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36 France Senior Cruise Reviews

Our expectations for our cruise on the Rhone were high, but to our surprise Avalon exceeded these expectations consistently. The Poetry II provided superb accommodations in the Room 308 Royal Suite. Housekeeping and the wait staff were ... Read More
Our expectations for our cruise on the Rhone were high, but to our surprise Avalon exceeded these expectations consistently. The Poetry II provided superb accommodations in the Room 308 Royal Suite. Housekeeping and the wait staff were professional, thorough, and met any request quickly and completely. I would like to single out Jean-Loup Domart, our cruise director. He was professional, entertaining and totally focused on each guest and their comfort and satisfaction with all aspects of the cruise. Specifically, we were astounded by his follow-up on a personal problem that arose. We lost a souvenir hat on the ship and did not realize it until we were in Paris. Jean-Loup took our contact information and said that he would look into it. A month later, I received an email from him saying that the hat was found and he was shipping it to my home. Truly service above and beyond expectations. Jean-Loup represents the guest focus of Avalon and their goal to provide a superb cruise experience from food service, to meaningful and entertaining shore excursions. The typical guestroom is occupied by a couple whose age range is from 40 to 80. Most guests are in their late 60's to early 70's. Most guest are active and energetic and engage in offered activities. It was a diverse crowd form the US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and the UK. Finding a friendly and sometimes entertaining conversation was never an issue and dining companions were diverse and interesting. My wife and I would recommend and Avalon cruise and look forward to future trips on different rivers. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
We booked this cruise because of ratings. We did fibd out the ratings are only taken from Con de Naste magazine or whatever. The excursions were too short and a debacle. This ship had 0 and I mean 0 entertainment. I am 66 and was ... Read More
We booked this cruise because of ratings. We did fibd out the ratings are only taken from Con de Naste magazine or whatever. The excursions were too short and a debacle. This ship had 0 and I mean 0 entertainment. I am 66 and was youngest passenger! The wine ans spirit package was a disaster! Wines NO ONE EVER HEARD OF , and were vintages no one WANTED! I love a great wine list and this was the worst ever on 12 cruises! The overnite in Barcelona is not actually an overnite. You are up at 3am to get on a bus to airport so you can wait 3 hrs to board your plane! The ship itself has very sterile Ikea type furniture with no charachter. A bland version of futuristic. I am calling this my biggest waste og 8 plus thousand dollarrs I have ever spent on a vacation! Followed by 6700 wasted going to St. Lucia at sandals. When you come back from a vacation you usually reminisce about your time. When we got home we were just angry and wanted sombodys ass for making it a waste of money and time.! Customer service at viking is a total joke! All the offer you is more trips at half off! Let me be clear, if offered a free trip on ocean cruise on Viking ,I would not go! I mean it and am not kidding! Also, I forgot, no tv, always searching or out. Only one person can have internet per cabin! Im not kidding! So blatantly stupid! Read Less
Sail Date February 2019
Chose itinerary. Loved Provence countryside. Guided tours were always well paced, informative, and the guides were pleasant and very entertaining. The ship was contemporary simple; beautiful really with all the orchids scattered about. ... Read More
Chose itinerary. Loved Provence countryside. Guided tours were always well paced, informative, and the guides were pleasant and very entertaining. The ship was contemporary simple; beautiful really with all the orchids scattered about. Can't say enough about the responsiveness of all staff on the ship. Cruise director, Tony, was outstanding, very involved, always a presence, and attentive to any questions or issues. Our bags were handled every step of the way; from our arrival to our departure. We enjoyed onboard tastings....cheese, wine, and confections. As a frequent large ship cruiser I found the river cruise by comparison to be more relaxing, the ship more friendly, the service more personal. No problems with motion sickness as the ride was smooth and motionless. The many locks along the way were a surprise and added to our adventure. A few hours at an outdoor market offered up fresh bread, cheese, dried meats, honey, nugat, and fresh picked strawberries and other produce. Thoroughly enjoyed the cruise and will consider this type of adventure again! Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
We just returned from a Cannes to Cannes cruise which stopped at ports in Italy, Corsica and Sardinia with excursions to Pisa and Mt. Carbonne in Elba among other offerings. This was our 1st Clipper cruise but we will sign up for ... Read More
We just returned from a Cannes to Cannes cruise which stopped at ports in Italy, Corsica and Sardinia with excursions to Pisa and Mt. Carbonne in Elba among other offerings. This was our 1st Clipper cruise but we will sign up for another without a doubt. With about 200 passengers, a 3rd from the US and the rest from Europe mainly, it was easy and comfortable meeting each other especially with the open seating policy for dinner which we particularly appreciated. Due to minimal winds, we motored for the most part but when leaving a port, all the sails are down, the send off music plays and the magic is felt. We found the food very good and the room sizes quite adequate and comfortable. The staff from program director, waitstaff, cabin crew to the chef and captain could not have been more professional, friendly and attentive. We recommend this ship in particular but the Star Clipper line without reservation. The whole experience left me nostalgic and yearning to return even 2 weeks after it ended. Read Less
Sail Date October 2017
This is our third barge we've been aboard with European Waterways. Each barge was very different, but the experience, service and cuisine were superb! It was especially fun to meet Florian and Judith again after our trip in 2015 ... Read More
This is our third barge we've been aboard with European Waterways. Each barge was very different, but the experience, service and cuisine were superb! It was especially fun to meet Florian and Judith again after our trip in 2015 aboard La Belle Epoque. We brought along two other couples who were new to hotel barges. Now they are as excited as we are about this experience. Our chef on this trip, Ollie, made the experience special. His mantra "butter, butter and more butter" will ring in our ears for a very long time. His cooking is magical! If you want to be spoiled, pampered (11 guests with 6 staff to indulge your every whim) then European Waterways will exceed all expectations. The boats are kept in bristol-fashion. Shore excursions were fun, especially going to Thursday morning market with Ollie to gather food for the day's meals. Two luxury Mercedes passenger vans shadow each barge, ready to take you anywhere you would like to go. It was also great fun and welcome exercise to hop off the barge on one of the bikes provided for each guest. We immediately began planning for our next trip with European Waterways. An excellent value for money! Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
We wanted a short cruise just to try it out - and without kids squawking so we chose Saga. Saga supplies door to door transport - very poor on the way there with a bad driver who nearly got us involved in a major accident but good on the ... Read More
We wanted a short cruise just to try it out - and without kids squawking so we chose Saga. Saga supplies door to door transport - very poor on the way there with a bad driver who nearly got us involved in a major accident but good on the way back. Luggage transfer is smooth - once it is in the car you won't have to haul it around anywhere. We had a balcony cabin - not worth it on the ship as the balconies are about as wide as a window box. The cabin was a good standard, very clean with comfortable bed and a walk in shower. Ship has main Pole to Pole restaurant, Verandah casual (but menu same as Pole to Pole at night), East to West which is extra so we did not try, fish and chips by the pool and afternoon tea in two of the lounges. Food was really excellent - a talented chef on board - amd with plenty of choice. Dinner seven courses if you wanted it - with included house wine which was OK, lunch at Veranda either a choice of three cooked things, barbecue grill or an extensive cold buffet. Very pleasant eating outside here. Saga makes much of tables for two being available - but in reality there are very few. We were lucky, being put with two other people we really got on with. We sat together thoughout There is no tipping on Saga ships.Staff mainly Filipino and apart from odd language problems excellent. If wi fi is important to you avoid this ship as mainly it does not work and the so called computer exper is clueless. Two pools -outdoor very chilly, indoor quite warm. Tea and coffee is help yourself from a machine - which we did not like much. Drawing Room a very nice place to sit. Plenty of loungers around the ship. Clientele definitely on the elderly side - bit like a seagoing care home. Entertainment a bit on the seaside concert party side - and is in one of the large lounges as this ship does not have a theatre. A good choice if you want an easy trip and need to be looked after. Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
We took advantage of a special offer via Imagine Cruising a company we use and trust for this river cruise.We arrived at Lyon and boarded quickly and were very pleased at our cabin which was spotless and very welcoming with nice decor ... Read More
We took advantage of a special offer via Imagine Cruising a company we use and trust for this river cruise.We arrived at Lyon and boarded quickly and were very pleased at our cabin which was spotless and very welcoming with nice decor etc.We enjoyed the pleasant public areas and especially the sun deck with good seating and a lovely shaded area with also small but well presented pool to cool off in everyday.All meals and most drinks are included and were of very good quality.We enjoy different cultures and the food offered and like to try different tastes and always found something tasty at meal times.Salads.meats,fish desserts.cheeses including the breads were good.Tea and coffee are available at all times. We visited the South of France area from Lyon through Avignon,Arles etc down to the Port st Louis area which was the only port to disappoint.We think this last stop should be excluded from the itinerary as it's too industrial in this part.We enjoyed two trips outside of the towns that we moored in the centres.the first was to the Camargue area ending up in the lovely little seaside town of St Marie de la mer which is beautiful.The second was to Marseille but was too rushed and a bit frustrating as we only had 25 minutes around the port area which was the most interesting part of the city. The clientele are largely German with a few other nationalities and about 25 percent British and there was little mixing ,probably due to the language barriers and it was difficult to communicate and people gathered in the evenings in their own language groups.I hoped for more mixing It was very pleasant to sit to enjoy sunsets and the passing countryside as we leisurely sailed the river.All the main cities including Lyon and Avignon are easily explored from the boat and we have lovely memories of these beautiful places. the evenings were simple with light music playing as we enjoyed the company of fellow cruisers with inclusive drinks and food at hand at all time. We will certainly river cruise again and we hope with Arosa in the future.104 Read Less
Sail Date August 2017
This river cruise exceeded our expectation. We participated in all the "optional" excursions which added greatly to our enjoyment. It would not have been the same trip without them. All were interesting and for the most part ... Read More
This river cruise exceeded our expectation. We participated in all the "optional" excursions which added greatly to our enjoyment. It would not have been the same trip without them. All were interesting and for the most part unique except for the "cruise" on the Erdre River which we found to be beautiful but not any more beautiful than other rivers of its ilk. Furthermore, the outing scheduled at 9 p.m. after a bountiful meal, was at a time when we "seniors" would prefer to be winding down. It grew quite dark and it was not possible to see the chateaus and villa alongside the river as the night wore on. The Loire Princesse is lovely--new, quiet, and well-maintained. he lounge and dining room are spacious and furnished pleasingly. The food, of course, is wonderful, although the breakfast cook did not fry eggs to American tastes! It was fun that the villagers, old and young, along the river came down to the banks to see us sail by and wave, the Princesse being the ONLY boat on the lower Loire. We appreciated the efforts of the staff to include non-French-speakers in all announcements. Two separate buses were provided for excursions; one with a French-speaking guide, one with an English-speaking guide, and a dedicated guide for those who only spoke Spanish. It was a positive experience in every way, even including transportation from the airport before boarding and to the train station at the termination of the cruise. Read Less
Sail Date May 2017
Short break. Old ship but friendly and very clean Adapted cabin Well positioned Close to lift.. Twin beds . Bed next to window very cold. Impossible to sleep even with extra quilts and heating full on plus very noisy children ... Read More
Short break. Old ship but friendly and very clean Adapted cabin Well positioned Close to lift.. Twin beds . Bed next to window very cold. Impossible to sleep even with extra quilts and heating full on plus very noisy children running up and down corridor till early hours.. Cabin basic but shower suitable for disabled. Food good in Ballindoloch restaurant but strangely no vegetables included. Buffet Very good in Avon and Spey restaurants Entertainment .Lots of noisy screeching and manic dancing.. Not to our taste. We love the headliners on P &O Ballroom dancing between shows very pleasant but spoiled by young children racing around dance floor. Very dangerous. Nobody stopped them.. There was a disco on another deck and they could have had their own fun and games but nothing was organised . No separate pool for adults only and a visit to jaccuzi in beautiful sunshine spoiled by lots of children jumping in and out. They were completely out of control and again nobody stopped them. We were very disappointed and abandoned it. My wife is disabled and it was too risky. Honfleur very pleasant , beautiful weather. Would only go again on an adult only cruise . On other ships they have a kids club and their own programme and it is not a problem. We love kids but not running wild. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
We booked this cruise through great rail journeys. We had originally booked to go through champagne region, but a couple of weeks before they contacted us and said we couldn't go because of lock maintenance. We were offered a ... Read More
We booked this cruise through great rail journeys. We had originally booked to go through champagne region, but a couple of weeks before they contacted us and said we couldn't go because of lock maintenance. We were offered a refund, a later date or an alternative route. After much conferring, we chose the alternative route, which embarked at Joigny. When we received our itinerary we noticed that they were sending us on a dog leg route, quite pointlessly sending us on another train after the Eurostar, and then a long coach ride. After this was pointed out, it was changed, and we had a two hour trip on an extremely uncomfortable mini bus. Not the greatest start! We were a party of eight, and we discovered that the rest had cancelled. The barge has the capacity for 24, so we were more than delighted to have it to ourselves. When we arrived we were warmly welcomed by a crew of six, all of which were absolutely fantastic. They were Laurie, Sylvie, another Sylvie, Nicky, Mohammed, and Alain the captain. Nothing was too much trouble, the food was excellent, all the excursions were brilliant, with knowlegeable guides, and the barge was superb. We enjoyed cycling along the tow paths. We spent our last day seeing Paris, and moored under the Eiffel Tower. Champagne in the hot tub is recommended. So do book this fabulous trip, but do it direct with croisi Europe. Read Less
Sail Date September 2016
We chose this cruise to travel with friends who had been with Scenic previously. We travelled by Eurostar and TGV to Bordeaux, which was fine but only just made it to Paris Montparnasse as the cross-Paris timing was very tight. On ... Read More
We chose this cruise to travel with friends who had been with Scenic previously. We travelled by Eurostar and TGV to Bordeaux, which was fine but only just made it to Paris Montparnasse as the cross-Paris timing was very tight. On arrival at Bordeaux we were not met by any representative so made our own way to the ship. From there our luggage was taken on board, we were given champagne and escorted through the beautiful ship to our cabin, which although smallish by ocean cruise standards was beautifully fitted with a balcony and kept spotless by our cabin attendant Angela. The dining on the ship was excellent with fine wines and other drinks included. The choice of food was excellent and the two special dining evenings were superb. There was a wide choice of excursions (included) to wine chateaux to taste and dine. Passengers should be aware that they should be fairly fit for the walking involved. The entertainment on board was a resident musician, and guest artistes from the local area, and also a very good crew show. Finally, the crew and service on board was faultless, friendly and attentive with a smile. Disembarkation went smoothly and we were transferred to the station for our train journey back to the UK. Would we go again - yes but would need to pace ourselves for the walking involved. Read Less
Sail Date September 2016
This was the year of the great French roast, Paris at 35ºC and similar to that all the cruise long. The payback was clear blue skies, no rain and great photos.The ship was 100% full, hence the service levels in the public areas were ... Read More
This was the year of the great French roast, Paris at 35ºC and similar to that all the cruise long. The payback was clear blue skies, no rain and great photos.The ship was 100% full, hence the service levels in the public areas were stretched. This cruise is a mixture of great French wines and cheeses (approx 450 different cheeses to be tasted), as far as scenery goes the highlights are the cities. The visit to an old hospital and nearby wine tasting at Marche aux Vin was very interesting, as was our first tasting of French nougat which is based on egg white and honey, as was the truffle farm (with charming hosts & dog). The Sundowners excursion (a walk to a nearby fortress tower) for wine/beer/nibbles with live musicians in a cool afternoon breeze was very hard to take. The itinerary was exactly as published. Compliments have to be given to all the bus drivers - they were very professional, safe drivers who helped some of our fellow passengers with their walkers. Driving through the French countryside was most enjoyable. Read Less
Sail Date August 2016
This was our second cruise with Viking. The first one was Budapest to Amsterdam which we enjoyed so much we decided to book this one. It was a lovely cruise through the French wine region. Our only negative was the fact that too often ... Read More
This was our second cruise with Viking. The first one was Budapest to Amsterdam which we enjoyed so much we decided to book this one. It was a lovely cruise through the French wine region. Our only negative was the fact that too often we were not docked close to towns and often way out in the boonies requiring buses to get into town. I understand this is not Viking's choice but the French government who determines which cruise line docks where each week. All the tours were good. The buses they hire are excellent and walking tours well done. We saw lovely scenery along the way and the stops to enjoy the wineries were excellent. When at the end we didn't dock in Avignon but quite a distance away again in the boonies, Viking hired taxis and buses to take us to final destination. The food was great. The staff all excellent and helpful. Rooms are tiny but have everything you need and all amenities are first class. I would recommend this river cruise from Lyon to Avignon or vice versa. Read Less
Sail Date August 2016
Definitely a top-notch cruise ship and cruise line. The pros included friendliness of all staff, ports and scenery (the light presentation at Rouen cathedral at night is a must-see!). Aquavit Terrace for dining in the evening is ... Read More
Definitely a top-notch cruise ship and cruise line. The pros included friendliness of all staff, ports and scenery (the light presentation at Rouen cathedral at night is a must-see!). Aquavit Terrace for dining in the evening is apparently a well-kept secret. We actually dined there almost as many nights as in the formal dining room....a fabulous experience to enjoy gourmet food al fresco on the bow of the ship while cruising at dusk.....however less than a dozen fellow passengers partook in this option on the nights we dined outside. The cons included having a few tour guides that almost ruined our experience: one on Giverny excursion who liked to hear himself talk, dragged the group along and whose French-accented English was very difficult to understand (and I even speak French). We finally broke away from group and toured garden and house on our own. The second guide on the Normandy excursion was completely offensive as she opted to use the long bus ride to get on her soapbox and offer political opinions that were clearly inappropriate. It takes a lot to offend my husband and he was livid. As much as I would like to say that I would recommend a Viking Cruise to adults over 50 I really feel that if we ever have the opportunity to experience Viking again (and we hope to), it'll be at least ten years before we do so. We're both 56 and were often frustrated by older passengers for whom we had to wait, and slowed down our excursions. I love and enjoy senior travelers but we wanted to pack as much as we could in this once-in-a-lifetime trip, and felt we could have easily done more if we hadn't felt pulled back. Read Less
Sail Date August 2016
This was a last minute trip for my wife's 70th birthday. We loved the ship, food, service, and met many delightful people. Bordeaux is a lovely region of France, and we learned a lot about wine making and tasting. The atmosphere ... Read More
This was a last minute trip for my wife's 70th birthday. We loved the ship, food, service, and met many delightful people. Bordeaux is a lovely region of France, and we learned a lot about wine making and tasting. The atmosphere throughout the whole trip was relaxed, We enjoyed meeting new friends which is easy because the cruise only has a maximum of 200 passengers. They met us at the airport and took care of all the details in transition to the ship. The same excellent service was there for our departure. Get off the fence and go!! Viking cruises are totally great. Can't wait for the next one!! Read Less
Sail Date August 2016
The name of this cruise is "Spectacular South of France". This cruise spends most evenings in ports large and small. The first night is is in Paris, which is not on the river cruised; Saone and Rhone rivers. We gathered for a ... Read More
The name of this cruise is "Spectacular South of France". This cruise spends most evenings in ports large and small. The first night is is in Paris, which is not on the river cruised; Saone and Rhone rivers. We gathered for a nights stay at the Scenic's host hotel in Paris. Nice 4 star hotel. The next morning our bags were collected from the hallway at the designated time and we were bussed to the train station for our day trip to Dijon. We were given a short tour. Then we boarded a bus and were transported to the ship that was docked in Chalon-sur-Saone. This is almost an all-inclusive cruise, All drinks, meals, tips, great internet service and shore excursions are included.We also had several special events off the ship that were also included. We visited Tournus, Cluney, Macon, Lyon, Tournon,Viviers, Ardeche National Park, Chateauneuf-du-pape, Avignon, Arles and Tarascon via bus or port. This cruise line obviously caters to Australians and Brits, most of whom were third,fourth or five time regulars with Scenic. We had a blast being one of two American couples. The Australians, in particular, were fascinated by our politics and gun rights. We found the "aussies" to be much more sociable than our American associates back home. We were invited to dine with several separate couples and made some great friends. I can not say enough about the quality of the river cruise experience. On this cruise, you sit where you want, lounge where you want in a wonderfully appointed river "Spaceship". Go on shore excursions where and when you want. The food was top notch, service was impeccable; these guys do not skimp. Our butler "concierge level room" made my wife feel like a queen which made my trip wonderful. Two things I particularly liked about this cruise was the ability tour on your own by foot or electric assisted bike with a "GPS like device" that would self guide you through the port towns. You can also use this device to give you facts about places you see from your balcony while cruising and it is also used for tour guided trips to help you hear better.. We will return to travel with Scenic. The rooms, and bathrooms were balconies were kept clean and the refrigerator was stocked twice a day. Read Less
Sail Date July 2016
Absolutely outstanding in every respect. This was our first experience on a hotel barge, and we could not have been more pleased. Deluxe 2 cabin hotel barge run by Belmond. Cabins are spacious with luxury amenities, great beds, large ... Read More
Absolutely outstanding in every respect. This was our first experience on a hotel barge, and we could not have been more pleased. Deluxe 2 cabin hotel barge run by Belmond. Cabins are spacious with luxury amenities, great beds, large closets, and generous washrooms. The barge is always rented as a charter, meaning that you have both cabins and a great ability to tailor the meals and tours to your timing and tastes. Meals prepared to your liking and timing by superlative chef. Each meal expertly paired with local wines and cheeses (forget your diet for this week) Exceptional guide with van takes you to local attractions, tailored to your interest. On board bikes and trails along the canal provide opportunity to get some exercise along the scenic canal. Talented Captain and charming hostess round out the fantastic staff. Canal du Midi is scenic and charming, you cruise through pastoral wineries through the 17th century canal and it's historic locks. Absolutely everything is included and top quality Read Less
Sail Date July 2016
A fabulous 4night cruise on the iconic Marco Polo. I loved this ships art deco interior and it reminded me of an episode of my favourite Hercule Poorly series! Unable to disembark at the Isles of Scilly due to bad weather, the ... Read More
A fabulous 4night cruise on the iconic Marco Polo. I loved this ships art deco interior and it reminded me of an episode of my favourite Hercule Poorly series! Unable to disembark at the Isles of Scilly due to bad weather, the entertainment manager put on a range of great activities including a traditional Captain's Reception! The visits to Honfleur , Rouen and afternoon cruise back down the Seine were memorable! We thoroughly enjoyed visiting historical places and the markets! The accommodation on board was a cabin on level 4,bijou but we loved the portholes, we were able to watch the Seine early morning. The dining room was a little cramped,but the tables were great,there was a great menu and the food was delicious, enjoyed with great dining companions!! The staff were second to none and my friend and I thoroughly enjoyed this short cruise.We felt this was traditional cruising at it's best ....the Marco Polo is now 50 years old! For us..it ..what is not to love !! It was reassuring that many passengers were older with some having a disability, the teams appeared to support them well. Read Less
Sail Date March 2016
My wife and I thoroughly enjoyed our trip along the Seine up to Normandy--at least until the Norovirus started hitting the passengers. I estimate that 10-25% of the passengers got sick at some point and their was NOTHING on board to ... Read More
My wife and I thoroughly enjoyed our trip along the Seine up to Normandy--at least until the Norovirus started hitting the passengers. I estimate that 10-25% of the passengers got sick at some point and their was NOTHING on board to alleviate any symptoms. It was like we're all on our own. Infection rate could have been higher or lower because virtually nothing was said by the staff publicly and I would expect them to understate the problem. Do all river cruises experience Norovirus outbreaks? Other than that, I loved the cruise, particularly the casualness, friendliness of staff and passengers alike, and the food. I have no complaints about the cruise itself. The staff admitted that the Neptune was built in 2001 and this was the next to last cruise before it was sold to another company. I found it to be a worn but very comfortable ship Read Less
Sail Date October 2015
Boarded Viking Buri 9/27/15 from Chalon France for Portraits of Southern France 8 day cruise. Checked in, welcomed, and then unpacked in our stateroom. Later we reviewed the cruise materials. Read a notice: Opening paragraph, "As ... Read More
Boarded Viking Buri 9/27/15 from Chalon France for Portraits of Southern France 8 day cruise. Checked in, welcomed, and then unpacked in our stateroom. Later we reviewed the cruise materials. Read a notice: Opening paragraph, "As you have already been informed by our Program Director, a few passengers on board are currently suffering from gastrointestinal illness." We'd been on board maybe an hour. First time we were informed. Didn't know who the P. Director was. (Anyone boarding at Chalon didn't either.) The notice stated it is highly contagious especially among 65+ populations. Can lead to complications due to severe dehydration. They listed the protocols the staff was taking to contain the outbreak and recommended we continuously wash our hands and not to touch our face. 3 days later we called the desk to inform them I was ill. We knew we would be quarantined in our room. Quickly realized there is not one staff member assigned to monitor the condition of infected guests nor to gather pertinent medical history. No checking whatsoever. 10 hours of unrelenting diarrhea and vomiting, I asked to obtain a prescription to control the vomiting due to preexisting chronic kidney condition. Concierge was sent into Lyon. Couldn't obtain the medication as it required a prescription. I asked for a doctor. 4 hours later one arrived. He wrote 2 prescriptions in which my roommate was temporarily released into Lyon to get them filled (she doesn't speak French). This was an hour before dusk. I recovered. Later earned that 7 infected passengers had boarded from a previous Viking cruise days before. At the end of our cruise (10/3) 22 people had contracted the illness. I asked the Hotel Director 1. Why weren't arriving guests informed before going to their staterooms, thus it would be their decision to take the gamble? 2. What would have been Viking's response if someone had said they did not want to board given the active breakout? 3. Was I correct in assuming no Viking staff was assigned to monitor ill guests (not treat, just to check every 4 hours, keep a list of concerns, etc.)? He confirmed that was correct. (Second unfortunate circumstance was the ship broke down in Lyon - 2 day fix, lots of buses to towns, foreshortened tours and a stretch of night cruising to catch-up.) I wrote Viking (Woodland Hills, California). Their email expressed sympathy and they would forward my concerns to the Western European office. They emphasized the illness can occur where there are large numbers of people in a self-contained space. Wouldn't directly answer my question about informing guests of an active out breakout before boarding, or assigning a person to oversee ill guests. My AAA office also contacted Viking which resulted in Viking offering my travel mate and I a voucher (approx. $1000 each) toward another cruise. We declined as it meant gambling again and another $5-6000 from us to pay the balance. Had they wanted this to be a goodwill offer, it should simply be in cash. I've traveled on land tours (Road Scholar and OATS). Both times impressed with their tour directors as they clearly knew how to engage medical assistance when needed. Not locked in a room with no one checking. One large cruise (Holland America) that given it's size, does provide medical support Read Less
Sail Date September 2015
I knew that Arosa is German owned and operated when I booked the cruise. I did not realize the extent to which that would matter until too late. But's let begin with the positive. The room was stylish, very clean and more ... Read More
I knew that Arosa is German owned and operated when I booked the cruise. I did not realize the extent to which that would matter until too late. But's let begin with the positive. The room was stylish, very clean and more spacious than I had expected. The bed was comfortable. The French doors could be opened completely, allowing us to bring the countryside into our cabin. We had no complaints abut the bathroom or shower. We were very happy with our cabin. The food tasted excellent, the variety (excluding desserts) was sufficient and presentation was as good as good can be for a buffet. But that was the problem; every meal, breakfast, lunch and dinner for seven days was a buffet, unless you paid extra for an a la carte dinner. And the food was German, making for the surreal experience of eating sauerkraut and schnitzel while cruising the French countryside. Even though the vast majority of people on our ship were English speaking, German was the first language. The poor grammar and vocabulary in the materials translated into English should have been embarrassing, though we found them funny. What we did find annoying was the announcements being in German first, particularly when sitting on deck, watching the sites. We would see a castle; an announcement in German would describe it. Then the English announcement would be heard, by which time the castle was no longer visible in the distance. The day trips by bus were excellent; all of our guides were good and one was amazing. One of our big disappointments, though, was that the guided bike tours that were to have been included (and were one of our main reasons for choosing Arosa) were not offered on our trip. And the evening entertainment was non-existent or awful. Finally, connecting to the internet was impossible all week, not just for us but for everybody. When I holiday, I do not expect to check emails all the time, but we would have liked to have been able to share our experience with family and friends, particularly given that I paid extra for European cellular service. Our cruise was not terrible; neither was it great. In future, we will choose ships that are English owned and operated. Read Less
Sail Date September 2015
We were travelling for a surprise birthday party for our relative which was held on board the cruiser. The ship was exceptional, furnishings and decoration throughout the ship was first class with every detail thought out, not only design ... Read More
We were travelling for a surprise birthday party for our relative which was held on board the cruiser. The ship was exceptional, furnishings and decoration throughout the ship was first class with every detail thought out, not only design but comfort also. Everything was well signposted and ships information and activities were communicated to us the day before in order for us to plan ahead. Our cabin service was outstanding and our cabin steward attended to anything extra which we required (one of our party has mobility problems) big thank you to Nigel Davenport. There was a lot on offer for excursions for those who wanted them. Port experiences were good with staff on hand to direct us to buses and taxis as we wanted to make visits to other places previously seen. Dining was a good experience and we tried several restaurants although I preferred the Windjammer which offered a very wide selection of International food and specialist foods (gluten and sugar free). Lots of entertainment on offer to suit most tastes and I enjoyed everything I saw. Embarkation and disembarkation were well organised and there were no hold ups. Checking in for embarkation the staff came to our group to accommodate our wheelchair member. All staff were courteous, helpful and made us feel special. The only suggestion I would make is perhaps to offer coffee sachets in addition to tea in the cabins. A thoroughly enjoyable experience for us - congratulations to all staff and Royal Caribbean for a memorable experience. Read Less
Sail Date August 2015
11.15am - Joined a queue to get on which was over 100 yards long. "Computer glitch sir". 11.55am - got on board. Tried to log on to my pre-paid unlimited internet package with my iPhone. Error! "Computer glitch sir, try ... Read More
11.15am - Joined a queue to get on which was over 100 yards long. "Computer glitch sir". 11.55am - got on board. Tried to log on to my pre-paid unlimited internet package with my iPhone. Error! "Computer glitch sir, try later. 12.45pm queued for 25 mins at Customer Service to get internet sorted. "Seems to be on iPhones sir, try turning your phone off and back on". Did so - Error! "Try again later sir". 13.45 - went to cabin. Bathroom dirty, towels in plastic bag on bed. Had bite to eat - very nice food and very good service. 16.30 - queued for 26 mins at Customer Service to Dort out Internet. "Have you tried turning the phone off and on sir?" About 6 passengers (holding iPhones and iPads) through their hands in the air, laugh and walk away. Tried on board ' Anthem app' all it ever did for 3 days was crash. Deleted and downloaded it 5 times. All it ever did was crash. Can't be bothered to write about the ship or service other than to say there were not enough staff on board and everything took an age. Diamond Club had very little (actually none) security checks in place. If one of you could open the door with your sea card then you could all get in. The first night was spent watching a family of brothers, sisters, dad, mum and one child spend over 1 hour on the computer with the Diamond Club host and believe it or not - they all got served with drinks. Were they Diamond Club members? Well the mother was because she kept giving her cruise card to each of them when they went out and came back in. Last night was the worst. Put two very large cases out at 7.05pm. They were still there, all on their own at 10.30. We queued for 20 mins to complain (you're getting the gist now aren't you) "oh dear, I'll send someone up to take them". 11.30pm - cases still outside our room. I queued at...20mins..."it will be dealt with"...1.15am...queued...got very angry. "We'll sort it sir". I should point out that all this time, now over 3 hours, my wife was telephoning Customer Services and getting: "we are experiencing...please wait while we... Please wait"...dial tone. She tried over 20 times. I went back 3 more time until gone 2am and was very tired and very angry. We carried all our own cases off in the morning and I drove home in a poor state, which I'm not proud of because I shouldn't have driven in such a state. Will we go RC again? Well we have a 14 days cruise with 2 cabins (our son wants to cruise) held for us but we are going to cancel it once I've finished this review. Back to P&O and Celebrity. Read Less
Sail Date August 2015
It appears only negative comments are showing up for this cruise. But....... We just got home from the Portraits of Southern France cruise with a three day extension in Paris and had a wonderful time! Everything about the trip from ... Read More
It appears only negative comments are showing up for this cruise. But....... We just got home from the Portraits of Southern France cruise with a three day extension in Paris and had a wonderful time! Everything about the trip from being met in Marseilles, to the ship itself, to the daily and optional tours, to the meals were first rate all the way. No attention to detail was missed as far as we were concerned. It was also done during a heat wave and the ship and crew made sure that we had plenty of water and that the tours did not go at a too fast pace. The evening meals were some of the best we have had on river cruises. The officers and staff were always engaging. The Captain even invited me to the wheel house to see how the ship was maneuvered in a lock. The Viking Hermond is a first class ship with a first class crew. Do not let negative reviews stop you from experiencing this beautiful river cruise. Read Less
Sail Date July 2015
The Hermod is only a year old and is in beautiful condition and very well maintained by the staff. It is simply gorgeous. The public areas are very well appointed. The dining room suffers from a low, hard ceiling and is very noisy. It ... Read More
The Hermod is only a year old and is in beautiful condition and very well maintained by the staff. It is simply gorgeous. The public areas are very well appointed. The dining room suffers from a low, hard ceiling and is very noisy. It really needs sound baffles. You have to shout to carry on conversations. The service was very slow--only 10 servers for 184 passengers. Ten minutes to get a glass of iced water. The "gourmet" food was well prepared but I prefer the simpler fare of the Viking Pride. The servers waited on all the tables so you never got acquainted with just one for your table with him/her knowing your preferences. The entertainment was mostly the pianist in the bar. He was very good, could play just about anything. The servers were attentive. The drinks expensive: $3.25 for a Coke in the bar. This was offset by free nuts, pretzels, etc. Meals had unlimited free French wine, one red, one white. Too acidic for me, I prefer a Pinot Gregio type which they served only once. The shore excursions varied by difficulty and were all interesting, several offered at each stop, but with the heat wave (95 F) exhausting for me. The best night was the last: we were entertained by an accordionist on the Sundeck, in twilight, next to the Avignon bridge. Spectacular. This was my 3rd Viking river cruise. They were all very good, but the Hermod suffers from a staff that isn't very intimate with the passengers. I was told the staff rotates frequently and their emotional remoteness shows. Read Less
Sail Date July 2015

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