137 Viking River Viking Rolf Cruise Reviews

Wanted to revisit Normandy and visit Monet's home. As always Viking is very efficient and once on-board you can relax and enjoy all the wonderful amenities! We had been traveling on our own for a couple of weeks and loving it, but ... Read More
Wanted to revisit Normandy and visit Monet's home. As always Viking is very efficient and once on-board you can relax and enjoy all the wonderful amenities! We had been traveling on our own for a couple of weeks and loving it, but walking into our room and unpacking was like coming home! Experienced Paris by letting Viking do all the planing and as always a great job. I would just caution travelers not to go during Europe's spring break time! I also think Viking should warn travelers that the crowds will be much more intense during this time. Food and service is excellent, We loved our room. It is kept spotlessly clean and equipped very well. And if you need anything it will be delivered quickly. My only complaint this trip was the nightly "oversell" by the crew. I at times felt I was listening to a timeshare presentation. Please, not every night over dinner. Keep up the great work and we are looking forward to our next Viking trip. Read Less
Sail Date April 2019
We wanted to see the Normandy battlefield and see more of Paris. We loved the smaller towns we docked at and toured. Highlights were the Normandy beaches, Monet home and grounds, and seeing Notre Dame before the fire. The food and ... Read More
We wanted to see the Normandy battlefield and see more of Paris. We loved the smaller towns we docked at and toured. Highlights were the Normandy beaches, Monet home and grounds, and seeing Notre Dame before the fire. The food and staff on board were both excellent. We appreciate the right sized food portions that let us indulge in appetizers and dessert. We went on almost every included tour and continue to be impressed with the quality of the guides. I also like the large tables in the dining room where we met a lot of fun and interesting people on board. We paid extra to set our own departure airfare and spent an extra week outside Paris and saw much more in the area including Reims Verdun and Provins which I would highly recommend We’ve enjoyed both Viking river cruises we’ve taken and are looking forward to another one. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
I did in depth research of cruise lines for guest services, itinerary and value. Viking offered the best of everything I was looking for, especially visiting Omaha Beach and Normandy in general. I particularly enjoyed Rouen, Vernon, and ... Read More
I did in depth research of cruise lines for guest services, itinerary and value. Viking offered the best of everything I was looking for, especially visiting Omaha Beach and Normandy in general. I particularly enjoyed Rouen, Vernon, and Giverny (Monet home and gardens). Viking staff greeted us on arrival at CDG airport and the transportation to our ship was effortless. Viking staff again greeted us at the ship and were escorted to our cabin and given an overview of the accommodations and services available. The Viking ship “Rolf” and it’s crew provided a very friendly and accommodating atmosphere. The cabin was extremely comfortable. The food and wines were incredible and worth the price of the trip by itself. We were provide information at the end of each day about the next day’s scheduled activities - including a description of the available tours and brief history of the places we would visit. Overall, this was the best vacation I have ever experienced and am planning another trip for late 2021. I highly recommend this particular cruise (Paris to Normandy) and the Viking cruise line. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
Cruise staff was amazing! We arrived by taxi and Viking staff took over as soon as we stepped out of the car. They immediately took our bags and welcomed us on board. Fabulous treatment from the get-go. We stayed in 301 on the Rolf, ... Read More
Cruise staff was amazing! We arrived by taxi and Viking staff took over as soon as we stepped out of the car. They immediately took our bags and welcomed us on board. Fabulous treatment from the get-go. We stayed in 301 on the Rolf, and it was an excellent location. I would absolutely request it next time. Beds were a bit lumpy. Viking should fix that. Stefi did a fabulous job keeping our room clean and orderly. We hardly ever saw her, but she took great care of us. Food was fabulous at every meal. Look to sit at Georgi's table. He is delightful and will make sure your meal is perfect. Be sure to visit the lounge and hear Chris on the piano. He is amazing. The two ladies working the front desk are so pleasant and helpful. They made arrangements for a taxi to pick us up upon disembarkation and take us to the Saint Germain-en-Laye train station for our next adventure. Cost was 20 euros plus tip for the 2 of us. Felt very safe. Easy train ride to Charles De Gaulle Airport in Paris, even with bags (just be sure you can manage them on and off the trains). The cruise director also did an amazing job!!!! He worked tirelessly to arrange the tours, keep the schedules, and coordinate communications. When Versailles closed due to the Yellow Jacket protests, the Vesailles excursion was canceled. Within hours, Viking arranged an alternate excursion to Chateau Chantilly at no expense to the passengers. Chantilly was fabulous! Kudos to Viking for going above and beyond! Travelling in December was tough because it was cold and rained almost every day. Days are short. Sunrise was around 8:30 a.m. with sunset around 4:45 p.m. Tours to Normandy Beach and the American Cemetery were rushed. We were disappointed, but that was not Viking's fault. Just the time of year. We will go back when we can have more time. Bus ride to the Normandy beaches was very long. No potty break on the way back, so be forewarned. Because of the full tour schedules, attire for dinner was casual and relaxed. Sometimes our tour bus would return just in time for dinner. Not having to get gussied up for dinner after a long day of sight-seeing was a relief. Sit at a large table and get to know folks. Dinner was a lot of fun. We got Euros before leaving USA because we didn't want to get caught without. We found that we could get euros in France from ATMs without paying the exchange fee. Cruise Director was helpful with advice on local matters such as this. Also, we bought several tour books before our trip, because we did some pre and post cruise traveling on our own. Of all the books we bought, Rick Steves' books were the best. Everything recommended in his books were spot on (and be sure to download his app). I could have eliminated the rest and saved the money. When we returned home, we wondered if we would want to try another cruise line for our next cruise. We knew we loved our Viking Cruise, but since it was our first river cruise, we wondered if there was something even better. We researched other lines and compared everything we got from Viking with what they offered. We were so impressed with what we got comparatively, that we decided to stick with Viking. Can't wait to take our next Viking cruise! Read Less
Sail Date December 2018
Concierge at the hotel for 3 days in Paris prior to embarkation was very sweet and helpful, she suggested great restaurants and sights to visit. Definitely recommend the three days in Paris before the cruise. Take the time to adjust to ... Read More
Concierge at the hotel for 3 days in Paris prior to embarkation was very sweet and helpful, she suggested great restaurants and sights to visit. Definitely recommend the three days in Paris before the cruise. Take the time to adjust to the jet lag and just enjoy some sights one on one. The crew was unbelievable on board and the staff made every effort to get to know us and make all dining fun and enjoyable. My wife has a gluten allergy, and they always had something special for her without her having to ask. I recommend the drink package upgrade, bartenders are amazing. Excursions were well planned out and breaks were planned out perfectly, you never felt overwhelmed or rushed. I was skeptical about doing this type of cruise, but we thoroughly enjoyed all aspects from rooms to service to excursions to local cuisine aboard the Rolf, we enjoyed everything so much, we have already booked our next cruise in Germany, and can not wait to go. Read Less
Sail Date December 2018
I was leafing through a catalogue of Viking River Cruises that had arrived in the mail, and noticed the description of a trip from Paris to Rouen and back. I had toured and loved Normandy as a teenager long ago, and was sure that my ... Read More
I was leafing through a catalogue of Viking River Cruises that had arrived in the mail, and noticed the description of a trip from Paris to Rouen and back. I had toured and loved Normandy as a teenager long ago, and was sure that my husband (who had never been to France before) would also find it very interesting. After seeing Viking ads on PBS for so many years, he and I agreed that this was the moment to give one of Viking's cruises a try. We felt well-cared for right from our initial phone call to book, with Viking regularly sending us useful e-mailed updates and documentation. Every moment of the trip was thoughtfully organized and well-planned. We chose a lower-deck cabin, knowing that a balcony wouldn't be a must in December weather! Our room was quiet and comfortable, with reliable WiFi. We spent most of our time elsewhere in the ship in any case, meeting fellow guests, and enjoying the lounge and scattered seating areas. The food aboard was superb, the best we've ever had on any cruise. The staff were all friendly and very helpful. We loved the evening entertainment ... as one example, I never expected to hear Delibes' Flower Duet from Lakmé, exquisitely performed by talented singers, the very first night aboard! The Rolf's own pianist was great as well; my husband and I enjoy ballroom dancing, and the pianist provided a nice variety of dance melodies. Excursions were excellent throughout. Our guides were uniformly good, and I loved the headsets provided for the tours that made it possible to hear our guides without any difficulty. Each tour brought experiences I had never in my life expected: seeing the 25,000-year-old Venus of Brassempouy at the national archaeological museum in St-Germain-en-Laye; the delightfully crookedy half-timbered houses of Vernon; Van Gogh's wind-swept grave, and the very room where he passed away; the Bayeux tapestry; white bluffs along the Seine; an isolated monument to a fallen aircraft in a field near the beautiful cemetery at Bény-sur-Mer; I could just go on and on. It was so lovely that Viking gave us each a rose to put on a soldier's grave of our choice at Bény-sur-Mer. Let me also mention a tour that Viking arranged at the last minute, when the "gilets jaunes" prompted the closing of Versailles and the cancellation of an optional tour there. Viking refunded the fee for the Versailles tour, and then offered to all passengers a complimentary tour to Chantilly instead. Kudos to our Program Director, Michael, and his staff! The Château de Chantilly and Condé Museum were a revelation and absolute delight. I can hardly wait til our next cruise with this company. And it won't be long, because we have already booked another trip :-) Read Less
Sail Date December 2018
Viking River Cruises can best be described as affordable elegance. The Longships are clean, modern, nicely furnished- and all identical. The French Balcony cabin was small, comfortable, and cozy. The food was good and meals feature local ... Read More
Viking River Cruises can best be described as affordable elegance. The Longships are clean, modern, nicely furnished- and all identical. The French Balcony cabin was small, comfortable, and cozy. The food was good and meals feature local cuisine. Viking represents a good value for the money since a tour in every port is included; and unless you are a drinker, the soft drinks, wine, and beer provided at lunch and dinner- as well as coffee, tea, and hot chocolate available 24/7- means that you can do without paying extra for a drink package. You also save money since there are no speciality restaurants- there are plenty of options available in the dining room and Aquavit Terrace. Day One: Flight to Paris with Air France DD and I were picked up at the airport by Viking, meeting up after exiting the baggage claim area, and taken to the Rolf which docks in Le Pecq, a suburb of Paris. Our cabin was ready, so we dropped off our luggage and walked about a mile to the RER and took the train to Paris. We were able to see some of the sights before returning to the ship for dinner. Our favorite place to eat onboard was the Aquavit Terrace. The same menu is used in both the Aquavit Terrace and dining room, so as we like a more relaxed, casual dining experience, we ate most of our dinners there. Peter took great care of us during the cruise, and always kept our glasses full of Coke. Day Two: Paris We skipped the Paris tour in order to go to Disneyland Paris on our own. For Disney fans, it is a must-see, but don’t expect it to be the same as Disneyland or Disney World. A worker carrying a broom and dustpan walked right by some trash without picking it up. There are designated smoking areas, however, one guy walked by smoking a cigar, others smoked cigarettes as their walked along past attractions and shops. Lots of gum littering the streets, too. However, it is Disney- and Disney is always lots of fun. Note: make sure you know when your ship is leaving for the next port. On this day, we had to leave Disneyland at 3 in order to make it back in time before the ship left Le Pecq. Day Three: Auvers-sur-Oise and Vernon Since it was December, instead of going to Claude Monet’s home and viewing his gardens, we traveled to Auvers-sur-Oise and got to see the room in which Vincent Van Goth spent the last 70 days of his life, and where he also died. We saw a moving film about his life, and then walked to the graveyard where he is buried next to his brother, Theo. In the afternoon, we went on another walking tour, this time in Vernon, and viewed many lovely half-timbered homes centuries old. Day Four: Rouen This is the town in which Joan of Arc was sentenced to death and was burned at the stake. You will visit a church built near the site of her execution, as well as Notre Dame Cathedral, a favorite subject of Claude Monet. Many more beautiful half-timbered homes can be admired while walking through the town. Day Five: Normandy Beaches We were taken on an all-day trip to a museum at Gold Beach, a lunch at Le Meridien, the Normandy American Cemetery, and Omaha Beach. Very moving experience. We were given roses to be placed on a grave of our choice at the American Cemetery. Day Six: Les Andelys Lovely little town which is easy to walk through. We took a tour to Chateau Gaillard, built in the 12th century by Richard the Lionheart. Day Seven: Le Pecq We had to skip the port of Mantes-la-Jolie due to an impending strike announced by the lock workers so that we would make it back to Le Pecq before the workers walked off the job. Due to the demonstrations by the Yellow Jackets, the Palace of Versailles was closed. A visit to Chateau Chantilly was substituted. It was so nice of Viking to go out of their way to substitute the canceled excursion with something else. Many thanks to our Program Director, Michael, for putting the excursion together. The chateau is very impressive and majestic. The horse stables seen off to the distance could be mistaken for another chateau. After a visit here, President Nixon asked why he had always been taken to Versailles before, if he had know about Chantilly he said, he would have stayed there instead during his previous visits. In the afternoon, we visited Napoleon’s Chateau de Malmaison, which, although not as impressive as Chantilly, is an elegant manor house oozing with history. We took the optional tour, Paris by Night, after dinner which was a perfect way to end our trip. Day Eight: Flight home via Delta We liked the airlines and flights chosen by Viking, and the price we paid for the flights represented a great value. Having Viking pick us up at the airport and drop us off again for our return flight meant that we had an easy, no-stress way to start and end our vacation. Fellow passengers, scheduling, and concluding thoughts The passengers are mostly in their 60s and 70s, with a few young adults traveling together or with family. Most people were happy with the service onboard, however, there are always a few complainers. One passenger was unhappy that he couldn’t order another dessert after dinner since there was no remaining food left over at the end of the meal. You can order multiple desserts- but make sure that you order everything you want at the start when your order is taken. It definitely pays to be on time for meals: for example, our French Tea started at 4:00, by 4:07, I picked up the only remaining watercress sandwich, after which, the waiter took the sign and tray away. Cleaning up started at 4:30, and two ladies arriving at 4:45 were disappointed to find that everything tea related had been cleaned up. In general, know if there is another event scheduled in the same venue shortly after yours. That means that the crew will have to clean up quickly in order to set up for the next event, so get there early. This is true no matter what type of cruise you are on- river or ocean. There are vegetarian options, but rather limited. Breakfast buffets in the dining room offered the best options for vegetarians to enjoy a good meal, so make sure you eat a hearty breakfast. Also, enjoy some of the local options- the bakeries are wonderful! Make sure that you check when the ship is due to sail. Always pick up your disembarkation cards before leaving the ship so that the front desk knows that you are not onboard and won’t sail off without you, hopefully. Pick up a card which has the ship’s current location printed on it so that you can give this card to a taxi if you should get lost or are pressed for time while returning to the ship. The cabins have a fridge so you can buy your own beverages if you want to. You will receive two Cokes waiting for you the first day, along with bottles of water (replenished daily). Keep lots of Euros handy to use to tip your tour guides and drivers. All of the tours were wonderful. We enjoyed all of them very much and learned so much about the people and places related to each tour. The guides all did a fabulous job. The tours are tailored according to physical ability. There was always an easy walk option for people with mobility issues. We were always warned by our program director as to whether an excursion would be physically challenging or not. The tour guides always told us how to get back to the ship and ended the tour in a shopping district. Get your shop on! This was my first Viking cruise and I have already booked my next Viking cruise. Can’t wait. Read Less
Sail Date December 2018
Since we were on this cruise 6 years ago on one of the smaller ships we thought we would try it again. We stayed on our own in Paris for three days with another couple. Took a cab to Le Pecq, which only cost 44 euro. Le Pecq was a nice ... Read More
Since we were on this cruise 6 years ago on one of the smaller ships we thought we would try it again. We stayed on our own in Paris for three days with another couple. Took a cab to Le Pecq, which only cost 44 euro. Le Pecq was a nice surprise. A Mono Prix store was right across the street from the ship for any items you may have forgotten, a full grocery, clothes, toiletries etc. Up the hill is St. Germaine en Laye, lovely town. Easy to walk to or back, but need to use quite a bit of stairs. They had a small but nice Christmas Market. The Rolf is the same long ships that we have been accustomed to, comfortable and easy to navigate. The Chef, Restaurant manager were excellent, both from Greece. The restaurant staff was excellent too! We were able to take the Normandy Beaches Commonwealth tour and it was fabulous. We had done the US tour 6 years ago. We saw the Bayeaux Tapestry and that in itself was amazing and so was the town of Bayeaux. The Canadian museum was touching especially the movie at the end, all staffed by young Canadians. Our guide was a professor at the University and he was very, very good. In all another great Viking cruise, next year the Duoro! Read Less
Sail Date December 2018
7 days, Good destinations. Normandy was incredibly worth going to. The only big disappointment was the 3 hour bus tour in Paris. I had expected to be able to stop more often for photo opportunities - not just the Eiffel Tower. The ... Read More
7 days, Good destinations. Normandy was incredibly worth going to. The only big disappointment was the 3 hour bus tour in Paris. I had expected to be able to stop more often for photo opportunities - not just the Eiffel Tower. The staff on board were superb. The program director was marvelous. Everyone really seemed to care about our journey. It was December and cold, and whenever we returned to the boat from an outing, the crew welcomed us with hot soup or cider or something like that. They provided bottled water constantly when we got off the boat. Some of the local guides were hard to understand (dialects) but some were excellent. I was very disappointed that we did not get to stop at the artist Monet home and gardens, as they said it was closed. There was one experience that was superb. At one of the shore excursions we went into a small art gallery. I wanted to buy a small piece of art, but the gallery owners spoke no English. We rushed back to the ship with the telephone number of the artist, and I asked if someone could possibly call the artist to be sure we were understanding one another. The wonderful gal concierge said yes. The captain of the boat was standing nearby, so she asked him! The Captain called the artist, we understood everything, and returned to purchase the art. Now THAT was something very special, and sets the tone for the rest of the staff. The onboard experience was simply lovely. The longboard do not have fitness, no children under 18, specialties or entertainment, other than a pianist who played from time to time during cocktail hour. The lounge was a very comfortable place to socialize or read or just enjoy being. The daily briefings were well done and extremely helpful. Read Less
Sail Date December 2018
Viking came very highly recommended by very dear friends. I was not disappointed for one second..we did a pre trip extension & it was wonderful. Our flight was on Air France & took off without a hitch. Arrived in Paris & we ... Read More
Viking came very highly recommended by very dear friends. I was not disappointed for one second..we did a pre trip extension & it was wonderful. Our flight was on Air France & took off without a hitch. Arrived in Paris & we were greeted & escorted to hotel. Le Meridian Hotel way perfectly located in heart of Paris. We walked the streets & felt very safe. At one point I looked up & there was Arch de triumph! Couldn’t believe we were actually in Paris and walking the same streets as Audrey Hepburn. We took tour through Viking & went to Momartre & Notre Damn (please excuse my spelling) it was like heaven...all the artists, flowers, shops...This is where u should shop. If u see anything that strikes your fancy...buy it! Our 3 days in hotel were fabulous. We even rode Metro which was easy as pie...and I have no sense of direction. We met 2 couples that we would continue on river cruise with & I think we might be friends forever! We ate at local restaurants. Food, breads, wines, fish, cheeses & service was wonderful. Waiters were accommodating & fun. They bent head over heals to make us happy campers! Then it was on to ship...I have no words to describe how beautiful this was. We had a standard room. I was afraid of size...but it all worked out. Room was very efficiently arranged & lovely. Beautiful decor on ship & room. Very clean. Room was stocked w many amenities & efficiently serviced twice a day. If we needed anything we called & it was delivered in seconds. They didn’t know what to do first for us. These river boats are not huge & very easy to get around. Our room was right off concierge desk. So we just walked out of our room & up stairs to restaurant. (I think). Anyway you cannot get lost & it’s very easy. By the end of trip we knew practically everyone on board. everyone was so friendly. Staff always greeted us w big smiles, were so courteous & accommodating. The food was amazing. All meals were so elegantly served. For breakfast, lunch & dinner we felt as if everything was being prepared for us individually...the waiters remembered our preferences exactly. We had perfect meats, steakes, veal, pork, poultry, fish. Fresh vegetables..pasta, sauces, cheeses, wines breads. The desserts were excellent, pies, cakes, ice creams Then all the tours...with the expertise of the tour guides we were taken on a dream come true. They explained details in such interesting ways. We were taken through the Lourve in a dream come true of alll the masterpieces. Unbelievable to see all these indescribable works of art up close & personal w stories behind the scenes of how they were created. Then at the end to see Mona Lisa in all her humble glory. Will neve4 forget this—as little as she is! We docked in a town where u could have taken a tour to Versailles. We opted out of this tour & instead walked into the town where we were docked. Well, this was such a sweet stop for us because we felt like we were getting a true taste of France. It was a short walk from ship. There were amazing cute shops, outdoor vegetable, fruit, meat, cheese, fish & bread stands. No supermarkets! Beautiful flower stands. Buy a little of this & some of that...just enough...the French way. It was a great way to get a real taste of France. We went to Richard the Lionhearted castle & town of Gailliard. Beautiful countryside landscaping. The town was so charming, beautiful church, cute shops, coffee shops, pubs. Cobblestone streets. Monet’s home/town was so beautiful. I couldn’t believe that the scenery we were in the middle of was actually his masterpieces. The lily ponds, the flowers, the trees, the pond, the little row boat. I had seen it all before on canvas but now I was really seeing it through Monets eyes. Our guide was precious. She was an environmentalist & knew all the flowers, trees, bushes etc by name. His house was so beautiful & every window situated w a view so he could paint. So many paintings—Too many to count. Cute strore to shop for souvenirs and gifts. Then to Normandy. Learned so much about invasion. How it came about. What France experienced w the invasion. Sacrifices that were made by families that had to host Germans. Our guide in Normandy had ancestors that were forced to accommodate German officers & what the family had to endure for 4 years. So real...to see the bunkers, bullet holes in walls. How they built a port for ships to dock & then actual invasion. So many young lives lost, but for a victory on foreign shores. Quite an emotional experience we will n3ver forget. We had no idea we would experience so much emotion... After each day of touring we were greeted by crew & Captain and offered wine, cocktails, & cheeses and then a delicious dinner. Food service was very elegant & comfortable...meaning that after a day of amazing tours we could relax, be served a perfect dinner with fabulous wines & all the trimmings of very special dinner. The staff was constantly there for us. They couldn’t do enough for us and we always felt very cared for & protected. You know sometimes when you are in a foreign country you might feel insecure. But not with Viking. They are there for you 24/7!!! I loved this Viking cruise. In fact we have booked another in 2020 to Greece! Bon voyage❤️ Read Less
Sail Date December 2018
I enjoyed the cruise very much. Even with the rioting in Paris, Viking kept everyone safe and comprimised with excursions to everyone’s satisfaction. Staff was wonderful,as was all the excursions they offered. The ceremony at Normandy ... Read More
I enjoyed the cruise very much. Even with the rioting in Paris, Viking kept everyone safe and comprimised with excursions to everyone’s satisfaction. Staff was wonderful,as was all the excursions they offered. The ceremony at Normandy Beach was very moving. I don’t have any negative comments to give about this cruise. The ports and all the sights were very enjoyable. The ship was very clean and laid out very well. The food served was excellent. The embarkation and disembarkation all was very smooth, and handled very well by the ship staff. I have sailed Viking before and have two additional cruises booked right now. I would very highly recommend Viking to anyone and everyone. I recommend both the river cruises as well as the ocean cruises. The service and ports of call are all well thought out and are offered at no cost in most instances, also the free WiFi and the beverages offered for no additional cost at meal times is a great plus. Read Less
Sail Date December 2018
We sailed on two Uniworld cruises prior to our first Viking River Cruise. The itinerary and date on the Viking Rolf matched what we were looking for to celebrate our 25th Anniversary. The only low point was that several excursions ... Read More
We sailed on two Uniworld cruises prior to our first Viking River Cruise. The itinerary and date on the Viking Rolf matched what we were looking for to celebrate our 25th Anniversary. The only low point was that several excursions were cancelled, including Versailles, due to the riots in Paris. Most attractions were closed during the organized demonstrations on the weekends in December. Highlights of this Cruise were: Touring all the sights with no Summer crowds; Normandy, Vernon, Rouen; Cruise Director Michael Brightman — hIs genuine enthusiasm for this area of France is contagious; Meeting great people! The best part was the post-excursion to The Loire Valley — a must do! We ended up having a “semi-private” tour of this wonderful area. There are no words to describe Château de Chenonceau at Christmas! Thank you Viking Rolf for your attention to detail, outstanding service, and making this an extra special trip! Read Less
Sail Date December 2018
We saw Viking advertisements while watching Downtown abbey on PBS. We felt it best served our needs to the countries we wanted to see and they had wonderful food and excursion choices. We absolutely had a fantastic time. Our cruise ... Read More
We saw Viking advertisements while watching Downtown abbey on PBS. We felt it best served our needs to the countries we wanted to see and they had wonderful food and excursion choices. We absolutely had a fantastic time. Our cruise director, chefs etc were amazing!!! They were so kind!! The small things they did really impressed me! When arriving back from an excursion they offered hot lemon towels and hot broth or juice! I thought that was just a special touch! The food was absolutely amazing. We had a chef helping on our cruise I believe from Serbia and he would recommend certain dishes each night that we always tried and they were amazing! Along with a special thanksgiving dinner as well!! The accommodations were amazing, the captain and crew were amazing. Loved Bea, Mia, martins , the captain and all of them!!!!! We are planning on another cruise in the fall!! Thanks for the wonderful experience!!!! Read Less
Sail Date November 2018
I absolutely would recommend Viking to anyone. This cruise was spectacular. We had the large cabin, not sure i would go that big again, you really don't spend that much time in your room so you really don't need it. Gia our ... Read More
I absolutely would recommend Viking to anyone. This cruise was spectacular. We had the large cabin, not sure i would go that big again, you really don't spend that much time in your room so you really don't need it. Gia our cruise director was fantastic. The only problem that we had was we were supposed to get early access to our cabin but we were one of the last people to get their cabins. Also when we got to the airport we didn't have a viking rep to help us through the airport and our driver dropped us at the wrong place. The food was excellent the excursions were great. We did miss one of our ports because of the yellow jacket protests. We will most certainly do a viking again. Another thing that was really cool about this cruise was there was a bunch of different age groups. Read Less
Sail Date November 2018
We have friends that have sailed on Viking and gave us rave reviews and boy they were not kidding. The service, the cruise, the excursions and especially the staff were excellent. Food is my biggest concern especially when away for seven ... Read More
We have friends that have sailed on Viking and gave us rave reviews and boy they were not kidding. The service, the cruise, the excursions and especially the staff were excellent. Food is my biggest concern especially when away for seven days. I was very happy with the food on this boat, there was a huge selection at every meal and the staff was the most accommodating that I have ever experienced and we have stayed at some very nice places. I would also like to comment on the excursions as the staff on board the buses as well as the bus drivers were excellent. I was very impressed with this trip and would highly recommend Viking to anyone who has high standards in a vacation trip and I have been known as a tough critic. I am not, I simply think you should get a true value for the money you spend and this one hit the mark. Read Less
Sail Date November 2018
As with most people, we wanted to visit Normandy. Viking delivered on that. As far as comparing it to an ocean cruise there is no way. They are two different things completely. The crew was great. The ship was clean, and the rooms were ... Read More
As with most people, we wanted to visit Normandy. Viking delivered on that. As far as comparing it to an ocean cruise there is no way. They are two different things completely. The crew was great. The ship was clean, and the rooms were quite large enough. I was surprised at the casualness of the whole trip. Embarkation-Just walked in sort of like a hotel. And you just walked on and off any time the ship was docked. I. Could have stepped out my balcony on to the dock. Seating is open-we dined with our friends and some others that we met on board. Food-Cooked and delivered to precision. Entertainment-none at all except a pretty good piano player. Excursions-Most were walking but one was a panoramic of Paris. We went in November The good -the leaves were all changing. By the end of the trip you see end up seeing just about everybody on board. Mostly seasoned citizens on board,mostly American-I fit into both categories The not so good-it was cold so we could not do much on the balcony or view from the top deck. Sept would probaby be better. It snowed the next week. Special note-If you plan to visit Monet's gardens,-the gardens close at the first of November an a lot of people were upset with that. Pick another month. My wish would be that the ship dock in Paris and not 15 miles away. Don't know the reason, but it would make the experience much better. We came to Paris on our own for several days and were able to attend the 100th anniversary of the end of WWI. That was special. The visit to the cemetery at. Omaha beach was very moving and something everybody should do Since you asked-I actually prefer ocean cruises and am sailing to Norway to see the Northern lights on the Viking Sun. But we may take another Viking river cruise again. I felt I got my money's worth on this one. Read Less
Sail Date November 2018
It was on our bucket list and appealed to us on so many levels :-Historic(and different periods of history):- we learned on boat and then saw sites related to Joan of Arc, learned about the French Revolution and then of course, Dday ... Read More
It was on our bucket list and appealed to us on so many levels :-Historic(and different periods of history):- we learned on boat and then saw sites related to Joan of Arc, learned about the French Revolution and then of course, Dday visiting the beaches of Normandy Art & Cultural- saw the Tapestry of Bayeux(which is unbelieveable in it's detail and story-telling); sampled many many local cheeses; learned that cheeses served in France are unpasteurized while anything exported to North America has to be pasteurized; Monet's garden at Givenchy-another highlight. It's amazing to visit places which artists have immortalized on canvas Every port excursion and disembarkation was so organized-nothing seems to be left to chance. It takes the stress out of travelling-it seems as if all our needs, wants are identified and provided for. All guides used in ports were excellent! The staff are only too eager to provide assistance and deal with any concerns that might arise On ship we toured the wheelhouse with the captain, enjoyed a cooking demonstration, a French lesson, were able to do laps on top of the boat, watch our boat going through locks and enjoy music by various musical groups in the evening. The food was good and plentiful -the dining room can get noisy at times which makes it difficult to hear when sitting at long tables. There was 1 themed buffet where the staff all dressed in traditional costumes-it was very chaotic and the lines were long-it really wasn't as enjoyable as it could have been(On our next cruise, we had the option of having our waiter bring us a sample plate instead of lining up, which was much better in my opinion) Our room held no surprises-was clean. And of course there was Paris. We had added onto our trip and spent 5 days there beforehand (but not through Viking). You would need to add on extra days to get a good 'feel' for Paris. I would have like to have known in detail the exact itinerary of our included Panoramic tour of Paris but was not able to find out. Read Less
Sail Date November 2018
Since I was very young I wanted to visit Paris and the Normandy beaches, then Viking gave me the opportunity. We had a previous Viking River Cruise and thought Viking could not top that trip but the Paris-Normandy was equal or better. The ... Read More
Since I was very young I wanted to visit Paris and the Normandy beaches, then Viking gave me the opportunity. We had a previous Viking River Cruise and thought Viking could not top that trip but the Paris-Normandy was equal or better. The trip was a combination of a great customer service, a modern, clean facilities, World-class tours and tour guides, and the best menu and food served the way each passenger wanted. The crew, especially the dining staff, quickly become friends instead of servers. The person that takes care of your room greets you each day with a smile and when you return you have a room that is clean and comfortable. The chef and his staff went out of their way in proving good food but a great dining experience. Highlight of all cruise are the tours. We had tour guides that spoke English, were very knowledgeable at each site, and always pleasant when answering questions. The other members of the staff were exceptional as well. Again we had a great time and it was hard to leave the boat. We are already planning our next Viking River Cruise and cannot wait for our adventure to begin. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
We were able to add three days in Paris before we boarded. There were activities available to us through Viking for those days - very nice! The ship was elegant, uncluttered. The cabin looked small but lived large. There were spaces ... Read More
We were able to add three days in Paris before we boarded. There were activities available to us through Viking for those days - very nice! The ship was elegant, uncluttered. The cabin looked small but lived large. There were spaces imaginatively carved out of seemingly no room. The food was very good: breakfast was standard buffet, dinner was delightful. Each wine was chosen for the menu and I was not accustomed to such excellent pairings. The service was prompt and cheerful. The included shore excursions had a lot of medieval half timber buildings, and at least one church (always named Notre Dame, which I didn't know was standard in France). The tour guides were particularly good in the churches. Other than Normandy and the beaches, the churches were our favorite part. My husband and I traveled by ourselves yet never lacked for good company among the other passengers. The one thing I would like to have more of is cruising during daylight hours. We loved sitting on our balcony in the crisp air watching castles, churches, and fall colors. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
We chose this cruise mostly for the itinerary, and because we had such a great time on Viking's "Grand European". This was the first leg of "France's Finest" for us. While the trip was enjoyable, I ... Read More
We chose this cruise mostly for the itinerary, and because we had such a great time on Viking's "Grand European". This was the first leg of "France's Finest" for us. While the trip was enjoyable, I wasn't impressed with some of the included excursions. I think I've toured enough churches, castle ruins and palaces to last the remainder of my life! There wasn't enough free time at some of the ports. Favorite stops were Giverny; Rouen; and the beaches at Normandy, but there was not nearly enough time at the D-Day Museum. I would love to return to that area at a more leisurely pace. The food on the Rolf was good, but not memorable. I found the Program Director to be overbearing, sometimes to the point of being annoying. The majority of fellow passengers were older (we are in our early 60s). Our pre-cruise extension in Paris was delightful. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
My husband and I chose this cruise because he always wanted to go to Normandy to visit his uncle's grave. Normandy, Omaha Beach and the American Military Cemetery was emotional and very rewarding. The special ceremony they perform ... Read More
My husband and I chose this cruise because he always wanted to go to Normandy to visit his uncle's grave. Normandy, Omaha Beach and the American Military Cemetery was emotional and very rewarding. The special ceremony they perform for family members was wonderful and very appreciated. The cruise and staff were wonderful! Everything was perfect and you could tell the staff like their jobs. This was our first visit to Paris....amazing! Also this was our first river cruise and we fell in love! It was delightful watching the beautiful French countryside go by. We enjoyed all our meals, meeting new friends, and being served by an amazing staff. All of our excursions were well planned and the tour guides and bus drivers were wonderful. When we booked our cruise there were only 2 staterooms left. Although small our room was very neat and clean. We certainly would consider sailing with Viking River Cruises again. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
As past travelers with Viking we expected and received the best treatment. This trip we did the pre-extension in Paris which allowed us to see so many more local sites before our cruise began. Thus, more time to experience the great ... Read More
As past travelers with Viking we expected and received the best treatment. This trip we did the pre-extension in Paris which allowed us to see so many more local sites before our cruise began. Thus, more time to experience the great "City of Lights". From the Eiffel tower, Notre Dame, St. Chapelle, Montamare Hill's Sacre-Coeur Basilica and too many more to mentioned. When we travel we try to take in as many sites as time will allow. Once onboard the staff, as experienced in the past, were always courteous and personable. The shore excursions are always a hi-light and we always try to take in the majority The local guides are always knowledgeable which helps to enrich the experience. The food on the Rolf was great in all respects, but my absolute favorite this trip were the Black Mussels. one word, Fabulous. Again, we were blessed to have met some wonderful new acquaintances, thanks to the small ship atmosphere. Just so I don't miss this the embarkation and disembarkation went extremely smooth. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
We chose this cruise primarily for the itinerary, especially Normandy and Paris. We frequently cruise on Celebrity, Princess and Carnival but wanted to try a river cruise. It will be our last river cruise. For one thing, our room ... Read More
We chose this cruise primarily for the itinerary, especially Normandy and Paris. We frequently cruise on Celebrity, Princess and Carnival but wanted to try a river cruise. It will be our last river cruise. For one thing, our room was incredibly small, with no room to pass between the bed and the dresser area. And we are not large people. We discovered that French Veranda means no veranda. Only a sliding door. At booking, I was told it was the only room left. That was interesting because we met another couple at dinner who said they had just gotten the last remaining room a few days before sailing. Worse than the size was the very loud rattling of the light housing above the entrance area of the room when the engine was running. We have a sound machine but could not turn it up loud enough to cover the rattling sound which kept us awake if the ship was moving. We complained six or seven times to the front desk, first by phone and then in person. After getting no response, my wife recorded the rattling on her phone and took it down to the front desk. Several hours later, a service man appeared, agreed it was a bad rattle, and left. That was the extent of it. We had to live with it the rest of the cruise. To make matters worse, I had called Viking prior to our trip and simply asked if there was any discount on future cruises if we booked during the cruise like other cruise lines. The agent said there was not, but if I would book right then, I could contact him after we sailed and get a $200 pp discount as previous customer. So I signed us up for a China cruise and bought the trip insurance. Because of our bad experience, I called and cancelled the China trip, with the assurance that since we were more than 210 days out from that sailing, I would only have to pay $100 pp penalty. However, they said I will have to pay more than $1,200 penalty because I have to pay for the insurance. I did not authorize them to activate the insurance since I had more than 90 days to cancel. It appears they will now be paid twice for this room on this cruise while I, living on a fixed income, will be out more than $1,200. If I had not given in to the pressure to sign up before the cruise (I told the agent we wanted to see if we liked it before signing up for another) I would not be out more than $1,200!! I realize I can forward this amount to another Viking cruise, but considering our experience, I just want to be rid of them. The food was generally good, but limited selections and availability if you're used to large cruise liners. Excursions were mostly good and with only one exception, were included in the cost of the cruise. The program director, Mimi, was very good and a hard worker. The extent of the entertainment was very limited television in the room and a pianist in the lounge. Read Less
Sail Date August 2018
After having many friends sing the praises of Viking, we scheduled our first river cruise with them. From the moment we landed at the airport to time we boarded the flight to come home we were treat to first class service. We were blown ... Read More
After having many friends sing the praises of Viking, we scheduled our first river cruise with them. From the moment we landed at the airport to time we boarded the flight to come home we were treat to first class service. We were blown away with the way we were pampered. From the housekeeping to the food service, we had never experienced such service. The daily excursions were excellent, every detail was obviously improved based on guest feedback. The itineraries were structured to maximize our time with the highlights. The daily briefing by the Cruise Director prepared us for the following day. One example was informing us of what we would see on the beaches of Normandy. She explained the beaches would be populated with French vacationers, which many thought was disrespectful...until she explained that the French government surveyed the people who fought there and all indicated they wanted people to enjoy the beaches, that’s what they fought for. Viking listens! We were so impressed, that after being home less than a week we booked our 2019 cruise to Switzerland and Germany.308 Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
Our family, of four, wanted to take a special trip to celebrate our high school senior's graduation. She chose France. As a senior citizen I wanted a relaxing tour, yet one which included the famous monuments, museums, and palaces. ... Read More
Our family, of four, wanted to take a special trip to celebrate our high school senior's graduation. She chose France. As a senior citizen I wanted a relaxing tour, yet one which included the famous monuments, museums, and palaces. We found the perfect combination in the Paris-Normandy Viking River Cruise. We took the extended cruise and spent three days in Paris, visiting the special attractions in The City of Light. By chance we were there on Bastille Day and the day France won the World Cup! When we boarded the Rolf, we were delighted to find our ship and cabins to be just what we needed: immaculately clean, comfortable and with adequate storage space. We enjoyed eating in the lovely dining-room and on the more casual aquavit terrace It was fun to experience delicious new foods and delicacies while watching the shore roll by. We had cautioned our teen that she might be the only young person on the ship, but were amazed to find many of high school and college age on board. The activities and excursions were outstanding. I appreciated that while the younger members of the family could go on those that required more energy and endurance I could chose those that were easier or even remain on the ship with friends. Surprisingly, one of the excursions I enjoyed the most and will always remember was to the Monet Gardens. They were absolutely gorgeous. Normandy, Omaha Beach and the American Military Cemetery were very meaningful for each of us, but especially to me, since I was a child during WWII. The entire trip was definitely beyond expectations. I have been recommending Viking to all my friends. Our family would love to go on another river cruise and have even been discussing it. Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
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