My husband and I, rookie river-cruisers, traveled with my elderly mom and her sister who are seasoned veterans. Everything they told us about what we would experience was true: fabulous staff, exceptional customer service, interesting and varied excursions - all of it! The cruise had just the right amount of "bells and whistles" for us, as we didn't need many of the typical ocean cruise features while we watched France go by during our sailing time.
We had plenty of time to explore Paris before, during, and after the cruise (we arrived early and departed the day after disembarking), as well as towns and villages along the route and of course the powerful experience of visiting Normandy. Tour guides were friendly and informative, there were options for those who wanted less physical intensity on the excursions, and there was a great balance of included and optional excursions. In addition, there were many social opportunities for those who wanted to gather with old friends or make new ones.
We were very impressed with the Viking experience. If your goal is to explore a culture at a comfortable pace with excellent servers and crew who are friendly, accommodating, and funny, this may be the trip for you!