26 Viking River Viking Rinda Romantic Cruise Reviews

We wanted to experience Paris and all of the history in the area. We thought a river cruise was the best way to accomplish this. We were not disappointed! Museums, castles, palaces were fabulous. Normandy was emotional. Wish you held the ... Read More
We wanted to experience Paris and all of the history in the area. We thought a river cruise was the best way to accomplish this. We were not disappointed! Museums, castles, palaces were fabulous. Normandy was emotional. Wish you held the Paris at night tour earlier in the week because people are preparing to leave early the next morning. Each stop had a great tour and lots of information about the area. The menu varied daily with the specials, and it was very good. I think the kitchen staff did a great job. The staff was very friendly and I was impressed that after the first day, they always said my name. Accommodations were very comfortable and it was easy to sleep at night. Hardly knew we were moving. Staff did a great job cleaning the room. Loved the balcony and the view. Overall, great experience and I’ll travel with you again! Read Less
Sail Date October 2018
We chose a double Viking cruise for our 25th wedding anniversary & they met all expectations! Michael, our cruise director was outstanding & was off board for all the walking & specialty tours, making as many as any one person ... Read More
We chose a double Viking cruise for our 25th wedding anniversary & they met all expectations! Michael, our cruise director was outstanding & was off board for all the walking & specialty tours, making as many as any one person could possibly accomplish. His nightly next day shore excursion talks were delightful & coupled with Veronica, the sommelier's talk & backed up by the chef, it was a real entertaining laugh. I looked forward to it every night. Veronica gave us extra table talk on wines each night on the Silver Spirits package. Rooms are simple and clean with lots of storage space. Our cabin steward was meticulous to cleanly detail each day. We had a veranda which allowed for shore views when not on deck. The excursions all had excellent guides, as would be expected in this pricey range. The connection to Paris by high speed rail was excellent, as Viking staff took personal care of our luggage leaving the ship, tagging & then escorting us to the train station & even punching our ticket & boarding the train. A second Viking rep was waiting for us at the end of our journey. Dinners had a great selection & themed for the locale. Breakfasts & lunches were a bit repetitious as we were on a double cruise. Our waiters were friendly & witty ! Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
My wife had never been to France even though we’ve travelled on six continents. So we planned this week on the Rhône to be followed by a week on the Seine, and then a week in an apartment in Paris. We arrived in Avignon a day early ... Read More
My wife had never been to France even though we’ve travelled on six continents. So we planned this week on the Rhône to be followed by a week on the Seine, and then a week in an apartment in Paris. We arrived in Avignon a day early and stayed near the dock. In the morning I walked to 5he ship and was pleasantly surprised that our room was ready. The Viking employee that helped us with our luggage was one of our waiters from the Grang European Viking cruise we had taken two years before. Surprisingly, he remembered us! As usual, the tours were well organized and interesting. We didn’t do any of the optional tours but since our ship was well located, we were able to entertain ourselves in the towns we visited. The ship was well maintained. No nicks or scuffs or other signs of wear. The food was outstanding. I also thought the evening entertainment was good, but the tv coverage wasn’t up to the standard of our previous trips with Viking. If you’re interested in France, I’d recommend this trip with Viking. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
My husband and I recently made our second Viking cruise. Both trips were wonderful. The excursions and ship entertainment were both enjoyable, but the most outstanding thing about both trips was the service. So many situations come to mind ... Read More
My husband and I recently made our second Viking cruise. Both trips were wonderful. The excursions and ship entertainment were both enjoyable, but the most outstanding thing about both trips was the service. So many situations come to mind when I say service but one was most memorable. At about 9:00 PM on a Wednesday evening I realized that I had not packed enough insulin for my husband. Immediately, I went to the front desk to ask about medical possibilities for getting a new prescription on France. The attendant called a doctor who came to us. He examined my husband, wrote us a script, and said that we needed to have it immediately. Now the most amazing part: a young ship employee actually ran from where we were docked to a pharmacy to get our medicine! he had it back to us in almost half an hour. Now that is service! Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
The Rinda trip from Paris to Normandy was spectacular. I loved the port stops in Vernon/Giverny, Rouen and Les Andelys. The ship was gorgeous, the food was amazing and the crew were a delight. A couple of suggestions: 1. The ... Read More
The Rinda trip from Paris to Normandy was spectacular. I loved the port stops in Vernon/Giverny, Rouen and Les Andelys. The ship was gorgeous, the food was amazing and the crew were a delight. A couple of suggestions: 1. The “Silver Spirits” bar package was well worth the $300 per cabin. Not that we were barflies, but it entitles you to almost any wine off their wine list. The house wines included with lunch and dinner were fine, but they had some really great ones on the list. 2. Be aware that the ship docks in Le Pecq, a suburb, and not Paris proper. If you want to go into the city on embarkation day, you can get there for less than 5 euros on the RER train. The St Germain en Leye station on the A1 line is close and stops in the heart of the city is close but it is a steep climb The included tour to Giverny is a bit rushed, while you have more time than you need. You might want to consider getting a cab to stay longer. The crowd does tend to skew older, although we did have some intergenerational groups. I am happy to answer any questions. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
We were delighted with our Viking River Cruise - Paris and the Heart of Normandy. This allowed us to see the City of Lights, Monet’s Garden in Giverny, Rouen, the D-Day Beaches and other Normandy sites. Everything in our experience was ... Read More
We were delighted with our Viking River Cruise - Paris and the Heart of Normandy. This allowed us to see the City of Lights, Monet’s Garden in Giverny, Rouen, the D-Day Beaches and other Normandy sites. Everything in our experience was superior! Our accommodations onboard were first class, comfortable and relaxing. Our tours were led by excellent, informative, and entertaining guides, who cleared the way, so we did not have to stand in line. The food was divine and was different every night. I have a gluten allergy, and I could find numerous options at every meal. I told Viking prior to my trip, and they arranged gluten-free meals on our shore excursions. We also do not drink alcohol and also told Viking prior to our trip. As a result, waiters always had sparkling water and diet Cokes ready for us at our meals. This was very thoughtful because wine come with the meals and we appreciated not having to ask repeatedly for non-alcoholic drinks. Such is the top quality service. Every staff member was there to help, was polite and went the extra mile. At Dinner, the Maitre’d stopped by each night to make sure our meal was just right. About the food: excellent! Every night features several regional specialties, but also served each night is a steak, chicken and seafood dish if the regional specialty is not your thing. There is a full buffet at breakfast and lunch. The cruise makes sure you have meal service if you have an early tour. Breakfast is served extra early on the day of departure. Make friends early in the trip, so you will have dinner companions. Dinner tables seat six to eight. There are no tables for two. About the tours:comprehensive and challenging. We paid for the optional shore excursions several times and it was worth the extra cost. We spent almost a full day in Paris seeing the sites, concluding with a tour of Notre Dame. This day also included lunch at a charming French Bistro. Our group was small, so our tour was almost a private one. On another tour of Paris, we stormed the Lovre in an intensive three hour minute tour. We saw all the famous works of art, including the Mona Lisa and Venus de Milo. Our guide was charming and very knowledgeable. But it was a bit of a challenge with much fast walking and many stairs. Included with the cruise was a tour of artist Claude Monet’s Garden in Giverny. Excellent planning meant we skipped the line and arrived before the crowd. We wished we had more time in the garden: our only regret was that we didn’t slow down amid the beauty. We loved the trip to Rouen Cathedral, which Monet painted numerous times, and the city of Rouen, where we enjoyed a leisurely cafe at a small restaurant. We travelled nearly two hours by luxury motorcoach to the D-Day beaches. We spent a good deal of time at the American Cemetery at Omaha Beach. We got to participate in a short, but moving memorial service held just for our tour group. My husband is a WWII buff, and he thought we could have spent more time at the beaches. Viking offered numerous tours each day, providing many choices. You would have a great time just with the provided tours, skipping the extra cost tours. All of our tours fascinated us and we were excited to learn new things. I will say that all the tours require a good bit of walking. All tours are marked as easy, moderate or demanding. My husband climbed a high hill to visit Richard the Lionheart’s castle. This was a demanding tour. The all-day Paris tour was easy to moderate. All my tours were easy, but I was walking ALOT! Onboard, we enjoyed a painting class and an art history session. We really enjoyed the coffee stations offering cappuccinos , fresh cookies or madeleines and and “bubbly” water 24/7. The WiFi worked well. All in all, we decided this was the best trip in our lives. It was perfect for us, and we highly recommend it. Read Less
Sail Date June 2018
Invited by friends to join them on a Viking River cruise from Paris to Normandy, we happily signed on. Not only was this our first trip to Europe, it was our first river cruise. From the moment we set foot on the Rinda, we knew this was ... Read More
Invited by friends to join them on a Viking River cruise from Paris to Normandy, we happily signed on. Not only was this our first trip to Europe, it was our first river cruise. From the moment we set foot on the Rinda, we knew this was going to be a fabulous experience. We were right. The stateroom was exceptionally well appointed with the most important factor, a comfortable bed, meeting the highest standards. Every member of the staff from Captain to stewards were professional, attentive, and personable. The food rivaled that of the city, and the complementary house wines very good. The low-key entertainment, particularly the opera duo, exceeded expectation. Having previously taken only ocean cruises, I was particularly charmed by the intimacy of the ship and the personal attention of the staff. Every excursion was exceptional. The "big" venues, Versailles, Giverny, etc., were as magnificent as expected, but to my surprise, equally enjoyable were the less well-known places we visited, e.g., Malmason, Les Andelys. Of particular note is that every one of the tour guides resides in the area they showed, and their love of their hometown was evident and engaging. Given the opportunity, would I another Viking River Cruise? I resounding, "Yes!" Read Less
Sail Date May 2018
This trip was amazing from the start. We were met by Viking representatives that had a desk at the airport. We were driven from the airport to the Paris Marriott Opera Ambassador Hotel. We had no idea that it would be so far from the ... Read More
This trip was amazing from the start. We were met by Viking representatives that had a desk at the airport. We were driven from the airport to the Paris Marriott Opera Ambassador Hotel. We had no idea that it would be so far from the airport. We had initially considered finding a cheaper hotel and seeing Paris on our own. We so glad that we decided to book the 3-day pre-cruise in Paris. It gave us the opportunity to rest after the long flight from the west coast. We also had the opportunity to visit top visitor attractions in Paris that other cruisers saw only on a bus tour. The hotel was close to the Opera House and many visitor attractions. But the best part of the trip is that we got to meet other Viking cruisers at the hotel and quickly became friends. We visited Notre Dame, the Louve, Musee D'Orsay, the Eifel Tower, and had the opportunity to use the Paris Metro transportation system with our new friends. Viking had a desk in the Paris Marriott Opera Ambassador Hotel and the pre-tour excursions and neighbor walk was well done. The hotel's buffet breakfast was great. We found Paris' attractions to be very crowded, although we were traveled during an off season. We especially enjoyed Viking's itinerary and being able to see places off of the beaten track: Giverney and Monet's Garden, Roeun and it's spired cathedrals, Normandy, and La Roche-Guyon with its amazing castle built next to a cliff and 300 spiraling steps that lead UP to the dungeons at the top. I could have stayed at Monet's Garden all day! The history of D-Day and Normandy lead us to do a lot of reading about WWII when we returned and gave us a greater appreciation of the ingenuity to build artificial harbors in England for the 5 Normandy beaches and the courage of our US and allied soldiers. We had previously gone on a Holland America cruise, but preferred the more intimate Viking river cruise experience with a maximum of 190 cruisers. The food and the service were superb. The chefs were very accommodating when there were special diet requirements. Throughout the trip, we liked the portable audio device that allowed us to hear the local guides clearly. We also liked that we were broken into smaller groups and that there were several guides. It was nice that daily excursions were included in the cruise price. Some of the excursions required us to get up early the next day so we didn't take advantage of the entertainment. We went only to one. The staff calls you by name. You are not a room number. Amazing! On the final day, a Viking agent accompanied us to the airport. We got to the airport 3 hours, 20 minutes before the departure time. It was like Disneyland with lines that snaked. We crept along one long line and that was followed by at least 3 additional long lines. We were so glad that a Viking agent was there to communicate with the French-speaking agent at the airport. We barely made it on to our flight. What made our trip especially memorable was meeting new friends. We hope that we can travel together on future Viking cruises. Everything was perfect and it this was one of our most memorable trips. Thank you Viking staff! Read Less
Sail Date April 2018
We decided to take a Viking River Cruise just because it looked like a good thing to try for our first trip abroad. And we were not disappointed! Starting with our flight. We chose the round trip air option from Viking on Air France, ... Read More
We decided to take a Viking River Cruise just because it looked like a good thing to try for our first trip abroad. And we were not disappointed! Starting with our flight. We chose the round trip air option from Viking on Air France, great airline. We were met on our arrival in Paris by Viking representatives and taken by motor coach to our ship The Viking Rinda, the ship was just beautiful. We were greeted graciously and checked in, then explored the ship a little and by the time we got to our very nicely appointed Veranda (B) cabin on the main deck our luggage was already there. Dining aboard the ship was an delightful experience. We looked forward to every meal on board ship. The entertainment and activities provided on board made us feel included with all that was going on. Our ports were very convenient and shore excursions were both beautiful and educational. Now about the crew... From the Captain to the deck hands, What a ride, smooth and comfortable. From The Head Chef to the waiters, food and drink we could not have enjoyed more. From the Program Director to the tour guides, knowledgeable and well coordinated. And from the Hotel Manager to the cabin attendants, very accommodating and attentive. We would like to say that the entire crew were courteous, hard working and eager to meet all our needs. None of our request went unanswered or unfulfilled. Would we go again? Absolutely, We are already looking for our next destination! Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
We were a party of eight traveling with our family and friends. Our special pleasure was traveling with our eighteen and fourteen-year-old granddaughters that made our trip so wonderful. We particularly enjoyed the beauty of Paris and ... Read More
We were a party of eight traveling with our family and friends. Our special pleasure was traveling with our eighteen and fourteen-year-old granddaughters that made our trip so wonderful. We particularly enjoyed the beauty of Paris and how wonderfully we were treated by the French people. The excursions to the towns and beaches of Normandy were so moving, we really appreciated what our soldiers as well as the allies did to stop Hitler's tyranny in Europe. Our visit to Giverny and Monet's Garden was much more than we ever expected, living pictures of what we have seen on his canvas. The ship was beautiful, the crew could not be more accommodating, especially the husband and wife team who were the Executive Chef and Maîtres d'. We also would like to give praise to the Hotel Manager, the Cruise Manager, our tour guides and the food servers for their dedicated work. The food of course was fabulous! We loved our Viking experience! Read Less
Sail Date June 2017
We decided to see France in style and comfort, and we certainly did! - We arrived at Charles de Gaule at 9 AM on Easter Sunday, and were met by a Viking driver in a black Mercedes--just for us. Then, off to the pre-cruise hotel, the ... Read More
We decided to see France in style and comfort, and we certainly did! - We arrived at Charles de Gaule at 9 AM on Easter Sunday, and were met by a Viking driver in a black Mercedes--just for us. Then, off to the pre-cruise hotel, the 5-star (in my view) Hotel Rochester Champs Elysees, Paris. This hotel, on Rue La Boetie, is perfectly situated: 1/2 block to a bakery, 1/2 block to an ATM, 1/2 block from the Saint Phillipe du Roule metro stop (get the 10 metro/bus ride carnet pack), and 1/2 block to St. Phillipe Church for Easter morning services! The Rochester staff is helpful and very accommodating, the rooms perfect, and the morning breakfast was great. Note to Viking HQ: keep this hotel in your stable of Paris hotels--and at the top of the list!! - The provided Viking Walking tour the next day of the Bastille-St Paul-Hotel de Ville areas and the Jewish Quarter were outstanding. Our Swedish-American-Parisian tour guide was as informative as he was hilarious. That night we opted for 4-hour evening dinner on the Seine with Bateaux Mouches. The sun set as we began the cruise, and the lighted Eiffel Tower at 10 PM is spectacular. The next day we took at full day bicycle tour of Versailles town and market, the Palace gardens and Palace itself with Fat Tire Tours. I cannot imagine a better tour of Versailles. - Yes, we boarded the Viking Rinda in the suburbs at Le Pecq, 45 minutes of town. A very nice suburb, beautiful museum and gardens, and a direct RER line to downtown Paris. The staff of the Rinda were great, and our next 6 days were wonderful. Highlights: Giverny and the Gardens; Rouen and the optional Countryside tour to a Sheep Farm/Apple Orchards; Normandy and Omaha Beach visit; and Napoleon and Josephine's Chateau at Malmaison. Our tour guide in Normandy was the granddaughter of a "D-Day" family, whose farm traded sides that day, twice. She made the tour very special, and very personal. This individual touch is something Viking is noted for, and should be recognized for their forethought. Our private tour of Malmaison and its gardens closed out a great experience in Paris and the Heart of Normandy Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
We had been receiving viking literature regarding their cruises for a couple of years,... Then decided this would be perfect for our honeymoon,...and it was,... Everything was wonderful including the crew and staff on our ... Read More
We had been receiving viking literature regarding their cruises for a couple of years,... Then decided this would be perfect for our honeymoon,...and it was,... Everything was wonderful including the crew and staff on our boat,...perfect ! I didn't realize france was so beautiful,...especially along the river,... The excursions were well organized and the staff handled all these people with great care and concern,...the bus was comfortable so the several excursions were a joy to participate as well as interesting,...while on the excursion to normandy,...the staff brought us to a lovely restaurant for lunch,...the food was wonderful and the service was very efficient,... So we could be on our way after we ate,... We also Extended our Trip by coming to Paris 4 days early before the Cruise started,...Viking put us up at The Hotel Rochester which was only 2 blocks from the Champs elysee,...we got to sample some absolutely great french restaurants,... All in all,...everything was perfect because viking handled every aspect of our trip,...and i couldn't say enough about the incredible staff at the hotel and on the boat,... when all situations of your trip are handled so professionally,..it makes it such a joy In dealing with viking,...kudos to viking and all their amazing staff,... Thank You, Thank you,...thank you ! Read Less
Sail Date April 2017
This was the second part of the France's Finest 14 day cruise we booked. The first leg was from Avignon to Lyon. We were taken to the train station in Lyon for the high speed train trip, first class, to Paris. This took about 2 ... Read More
This was the second part of the France's Finest 14 day cruise we booked. The first leg was from Avignon to Lyon. We were taken to the train station in Lyon for the high speed train trip, first class, to Paris. This took about 2 hours. We were met by a Viking representative and taken by small luxury van to the port in Le Pecq outside of Paris. Our embarkation was smooth and within minutes we were in our room. Lunch was also being served for the new passengers and it was nice to be well rested and able to take advantage of the ship at this time. This leg we also chose the lowest category as we did not wish to have a balcony due to the time of year (October) and being told that sometimes the ships are stacked and you are facing another ship. Considering how little time we spent in our room, we are glad we did not spend the extra money. We were in room 123, which was the opposite side from our room on the Delling the previous week. We preferred the even side as in most ports we were facing the river, not the port. The room is well planned and lit. There is room under the bed for luggage, a water bottled filled daily on your desk, small listening devices for the tours (make sure they are always charged and take them with you for every tour), as well as a real hair dryer, not like some that we have had on ocean cruises. The bathroom is small but plenty of room for toiletries and great water pressure in the shower. The room is impeccably clean and remained that way throughout the cruise. Let me say now that the staff on the Rinda was wonderful. From the captain to the kitchen staff, to the great Program Director, Susann, they could not have been more friendly or helpful. The; ship is beautiful and clean. The food is outstanding with so many choices. The wait staff if also amazing. We tried to keep the same server thoughout and we had the most wonderful waiter, Paul. He took care of our table of 5 women and one man with humor and perfect service. I highly recommend taking advantage of the included walking tours. They are filled with good information and will provide you a glimpse of the town where you may choose tor return on your own. Paris: We opted for the Paris City Tour with Louvre Optional Excursion, but you could simply do the city tour for free and stay in the city until the shuttle returned. By bus we drove through the city seeing the Champs-elysees, a photo stop at the Eiffel Tower and a stop at Notre Dame Cathedral. Here we had a tour and time to explore on our own. Due to the timing of this excursion, rather than returning to the ship for lunch, we had lunch at a local cafe which was included. It was cool but nice enough to sit outside. Nothing like sitting in an outdoor cafe in Paris! From here we continue on to the Louvre. We had a tour guide who showed us the highlights. We actually got to see the Mona Lisa up front as the crowds were so small in October. We had some time to visit an amazing chocolate shop within the Louvre, La Maison du Chocolat. Wow! Some of the best chocolate ever. Great tour. Vernon: We oped for the Monet Foundation tour in Giverny that included the house and gardens. We were concerned that in October there might not be much to see in the garden but we were wrong. Beautiful colors everywhere! We had plenty of time to shop both in the Monet shop and in the town and visit the church where Monet is buried. This was a fabulous, included excursion. In the afternoon we took the walking tour of Vernon. This turned out to be one of our favorite towns. Our guide was wonderful and the shopping was really good! Very scenic. Rouen: Took the walking tour of Rouen in the afternoon and it is a beautiful town where you can get right off the ship and explore on your own. Beautiful architecture and history and great shopping, too! The cathedral is beautiful and the church dedicated to St. Joan of Arc is modern but also beautiful. There was a festival going on and it was extremely busy and crowded but that didn't take away from our enjoying of Rouen. Rouen, day 2, to Normandy: The Normandy beaches tour is an all day tour and included. We began in Arromanches for a tour of the museum that included a movie about the Normandy invasion. Very informative and sobering. Lunch was included here and we did have time to shop in this beautiful seaside town. Next we drove to Longues sur Mer to see the various gun batteries along the sea. Many still remain and it is hard to believe such ugliness could have been in the beautiful place. We then went to the American cemetery. It is hard to describe this place and all that it means. When we got off the bus we were given long stemmed roses to place on a grave. My husband and I looked for soldiers from our state. There was a ceremony at the memorial where all veterans in our group participated. It was moving and very sad. When they played taps, there was not one person with dry eyes. Our program director was probably the most emotional and she isn't American. We had time to visit the museum here, too, and it is heartbreaking and moving but a must see. We then went to Omaha Beach were we could walk on the beach and view the beautiful memorial there. This is one of the most important tours we have ever taken. There is also a tour for Canadians and Brits. Highly recommended. It is a long day, but worth it. Les Andelys: Beautiful town. We did not take the walking tour as my husband got a virus and wasn't feeling up to climbing to the castle, which was OK by me! We walked the town on our own and did some shopping and returned to the ship. It was another beautiful day so I found a nice spot and read looking out over this picturesque town! Getting back to my husband, he did not make it to dinner that night because he wanted to feel better for our trip to Versailles the next day. I went to dinner and saw they were serving French onion soup and I asked our waiter if I could get a bowl to take to my husband. Not 2 minutes later, Susann, our Program Director, came to my table with a tray with soup and break and butter for him. I walked with her to our room to give it to him and he was so shocked an happy. From then on every time she saw us she would ask how he was. That is the kind of service you receive on this ship! Paris: We opted for the Versailles excursion. We drove to Versailles where we were put into groups for the tour. We had a great tour guide who was British and really knew his way around! His tour was informative and fun. We toured the gardens first and they were beautiful but Paris had recently had a frost and all the flowers were gone. Still beautiful in the October sun and blue sky! The inside tour was very informative and beautiful. If you don't want to pay for this excursion, the staff will happily show you how to get a bus from the port to Versailles. There you can pay your own admission but in busy times, this may not be the best way to go. We were there in October and it was still very busy and having a guide was very helpful. We returned to the ship for lunch. You could also opt to get a shuttle into the city and do your own thing all day until the shuttle returned at 6:00 PM. There were many folks who did this. There is a Paris by Night excursion and our friends had told us it was just drive by's. I guess if you haven't seen Paris at night it would be worth it, but just know you do not stop anywhere. Disembarking was quick and we were transported to the airport. Some were opting for an extension in Paris or on their own. There are many presentations throughout the week as well as food sampling and special menus for both lunch and dinner. There are games in the bar at night, music playing and many fun things to do. The majority of the people on this cruise are in their 50's or 60's although you may find younger people. But this doesn't mean quiet and stodgy! These people like to party! Most are very well traveled and very friendly. On such a small cruise you are bound to meet people that you will enjoy dinner with as well as the excursion. This was one of the best things about this cruise! We had the beverage package even though you do have wine and beer included for lunch and dinner. I'm glad we did but not sure I would to it again. We loved this entire cruise. People ask if we preferred the southern cruise over the northern and there is no way to answer that. They are both spectacular in the sites and experiences. We are so looking forward to our next Viking River Cruise next December for the Christmas markets. Read Less
Sail Date October 2016
We originally chose this cruise to see the beaches @ Normandy because our fathers landed there. We have been to Paris a number of times, so we enjoyed Paris on our own except for a late night "Paris under the lights" bus tour ... Read More
We originally chose this cruise to see the beaches @ Normandy because our fathers landed there. We have been to Paris a number of times, so we enjoyed Paris on our own except for a late night "Paris under the lights" bus tour with a stop at the Eiffel tower..We were pleasantly surprised with the rest of the ports we stopped at. Monet's Gardens were extravagant and the excursions being included with local guides over a headset in our ears made it extremely informative. The beaches at Normandy were outstanding with stops at two beaches and an included tour of the museum on the British beach. The ceremony at the American cemetery was emotionally moving with each of us being given a rose to lay on a grave of one of the brave souls who gave their lives to establish a beachhead for the Allies to advance against the Third Reich. The meals and service on board were impeccable. In my estimation it was more than worth the investment. Crew was very friendly. The concierge went out of her way to help a friend traveling with us to pack and ship an oversize picture with frame he had purchased. Even the meal provided in a restaurant in one of the beach towns was outstanding. I will definitely cruise with Viking a third time. We had done the Christmas Markets on the Romantic Danube before this cruise and liked it very much as well. Viking is launching ships and expanding, but keeping the quality of its products and service at a high level. Other European River Cruise companies may appeal to those with "snobby" attitudes, but for my money, the value is exceptional with Viking. Read Less
Sail Date July 2016
At the time of our cruise, Paris and the Seine were experiencing some of the worst flooding in decades. We were apprehensive about what might happen. Viking and its wonderful staff went out of their way to make the experience fantastic! ... Read More
At the time of our cruise, Paris and the Seine were experiencing some of the worst flooding in decades. We were apprehensive about what might happen. Viking and its wonderful staff went out of their way to make the experience fantastic! They had to juggle itineraries, arrange for transportation, and deal with Mother Nature all at once, yet it was seamless. The food on board was excellent. While we had plenty of options (dinner, for example, had several nightly specials along with a fixed menu), the selection was easy -- every night I just told the waiter, "Bring me the Chef's recommendations!" I was never disappointed. Breakfast and lunch were also tremendous. The excursions were well executed, with friendly and well-qualified guides everywhere we went. We booked a trip to the Palace at Versailles, at an additional charge, but arrived to find that the staff at the Palace had gone on strike (the Viking staff, ever alert to these things, warned us the night before that it might happen). I called Viking the first business day after we returned to ask about a refund, and the friendly customer service rep advised that the refund had already been completed -- days before I even called. As for the destinations: Viking bills the cruise we took as "Paris and the Heart of Normandy." We loved it so much that we are considering doing the same cruise again, even though Viking offers plenty of other trips. Monet's gardens at Giverny, the beautiful Medieval city of Rouen, and the D-Day landing beaches at Normandy were all fantastic. My wife and I have been on the "Big Boat" cruises, but never again! The River Cruise concept, and especially Viking's execution, is all we'll do from now on. The smaller boat, with a small passenger size (but great staff to passenger ratio) made the River Cruise much more enjoyable. The number of ports gives you plenty to see, and river sailing is nice and smooth. We met many wonderful fellow travelers, and the question always came up: "Is this your first Viking cruise?" For my wife and I, the answer was "Yes." But, for the majority of people, it was, "No, this is my second" or third or fourth or fifth. The number of repeat Viking River Cruise customers says it all -- we are looking forward to our next one! Read Less
Sail Date June 2016
This was our first journey to Europe. We were introduced to Viking by friends who accompanied us on the cruise. We used Viking Air which includes transportation to and from the airport. The Viking agent actually walked all passengers in ... Read More
This was our first journey to Europe. We were introduced to Viking by friends who accompanied us on the cruise. We used Viking Air which includes transportation to and from the airport. The Viking agent actually walked all passengers in our van into the airport to ensure we had no problems navigating the check-in process. We traveled on the Viking Rinda, cruising down the Seine from Paris to Normandy. What a wonderful and carefree way to travel. The Viking experience offers excellent customer service from start to finish. Staff on board the ship go out of their way to engage in conversation and ensure your care and comfort. Cuisine is very good and the chef incorporates local recipes to enhance the ambiance and experience of local flavors. Dining is freestyle which offers the opportunity to make new friends. We had a French Balcony cabin with a wonderful view out the sliding glass door. The bed was very comfortable. There is ample storage and space to store all travel necessities. There is also very good in room entertainment. Wifi is available at no cost, but can be spotty at times, depending on location. We absolutely loved the tours. Viking handles everything and excursions ran smoothly and on time. We elected to add a couple special tours, Palace of Versailles and Paris by Night. We happened to be at the beaches of Normandy on Memorial Day, which was very touching. Cruising down the Seine is beautiful and peaceful. The gardens and home of Monet were exquisite. We experienced art and history at it's best through the great planning of Viking River Cruises. Read Less
Sail Date May 2016
The cruise was a birthday present for my wife who is a water-colorist and wanted to se Monet's home, gardens, etc. I was interested in the beaches of Normandy, The cruise was fantastic and made so by the staff, ship, food and ... Read More
The cruise was a birthday present for my wife who is a water-colorist and wanted to se Monet's home, gardens, etc. I was interested in the beaches of Normandy, The cruise was fantastic and made so by the staff, ship, food and tours. The staff was so attentive and focused on the passengers. The ship was beautiful, comfortable and cabin was great. The food was magnificent. The tours were all very good and made so by the quality of the tour guides. Each one we had was different but so well versed in the local history and fact. Made each tour memorable and never boring. If there was a negative it was waking up after we had docked somewhere to find the wall of another ship against our balcony or window of the other ships dining room. We will definitely take Viking again soon. Again, the staff was great. Thank you Read Less
Sail Date May 2016
Went from Paris to Normandy. Visited the Louvre, Museum D'Orsay, Eifel Tower, Notre Dame Cathedral, and shopping in Paris. Our tour guide, Ken, was all world. The first day we said after him, Bon Jour, siv vous ple. The ... Read More
Went from Paris to Normandy. Visited the Louvre, Museum D'Orsay, Eifel Tower, Notre Dame Cathedral, and shopping in Paris. Our tour guide, Ken, was all world. The first day we said after him, Bon Jour, siv vous ple. The French people could not have been more welcoming, hospitable and helpful. Then to Monet;s home and gardens. Awesome, beautiful, spectacular. Son Brian =, an artist, took more than a150 dazzling pictures of the flowers and gardens. The colors of the flowers jumped out at you! The river journey was smooth and almost comforting. Then to Rouen, and a tour of Notre Dame Cathedral and a newly constructed church in the shape of a boat. The story of Joan of Arc is different than what we learned as children. She must have been one great lady with faith much greater than mine. Then on to Normandy. It was overwhelming. When we came back to the ship, our room was ship shape, and the food and wine at dinner were better than good. When you arrive at the cemetery (we were at the American), it reminds you of the true cost of war. All those young men, probably an average age of 22, from so many countries who gave their lives for their nations. They had veterans in the group come up, and then saluted them with the crowd singing the Star Spangled Banner. Tears were like raindrops on a light day. I am so thankful to those who served and those who sacrificed their lives so that we were able to come to Europe as free men and women. Viking was top shelf. As the old American comedian would say-Try it, you'll like it! Read Less
Sail Date May 2016
We have always wanted to go on a river cruise and Viking seemed like a good choice. We were right and we had a wonderful time. We hope to go on another river cruise in the future. The staff was very friendly and efficient. The cruise ... Read More
We have always wanted to go on a river cruise and Viking seemed like a good choice. We were right and we had a wonderful time. We hope to go on another river cruise in the future. The staff was very friendly and efficient. The cruise director, Ken, was absolutely fabulous. We had great shore excursions. Even the weather was fine. Our time in Paris was very memorable, so much so that we cannot wait to return. The views from our cabin were just wonderful. Being able to sit on our balcony and watch the Siene come to us was terrific. We met some wonderful traveling partners, that we hope to travel with again, in the future. The food, on board was great. I could go on and on. The best thing that I can say is that I highly recommend this or any river cruise to anyone who asks. And I would certainly recommend that if they take one, go with Viking River Cruises. Read Less
Sail Date April 2016
We love the river cruises because they are so relaxing and you see so much more of the countryside. We had been on the Grand European Cruise the year before and absolutely loved it, So we decided to go on another cruise. We always wanted ... Read More
We love the river cruises because they are so relaxing and you see so much more of the countryside. We had been on the Grand European Cruise the year before and absolutely loved it, So we decided to go on another cruise. We always wanted to go to Normandy so the is why we chose Paris to Normandy.. Were really enjoyed all the sights, especially Normandy. Normandy was very moving emotionally but very rewarding. We loved it. It was a long day, but totally worth it. Paris was wonderful and the sights are marvelous! We always had plenty of time on our own. The other ports were wonderful also. The food was delicious and the wines always complimented the food. The people on the cruise were all so nice and friendly. The crew was exceptional. They were so accommodating to us. The cruise line has the departure plan down to a science and it works beautifully. This was a wonderful cruise to celeste our 50th wedding anniversary. Read Less
Sail Date December 2015
Viking offers the most in depth cruise I have ever been a part of. From the staff, the ship, the local tour guides and the delicious food I could not have asked for more. They really do treat you like royalty on these cruises and I would ... Read More
Viking offers the most in depth cruise I have ever been a part of. From the staff, the ship, the local tour guides and the delicious food I could not have asked for more. They really do treat you like royalty on these cruises and I would recommend this to all my friends. By the way, this was right after the Paris attacks and I could not have felt more safe on and off the ship. The European Union is really trying its best to secure all its borders and make traveling as safe and easy as possible. The food on board was really good too, we had a choice every night of a seafood, a meat(chicken,lamb, or steak) and a vegetarian. My waiter saw that I was a big eater and offered double portions on all my meals or asked if I would like to try multiple meals all at once for dinner. It did not feel awkward at all, they were extremely accommodating. I even bought some local French cheeses and the chef offered to vacuum seal them so I could keep them fresh on the way back to the states. Every night before dinner the program director, the hotel manager and the chef were truly amazing. They really seemed to enjoy their job as they presented day in and day out. On a side note we went during the Christmas markets and they were fantastic. We did not get to see the Monet Gardens but they made up for it by taking us to where Van Gogh was nearing the end of his troubled life and it was a beautiful little town and a nice walk on the countryside. Can't wait for my 3rd Viking Cruise! Read Less
Sail Date December 2015
The boat, food and crew were excellent. The overall experience was very positive but thought some things needed to be said. First off, as in other reviews, leaving from Le Pecq and not Paris was a huge disappointment. The area in Le ... Read More
The boat, food and crew were excellent. The overall experience was very positive but thought some things needed to be said. First off, as in other reviews, leaving from Le Pecq and not Paris was a huge disappointment. The area in Le Pecq was really awful and our veranda room looked at a area under the dock for much of the time. We couldn't even use it because an RV was parked outside with people living in it. (Viking needs to have that removed). Actually for the 8 days we only stepped on the balcony a couple of times since the views were of docks, other boats, or it was night time with nothing to see. For this itinerary, the extra $1000 for the room over a French Balcony was wasted. The bus ride to Paris was almost an hour with traffic. Made the bus time too long versus site seeing time. Shore excursions were good, just be prepared with good shoes and to ride buses and walk a lot. The local guides were awesome. The Van Gogh excursion was great but thought it was weird that the boat traveled the river to meet us at our next destination so we missed that whole area of the Seine. Normandy excursion to Omaha beach was the highlight, but it was a long bus ride leaving at 8am and getting back at 645pm. We took the bus to Normandy from Rouen which made no sense since we had so much of the Seine to see north of the city. Didn't really understand why the boat seemed docked more than cruising and actually only went Le Pecq to Rouen and back to Le Pecq. Only had two times where scenic cruising was and it was of the same area going North and South. Guillermo the Director was good at explaining the plans and the chef, Bogdan and Hristo were also great in the dining area. Bottom line is if you want relaxing river time this itinerary is not for you. We will book again with Viking for the Rhine, Main or Danube trips. Met some great people on the trip and have some great memories. The hotel used for the 3 day post cruise was awesome and in a great location. Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
We had a marvelous time. The ship, our cabin, the staff, the meals and alcohol...all of these exceeded our expectations. The town stops and the tours were all excellent. The service was extraordinary; we have never experienced such good ... Read More
We had a marvelous time. The ship, our cabin, the staff, the meals and alcohol...all of these exceeded our expectations. The town stops and the tours were all excellent. The service was extraordinary; we have never experienced such good service anywhere or anyplace. The only confusion and downside was that we ended up sailing from Le Pecq which is a port on the far western edge of Paris. I understand now that Viking River cruises are dependent upon the French government for the port placement and the scheduling of the port that they sail in and out of. Apparently this gets shifted around a lot and the company has no control over this aspect of the river cruise business. I imagine that this must be highly irritating for Viking River cruises to contend with in scheduling and in dealing with customers. Our fantasy had been to sail from Port Alma in central Paris which would have been a grand exit and entry point. As we arrived a week early to explore Paris, this port change meant we had to take a taxi from the 7th arrondisement to Le Pecq which was quite a trek. (Viking River Cruise gave us a substantial shipboard voucher for drinks for our trouble which was quite nice). As it turned out, we were there during the attacks of November 13th and Le Pecq was a good place for us to be situated as docking in central Paris would not have been possible nor desirable. On that note, I must say that the shipboard staff handled that whole dreadful situation with calm, ease and aplomb. There was no heightening of anxiety but it was all taken quite seriously even so. They managed, at the last minute, as Paris was in lockdown, to get a tour for everyone to see Chartre cathedral. I found this quite remarkable and it reveals a powerful efficiency. Another note. I was absolutely appalled by and ashamed for many of my fellow American travelers. The staff, bartenders, table staff, room cleaning staff, tour guides and all the people in the kitchen are dependent upon the gratuity that the passengers contribute. The suggestions in the handbook that you will receive is an excellent guide. If you can afford to go on a river cruise and disembark for the daily tours then you can afford to pay the suggested gratuity! Given that it was the absolute best service we have ever received the gratuity was ENTIRELY reasonable and amounted to about E300 plus what we gave seperately to some extraordinary individuals. Read Less
Sail Date November 2015
Following our first river cruise with Viking from Paris to Normandy in spring 2015 we decided to some day take another. The availability, timing and opportunity to join previous Viking cruise friends made an easy decision of cruising again ... Read More
Following our first river cruise with Viking from Paris to Normandy in spring 2015 we decided to some day take another. The availability, timing and opportunity to join previous Viking cruise friends made an easy decision of cruising again in fall 2015 experiencing the Grand European River Cruise. We met our friends and made many new friends. Food was great and offered the best of the regions we passed. Our third Viking cruise is just ahead this fall. The Viking arranged 4 day pre-cruise in Paris was exceptional. Viking provided their own Consigier, in addition to the hotel's Consigier. His recommendations were exactly correct and allowed us to maximize our opportunities to visit museums and events without waiting in museum lines. The restaurants recommeded fit our daily needs without exception. The Viking Cruise staff are obviously chosen by top management to ensure knowledge, language, humor, entertainment and absolute responsibility to us - the passengers. An unexpected pleasure was the routine professional guest professors and subject matter experts who provided lectures with slide presentations and often attire and examples of the products of the region. Not having to pack and unpack daily is an underestimated surprise experience. A walk down the deck to the restaurants following daily pre-briefings of the next day's opportunities became a daily favorite for us and our friends. The following dinners could not have been better in quality, quantity and variety. Exquisite in setting and presentation, yet casual in attire and atmosphere. Do read the advanced literature to know what to expect for weather, clothing and comfort. Read Less
Sail Date September 2015
We had a wonderful time on our trip to London and Paris. Our glass is always half full. However there is something you need to know about the Viking Cruise ship Rinda. Viking advertised (and continues to advertise) "Paris to ... Read More
We had a wonderful time on our trip to London and Paris. Our glass is always half full. However there is something you need to know about the Viking Cruise ship Rinda. Viking advertised (and continues to advertise) "Paris to Normandy". We received an e-mail advising us of a dock change 3 days before sailing. The explanation for the change in the docking location was that a permit from the French government for the Rinda to use the Paris docking location had not yet been received. Later in the week we were told by the Program Director, this Viking Ship cannot dock in Paris because it is too big to pass under the bridges in Paris. Viking Cruise line knew this at least as far back as March 2015, (As posted by Tipsy Girl) but continues to sell "PARIS to Normandy". Instead we dock about an hour's bus ride away from Paris in a town called La Pecq. I guess La Pecq wouldn't market as well. This was a huge disappointment because we had planned our trip around the time we would have with three full days docked in Paris, to explore the city and return to the ship to eat or rest between visits. Our itinerary was considerably modified due to the new docking location and the optional tours of the Louvre and Versailles were both scheduled for our last cruise day, These tours were originally scheduled for different days, exhausting having both tours in one day. According to Typsy Girl, a similar situation in April 2014 took place on the Viking Forseti in Bordeaux. The ship had not yet received a permit from the French government to go under a specific bridge on the cruise route, so their itinerary was modified. We were also scheduled to dock at Con Flans but instead we had to bus from La Pecq to get there as well. There were other River Cruise ships docked at Con Flans, but for some reason Viking decided not to dock there. Viking reserves the right to change ports without notification. A change is one thing, but Viking never intended to dock in Paris in the first place. This was very deceitful and I would not recommend Viking for any future cruises. As for the rest of the cruise...Yes, the entire staff were terrific, the food was good and seeing Normandy was very emotional. In spite of it all....We had a wonderful time! Read Less
Sail Date May 2015
Viking Rinda Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabin 4.0 N/A
Dining 4.0 4.6
Entertainment 3.0 4.0
Public Rooms 5.0 4.7
Fitness & Recreation 1.0 N/A
Family 1.0 3.5
Shore Excursions 4.0 N/A
Enrichment Activities 4.0 N/A
Service 4.0 4.9
Value for Money 3.0 N/A

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