29 Nuremberg First-Time Cruisers Cruise Reviews

This cruise was recommended by our relatives. It was truly a marvelous experience in every respect. The rooms were exquisitely appointed and comfortable. I just wish that they were a bit larger, which was why I rated it a 4/5. The food ... Read More
This cruise was recommended by our relatives. It was truly a marvelous experience in every respect. The rooms were exquisitely appointed and comfortable. I just wish that they were a bit larger, which was why I rated it a 4/5. The food was a gastronomical delight as well. There was a full breakfast daily, as well as lunch, tea, cocktails and dinner. The food was definitely gourmet with many options for those on special diets. I can't speak highly enough about the wait staff. They were the most accommodating people I have ever experienced. The daily excursions were well planned and insightful. There was also daily entertainment in the evening. I am a person who has motion sickness; however, I never felt this boat move. It was wonderful in every respect. It you want to be waited on hand and foot every minute of the day, this is the place for you! Read Less
Sail Date June 2016
This was our first river cruise. In planning for our cruise, we reviewed costs of various cruise lines. Surprisingly, Scenic was less than Viking but offered more since it was all-inclusive - gratuities, drinks any time, a number of ... Read More
This was our first river cruise. In planning for our cruise, we reviewed costs of various cruise lines. Surprisingly, Scenic was less than Viking but offered more since it was all-inclusive - gratuities, drinks any time, a number of excursions at each docking, butler (loved the 6:30 knock on the door each morning with a fresh pot of coffee), laundry etc. These extras at no cost made the cruise very enjoyable. Our friends had taken a Viking cruise and after a day on Scenic, their opinion was that a Viking ship could not compare to the Scenic Amber. The Scenic Amber was new ship and fantastic. Cabins are spacious with lots of storage including space under the beds for luggage bags and 20 hangers. The king sized bed was very comfortable and you could change positions of the mattress with a remote control. The "Sun Lounge" concept is excellent - essentially provides an extra 40 sq ft of cabin space. You can sit on the 2 chairs and watch the scenery no matter what the weather - if it is raining, keep window up; if sunny open window so that you have a balcony. Toiletries are top off the line (according to my wife - L Occitane). The crew were very friendly and willing to do anything they could to satisfy you. Meals were delicious and had lots of choices - hard not to gain some extra weight. They have a special restaurant called Portobellos with a 6 course meal. All guests can book it once during the cruise - would recommend they book as soon as they arrive to get the day that is best for them. The majority of the excursions were excellent - especially when the dock was located in the center of town. The best dock was in Budapest where the ship was directly opposite the Parliament Buildings. Some were not - main disappointment was Nuremberg - too much time was spent at the Documentation Centre and, probably due to the rain, the "Taste of Nuremberg" was disappointing according to some. The highlight was the night cruise of Budapest in which they light up all the historical buildings. Day and night photos of the Parliament Buildings in Budapest from our ship are attached. One decision we made was not to book the Scenic 3 night Prague tour before the cruise. We felt that the cost of $2600 more per couple was too much. We did the 3 night tour on our own at a cost of $2100 - a savings of $500. We were very happy with the results and for the $2100 we got: - Accommodation at the Marriott Prague - $500 - same hotel as the Scenic tour - Private Tour Company - $800 - included Prague airport pickup on Friday; 4 hour walking tour of Prague castle and surrounding area on Saturday; 4 hour walking tour of Old & New Town and river cruise on Sunday; transportation from Prague to the ship in Nuremberg including a Pilsen Brewery tour on Monday - All other expenses (meals, drinks, souvenirs etc) - $800 - One dinner was at the Zvonice Restaurant located on the 7th floor of a 16th century bell tower 5 minutes from the hotel with the tables surrounding the original bell. Another dinner was at Kampa Park Restaurant on the Riverside Terrace overlooking the Charles Bridge. We feel the Scenic Gem of Danube river cruise was excellent and exceeded our expectations. Our decision not to book the Prague pre-cruise tour and do it on our own was a good one. We will definitely consider Scenic first if we decide on another river cruise. Read Less
Sail Date May 2016
This was for our honeymoon and we both love Christmas Hence the Christmas Market Tour on Viking. The ship was fine, the staff and excursions were above average. What was not good were the meals. Dinner was close to atrocious. They served a ... Read More
This was for our honeymoon and we both love Christmas Hence the Christmas Market Tour on Viking. The ship was fine, the staff and excursions were above average. What was not good were the meals. Dinner was close to atrocious. They served a lot of foods that most people were opting out of and even their alternates were not good. I ate the chees plate several times just to have some type of food. The worst, was the dessert. You are in Germany, supposed to have a pastry chef who was introduced and you might as well had been eating nothing because it did not have taste. Because we were there over the holiday itself there were not as many options on land to eat. The few we got we took advantage of and the last night meals were little something or another that were smaller than your finger even if there were seven courses. Also no food was available after we had a shore excursion and they charged for everything if it was not mealtime including ice tea. If you take this cruise try to eat before boarding the ship and bring food with you because they won't have any. Read Less
Sail Date December 2015
First of all, we ended up on the Jarl instead of the Alta, due to low river water. My husband and I had never been on a cruise before, so we did not know what to expect. We were pleased with the accommodations and were comfortable. We ... Read More
First of all, we ended up on the Jarl instead of the Alta, due to low river water. My husband and I had never been on a cruise before, so we did not know what to expect. We were pleased with the accommodations and were comfortable. We were on the lowest deck, so very little view from the clearstory window, but that meant more privacy from passing ships too! The staff was very friendly and willing to accommodate our needs. The food was outstanding! We liked how the menu was designed to allow us to sample the ethic food of the area we happened to be in, plus chose other dishes if we chose too. We were able to get to know one waiter, Jasenko, in particular for our party of eight, and he learned to know what we liked. We enjoyed seeing him each day. My husband and I went on the scheduled tours that came with our package, plus paid extra to go on additional tours in the afternoon. We were glad we did, for the history of each city was interesting, the old buildings and churches were interesting to look at, and we developed an appreciation for the long history of Europe. We took hundreds of pictures! We were very impressed with how well organized the activities were. Kudos to the Activity Director, Mario. He even prepared us the day before for sights we would see, and things we might like to do when we had free time. We even were able to see and hear samples of the ethnic music in the lounge while visiting various cities! Even our departure was well organized! We appreciated how the staff made sure we saw our luggage and put it on the bus we were departing on. The organization we saw on this trip was truly amazing. We enjoyed the trip so much, that we have booked a river cruise trip on the Rhine for November 2016 with our same group of eight! :) Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
We wanted our 30 wedding anniversary to be special and Viking did not disappoint! From the time we arrived at the airport in Nuremberg until we were dropped off at the airport in Budapest, we were treated like royalty. Yes, we got the ... Read More
We wanted our 30 wedding anniversary to be special and Viking did not disappoint! From the time we arrived at the airport in Nuremberg until we were dropped off at the airport in Budapest, we were treated like royalty. Yes, we got the email shortly before our departure date about the need to change boats at one point, but it was to be only once, and we knew we could live with that. Since water levels are unpredictable, it goes with the territory. We cannot fault Viking for that. The good news was, that due to rainfall the previous two days, we did not have to change boats at all. The one time we did have to be bussed due to HIGH water, we were so impressed with how efficiently they arranged everything. It was done seamlessly that, if we hadn't know differently, we would have thought it was always planned that way. Our cabin was lovely. We had a French Balcony which meant we had floor to ceiling windows that afforded us unobstructed views...unless we were in a lock of course! The room size was quite adequate for our needs; the bed very comfortable. There was plenty of storage space for our clothes as well as our luggage. We appreciated all the little things: the bottled water to take with us on our shore excursions, being greeted with delicious hot chocolate upon our return, the coffee bar and cookies, and so many other things. The food was varied and delicious! There were many items to choose from each evening and you could have beer or wine with lunch and supper if you chose. The desserts were out of this world! I loved that we could sit wherever we wanted each meal, which gave us a chance to meet a variety of people from many countries. We had an amazing concierge, Sonya, who went above and beyond with her service and friendliness. No matter what was going on, she always had a smile on her face. She had lots of great advise about places to visit while in port if we had extra time. I liked the way they kept us so well informed, with a short meeting each evening in the lounge to brief us on the next day's activities and any pertinent information we needed to have. Our recreational director, Vlad, was friendly, patient, courteous and hard working. His humor was an added bonus! Our shore excursions were wonderful. The guides at each stop were remarkably knowledgeable, friendly and helpful. Each port was unique and had so much history and interest with lots of beautiful scenery, historic buildings and colorful locals to photograph. We even got to go to a couple of the Christmas Markets, even though most of them were not open until the following week. We certainly were able to get the flavor of the Christmas Markets with all their charm and uniqueness. The evenings were enjoyable with various entertainment that was representative of the area we were in. Each evening we were treated to piano music in the lounge before supper. There were also singers, dancers, and musicians to entertain us most evenings. I would highly recommend a Viking cruise to any and all. You will not find a higher caliber of service anywhere, nor a more friendly, efficient crew. When they wished us good morning and wished us a good day, we got the sense that they really meant it. The method they use to get everyone off the ship and to the airport was like a well oiled machine. What a great way to celebrate our special anniversary! Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
I am from TX and have never taken a cruise before. In fact I always said if I couldn't walk home I wasn't going. Let me also say my job requires travel and I have worked in 42 of the 50 states in the USA. With that being said I ... Read More
I am from TX and have never taken a cruise before. In fact I always said if I couldn't walk home I wasn't going. Let me also say my job requires travel and I have worked in 42 of the 50 states in the USA. With that being said I decided to go on this trip with 10 other couples. My wife was telling me about the low water and how we might have to be bused to some of the ports, that did not sound like fun having to pack and unpack. However it started to rain just days before or arrival and the water level came up which was great but there was one spot in the river with to much current an for safety we had to get on a bus and ride 45 minutes to the next town. The buses were great clean and the ride pleasant. Viking bought our lunch at a great restaurant for our trouble. All I can say is the people were fantastic and attentive to our needs on and off the ship. Our room was perfect and the condition of the ship was also great. The food outstanding. We got to know our servers very well and they treated us better than family. All of the tour guides we had were great and yes we could understand them and hear them. Our only disappointment was most of the Christmas markets did not open until after our trip was over. But that is not Vikings doing. We are already planning another trip with Viking from Paris to Normandy in November 2016. Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
We spent much of our "cruise" riding around in buses. If I had wanted to take a bus tour it would have been less expensive. We spent a day and a half traveling by bus consequently we had much less time to,spend at our ... Read More
We spent much of our "cruise" riding around in buses. If I had wanted to take a bus tour it would have been less expensive. We spent a day and a half traveling by bus consequently we had much less time to,spend at our destinations. We were lied to by Viking. We had heard there were problems with the water level in the Danube prior to,our departure. We subsequently called Viking and were told everything was fine for the cruise. We traveled the same route by bus 3 times. The only concession they made for our inconvenience was one night of free drinks on the ship. We paid extra for a room with a view, What a huge waste of money. When we were docked it was usually in between 2 other Viking ships so our view was into another room on a different ship. When traveling by bus we were with 5 other buses so each time we stopped for a break there were all the other passengers as well as buses from other cruises. It was a nightmare, lines for the rest rooms and for snacks. Don't be fooled by their advertising that this is a luxury cruise. It is definitely NOT. If you are considering taking a cruise do your research. There are many other options besides Viking. Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
Just returned from my first and last "River Cruise". We spent more hours on busses than ships. The low water levels in the Danube has been an issue for months. Viking management has been aware of it yet continues to lie to ... Read More
Just returned from my first and last "River Cruise". We spent more hours on busses than ships. The low water levels in the Danube has been an issue for months. Viking management has been aware of it yet continues to lie to the passengers. Even when many of us contacted Viking the day before we were scheduled to cruise, they continued to say no problems, no ship changes, no busses. We were slated to be on the Njord. A week before we received an email switching us to the Freya. Day 3 we were bussed to Passau because the Freya could not leave Regensburg. Day 4 we were told we had to switch ships so we were bussed 4 hours to Melk to get on the Njord. I day after that we were told the Njord couldn't move and we were being bussed 4 hours to Budapest! Then in Budapest they put us in the Marriott!!!! So much for cruising!!!! There were a number of elderly with physical limitations who were on this trip. They all chose Viking because they had hoped to spend time on the ship rather than go on excursions. Because of the bussing they were forced to go! People with walkers and canes on cobblestones! They couldn't even wait in the bus if they felt they couldn't handle the excursions. I feel Viking did a real disservice to these people. However the crew of both ships and the program director were excellent! If Viking had been honest up front and informed passengers and allowed rescheduling I'm sure passengers would have been happier. Now Viking has a big PR problem because of all the cad reviews! Read Less
Sail Date October 2015
This was our first cruise. We found just about everything as advertised. We were disappointed by low water on the Danube And did have to spend part of a day on a bus being transferred to a second ship. We felt that Viking was more than ... Read More
This was our first cruise. We found just about everything as advertised. We were disappointed by low water on the Danube And did have to spend part of a day on a bus being transferred to a second ship. We felt that Viking was more than fair in the compensation offered for this inconvenience. First the offered a day in Munich, instead of Passu. On the day of travel from Reagensburg to Vienna, we were taken to a site seeing boat, where we were given lunch and about an hour and a half cruise down the Danube Lee beautiful section. After the cruise we were taken to the Milke monastery. Here we were given about a 2 1/2 hour tour and then completed our trip to our new ship. When we were arrived our baggage and everything was in the same state room as we have been in our previous ship. As a final compensation for the inconveniences we faced the whole ship was offered the opportunity to attend the opera that night in Vienna which was originally going to cost each person $75. Yes we would've liked to of been able to state on our ship cruise down the Danube it all the way but we believe that what Viking offered was more than reasonable compensation. As for the shipment that was very neat clean and the staff was excellent. We found our room to be a decent size. We were quite pleased with the food there was many options to choose from at all meals and it was no problem if you felt you needed a little more of something the staff was more than accommodating. there was nothing we asked for that they didn't make every attempt to get for us. We especially liked the little gathering prior to dinner to inform us of the next day's activities. When we returned from dinner to our room there was our daily paper that told us a little bit about the next area we would be at and what was going on that following day. Basically every day we had a guided tour of the city we were at or near and I have to say that we were pleased with all of them obviously somewhere better than others but I can't say that any of more bad. I would recommend that most days you skipped lunch on the ship and spend your time in the city that you're at. Read Less
Sail Date October 2015
I recently took the Scenic Opal on the Danube to Budapest. Although not a fault of Scenic, the river level was very low and limited the ship to only one day and a couple of nights of sailing. We were bused into Budapest from ... Read More
I recently took the Scenic Opal on the Danube to Budapest. Although not a fault of Scenic, the river level was very low and limited the ship to only one day and a couple of nights of sailing. We were bused into Budapest from Komaron. However the reason I am compelled to write this review has nothing to do with the river. It has everything to do with Scenic and their awful customer service. Not once did any of the staff even apologize for the unfortunate situation and how the customers would now have to be bused several hours each day to the various land excursions. They were rushed and acted like THEY were being put out by the situation. The food quality and varieties were awful and the "special" dining options for the Portebello and La Rieve dining was disappointing to be generous. The entertainment was virtually non-existent and the views from the balconies was nothing more than other ship parked a foot outside your window. To call this a luxury cruise is completely false and I would not recommend Scenic to anyone seeking a river cruise. There are other options and to pay a premium for what is below average at best makes this a terrible value. The true test is the follow up by Scenic. After you leave the ship, they could care less about how they performed. This speaks volumes about their appreciation of the customers. Do not take Scenic. Read Less
Sail Date September 2015
My wife and I, along with friends, took a Viking Cruise on the Danube departing September 25th, 2015 from Nuremburg, Germany. It was planned to arrive in Budapest on October 1st. It did not. Our Viking Cruise was a total ... Read More
My wife and I, along with friends, took a Viking Cruise on the Danube departing September 25th, 2015 from Nuremburg, Germany. It was planned to arrive in Budapest on October 1st. It did not. Our Viking Cruise was a total disappointment, with a significant under delivery in overall customer experience due to: 1) the excessive use of bus transportation with “claimed” low waters in the Danube, 2) Viking’s lack of communication on this issue prior to our trip commencement and during its duration 3) a requirement to change ships (Viking Var/Tor) for the second half of the cruise, and 4) no completion of the trip in Budapest where we were promised an evening cruise to view this magnificent city by night. Viking well in advance of our departure knew of the low water levels. No option of canceling our trip was given. Here are the details. 1. We did not have a full and fulfilling River cruise, using bus transportation for the bulk of the trip to access towns and cities, including Passau, Melk and Budapest. Our cruise became the most expensive BUS trip we have ever experienced. The extent of our bus transportation reduced our time to experience these major cites to well below the quality that Viking committed to. One bus trip exceeded 4 hours. We even missed the first evening in Vienna and much more that was promised. 2. The extent of our river cruising on the Danube was approximately 90 minutes completing the Wachau Valley, disappointingly at the end of the day, in dark lighting. This was hardly the time to see this wonderful scenery, take great photos, and see the promised beauty of the rest of this leg of the river. This part of the cruise was promised to start at lunchtime. It did not. 3. Our trip was not completed. We did not finish our voyage with a promised evening River Cruise on the Danube in Budapest. Luckily, we had extended our trip, and purchased an evening cruise in Budapest with a local operator and experienced this magnificent city from the river, but incurred the additional cost. Viking could have figured out a way to deliver this end piece of the journey. We, as has many of our cruise colleagues have, informed Viking of our negative experiences with their Danube Viking Cruise, asking for refunds and credits. We have communicated via email to VP Customer Relations, Jason Pashko, Head of North America, and Torstein Hagen, CEO of Viking. We have heard no replies after requesting for personal phone calls to better describe our experience. We have been left with Customer Relations Case Managers who have offered us a 25% credit on a future trip. Consistent with Viking’s “divide and conquer” approach to customer complaints, they refuse requests for taking the issue to senior management, and have offered credits ranging from 20% to 35% on a future Viking Cruise for our cruise colleagues. This is ridiculous. Why would an organization the size of Viking offer differing compensation levels across customers on the same cruise, all experiencing the same shortfall in experience? How DISAPPOINTING!!!!!!!!! Read Less
Sail Date September 2015
My husband and I just returned from a "cruise" from Nuremberg to Budapest on the Viking Var which began September 18, 2015. We were very disappointed as there was very little cruising done due to low water levels on the Danube. ... Read More
My husband and I just returned from a "cruise" from Nuremberg to Budapest on the Viking Var which began September 18, 2015. We were very disappointed as there was very little cruising done due to low water levels on the Danube. Instead, after docking in Regensberg, we were bussed from the ship to Passau and back permitting only a very short visit in Passau. Then the following day we were bussed to Melk and put on a very crowded local tour ship to visit the Danube Narrows. It was standing room only on the ship's deck. We were allowed only a 30 minute tour in Melk before being bussed to Linz where the ship Tor was docked for repairs. We embarked on Tor and sailed to Vienna. We were then loaded onto another bus for a day trip to Prague. Since we were scheduled for a post-trip in Prague, we asked Viking to arrange for us to remain in Prague rather than being bussed back to the ship and then bussed back to Prague the next day. They would not accommodate us. We had very little time in the cities we were scheduled to visit, not to mention the discomfort of long and cramped bus travel. For the short time we were actually on the ship, we enjoyed the food, cabin, and service. However, this just provided an even starker contrast with the unpleasant conditions experienced during the major part of the trip. We were very unhappy with Viking's customer service. We had contacted them before the cruise because we had heard of problems due to low water levels on the Danube. We had planned to postpone our trip if conditions were unstable. They assured us that there were no problems and agreed to notify us in advance if any deviations from the itinerary were expected. We later found out that passengers were being bussed to ports at the same time that Viking was assuring us there were no problems. We understand that unexpected events may occur while cruising, with a need to make adjustments. But Viking was well aware that not only were cruise disruptions possible, they were very likely to occur. Viking provided information to us at the last possible moment throughout the trip, claiming that every deviation in the itinerary was a complete surprise. Read Less
Sail Date September 2015
Two days in and at 8:30 pm we were told to pack our bags and be ready at 8 am for a 4.5 hour bus ride to the next port and unpack and start all over again. A lot of vacation time wasted. When the program director was asked the conditions ... Read More
Two days in and at 8:30 pm we were told to pack our bags and be ready at 8 am for a 4.5 hour bus ride to the next port and unpack and start all over again. A lot of vacation time wasted. When the program director was asked the conditions he acted like a true politician and dodged the answer. We almost witnessed mutiny on the bounty as many wanted to throw him overboard. While on board we checked other reviews and found the low river conditions had existed for about 10 weeks in a row. Same thing happened when approaching Budapest, had to take a bus 1.5 hours to get there. Many people opted not to take another 1.5 hour ride back to boat and then another 1.5 ride back first thing in the morning to disembark. We are all adults and appreciate being told in advance of the expected circumstances. Meals were OK, nothing to write home about. Breakfast staff was rude at times and very unaccommodating if you were 5 minutes late after breakfast closed. Bar staff was outstanding and comical, a welcome relief. Entertainment was a piano player who played elevator music. Only one night was lively. Optional tours were spent more on a bus than time on the tour. You could be on the bus for 1 hour then have 1.5 hour on your own then back on the bus for the 1 hour trip back. The two most anticipated views from the river cruise were never realized, Passau and Budapest. Will never use Viking again. Spent over 16 hours on bus. Maybe they should rename it the "River-Bus" tour! Read Less
Sail Date September 2015
The cruise itself was good. The staff was excellent. The food was better some nights than others. I'm rating it as average not because of anything the staff could have done better, but because Viking blew it with pre-cruise ... Read More
The cruise itself was good. The staff was excellent. The food was better some nights than others. I'm rating it as average not because of anything the staff could have done better, but because Viking blew it with pre-cruise communication. We embarked on Viking Var and disembarked on Viking Tor. A heads up regarding the low water levels of the Danube would have been appreciated by most passengers. Bottom line, I still enjoyed myself. But many passengers have mobility issues and transferring them by bus to a new ship was uncomfortable. The staff managed irate passengers best they could. In fact, each and everyone deserves a raise in pay! We were told ours was the 10th cruise that had been diverted. So how come no one received a letter in advance? Passengers could have been more understanding of the situation had they been given a heads up in advance. Maybe they can better manage their expectations had the communication from Viking been better. Again, I personally had a good time. I met great people and took home wonderful memories of a trip with my mother. I get that Mother Nature interferes, but Viking needs to be held accountable for not communicating. I want to give George, the Viking Var Program Director, a huge shout out. George is a rock star and had a near impossible task of bearing the brunt of angry passenger resentments. George deserves a raise and a nice long holiday! Read Less
Sail Date September 2015
First cruise experience for me. On paper the order of events were well planned out however problems arouse only after being in the tour for "Food and Art Lovers" as it was portrayed. Initial greetings were very joyous and filled ... Read More
First cruise experience for me. On paper the order of events were well planned out however problems arouse only after being in the tour for "Food and Art Lovers" as it was portrayed. Initial greetings were very joyous and filled with anticipation both at the Hotel Boscolo in Praha (not part of the cruise line and they were a 5-star hotel from start to finish). and boarding the ship River Ambassador (RA). First 2 days in Praha was fantastic. The city tour arranged by Uniworld was a mixed response. The leader was well versed in Czech history and knew the town well. As it was about a 5 hour walking tour she began to wane in her duties such as properly holding the sign so we knew where she was, or going too quickly from one amazing artifact to the next leaving you wonder what piece she was talking about. But the worst was that she was not returning to the hotel (lazy?) and gave us some "instructions" in this medieval town. There are no true straight connecting streets in medieval towns and needless to say we lost our way back to our hotel The Cruise; we had a fun bus ride from Praha to the boat in Nuremburg. Boarding the RA was delightful and helpful. We were asked about any special needs or dietary restrictions by the restaurant manager. They were never met! One in our party could NOT eat dairy products and he kept brining her cheeses etc. He was all talk. Worst off, he began to avoid us especially after a few days we were given a form to fill out if something was not to our liking and they would adjust (they wanted to avoid negative critics such as this). In good spirit hoping to iron out differences we mentioned a few things to be changed as well as the good things we liked. He never smiled at us again .... well at the end of the cruise we were asked to write a review and suddenly he was our "friend" and tried to joke about him filling out our forms with all 5's The RA was a nice small ship of 110 folks. Rooms fairly efficient except the drawers only opened two inches this impossible to store stuff let alone get your hand in it. We had cob webs on our sliding glass door with at least one spider. The Cruise was at towns only long enough for you to do a tour and then an hour maybe to shop or see it on your own. By day two we quickly dropped the over-done tour and saw the quaint towns for ourselves as well as support the local purveyors by buying their goods and services and making wonderful conversations. Our head tour guide lady was not keen on this. She referred to us as shoppers I believe. The most memorable times were the silent gentle sliding along the river especially at night with the ships water lights on. Oh so romantic and pleasing. The head tour guide was also a mixed bag. She was knowledgeable and could be helpful when put to it otherwise she was under the impression she was a comedian. Her audience was captive because it was too awkward to walk out on her rambling storied, insignificant information or petty opinions. I think she picked up on this and really did not give us much of an approving look much of the time. Art and Food: where? The presentation of the food was best and the servers doing their utmost to be kind and helpful . They all deserve a 5-star; Shout out to Walter, the morning chef, Alex. Alexander and a few others I forgot to write their names down. The food was college dorm food. The chicken the first night had NO flavor. Fish on two nights was FROZEN fish as was the spinach. The wine was limited and even though they made daily port stops, the ship did not restock on our cruise. The Art was never mentioned. We finally surmised it was the paintings down the hall way which was a collection of various famous artists. One door down from us was a Picasso (copy I am sure) with all the genitalia promptly displayed. The Tours. Another mixed bag. Our trip to Rothenburg involved an hour bus ride with a great guide. We started at one end of the city and did our own thing and three hours later met back at the opening gait. we loved this town! Again, had we stayed on the tour we would not have done our shopping at the renowned Christmas store, nor bought a 2 foot long hot dog nor purchased meat and cheeses which we brought back to the ship. The tour guides were fairly well liked but again too little time to do our own thing in the town except for Rothenburg and Heidelberg. Straussburg for example we were way too long on the glass river boat and had what seemed less then 2 hours to tour the city on our own. This is what the RUSHED feeling was stemming from. OH, one other small tidbit. The tour guide for Vurzburg should be dismissed. During the bus drive to the "residence" she was remarking how the Allies should never have bombed this innocent town and tried to shame them. She did not realize there was an Englishman on this bus who's family was bombed out of existence by the Nazi Germans! She needs sensitivity training before she should ever be allowed to speak her opinion again in public I look forward to my next river cruise but this time I wish more individual time in these great cities and less tour guides (on the ship they could give us a layout of the town maybe?). If they say gourmet food then bring it. I am not sure if Uniworld can deliver on this. It has the right matrix for 60% of it but get a new chef, cafeteria manager and head tour guide. The Captain and general manager as well as the rest of the working crew were fantastic. Read Less
Sail Date September 2015
On the positive side, the Viking staff were very good handling stressful, difficult situations with composure and always being everywhere we needed them including the airports. The dining room staff were good also. The bus and walking ... Read More
On the positive side, the Viking staff were very good handling stressful, difficult situations with composure and always being everywhere we needed them including the airports. The dining room staff were good also. The bus and walking city tours and the organ concert in Passau were satisfying. Music in the lounge in the evening was enjoyable. As I was traveling with a walker, I appreciated the assistance I received with handling the walker. The negatives were having to pack and move twice unexpectedly due to low water. This meant missing some musical events. I appreciated the stay at the Budapest Hilton, the dinner there, the airport transportation and the bag with continental breakfast. This was very "first class." Read Less
Sail Date August 2015
Not mentioned in the marketing for a river cruise is that there has to be water in the river for a cruise to take place. While our cruise on the Danube was only modestly affected by low water levels (we left Regensberg four or five hours ... Read More
Not mentioned in the marketing for a river cruise is that there has to be water in the river for a cruise to take place. While our cruise on the Danube was only modestly affected by low water levels (we left Regensberg four or five hours early to avoid problems due to low water levels), cruises on the nearby Elbe River at the same time as our cruise were cancelled or modified substantially (boats used as stationery hotels and buses used as transportation) due to low water levels. Something for first timers to keep in mind when booking late summer river cruises. Although the food was delicious and plentiful, the chef's ambition exceeded his ability to execute during several meals. Everything else about the cruise was excellent. The Viking Skirnir is new and well designed and the crew was professional and well organized. We had a good time! Read Less
Sail Date August 2015
Nuremberg to Budapest. After reading reviews from others that started on Var and ended up on Tor there is not a lot I can add, but I'll try. The ship change, the bus rides, the lost luggage, and only 3 nights of crusing. And thats ... Read More
Nuremberg to Budapest. After reading reviews from others that started on Var and ended up on Tor there is not a lot I can add, but I'll try. The ship change, the bus rides, the lost luggage, and only 3 nights of crusing. And thats counting the high speed trip from Melk to where we stopped to pickup our luggage at 2300 before heading to Vienna. Thats from 0800 until 2300 with no way to freshen up or change clothes. We missed Passau thanks to a 4.5 hr bus ride, chose insted to enjoy a second day in Regensburg. I was looking forward to taking photos of castles along the Danube from Passau to Krems, but it was late afternoon and soon to dark for good photos. The crew on Var were friendly and much nicer than the crew on Tor. The cruise director on Var & Tor, Tatianna.(I'm sure It's misspelled) And guide Melos, are the best, and the only reason we diden't leave the ship in Regensburg, rent a car, and drive to Budapest. I am sure the Capitan knew, as well as Viking Corp. that the river was to shallow, and Regensburg would be as far as we could go (before) we left Nuremberg. That makes me mad . My wife and I saved for a year to take that cruise, and I think $8000 was far more than it was worth. Read Less
Sail Date August 2015
None of my party has ever been on a cruise before and didn't know what to expect. We loved it! It was a perfect vacation for my mom as her ability to walk long distances or on hard terrain is limited. My sister and I enjoyed it just ... Read More
None of my party has ever been on a cruise before and didn't know what to expect. We loved it! It was a perfect vacation for my mom as her ability to walk long distances or on hard terrain is limited. My sister and I enjoyed it just as much as she did although we did take the opportunity to take longer and faster walks when we could. The ship is new, having been brought on-line just this year. The amenities were all very nice although the pool was a little smaller than I expected. However, they do have an "endless pool-type" feature that creates a current if you want to swim. The weather when we sailed was cool and rainy for most of the days so I don't know if the retractable roof was opened much during the cruise. The lounge area is nice and has a lot of seating although if all cabins had been filled I think it might have been a little more crowded than I wold have liked. We found the cabins to be more spacious than we expected, and very comfortable. The ability to open the window as we sailed helped with the temperature control and brought in fresh air. We had full size floor to ceiling windows with two chairs we could use to watch as we sailed.The window was very large allowing us to stick our heads out to look around if we wished. We were on the middle floor which was perfect. We heard from others that it was noisier on the top floor but we heard very little noise in our cabins. We returned from dinner each night to find chocolate on our pillows and the schedule for the next day. (One day we forgot to turn off our do no disturb light so when they came in to put the chocolates on the beds they cleaned our cabin which we really appreciated but didn't expect.) The length of the walking tours were just right and we were allowed free time in just about every city we stopped in. For passengers who needed more time or fewer obstacles, there was always a "gentle walkers group which was perfect for our mom. For the most part the tour guides were very personable and knowledgeable about the area being toured. The guides were local at each port. The absolutely BEST part of the cruise was the staff. As "the Texan" says in a previous review, the staff on the Emerald Sun made us feel welcome the minute we set stepped out of our cab and grabbed our suitcases. We were on the same cruise as the Texan and agree with everything he said. The cruise director (Ray) worked very hard to provide all of the passengers with a good experience. He took our mother under his wing and called her "mum" which she really enjoyed. When she wasn't feeling well he knew (don't ask me how) and asked after her. He checked in with her when she would move around the ship which we really appreciated. I can't imagine a better cruise director. The wait staff, chefs, front desk staff, and housekeeping staff (and all of the other staff we met on board) were also wonderful. Their humor and their ability to remember our personal preferences was amazing. From the first day, they knew our likes and dislikes. My mom couldn't decide between desserts one evening so they brought her both. (She has never eaten so much and so well in her life....) The staff were always smiling, always polite, and always made sure we were having the best time possible. Some people felt the food became somewhat monotonous but we enjoyed it. The only thing I would have liked to see is fewer 5-course dinners as I am typically a more casual diner. The breakfast and lunch buffets were always good. the dinner were also good but lengthy. Possibly more spicy foods on occasion would be nice. I would love to cruise with this staff again at some time and would not hesitate to recommend the cruise line, the ship, and the staff to anyone. Read Less
Sail Date August 2015
It was our first river cruise and we really enjoy the experience so much that we want to go back soon. First, it was not a easy embarkation due to the low level of the Danube at this time of the year. It was a exceptional situation that ... Read More
It was our first river cruise and we really enjoy the experience so much that we want to go back soon. First, it was not a easy embarkation due to the low level of the Danube at this time of the year. It was a exceptional situation that the staff took care of everyone on board during the cruise time. We had to embark at Passau instead of Nuremberg ...but they did make sure that we didn't miss anything from day one. Big thanks and appreciation for our cruise director, Janos, who took care of us from Prague to Nuremberg to Passau. He was very accommodating to everyone on board. He had to make good decision and he did as well. We did enjoy the excursions and appreciate the suggestions that was offered to us. We did learn a lot on everything we saw. Our nice surprise was the excursion to Cesky Krumlov that we didn't have a clue it was so special and beautiful. On board, we did enjoy the grill lunch on the top patio and the bistro dinner in the lounge. It was a new experience and we did enjoy very much. The choice of meals and wine are excellent. We appreciate that there was no assigned seating at the restaurant so we can meet different interesting people from different places. The service at the reception, bar, restaurant is exceptional because there are less people on a river cruise ship. They took the time to know where you're from and what is your needs. The staff had a great sense of humour and having fun working around us. Thanks for a good experience on the Impression! We will be back for more cruises like this one. Read Less
Sail Date July 2015
This was our very first trip on Viking, and our very first trip to Europe, and we wouldn't have changed a thing. From the time we landed in Nuremberg, to 8 days later when we were taken back to the airport, we were treated like ... Read More
This was our very first trip on Viking, and our very first trip to Europe, and we wouldn't have changed a thing. From the time we landed in Nuremberg, to 8 days later when we were taken back to the airport, we were treated like royalty. *The staff was absolutely wonderful and attentive to all of our needs. Our Program Director, Terry, was beyond terrific. He made us feel comfortable and at home from the very first day. He remembered our names when we passed him on the boat, and always took the time to talk to us and answer our questions. The same can be said about our Concierge, Cristina. What a joy to work with. *We took advantage of all of the shore excursions, and enjoyed all of them. The daily schedule was planned out very nicely. It gave us plenty of time to explore the city on our own, or take part on an added excursion. *The only cruising that we have ever done was ocean cruising. Let me tell you, river cruising is nothing like it. I absolutely loved having a smaller amount of guests on the cruise. Everything felt more intimate and personal. *Everyone we met on the cruise was absolutely delightful. We are looking forward to keeping in touch with our new cruise partners in the years to come, and who knows...we might end up cruiing again in the future. *One last note---When we were dropped off at the airport for our return trip back home, I was pleasantly surprised to be met by Viking Cruise Staff members, who helped us through the airline check in process. Way to go Viking---you have thought of everything!!! At first, I said I wouldn't change a thing--but if...I mean, when, we cruise again, we will be flying in a few days earlier to take advantage of a pre cruise add on. Read Less
Sail Date July 2015
After four days in Prague and four in Goettingen we experienced a superbly planned and executed seven-day romantic cruise up and then down the Danube to Budepest. The service was excellent and cheerful, the food very good, wine excellent; ... Read More
After four days in Prague and four in Goettingen we experienced a superbly planned and executed seven-day romantic cruise up and then down the Danube to Budepest. The service was excellent and cheerful, the food very good, wine excellent; the cruising and scenery were a relaxing and beautiful experience; the cities and tours were interesting and well executed; the tour guide was tops: managing complicated excursions, giving briefings and explanations, leading/managing entertainment, always helpful- all with wit and good humor. We really got our money's worth. As older but fit travelers, we did get a bit tired near the end; this was due to the accumulated effect of the (moderate) mental and physical effort required to negotiate the the cities visited, even with arranged transport and Viking personnel assisting. All in all, a great trip. Read Less
Sail Date July 2015
Our family had a fantastic cruise down the Danube in late June / early July. The entire staff of the Avalon Panorama was great. We have highly recommend Avalon to many of our friends who are thinking of maybe taking a cruise. Enjoyed ... Read More
Our family had a fantastic cruise down the Danube in late June / early July. The entire staff of the Avalon Panorama was great. We have highly recommend Avalon to many of our friends who are thinking of maybe taking a cruise. Enjoyed meeting other people from all over the world on the cruise. The staff was very helpful as the service was outstanding. The staff show on the last night was fantastic. Janos Horvath, our cruise director was excellent as he took the time with all the passengers to make them comfortable. Started in Nuremberg, then Regensburg, on to Passau, took side trip to Cesky Krumlov in the Czech Republic, then re-joined the boat at Linz, stopped at the Melk Abbey, viewed the fantastic Wachau Valley, into Vienna, toured downtown Vienna at night, took the side trip to the Schonbrunn Imperial Palace. Enjoyed the Farewell Gala Dinner on the last night on the Panorama with the staff show. Enjoyed walking in downtown Budapest and seeing Castle Buda. My wife's grandparents emigrated from Hungary before WW I, so the trip had family history implications. Enjoyed the great Hungarian meals in Budapest. All of the on-shore excursions had great guides to explain the local history of the cities and sites that we visited. Read Less
Sail Date June 2015
My husband and I took this cruise from Nuremberg to Budapest. It was our first river cruise and we really enjoyed it! The service was great throughout the boat, the staff was friendly and very interested in your comfort and enjoyment. ... Read More
My husband and I took this cruise from Nuremberg to Budapest. It was our first river cruise and we really enjoyed it! The service was great throughout the boat, the staff was friendly and very interested in your comfort and enjoyment. Ama spends a lot of effort on small touches that add value to your experience, late night food after a concert in Vienna, fresh towels and a drink when you return from an excursion...and many more. Our cabin was well appointed, cozy, but comfortable with plenty of room for things. The make up of the passengers was older, 60 and up. In each case there was a variety of activities including hiking and bike riding in addition to the shore excursions. There were also several groups on each excursion, designed for those who need more time and those who wanted to move right along. Definitely something for everyone! Shore excursions were well organized, although it would be nice to have a bit more time on your own...tough to do with so much to cover in each location. (Moving groups of people is always a challenge, so many folks on their own planet, so be patient. Not a fault of the company, just the nature of dealing with people in general). Our local guides were very good in most cases. Our full day guide to Salzburg, Gabor was especially good, well organized, patient, told the good stories, and gave you lots of information, but didn't feel the need to talk constantly. Food and presentation of the food was excellent and the local dishes which changed with our location were great! We especially enjoyed Violeta and Marc as our servers! We came home with a few souvenir pounds extra! Dragon, our cruise director was charming....great personality and very interested in making your stay a memorable. While we had 3-4 days of rain or part rain, the highlight had to be Budapest. We just had no idea how beautiful it was. And the evening cruise with all of the city lights (and a lovely night) was really a great finale for the trip. I can't imagine going the other direction (ending in Nuremberg). The length of the cruise 8 days...was just the right amount for us. Read Less
Sail Date June 2015
This was our first river cruise, and we were not disappointed. A 5-star rating for Viking! We opted for the pre-trip in Prague. We were met by a Viking representative at the airport, who found us before we could find him. The staff at ... Read More
This was our first river cruise, and we were not disappointed. A 5-star rating for Viking! We opted for the pre-trip in Prague. We were met by a Viking representative at the airport, who found us before we could find him. The staff at the Viking desk in the hotel were extremely helpful. We experienced the right balance of planned excursions, optional excursions, and free time. Having that extra time in Prague was a wonderful antidote to jet lag. Viking transferred us to Nuremberg to meet the Tor. It greatly facilitated things. From the moment we walked on board the Tor, we got a taste of Viking hospitality, as we were greeted with champagne and a hot towel. As other reviewers have noted, it's a modern, sleek vessel, very comfortable, with plenty of spaces in the lounge, other areas, and deck to explore and watch the scenery go by. (I'm not going to provide a travelogue and discuss each port and what we saw. As one who reads reviews, I can find that elsewhere. I think discussing the cruise itself is what others want to know.) We understood going in that the cabin would not be large, but it was ingeniously designed, with more than enough room. Never once did we regret the decision to go with the Veranda where we could step out. Plenty of closet/drawer space and shelf space in the bathroom, which had heated floors (!) and high-end toiletries. Plenty of outlets, some of which were 110 (American style) and some 220 (European). The food was outstanding, with fresh ingredients and menus tied to the locale we were visiting. (There was also standard, traditional foods always available.) The wait staff could not have been more accommodating and helpful. While the portions were not large, never once did we leave hungry. In fact, we were full after every meal. On a few occasions, my spouse took advantage of the 24-hour coffee bar and freshly baked cookies in the afternoon. While we ate most often in the main dining room, on a few occasions we took advantage of the lighter meals on the Aquavit Terrace, which is a delightful way to dine. We were delighted with the support we got from all of the ship staff. Everyone was always unfailingly polite and helpful. We're giving a particular shout out to the Program Director and the Concierge, each of whom went above and beyond to accommodate an unusual request that involved our time once we parted in Budapest. We took advantage of most of the optional excursions, the only except was in Vienna, where we didn't have a lot of free time and just wanted that extra time to dine and explore. We were delighted with the guides wherever we were. We found them to be extremely knowledgeable and fluent in English. They were all terrific and greatly enhanced our time in the various locales. In the evenings, we were treated to delightful local entertainment or programs provided by the program director. The only reason I didn't give them 5 stars here was that because of the configuration of the lounge, sometimes it was difficult to see. But the quality of the entertainment was first-rate. Viking is very efficient when it comes to disembarkation, and it was interesting to see how they were able to "turn" the ship in one day, saying goodbye to one group of passengers and welcoming the next. We heard a few grumbles from fellow passengers who had very early flights out that Viking arranged, but we did not use Viking to book our air. In sum, we had a fabulous trip. We were very impressed with the service, accommodations, food (and wine, lots of wine), and the excursions, both planned and optional. We will travel again with Viking in the future, and without any reservations at all. Read Less
Sail Date May 2015

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