufthansa. We opted for premium economy for the trans-atlantic legs of the journey and would recommend this upgrade. Our flight from Nice to Frankfurt was on-time but the transfer time to our connecting flight was under an hour and that is a mistake at Frankfurt, especially with Passport Control. We had to literally run to make the connection - travel agents should know better than to schedule things this tight. We very much enjoyed our trip and look to book another river cruise in the future. Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
Our trip started in Lyon and ended in Nice. (We did the extension.) The Staff and Crew of the Buri paid attention to virtually every detail with warmth and friendliness. The accommodations were lovely. The bed was very comfortable and ... Read More
Our trip started in Lyon and ended in Nice. (We did the extension.) The Staff and Crew of the Buri paid attention to virtually every detail with warmth and friendliness. The accommodations were lovely. The bed was very comfortable and details such as 110-120v outlets in key places in the state room were so helpful. The food was outstanding as was the service in both the dining room and the lounge. The daily excursions were so well organized with top notch guides and "quiet boxes" so you didn't miss anything. We were delighted with visits to several wineries, beautiful towns, the many opportunities to meet local residents, visit historic sites, and just take in the Burgundy and Provençal regions. The extension to Nice was enjoyable. Accommodations were satisfactory (although we were spoiled by the level of luxury on the Buri). Nice is beautiful, but we truly enjoyed the day trips to the surrounding medieval towns. We love visiting France anyway, but the river cruise was uniquely special. I cannot overstate what a wonderful time we had. I strongly recommend Viking and this specific trip. Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
Our third Viking River cruise. Service , food and staff usual high standard. Ship was beautiful - modern , airy and clean. New outside terrace too - fortunately we had good weather so ate outside several times . Tables were quickly taken ... Read More
Our third Viking River cruise. Service , food and staff usual high standard. Ship was beautiful - modern , airy and clean. New outside terrace too - fortunately we had good weather so ate outside several times . Tables were quickly taken at lunch time but everyone appeared sociable and were willing to share . Perhaps a few tables for two are needed as sometimes we didn't feel like chatting and would have preferred a romantic lunch together. Oliver the director was outstanding- chatty, fun and had some clever acts up his sleeve which were displayed several evenings . [ His background was a professional in the circus/ entertainment field]. Itinerary was a little disappointing .. to many visits to Roman remains for us . We enjoyed the wine tastings and learnt a great deal about wine . [ It all gets you drunk whatever you pay for it !!] We felt more free time for wandering or shopping was needed but lunch beckoned on board .Morning excursions were included , afternoon ones were optional and charged for. We didn't go on the afternoon excursions. We went for a walk along the river or relaxed on board . We had the 'drinks' package. We totted up our daily alcohol and fancy coffees and it definitely worked out cheaper for us than paying[ individually ] as a total at the end of the cruise. Our cabin was 106, with a small high window [lower deck ] and suited us perfectly,we wouldn't have sat outside on a balcony on October. Luxurious toiletries as usual. Bed comfy and with the climate control adjusted to out desired room temperature at night , we slept well. Disembarkation was smoothly organised and transfer to Marseilles airport on a luxury coach . Met at the airport by a Viking rep. who steered us through check in and answered any queries. Read Less
Sail Date October 2015
Previously, we had enjoyed the Bordeaux, Chateaux, Rivers and Wine tour through the western part of France. In addition we had booked the delightful pre-cruise trip through the scenic Loire Valley, Our time in western France had been so ... Read More
Previously, we had enjoyed the Bordeaux, Chateaux, Rivers and Wine tour through the western part of France. In addition we had booked the delightful pre-cruise trip through the scenic Loire Valley, Our time in western France had been so nice that we decided to experience eastern France. We were not disappointed, and our weather was just as perfect as it appears in your Viking literature - sunny and warm. It goes without saying that our accommodations on board the Buri, the food, and the courtesy and helpfulness of the staff were excellent. We enjoyed the included tours in each port; the guides were quite knowledgeable. We also took advantage of the many optional tours available. Who knew there was such a plethera of Roman history in France! We are definitely river boat " fans." It is wonderful to have a floating four star hotel alongside wonderful places to explore just a gangway away - a little town walk before breakfast, a stroll after dinner - all right there. Enjoying southern France with Viking was delightful. Read Less
Sail Date October 2015
I always wanted to see the vineyards and the lavender fields. This leisure travel was perfect. The quaint towns we visited and all the wonderful architecture were grand. The ship, the staff, the service, the food, the excursions all ... Read More
I always wanted to see the vineyards and the lavender fields. This leisure travel was perfect. The quaint towns we visited and all the wonderful architecture were grand. The ship, the staff, the service, the food, the excursions all marvelous, Not to mention the food market tour, the restaurants, the wine tastings and the wonderful shopping. We met wonderful people and even exchanged email and mailing addresses of several at the end of the trip. The chef was terrific. He took on a food tour of the market in Lyon and did a cooking demonstration one afternoon. Very friendly and supportive of our every need. The wine and food were wonderful. Every evening we had the best meals. The ship was clean and well cared for the entire trip. Every day trip was a new experience. The tour guides were well informed and talented. They answered all our questions and gave us time to take photos and really see each site. The rooms were very clean and the maid was bright shiny and happy. She took good care of us. As we are both Grandmothers we didn't travel with children. This was a trip for us not for children. We have been friends for over 30 years, both widows and wanted a trip that was to see the sites we had always wanted to see. France was at the top of my bucket list and I'm so glad that I went on a River Cruise. And we added days in Nice at the end of the trip. Our transfers and flights were excellent. The hotel in Nice could have been improved. I only rated it as fair. That did not dampen our fun and I have positive things to share with all my friends on Viking River Cruises. Just Grand Read Less
Sail Date October 2015
This was our first Viking Cruise. We have another booked based on our most excellent experience with this cruise. The staff and courtesy is a continuous extension of the outstanding shipboard management and facilities. Always ready to help ... Read More
This was our first Viking Cruise. We have another booked based on our most excellent experience with this cruise. The staff and courtesy is a continuous extension of the outstanding shipboard management and facilities. Always ready to help and genuinely interested in your comfort, the staff of the Hermod was a joy. Both the cruise director and the hotel manager made a concerted effort to get to know all of the patrons. I particularly noted the preparation and planning that went into every event. The behind the scenes coordination and the professional execution were top notch. The River Cruise highlights that were of most interest to me were: the offering of multiple options on daily tours; the ability to meet other shipmates, and the ability to actually relax and enjoy the scenery. The crew and staff made this trip exceptional. Granted, the ship was first class, but it is the crew that makes the difference and this crew is the best! Read Less
Sail Date October 2015
My husband and I have been on many cruises, but this was our first river cruise. We were really looking forward to the experience of sitting on the top deck (or our own balcony which we paid extra for) and watching the French countryside ... Read More
My husband and I have been on many cruises, but this was our first river cruise. We were really looking forward to the experience of sitting on the top deck (or our own balcony which we paid extra for) and watching the French countryside and drinking some good French Wine. Our first day was just that - a beautiful views from the sun deck with a good glass of wine. On our second day in Lyon after a nice city tour, we were informed during our daily review that there was a problem with a critical part of the ship and our departure would be delayed. We were disappointed but were expecting the delay to be a half a day at most. This delay became 3 days. The cities and towns that we were supposed to be crusing to became bus tours of over 2 hours each direction and terrible rush hour traffic on return to Lyon. (where we were parked for 4 days with a view of a stone wall and a bike path). Once the part was replaced, we only cruised at night when we were sleeping. We never had the use of our balcony for river cruising. To top it off, the cruise before ours (on another ship) had the norovirus and those passengers were allowed to board our ship. We had no coffee bar, no access to public restrooms, no salt and pepper, or sugar and cream on the tables, no bar snacks. We had to be served at the buffet breakfast (3 or 4 people serving several hundred passengers). We were not offered any renumeration for our inconvenience - not even a token bottle of champagne. The basic attitude was "it is out of our control - not our fault". Since we paid significantly more for a river cruise than we would have for a land tour (and a "hotel room" on the ship that was significantly smaller than a normal hotel room) we asked Viking for a partial refund. Our request was refused with an offer for a discount on a future cruise. We will NOT be taking another Viking Cruise. As an IT professional where we have disaster recovery plans for "critical systems" I would have expected Viking to be able to replace a part in the heart of Europe in less than 3 days - particularly for a cruise for 6 nights. The ship was nice, the food was good but not exceptional. Overall the personnel were professional and competent. The itinerary was good - we really would have loved the ability to walk on and off the ship to the small towns instead of being ferried on a bus with limited time to really appreciate the local culture. We saw plenty of other cruise lines on the same itinerary - I would recommend considering one of them. Read Less
Sail Date September 2015
We loved the Viking Delling Southern France River cruise. The ship is perfect for relaxing cruising and stops along the river for tours. The ship layout feels very spacious when your in the dining, lounge or deck areas and you spend very ... Read More
We loved the Viking Delling Southern France River cruise. The ship is perfect for relaxing cruising and stops along the river for tours. The ship layout feels very spacious when your in the dining, lounge or deck areas and you spend very little time in your room except to sleep. The cabins are small but efficient and sure meet out needs. You want to be out visiting the towns along the river on the free tours provided by Viking and the tours are very well done by Viking experts in each town. The ship activities were top notch each day and things like Frances cheese tastings gave you knowledge of the making of cheese and then the tasting of each of the cheeses and how each region in France has different tastes. The best thing about Viking Delling is that you are pampered by an excellent staff on a ship that is perfect for river crusing. Read Less
Sail Date September 2015
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