April 2014 Destination:
Europe - River Cruise Embarkation:
This week essentially started in Vega Terron, and ended in Porto. While I've river cruised with Viking a few times, this April 15, 2014 week was my first AMA trip. The captain, crew and cruise manager were tops in making things happen, and dealing with situations that just happen with mother nature affecting the height of the river etc. The first day, we couldn't start actually in Vega Terron, because a torrent of spring weather water would not let any ships go upstream on our scheduled day in the locks. We were bussed several hours to a different port downstream. Stuff happens. Not a big deal, when the passage opened a day or so later, we got to see all that was scheduled. We didn't expect that, as that was extra fuel for the ship to use to backtrack. Nice. Tour pacing and content, meals, on board entertainment and accommodations were at good as Viking, and, all in all, a tad better. Either company is excellent on river cruising. Meals were ample and delicious included wines, and More
Port was often served. Additionally we visited Port wineries on land. The Douro River is beautiful, with hills on either side. Entertainment was noteworthy-I've never seen as many travelers suddenly learning how to use the video on their cameras to capture performers! From college students in a musical group, to a musical family on board, we got a great feel for local traditions. The exercise room is small on river cruises-I don't take a river cruise to exercise on board, thank you. This is not for small children-take a Disney cruise for that. We bought transportation packages from our arrival and departure cities of Madric and Lisbon, and were glad we did-worth not having to schedule. Porto is a city worth an extra day or so, as is Lisbon or Madrid while in the general vicinity. Less
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