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93 Viking River Porto (Leixoes) Cruise Reviews

We have traveled on 2 other Viking cruises and had a wonderful time. Great wine choices, lots of local food offerings and beautiful ports of call that we were able to explore in the evening. Since we had heard so many wonderful things ... Read More
We have traveled on 2 other Viking cruises and had a wonderful time. Great wine choices, lots of local food offerings and beautiful ports of call that we were able to explore in the evening. Since we had heard so many wonderful things about Portugal, we thought the Douro would be a good choice. None of these things held true for this trip. The same wine was served every night. Food was average. We were a group of 10 that were linked in our reservation - but we still needed to fight for a decent table each evening for dinner. Why couldn't we sit at the same table that fit us all? Excursions consisted of long bus rides and several times we drove longer to meet up with the boat in a different location. Not really the "luxury experience" Viking said they would provide. The biggest hassle was with Viking and Iberia Air. We paid the fee to work directly with Air Plus, so that we could get the flights we wanted. I received email confirmation of flights and seat assignments. But on departure day found out that Iberia does not hold seats unless they are paid for - which Viking does not do, even though we had paid the trip off months in advance. Why don't they pay for the seat and avoid the customer getting stuck by the bathroom or in a middle seat, especially when they paid to work with the Air Dept. Lack of transparency. Totally not luxury and very disappointing. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
We started the trip with a non-stop flight from Newark to Lisbon. We upgraded to Economy Plus for the extra leg room and enjoyed a smooth flight. We landed in the early morning and after clearing passport control we were met by Viking and ... Read More
We started the trip with a non-stop flight from Newark to Lisbon. We upgraded to Economy Plus for the extra leg room and enjoyed a smooth flight. We landed in the early morning and after clearing passport control we were met by Viking and transported to the Hotel Tivoli Avenida Liberdade Lisboa. It was a lovely hotel and we enjoyed our stay. We arrived so early we had to wait a little until our rooms were ready. Since I am useless with no sleep we just sat in the lobby until our room was ready. Our room was facing the interior courtyard and there was some noise from the nightclub on the roof but I was so jet lagged I was able to sleep. The hotel was very nice and clean and the included breakfast was terrific. We found a very nice seafood restaurant down the street from the hotel and we enjoyed dinner there. The second night we ate at a place recommended by the hotel but that was not exactly what we wanted. The food was tasty but floating in a bowl of gravy. Our transfer to Porto was quite a ride but we did make 3 stops to break it up, a comfort stop , a stop for lunch and a visit to Coimbra University. The tour buses were very comfortable and equipped with a rest room and wifi. This made the trip easier to bare. Our arrival at the ship was smooth and we were given our room keys as we got off the bus. The cabins were all ready and everyone was happy to arrive and unpack finally. The meals on the ship were all very good, the weather was perfect. Cool in Lisbon and Porto and the much warmer as we got into the Douro Vally. One thing about the meals was that if you didn’t take then Chef’s suggestion he took it personally. I had duck one day and did not want the gravy. He became so upset and insisted the duck needed the gravy. It was just a personal thing I don’t care for gravy but he was acting like I suggested we go club baby seals. One night my husband ordered from the always available side of the menu. The waitress again was horrified and tried to get him to order something else. I just found that strange. The tours were all very nice my favorites were the dinner at Grahams and the Bread Bakery tour. When we were riding up to Grahams the tour guide told us that we probably didn’t know each other yet but when she picked us up at the end of the dinner we would be great friends and we were. A beautiful dinner in a beautiful place. The bread bakery was amazing. I love bread and this was the best bread I ever tasted. The lady took it right out of the oven and handed it to me. I had to grab some napkins to stop from burning my hand. I enjoyed the warm bread with butter and homemade jam. We did several wine tasting at wineries. The Sanderman winery was interesting though the ride up there was very scary. There was nothing bad that happened but I was nervous. The Viking drivers were very skillful and careful. How they negotiated the hairpin curves and the narrow roads in the big bus was truly amazing. They always got applause and a handshake when we returned. The day in Salamanca ,Spain was very nice. Plaza Mayor reminded us of Venice. We enjoyed a lunch there . Delicious and reasonable priced. We enjoyed the ship probably even more because we received an upgrade to a Veranda Suite. I am afraid I have been spoiled. The bed was comfortable and the room was spotless. Our cabin steward was perfect. She kept our room in tip top condition. The final day we were sadly transported the Porto airport for another direct flight to Newark. It was a wonderful vacation. I cant wait for my next Viking trip. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
This was our first river cruise so we asked friends for their recommendation. They had no hesitation in recommending Viking and particularly the river Douro. We departed Manchester on a KLM flight, changing at Amsterdam then onward to ... Read More
This was our first river cruise so we asked friends for their recommendation. They had no hesitation in recommending Viking and particularly the river Douro. We departed Manchester on a KLM flight, changing at Amsterdam then onward to Lisbon. The flights were comfortable and kept to the scheduled times. On arrival in Lisbon we were welcomed at the airport by the Viking representative who escorted us to the Viking coach for transfer to our hotel. We stayed 2 nights at the sumptuous Tivoli Hotel and , during our stay enjoyed a most informative conducted coach tour of Lisbon and the surrounding area. Following our stay in Lisbon, we traveled by coach to Porto where we were welcomed on board the "Osfrid" and ushered to our individual staterooms. The whole process of embarkation and disembarkation was handled with great care, Viking staff helping and guiding at every point. Our Journey took us up the river Douro, calling at vineyards, castles, places of worship, places of learning and all within a very informative and interesting environment. The guides were very experienced and knowledgeable. In addition to the inclusive excursions it was also possible to book additional ones to other places of interest, however, we never felt the need as the inclusive coach excursions proved to be more than enough to keep us occupied during the entire holiday. Our cruise took us toward the border with spain. We boarded our coach which crossed into spain to the stunning city of Salamanca. A city steeped in culture, history and with lots of interesting places to explore. A real gem. This being our first cruise, we weren't quite sure what to expect of the ship itself and were very pleasantly surprised to find that the ship glided so quietly and gently when underway and the docking/undocking at the various "ports" was so smooth that one was completely unaware that we had cast off! Travelling through the enormous locks was awe inspiring to say the least, such magnificent structures that raised the ship some 30metres on the larger locks. Life on board was idylic, the food was plentiful, the menus varied with lots of choice and the friendly staff were most helpful in every way. We enjoyed on board entertainment ranging from a demonstration of cork artwork to spectacular flamenco dancing. On our final day, after leaving for Porto airport one of our party suffered an injury just prior to boarding our aircraft which meant that we weren't allowed to fly. We rang the "Osfrid" explained our predicament and the staff arranged for a taxi to bring us back to the ship where we were welcomed back on board. As we relaxed over dinner the very caring staff (one of our tour excursion guides) spent the whole evening arranging for hotel accommodation in Porto, flights back to the UK and all transfers back to Manchester. I cannot speak too highly of the trouble taken to smooth our return journey. Would we go again? Most certainly, we really would love to repeat the same "River of Gold" cruise as there is still so much that we did not get to see that a repeat visit would solve. However, we decided to "expand our horizons" next year and have already booked a Viking river cruise to Eastern Europe. Read Less
Sail Date August 2019
This cruise was a Christmas/birthday present for my sister, who had never been to Portugal. It was my fourth visit to the country, but first to the Douro region. I have never "cruised", opting for more active adventures, on ... Read More
This cruise was a Christmas/birthday present for my sister, who had never been to Portugal. It was my fourth visit to the country, but first to the Douro region. I have never "cruised", opting for more active adventures, on land. But my sister's limited mobility made this a better choice. We were not disappointed. The ship was comfortable, with an elevator for those who preferred. It was spotlessly maintained. This was one of the final cruises of the season, yet the crew members were as fresh and enthusiastic as I would expect on the first cruise of the season. We enjoyed the attentive housekeeper assigned to our comfortable cabin. I was initially concerned regarding the Portuguese cuisine, but the ship's kitchen offered tastes of Portugal as well as standard simpler offerings, including vegetarian options. The guides for shore excursions were knowledgeable and enjoyable. I appreciate their sensitivity to those few with mobility limitations. A highlight was the overnight excursion to Salamanca, which did involve a long bus ride due to lock maintenance closures. Other than that, I did not find bus travel dominant. On-shore hotels (Lisbon and Salamanca) were excellent. As a first time cruiser, I especially liked the opportunity to enjoy the lounge, meet new people or be alone with a book. Even though this was a December voyage, thus cooler temperatures, my hours on the cabin veranda/patio were a delightful way to enjoy the river bank scenery. The flexibility appeals to different interests. Activities/entertainment in the lounge were educational and/or just fun. I would definitely go on a VRC again. Read Less
Sail Date December 2018
The ship is stunning and very well laid out. There is a large lounge and the sun deck has ample space for all 100 guests and has a (0.7 metre deep) pool. Cabins are a good size, well-appointed, and comfortable, but with no-where to sit, ... Read More
The ship is stunning and very well laid out. There is a large lounge and the sun deck has ample space for all 100 guests and has a (0.7 metre deep) pool. Cabins are a good size, well-appointed, and comfortable, but with no-where to sit, except for the balcony. There are no cabin Tea or Coffee facilities, although there is a 24 hour coffee & snack station outside the restaurant. Our cabin steward was probably the best that we have ever had, and we appreciated the Towel Elephant & Duck. The restaurant has plentiful selection of food, but with a variable quality. Breakfast is the most disappointing, with no freshly squeezed juices, poor fresh fruit and warm cooked food. The Eggs Benedict was my favourite choice, always piping hot and tasty. The Omelettes & Eggs were cooked fresh and looked good.Cremated Bacon was supplied for our American cousins. Wine was free-flowing, but sometimes they needed a little encouragement. There was a good Port Talk each evening before Dinner and the obligatory Newsletter, both of which were really helpful. Most of the Shore Excursions were really good, especially Salamanca and Lamego. Otheres were 'average' or 'poor'. Paid for ones were always excellent. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
Our Douro cruise was very good. the Douro river is quite scenic but we only cruised two days up river and two days back to Porto. The remainder of the cruise is spent on busses visiting places sometimes up to two hours each way. Every day ... Read More
Our Douro cruise was very good. the Douro river is quite scenic but we only cruised two days up river and two days back to Porto. The remainder of the cruise is spent on busses visiting places sometimes up to two hours each way. Every day the bus excursions were long and tedious. This was our third Viking cruise and you could not book with a better company. The entire crew are outstanding. Yet we will never take another river cruise for the following reasons. 1River cruises are very expensive for obvious reasons. 2 For about 6 to 8 weeks every year the rivers are too low to cruise. You won't know this until you arrive in Europe. Your 5 star luxury leisurely cruise will be a 2 star bus trip either staying at other ships moored at strategic locations or 3 star hotels. You will be exhausted moving every day with your luggage. 3 Balcony's are useless as you will be sandwiched between two other ships...no light, no view, no privacy. 4 You may no longer berth in the town but at an industrial mooring several km away from the action. You are totally reliant on Viking getting you into town on a bus. Now if you can handle this and be happy please book with Viking. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
This trip was wonderful. Our group, of four, did the pre-cruise stay in Lisbon. This gave us a chance to explore the city and learn about the history and culture. We also went to visit Our Lady of Fatima before we embarked the River Boat. ... Read More
This trip was wonderful. Our group, of four, did the pre-cruise stay in Lisbon. This gave us a chance to explore the city and learn about the history and culture. We also went to visit Our Lady of Fatima before we embarked the River Boat. This visit to the shrine was very spiritual to be on Holy ground. From there we embarked the River Boat, Torgil. From the moment we embarked to the disembarkation the crew was very friendly and very accommodating. The dinning was a great experience. All the food that I had ordered was fantastic and we did try the Portuguese entrées. But what made the meals special was the wait staff. The waiters and waitresses were all excellent and formed a special bond with them. All of the Staff were excellent from the Captain to the Executive Staff to the maids were All very Special. We loved Maria our cabin maid!! The entertainment was just great. We all had fun playing the games and listening to the piano player. The shore excursions were also great and just sailing on the river and taking in all the beautiful scenery of all the vineyards. The whole trip was wonderful. One way I can explain my experience is that I laughed a lot, ate a lot, drank a lot of wine and met many great people. What else could anyone ask for in a trip. Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
No! I'm not being funny with the title just honest. You will spend much more time on busses than you will cruising on the Douro. If like us, you understand that before you go you will not be disappointed. In fact the Douro is lovely ... Read More
No! I'm not being funny with the title just honest. You will spend much more time on busses than you will cruising on the Douro. If like us, you understand that before you go you will not be disappointed. In fact the Douro is lovely but only navigable for a short distance. Thus you cruise 2 days upstream from Porto, turn around and cruise 2 days back to Porto. This was our third Viking river cruise and we would gladly do a fourth. The staff and attention to detail leaves little to be desired. But please don't confuse this trip with the Rhine/Main/Danube. For a start there are no cute towns to explore along the way just small settlements often without a single shop, so you must take the excursion or remain on board and be bored to death. Another difference is that over the years whole fleets of ships are on the rivers. this means when you berth you may be sandwiched between two other ships. No natural light or view and you can't use the balcony. This applies to all ships. Meals were good but on this smaller ship of 106 passengers beware of the groups that can dominate such a small number of passengers. At times my wife and I were invisible at the dinner table as all our fellow diners were members of a book club and were discussing the books read during the year. Our valiant attempts to contribute drew a silent stare that said 'if we want your opinion we will ask for it'. Then there was the medical group that really did not want extra table companions but had to suffer them, then the group of two couples from the same English village that went to school together. I'm sure you get the point. This never happens on a large cruise ship. We solved it by rushing to the dining room to snare a table for four. Despite these minor problems we loved the bus trip with cruise extension. Viking are flawless and to be highly recommended. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
I had wanted to visit the Duoro for some time. I have not interest in port, but the red wines of the region are sensational, but little known. We enjoyed the cruising, great crew onboard. You need to get a balance between coach trips ... Read More
I had wanted to visit the Duoro for some time. I have not interest in port, but the red wines of the region are sensational, but little known. We enjoyed the cruising, great crew onboard. You need to get a balance between coach trips and appreciating the scenery as it passes by. Our main criticism of this cruise was the quality of the food, our expectation of restaurant quality food did not occur. On a £8,000 trip we expected better. Also, if you are thinking of going, book soon. The river is starting to get congested with boats, it can only get worse. This will mean more boats mooring alongside each other, this affects use of balcony and diesel fumes coming in the intakes for the air conditioning. But the crew will do everything in their power to help. Captain Placido, Alvaro, David, Monica, right down to the newest member of staff - Tazim, thank you. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
The cruise through the beautiful Douro Valley in Portugal was a thoroughly enjoyable experience. The scenery is breathtaking- in places the river is so narrow you can almost touch the shore - a major navigational feat for the captain. ... Read More
The cruise through the beautiful Douro Valley in Portugal was a thoroughly enjoyable experience. The scenery is breathtaking- in places the river is so narrow you can almost touch the shore - a major navigational feat for the captain. Since the Douro is a major wine producing region the shores are filled with almost continuous terraced vineyards. In spite of the hot summer the landscape was very green. The ship is small, accommodating only 106 passengers but it provides a feeling of a small community. The stops along the river offer opportunities to taste and observe the manufacture of the famous port wine as well as other wines, including moscatel. One stop included a trip into Spain for a day in Salamanca, home of the oldest university in Europe. There are included excursions every day as well as additional optional excursions so lots of activity to keep passengers busy. Or you can opt to enjoy the beautiful scenery and weather from the sun deck. Food on board was excellent; buffet service as well as menu options at breakfast and lunch and table service at dinner. As with every Viking river ship there is open seating at every meal. One dinner offered a complete Portuguese menu and was interesting. There was high quality service in every aspect from the cabin stewards to the dining room staff. Several educational activities were offered during the sailing periods - an informational talk on cork, olive oil tasting and a demonstration by the chef on how to make the addictive egg tarts. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
I had been to Portugal a few years ago and when I saw a Viking river cruise in Portugal, I immediately wanted to go. Even better, the next day this cruise was on sale and we were able to upgrade to a veranda suite which made the trip that ... Read More
I had been to Portugal a few years ago and when I saw a Viking river cruise in Portugal, I immediately wanted to go. Even better, the next day this cruise was on sale and we were able to upgrade to a veranda suite which made the trip that much more enjoyable. The hotel in Lisbon was outstanding as were the day tours. the coaches were impressive as well. Always immaculate and the drivers were not only well versed with the area, their driving skills were also impressive. On the ship, our crew was first class from the moment that we stepped aboard. The food was delicious with a special meal prepared each day along with the set menu that allowed you to always find something that you would truly enjoy at every meal. Every time I see a Viking commercial on TV, I immediately want to book another cruise. Read Less
Sail Date August 2018
We chose is cruise to explore northern Portugal, starting in lisbon with a few nights stay at the hotel Tivoli and then onto porto for our river cruise. The room that we were alicated on-board was clean and well designed although we did ... Read More
We chose is cruise to explore northern Portugal, starting in lisbon with a few nights stay at the hotel Tivoli and then onto porto for our river cruise. The room that we were alicated on-board was clean and well designed although we did notice a low drone of engines/generators running. The meals onboard were average at best. The evening entertainment was poor even by river cruise standards. The trips were well organised and with Vikings own coaches which were very nice. The problem for us was that we were in room 221 and at 05.30 the next morning the main engines started and the noise was terrible the whole room was vibrating. This is a veranda room which we found unusable as when we were going along the river the noise was unbearable and when docked was usually next to another ship. I wrote to Viking about the room and noise over five weeks ago but they never replied a bit disappointing really. The other thing about Viking is they never mention gratuities until you get your final documents and then charge 15 euros per person per day automatically to your bill on our cruise there was 103 guests and 35 crew so over a week that's 309 euros per member of staff and the staff at the Tivoli were quick to tell us that they were not part of the scheme and that we should tip them separately. I have booked my next river cruise with a company that has let me chose my room and gratuities are included in the price Read Less
Sail Date July 2018
I chose this cruise because Viking has a great reputation as a stellar cruise line. This was to be a memorable and expensive trip for my mom and me and we wanted to go first class! The service was excellent. The river boats are somewhat ... Read More
I chose this cruise because Viking has a great reputation as a stellar cruise line. This was to be a memorable and expensive trip for my mom and me and we wanted to go first class! The service was excellent. The river boats are somewhat small due to the size regulations of ships on the river (but not the guest rooms!) which made for a very intimate feel on board. It seemed that the entire staff learned each passenger's name by the end of the cruise, which was a nice touch. The food was superb and there was nothing that was missing. One could remain health conscious if they wanted to, but we went for it and enjoyed the amazing dessert foods too. I would totally do a river cruise again. I loved being in a new location each day and I really enjoyed traveling by boat on the beautiful Duoro River to each location. Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
Sailing on the Duoro River through the cultural heart of Portugal was a new, remarkably exciting, and luxurious journey for me and my husband. From the morning smiles, to our carefully crafted daily adventures, to our on-board lectures, ... Read More
Sailing on the Duoro River through the cultural heart of Portugal was a new, remarkably exciting, and luxurious journey for me and my husband. From the morning smiles, to our carefully crafted daily adventures, to our on-board lectures, we were treated to one great day after another! It is hard to identify the best part of our cruise since every day brought new adventures. However, we loved the day at the Bread Museum, could not get enough of the delicious food, wine and atmosphere at the winery, and felt that learning about cork, wine and olive oil enriched our lives! We were always told that everyone loves a Viking Cruise. Frankly I found that hard to believe ... until...I had my first-hand experience. It is true and more. Our Viking Cruise left us with great memories, new friends, and a desire to go on many more Viking River Cruises. Thank You, Anne and Walt Spector Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
Curious about Portugal and port wines, the small ship was ideal. Having cruised with Viking before, it was a natural to choose this cruise. Unfortunately, my pocket was picked in Lisbon, but the crew rose to the challenge and helped beyond ... Read More
Curious about Portugal and port wines, the small ship was ideal. Having cruised with Viking before, it was a natural to choose this cruise. Unfortunately, my pocket was picked in Lisbon, but the crew rose to the challenge and helped beyond our wildest expectations. In particular, Raquel Miranda, Anabel Silva, Rafael Camerlengo, and Marta Azevedo showed the highest professionalism and assistance ever seen in a hospitality environment. Viking is very fortunate to have them on the team. Dining room staff was excellent as well; very attentive to our preferences and always there to serve us with class and aplomb. Of course, the ship is exceptionally well cared for, and Captain and deck crew excellent. Due to high waters, our itinerary was modified slightly, and the crew responded with flying colors. Most of the guests embarked on an overnight to Salamanca, but we stayed on board at Pinhao and had a wonderful time! So easy to make new friends on a smaller ship, yet still have quiet time alone. Both my wife and I can't imagine having a more enjoyable experience river cruising! Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
Excellent previous experience. I like the river cruises. Viking has given us great experience all around: service, meals, rooms, tours, etc. We will try the ocean cruise next. It is hard to put in words but I will try: from the ... Read More
Excellent previous experience. I like the river cruises. Viking has given us great experience all around: service, meals, rooms, tours, etc. We will try the ocean cruise next. It is hard to put in words but I will try: from the moment we embarked, in Porto, Portugal, we we treated like VIP's. All of the personal was very attentive. I had a medical problem and receive very good attention with appointments, transportation and follow ups. The dinning experience was excellent with very good food, truly nice (not fake) service from everyone. There was no place where I did not receive the best attention. Highly recommended!!!! The tours were all planned ahead and well executed with excellent guides very fluent in English. And all the tours were included in the price, therefore I did not pay extra. The rooms has nothing else I will add. During the cruise in the river we had a fantastic view of nature. Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
After several longer river cruises (i.e., Budapest to Amsterdam) we thought that we might like what would be a much shorter trip (Douro river is only what, 125 miles long?) and kind of quirky itinerary; small towns and wineries with time ... Read More
After several longer river cruises (i.e., Budapest to Amsterdam) we thought that we might like what would be a much shorter trip (Douro river is only what, 125 miles long?) and kind of quirky itinerary; small towns and wineries with time to walk and explore. Wow did we like it! Beautiful countryside in Fall colors, visits to often tiny towns, and so on. Castelo Rodrigo, for example, is a hilltop hamlet with about 48 residents. We had time on our own in some very small towns to just wander. Very restful, actually Quite different from say, Vienna! I don't recommend this for one's "first cruise". Take a longer one, or several, with Viking and then try The Douro. Doing that really helped us notice the differences and fully appreciate the laid back leisurely nature of this trip. It is very well thought out and complete. I think you'll find it wonderful. As always with Viking there are little extras; to be met back at the ship with a Port wine toast, local foods acquired almost every day, and some unique entertainments. Portuguese Fado music. for instance. I HIGHLY recommend the post-river add-on trip to Santiago de Compostela in Galicia, Spain. The shrine of Saint James is not only the ending point of "The Way" pilgrimages, but also a UNESCO Heritage center. We loved the city and its foods. Tapas three times a day! Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
Past cruises were on Viking. We are spoiled, we wouldn't choose any other. The hotel in Lisbon was first class and the little outdoor market yielded some unusual treasures.Our cabin was fine and ingeniously designed, although we ... Read More
Past cruises were on Viking. We are spoiled, we wouldn't choose any other. The hotel in Lisbon was first class and the little outdoor market yielded some unusual treasures.Our cabin was fine and ingeniously designed, although we missed having a chair - something that was provided on previous cruises. Having a veranda is great for relaxing and watching the scenery. The dining is exquisite, with many many menu choices. The service is excellent. Waiters and waitresses go out of their way to be of assistance. The shore excursions were fine, and Fatima and Our Lady of Remedies were particularly appealing. There was one very scary trip up a mountainside and I think the cruise director should warn people ahead of time that it will be alarming. Many of us were unnerved, some to the point that they did not want to go back down. Anyone who is afraid of heights would be terrified. Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
Wanted to learn about Portugal and the port wine region of the Duoro Valley. Lisbon extension with included excursions and side trip to Salamanca, Spain were added bonuses. Great weather did not hurt. Day time cruising on the Duoro, ... Read More
Wanted to learn about Portugal and the port wine region of the Duoro Valley. Lisbon extension with included excursions and side trip to Salamanca, Spain were added bonuses. Great weather did not hurt. Day time cruising on the Duoro, because river boats can not travel at night, gave us lots of sightseeing opportunities on this beautiful river. Fantastic locks and excellent included excursions along the way. Splurged for the dinner at Graham's Vinum restaurant and was not disappointed. Thoroughly enjoyed the smaller ship. Viking always does an excellent job. The way they helped a man who was injured on one of the excursions was noteworthy. A security/translator and medical staff member went with the man and his wife to seek medical treatment and rejoined the boat later in the day. They even allowed them to stay an extra night on the boat to recuperate prior to leaving for home. When we were ready to leave on an earlier bus to the airport, Viking recommended that we relax in the lounge so we did not have to spend so much time at the airport. They then took just the two of us in a bus to the airport. The only negative was that the hotel was having an extremely noisy function until 2:00am on the night before embarkation - no sleep and no help from hotel staff in spite of calling the front desk multiple times - we were in an inside room overlooking the lobby/ballroom area. Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
Chose this cruise for its cruise destinations, size of the ship which is not overcrowded. The delicious cuisine on board and at local stops. Excellent wines from local vineyards. The comfort of the cabins on board were excellent. Great ... Read More
Chose this cruise for its cruise destinations, size of the ship which is not overcrowded. The delicious cuisine on board and at local stops. Excellent wines from local vineyards. The comfort of the cabins on board were excellent. Great entertainment nightly. Excursions were fantastic with free time. All bus transportation was second to none, drivers very professional. Our cruise director Patricia made our whole experience the best. What a wonder she was. She was our tour guide on all of our excursions. We chose for the extension before the cruise started in Lisbon which we toured on our own. when we arrived in Porto we handled by Patrica who was Vikings Cruise Director. She gave us a wonderful tour of Porto which she is a native and gave us a lot of information and a lot of great places to visit. Through the whole cruise she always had a smile on every tour and would also participate in activities on and off the ship. At night she would MC the nights entertainment, which was always fun.At the end of the cruise she was also stationed at the airport to make sure everything went smoothly. All of this has made this a wonderful cruise that you will cherish for a life time. Read Less
Sail Date November 2017
This cruise was on a smaller river cruise ship of a little over a hundred passengers plus about 30 crew. Service was very attentive without being too intrusive. The crew, particularly the guides were very well versed on the history and ... Read More
This cruise was on a smaller river cruise ship of a little over a hundred passengers plus about 30 crew. Service was very attentive without being too intrusive. The crew, particularly the guides were very well versed on the history and culture of the area. We took every shore excursion possible and learned a lot about viticulture, history, art, architecture, local food and wine. It was a fully immersed tour of the Duoro river. Upon arrival, we were shown to our cabin, which was on the very lowest level was quite comfortable. All of our luggage were there waiting to be unpacked.So convenient to unpack/pack just once! Since we were always on the go, whether on shore excursions or watching the scenery and the ship go through locks, we hardly spent much time in the cabin other than to rest up. Meals on board were very well planned. There were always options that included local fare. At meal times, we always had the option to sit at a table to meet other passengers or sit by ourselves. We enjoyed meeting a lot of the other passengers, and made new friends. The cruise director always had after dinner entertainment programs that gave us a glimpse of local culture, music, and arts. And they had a briefing every evening as to what we were to expect at our shore excursions the next day. Everything was orchestrated efficiently and on time - bus transfers, embarkation, disembarkation, etc. Planning on taking another Viking river cruise next year. Read Less
Sail Date September 2017
We chose the Viking River of Gold cruise on recommendation by friends and in place of our Elbe River cruise in 2016 that was cancelled because of low water. In order to ensure we would have airport transfers to and from the ship we asked ... Read More
We chose the Viking River of Gold cruise on recommendation by friends and in place of our Elbe River cruise in 2016 that was cancelled because of low water. In order to ensure we would have airport transfers to and from the ship we asked that Viking make our travel arrangements The start was a disaster. Viking had booked the last possible connection for us to Lisbon through Toronto which failed because of bad weather earlier in the day. Hotels in Toronto were fully booked so we spent the first night of our holiday with no luggage in a taxi going from motel to motel looking for a bed. The Viking help line informed us that due to our delay in arrival, the Viking transfer in Lisbon would probably not be available and we would have to make our own way to the hotel. Viking had also booked a 16 hour return itinerary which could have been competed in 8 hours with a more direct routing home. .We had to leave the ship at 3;45 AM on disembarkation day. We had tried well in advance to change bookings for a more convenient routing but, Viking replied that it was too late to alter the reservations. No doubt the disastrous travel arrangements colored our appreciation of the cruise itself. Despite that we can say there were many enjoyable aspects. The ship although small is well arranged, the staff of mainly Eastern Europeans is enthusiastic and wanting to help at every turn. The kitchen and menus are high average but there are not many local specialties to sample. Free excursions were offered every day and several of them were one-of-a-kind experiences you would not find elsewhere. The summer landscapes of the vineyards and olive groves were spectacular. There was a good amount of shade on the top deck to shelter from the blazing sun in the afternoon and the pool although only a meter deep provided welcome relief from the intense heat. One thing about the Douro is that even with 7 or 8 spectacular locks, the navigable portion is only 70 miles long so there is not much cruising. With 17 cruise ships on the river and few port facilities there are often two or three ships lashed side by side overnight in the dock obscuring river views from the common areas and rendering balconies virtually useless for those who seek a bit of privacy. Porto is the only city on the river but Viking offers a day trip by bus to Salamanca in Spain mid way through the cruise which is well worthwhile. For people who like to be cocooned in luxury, Viking is probably a good choice. If we use them again, however, we will make sure to book travel to and from the ship ourselves and would strongly recommend that others do the same. . Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
A wonderful trip! The staff in Lisbon and on the boat were wonderful. The daily excursions were entertaining and informative. The food was good, the drinks were good, the weather was good- it was an amazing trip. The hotel in Lisbon, ... Read More
A wonderful trip! The staff in Lisbon and on the boat were wonderful. The daily excursions were entertaining and informative. The food was good, the drinks were good, the weather was good- it was an amazing trip. The hotel in Lisbon, Tivoli was very nice in an ideal location. Make sure you visit the Sky Bar. The trip to Porto on a very nice coach with 3 stops was a great day. Porto is a neat city, with lots and lots of port wine. The staff on the Viking Hemming went above and beyond in every aspect, from a Pedro and Valter in the bar, to The cleaning staff to the Captain and his crew to the chef everyone helped make this trip wonderful. The majority of the guests were over 70 but active and fun. People were from the US, Canada, the U.K. . Europe and Australia. We stayed in 326 and it was a nice, comfortable room. The ship only sails during the day so no noises to keep you up at night. The excursions were enjoyable. Again, lots of wine and wine tasting. Many days were filled with cobblestone sidewalks. Confortable shoes are a must. Read Less
Sail Date July 2017
I was really skeptical coming into this trip. My grandma had told me that she loved the river cruises she had been on but that people my age don't typically go- that there would be all old people. BUT, within the first couple hours in ... Read More
I was really skeptical coming into this trip. My grandma had told me that she loved the river cruises she had been on but that people my age don't typically go- that there would be all old people. BUT, within the first couple hours in the city of Lisbon I fell in love. The food was incredible and the people taught me so much. We boarded the ship and I immediately was on first name basis with 30 of the 34 crew members. I LOVE THEM SO MUCH! I was not surprised my energy and youth kept the boat alive. Everyone from Marcio the bartender to Vitor the waiter who put up with my dairy allergy, to Jens, the manager, to Leandro the security night guard, was so welcoming, funny and nice. I could be myself. I also learned so much from the older people, having gone through so much of life already. We went all over the place but the hemming was unforgettable, we danced sang, ate, tasted olive oil and made custard. I fell IN LOVE with the crew and the people.I also got close to the bus driver Azy, and everyone on the ship. I don't know what I have to say to make you book your hemming cruise but all you need to know was that I made 32 family members on this trip and 100 friends. I cried my EYES OUT when I left and I am having withdrawal still. I eat at 7 (breakfast) and stick to the schedule even off the boat. I am going to miss Emanuel's playing or dancing the waltz with Marcio.The country is incredible. Also, I was fortunate enough to have my birthday on the last day (when we headed home) but they threw me a celebration the night before, Christovao and Vitor (crew members) decorating my table and giving me gifts. I WANT TO GO BACK!!!! Best experience of my entire life. Prettiest country. THE ROOMS ARE SO NICE TOO! And the food!!!! Jan, best dishes ever (the chef is also hilarious). Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
We would not normally have done this cruise, but it was for my Mother-in-Laws 80th and she wanted us there. We had a lovely time. Everything exceeded our expectations, from the boat, food, crew, and cabin. We have sailed Silver Seas, ... Read More
We would not normally have done this cruise, but it was for my Mother-in-Laws 80th and she wanted us there. We had a lovely time. Everything exceeded our expectations, from the boat, food, crew, and cabin. We have sailed Silver Seas, Regent, Uniworld, Princess, and other Viking Cruises, but this exceeded them all. The crew was amazing, always smiling and anything they could do for you, they would. The food and the house wine were both exceptional. Our only complaint were the excursion, they was lots of bus time and we don't like that, so we created our own tours, and did lots of walking. It just seems that more active excursion could have been offered. However; many people enjoyed the excursion, just not what we like. The common rooms were lovely and there was always plenty of room available and waiters on hand. I can not recommend more highly! Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
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