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48 Marseille to Europe - River Cruise Reviews

Having enjoyed a smaller canal cruise in Alsace, we were ready to try a cruise on the Rhone river. Reviews of various river cruise lines consistently pointed to Scenic as a quality choice. Although the Sapphire is not new, we found it to ... Read More
Having enjoyed a smaller canal cruise in Alsace, we were ready to try a cruise on the Rhone river. Reviews of various river cruise lines consistently pointed to Scenic as a quality choice. Although the Sapphire is not new, we found it to be sparkling in both design and maintenance. We were welcomed on board by the captain and his staff and assigned to a lovely balcony cabin, newly serviced and polished. When I found the young women in the hallway who I suspected had cleaned our room, she actually jumped and clapped her hands saying "Oh, that's one of my rooms", when I expressed my appreciation for her work. (That gesture of appreciation on my part was not wasted, since I think I got extra chocolates on turndown every evening.) However we found that degree of pride and ownership expressed uniformly throughout the cruise staff, no matter the occupation. The availability of friendly and accommodating staff and attention to detail was a hallmark of our cruise. The business of serving delicious and varied meals, as well as the chore of getting 130 people to and from land tours on schedule was handled efficiently and pleasantly. Although our final docking was unavailable due to water conditions in the river, that too was handled smoothly and in a friendly manner. From the lovely meals, the wine tasting and cooking demonstration to the afternoon cappuccinos in the lounge and the music and dancing in the evenings, to the time spent on our private balcony listening to music and watching the scenery go by, we considered our Rhone river cruise on the Scenic Sapphire a splendid success. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
We had been on other river cruises but this was the first time on an Emerald ship. The ship was lovely- clean and well planned. our cabin was one of the cheaper ones and lower down with only a small high window but it was perfectly fine ... Read More
We had been on other river cruises but this was the first time on an Emerald ship. The ship was lovely- clean and well planned. our cabin was one of the cheaper ones and lower down with only a small high window but it was perfectly fine with plenty of room. The staff were the highlight of the cruise, especially Jana, the cruise director. She was friendly, unflappable and very good at her job. All the staff seemed to gel together well and this made for a nice atmosphere on board. The food was amazing and you never went hungry. The waiting staff and the bar staff were charming. We visited many places and the included walking tours were generally informative. There was a good choice of extra trips if you wanted to explore further. The swimming pool on board was great and, although small, was big enough to swim a few strokes in. The only criticism is that much of the sailing was done at night. It would have been nice to have seen a bit more of the scenery. I would certainly go on an Emerald cruise again. Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
We chose this cruise, because we have travel with Viking before, we did the Danube Budapest to Bucharest, and we enjoy it very much, this time we one.. We love the history, the towns we visit were very interested, the Tour guide were ... Read More
We chose this cruise, because we have travel with Viking before, we did the Danube Budapest to Bucharest, and we enjoy it very much, this time we one.. We love the history, the towns we visit were very interested, the Tour guide were great, except we have one that did not speak very good English. but it was ok.. Avignon, we enjoy the Palace of the Popes, and the other towns as well , the tour guide were very informative. We were sorry we did not bring a good pair of shoes, due to the stone they use to build the streets. roads. we wish we had more bus tours. The ship was great, food was ok, no much variety, the cheft need it a little more creativity. to mix with the meat. Also we did not like that dinner was so late in the evening. we went to bed with a full belly, Entertaiment was ok, we would have like when they, more culture , ones. Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
We had friends recommend Viking Cruises and this trip in particular. We wanted to experience France without the bother of driving and unpacking more than once. We wanted a curated experience that we could just enjoy without any travel ... Read More
We had friends recommend Viking Cruises and this trip in particular. We wanted to experience France without the bother of driving and unpacking more than once. We wanted a curated experience that we could just enjoy without any travel hassles. Our ships suite was perfect. We chose a suite with sitting room and balcony. We did not use the balcony. Too chilly and never any time to use it. The food was exceptional with great choices. The service in both the lounge and the restaurant was first class. All the staff was so friendly and helpful. The excursions were amazing. The guides were very knowledgeable and engaging to be with. We really enjoyed the cocktail hour before dinner, chatting with other passengers about their day and learning what was in store for the following day. We really liked the size of the ship. Big enough to accommodate 180 people but not feel crowded, even when everyone was in the lounge or dining room for dinner. Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
Prior trips to France were in the north and west. This was a nice opportunity to view the arts, ruins and food of a culturally rich region. The staff was flawless and provided us with opportunities to relax as well as sight-see. ... Read More
Prior trips to France were in the north and west. This was a nice opportunity to view the arts, ruins and food of a culturally rich region. The staff was flawless and provided us with opportunities to relax as well as sight-see. Dining was excellent, and excursion guides, especially in Paris, were well educated and entertaining. Our Notre Dame/Left Bank guide was especially amazing. Few have been so entertaining and well educated! It would have been nice to have more available lectures and other background briefings. Years we enjoyed a small British line staffed in part with classical scholars. There the food was quite simple but the history and culture most enriching. Our stateroom was a bit small but adequate Food was good and we enjoyed the French wines with meals and available espresso drinks between meals. The staff was friendly and accomodating. This was our third Viking cruise. We especially enjoyed the large ship cruise from Montreal to NYC. Viking seems to fill a niche occupied primarily by Lindblad. We missed the "big ship" facilities for lectures and floor shows but Viking guides were fine (esp. Paris Notre Dame). We were blown away by the prior Montreal voyage, featuring Edvard Muench art & accompanying music. We are likely to take Viking whenever possible. Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
Viking was highly recommended by friends, and a river cruise you get to see many different towns near the river, and the tour guides tell you the history of each stop. The nice thing about a river cruise is that you have not only the ... Read More
Viking was highly recommended by friends, and a river cruise you get to see many different towns near the river, and the tour guides tell you the history of each stop. The nice thing about a river cruise is that you have not only the hotel, all the meals, and the tour guides for each port. Relaxing, it was not, because each morning you were up early, first to get your breakfast, then to get ready for your guided tour, most tours started at 9am. Then after the tour, back to the ship for lunch. Sometimes the were tours in the afternoon right after lunch. Some tours ended up quite late, so the dinner was a late one. We saw a lot, however, despite the busy schedule. Regarding the shore excursions, some of the guides were very difficult to understand, especially with their heavy french accent. The cabin was rather small, but considering that this was a river ship, it was adequate for us as we are small, but for large people it would be rather very compact, especially the shower. The service was great. Dining was good, especially the breakfast and lunch buffets. We were disappointed with the quality of the dinners, as for a ship of this caliber, the dinners could use some improvement. The entertainment was not like in the ocean cruises, we had one or two outside singers/entertainers for the whole week. There was a ship piano player every night. We opted to include air as part of the package; From Northern California. Viking did a fabulous job of organizing the whole trip, from getting the airfare to providing transportation to the ship, and meeting us with Viking personnel at the airports. We are already booked on another Viking cruise, an ocean cruise to the British Isles, Ireland and Scotland. Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
we saw this as an opportunity to see French towns and that did not disappoint. however the staff are fed up and unhappy. If management went undercover they'd gauge their staff as they are easy to talk to you and slag off the company. ... Read More
we saw this as an opportunity to see French towns and that did not disappoint. however the staff are fed up and unhappy. If management went undercover they'd gauge their staff as they are easy to talk to you and slag off the company. this is not good as it filters to passengers. the food is basic and certainly not top notch. complimentary drink or people on the full package do not get their glasses refilled often and it's clear the staff are under orders not to re-fill often. I mean there was a long wait between drinks. their are not enough waiters in the bar and they deliberately wander around trying not to make eye contact, again a sign on not serving too many drinks and top deck on sun lounge no staff were ever seen - shocking. shore excursions - extra trips are over priced and not value for money. other companies are certainly better. overall rating average. entertainment is poor and the pianist is clearly depressed. you could save money and put on a CD. they are now not bothered if staff or especially passengers sanitise on leaving and entering ship and not bothered if passengers sanitise going into restaurant. again, shocking as a lot of old people and infection control is paramount. Read Less
Sail Date October 2017
My husband and I booked our first river cruise with Viking because of the fabulous stories we heard from many friends and acquaintances. The Rhone trip to Provence and Lyon really appealed to us and a September sailing date promised fine ... Read More
My husband and I booked our first river cruise with Viking because of the fabulous stories we heard from many friends and acquaintances. The Rhone trip to Provence and Lyon really appealed to us and a September sailing date promised fine weather. Our trip was a perfect experience! Our Viking crew was certainly dedicated to making every detail seamless and enjoyable - from travel assistance to dining experiences, shore excursions to personal comforts aboard ship. Dining on board was so wonderful that we rarely stayed ashore for meals. The ports we visited were great choices for cultural and educational experiences and the local guides added personal stories and a sense of pride in describing the histories of their towns and cities. After eight days, we could say that there was never a single glitch. Upon our return home, we joined the chorus of those who sing the praises of Viking River Cruises. We're looking forward to our next cruise...the Rhine? Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
This was our first trip to Europe and with the optional tours provided by Viking, we felt like we really got to see the South of France. Instead of stopping at only the big cities, the Viking Delling stopped at smaller locations. The ... Read More
This was our first trip to Europe and with the optional tours provided by Viking, we felt like we really got to see the South of France. Instead of stopping at only the big cities, the Viking Delling stopped at smaller locations. The optional tours were always first class and covered a wide range of options. They left on time and returned on time. The guides were amazing in their local knowledge and ability to share interesting facts. Their use of the English language made it easy to understand. The food was amazing and the dining became a highlight of the day ~ actually at every meal. Optional seating arrangements allowed us to meet many different people from all over the world. The food was very well done and there were choices for appetizers, salads, main course, wine and dessert at EVERY meal. The service was top notch. Our stateroom was the most efficient use of space and design we could imagine. Storage was plentiful and we were impressed with the cleanliness throughout the cruise. The sheets were high quality and the bed was comfortable. The bathroom was well laid out. What a great way to see France for the first time. We look forward to our next Viking River Cruise. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
SENSENTIONS OF SOUTHERN FRANCE - EMERALD LIBERTE My wife and I decided to take our first river cruise with Emerald Waterways after some favourable reviews. We chose the above vessel with the departure from Arles to Lyon on the ... Read More
SENSENTIONS OF SOUTHERN FRANCE - EMERALD LIBERTE My wife and I decided to take our first river cruise with Emerald Waterways after some favourable reviews. We chose the above vessel with the departure from Arles to Lyon on the River Rhone on 1 July. I trusted Emerald to organised the flights, transfers and the cruise and paid a supplement to fly from Bristol to Marseille via Amsterdam. with KLM. Our flight from Bristol was 30/40 minutes late taking off due to air traffic control and weight transfer of some passengers & luggage from rear to front of the plane on advice of KLM Central Headquarters. Everyone knows planes generally do not take off on time apart from Ryanair! Consequently, we missed our connecting flight in Amsterdam and were then routed with Air France to Paris Charles de Gaulle mainly due to the very short transfer time of 50 minutes ( the gate closed 30 minutes before take off ) The Paris airport was extremely busy and just before we were due to board the aircraft, an airport emergency was called where everybody inc people already on board planes were told to exit the airport! Police and army units were racing through the terminals with machine guns and riot gear. After 2 hours, we were allowed to re-enter the airport but no announcements were forthcoming to advise passengers what to do and where to go. At this time we noticed our flight to Marseille was cancelled along with many others. After finding an Air France official, we were advised to join a queue along with 3500 others to rebook our flights the following day. This was 6pm and it was NOT until 2.30am the following day did we reach the check-in desk. My wife and I took hourly turns to queue before sitting down again whilst airport staff handed out bottled water. Total 8.5 hours queueing! At this time, I booked an airport hotel Citizen M and had to use a taxi as the shuttle train between terminals had already stopped. At the check-in desk we managed to secure flights for 8.25am on the Sunday but we were advised that as there were 5000 pieces of luggage in transit, there would be no guarantee that our hold luggage would be with us! I spoke to Emerald Waterways in Switzerland on their emergency telephone number and was advised what to do as well as them contacting the Emerald Liberte to let them know we would be a day late arriving. Thank goodness the boat was not leaving Arles until 6 pm on the Sunday. After only 3 hours sleep we journeyed again to the Terminal 3 airport to check-in for our flight. As there were no transfers available on Sunday, we took a taxi from Marseille Airport to Arles at a cost of E200 which was paid thankfully by the Cruise Director on the ship. We were pleased to be advised that our French balcony cabin had be upgraded to a Grand Balcony Suite and given a premium drinks package. The sting in the tail is the lack of customer care from Emerald Waterways on our return. It was very difficult to speak to anyone in that department and after a complaint for reimbursement of hotel, taxi etc - I spoke to Darren Fricker at customer care who was as "obnoxious " in his telephone manner as the tone of his email! Emerald stated by email:- "EmeraldWaterways  have no liability to make any payment to you in relation to the Denied Boarding Regulations or in respect of any flight cancellation or delay, downgrading of any flight ticket or denial of any boarding as the full amount of your entitlement to any compensation or other payment (as dealt with above) is covered by the airline’s obligations under the Denied Boarding Regulations". "In light of the above, I feel sure you will appreciate, your request for compensation and out of pocket expenses cannot be met". In other words they have chosen to say " go away" - their duty of care to their customers does NOT exist. I have lodged a delay claim with Air France and hope they will pay out. The ship which was only 3 months old was excellent along with the service from the Cruise Director, Darren and his staff. Food quality was very good. Entertainment was quite basic mainly a pianist playing after dinner. Port and Excursions were well organisied and varied. We would consider another river cruise - maybe NOT with Emerald Waterways due to their UK operation in Manchester Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
We love history, we love Roman history, and we love wine. We had never been to France before, and this trip gave us everything. Viking organization is impeccable; the shore tours are extremely well conducted. The tour guides are always ... Read More
We love history, we love Roman history, and we love wine. We had never been to France before, and this trip gave us everything. Viking organization is impeccable; the shore tours are extremely well conducted. The tour guides are always first class. There is never any ambiguity about where and when events are going on. I am impressed with how the crew gets everyone to participate, and enjoy themselves. We love the food on board. We really appreciate the local cuisine offerings. We also appreciate the portion sizes - just right. There's never any problem enjoying all the courses and the dessert. The house wines are always good. I know the staff must be working very hard to keep things running smoothly and on time, but they always have a smile and are polite and friendly. They get to know you, even in a trip as short as one week. I have encouraged my friends and acquaintances to consider a Viking trip, even if they think it's only for the well-off, as there are frequent special offers. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
We chose the French Provence cruise because we wanted to explore southern France and end it in Paris. Every port gave us an opportunity to see the cities and villages of France. While giving a wonderful place to return to on board the ... Read More
We chose the French Provence cruise because we wanted to explore southern France and end it in Paris. Every port gave us an opportunity to see the cities and villages of France. While giving a wonderful place to return to on board the ship. The rooms were very comfortable and the cuisine was delicious. Entertainment was entertaining. The pianist was very good. All of the staff was friendly and helpful with whatever was needed. We travel with our malienial daughter and she thoroughly enjoyed the river cruise up the Rhone and Saone. She really enjoyed the food and drinks provided by Viking. And the cuisine was geared to give everyone a taste of France. The smaller size ship gives a more intimate feeling and enables the guests to mist and mingle. She found the cruise very enriching and would definitely cruise with Viking in the further, saying it is not just a cruise for older people. Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
We were intrigued by the combination ability on this particular cruise. We wanted to see a lot of France and so we started on the Heimdal on the Rhone but after that week was over we took the high speed train to Paris and joined the ... Read More
We were intrigued by the combination ability on this particular cruise. We wanted to see a lot of France and so we started on the Heimdal on the Rhone but after that week was over we took the high speed train to Paris and joined the Viking Rinda for a second week, this time on the Seine. Both were excellent. Our cabin was lovely and comfortable and even the weather co-operated (both cruises) and we were able to sit out on our verandah and relax when we didn't feel like going up to the upper deck and join the masses. The food, service, crew, etc are top notch. And so many "extras" are included so we didn't feel nickel & dimed to death like on all the ocean cruises (big ships) we've been on. Loved it! This was our 4th & 5th cruise with Viking River Cruises and it won't be our last. We've also been on one of Viking's ocean cruises and won't go back to the "big" ships after such a lovely inclusive and intimate trip. Read Less
Sail Date March 2017
Our friends invited us to go and gave us the contact of Colley Croteau. We are first time cruisers and just loved everything. The room was lovely. The bathroom floor was heated which was beyond wonderful. The food delicious and ... Read More
Our friends invited us to go and gave us the contact of Colley Croteau. We are first time cruisers and just loved everything. The room was lovely. The bathroom floor was heated which was beyond wonderful. The food delicious and plentiful. The service exemplary. We enjoyed every tour. I especially loved the locks; which were totally unexpected and thrilling. I would have appreciated more educational information about the locks - when and how they were built. The ship was absolutely lovely. I would have liked more time on the sundeck which seemed to be closed more than it was open. Our welcome bus was parked extremely far from the airport so it was a bumpy welcome after a long plane ride. Noone let us know that we would be shlepping 1/2 mile to the bus (from deplaning through terminal to greeting to bus probably >1 mile.) We were disappointed that the ship could not go past Lyon due to high water which made our commute to our last tour over 90 minutes one way. The buses were very well appointed, comfortable and offered great views through clean windows. Back to our room - everything was perfect, clean, new, comfortable, well-lit. The excursions were perfectly organized and very interesting. The entertainment was okay - nothing much; but, enjoyable. We were made to feel very very special and it was lovely to have only 170 people on the ship. Easy in and out. Can't wait for our next river cruise! Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
I wanted to go to Avignon and wasn't disappointed. The other ports of call Vienne, Lyon, Arles, etc. were lovely and interesting. The winery excursion was interesting and fun. Really all of the excursions were excellent - the tour ... Read More
I wanted to go to Avignon and wasn't disappointed. The other ports of call Vienne, Lyon, Arles, etc. were lovely and interesting. The winery excursion was interesting and fun. Really all of the excursions were excellent - the tour guides were knowledgeable and entertaining. The dining room crew in particular were excellent. Viking is organized and attentive to detail so that everything runs seamlessly. The cabin was nice and pretty much as expected. Everyone on board seemed to be focused on ensuring a great trip for every passenger. The dining room crew, in particular, were excellent -- they helped to make meals fun. The food was great - I do recommend the drinks package. As mentioned earlier the dining room personnel were beyond excellent and attentive. One major issue - a virus - was addressed quickly but could have been communicated better. I will definitely try another river cruise and am looking forward to planning one in 2018, Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
We chose this cruise because we had never been to France on river cruise. This trip was in our top three favorite vacations of all time. Viking Cruises, in our opinion, is the best way to travel abroad and get the most bang for your ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we had never been to France on river cruise. This trip was in our top three favorite vacations of all time. Viking Cruises, in our opinion, is the best way to travel abroad and get the most bang for your buck. The Cruise personal are second to none. They seem to make it their mission to get to know every passenger and try to meet all of their needs. The boat, in our second experience, only holds 190 passengers so we get to meet lots of fun and interesting individuals. We have made lasting friends on both of our cruises. We are in the process of planning our third cruise with a couple we met on our most recent cruise. All of the cruise personnel are professional, kind, friendly and very helpful in every way. They sincerely care that you have the best experience possible on their cruises. The food and service and service personnel are second to none. Everyone needs to experience a Viking Cruise. We are planning our third cruise. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
My wife and I have had many cruises over the years, but never a river cruise. We have used a number of cruise lines, but the last 3 cruises have been with Oceania, which we dearly love and we have another booked for the 4th June this year ... Read More
My wife and I have had many cruises over the years, but never a river cruise. We have used a number of cruise lines, but the last 3 cruises have been with Oceania, which we dearly love and we have another booked for the 4th June this year in our favourite suite. Having extensivly covered the Med, we thought that a river cruise may give us another wide variety of places to see, but in a slightly lazier way along the banks of the rivers of Europe and perhaps further afield and as we are i our 75th year, we do like variety. At the Birmingham NEC Cruise show in 2016, we booked the cruise with Oceania, but then saw the stand of Scenic River Cruises. We had been told that they were one of the best, so we went along and chatted with Stacey Owen, who was very helpful and having explained that we had never had a river cruise before we explained that wanted spacious accomodation, as we usually have a suite aboard Oceania, so we elected to have the Royal Panorama Suite (337) which gave us that space. Flying from London Heathrow to Marselles was ok, but had a long wait on the coach when we arrived, as some passengers were on the next flight, so a 2 hour + wait on the coach was not really appreciated and there were several complaints made by others. Once aboard the ship, all looked good. Our suite was at the rear of the boat with a panoramic window and very comfortable. Food aboard was good, although if you happened to be at the back of the line, some dishes had gone, which seemed poor for the standards expected. However, we soon learned how to be thare early. Our greatest dissapointment was something totally unexpected and never explained to us when booking. We had hoped to be on deck as we sailed along the rivers, as shown in all the videos and in the printed brochures. Nice deck space with deck chairs etc to pass a relaxing few hours between stop-off points along the way and catch up on some sunshine. NO SUCH LUCK. Apparently, the top deck of the ship, where the sunchairs on the mock grass, is closed off during sailing times as the bridges are low. Now how silly is that. Sailing the rivers and not being able to use the top deck as you sail along because the bridges would be endangering passengers. One slightly lower deck did have some chairs and tables, but soon got filled up and no sunchairs for anyone. The top deck is only available when anchored at destinations, when for most of that time passengers were sight seeing and not on board. For a 7 night trip on a river cruise at £4,440 per person with no sunbathing facilities and no pool has put us off considering any future river cruises. A great pity that we will not see another side of cruising, but there are limits and these were not met by Scenic. We did not make any complaint, other than to let our travel agents that river cruises are not for us because of the facilities, as we felt it was our choice and perhaps our levels of expectation at those prices are higher than others. It may be worth others checking if the sunbathing and other facilities are fully available during the cruise, or closed down because of the low bridges. It should have been mentioed as a false impression is certainly given in video's and brochures that all facilities shown are available. Not for us, so be careful. Malcolm & Helen Read Less
Sail Date September 2016
This was my third river cruise with Uniworld. This trip, I chose the SS Catherine. I have been on the SS Antioinette down the Rhine and the River Princess down the Danube. I enjoyed all three trips and highly recommend them to my ... Read More
This was my third river cruise with Uniworld. This trip, I chose the SS Catherine. I have been on the SS Antioinette down the Rhine and the River Princess down the Danube. I enjoyed all three trips and highly recommend them to my friends. I found the crew on the SS Catherine was exceptional, including the waiters in the dining room. The activities were well planned and each stop along the excurison was something of interest. I enjoyed the Chateau and the wonderful lunch and wine tasting with the Count. The guide in Viviers was exceptional and we got to see the inside of her home and how the French lived. If you wanted physical activity you could use the ships exercise room or swimming in the ship's pool, go bike riding or kayaking or hiking in the terraced grape fields. The cabins are a luxury and always kept clean by your individual housekeeper. The food was exceptional. If it was not on the menu, you only had to ask and it appeared and if you liked it, they would bring you as many servings as you liked. My friend had gone on a big ocean liner cruise to Alaska last year and had a bill for over $400 for drinks only. She could not believe that all the wines and soft drinks she had on this Uniworld trip was no charge. After drinking both red and white wines at dinner, we would sip Bally's/Kaula while listening to the piano and singer entertain us in the lounge after stuffing ourselves at dinner. The menu was different each night and you were not restricted to one choice. I also liked the laundry room which allowed the passengers to do their laundry at their leisure. The ship provided all the equipment, including washer/dryer/iron and soap. Although I love coming home after a long trip, it was difficult to have to make my own bed, cook my own food and no one to wait on me hand and foot! Read Less
Sail Date August 2016
I ended up on this my first river cruise by default. My cousin's friend was returning from New Zealand and it seemed too short a turn around to go on the cruise so she asked her to see if she could find someone to take her place. I ... Read More
I ended up on this my first river cruise by default. My cousin's friend was returning from New Zealand and it seemed too short a turn around to go on the cruise so she asked her to see if she could find someone to take her place. I was the lucky person and was not disappointed. It was my first but it will not be my last. The Buri staff was wonderful. I was so impressed by the food and the service. By the second sitting, even though there was open seating, staff knew preferences. I was impressed with the portion control and the organization of the kitchen under the direction of Executive Chef Dimitris Sidiropoulos. I was even more impressed after a tour he led of his kitchen and a subsequent trip to the market with him and the Programme Director Jean-Pierre Enguix. My family had a restaurant for 55 years so I certainly appreciate that part of the cruise very much. Everything from port and shore excursions and life on board was well done. We were well treated from the time of arrival at the airport until our departure. Unfortunately we were the first group off the boat and had to get a 6:30 a.m. flight from Lyon but we still had the opportunity to be offered a good breakfast. The organization of the departure was impressive but then the whole cruise was superbly organized. Jean Pierre was an excellent Programme Director and everywhere making sure we were well looked after. Top marks to all. My previous travels have taken me to land travel in Bolivia, Venezula, U.S., China, trekking & camping in Tibet and living in a gur camp in Mongolia . Read Less
Sail Date May 2016
Heard so many rave comments we chose Viking. Also Viking allowed some free time but not too much compared to other companies and that appealed to us. Very knowledgeable staff from Program Director to the person making up our bed in the ... Read More
Heard so many rave comments we chose Viking. Also Viking allowed some free time but not too much compared to other companies and that appealed to us. Very knowledgeable staff from Program Director to the person making up our bed in the cabin, Viking representatives met and transported us everywhere and the food was great. We thoroughly enjoyed learning about France, particularly walking around on our own and exploring. We immediately booked another trip for next year to different countries. We met wonderful people from other countries that made the learning experience so much more. We suggest Americans not be clique-ish and hang around with the same people/relatives/friends they grew up with and mix in more. Liked the idea of reading the menu a couple of hours before going into the dining area. We always ordered from the left side of the menu, the one with the very regional foods! Read Less
Sail Date April 2016
This is my second river cruise and it is the best. Everyone from the cruise staff, tour guides and drivers to traveling passengers, all were so friendly and had made my cruise very enjoyable. The itinerary is very well organized and ... Read More
This is my second river cruise and it is the best. Everyone from the cruise staff, tour guides and drivers to traveling passengers, all were so friendly and had made my cruise very enjoyable. The itinerary is very well organized and everything was very timely, exception of the rainy weather, most of the days. The ship is big enough (~174 passengers) and by the end of the week, we pretty much have met most of the people. The food we had daily were outstanding and the Maitre'd and Executive Chef were being seen all the time, making sure everyone is taken care of and if the food is okay, etc.. They are very personable and friendly. The wait staff were on their toes and very efficient. Every time I turned around the water or wine has been refilled without my noticing. The shore excursions were excellent and pretty much covered the highlights of each port and yet gave us some leisure time. The entertainment in the evening was so-so. Had a couple of locals do some entertainment, but due to some people in attendance, that came as a group, were a little bit too loud, so we cannot hear the entertainment. That was the only thing a little annoying and causes a minor confrontation too with other passengers. All0in-all, I had a great time and will be back again. The Viking Longship is the way to go. I would like to try the new Viking Ocean Cruise soon. Keep up the good work!!! Read Less
Sail Date April 2016
The trip was really two parts- booking and then the cruise itself. Booking and customer service after booking was awful. Everything got screwed up: names, air deviation schedule, beginning port, all took more time than they should have ... Read More
The trip was really two parts- booking and then the cruise itself. Booking and customer service after booking was awful. Everything got screwed up: names, air deviation schedule, beginning port, all took more time than they should have to correct. Agents were almost to a person, unhelpful. Principal complaint was when we booked air deviation for Marseilles planning to arrive three days early with my daughter who would not be on the cruise. We planned on staying in Marseilles and meeting the tour on sailing day at the airport as we took our daughter for her homeward flight. Late in the game we were told no transfers although we paid extra for deviation. Cruise line stated it was policy. Off to a poor start. We were upgraded to the Columbus Suite which was great. Few details: TV worked only for music, but not a problem. Overall service on the ship was very good and they generally accommodated my wife's special needs. Food was good but about like other river lines. On board activities were limited because of tours but evenings had several entertaining performers. Public areas were the Peppermint Lounge forward and the small Captain's Lounge off the stern. Very little service there. Frankly, I found the itinerary and passing scenery pretty boring. We loved Avignon where I was an 18-year-old GI in 1946, and also Lyon. But passing scenery was very industrial and lots of nuclear plants we were told. We took only two tours, not realizing the tours were mostly pretty strenuous, but those tours were excellent with a high point an organ concert in an old medieval cathedral. Our air arrangements were adequate with two stops and short connection times but we managed with wheelchair pushers who knew the shortcuts. Having sailed on 4 Viking river cruises and one AMA, I would rate Vantage below those two, primarily because of the initial attitude of customer service. Another factor didn't bother us, but a number of cabins, even suites had no hot water on the whole trip, and it was the first trip of the season. Also, tips are deducted and are 20 Euros p/p, which was too high. Read Less
Sail Date March 2016

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