Sail Date: April 2016
I enjoyed being on the boat, watching the scenery go by and falling to sleep with the movement. Almost everything else was a bust. Being an experienced traveler, I understand and expect that I will be required to suck up some inconviences ... Read More
I enjoyed being on the boat, watching the scenery go by and falling to sleep with the movement. Almost everything else was a bust. Being an experienced traveler, I understand and expect that I will be required to suck up some inconviences and disapointments on a vacation, but when this is true everyday in some way or another, there is a problem. I am an avid gardener and cook. One reason I like to go to Europe is for the very quality of the food. The cruise food was good for breakfast and that spread was incredible. I can't say as much for the other meals. I would say, if you like Applebees, you will probably enjoy this cruise food. I know from experience that I get thirsty when I eat processed foods and I was very thirsty after eating the cruise meals. One meal was particularly disappointing. As we were approaching Budapest, the Hungarian chief prepared what was called goulash. What was served was chips of beef covered in a sauce. Hungarian goulash is a soup. The cruise included free beer and wine with the meals. These were poured from Viking labeled bottles. These products were clearly inferior. While it was, initially, just another "suck it up" irritation, it became truely abnoxious as we traveled through Germany and sampled some of the world's best beers when we were off the ship. I am not a heavy drinker, and Viking only found cost savings in my case on a single serving of beer per day. For what we paid for the trip, that was unreasonable. The outtings were short. Each excursion involved assembly in the parking lot and ussually a bus trip of 30 minutes to 2 hours. When the assembly started at 9 or ten, and concluded by getting us back on the ship by four, the tours you see pictured in the brochures are often as short as one hour. The guided tours are of mixed quality, rangeing from inciteful, fun and highly educational to a complete waste of expensive travel time. Be prepared that tips are expected everywhere on this "all inclusive" trip, including the tour guides. My most serious complaint was with the double docking. In many ports, especially in Germany, Viking only used one slip for as many as three ships, connecting the ships sideways. If you are paying extra for a balcony, it is a complete waste when this happens. The side of the ship with the most exclusive staterooms is always in the outside, but even those may be locked in when they connect three boats. You pass through the boat on the dock side, and several times the stench on that boat was bad. It was some combination of mildew and sewage. I found it very claustrophobic, but it also is a safety hazzard. There is no way off the boat through the window, only the single route though the stateroom door, then down the hall. I'm not sure how that even passes safety regulations. It would be a deathtrap in a fire and would never be allowed for a hotel or apartment. You end up spending evenings socializing with your shipmates. Every dinner you are seared at tables of 6 and 8 travelers, followed by cocktail parties in the lounge, where alcohol is additional, and is charged to your room. This can get tedious or worse. You have to feel your way around all the lifestyle, political and religious issues Americans feel so strongly about. Affluent, older, Christian, conservatives are going to find themselves most suited to this socializing. Overall, I'm glad to have gone, but we spent A LOT of money on this, and I would say it was a very poor value. We were given vouchers to apply toward a future cruise, but we chose to take half the value in cash. We might try a National Geographic cruise, but not Viking again. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2016
We are not experienced cruisers, early 60's. This was our first river cruise and had been on one Caribbean cruise. We knew people who had cruised Viking, some multiple times. We heard only good so we booked Basel to Amsterdam with ... Read More
We are not experienced cruisers, early 60's. This was our first river cruise and had been on one Caribbean cruise. We knew people who had cruised Viking, some multiple times. We heard only good so we booked Basel to Amsterdam with extensions in both cities. Viking takes very good care of you in all manners of transportation, connections and when on extensions. The Egil is a new ship. We were the second cruise. The rooms are typical. Small but nice. Efficient bathroom. The staff did a superb job of freshening the room unobtrusively. We opted for a balcony/veranda. Nice, but we got little use of it. Either too cold or we were docked against another ship. Save a few bucks and pass. I'm not a foodie. Meat and potatoes. I found the food good but not a reason to take the cruise. Others raved about the food. You won't go hungry. But if that's your thing, keep looking, IMHO. At lunch and dinner wine or beer is include. All you can drink. The Lounge became a second home. Nice, all windows. Casual. They don't try to screw you too bad on drink prices (wine- 6 euros or so, mixed drinks (manhattans)- 9). Nobody is searching your bags if you want to bring something on board. Daily (almost) tours are included. Always in the morning then time to explore on your own. All ranged from very good to excellent. Guides were generally entertaining and knowledgeable. Our guide in Cologne was a hands down expert on the cathedral. Knew everything and more. Optional tours are available ($50-75/person?). Most not interesting to us but we did go to some 1300's village that was great. We had a total of 177 passengers. I'd say we were about average age (early 60's). Almost no "young" (under 50) people, Zero kids.The other passengers were great. We pal-ed up with several different wonderful groups/couples that added greatly to the experience. All walks of life, all terrific. The small ship experience is terrific. You bump into the same people over and over. I don't think I'll ever do a big ship again. The management and staff were all great. After the first day they delivered my manhattan and wifes white wine as soon as they saw us in the lounge. I would not classify this as "luxury". Just good, solid, well done mid class experience. We will cruise Viking again. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2016
Best Vacation We have ever taken! There are not enough adjectives to describe how wonderful EVERYTHING was! Our first cruise of any sort. The ship and itinerary appealed to us. Every part of the trip was above our expectations. The ... Read More
Best Vacation We have ever taken! There are not enough adjectives to describe how wonderful EVERYTHING was! Our first cruise of any sort. The ship and itinerary appealed to us. Every part of the trip was above our expectations. The food, ship, staff and off ship tours were amazing. The passengers were all mature...mostly above 50. No children...they would have been bored. We met many new people, mostly American and Canadian, with a few Brits thrown in. The staff was a little more diverse but all spoke excellent English and all had a great sense of humor. The ship was new only second cruise,pristine. The cabin and bath were beautiful. The bed was large and very comfortable. Great sleeping. We wondered about the motion of the ship being an issue but we could barely feel any movement at all. Food was plentiful and wonderful. Meals were a treat and never hurried. Tours and guides were Excellent. Best Vacation We have ever taken! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2016
We were on the ship EGIL. We were cruising the Rhine River. This was my first cruise experience and I couldn't say everything more about it than it was an absolutely amazing journey. The scenery, the ports, the staff ,the meals and ... Read More
We were on the ship EGIL. We were cruising the Rhine River. This was my first cruise experience and I couldn't say everything more about it than it was an absolutely amazing journey. The scenery, the ports, the staff ,the meals and the ship .... all amazing. The staff made everything about my trip very easy going, entertaining, comfortable and worry free. The staterooms are very nice size, everything you need and they have a very caring cleaning staff. Everyone went above and beyond on the ship, you had no reason to worry. The food is delicious and the food staff is wonderful, doing everything they could to make meals very pleasing. The food was fresh and had a lot of thought on being good for you. The shore excursions were fun and the tour guides made history telling a little more fun with their stories and facts. When we could, we found time to go shopping and stroll around the villages. The sites were amazing, they made great choices on ports and the guided tours. The ship had on board entertainment with singers, glass blower and other local demonstrations on food and drinks. The only bit of info that we did not know was that we should have planned two extra days. One upon arrival because we didn't embark the ship at 5pm. We missed the happenings of that day. Day two would be for the last day of the trip. We arrived in Amsterdam only to go to the airport. The ship was helping people with car and hotel arrangements to se the sights in Amsterdam. Now we know. I would definitely river cruise again and if they treat everyone, all the time, the way they pampered us on our cruise, I will recommend Viking to everyone. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2016
I chose this cruise because I could see tulips, windmills, castles, and the Swiss Alps all on one trip. I id that with extensions before and after the cruise. While on the cruise, the crew was attentive, listened to my requests, ... Read More
I chose this cruise because I could see tulips, windmills, castles, and the Swiss Alps all on one trip. I id that with extensions before and after the cruise. While on the cruise, the crew was attentive, listened to my requests, remembered my desires, and waited on me like a queen. The bedding was perfect, even the pillows, and I have muscles that get cramped away from my own bed..We made friends with passengers and staff, both of whom we have remained in contact. As two around-80 women, we were the ship's mascots and well cared for. And oh, yes, the food was wonderful too. I liked that information was provided about the areas we were visiting and not just provided just for entertainment alone. Several times there was singing or musical perfermances that were enjoyable but again they were pertinent to the area. The shore excursions were diversified and interesting with well-thought out alternatives. Since I was slower on a cane, groups were organized for those of us who were not as fast as most passengers. We still saw the most important parts of the shore excursions at a more leisurely pace. Twice; in port, we hired taxis to take us through small towns and the staff was helpful in directly them where to take us. Also helpful in arranging for a hair appointment in port. My friend and I found the river cruise so enjoyable that we are looking forward to a Viking Ocean Cruise in a month. Read Less
Sail Date: April 2016
Vacation of a lifetime, for a special birthday. Spent 2 days in Amsterdam, staying at the Moevenpick in the 2 day pre-cruise package. The packaged tour was informative with at top-notch local guide. We were impressed with all of the tour ... Read More
Vacation of a lifetime, for a special birthday. Spent 2 days in Amsterdam, staying at the Moevenpick in the 2 day pre-cruise package. The packaged tour was informative with at top-notch local guide. We were impressed with all of the tour guides throughout the cruise. The cruise itself went by too quickly and each stop provided a good sampling of highlights--always much more to do than we had time for at each stop. One thing that's import is that all the docking locations were primo. The crew, dining and service were impeccable and first class. I would not hesitate to go on another Viking cruise. The only issue I had was that of not being able to get detailed itinerary information before leaving for the cruise. We'd plan to meet a friend in Heidelberg after work but it turns out the ship left Heidelberg for Speyer at 2, so we missed that connection. The Viking team made embarkation and disembarkation smooth and trouble-free, from the moment we stepped through customs in Amsterdam to the moment we were turned over to security check-in in Basel. The AirFrance/KLM air travel arrangements were smooth. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2016
Initially we had seen an ad on TV. The price was right and we had the time. I had also heard from friends what a great trip they had on Viking. While there were a few bumps in the road (nothing to do with Viking)....our flight was ... Read More
Initially we had seen an ad on TV. The price was right and we had the time. I had also heard from friends what a great trip they had on Viking. While there were a few bumps in the road (nothing to do with Viking)....our flight was canceled and our luggage was lost for almost the entire trip, the staff was unfailing helpful with all of it. The food was excellent, the waitstaff friendly and helpful. We enjoyed meeting a variety of people from all over and the excursions were well planned and informative. The cabin was more than adequate even though we went with an economical unit. Having only 179 passengers was a real treat having been on cruises with over 1,000 passengers! I particularly loved sitting in the lounge sailing along...it was peaceful and lovely. Overall this was fabulous trip and ;yes, we will probably do another river cruise in the future. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: April 2016
Our first cruise of any sort. The ship and itinerary appealed to us. We were not disappointed ! Every part of the trip was above our expectations. The food, ship, staff and off ship tours were amazing. We were definitely catered to! ... Read More
Our first cruise of any sort. The ship and itinerary appealed to us. We were not disappointed ! Every part of the trip was above our expectations. The food, ship, staff and off ship tours were amazing. We were definitely catered to! The passengers were all mature...mostly above 50. No children...they would have been bored. We met many new people, mostly American and Canadian, with a few Brits thrown in. The staff was a little more diverse but all spoke excellent English and all had a great sense of humor. The ship appeared to be new, practically pristine. The cabin and bath were beautiful but small by necessity. The bed was large and very comfortable. Great sleeping. We wondered about the motion of the ship being an issue but we could barely feel any movement at all. Food was plentiful and wonderful. Meals were a treat and never hurried Only dress code was for dinner in the main dining room and then it was just no jeans or shorts. The rest of the day was very casual. We took advantage of the included tours every day and spent the rest of the day just relaxing in the wonderful lounge or on the sun deck. Every day there was an optional tour offered and they sounded intriguing. We did get off the ship in a couple of towns and explore a little on our own...what a treat! We did our shopping in Cologne. Even though I hate air travel and all that hassle, we would love to do another river cruise! Read Less
Sail Date: April 2016
This cruise was an excellent, top notch experience. Cruised on the Viking Egil down the Rhine River. First cruise ever of any kind for us. We will do a Viking River Cruise again. Friendly, efficient staff giving excellent service and ... Read More
This cruise was an excellent, top notch experience. Cruised on the Viking Egil down the Rhine River. First cruise ever of any kind for us. We will do a Viking River Cruise again. Friendly, efficient staff giving excellent service and the ship was beautiful and well maintained. Had a cabin with a balcony...highly recommend that. Participated in all included excursions, but did not do any extra ones. We enjoyed having that extra time to explore locations on our after the planned outings. The food was excellent and the servers all very attentive and engaging. Appreciated the fact that beer and wine with our meals did not cost extra and the wine selection was nice and included regional wines. We really enjoyed the fact that there was an informal cafe as well as the full service dining room. We also enjoyed the coffee/water no snack bar that was always available. Evening entertainment was varied and enjoyable. We did stay several extra days at our final destination...Amsterdam....and received excellent service form the Viking representatives at the hotel there as well. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2016
We went with three other couples that had been our friends since high school. We ate together at all of our meals and consequently did not meet many new people. However, my husband and I would not hesitate to go without friends as ... Read More
We went with three other couples that had been our friends since high school. We ate together at all of our meals and consequently did not meet many new people. However, my husband and I would not hesitate to go without friends as everyone seemed very friendly and open to new acquaintances. We were impressed with how worry free this type of travel is. All of your meals are available on the ship, so there is no looking for restaurants. While in a port, all of your time and energy could go toward learning about the area. The food was excellent. There were many healthy choices and I am happy to report that I did not gain a pound. We really enjoyed the ship's crew on the Egil. Our waiters were George, Arnold and Arnold. They were excellent and greatly added to our good time. We stayed on the lowest level and the view was not as good, but we still were able to see things when we chose to. We may upgrade next time. Our rooms were kept very clean and fresh everyday. The guides were excellent. We especially enjoyed our very tall guide in Cologne, whose name I can not recall. In short, we will be cruising again with Viking. Read Less
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