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1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2018
From all cruises my wife and I have taken in the past, none of them hold a candle to the accommodations and friendly staff that we experienced on this cruise with Viking. I was extremely impressed with Viking Air and the staff members ... Read More
From all cruises my wife and I have taken in the past, none of them hold a candle to the accommodations and friendly staff that we experienced on this cruise with Viking. I was extremely impressed with Viking Air and the staff members that met us when we arrived and those who stayed with us till we left. The 3 day precruise visit to Prague was also impressive, with the 5 star hotel acommodations and Viking concierge. The excursions preselected by the cruise line were extremely informative and fun, even though temperatures remained in the 30s F. The food was outstanding in every way with specialized foods from regions we visited. I was concerned about sailing without the many venues and activities seen on larger boats, but my concerned was quickly suppressed in that the staff keeps you extremely busy every hour of each day. Most everyone on the boat were like us. A little apprehensive, but willing to make the best of our cruise. We watched out for one another and helped each other whenever we could. This was the winning solution of friendships made. Our dinner table started at 4, it quickly grew to 12, and still was not big enough to gather and share all our adventures. My wife keeps telling everyone that the cruise with Viking was the best vacation she has ever been on. We developed friendships with many new people, and still connecting online since the cruise. We have already booked another cruise with Viking for November 2020 Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2018
We, husband (75) and wife (62), have completed three Viking River cruises; Bordeaux (16), Rhine (17) and lastly Rhone (18). Our latest Viking cruise was up the Rhone River in France, from Avignon to Lyon, 28 October - December 4, 2018. ... Read More
We, husband (75) and wife (62), have completed three Viking River cruises; Bordeaux (16), Rhine (17) and lastly Rhone (18). Our latest Viking cruise was up the Rhone River in France, from Avignon to Lyon, 28 October - December 4, 2018. Our ship was the Buri, and as far as we could tell, it was virtually identical to our previous ships, the Forseti and the Hlin; all relatively new, extremely nice ships. In 2016 and again this year, we had one of the cheapest, if not the cheapest, cabins on the lowest level, with the small, elevated windows because the cabins were half-underwater. Last year we had a cabin on the top deck with a balcony, but since we almost did not use the balcony, and primarily only used our cabin for sleeping, we think our Category E, 150 square feet cabin was sufficient. Our cabin number was #150, the most forward of the cabins. This was an advantage, since it was close to the dining room and lounge, and everything else, and we did not have to walk down a long hall to get to our cabin. Unless we get some super deal on a "better" cabin in the future, I will book a Standard cabin as far forward as possible. We extended three days in Dijon; a wonderful city. Last year we did a pre-extension in Amsterdam. The year before in Bordeaux, we did not extend; and we regretted it. I highly recommend one extends (always three days I think) pre or post cruise, if not both. Why not extend to enjoy some interesting city/town once you have flown all the way to your destination, and then take a relatively short seven-day cruise? If at the end of a cruise, you will otherwise be rushed off the ship to a bus after arriving, and will be directly transferred to the airport for your flight home without giving you the chance of visiting your departure port. At the initial departure port, you will usually have the opportunity to see something of your departure city. Adding a pre or post extension adds three days to your seven-day cruise, so your vacation will last at least ten days if not 13 days for both. Another suggestion is to sign up for at least one, if not two, excursions every day. Viking usually offers included (aka free) walking tours at every docking site. We usually take these excursions except when they conflict with a more interesting Optional (aka expensive) excursion. Yes, the Optional tours can be expensive, but they are usually great experiences. Not once have we regretted paying for Optional tours. In fact, our best memories, and most spoken experiences to others have been these Optional excursions. Most of the Optional excursions include nice bus rides in very nice buses to get you to desired sites. On our last trip, they always had a "Leisure" walking group, among the 2-3 total groups for the Included excursion, which I took because of my age/arthritis. My younger, healthier wife always went with the other walking groups that walked faster, and climbed more stairs. We still had breakfast and lunch together; it just meant that for two hours we were separated in different walking groups. We really enjoyed all the towns/cities we visited. My favorite was the very pretty, interesting, completely walled medieval city of Perouges. We also liked Avignon, Lyon and especially Dijon, and actually all points between. On the negative side, I would suggest not going in late October as we did, even though the cruise/cabins are cheaper at that time (that is why we did it). It rained at least half the time, but was not too cold. The ship has enough large umbrellas for all. We took umbrellas with us on the bus, as well as our walking tours, and if not needed simply left them on the bus when we were out of the bus. To add to the sometimes bad or marginal weather, there is the famous "Mistral" wind. Look it up on the internet. In southern France, it blows 120-160 days a year, from 54 mph to 90 mph, averaging 65 mph. I can attest that it can be a challenge walking in the rain when the Mistral is blowing. However, we survived, and were not significantly bummed-out by the weather during our trip. Some passengers sometimes stayed on-board rather than brave the bad weather, but they missed a lot. In conclusion, we once-again enjoyed our cruise + extension, and hope to book another cruise in 2019, this time on Portugal's Douro River with extension in Lisbon or possibly Spain if we can find a real sale (it always 2 for 1, so that is not a sale) price that includes free air from the West Coast. If you have not already figured it out, probably every other River cruise company is cheaper, and many have very high ratings. We will wait a couple of months for Viking to offer a good deal on the internet on a Portugal cruise, and if not forthcoming, will start investigating with Tauck, AmaWaterways, Crystal, Uniworld, and Scenic River Cruises as well as Overseas Adventure Travel and Grand Circle travel. These all provide quality River cruises, and likely at more reasonable prices than Viking. I really like Viking so I just hope I can find a Portugal trip that I can afford. There is only thing about Viking that I do not like. It is their automated flight scheduling computer program. When you book with Viking, and get the discounted or free flights, unless you pay $100 extra for each passenger for Viking's Air Plus, their computer will do all the scheduling, and it could be horrible! This is what happened to us this year. As I have written, we paid for the three-day Dijon extension. This required a two-hour bus/car transfer from Lyon to Dijon and then three days later back to Lyon where the airport is. Their computer system booked us on an early morning flight out of Lyon, so in order to make that flight; we would have had to get up in the middle of the night (actually very early morning!) in our Dijon hotel to take a bus/car to Lyon airport in time to make our flight. This was ridiculous. We paid for a three-night extension in Dijon, not a 2-1/2 night extension. I complained loudly, received no relief, paid the $200 for the Air Plus, got my flight schedules revised to be reasonable, wrote some negative reviews on line, and ended up with Viking reimbursing me for the Air Plus charges; thank you Viking. There were 14 of us from the cruise that booked the Dijon extension. Everyone but us had the same or similar problem, but had not complained and got it corrected. Therefore, 12 of them had to leave our nice Dijon 5-star hotel in the middle of the night to get to Lyon in time for their flights. I will definitely gladly pay the $100/passenger for Air Plus next time to either initially get a reasonable schedule, or perhaps only pay if they screw it up again. I guess I know what to expect now; and so should you. Well, I hope you have a good cruise. I hope Viking will allow us to make a fourth cruise with them, next year to Portugal. Read Less
Sail Date: April 2018
Locations visited and length of cruise was perfect. The staff was exceptional, and the food was delicious and plentiful! The wait staff kept the wine glasses filled as requ at both lunch and dinner. Although we weren’t on the optional ... Read More
Locations visited and length of cruise was perfect. The staff was exceptional, and the food was delicious and plentiful! The wait staff kept the wine glasses filled as requ at both lunch and dinner. Although we weren’t on the optional drink plan, the wine selections were very good. It was a very comfortable journey...not rushed, and we enjoyed the actual cruise alng the rivers. Seeing the scenery of vineyards, small villages, old castles, windmills and large cities lit up at night was an unexpected delight and it was glorious. On our last evening in Budapest, the captain took the boat out on the river to see the glorious lighting on all the buildings. It was beautiful! Because of the smaller size and fewer passengers, we had time to meet, chat with and relax at the lunches and dinners with other guests. We would sit with some several times at both lunch and dinner, as well as see them on the daily walking tours. We exchanged contact information with some of them. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2017
We went on this cruise because it was a good way to see Europe without having to plan out the whole trip. The ship was great! All of the crew was AMAZING. The food was really good too! Our family ate on the boat for almost every meal. ... Read More
We went on this cruise because it was a good way to see Europe without having to plan out the whole trip. The ship was great! All of the crew was AMAZING. The food was really good too! Our family ate on the boat for almost every meal. There were always so many options to pick from and the waiters really took the time to get to know you. We also met most of our friends during meal times. EVERYONE that we talked to on the boat was so nice. We made so many new friends who we are planning on visiting in the future. The excursions were fantastic. It was helpful that we had a guided tour at each location because it helped us know where we were and where we needed to meet to get back on the boat. I would recommend Viking to anyone because it was effortless to plan. The whole trip was planned out for you and all you had to do was show up. It was perfect for a family or couple or individual who has never been to Europe before. I think our whole family would go on another Viking Cruise. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2016
We chose Viking’s Grand European cruise because I wanted to see the Robber Baron's' castles on the Rhine. We did that and so much more. Viking Modi traveled from Budapest to Amsterdam on three rivers and two canals. We passed ... Read More
We chose Viking’s Grand European cruise because I wanted to see the Robber Baron's' castles on the Rhine. We did that and so much more. Viking Modi traveled from Budapest to Amsterdam on three rivers and two canals. We passed through 68 locks and under a multitude of bridges. Our onshore excursions took us to castles and palaces, cathedrals and synagogues, marketplaces and cemeteries, cities and towns. Expert tour guides explained art and history. We ate marvelous food and drank excellent wines. We made friends and shared experiences with other mature, educated passengers who wanted to learn about the world and were more interested in education than entertainment. I climbed to the top of a cathedral, made weisswurst in Germany, attended a Mozart and Strauss concert in Vienna, and saw masterpieces in Amsterdam's two world-class museums. Our journey was as busy and as relaxing as we wanted it to be. The crew treated us like royalty every mile of the way. This was our second Viking River Cruise and we are both eager to take another one. I recommend Viking highly to all my friends and relatives. You can read more about my Viking Grand European Cruise on my blog at: • That Little Old Wurstmaker, Me: http://bit.ly/2fK2gwL • Low Bridges and High Castles: http://aknextphase.com/low-bridges-and-high-castles/ • The 68 River Locks from Budapest to Amsterdam: http://aknextphase.com/68-river-locks-from-budapest-to-amsterdam/ • Our Viking European River Cruise: http://aknextphase.com/viking-european-river-cruise/ o Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2016
When thinking about our Viking cruise up the Elbe I will always remember Guntar...he looked and talked like Arnold. Which made the trip extra entertaining. The crew was so warm and embracing. Every single one was there to help make our ... Read More
When thinking about our Viking cruise up the Elbe I will always remember Guntar...he looked and talked like Arnold. Which made the trip extra entertaining. The crew was so warm and embracing. Every single one was there to help make our trip as enjoyable as could be. The wait staff was above and beyond. After one meal they knew what your drink preferences were and had them immediately ready. Food was plenty and most often very delicious. The breads were absolutely heavenly. Found myself enjoying seed bread and Brie at every meal, and sometimes for my meal. Just superb. The Malbec wine that was served was also perfect for our taste. The daily excursions were easy going, but very interesting, informative and entertaining. Trip to the beer pub stands out, as does the castle where we sampled the best struddle. The little town that became the concentration camp all Though sad was a must see, for history sake. Really shook me up though. Treats like warm cookies or schnapps waiting for us upon return from an excursion were a special from the captain. He seemed like he really enjoyed having us all on his beautiful ship. Yes the Beyla is a must take river cruise. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2016
Great trip with many stops through Europe. Ship was in wonderful shape, almost new condition. Crew from the Captain on down were fantastic, all were excellent personnel. Made friends with several of them. Food and beverages ... Read More
Great trip with many stops through Europe. Ship was in wonderful shape, almost new condition. Crew from the Captain on down were fantastic, all were excellent personnel. Made friends with several of them. Food and beverages were first rate with something different most any day. Other passengers seemed to also enjoy their experience. We made several friends on the voyage. Sleeping Cabin was a little tight, however comfortable. Housekeeping seemed to go out of their to maintain everything. During the trip the wife and I Celebrate our 43rd Anniversary. Both the Housekeeping and Dining Crew made it Special Occasion. The main topic of the Vacation was the sightseeing of the Danude River and it's associate water ways. This to include the many stops at cities and landmarks. Excursions at all included plus other at additional charge. The ones we took were really something special in both the viewing and the tour guide's shared knowledge and stories associated with the location site. Note a whole lot of fantastic churches, war artifacts and wine related items. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2016
We spent a couple of days in Amsterdam prior to embarking, which helped with jet lag and acclimating to being on vacation. Getting to and on the ship was a snap. The attention to detail and thoughtfulness of all of the staff was ... Read More
We spent a couple of days in Amsterdam prior to embarking, which helped with jet lag and acclimating to being on vacation. Getting to and on the ship was a snap. The attention to detail and thoughtfulness of all of the staff was remarkable. Everyone was very helpful and friendly and seemed to be enjoying themselves as well. The restaurant was top notch. Really appreciated the daily briefings and the onboard presentations. The glassblower was a lot of fun and had some interesting stories. Just a wonderful and relaxed way to visit so many beautiful towns that I otherwise would probably have not experienced. The coordination with off shore excursions was seamless and the local guides made the experiences intimate and fun. I appreciated the time for wandering around unscripted also. Our trip extension to Prague was wonderful and the Viking hospitality continued on dry land. Overall a wonderful experience that I would recommend to anyone! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2016
I can't say enough about our wonderful journey on this beautiful Viking longboat. The staff were absolutely amazing...every one of them warm, caring and always smiling. The organization of embarking, daily tours, special events, was ... Read More
I can't say enough about our wonderful journey on this beautiful Viking longboat. The staff were absolutely amazing...every one of them warm, caring and always smiling. The organization of embarking, daily tours, special events, was impeccable. Often after an afternoon excursion, as we entered the ship there'd be waiters in the lobby to welcome us back with a cocktail and appetizer. Food was delicious...dinner was 5 star restaurant quality. Loved the included wine and beer. Entertainers from local towns were very good. Our onboard pianist was delightful. The included tours were great, with informative and fun guides. Loved the fact that there were only 180+ passengers so able to meet and chat with at least half of them. Many were "world travellers" and I didn't hear one complaint from anyone. Everyone I talked with was very impressed, found the journey & the ship very relaxing, and they ould definitely do another river cruise....us too! Kudos to Viking!! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2016
This was a multi-generational vacation, and we considered the location, number of days, ease of traveling to and from, and ship size. Viking River cruises have a great reputation, and this trip certainly lived up to all of our ... Read More
This was a multi-generational vacation, and we considered the location, number of days, ease of traveling to and from, and ship size. Viking River cruises have a great reputation, and this trip certainly lived up to all of our expectations! The ship was the perfect size, and the staff made it easy on all of us to travel, dine, relax and enjoy the entire experience. The suite was beautiful and a comfortable haven for mom, and the cabins for the rest of us had everything we wanted. The dining was fabulous, and every single meal was a fun adventure. What made the cruise exceptional and memorable, though, was the crew and service. Every single person we met went above and beyond to make the experience enjoyable, and their fun-loving nature and professionalism were a delight! The excursions were okay, and we look forward to booking our next Viking River cruise to new locales! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2016
We had traveled with Viking before (Danube) and were very satisfied. My husband"s mother is very frail and the risk free offer really meant a lot to us. Paris was one of the few international cities that we had not visited. First ... Read More
We had traveled with Viking before (Danube) and were very satisfied. My husband"s mother is very frail and the risk free offer really meant a lot to us. Paris was one of the few international cities that we had not visited. First time on a Long Boat (Rolf). We were met with a smile at Charles DeGaulle Airport. Crew went out of their way constantly. The cabin was well appointed and the bed was so comfortable. The ship was quiet at night so sleeping was a real nice dream. Dining was just wonderful. Food was fabulous! We like picking a different group to dine with each meal if we wanted. We met so many wonderful people. Entertainment was small but really well done. Loved the piano in the bar. The player was really talented. The crew was so helpful and cheerful. Loved the shore excursions. Especially the trip to Josephine and Napoleon's house and Normandy. Monet's Garden was just lovely. The Lourve was crowded and the many stairs were difficult to maneuver, but glad we saw the Mona Lisa, although anticlimactic. Dress was business casual or casual. My husband brought a sport coat and never wore it. No fancy dress for the capitan's dinner. I have told friends and family that we will travel only with Viking. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2016
The cruise was all we expected it to be and more. All the crew were extremely friendly and helpful. The food was excellent. The scenery was fantastic. The tours were very organized and informative and all the tour guides were superior ... Read More
The cruise was all we expected it to be and more. All the crew were extremely friendly and helpful. The food was excellent. The scenery was fantastic. The tours were very organized and informative and all the tour guides were superior to most others we have encountered on other trips and you never missed anything because the guide has a microphone and you get a personal receiver with headphones. The two special highlights of the cruise for us were; The first evening's cruise, after a fabulous dinner, was up and down the Danube in the city of Budapest with all the major buildings, bridges and monuments fully lit up. It was a spectacular scene which we will remember forever. Secondly, the day time cruising through the Wachau Valley in Austria was breath taking. Our very favourite memories were produced by the dining staff and the two special people who looked after us, Carmen and Robert. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2016
I needed to be in China anyway, so we looked at organized travel options to help us find our way around in a very different culture. Viking's Imperial Jewels Of China not only looked like it covered things we really wanted to see, ... Read More
I needed to be in China anyway, so we looked at organized travel options to help us find our way around in a very different culture. Viking's Imperial Jewels Of China not only looked like it covered things we really wanted to see, but the dates meshed perfectly with our existing plans. Only parts of this cruise were actually on the Yangtze river, since it also included sights such as the Great Wall, Forbidden Palace, and Tienanmen Square, in or near Beijing; the Terracotta Warriors in Xi'an; and various other locations in those cities as well as Chongqing, Wuhan, and Shanghai. When we were on land, Viking arranged outstanding hotel accommodations (for us, JW Marriott, Crowne Plaza, and Four Seasons - all exceptional). We were guided to interesting cultural experiences, provided with good food, and our tour guide was sincerely a caring, considerate, and kind individual. On the river boat, the service was even better than those 4- or 5-star hotels, and the food at least as good. Activities, excursions, and free time were all well planned. I'd say "never a dull moment", but if you really needed one, just to relax and unwind, it was allowed! If you go in August, prepare for heat and humidity; we planned to do some laundry, so we didn't have to pack nearly three weeks' worth of clothes; we did not expect to shower and change outfits 2-3 times per day, but it was muggy - still wonderful, but muggy. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2016
We choose this cruise because it went to the Normandy Beach landings. All the other excursions were icing on the cake. We have told all our friends and family what a wonderful cruise it was. The customer service by all the employees was ... Read More
We choose this cruise because it went to the Normandy Beach landings. All the other excursions were icing on the cake. We have told all our friends and family what a wonderful cruise it was. The customer service by all the employees was outstanding. The daily update meeting for what the next day would bring was very informative. The food was THE BEST EVER!. I enjoyed the wine that was recommended to drink at each dinner too! We are currently planning on a next cruise with Viking. We have done ocean cruises in the past, but I prefer the river cruise. It was more quaint and we got chances to meet many wonderful people that we currently are still in touch with. This river cruise was I feel that best value for the money spent. It included the excursions, the airport transfers, breadfast, lunch & dinner. The complimentary wine with lunch and dinner was over the top! In the best way!!. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2016
We chose this cruise as we had never traveled Europe outside of London and Paris. A river cruise allows one to not change rooms, but change venue everyday. We purchased the packaged tours at every stop and they were professionally run ... Read More
We chose this cruise as we had never traveled Europe outside of London and Paris. A river cruise allows one to not change rooms, but change venue everyday. We purchased the packaged tours at every stop and they were professionally run with top notch knowledge, plenty of free time and eating recommendations. We loved the on boat activities as well as just the leisure time. Budapest to Passau, we will be booking another one on the Rhine in the future. Favorite sites stops were Nuremburg trials, city shopping, and Salzburg. We also enjoyed a ballet and musical performance in Vienna with great talent in both dance and voice by the performers. It was also fascinating to just sit up on the deck and enjoy the breeze and see the homes and castles and town squares that passed by us as we made our way up the river to our destination. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2016
Although Basil was a blur, with us arriving later in the day, We were greeted warmly and settled in on the ship with after meeting the staff and crew. The ship is well maintained and easy to navigate to the different decks and areas. The ... Read More
Although Basil was a blur, with us arriving later in the day, We were greeted warmly and settled in on the ship with after meeting the staff and crew. The ship is well maintained and easy to navigate to the different decks and areas. The rooms were on the small side, as were the bathrooms.A 6 ft+ person would find the shower tight. Not much room between the bed and writing area. The off ship activities, tours and excursions, were well planned and the guides very knowledgeable. During the trip my wife became Ill and the staff was fantastic in their help and concern. A local doctor was called and visited. The Hotel staff was very supportive in dietary needs for my wife through out the rest of the trip. Which brings up the main restaurant meals, outstanding! Chef Mario always amazed us with his choices for our meals. Although some of our shore excursions were missed, the scenery from the Sun/Moon deck were phenomenal. Floating down the Rhine river valley was as picturesque a journey as I could have imagined. Although the cost was considerable for us, I felt afterward it was worth the cost. I would highly recommend Viking River Cruises to friends and family. And special thanks to the Hotel Manager Nancy Habets, for all her help and kind consideration. PS. maybe more open mic nights. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2016
Chose this cruise because, living in Spain, we wanted departure and end ports to gave direct flights with our nearest airport - Alicante. Found the ship Mani to be a delight. Cabins were perhaps slightly smaller than our experience with ... Read More
Chose this cruise because, living in Spain, we wanted departure and end ports to gave direct flights with our nearest airport - Alicante. Found the ship Mani to be a delight. Cabins were perhaps slightly smaller than our experience with sea cruises but were perfectly formed and provided everything we needed. The staff couldn't have been more friendly or helpful and every mouthful of every meal was wonderful. We are a mature couple and were pleased that this was largely an adult cruise with only a smattering of teenagers. The ports of call were interesting and the included excursions were enjoyable and varied. The only reason we have not given the full 5 stars overall is that this was comparitively a very expensive holiday and we did feel that it should therefore have been fully all inclusive (and not need the purchase of a "drinks package" to cover all alcoholic drinks other than those with meals) and should have also done away with the almost compulsory need to tip at the end of the cruise. Can't properly judge the "fitness" category below as a) we are fully fit and b) if there were any fitness activities we didn't take part in them. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2016
We were recommended Viking and this cruise in particular by friends who had just returned from it. It was absolutely everything we had hoped for -- the boat was more than adequate to the task, the staff was stellar, the excursions were ... Read More
We were recommended Viking and this cruise in particular by friends who had just returned from it. It was absolutely everything we had hoped for -- the boat was more than adequate to the task, the staff was stellar, the excursions were mostly excellent, the food was great, and the new friends we met on the cruise were great too. The cruise was extremely well planned, and we wanted for nothing on the trip. The highlights of our cruise were Cologne, Heidelberg, and a wonderful culinary tour of Strasbourg ("Taste of Alsace"). Probably the only disappointment was our last excursion to the Black Forest (a long bus ride with little payoff), but it was one of the free ones. We lost 6-7 hours of daylight on our pre-cruise visit to Amsterdam due to equipment failure on the transatlantic flight. This, of course, was not the fault of Viking, and they were excellent in helping change things, and met us at the airport without a hitch. Amsterdam was great, the hotel (Amsterdam Hilton) was perfect, and what time we had there we structured ourselves to great success. Although the boat lacked much standard cruise appointments such as a health club or pool, we found that its size (200 adult-only passengers) was perfect, and those things were not at all missed. We chose the least expensive room, which we recommend, since we only slept there -- too much to do, and great fellow travelers to do it with. We would strongly recommend our boat (the Kara), and this tour, as well as Viking. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2016
When discussing our next vacation we decided to visit France. Since we had previously sailed with Viking we decided that a river cruise in the southern part of France would be exactly what we wanted. Having enjoyed our previous cruise ... Read More
When discussing our next vacation we decided to visit France. Since we had previously sailed with Viking we decided that a river cruise in the southern part of France would be exactly what we wanted. Having enjoyed our previous cruise through The Netherlands & Belgium we had high expectations for this cruise which went from Lyon to Arles with many stops along the way. I am happy to say that all our expectations were not only met but greatly exceeded. All of our arrangements were made directly through Viking. Our flight, which had two connections went smoothly. Someone met us at the airport in Lyon and within two hours we were on board the Viking Delling. From that point everything from the friendliness and attentiveness of their entire staff was refreshing. The stops and tours were all exactly what we hoped for. We could not have been more pleased. As you will see I have rated everything as excellent to rate any category less would not be a fair representation of how we felt about our trip. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2016
We were attracted to river cruising by my mother who has taken several. A group of friends selected this itinerary because it offered several interesting ports. We traveled as a group of ten. We were met at the AMS baggage claim by ... Read More
We were attracted to river cruising by my mother who has taken several. A group of friends selected this itinerary because it offered several interesting ports. We traveled as a group of ten. We were met at the AMS baggage claim by Viking representatives. Were were directed to a staging area, and moments later to motor coaches for transport to our hotel. We opted to add a three day/two night pre cruise stay in Amsterdam. This allowed us to spend time in Amsterdam seeing the sights and museums. On our departure day from Amsterdam we took a walk from the hotel to the dock, approximately three blocks. We were surprised to see the Skirnir tied up that close to the hotel. I happened to see and speak with a crew member and asked when we could board. We were surprised that we were immediately escorted on board, checked in and given a tour of the public areas. Our escort introduced us to the lounge manager. We were asked our names. From that day forward we were always addressed by name. We found the cabin to be smaller than what we had experienced on ocean cruises. However, the cabin was very comfortable. Throughout the cruise our housekeeper ensured that we were always fully supplied with everything we needed. Meals were fantastic. Breakfasts offered a wide selection of cereals, fruits, yogurts, cheeses, smoked fish and freshly prepared to order egg dishes. Lunches could be informal on the lounge deck or more formal in the dining room. Beer, wine, sodas, coffee and other beverages were included. Dinners were always amazing. We got a "briefing" on what to expect from the Chef prior to every dinner. We were never disappointed. Steak, chicken and salmon were always available. In addition there were several choices of appetizers, soups, main courses and desserts. Beer, wine, sodas, coffee and other beverages were included. Shore excursions, included in the cruise, were offered at each port. Tours were escorted by professional tour guides who knew their cities. Viking provided a personal quiet box to allow guests to hear the guides while touring. Tours allowed guests to visit museums, churches, castles and other attractions. Themed meals were included on some tours. We were relieved to see that we were not sold things or encouraged to shop at certain shops in the various ports. There were no children on this cruise. There were some guests that were physically challenged, however there were no guests using mobility devices. There were "gentle" tours for those that elected a slower pace. The Skirnir is a small ship. We had 188 guests on board. "Entertainment" offered on large ocean cruise ships was not offered. There is a full deck for walking and exercise, but no gym. On our departure day a Viking team ensured our transportation to the airport. A team member was with us throughout the check in process and left us when we entered the security check area. We were treated as valued guests at all times by the entire crew. This river cruise was worth every penny of the cost. We highly recommend Viking and the Grand European River Cruise. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2016
We started out in Paris and were bused to Dijon and Lyon, we were supposed to board the vessel and sail to Macon, but the Soane was flooded so we were bused there. The people on the buses were terrific, the food and ship's crew were ... Read More
We started out in Paris and were bused to Dijon and Lyon, we were supposed to board the vessel and sail to Macon, but the Soane was flooded so we were bused there. The people on the buses were terrific, the food and ship's crew were exceptional. The food was excellent. I was a little disappointed that the river was so commercial, not as scenic as I would,have liked. I was getting a little tired,of all the bussing. We enjoyed all the sights and places we saw. The local guides are very knowledgeable and spoke good English. We extended our stay with additional time in Nice, which is a beautiful city. We took a side trip to Eze and Monaco driving along the Riviera, it was gorgeous. Most of the hotels were top rate. Except for the Mercure, not what I expected from Viking Overall I would recommend Viking to anyone. Read Less
Sail Date: May 2016
Chose this cruise because it is a small ship. We like the small ships as they are more customer friendly. We had not been on this one before. This was our first time on Viking and we will go again. Everyone, entertainment (Stein), ships ... Read More
Chose this cruise because it is a small ship. We like the small ships as they are more customer friendly. We had not been on this one before. This was our first time on Viking and we will go again. Everyone, entertainment (Stein), ships crew were very nice and friendly. The food was excellent and the chef came around almost every dinner time to see how we were doing and if the food was fine. We even took a tour of the kitchen and could ask any question about the service or if we wanted any special food. We explored every town the ship docked at and our guides were always very helpful. There was some sort of entertainment every night whether it was the crew or someone or group coming on board the ship. Our cabin was always kept clean. We were notified along the route when ever there was something interesting that we were going to be going by. I can not say enough about the friendliness and courtesy of everyone on this ship. Read Less
Sail Date: May 2016
I wanted to try a riverboat cruise. I love Europe and had never been to Germany, Austria or Hungary. I wanted to see the cities there, especially Vienna. I wanted a full guided experience. I did not want to have to worry about finding ... Read More
I wanted to try a riverboat cruise. I love Europe and had never been to Germany, Austria or Hungary. I wanted to see the cities there, especially Vienna. I wanted a full guided experience. I did not want to have to worry about finding places to eat or to get transportation on our own. I really enjoyed the meals and the convenience of being in one room for the whole week. It was nice to be with a group that was large but not overwhelming. We were well taken care of. I think I would have liked a little more time in the cities, but realize that we had to be moving each day. The scenery was amazing and the towns very charming and different from home. The weather was fine and even though the river was too high for us to arrive by boat in Regensberg and Nuremburg, we got to see these wonderful cities. The many churches and abbeys that we visited were highlights that really put the icing on the cake for me. I have so many special memories now and I think about my trip every day. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: May 2016
We chose Lyon and Provence for food and wine experiences and were not disappointed. The food and wine on the Delling were both quite nice, and we dined at a brasserie in Lyon run by Paul Bocuse, a three-star Michelin chef. I have to ... Read More
We chose Lyon and Provence for food and wine experiences and were not disappointed. The food and wine on the Delling were both quite nice, and we dined at a brasserie in Lyon run by Paul Bocuse, a three-star Michelin chef. I have to admit that we were somewhat spoiled by our prior Viking cruise on the Forsetti since we had a sommelier, Frankie to help us with our local purchases. We were on our own this time, although the front desk and concierge were somewhat helpful in finding decent wine shops. We had some really good shore excursions, but the night tour in Vivier was not so nice since we could not see much and photography was pretty much a waste of time. The ship was essentially identical on each of the two cruises, which gave us a sense of comfort since we knew where everything was. As usual, the crew was most excellent and helpful. We really enjoyed the service of Gabor in the dining room. We travelled with another couple with no children. The cruise director, Oliver, who doubled as "Pierre" was the best we have ever had! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: May 2016
We had heard wonderful things about Viking. My Aunt wanted to do a river cruise to finish out her bucket list for her 96th birthday so we researched and chose Viking. A family group jumped at the chance to join her for this trip. We ... Read More
We had heard wonderful things about Viking. My Aunt wanted to do a river cruise to finish out her bucket list for her 96th birthday so we researched and chose Viking. A family group jumped at the chance to join her for this trip. We chose the Romantic Danube. Had to drive from Cincinnati to Pittsburgh to take advantage of their fare offerings, which were actually very reasonable. We were on Air France (really Delta) and were able to upgrade to comfort plus for $198 round trip. We thought it worth the price. The embarkation was seamless - we were picked up from the airport in a very timely manner, loaded up on a very comfortable big tour bus and taken to the ship where check-in was a breeze. The service of all staff members was impeccable from the room maid Anita, to the bartenders and the dining room wait staff. Special thanks to Sarah and Victor who treated us like family. We mostly went on the included shore excursions which were very interesting with well trained guides. Evening entertainment was provided by the staff and while it was simple we did have fun. The ship layout encourages meeting and socializing with other guests, but you are not forced to if that's not your thing. All six of us pretty much agreed that the only stop we weren't crazy about was our last stop of Nuremberg. Budapest, Vienna, Krems, Passau and Regensburg were all delightful. Unfortunately, the only negative came when it was time to go to the Nuremberg airport. We were dropped off with all our luggage several blocks away from where we were to check in. The guide said she would bring baggage carts for us but after waiting quite a while we dragged our bags as best we could and found her inside chatting with guests. The airport was quite difficult to negotiate - which is not the fault of Viking, but it might be best for them to find a different final city as their final destination. When you have people in their 60s to 90s and a bunch of heavy luggage, it leaves a bad taste to not be able to get any assistance. If I could I would give it about a 4.5 but this doesn't allow that option. We would definitely use Viking again, on a different trip like the Rhine or Elbe or Douro. I would not recommend this cruise for children at all, and think many younger folks - twentysomethings - might find it lacking in social opportunities. The main age group seemed to be late 40's to early 70's with a scattering at either end of that spectrum. Read Less
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