This was our first experience with Viking River Cruises. We were to set sail from Melink on the Viking Astrild. Unfortunatley we were notified that we would not be sailing at all as the River Elbe was to low. We were notified of this on ... Read More
This was our first experience with Viking River Cruises. We were to set sail from Melink on the Viking Astrild. Unfortunatley we were notified that we would not be sailing at all as the River Elbe was to low. We were notified of this on August 25, 2015 at 4PM. The reason I mention this, is we had left at 1125 AM for our Pre-Cruise trip to Krakow. We received this message after we had landed in Frankfurt. Imagine our surprise when we were informed that we would not be sailing. When we arrived in Krakow, there was not one Viking Representative to meet us. Two hours and several phone calls later, someone finally picked us up. Now, we could have taken and paid for a cab, but ALL transfers were to be included in our paid trip. Once we got to hotel in Krakow, we contacted our travel agent back in Iowa and she assured us that although we would not be sailing on the first half of our trip, we would be sailing on the 2nd half aboard the Viking Astrild. Needless to say, that was not true.
On August 30, we boarded the dry docked Viking Beyla. The Crew and Staff were the most pleasant people we could ask for. They made the stay pleasant for us. We did ask how long they had been dry docked and we were informed 6 weeks! REALLY, and Viking lets you know the day you are flying over that you could Cancel? Then to really slap you in the face they offer you a $1,000 per person Voucher to be used within a year. We are not your average people that can shell out thousands of dollars to do this. We need to save up.
We did not sign up for a land tour. We have done these and did not like that you need to be up by a certain time to board a bus and travel. If this had been a land tour, at least we would have seen different scenery each day instead of the same thing. The majority of our tours were in the morning, so you would need to get up, eat breakfast, board a bus, tour, back on the bus, back to the ship for lunch, and then NOTHING. I can sit at home and watch TV. At least when we were in Dresden, you were within walking distance of the square, but when we were dry docked in Wittenberg, the only thing close was a beer garden and grocery store. You could take a cab to the market, but trying to find a cab was ridiculous. This was a joke of a trip. If anyone is considering taking a Viking River Boat Cruise, I would think twice....
Now, our pre-cruise in Krakow was great. Krakow is a beautiful quaint town. People are friendly tons of things to do day and night. Visited the Salt Mines and Auschwitz. We are glad we had booked this. Prague was beautiful also. Only thing is that the hotel that Viking put us up in was in the middle of nowhere. Was a 10-15 minute walk to get anywhere. Berlin was great also. We hired a private guide to take us around and was very impressed with him. Read Less