Sail Date: April 2019
This was our third Viking River Cruise (previously did 7 day Rhine and 7 day Danube, both of which I cannot recommend highly enough). Viking does an outstanding job, somethings I wish I had taken into consideration before leaving (which ... Read More
This was our third Viking River Cruise (previously did 7 day Rhine and 7 day Danube, both of which I cannot recommend highly enough). Viking does an outstanding job, somethings I wish I had taken into consideration before leaving (which are completely out of Viking's control). 1. Our cruise began on the Thursday before Easter, this led to crowds and closures at various points of our trip. 2. In preparation for the 2024 Olympic games, Paris has construction projects taking place everywhere, traffic getting in and out of the heart of the city is absolutely dreadful (this from someone born and raised in Los Angeles) 3. Another factor for crowds, a European explained to me, springtime is when many school children take field trips to various locations. 4. Finally, the fire at the Notre Dame Cathedral led to increased tourist traffic at other locations. The Viking staff from booking to final departure were fantastic. We did not take the extension on either side of the trip, but booked our flight to arrive in Paris in the late morning. This allowed us to get our bags on the boat and spend several hours at the Louvre, which otherwise (due to other booked excursions) we would not have been able to see. Embarkation was great, the ship staff are outstanding. Excursion highlights, we took every included excursion (except those that conflicted with paid excursions) - several stops (after leaving Paris) include houses built in the Middle Ages that are incredible to see (Vernon and Rouen). Monet's Garden is beautiful. Out of Rouen we paid for the Farm and Country Tour which was a nice view of the Normandy country side, the farm is a neat experience. The excursion to the beaches of Normandy will leave you with a sense of profound gratitude for the soldiers of the D-Day Invasion. Having studied the history, then touring the site, I still cannot fathom the courage of the men that day. Paris at night was a treat, especially seeing the Eiffel Tower lit up at night. Our cabin steward Filip was great, the room was always perfect. I've seen other reviews where people complain of the size of the cabin, it is not spacious, but sufficient. The only time we are in our cabin is basically to sleep. I cannot speak to the entertainment options in the lounge in the evening, we never attended. We try to stay in town as long, doing as much as we can, after dinner, we're ready for bed. Several people we talked to mentioned the different events were a good time. The food is always top notch and the dining staff attentive to your orders and requests. The guides at each of the locations are always outstanding, usually locals who give you some much more than a guide who read a book about where you are going. At the tour in Versailles, it was absolutely packed, (literally shoulder to shoulder, front to back with people in some rooms), almost impossible. Our guide (I forgot her name) went out of her way trying to keep us together, inform us about the artwork, history, etc, and made the most out of the trip, she was phenomenal there. We will undoubtedly taking Viking again (Portugal, Rhine at Christmas, and the Norwegian Fjords for starters). It was the crowds that took the shine off this trip for us. So if that is an issue for you, the Fall would probably be a better time to book this trip. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2018
We jointed friends who were celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary and had a wonderful time. This was our first river cruise, and we loved the smaller number of people and the included excursions. The food was wonderful and the ... Read More
We jointed friends who were celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary and had a wonderful time. This was our first river cruise, and we loved the smaller number of people and the included excursions. The food was wonderful and the service great. I'm already perusing the Viking brochures for my NEXT river cruise. The ship needed some refurbishing. The common rooms sofas, etc. were pulling apart at the seams, but I'm sure Viking has a refurbishing in mind soon. We found the shore excursions very informative, although some of the local guide's English was hard to understand, so one had to listen closely and I'm sure we missed some of the sightseeing information. We especially enjoyed the beaches at Normandy and happened there on a beautifully clear day in November. The acres of white crosses against the blue sky will be remembered forever. What a sacrifice by so many. Can't wait for our next cruise. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2018
We really enjoyed our time on the Viking Kadlin and the itinerary to Normany. Visiting Normandy was truly a humbling experience. Meeting fellow passengers was delightful and the guided tours were superb. Our only disappointment was the ... Read More
We really enjoyed our time on the Viking Kadlin and the itinerary to Normany. Visiting Normandy was truly a humbling experience. Meeting fellow passengers was delightful and the guided tours were superb. Our only disappointment was the quality of the food at dinner. Maybe because it was the last cruise of the season on the Kadlin but it seemed like we were served a lot of leftovers and not exciting menus. We will definitely sail on Viking again and look forward to experiencing more exciting itineraries and hopefully an improved menu. Our veranda suite was great and our cabin attendant was excellent. As it was cold and raining many days we did not have the opportunity to enjoy our balcony very often. We would probably just save some money and reserve just a veranda cabin or even an river view as the lounge areas are very accommodating to all the passengers. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2018
My husband and I had enjoyed one previous Viking river cruise (Danube Waltz), and we planned and booked this trip nearly 21 months in advance. I have a particular interest in World War II history and have visited Pearl Harbor several ... Read More
My husband and I had enjoyed one previous Viking river cruise (Danube Waltz), and we planned and booked this trip nearly 21 months in advance. I have a particular interest in World War II history and have visited Pearl Harbor several times, so I was very much looking forward to spending time at the Normandy D-Day invasion sites and the American cemetery at Colleville-sur-mer. Our good friends and travel companions, of whom he is a retired U.S. Army brigadier general, had not traveled on Viking before this trip. We were proud to share with them all of the exceptional aspects of quality and attention to detail for which Viking is famous. Our cabin was perfect and always spotless. All of our meals were absolutely delicious, and we appreciated the variety available at each meal. "Blondie," the amazing gentleman who entertained us at the piano, was, by himself, worth going on the cruise. His talent and lovely personality enhanced every evening in the lounge. Nearly every crew member was pleasant and welcoming, and acted as though taking care of the passengers' needs was enjoyable and fulfilling for them personally. I know they all work hard and we tried to be very generous with them at the end of the cruise. Our shore excursions were delightful as well as informative; we particularly enjoyed Montmartre and Lyon. The highlight, of course, was the full day at the D-Day invasion sites. The sites, the commentary from our guide, and my feelings of deep gratitude mixed with sadness, will stay with me forever. Read Less
Sail Date: November 2018
We had a large group of college classmates...average age 67...with their spouses. It was awesome to do the daily excursions together, meat for drinks and dinner and entertainment every night. The Viking Kadlin was so welcoming, clean, ... Read More
We had a large group of college classmates...average age 67...with their spouses. It was awesome to do the daily excursions together, meat for drinks and dinner and entertainment every night. The Viking Kadlin was so welcoming, clean, quiet. Our one-room cabin was roomy with lots of storage (who would have thought it?). The bathroom was spotless with a heated floor. The food was scrumptious and the service crew assiduous and polite...all spoke English very well even though most of them were Eastern European by birth. Each day we had a ship newspaper with the schedule of activities and meals and other events. One day we had a tour of the bridge with Captain (the vessel crew were all French)...the Kadlin is a very modern ship with all the bells and whistles of navigation and power systems to enable the Captain to ensure a smooth and safe trip. The excursion guides were all local experts...we learned so much of about the towns, battlefields and France. The activity director was super...funny, patient, and knowledgable. Wow! We were so impressed that we want to take another Viking Cruise. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: October 2018
This was my 1st Viking cruise but my 9th cruise overall (including 1 prior river cruise). As a retirement present, my wife & I decided to break open the piggy bank for an upscale vacation in France. Viking's commercials are very ... Read More
This was my 1st Viking cruise but my 9th cruise overall (including 1 prior river cruise). As a retirement present, my wife & I decided to break open the piggy bank for an upscale vacation in France. Viking's commercials are very enticing, but the actual experience was somewhat disappointing. Overall, we had a good time in France, but based on previous cruises I expected more. Let's start with some positives: 1. Our program director, Brenten, was excellent. He seemed to be everywhere at once, always smiling, always active. 2. Captain Stuhl was a visible presence on board & open to interacting with guests. 3. The lounge performer, Blondie (not to be confused with Debbie Harry!), was a multi-talented gentleman with a good repertoire. 4. The included tours were good for the most part. Now for the not-so-good aspects of our cruise. The cabin was small, even by cruise ship standards. The bathroom was microscopic, with such a low ceiling that my hand scraped against it every time I brushed my hair. We paid a lot extra for a "deluxe" veranda room which is exactly the same as a regular veranda except for a more central location. On a ship this small that doesn't make a big difference. And we barely used the veranda because the terrace & the sun deck were so easily accessible. One thing that surprised me was the impersonality of the service. On prior cruises I got used to being treated as an individual & greeted by name, with my personal preferences noted & remembered. On Viking this was not true. Service was perfunctory at best, with little effort to personalize it or even act pleasantly toward guests. (I make an exception for 2 servers - Laszlo & Stela - who at least smiled as they worked). It was the same for cabin stewards. On all previous cruises the steward practically became a member of the family. This time there was no effort at personal communication or interaction. Finally, the food. Nothing was awful, but nothing exceeded banquet hall quality. We were asked about allergies on the 1st day but this was never honored. Each day my wife had to struggle to find enough on the menu that wouldn't make her sick. The worst was during our trip to Normandy. We were specifically asked about dietary needs in advance, as they needed to notify the restaurant where we were stopping for lunch. At least 3 crew members verified this information with my wife, yet at the restaurant she was presented with a platter filled with the one vegetable that she said she couldn't eat. In summary, I felt I overpaid for a substandard shipboard experience. Viking should spend less on commercials & mailings, more on training staff about making guests feel like guests. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2018
This was actually our 2nd Viking River Cruise as two years ago, my classmate and I also did the Viking River Cruise to Eastern Europe. Obviously, we enjoyed our pre-cruise stay in Prague and the cruise itself to Budapest, Croatia, Serbia ... Read More
This was actually our 2nd Viking River Cruise as two years ago, my classmate and I also did the Viking River Cruise to Eastern Europe. Obviously, we enjoyed our pre-cruise stay in Prague and the cruise itself to Budapest, Croatia, Serbia and Bucharest. And this October, six of us classmates will be doing the Rhine Ruver Cruise. Needless to say, we are happy and enjoy doing the Viking River Cruises! During our first cruise to Eastern Europe, we didn't have the leisurely walk which we joined during our Paris cruise. We hope you will have the leisurely group again for the Rhine Ruver cruise this October as the six of us classmates are 76 years old by then. In both cruises, we were very pleased with the tour guides. Please note that we have done leisure cruises with Holland America, Princess, Norwegian and Royal Carribean cruise ships since 2010. Viking Cruise is the only River Cruise we have joined and are very happy and satisfied overall. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2018
Viking won our interest with a great itinerary including Paris, Giverny and Rouen along the Seine. After boarding the Viking Kadlin longship and settling in, we visited several of the highlights of Paris on the first day: Notre Dame of ... Read More
Viking won our interest with a great itinerary including Paris, Giverny and Rouen along the Seine. After boarding the Viking Kadlin longship and settling in, we visited several of the highlights of Paris on the first day: Notre Dame of Paris, Champs Elysees, and the Eiffel Tower. We loved the leisurely pace of cruising down the Seine. Our visit to Monet’s home, beautiful gardens and water lily pond was definitely a highlight of the week. The Seine meanders through France toward the English Channel. Charming homes, orchards and farms, and white limestone cliffs line the river’s edge. Not to be missed, our experience at the Normandy beaches and the American cemetery was impressive and moving. Our return trip to Paris included a stop in Les Andelys to visit a castle ruin built in the 12th century by Richard the Lionheart. Versailles and its awe-inspiring, extravagant rooms and gardens left us with a lifetime of memories. We topped off our final night at the Eiffel Tower which glowed in the Paris night. Our meals and entertainment onboard the Kadlin were fabulous! Such a good cruise! Read Less
Sail Date: August 2018
I have always wanted to go to Paris. I searched different options and always went back to the Viking Paris to Normandy trip because we would see so many things in one vacation. I knew that Viking Cruises had a good reputation and decided ... Read More
I have always wanted to go to Paris. I searched different options and always went back to the Viking Paris to Normandy trip because we would see so many things in one vacation. I knew that Viking Cruises had a good reputation and decided to try them. Being new to that area it was attractive go with a trip that did all the planning for us. To insure that I did in fact see Paris, we added a 3 day stay there before our cruise on the Seine River. From the time we arrived at our ship, the Kadlin, until we departed for the airport our trip exceeded all of our expectations. The ship was so well planned. A place for any mood: outdoors for exercise, a little golf, walking or just sunning. A quiet lounge to read, socialize or enjoy the scenery as we glided down the river. Dining choices from formal to casual to al fresco. Every meal offered many choices and because I am gluten free, the maitre'd paid special attention to my every meal! Our cabin was perfect- we had a Veranda B. We found that the rest of the ship was so inviting, we did not need anything bigger. While the main purpose of our trip was the many cities and places that we visited, every evening there was something fun to do back on the ship. Our director was awesome and very entertaining while providing us with daily information about what to expect next. Every single person who worked on the ship was attentive, helpful, at our service! We enjoyed most shore excursions that were included in the ship and also added some optional excursions. Every one of them was well organized and entertaining. What can I say, I cannot think of one negative critique which is unusual for me:) We both loved it so much we have already booked our next trip. This time cruising the Danube River! I think the most important point I can make is that this trip was as carefree as it could be. A true vacation!! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2018
Though there was a good choice of tours, there was too much packed into the day. There was no time to browse. The Normandy day was long and not enough time at the museum if any..which is a shame because it was why we came. There was more ... Read More
Though there was a good choice of tours, there was too much packed into the day. There was no time to browse. The Normandy day was long and not enough time at the museum if any..which is a shame because it was why we came. There was more time at the English Museum. The guide was very hard to understand. The Giverny tour was very good. The tour of Notre Dame was too short with no time to browse and the tour guide spoke to us as if we were children. The Rouen tour was very good and the tour guide was excellent. The food was ok. The staff on board was excellent . The evening entertainment was pleasant. Both embarkation and disembarkation was smooth except at the airport when leaving. We were left at the wheelchair station with no interpreter and nearly missed our flight. It was very stressful. Read Less
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