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When my husband and I planned our retirement, we promised each other cruises to the lands of our heritage - his, Scandinavia-German, mine Hungarian-German. We took care of the Scandinavia part 2 years ago, so this was my turn- and Viking Alsvin was the perfect choice! We chose late spring so the gardens would be in bloom; we chose to begin in Nuremburg and end in Budapest so we could extend our tour several days in the cities of my grandparents, Buda and Pest. We chose Viking on the recommendation of family and friends who love river cruising and say, over and over, that Viking is the best. We definitely agree! From the moment we were picked up at the airport to the moment we reluctantly disembarked in Budapest, our experience was wonderful. Our favorite gathering place with our new on-board friends was the AquaVit Terrace, where the lunch buffet was always fresh and delicious and the view delightful, cruising smoothly on the river, riding the locks or even just waiting our turn to enter. The upper sun deck is the best place for 360° views, at a table or stretched out on a lounge chair. with something cold and delicious at hand, But the ship is designed for outstanding viewing no matter where you are on board - even getting cappuccino and fresh pastries or cookies from the 24/7 coffee bar! Every meal on board, including the breakfast buffet, was delicious, with lots of international choices. The nightly regional dinners were wonderfully prepared and beautifully presented, but the best meal of all was the after-concert "snack" Chef Thomas prepared in Vienna: a gulyas soup that tasted just like the gulyas my grandmother made! Chef also surprised us with freshly made raspberry gelato cones, scooped and handed out as we returned to Alsvin after an especially warm walking tour - Yum! Although we are usually independent explorers, we opted to take all the included tours. They were conducted by local guides and terrifically informative if, at times, a little strenuous. We always had the option of extending our free time after the tours, which we did in several ports, but we will probably go back to our usual "independent" ways on our next cruise because of our tendency to mosey and linger.... There are two optional tours we highly recommend, however: the concert in Vienna and the horse farm outside Budapest! The concert, held in a private concert hall of a beautiful palace, was outstanding, as was driving through Vienna at night. The farm tour not only gave an historical view of Hungarian (think "Hun") horsemanship, but a delightful drive away from the city into the countryside. We had been told that we should book a night cruise in Budapest with one of the small companies that provide these trips, as it was a sight not to be missed. But we had a wonderful surprise: Viking Alsvin cruised up and down the Danube in spectacularly lit Budapest while we viewed it all from the sun deck - and got wonderful pictures and videos too - in the company of all our new friends! As on most cruises, the staff was a wonderful international conglomeration - and all the service was warm, friendly and impeccable. Our Program Director, Tessa, was a walking encyclopedia and could answer any question or solve any problem put to her, all with great enthusiasm and warmth. She was our "tour guide" topside as we floated (or so it seemed) down the river, pointing out interesting sites without intruding on our relaxed reveries. All in all, our trip is one never to be forgotten and far exceeded our expectations. Thank you Viking and all the crew and staff of Alsvin! If we never get to cruise again, we can truly say we've had the best!

Our "Heritage" Dream Cruise

Viking Alsvin Cruise Review by murrence

Trip Details
  • Sail Date: May 2018
  • Destination: Europe River
  • Cabin Type: Veranda Stateroom
When my husband and I planned our retirement, we promised each other cruises to the lands of our heritage - his, Scandinavia-German, mine Hungarian-German. We took care of the Scandinavia part 2 years ago, so this was my turn- and Viking Alsvin was the perfect choice!

We chose late spring so the gardens would be in bloom; we chose to begin in Nuremburg and end in Budapest so we could extend our tour several days in the cities of my grandparents, Buda and Pest. We chose Viking on the recommendation of family and friends who love river cruising and say, over and over, that Viking is the best.

We definitely agree!

From the moment we were picked up at the airport to the moment we reluctantly disembarked in Budapest, our experience was wonderful. Our favorite gathering place with our new on-board friends was the AquaVit Terrace, where the lunch buffet was always fresh and delicious and the view delightful, cruising smoothly on the river, riding the locks or even just waiting our turn to enter.

The upper sun deck is the best place for 360° views, at a table or stretched out on a lounge chair. with something cold and delicious at hand, But the ship is designed for outstanding viewing no matter where you are on board - even getting cappuccino and fresh pastries or cookies from the 24/7 coffee bar!

Every meal on board, including the breakfast buffet, was delicious, with lots of international choices. The nightly regional dinners were wonderfully prepared and beautifully presented, but the best meal of all was the after-concert "snack" Chef

Thomas prepared in Vienna: a gulyas soup that tasted just like the gulyas my grandmother made! Chef also surprised us with freshly made raspberry gelato cones, scooped and handed out as we returned to Alsvin after an especially warm walking tour - Yum!

Although we are usually independent explorers, we opted to take all the included tours. They were conducted by local guides and terrifically informative if, at times, a little strenuous. We always had the option of extending our free time after the tours, which we did in several ports, but we will probably go back to our usual "independent" ways on our next cruise because of our tendency to mosey and linger....

There are two optional tours we highly recommend, however: the concert in Vienna and the horse farm outside Budapest! The concert, held in a private concert hall of a beautiful palace, was outstanding, as was driving through Vienna at night. The farm tour not only gave an historical view of Hungarian (think "Hun") horsemanship, but a delightful drive away from the city into the countryside.

We had been told that we should book a night cruise in Budapest with one of the small companies that provide these trips, as it was a sight not to be missed. But we had a wonderful surprise: Viking Alsvin cruised up and down the Danube in spectacularly lit Budapest while we viewed it all from the sun deck - and got wonderful pictures and videos too - in the company of all our new friends!

As on most cruises, the staff was a wonderful international conglomeration - and all the service was warm, friendly and impeccable. Our Program Director, Tessa, was a walking encyclopedia and could answer any question or solve any problem put to her, all with great enthusiasm and warmth. She was our "tour guide" topside as we floated (or so it seemed) down the river, pointing out interesting sites without intruding on our relaxed reveries.

All in all, our trip is one never to be forgotten and far exceeded our expectations. Thank you Viking and all the crew and staff of Alsvin! If we never get to cruise again, we can truly say we've had the best!
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Cabin Review

Veranda Stateroom
Cabin B 309
Comfortable beds, lots of storage for clothes etc., a mini-fridge, delightful toiletries, fresh bottled water every day (in addition to bottles handed out every time we left or returned to the ship) , and a veranda for the times we were too tired to go topside for river viewing.
Middle Deck Balcony Cabins

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews