Only way we would tour China was with a guided tour; we chose Viking because friends had recommended Viking for its wonderful service and comprehensive excursions. We were not disappointed. In fact, we loved every minute, though the schedule and pace were extremely exhausting. Our tour, "Undiscovered China," began in Shanghai, ending in Beijing. We felt safe the entire time and were amazed at the friendliness and openness of the Chinese people. Our guides all along the way were extraordinary, especially "TOM," our guide who stayed with us on the entire tour. At one point, one of our fellow travelers became very ill and had to spend a couple of nights in a local hospital. Viking's attention to her needs all along the rest of the trip was amazing. We will definitely travel with Viking again.
We would recommend that Viking upgrade the China ship...it was tired, but the crew and staff were absolutely wonderful.
The pace, though, was a killer. Quite a few of us had to miss a day of touring along the way, just because of being worn out. Some fell ill and had to miss a day or two of touring. I haven't a suggestion to remedy this, but too much of the local food seemed to be the culprit in most cases.
All in all, this was the trip of a lifetime, and I would do it again in a heartbeat.
The cabin was actually disappointing. The ship appeared to be old and tired, though the public areas were very very nice. The was much less than what we expected from Viking; the carpet was old, the bathroom was old and the shower leaked water onto the floor (or maybe it was the toilet).
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