181 Paris Senior Cruise Reviews

My wife's father was in the D-day invasion and we wanted to visit the Normandy beaches. Pros of this line and ship: Excellent staff Good itinerary Good food Clean Excellent handling of air reservations and pick up ... Read More
My wife's father was in the D-day invasion and we wanted to visit the Normandy beaches. Pros of this line and ship: Excellent staff Good itinerary Good food Clean Excellent handling of air reservations and pick up and drop off at airport Informative enrichment programs Cons Wi-Fi is not secure Staterooms were tiny Only four TV stations: Sky Sports 1 CNN Fox News and CNBC. Four other stations did not work. I am somewhat disappointed with Viking. Most of my complaints are minor. However my biggest complaint was that they advertise a stay on the boat in Paris on the first and last nights. The boat was NOT in Paris. It was in a suburb resulting in a bus ride of anywhere from 30 minutes to as long as 2 hours. This is not good. Added to shore excursions that were too long made for an exhausting and not relaxing vacation. Shuttle buses to and from Paris were only pick up and drop off separated by six to eight hours. Thus on our own on day one we chose to pay for a cab to return to the boat early. I don't care if they charge more. They absolutely need to dock closer to the city. The promotional information is therefore misleading. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
We chose this cruise as it was something my elderly mother and father had always wanted to do. My father passed away before they had the chance to go so we did a mother daughter trip. The ship was beautiful and the staff were incredible ... Read More
We chose this cruise as it was something my elderly mother and father had always wanted to do. My father passed away before they had the chance to go so we did a mother daughter trip. The ship was beautiful and the staff were incredible with their service no matter what role they had on the boat. The food was amazing - as was the wine selections it was truly a wonderful experience and a wonderful way to see the Seine and its rich history. The organised trips were good although my only feedback on these were some were very arduous for any one really elderly or with mobility impairments. Although in saying this the cruise director was very good at describing each tour option the evening before. This was a lovely experience and total "all inclusive" so the price covered everything except the hairdresser or the massage, no tipping required. We could not really fault this except the weather could have been a little kinder :-) Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
A romantic river cruise? The A Rosa Viva advertising is more alluring than the experience. I echo the English speaking commentaries about a distinct lack of staff training. Even attempting to point out the lack of respect shown to us from ... Read More
A romantic river cruise? The A Rosa Viva advertising is more alluring than the experience. I echo the English speaking commentaries about a distinct lack of staff training. Even attempting to point out the lack of respect shown to us from a waitress, the maitre de brushed it off as normal behaviour. The cleaning personnel were the friendliest, and not as pompous as their colleagues. The engine broke down and we were forced to look at a berthing wall for three consecutive days in Rouen, France. We were offered a 20% discount on a next A Rosa cruise (in a German letter, of course), but even that will not entice us to choose this Company again. Whilst we accept the Caveat Emptor principle, we can only caution other potential disappointed passengers.We spoke to passengers travelling on a Viking river boat, and were jealous of their obvious joy in their cruising company. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
Suberb,clean,modern,well organized ship.Armin, room steward and Michael cruise director were charming helpful and kind.Great staff, meals and itinerary.ThanksCaptain Stamen for great leadership! The included on shore trips were great. ... Read More
Suberb,clean,modern,well organized ship.Armin, room steward and Michael cruise director were charming helpful and kind.Great staff, meals and itinerary.ThanksCaptain Stamen for great leadership! The included on shore trips were great. HOWEVER, those with canes, or disabilities don't have equal access to sites which require extensive walking,climbing .However, staff at the sites eg Vienna private show helped with special access to elevators and seating. The music shoe in Viea was outstandin and worth every penny. Loved the Hungarian band and dancers on board the Sky Glad to have all tips included in price.Easy! The buses to and from sites were well organized . Luggage handled by staff boarding and debarking. Weathe was great for the end of August on the Danube from Nuremberg to Budapest except a bit tpp warm om Aug 30 to Aug 31. I would recommend this trip and itinerary. Just add more otions for those with disabilities and perhaps seat these people first on buses. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
This cruise was a present from my parents and for a range of reasons I took my son, so our family group ranged from 16-76 years old. I was a bit anxious about this, assuming (rightly) that he was going to be decades younger than most ... Read More
This cruise was a present from my parents and for a range of reasons I took my son, so our family group ranged from 16-76 years old. I was a bit anxious about this, assuming (rightly) that he was going to be decades younger than most people. It didn't make a difference! We had an absolute ball. We were picked up efficiently, fed on arrival and then the secret luggage fairies delivered our bags to our room...with check in being earlier than expected. The cabins were a delight - the window came down to give the impression of a balcony...beds were comfy, shower strong and loads of storage space. The food was brilliant - obviously we ate too much and I had plenty of excellent wine. I bought the extended drinks package, so for a small additional amount, had free flowing wine and beer.Without this, the drinks were slightly expensive. The staff were just brilliant - a special mention to Miguel - the hotel manager - he was everywhere - loading bags, serving ice cream, moving bikes. The company is lucky to have him. Our excursion guides were all slightly' quirky' - funny, knowledgable and at no point turgid or boring. There were a range of walking groups, from a bit of a hike to gentle walking - so catering for everyone. We were rubbish at the quizzes, but at least there were plenty we could try. There is a swimming pool and gym (not huge, but OK) on board, lots of cycles, yoga and aqua. It didn't make a dent on the food I ate - but it could have been much worse! So I have gone from being slightly anxious to discussing our next trip with Emerald! Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
We chose Scenic as we had travelled with them once before. We were not disappointed. The whole time we felt cared for and nurtured. The cabin was beautifully appointed with an airy balcony and plenty of space. Dining options were numerous ... Read More
We chose Scenic as we had travelled with them once before. We were not disappointed. The whole time we felt cared for and nurtured. The cabin was beautifully appointed with an airy balcony and plenty of space. Dining options were numerous and all food and drink was fantastic quality. Entertainment included an onboard pianist, in addition to performers being brought aboard from various ports. We were even treated to a recital by a classical quartet in a Château, where Scenic docked just for the evening performance, then sailed on. Very special! Most of all, the staff were welcoming, attentive, competent and caring, which always makes a trip. There was always a personal touch. The cruise director was amazing - a French national who was full of wonderful insights into her native country. Hotel Manager ensured all F&B ran seamlessly. Food and drink choices were incredibly varied and top quality. Highly recommend! Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
Summary over a cruise on the Haute Seine and Yonne on a barge. As seasoned cruisers, knowing well all aspects of cruising on seas and rivers, we had no experience about traveling on a barge in a canal. It was also time to overcome this ... Read More
Summary over a cruise on the Haute Seine and Yonne on a barge. As seasoned cruisers, knowing well all aspects of cruising on seas and rivers, we had no experience about traveling on a barge in a canal. It was also time to overcome this lack. A number of companies offer this kind of cruising on barge with 8 to 16 passengers, however very often at exorbitant prices. Luckily, we discovered that the company CroisiEurope offers one week cruise on various canals in Europe, at very decent price, especially considering that all is inclusive (full board, all alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks and all excursions) on modern barges with a maximum of 22 passengers. We opted for the barge Ms Deborah, which cruises on the canal de la Loire, with the Briare to Nevers’ route. We were looking forward to this itinerary because the proposed excursions particularly suited us. Unfortunately, only a few days before departure, we were informed that due of a lack of water in the Loire canal the Ms Deborah was switched over to the Haute Seine and Yonne for a new itinerary from Paris to Sens. Despites the fact that this new itinerary didn’t really meet our desires, especially the excursions, we decided to accept the change. Our group of 6 persons from Switzerland was very warmly greeted by all members of the crew when arriving on the quai de Grenelle in Paris where we see the MS DEBORAH for the first time, our floating home for the week. With its two dominating colours blue and white, it is difficult not to fall in love with this beautiful small ship. We were invited immediately for the welcome cocktail during which we met officially the crew and the other six individual passengers originating from New Zealand, England and the USA. With less time than it needs to tell, the relation between us was created, so that everyone felt part of a bunch of friends knowing each other for long time. There is no need to present here the MS Deborah itself, as this is already thoroughly done on the Cruise Critic page. The crew of 6 persons is composed of a captain, a sailor, a cruise director, a chef, a waitress and a cabin hostess who put all their efforts to satisfy the passengers and offer them the best possible service. The captain as well as the sailor are always trying to make passengers at ease, answer questions or even bring a drink. The lady cruise director is omnipresent, taking care of the passengers better than a mother hen would do. The talented young French chef aims to produce dishes which please everybody. His outstanding sauces and excellent desserts should be particularly praised. However, referring to comments we made during a cruise on the Seine Princess two years ago, we cannot understand that why today it is not possible to offer the choice of a light buffet at lunch instead a three or even four course menu! The always smiling and friendly Hungarian waitress was very caring and attentive, without forgetting the cabin hostess doing a great job in the cabins, the public spaces and even the kitchen. It wouldn’t be fair to name a single person as all members of the crew, without any exception, do all they can to make the cruise unforgettable. Our one-week cruise on the barge Ms Deborah enables us today to make the following comments: ~ a cruise on a barge cannot be compared to any other kind of cruise ~ despite all the comfort offered on modern barge, one must be very aware that life on board happens at a restraint space, requiring therefore much flexibility and understanding in all aspects from all passengers ~ in our case, being only 12 passengers, we had the opportunity to take our meals on the terrace. We also never had the feeling that the boat was overcrowded. This can be different when the ship is full, especially by bad weather ~ the state of mind between the passengers who are mostly of foreign nationalities, who don’t know each other and don’t speak French, must function well right from the beginning ~ if the interrelation works, it is difficult to find a more relaxing and enjoyable way of travelling ~ the success on a barge is mainly due on the quality of its crew. Ms Deborah’s crew members have quickly created a family spirit on board, showing also that they genuinely like what they do ~ excursions can play a major role in choosing an itinerary. Not speaking French or English can be a handicap Do we recommend to do a cruise on a barge? Yes, definitively! It’s affordable, the atmosphere on board is unique, the routes can be very interesting. In our case, this second try with CroisiEurope gives them a better note. We would also consider again if some improvements are made in a certain sector Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
Having cruised the Rhine also with Scenic, we needed another holiday where we would also be spoilt, and so we decided to go with them on the river Seine, visiting WW1 and 2 battlefields, and many other interesting historical places. The ... Read More
Having cruised the Rhine also with Scenic, we needed another holiday where we would also be spoilt, and so we decided to go with them on the river Seine, visiting WW1 and 2 battlefields, and many other interesting historical places. The crew of the Gem are brilliant, and there is honestly nothing bad that can be said about them, they are attentive, dedicated staff who will do anything for you. Lots of great wine and cheese to be tasted. Watch your waistline on this cruise, as France is famous for it food, and the Gem's chefs are brilliant, and produce some absolutely great meals, and of course if you don't like what's on the menus they will make you anything. Once your on-board put your wallet and CC's in the safe, you will not need them. Everything on this cruise was included, including alcoholic drinks, and by the way there is a massive range of cocktails, which can be skippered or slurped on the upper deck in a light breeze as you sail down the river. Scenic Gem can get into harbours other cruise ships can not visit, so you are alone sometimes whilst docked, brilliant! Try this you will not be disappointed, but you will be spoilt. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
I did explore Paris before embarkation. Saw all the local attractions and enjoyed the local restaurants. Did not like having people smoking in restaurants, hopefully this will be addressed in the near future. Welcome dinner was lovely ... Read More
I did explore Paris before embarkation. Saw all the local attractions and enjoyed the local restaurants. Did not like having people smoking in restaurants, hopefully this will be addressed in the near future. Welcome dinner was lovely with the beautiful city as a backdrop. . Dining experience was very good. Entertainment was good and enjoyed Chef’s cooking experience. Service was excellent. Some of the ports were littered with rubbish but that was not Scenic’s problem, local authorities should look into this problem. Shore excursions were very good , except the day of the Somme Battlefields excursion, the restaurant that day was not up to standard, food was terrible and were not offered anything other than the local cheap red wine. Embarkation and disembarkation went very smoothly, thanks to the Cruise Director. Cabin was clean and very comfortable , servicing the cabin was prompt , with friendly service by staff. All in all, a very enjoyable cruise and I would highly recommend this trip. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
Our cruise was wonderful! From the moment we stepped on board we were treated like royalty by the staff. We especially enjoyed Patricia, our cruise director. Her attention to us and our needs was top notch, and Viking if lucky to have her ... Read More
Our cruise was wonderful! From the moment we stepped on board we were treated like royalty by the staff. We especially enjoyed Patricia, our cruise director. Her attention to us and our needs was top notch, and Viking if lucky to have her on staff. The service was excellent and we even made some friends with staff and guests! I loved the dining options...al fresco, nothing but great views, small and large tables depending on your mood. Kind of felt like a place "where everybody knows your name" and I can't wait to go again. Best part is, you feel like a tourist but get a relaxing vacation all at the same time. Many times we opted out of excursions just to sit on top of the boat and watch the beautiful scenery slide by! Don't miss booking a room with a "juliet" balcony. The option to open the sliding glass door and watch the world go by morning, noon and night was amazing! Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
Chose cruise to visit places we had not been before. For most part enjoyed our trip but: Buffet - hot food was cold - cold food was warm - salad bar was good. Dining room meals good Shops - lots of booze, candy, jewelry, clothes, ... Read More
Chose cruise to visit places we had not been before. For most part enjoyed our trip but: Buffet - hot food was cold - cold food was warm - salad bar was good. Dining room meals good Shops - lots of booze, candy, jewelry, clothes, souvenirs, etc. - first night someone asked for halls candy for sore throat - not available - week later heard same question and same response. Entertainment was good. Excursions very expensive and not accurately described. Travel time for excursions did not leave enough time to actually see what you went to see. Ship breakdowns frustrating, onboard construction and refurbishing interfered with trip. Captain kept us informed of problems but $100.00 rebate was a joke. Missing Guernsey was a highlight for us and we missed it because of ship breakdown and bad weather. Appreciate safety concern BUT. Understand Guernsey is quite often missed as it is to rough for Tenders so why continue to include it as a stop? Noticed immediately upon getting on ship a lot of people with terrible deep cough, some wearing masks. We took all precautions to wash hands regularly and avoid sick people BUT on Thursday June 13 we started with sore throat and by Saturday the cough. Where able to do Edinburgh but glad Sunday was sea day. 18 Hour travel time home on Monday was horrendous. Emergency Room Tuesday morning - we both have pneumonia and still recovering three weeks later. How many other people from this Cruise are experiencing the Will never travel with Princess ever again and will not recommend it to anyone. Read Less
Sail Date June 2019
Everything was wonderful, from the time we embarked in Paris until the end of our cruise. The ship is beautiful with spacious public areas and our cabin was very comfortable. I really enjoyed our own little balcony ! Dining was delicious. ... Read More
Everything was wonderful, from the time we embarked in Paris until the end of our cruise. The ship is beautiful with spacious public areas and our cabin was very comfortable. I really enjoyed our own little balcony ! Dining was delicious. We quickly made new travel friends and started dining together. We had good entertainment, and learned about the local culture in the process. We could not have had better service. We particularly appreciated Jorge, who always seemed to enjoy wherever we needed him! The ports and shore excursions were terrific! They were well planned and executed. I remember how we felt seeing the beach at Normandy and visiting the cemetery where so many Americans lie. It was so special, as we were there the week before D-Day and we actually have relatives who landed there 75 years ago. Paris is beautiful, but the best was seeing Monet’s gardens. What gorgeous flowers and the kitchen was to die for, with the blue and white tiles and copper pots. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
We chose our first Princess Cruise because we were celebrating my husband’s retirement - and we always wanted to visit Scotland and Ireland. We arrived in London 5 days early and visited the major tourist attractions. A Princess bus ... Read More
We chose our first Princess Cruise because we were celebrating my husband’s retirement - and we always wanted to visit Scotland and Ireland. We arrived in London 5 days early and visited the major tourist attractions. A Princess bus picked us up at Victoria Station and drove us to Southampton. Embarkation was very organized. We had to wait awhile, but chairs were provided and we were called in groups, so not too much standing in line. Our balcony stateroom was located on Deck 15 forward. It was clean and nice, and we loved the location. Our room steward was efficient, for the most part. We only saw him on check-in day. We asked that ice be provided each day, and he took good care of us for most of the cruise. However, the last few days, he took the ice bucket away and never brought ice again. There was an awful smell in one section our hallway, that never went away. It smelled like the carpet might have molded. We had to walk through that area coming and going to our room. It was disgusting. The people on this cruise were almost entirely quite old. We are 60ish - and were some of the youngest. I did see a couple of teenagers - who were probably bored to tears. This meant a lot of canes and scooters and slow walkers. They held up lines and elevators, and much patience was required on excursions as they took forever to load and unload buses. Many were very rude as well - cutting in line and ignoring instructions. The excursions were good, for the most part. We enjoyed the places we visited. Often, however, our play time was cut short - we would gather in a designated area on the ship and wait for our group to be called - then follow the leader up and down stairs to get off the ship and to our tour busses. Alternatively, we would follow that procedure to get on tenders - nightmare! There were not enough tenders, which meant long waits to get ashore and load the busses. All of this meant that the excursions sometimes got a late start - and we had very little time to shop or see anything on our own. If I had it to do over, I would definitely explore booking excursions through local companies - rather than Princess. We could have been off the ship earlier, had more time on shore, and saved money. The food was okay - but the choices were limited and became quite boring. If you want steak, visit the premium steak house onboard - do not order steak in the main dining room. I tried it twice and was thoroughly disappointed both times. The steaks were tough, tasteless, and full of gristle. I do highly recommend the creme brûlée, however. Room Service is still free - some cruise lines are charging a fee. But, the menu is extremely limited. Nothing memorable about the food at all. Entertainment on the ship was just boring. They definitely played to the older crowd - big band music, bingo, crafting get togethers, boring stage shows. I looked forward to the outdoor movies on deck. However, it was too cold on deck in the evenings and you couldn’t clearly see the screen during the day. We spent most of our ship time resting, watching tv, and eating. There wasn’t much else interesting to do. Staff was mostly efficient, but not too friendly. Unlike other cruises I’ve been on, the staff did not seem to enjoy their jobs, and were not particularly interested in the cruisers. They did their jobs, but gave nothing extra. Disembarkation was very smooth and quick. We had breakfast, met at our assigned location, and were quickly off the ship. The luggage was organized, and we met our driver in very short order. Overall, we enjoyed our trip because of the wonderful people in England, Ireland, Scotland, and France. We saw wonderful buildings and exhibits. I’ve always loved cruising, but this particular ship, with its boring entertainment, ho-hum staff, and limited food selection, was nothing special. I need to add - we were hot the entire time we were onboard. We lowered the temperature in our room as much as possible, but had to open our balcony door for cool air. All of the public rooms were hot, and we sweated through every meal. For that reason alone, I would not repeat this cruise. Read Less
Sail Date May 2019
We just returned from another perfect cruise with Uniworld but it’s what we expected being return customers. Every time we get on board it’s like coming home again, we always see some cruise members from a previous cruise on other ... Read More
We just returned from another perfect cruise with Uniworld but it’s what we expected being return customers. Every time we get on board it’s like coming home again, we always see some cruise members from a previous cruise on other boats. This time it was the head chef and our waiter Alexander. This particular cruise pays special attention to the D-Day landing sites in Normandy. For those of you interested in history and the sacrifices our young men made to free the world of terror, this is the cruise to take. Being there in person gives you a whole different perspective than what you got from the history books. On board we enjoyed a plethora of gourmet meals accompanied by a superb selection of quality wines. Try the La Cave du Vin for cozy, hands on, fine dining in the boat’s wine cellar. Book as soon you get on board because it fills up quickly. There is an extra charge for this but worth it. And the bar in the Salon Toulouse will amaze you with the selection of fine beverages from all over the world. Cleanliness on board is beyond reproach as is the friendliness and the service of the entire crew. Special thanks for service above and beyond go to our Hotel Manager Maria and our waiters Nikolay and Alexander. And the shore excursions are always well orchestrated and professionally guided through interesting places. But as with everything in life there are always some glitches, minor in this case but annoying. This boat was just refurbished so they added some “improvements”. The faucet in the bathroom sink has separate hot and cold water controls. The hot water is scolding hot so it takes you a while to temper it to a usable temperature with the two handles. But the bigger problem is the water spout which comes out from the wall and almost to the outside edge of the sink. It makes it impossible to bring your face over the sink and to bring the water to your face to wash it. You have to stand back and the water goes over your feet and the floor. Hint to the designers; shorten the spout by at least six inches. The other goof is the new “Do not disturb” notification. They’ve done away with the door handle sign and replaced it with an electronic touch pad inside the cabin. However, this very sensitive unit is just below the wall slot where you insert the key card to turn on the room utilities. It is almost certain that you will touch it inadvertently and alter the setting when you insert and remove the key card. And when the card is in the slot it hides the indicator light. So when we didn’t get our cabin made up for two days I went to the reception desk for an explanation. They knew immediately what was going on because it has happened to others and they very kindly explained how this new system functions. And lastly, the room thermostat control is another touch pad unit. It is preset to 23 degrees Celsius and has a wide range of temperature settings. But regardless of what temperature you change it to the room temperature never changes from the preset temp. But these minor glitches will not deter us from sailing on Uniworld again. As a matter of fact, while on board we booked the Bordeaux cruise for May 2020. Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
We wished to learn about the Normandy Invasion and enjoy another river cruise. The Normandy day trip was quite emotional and many passengers were there to honor relatives and veterans. The itinerary, staff, Program Directors and food ... Read More
We wished to learn about the Normandy Invasion and enjoy another river cruise. The Normandy day trip was quite emotional and many passengers were there to honor relatives and veterans. The itinerary, staff, Program Directors and food were all outstanding. Christophe Leger was our leader and a passionate traveler, historian, and all around good guy. His concern for our welfare, attention to details, and his enthusiasm for French culture and history all contributed to a very enjoyable cruise. A nice touch was the added shuttle bus for those of us who arrived a day early to give us 2-1/2 hours in Paris for a walk-about and a café lunch. This was a nice surprise. Also on departure day, GCT provided an employee to greet us at CDG to point us to the correct departure counters. That place is humongous! I nearly hugged the guy! I suggest asking for a top deck cabin on the right-hand side, as we tied up 3 times to another boat and had to keep our curtain closed during the day. Also when the Eiffel Tower lights up, you can't see it from your port-side cabins. Another suggestion: for the wonderful home-hosted visit, the bar staff onboard had gift wrapped bottles of wine. Our family was enthusiastic to collect various wines and this was an easy solution to bringing a hostess gift. We booked this cruise at the last minute and yet all details were handled well. You can't go wrong with Grand Circle Tours. This is go-to tour company! Read Less
Sail Date March 2019
Since we were on this cruise 6 years ago on one of the smaller ships we thought we would try it again. We stayed on our own in Paris for three days with another couple. Took a cab to Le Pecq, which only cost 44 euro. Le Pecq was a nice ... Read More
Since we were on this cruise 6 years ago on one of the smaller ships we thought we would try it again. We stayed on our own in Paris for three days with another couple. Took a cab to Le Pecq, which only cost 44 euro. Le Pecq was a nice surprise. A Mono Prix store was right across the street from the ship for any items you may have forgotten, a full grocery, clothes, toiletries etc. Up the hill is St. Germaine en Laye, lovely town. Easy to walk to or back, but need to use quite a bit of stairs. They had a small but nice Christmas Market. The Rolf is the same long ships that we have been accustomed to, comfortable and easy to navigate. The Chef, Restaurant manager were excellent, both from Greece. The restaurant staff was excellent too! We were able to take the Normandy Beaches Commonwealth tour and it was fabulous. We had done the US tour 6 years ago. We saw the Bayeaux Tapestry and that in itself was amazing and so was the town of Bayeaux. The Canadian museum was touching especially the movie at the end, all staffed by young Canadians. Our guide was a professor at the University and he was very, very good. In all another great Viking cruise, next year the Duoro! Read Less
Sail Date December 2018
The Parisian Royal Holiday cruise travels from Paris to Rouen and back, spending more days in Paris than a similar cruise that goes from Paris to Normandy. We chose it because of the length of the Paris stay and a big plus was the ... Read More
The Parisian Royal Holiday cruise travels from Paris to Rouen and back, spending more days in Paris than a similar cruise that goes from Paris to Normandy. We chose it because of the length of the Paris stay and a big plus was the ship's berth on the Seine with a view of the Eifel Tower. We also prefer river cruising because the ships are more intimate and generally have fewer than 200 passengers. Getting to know new people and building relationships is much easier in a smaller venue. Our airfare package include transfers to/from Charles de Gaul (CDG) airport which is a good distance from the ship berth, but was accomplished with speed and comfort. The cruise includes visits to Christmas markets in Paris and Rouen, although the Paris markets were somewhat disappointing. The local tours included visits to 3 different chateaus with an evening concert at one and a private reception at another. The highlight tour was the Versailles Palace with a tour of the private royal apartments as well as the rooms open to the general public. We were also able to enter the Palace through a group tour door that bypassed the long entrance line. The ship was decorated for the holidays, the cabins were comfortable and the bathroom fairly spacious. The ship's crew was very friendly and helpful and all living areas could be reached by elevator, which was especially helpful since one member of our party had a broken foot. The injury did create some issues with tours that involved cobbles and long walks since this cruise, unlike others we have made, did not have tours to accommodate "gentle walkers". Using a wheel chair to improve mobility was not an option. The local tour guides were knowledgeable and most were fluent in English. Most days there was free time to pursue your own interests, especially in Paris, and the ship offered optional tours at additional cost including a Rolls Royce night time tour of Paris (if you were so inclined). For us, the tour highlights, in addition to Versailles, were the Rouen Christmas Market, the tour of Notre Dame de Paris, the Paris Opera House, and a night tour of Paris holiday lights in the major shopping areas concluding with the Eifel Tower light show. We also considered it a plus that the cruise was "all inclusive" so we didn't have to keep money on hand to tip the tour guides, bus drivers or ship's crew. In addition to the wine and beer served at lunch and dinner, mixed drinks were also covered making the trip more enjoyable. Most evenings there was entertainment in the lounge and before dinner the cruise director gave an overview of the next days tours. The food on board was somewhat a mixed bag. Breakfast had similar offerings each day that included eggs, meat, potatoes, cereal and a variety of breads. The food offered at dinner was generally unique and even included frogs legs and escargot on one occasion. The non-meat or fish dinner option was usually pasta which got a little monotonous. If I had to criticize anything it would be some of the lunches. It became obvious that a part of the lunch offering was recycled from the previous evening dinner. While I understand the economy of this it did get a little predictable. Read Less
Sail Date December 2018
We had received brochures from Viking for several years, but until we both retired we didn’t take them “seriously”. Once we made the decision to book a cruise we researched the options, spoke with friends who had taken Viking trips ... Read More
We had received brochures from Viking for several years, but until we both retired we didn’t take them “seriously”. Once we made the decision to book a cruise we researched the options, spoke with friends who had taken Viking trips and chose the Rinda Cruise along the Seine. The trip was beyond our expectations...the food, the accommodations, the attention to detail. We felt so comfortable on the excursions, liked the “audio-box” communication on the excursions, the staff were terrific, the food great. The itinerary sheets delivered to our room for the next day were very helpful and the evening meetings pertaining to the next days’ excursions were very appreciated. We intend to take another Viking Cruise in the future, although at this time we have not booked a trip....personal health issues have a bearing.....We highly recommend the Viking Cruise excursions! We hope to take a cruise along the Rhine River and maybe a Southern France trip. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
This was actually our 2nd Viking River Cruise as two years ago, my classmate and I also did the Viking River Cruise to Eastern Europe. Obviously, we enjoyed our pre-cruise stay in Prague and the cruise itself to Budapest, Croatia, Serbia ... Read More
This was actually our 2nd Viking River Cruise as two years ago, my classmate and I also did the Viking River Cruise to Eastern Europe. Obviously, we enjoyed our pre-cruise stay in Prague and the cruise itself to Budapest, Croatia, Serbia and Bucharest. And this October, six of us classmates will be doing the Rhine Ruver Cruise. Needless to say, we are happy and enjoy doing the Viking River Cruises! During our first cruise to Eastern Europe, we didn't have the leisurely walk which we joined during our Paris cruise. We hope you will have the leisurely group again for the Rhine Ruver cruise this October as the six of us classmates are 76 years old by then. In both cruises, we were very pleased with the tour guides. Please note that we have done leisure cruises with Holland America, Princess, Norwegian and Royal Carribean cruise ships since 2010. Viking Cruise is the only River Cruise we have joined and are very happy and satisfied overall. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
My wife & I chose Scenic & the Scenic Gem as a retirement celebration & going to places on our bucket list in France. The entire experience was superb starting from the pickup at our hotel in Paris at the time designated thru ... Read More
My wife & I chose Scenic & the Scenic Gem as a retirement celebration & going to places on our bucket list in France. The entire experience was superb starting from the pickup at our hotel in Paris at the time designated thru to the final disembarkation. The meals were well done with choices at every meal, great service, friendly polite & professional staff. Our cabin was very clean & looked after every day. The tours were as stated, on time, well organized, with very professional & knowledgeable guides. Off ship meals were well done & with no hiccups. The cruise director was on top of everything & kept the passengers updated daily on the next days activities, in addition to printed itineraries delivered each evening with the turn down service. There is entertainment every evening with some being a resident pianist & other nights bringing other groups on board. Scenic seems to aim at the retired market & hits the mark. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
We chose this cruise mostly for the itinerary, and because we had such a great time on Viking's "Grand European". This was the first leg of "France's Finest" for us. While the trip was enjoyable, I ... Read More
We chose this cruise mostly for the itinerary, and because we had such a great time on Viking's "Grand European". This was the first leg of "France's Finest" for us. While the trip was enjoyable, I wasn't impressed with some of the included excursions. I think I've toured enough churches, castle ruins and palaces to last the remainder of my life! There wasn't enough free time at some of the ports. Favorite stops were Giverny; Rouen; and the beaches at Normandy, but there was not nearly enough time at the D-Day Museum. I would love to return to that area at a more leisurely pace. The food on the Rolf was good, but not memorable. I found the Program Director to be overbearing, sometimes to the point of being annoying. The majority of fellow passengers were older (we are in our early 60s). Our pre-cruise extension in Paris was delightful. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
This was our first river cruise, but we have been on 5 ocean cruises, and this was far more intimate and relaxing. We explored Paris for only one day before the cruise. Embarkation and disembarkation could NOT have gone smoother, with ... Read More
This was our first river cruise, but we have been on 5 ocean cruises, and this was far more intimate and relaxing. We explored Paris for only one day before the cruise. Embarkation and disembarkation could NOT have gone smoother, with the Avalon staff meeting us immediately upon arrival, and seeing us off after the cruise. The ship, Tapestry II is a cozy and comfortable modern home away from home. The cabin and amenities were top notch. Dining was a pleasant experience at EVERY meal with fine food, and a wonderfully attentive staff. Our galley tour was eye opening, and a marvel to behold. Shore excursions were as advertised, with an emphasis on explanations of the sites, a fine selection of sites, knowledgeable, and friendly local tour guides. Our transfer to the airport was professionally handled, with our cruise director making sure that we saw that our luggage was totally on the van. We met many of the other people on board, and they were extremely pleasant. Casual dress was a definite plus, and not a gown or sport jacket were necessary. We would definitely cruise Avalon again. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
We chose this cruise because it included Paris, Normandy beaches—and then, on part two, Provence—Arles and Avignon. On a prior cruise—“Romantic Danube”—we particularly enjoyed stops at smaller towns along the river. This trip ... Read More
We chose this cruise because it included Paris, Normandy beaches—and then, on part two, Provence—Arles and Avignon. On a prior cruise—“Romantic Danube”—we particularly enjoyed stops at smaller towns along the river. This trip did have those stops, and we liked them a lot! Every tour guide we had was EXCELLENT. The on-board cuisine did well to give us what would be “local fare.” The only meal I really did not like was NOT due to flavor, but due to “logistics”—that is, serving a meal that was totally—i.e. all courses—buffet style was not good. Cumbersome, slow, and not as conducive to a good sampling of the local fare as I think Viking thought it was. All of the included tours we went on were VERY WELL led, with guides who were personable and knowledgeable. Our only “glitch” was not being fully informed about our train “get off” point in Lyon—our guide did tell us to get off at Lyon the last train station, but did NOT tell us that Lyon had. TWO rail stations. So we got off the train when it arrived in Lyon. This was not right! While the subsequent scramble we experienced to get from Lyon rail station #1 to the docking point for our Viking boat was an adventure, I’m not sure all Viking travelers would have recollected it in such amusement as did we! It’s great to “let go and let Viking” in terms of most ALL of the travel details. Thank you! Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
My wife andI have made many ocean and river cruises. Our latest trip on the Avalon Tapestry II has been the best ever. The route is Paris to Normandy with many charming and informative stops. The guides provided by Avalon were without ... Read More
My wife andI have made many ocean and river cruises. Our latest trip on the Avalon Tapestry II has been the best ever. The route is Paris to Normandy with many charming and informative stops. The guides provided by Avalon were without exception top flight. The only negative was the 5 hour round trip on a bus to get to Omaha Beach. Listening devices were provided fo all guided tours and they worked marvelously l. The personnel on this ship are extraordinarily thoughtful. The food is as good as Oceania and special effort is made to cater to special diets. All the public spaces are well maintained and put the passenger at ease. Our room was well designed with plenty of closet and shelf space. The bathroom was smallish but well designed, with a great deal of space to lay out personal items. Because we booked late we had a room with just a high, not full, window. But there were plenty of comfortable chairs on the upper deck, and the windows in the interior public areas provided a full view of the passing shore line. The cruise director provided a lot of good information without the false heartiness so many of that breed are prone to. The dress code was very relaxed without a sports jacket in sight. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
My wife had never been to France even though we’ve travelled on six continents. So we planned this week on the Rhône to be followed by a week on the Seine, and then a week in an apartment in Paris. We arrived in Avignon a day early ... Read More
My wife had never been to France even though we’ve travelled on six continents. So we planned this week on the Rhône to be followed by a week on the Seine, and then a week in an apartment in Paris. We arrived in Avignon a day early and stayed near the dock. In the morning I walked to 5he ship and was pleasantly surprised that our room was ready. The Viking employee that helped us with our luggage was one of our waiters from the Grang European Viking cruise we had taken two years before. Surprisingly, he remembered us! As usual, the tours were well organized and interesting. We didn’t do any of the optional tours but since our ship was well located, we were able to entertain ourselves in the towns we visited. The ship was well maintained. No nicks or scuffs or other signs of wear. The food was outstanding. I also thought the evening entertainment was good, but the tv coverage wasn’t up to the standard of our previous trips with Viking. If you’re interested in France, I’d recommend this trip with Viking. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018

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