6 Prague Cruises for the Disabled Cruise Reviews

This was our first riverboat cruise. We had checked out some others cruises casually but couldn't get excited about any. We went to a presentation put on by Expedia Cruise in Courtenay, BC, regarding Scenic and the guy with the funny ... Read More
This was our first riverboat cruise. We had checked out some others cruises casually but couldn't get excited about any. We went to a presentation put on by Expedia Cruise in Courtenay, BC, regarding Scenic and the guy with the funny accent caught our excitement regarding the boat, the service onboard, and what we would see on the tour. We immediately started planning our cruise that we just got back from. I'm an old fart and my body shows it. The only part of the whole experience that was terrible had to do with the airlines and Amsterdam airport. I know you have to put up with the 9.5 hour flight from Vancouver, BC, to Amsterdam but I could hardly walk afterwards and it is actually kilometers between the international arrivals to the local carrier section. KLM nor the airport staff would assist me in getting transport over to the other side because I had not prebooked it. Coming back I prebooked assistance and that part went smoothly. Since I had already been up for approximately 30 hours, when we arrived in Prague, I immediately crashed (fell asleep on the lovely, soft bed) while me wife did the short orientation tour. My wife enjoyed Prague while I recuperated. I did go out once and enjoyed a little of the wonder of the city. I was a little concerned with everyone telling us to be careful of pickpockets! Breakfast buffet at our Marriott Hotel was excellent with lots of variety. Yumm! (I'm a foody addict) We got on the Scenic Amber in Nuremberg and I was impressed from the word go. The welcome seemed real and everyone was courteous and, for me, this is where the pleasureable adventure really began. I'm rambling a bit here so I'll try and condense the actual cruise.. I've been on big ship cruises before but not at the level of complete service as we got here. The things I especially like were: Cabin - the soft head and knee raising bed; the cozy balcony; the small fridge for cod drinks, replenished daily; Dining - exception meals with additional selections that you can order. They do cater to special food needs. For those of you that drink, there was a different red and white wine presented each day. You never had to worry about running out of wine, coffee, water. Room service always available; Onboard activities - were fun and relaxed.Richard (Otto?) was very personable and gave pertinent information on what was going on the next day or for that night. The cruise wouldn't have been as great without him. The evening lounge entertainment was fun to watch with local groups coming on board at each port; Ports and excursions - I commend the people that picked out the ports we visited, not too many and not too few. All the tour guides were not just informative but also very passionate about their city and country, nice to see and hear; Service - I have nothing to negatively say about the service. Everyone treated us with courtesy and as a person. We had our own butler who was ours 24/7 If we wanted. He actually complained to us that we weren't using him enough! I watch how staff interact with each other and all that I could see was friendly support and comradery between all levels of staff. They even all chipped in to take out the garbage! That's about all I have to say for now except that we didn't pay an additional penny for anything else except for gifts. So eat, drink as much as you want; go on the tours, see the concerts... all included! Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
We had done another Scenic cruise (Bordeaux) and decided to book an area in Europe we hadn’t seen. We chose to travel during the Christmas market season. I have some mobility issues, so feeling safe and secure is important. The ... Read More
We had done another Scenic cruise (Bordeaux) and decided to book an area in Europe we hadn’t seen. We chose to travel during the Christmas market season. I have some mobility issues, so feeling safe and secure is important. The wonderful staff and personnel on the Amber were amazingly attentive. If I even hesitated, there was someone at my elbow for buses, gangplanks, stairs, etc. No one hovered or was overly solicitous, but they always seemed to be there when I needed them. We plan to retake this trip in the spring/summer time to be able to see the gardens. The cruise director was a hoot! He was on top of everything. The entertainment was high quality. Service was extraordinary. Our shipmates included families with adult children, siblings, gay/lesbian, and couples from Canada, Australia, USA, and UK. Most had previous cruise experience. All in all, we find river cruising to be relaxing and one of the best ways to see Europe. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
We chose the cruise because of the cities we were visiting and the brochure which spoke to some education regarding the history. The service was wonderful. Food was good but definitely not exceptional . I like the concept of have ... Read More
We chose the cruise because of the cities we were visiting and the brochure which spoke to some education regarding the history. The service was wonderful. Food was good but definitely not exceptional . I like the concept of have beverages available during the dinner and lunch. The lounge was very comfortable and the front deck, when the sun came out ,was fantastic. It was a bit cool during the first half of the cruise so the top deck was not available. That and the locks prevented the top deck from being open. For the most part, the ship was lovely and very well attended to. Due to the brochures prior to the trip I expected more discussion regarding the city and the surrounds to be visited next, prior to the each excursion. There were announcements each evening prior to dinner, however the dialog was very difficult to comprehend/understand due to linguistics etc.With the only information to come was from the tour guides and the crowds of the excursion it became impossible to keep together and hear clearly what the guide was saying. The connection upon arriving at the airport was great and very organized. However the announcements prior to the first excursion were unclear and consequently we missed the first one we paid for and got on the wrong shuttle bus. For the staff standing on the stairs in lobby of the hotel and shouting out "instructions for the next event it was impossible to comprehend instructions with large groups of people and poor organization in that instance. The departure in Paris was quite different - it was a real nightmare with not nearly enough help at the airport. Our flight was canceled so we were hustled to another flight, but left with little an to no assistance. We were delivered to a little room for assistance but had no idea why and little knowledge of how to get to our plain. As it was we almost missed our flight causing a great deal of stress in an unfamiliar airport and staff who kept telling us we had to wait in line for a wheel chair which we did not need. The staff had no idea why we were left in a room with one service person (who spoke little Eng) and waiting for help. Viking really missed the mark on this issue as it was way to close to being a disaster for my us as well as another couple who were in the same predicament. Often the excursions were not given enough information regarding the difficulty walking etc. Quite often we got half way into a tour and found out we would not be capable to completing (i.e the Castle and Trier) We got up to the castle and then were told that the climb would be far too difficult for my spouse, so we could do nothing but sit and wait for all to complete the tour. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
I initially was approached by my 89-year-old mother, who wanted to take one last trip before she would be unable. I offered to be her traveling companion, not realizing where she intended to travel. I had only been on one cruise prior, a ... Read More
I initially was approached by my 89-year-old mother, who wanted to take one last trip before she would be unable. I offered to be her traveling companion, not realizing where she intended to travel. I had only been on one cruise prior, a Caribbean Cruise, on one of the larger vessels. So when she mentioned she wanted to take a river cruise, I really had nothing to base it on. My first overall impression, exhausting! Too much planned time, not enough free time. Having to set my alarm to 6:30 every morning of my vacation did not sound like my idea of a vacation. We were constantly being rushed from one event to another, catching buses, trying to keep track of tour guides in crowds. It rained our entire trip, and blue umbrellas were everywhere. We were constantly told to keep track of the 'blue umbrella's, that was difficult at best. Not being able to speak the language, not knowing where we were heading and keeping track of my mother, dressed in black, in a sea of black, was not good, when you lost contact with the blue umbrella guide! As for the knowledge of the guides, they were EXCELLENT. I would have preferred more time to explore rather than feel like we were in a race to get to one place to the next. Our mealtimes were pretty much set in gold, so if you wanted to eat a lite-fare early and then later, this would not be the case. The restaurant area was small, and the buffet line was always crowded due to the time constraints. If you arrived late, a lot of the items were already picked over or gone. My mother, who uses a wheeled walker, had difficulty getting items onto a plate and then move thru the line. So after the first few days, I would quickly eat first, then she would arrive and I would gather her breakfast or lunch items. Dinner at least was sit-down, and we were served. But I must say, overall, I was not impressed with the menu items. Fish was always overcooked and dry. Portion sizes were OK, but I am not a big eater. Sometimes nothing really excited me at dinner, because we ate at 6-7 pm, and I am usually a late afternoon dinner person. Lunch had a lighter fare served on the deck. We started using that for our lunch, to avoid the crowds in the restaurant area. I was quieter, more relaxing, and the views good. The staff that worked this area were always attentive and polite. Our cabin was in the 'cheap seats' as I referred to them. We booked late and very few options left. It was small, as expected, and since we really didn't spend a lot of time in it, it was adequate. The biggest problem we had was the diesel fumes that came in at night while going thru the locks. That was horrible. I finally complained about it after the 3rd night, and I was told the entire ship had that problem when in the locks, yet everyone I asked whose room was above the water line, said they never smelled any fumes. Either way, that was the worst. The beds were small, but OK, given the size of the room. I was surprised to find one night, that my sheets had been just flipped over when my mother had spilled something on the top of mine. It was tucked into the wall side, but the next morning when I noticed they had not changed them but hide the spill, I was surprised, to say the least. I get that this is not a big ship with many options, but clean sheets are expected for the price we paid. The onboard entertainment was OK - I understand and was not expecting the big cruise events. We did not spend a lot of time listening to the shows. I did enjoy the Port of Call information for our next day's excursions. The seating was not very comfortable. Barrel chairs are not meant for long sitting. Not for relaxing and reading a book. Couches along the sides were not that great either. The tables were so close, it was hard to move around if you were stuck in the middle. The Danube River was a surprise to me. I have never traveled to Europe and I guess I expected a lot more on the river. Many times looking out, I felt like I was traveling down the Wisconsin River in November. Cold, damp drizzle was a constant. The upper deck was pretty much closed. Yes, you could walk around the upper deck, but you had to bundle up. My mother never made it to the top. She was not able to climb the steps. Which is another issue I had; Our travel agency said Avalon would be able to accommodate my mother given her handicap. While they did have an elevator, on several occasions it was not working. She had virtually no assistance getting on or off the boat. She is proud lady, who does not see herself as being handicapped, Several of the tour guides you could see were not happy having someone using a wheeled walker on cobblestone streets, with lots of stairs to climb. Many of them made comments that this tour would be difficult at best. I believe both Avalon and the travel agency should have informed my mother this trip would not be good for her. Or maybe they did, and my mother did not pay attention. Either way, it impacted my enjoyment of the trip. The ports and shore excursions were OK - we did a few of the extras. They were OK too. Would I do another river cruise? Probably not. Maybe my expectations were too high. Maybe having to watch for my mother impacted my enjoyment. I did find Europe to be an incredible place and would love to go back. It opened my eyes to something I had never experienced prior. The food, the smells, the COFFEE, were my favorite parts. I wished the weather had been warmer, less damp, more sunshine - all of which obviously affected my enjoyment. For me, it was an expensive trip - I don't really know if I got my monies worth. Read Less
Sail Date October 2017
This was our first trip to Europe, so we wanted experience as much of Western Europe as possible. We added extensions to the cruise. Two days in Prague and we ended with two days in Paris. We wanted to travel by river boat because they ... Read More
This was our first trip to Europe, so we wanted experience as much of Western Europe as possible. We added extensions to the cruise. Two days in Prague and we ended with two days in Paris. We wanted to travel by river boat because they looked appealing. They had a limited number of passengers and we didn't waste time schlepping luggage all over. All the expectations were met by Viking and more. Greeting us on arrival, assistance through customs and the airport and their handling of luggage was very well done. The ships crew was outstanding. Members from all over the world, and all spoke english quite well with lovely accents. They were very personable and professional. They joked and smiled easily. The ship was modern and nicely appointed, cabins were small but we only used them to sleep, shower and change. They were clean and they responded to our every wish and need. The food was excellent all the way through. Dinning was easy and fun and a great way to meet a variety of the other passengers. Entertainment and Activities very good, both educational and fun. The Ports and excursions were outstanding. We saw castles and museums, historic homes and buildings, great squares with wonderful markets, vineyards and wine tastings. The excursions accommodated different levels of difficulty from easy to a nice workout. The director was very flexible with our group and we were her priority. Lovely women. The guides were very knowledgeable including discussions about the WWII. It was wonderful to see the care given to the burial sites in Luxembourg. The variety was great. We will go again and soon. River cruising is the best way to travel and Viking delivers extremely well. A quick word about their partnership with Air France. Best flight I have taken, made the trip over the pond seem like nothing. Read Less
Sail Date April 2015
We took a Tauck river cruise from Prague to Budapest on the Swiss Jewel. While this is a review of that cruise, we have a special focus. Gale has limited mobility, and the majority of the off-boat tours were done with her in a transport ... Read More
We took a Tauck river cruise from Prague to Budapest on the Swiss Jewel. While this is a review of that cruise, we have a special focus. Gale has limited mobility, and the majority of the off-boat tours were done with her in a transport chair pushed by her husband Bob. The chair has a thick cushion, which was critical for comfort. It has 12" foam wheels in the rear and 6" removable wheels in front. It collapses easily, and was stored in the reception area of the boat. Gale was able to move easily throughout the boat using her Canadian crutch, and took advantage of the elevator to get to the lounge and dining area. She also had to walk on and-off the boat, since the gang-plank was too narrow and steep for the chair. Also, there were times when two or three boats were docked next to each other, and this required going through (or up and over) one or two boats. The busses also have 4-to-6 steps, and the seats are not so easy to get into and-out of. That said, the trip was a wonderful experience, and the cobblestones the price of admission. Here is a non-typical tourist view. Our reviews of private time in Prague, the hotel, and two great restaurants (Imperial and Amade) are on TripAdvisor. Prague: The Hradcany Castle district has some of the worst cobblestones seen, and the walk was difficult. However, by cheating a bit and walking on the grass we were able to keep up with the tour. Also, the (wonderful) Tauck staff made arrangements all along the way for us to go in side doors to hidden elevators. Because of this, we missed very little of the tours. The Tauck dinner at the Lobkowicz Palace the first full day of the trip foreshadowed the special treatment we were to get throughout the cruise. The Lobkowiczes fled Prague just before WWII and did not return until the Soviet Union collapsed in 1989. The current scion, Boston born and bred, hosted the wine reception with a 40 minute review of the palace's history, followed by a private tour of the museum, followed by a private dinner in the Palace. If in Prague, do not miss this site. The third day of the trip was a killer. Bags packed by 7 AM, three-hour bus trip to Regensburg Germany, long tour over rough streets, boarding the boat and unpacking, dinner, and collapsing in bed late. Day was a blur, so no memory of Regensburg to share. We woke up in Passau, and in spite of the hills and cobblestones had a good touring day. These stones were smaller and flatter, and there was an HP entrance to the cathedral. Our small group tours with some great local guides were followed by on-board Austrian entertainment. Passau was in West Germany, so did not have the grayness we would see in areas controlled by the Soviets. Ironically, its Southern location, right on the Austrian border and next to Czechoslovakia, meant it was ignored and avoided much of the Westernization that the rest of Germany experienced. Tour day five was supposed to be a tour of Salzburg, but it was cold and very rainy. Given the long bus ride to and from Salzburg, she who would have to sit in the chair through all the rain made the right choice and stayed on the boat. The other passengers said that, given the rain and the crowds, we did not miss much. The next day was a delight, as the boat moved through the beautiful Wachau Valley to Dernstein -- a beautiful little town on the banks of the Danube. The countryside included terraced vineyards, ancient buildings, quaint villages, and beautiful post-rain lighting. The walk from the boat up to Dernstein was steep, and pushing the chair up the incline was a lung busting adventure. But the tour by another delightful local guide was worth it. The local Augustinian monastery was human-sized, and it (and the surrounding sights) fascinating to see and hear about. The delights of Vienna are well known, and need not be written about here. The city center is a 20-30 minute bus trip from the boat, and all touring sites are fairly easy to get to and around with the chair. Of note, Tauck had another of its private dinners, near where those horses dance, with spectacular music, opera, and ballet as entertainment. Oh, my! On the afternoon of the 2nd day in Vienna we departed for Bratislava. Upon arrival in the morning, we started with a riveting talk on life in Slovakia from the late 30's on by the head of the local tour guides. Bratislava was a nice surprise -- interesting to see and very easy to see. Still cobblestones, but the smaller, flat-topped ones for the most part. The cruise portion ended in Budapest. Can we tell you what hell Buda is for both parties riding and pushing a wheelchair? Some parts are wheelchair accessible, but most of the tourist areas feel like they left the rubble from the WWII bombings in place and expect people to deal with it. Pest, on the other hand, is very easy to move about. Not only flatter and smoother, but more accommodations for chairs. From the Marriott hotel in Pest, we had the benefits of the great view of the river and the hills of Buda, along with the ease of moving about the modern Pest. The visit to the State Opera House (requires two short sets of stairs before access to the elevator) ended with another Tauck treat -- beautiful music and opera from balconies at the top of the staircase. Our farewell dinner had, yes, more wonderful music as part of the Tauck treat. Lessons learned: it may not take a village, but it takes a boat-load of people to make for a wonderful trip. There was a large crew to keep the boat running, the food cooking, and the pusher's scotch glass full. There were four Tauck staff who managed all the events, and gave some wonderful and knowledgeable lectures on the boat and busses which enhanced all aspects of the trip. There were a different set of local guides at each stop, who usually gave very knowledgeable and fun tours. All told, the staff made a nice trip a wonderful trip. We made some friends on the trip among the other guests, and will keep in touch with them. But, all helped out at different points and none felt we slowed them down. When the front wheels of the chair got jammed going over a curb, someone was there to pull us out. When Gale was too tired to climb the steps, several lifted the chair and carried it down. When the view was blocked, people moved automatically to allow the chair through. Among the joys of the trip was the sad realization that we saw a few others in chairs, and a few struggling with dual crutches over the stones. What was a temporary problem for us must be a daily challenge for the residents. Thanks to Tauck for taking a risk and letting us go. Note that the other cruise companies would not accept chairs. Read Less
Sail Date June 2012

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