Sail Date: September 2018
Heard about Viking.....checked out alternatives.....determined that Viking had best to offer for us....of course, it had nothing to do with the fact that we are Norwegian Americans! Our flight got us to Amsterdam quite early.....airport ... Read More
Heard about Viking.....checked out alternatives.....determined that Viking had best to offer for us....of course, it had nothing to do with the fact that we are Norwegian Americans! Our flight got us to Amsterdam quite early.....airport representatives did not have us on any list....nonetheless, the representative that was there had us transported by vehicle to our boat - too early to access room, as departing cruisers had not left yet (for the most part). We had access to the lounge and the dining room for breakfast - got to engage with departing cruisers, and got pointers on highlights of the trip.... We were NOT disappointed, even though we had to switch boats at the 7th or 8th day. The switch was seamless, and almost not noticeable (except for having to pack and unpack midcruise). The staff of the Viking Gefjon was simply superb - most notably Lubo the tour director. His leadership and seeming omnipresence throughout the cruise was noteworthy and greatly facilitated the transition midcruise. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2018
A traveling companion found that Viking was offering a 2 for one deal plus air fare so signed up for it. We sailed from Amsterdam to Budapest with many fun interesting along the way. We were to sail on the Viking Ve but due to river ... Read More
A traveling companion found that Viking was offering a 2 for one deal plus air fare so signed up for it. We sailed from Amsterdam to Budapest with many fun interesting along the way. We were to sail on the Viking Ve but due to river conditions, shallow water, we started on the Viking Gefjon and had to change to the Ve about half way. The crew on both ships made the swap very easy and painless and both crews were very accommodating. This was our first river cruise and first with Viking we found everything on board to be top notch and shore excursions were fun and interesting. Our cruise director, Sam was absolutely fantastic not sure when he slept as he was always seemed to be out and about while we were underway and was always available while coordinating shore excursions. Would we sail with Viking again? Oh Yea! Read Less
Sail Date: June 2018
We really liked the attention to details. Viking seem to anticipate potential glitches and addresses them before you realized them. Even when the ship was delayed in a lock, the shore excursion that was meeting up with the ship down river ... Read More
We really liked the attention to details. Viking seem to anticipate potential glitches and addresses them before you realized them. Even when the ship was delayed in a lock, the shore excursion that was meeting up with the ship down river found that we were delayed and the Program director, not to panic, took the shore group to a pub to wait our arrival -- when the world gives you lemons . . . It was wonderful to experience new places, foods, cultures both on board and on shore excursions. We added a few optional excursions that were of special interest to us however, the included ones were more than exceptional. I would recommend bringing clothes with expandable waistbands as the food is top notch, it was plentiful. If anyone goes hungry, it is their own choice! The food service staff paid attention to every detail -- even noticed that my soft boiled eggs weren't soft and immediately reordered them. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2018
I chose this cruise because it was going to Budapest, which I consider the most beautiful city in the world. Although I had heard that cruise food was wonderful I was unprepared for how delicious it was and how accommodating the staff ... Read More
I chose this cruise because it was going to Budapest, which I consider the most beautiful city in the world. Although I had heard that cruise food was wonderful I was unprepared for how delicious it was and how accommodating the staff were in seeing that we had anything we needed. The service was fabulous and the people were so cheerful and learned our names, cabins and what we liked best to eat. There was entertainment all the time and it was so interesting that I only read 10 pages of the 3 books I had brought with me! I was not prepared to enjoy the other passengers so very much and to spend so much time in conversation. They called my daughter and me the Dynamic Duo and we were very popular. We danced with the bartenders. Our tour guide, Sam, was very thoughtful and helped explain about difficult tours. I had broken my back the month before the ship left and was in some pain. We often took the "easy" tour but didn't feel like we missed anything. For the most part the included shore excursions were just right and very interesting. It was disappointing to have only one day in Budapest but the nighttime cruise was a huge highlight. Although this was expensive, it was worth it. Loved it. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2018
River Cruise VS Ocean Cruise, We are home and this adventure has ended but there is one last thing I want to do. Several have asked which we prefer, an Ocean Cruise or a River Cruise so I have decided to do a comparison. First of all ... Read More
River Cruise VS Ocean Cruise, We are home and this adventure has ended but there is one last thing I want to do. Several have asked which we prefer, an Ocean Cruise or a River Cruise so I have decided to do a comparison. First of all I will compare a Viking River cruise with a Princess Ocean cruise since those are the only ones I have ever done. To make certain I am comparing apples with apples I am comparing a Princess cruise in a B Balcony with a Viking veranda cruise. First of all I went on line and got the cost information for a 7 day Princess and an 8 day Viking. Then I divided accordingly and arrived at the per day cost for each. The Viking Cruise would have cost about $769.00 Canadian dollars per day per person and the Princess cruise would have cost about $279.00 Canadian dollars per day per person. These figures are based on 2 people in each cabin with no sales or promotions.. The adventure begins with a wonderful booklet personalized with all of your information. It includes flight plans and booked excursion and everything you need to know about your cruise. It also contained a lovely leather luggage tag which we will use for years to come. That was a very nice extra special touch. One hundred eighty passengers versus three thousand or more means you see a lot more familiar faces each day, The room on Princess is larger as is the balcony. There is a lot more storage space in a Princess cabin and it is laid out much better. Our Viking room had the desk right next to the patio door so the person working at the desk had to get up if the other wanted access to either the balcony or their bed. The Viking ship has much nicer bathrooms. The shower is almost twice as big and the floor is heated which is an amazing feature. The included toiletries on the Viking ship are of higher quality and they continue to provide individual products. Princess has switched to having the pumps on the shower wall which is not as nice by far. The meals on both ships were wonderful but there were more meal selections with Princess. Princess has specialty dining venues and several other areas where you could dine such as a pizza parlour and a hamburger and hot dog eatery and the 24 hour international Café. A fruit bowl is available with Princess and the only thing available in between meals with Viking is cookies. Room service is not available with Viking and there is 24 hour room service with Princess. There is only one seating for meals with Viking where as Princess has 2 seatings which gives guests a better choice of times. Personally I found that 7:15 or 7:00 was too late. I like to have assigned seating. In that way you get to really make new friends. But if your table mates change every day you never get to really know anyone. The couple who travel alone get left out when it comes to deciding where to sit, assigned dining solves that problem. The dress code for Viking was very casual with no formal nights. Whether or not that is a plus or a minus depends on your personal preference. Personally I like to dress up once in a while. Embarkation and disembarkation is much smoother and much faster with Viking. That is to be expected. Getting 180 people on board has to run smoother that getting 3600 people on board. The same is true of getting them off of the ship. I really appreciated the daily news letter supplied by Viking. Princess has nothing like it and I miss knowing what is happening in Canada and the world while I am travelling. Neither line has TV reception or channel choice that is good. The choices are terrible. I enjoy the production show after dinner. Princess does a superb job of providing entertainment on their cruises. Between big shows and comedians and magicians and musicians they really do provide memorable evenings..Viking had the same 2 people every night in the lounge. There were special guests 2 or 3 times and that is all. There are several lounges and bars on the Princess Ships providing lots of music and entertainment well into the evening. The enrichment lectures on sea days are something I look forward to and this is basically lacking with Viking, partly because there are no sea days, just sailing afternoons or evenings.. There is little or no shopping on a Viking Ship where as there are several shops on the Princess ships. That can be a plus or a minus depending on your point of view. They play BINGO on Princess ships and they have casinos on Princess ships . That also can be a plus or a minus depending on the passenger. The same is true of Art Auctions. The art lecture can be very entertaining however. There are no pools or hot tubs or SPAS on the Viking ships and there are always several on Princess ships. Princess gives everyone a lovely recycle bag with their logo. You do not have to tender with Viking, and you do have to tender sometimes with Princess and that is a major MINUS with Ocean cruises. However docking along side of each other and having to pass through other ships to get to shore in no picnic either. Your balcony is useless if you are butted next to another ship. If you are on the side which is next to the other ship you do not have a view of the city you are in. This is a major minus for Viking River cruises. Viking includes an excursion for each port and that is a big plus. Princess does not offer included shore excursions. You must pay extra for such things.+ For these excursions you are provided with what is called a quiet Voice. It is basically private ear phones. You wear it around your neck and install an ear bud. Even if you are several feet from your guide you can here the commentary. I just loved my quiet voice. Viking supplies a bottle of water to each passenger as they leave the ship to go on an excursion. Plus they put fresh bottles of water in your room each evening. On Princess you must pay for your water if you do not want to refill your bottle. This saves on plastic pollution but it was nice to get a new bottle when you headed out for the day. Princess has the Princess Patter and Viking has the Viking Daily. Both provide the information you need for the next day’s activities. The patter is more extensive but they have a lot more to cover. For me the major item was lack of laundry facilities. Viking has none but Princess has a self serve laundry on every deck. Being able to run an iron over something that may have gotten wrinkled in your suitcase is a big PLUS for me. I think the biggest plus was UNLIMITED free internet. Because I blog it is important to do things quickly to save minutes. But with Viking it did not matter if it too 15 minutes to download one picture. When ever we were dock in city centers the uploading was very fast but speed did not matter as much when it is unlimited. I love the chocolates on my pillow at night and Viking does not provide that. Viking really wears their cruise director our where as Princess has a cruise director’s staff. Because there are fewer passengers, one staff member can be worked where as it would just not be viable with 36 hundred guests With Princess a passenger may bring one bottle of wine to drink in their room. Viking allows you to bring any amount of wine to the table at no corkage fee. If you enjoy wine or beer with your meals at no extra cost then Viking wins the prize. These items are included with the cost of a Viking cruise. So in conclusion which one to take depends on a person’s personal preferences. The river cruises cost a great deal more and that would not be good value for us. We are not drinkers and we would never spent hundreds every day on excursions, water and alcohol. We would choose 2&1/2 ocean cruises over 1 river cruise. BUT we are happy to have sailed with Viking, we had a fabulous time!!! A river cruise is something we can take off of our bucket list. Read Less
Sail Date: May 2018
We loved our veranda cabin. Everything from the heated bathroom floors to the lovely decks was first-class. The crew was outstanding and could not have been friendlier or more committed to making this the best cruise of our lives. The ... Read More
We loved our veranda cabin. Everything from the heated bathroom floors to the lovely decks was first-class. The crew was outstanding and could not have been friendlier or more committed to making this the best cruise of our lives. The dining experience was heavenly - both the regional specialties and the standard menu. Our shore excursions were always well-planned and expertly done. We could not have been happier with our experience. We flew to Amsterdam and participated in the Pre-Cruise package. We loved the city and feel it's wise as some people had plane trouble and were late catching the cruise. The extra few days in Amsterdam gave us some leeway. We've already signed up for Viking's "Paris to Paris" cruise and the "Mediterranean Odyssey". One of the other things we really liked was only having to unpack once. This is one of the main reasons we will continue doing river and ocean cruises. Read Less
Sail Date: May 2018
We had never been on a cruise and were not interested in a crowded cruise ship and thousands of people. The Longship was wonderful. We got to know almost everyone and all the crew during the 2 weeks. There was never a time when we felt ... Read More
We had never been on a cruise and were not interested in a crowded cruise ship and thousands of people. The Longship was wonderful. We got to know almost everyone and all the crew during the 2 weeks. There was never a time when we felt crowded or unable to have our privacy. The open dinner seating allowed us to get to know many people and also have repeated dinners with favorites among the guests. The food was plentiful and consistently good. The staff could not have been friendlier or more accommodating. The tours were interesting and allowed us access to areas and sites that we otherwise would have missed but our favorite times were just wandering the towns and cities and getting to interact with the locals and discover hidden treasures. Our room was a pleasant and comfortable place to rest and recharge but we seldom spent much time in it as there were just too many things to see and do. The travel transfers before and after the cruise were flawless. Read Less
Sail Date: April 2018
Fantastic cruise! Everything was perfect, treated like royalty the entire time. Would change nothing, in fact scheduled another Viking River cruise as soon as we return. All Viking hosts were professional and all crew functions exceeded ... Read More
Fantastic cruise! Everything was perfect, treated like royalty the entire time. Would change nothing, in fact scheduled another Viking River cruise as soon as we return. All Viking hosts were professional and all crew functions exceeded expectations throughout the entire cruise. Food choices, presentation and table service were five star in my book. The homemade cookies available throughout the day were great an I got to really looking forward to them. The cabin and cabin service were exceptional and surpassed any previous cruise we had been on or any hotel we had ever stayed. I could not say enough good things about our cabin steward, just exceptional service. The entire ship crew were willing and ready to answer any questions and explain just what they were doing at any time. Shore excursions were well coordinated and all tours guides were extremely knowledgeable. The command staff and activities crew keep us updated at all times. The bottled water and lemon scented moist towels handed out upon return from shore excursions were an excellent touch. Read Less
Sail Date: December 2017
We wanted to take a river cruise and decided that a Christmas trip to visit the Christmas marts would be nice. While I'm not a cold weather person, I wanted the full European Christmas flavor, so decided that it would be worth it to ... Read More
We wanted to take a river cruise and decided that a Christmas trip to visit the Christmas marts would be nice. While I'm not a cold weather person, I wanted the full European Christmas flavor, so decided that it would be worth it to bundle up on a daily basis. Though I did indeed bundle up, it was well worth it. It snowed in Passau and Linz, giving it wonderful flavor without being unbearable. It was cold outside everyday (was real glad that I did bring all the cold weather clothes - particularly underclothes - that I did), but it was bearable and made the ship that much more comforting. Coming back to hot chocolate and a warm atmosphere was great. The room was always comfortable and sleeping under the down comforters was sublime. That warm European Christmas feeling was wonderful. No malls and shopping centers with people just intent on getting all their shopping done. People were out and enjoying themselves, shopping, but also gathering at the eat/drink spots at all the Christmas marts. Stopping in a Viennese cafe for an incredible pastry was luscious. I did all my Christmas shopping there (leave room in your suitcase if you want to do the same) and was so glad that I did. The staff and all our guides were great. On-board ship, they couldn't do enough for everyone - without being overbearing. Our guides were nice, knowledgeable, and made every excursion special. The food was wonderful and you always had great choices. We sat without different passengers almost every meal, making it possible to meet many people with having the time to sit and enjoy their company. We were actually of just a few on the ship for whom this was a first trip - many had taken at least one other and many had taken many trips. I can fully understand why and we will definitely be taking a cruise again. It's the way to do it when time is a little bit limited but you want to see many places at an enjoyable pace. It's a lot of walking, I'll give you that, but it's up to the individual as to how much they want to do. You never feel pushed to do anything - it's all for your enjoyment. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: November 2017
A river cruise is a relaxed way to see many cities in Europe. Having your hotel move with you is an amazing thing! We did have to change ships mid way through however this was a fairly painless procedure as all we had to do was pack. My ... Read More
A river cruise is a relaxed way to see many cities in Europe. Having your hotel move with you is an amazing thing! We did have to change ships mid way through however this was a fairly painless procedure as all we had to do was pack. My only complaint is that the crew on our first ship was not quite as good as on the Ve, perhaps because we became attached to them quite quickly in our journey. The other complaint is the bed- not comfortable for this level of ship. Loved all the ports. Had great tours/tour guides. The cruise director also let us know about optional tours that included more walking- which we loved! The food was very good. The coffee was so so. I would bring my own small coffee maker next time but I am picky with coffee. Seems that Europeans also do not use cream in their coffee.. I loved being able to sit anywhere to eat. We made some good friends onboard and have planned another Viking trip together for 2019. The absolute best part of Viking is the customer service. Anytime I called I received the best service that I can recall with any company! We used Viking air and were disappointed with a stop in Dulles from Newark (made no sense) and it was changed for us. Next time I would definitely pick my own flights however this was a bit confusing to me having used a different travel agent. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2017
First, I have to preface that I rely on others reviews so I am going to try to be as honest as possible. Embarkation: Very smooth. Met at Amsterdam airport by Viking reps and moved to a bus that took us to our ship. Cabin wasn't ... Read More
First, I have to preface that I rely on others reviews so I am going to try to be as honest as possible. Embarkation: Very smooth. Met at Amsterdam airport by Viking reps and moved to a bus that took us to our ship. Cabin wasn't ready when we arrived (admittedly it was 10 a.m.) but they said to wait in the lounge. We headed to Aquavit for a snack and less than 20 minutes later someone was approaching us with room keys (how did they know who we were?). Dropped off our bags and headed out to tour Amsterdam (Viking offers a brief walking tour but we chose to book a "free" walking tour instead). Ship: Fabulous. Exactly as it looks on Viking's website. We were booked on the Gefjon but because of low water levels it couldn't get through so we were moved at the last minute to the Ve. Sister ships so really no difference in look and style of ship and location of cabins. We couldn't have been happier. Cabin: We were on deck 1 (why spend more $$ when you are only in the room to sleep and shower). It was perfect. Actually a little cave-like and felt snug. Cabin was small but had everything we needed and enough room for clothes, luggage storage, etc. for 15 day cruise. Cabin was clean and no problems or issues. Our room steward, Ioan, was fantastic. Dining: Food was fantastic - main dining room had a meat, seafood and vegetarian option every night along with several appetizers and the main staples of salmon, chicken and steak. Great desserts and free-flowing wine and beer too. Lunch was always a great experience too. Aquavit was a little less formal but not as many options (for dinner, same appetizers at all times and rotating entree as well as salmon, chicken and steak) but very casual and very intimate. Breakfast always had more than you wanted and the eggs were farm fresh (and very tasty). Service: Everyone on the Viking Ve staff were spectacular. Inna the Hotel Manager was sophisticated and very professional at all times. Svenja at the front desk was probably the most friendliest face, always smiling, trying to do her best at anticipating your needs and always there - just a pleasure to speak with and be around. Sam, the program director, was very upbeat and personable (as he should be) and did a terrific job at organizing and making sure everyone was where they needed to be at the right time. Everyone in the dining rooms, bars, room stewards, etc. were always smiling and truly seemed to like what they were doing, no matter how trivial the task. Nuno the chef was always a pleasure to speak with (sorry we didn't get some restaurant recommendations like we said we were going to) and his menus and food (especially soups) were delicious. Some other staff that deserve mention are Edvard, Mirella, Glen and Tamas. Outstanding service overall. Excursions: A guided walking tour was included in each city. No complaints here. All of our guides were informative and knowledgeable. As someone who is used to booking their own tours, etc. and doing all the research, it was a relief to have Viking do it for you. We were able to tour a city with a guide and then walk through on our own taking our time to absorb and get to know the culture. Overall: I would not hesitate to recommend or take another Viking river cruise. While 15 days was long, we wished we had more time to explore. The weather could have been more accommodating (cloudy and rainy a lot of the time), we met some great people and had some spectacular experiences. We loved our Viking cruise. Entertainment: Blah! Disembarkation: This was the only flaw in the entire trip. We had to leave at 3:30 a.m. for a 6:00 a.m flight. When I asked about printing boarding passes I was told "don't worry we handle that for you." They even hold a disembarkation talk several nights prior. However, if you are used to checking in for your flights yourself then I urge you to do so. Viking's "we'll handle that for you" was disastrous. We arrived at the airport and the Viking rep would walk up to you, ask you for your passport, and then walk away with it. Our rep, a female, would then go over to the self check-in kiosk and scan your passport. The problem - someone actually walked away with your passport in a foreign country. I had a problem with that and followed her. I got the passports and boarding passes back but our seats were in row 11 and 28 - we weren't together on our 3 hour flight to Paris from Budapest. We were able to resolve this when we checked our bags but if we had checked-in later we might not have been able to change seats. Also when we checked-in at the Budapest AirFrance counter we were told that we couldn't bring our "carry on" on the plane due to the number of passengers. For us it wasn't an issue because we had a small suitcase and a lock. Our friends however were told the same and had to check a soft sided overnight bag. This was unfair because others were clearly taking their "carry on" plus backpack on the plane. Fortunately all bags made it to our destination but if I had known this in advance I would have checked in on-line (like I always do) 24 hours in advance, gotten our seat assignments (in advance) and everything would have went much more smoothly. Why Viking says that they "hand" you the boarding passes for your flight I will never know (maybe the staff on the ships really don't know the process). In this respect don't trust them but rather check-in yourself. The only stressful part of our Viking vacation was disembarkation especially because they ask that your bags be outside your room and then you "claim" them before boarding the bus for the airport. One of our bags was missing because apparently someone else "claimed" the bag. Viking staff are supposed to check bags and names before loading them on the bus but in our case they did not. My advice is to move your bags yourself if possible. My advice: Spend a few extra days in the beginning and end if you have the opportunity. Make sure you take time to sit outside (even in the cold weather like we had) to enjoy the scenery and the beauty of the rivers. Read Less
Sail Date: October 2017
I worked with a wonderful representative via phone. I explained my daughter had never gone to Europe and I wanted to give her a wonderful experience. Viking delivered. It started with the pre extension in Prague. We were met at the airport ... Read More
I worked with a wonderful representative via phone. I explained my daughter had never gone to Europe and I wanted to give her a wonderful experience. Viking delivered. It started with the pre extension in Prague. We were met at the airport and taken to our hotel where we were met with a very enthusiastic representative who cared for us the 3 days were there. The included tours were excellent. Our transfers to Budapest and the ship were smooth. Our cruise director, captain and officers were kind, informative and ready to share their experiences with us. All of the included tours were outstanding. We did take several optional tours which were just as wonderful. We selected the cabin in the base of the ship and did not regret it at all. We had the last cabin on the lower deck. The room was clean and neat and kept that way by our staff. We never wanted for anything. When they saw we were drinking more water, they included another bottle for us. I had thought we would have more noise but we did not. The only noise we had was during a period when the water level was very low and we were throwing up rocks. That lasted only a short time. Sleep was great. The beds were very comfortable. The cabin was not small at all. Even if it had been we were not in our cabin much. We were either on shore or in the front lounge enjoying the music and small shows provided. I have to say it is hard to say what was the best. Everything was wonderful but the very best part was the dining. The dining aboard was out of this world. The crew remembered our names and our preferences throughout the cruise. My daughter fell in love with all the wonderful soups we had and the French toast breakfast. The food was incredible and abundant. We were never hungry and the selections of wines provided were perfect with each meal. The only down about the entire trip was our transfer in Amsterdam. We were to stay for the extension. We arrived by bus and were met by two young ladies from Viking. They sent us on a walking tour with guides while the rooms were made ready. When we returned they were no were to be found. Check in was a bit confusing. The Viking staff the next day was back in line with what we expected. Very helpful and always available. In the end I received much more that I ever expected and am working on our next adventure. Thank you Viking. Read Less
Sail Date: September 2017
Our choice for this Viking River cruise was based on several factors: 1. an easier / hassle free way to travel through Europe. 2. This Grand European Tour offered so many grand cities to explore, as well as several charming little ... Read More
Our choice for this Viking River cruise was based on several factors: 1. an easier / hassle free way to travel through Europe. 2. This Grand European Tour offered so many grand cities to explore, as well as several charming little villages. 3. All the fabulous amenities of the ship and the services provided excelled beyond expectation. The excursions were wonderful and the guides were some of the best I have encountered in all my travels. Everything about the Viking ship can't be beat, but the best part is the warm, caring staff on board the ship. The crew always seemed to anticipate our needs and delivered without hesitation. There was the potential for logistics problems due to lower water on the Danube River, but Viking handled the adjustments so smoothly we barely even noticed. If you are thinking about taking a river cruise, especially a Grand European Tour, I highly recommend Viking River Cruises. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2017
We had heard wonderful things about Viking and after several ocean cruises with other shipping lines decided it was time to try a river cruise. The ports and shore excursions looked wonderful, and they were. I can't say enough about ... Read More
We had heard wonderful things about Viking and after several ocean cruises with other shipping lines decided it was time to try a river cruise. The ports and shore excursions looked wonderful, and they were. I can't say enough about the service and crew, they were terrific and made our trip extremely enjoyable. The only negative is you really aren't able to use your Veranda when in port because of the way Viking and other boats dock. I mentioned this problem to Viking upon our return and was given a credit. The cabin was functional and kept very clean. The rooms are a little smaller than on an ocean cruise but we were kept so busy we were rarely in our room. There is a great deal of storage space. The bathroom was fine. We enjoyed all the meals on board and took advantage of eating dinner several times up top of the Aquavit Lounge, the food was delicious and the view incredible. Amazing sunsets and had the lounge almost entirely to ourselves. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2017
We are infinitely grateful to the crew of the Viking Ve, and her temporary Program Director Sam Corbin (normally onboard the Viking Gefjon.) I was traveling with my mother, who fell early in our journey and required a trip to the emergency ... Read More
We are infinitely grateful to the crew of the Viking Ve, and her temporary Program Director Sam Corbin (normally onboard the Viking Gefjon.) I was traveling with my mother, who fell early in our journey and required a trip to the emergency room for stitches. Then 6 days later we made another visit to have them removed. Sam was hugely helpful during the crisis moment, as well as later, in assessing how we could help her to participate as much as possible in the rest of the activities, as walking had become an issue for her. She was able to get off the ship and visit many towns along the way, thanks to his ideas. Thomas Leitner, our Hotel Manager, also performed over and above in helping me arrange emergency care for her, even staying with us at the hospital to ensure there were no language/communication issues with the medical staff. I leaned heavily on his help and support that day, and he gave it graciously. I will always be grateful to him. Every crew member that interacted with us contributed to making a very difficult situation bearable and manageable. The entire time they were genuinely concerned and eager to help in any way they could. Their kindness and compassion were amply evident every day we were onboard. How different this situation would have been had we been traveling on our own rather than with Viking. Beyond the unexpected medical adventure, the crew was fabulous in their regular duties as well. Sam manages the coordination of the complex logistics of our tours and other entertainment (among other things) while making it look simple. Even when confronted with plans gone awry (through no fault of his own) he finds solutions with a smile and confidence; never letting on to the passengers how stressful it must be. Like all good performance producers, he makes sure the show goes on and looks perfectly seamless and smooth, hiding any chaos that may exist behind the scenes. As far as we can tell, there's never a problem. He does an outstanding job with grace and humor. Chef Marak, Lukas the maitre'd, and the wait staff (Glen, Angelo, Edwin, and Julius) were also outstanding. I was in need of special diet accommodations, which were tended to with perfect attention to detail. I never once had a problem, and even got to have schnitzel made especially for me and my diet. It was a huge treat, and something I haven't had in 40 years! Thank you! Every interaction with the crew was positive and enjoyable. You have truly selected the best of the best. Thank you for such a wonderful experience. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2017
We wanted to see Central Europe and experience the great cities and countryside along the Danube, Main and Rhine. We were not disappointed. We loved the daily included tours that gave us a wonderful overview of the people and cities. ... Read More
We wanted to see Central Europe and experience the great cities and countryside along the Danube, Main and Rhine. We were not disappointed. We loved the daily included tours that gave us a wonderful overview of the people and cities. Being near the center of the cities when docked also provided an opportunity to explore on foot on our own. My wife was particularly thrilled with the Organ recital in Passau and the Mozart/Schubert concert in Vienna as she is a pianist/organist. Wow!!! The service was great -- and the size of the ship gave the opportunity to really get to know the crew as well. Food and entertainment was super. We started with a pre-trip with Viking in Prague so we got to know about 18 people who went on with us to Budapest, etc. It really enriched the experience and we formed the Praha Group that is still in communication back in the States. My mother's parents both came from the Czech Republic so the pre-trip was especially enriching for me. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2017
Viking River cruises are amazing! We took the Grand European tour from Amsterdam to Budapest! We also added on the 3 day post tour to Prague. The ship was very well maintained. We enjoyed most of the dining experiences, my hubby ... Read More
Viking River cruises are amazing! We took the Grand European tour from Amsterdam to Budapest! We also added on the 3 day post tour to Prague. The ship was very well maintained. We enjoyed most of the dining experiences, my hubby thought the meals were a little too gourmet for his tastes. He is pretty much a meat and potatoes fan. He did however, enjoy the cookies every afternoon at the coffee and tea station! The entertainment was nice, we especially liked the trivia game nights. The service was excellent, the waiters, bar staff and house maids were great and very personable. Our cruise director David was the best!!! Very attentive to all our needs. We did all the included shore excursion, lots of walking. Very informative also. Viking certainly exceeded all of our expectations! Thank you Viking Cruise Line for the fantastic Grand European Cruise! One of my favorite parts of the Cruise was the evening Cruise In Budapest, totally Awesome!! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2017
A river cruise through Europe has been near the top of our wish list for many years ... and our 15 days on the Grand European Tour was everything we had hoped for. Our program director on Viking Ve, Marik, was brilliant - funny, ... Read More
A river cruise through Europe has been near the top of our wish list for many years ... and our 15 days on the Grand European Tour was everything we had hoped for. Our program director on Viking Ve, Marik, was brilliant - funny, knowledgeable, caring. His enthusiasm and engagement made the onboard experience special, and his one-man-show as Mozart was amazing. The ship's layout and appointments were excellent, and the staff was delightful. It was so nice to be greeted with a smile and a hello throughout the day and by every member of ship's company we encountered. The food was quite good, the bar well stocked. Shore excursions were informative, if occasionally too brief. The only challenges we encountered were created by Mother Nature: very hot weather, and low water between Nuremburg and the Danube. Viking had the perfect solution to the latter problem: we transferred to Viking Gefjon - a minor inconvenience, but far better than abandoning the cruise. We missed almost nothing, the ships are identical, and we got to meet and be pampered by a new cast (fortunately, our program director transferred to Gefjon with us). Overall, the Grand European Tour on Viking Ve was an unforgettable experience of a lifetime. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2017
We chose this cruise because of the itinerary. We had hoped to see the Rhine-Meine Canal as we transited it but due to the low water we were unable to transit that section. The ship change was handled very smoothly by the staff and crew. ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the itinerary. We had hoped to see the Rhine-Meine Canal as we transited it but due to the low water we were unable to transit that section. The ship change was handled very smoothly by the staff and crew. We attended at least one excursion at each port so we had a good overview of the entire area, the excursions were well run. Occasionally we got a guide that was a bit hard to understand but for the most part that wasn't a problem. The process of getting people off the ship and to the designated locations for their excursions was handled in a very smooth fashion. The seemingly impromptu evening cruise of the lights of Budapest the last evening was one of the highlights! We truly enjoyed the time cruising through the scenic countryside and would have enjoyed a little more of that. Our cabin was spacious, comfortable and well appointed and the Service was impeccable. We enjoyed the flexibility of open seating and the opportunity to get to know many of the other passengers by sharing a table with different people throughout much of the cruise. It was a fabulous experience and we will definitely take another Viking Cruise. Read Less
Sail Date: May 2017
We were interested in the history of Europe and wanted to see the Medevial history and buildings. We also wanted to see what the countryside was like. The trip was wonderful and the crew were exceptional. The ship was great, the meals were ... Read More
We were interested in the history of Europe and wanted to see the Medevial history and buildings. We also wanted to see what the countryside was like. The trip was wonderful and the crew were exceptional. The ship was great, the meals were excellent, the rooms were comfortable and the crew went above and beyond to make the trip as enjoyable as possible. They took care of you from when you arrived at the airport until you were ready to board your flight home. The activities on board were good and the shore excursions were very interesting. The Program Director was excellent and was very entertaining. He would try to make everything on the trip very enjoyable. The Captain and his crew were very professional and were very interesting to talk to. The Hotel staff were exceptional and catered to all your needs. The Restaurant crew were very efficient and entertaining, the food was excellent and very varied. The Reception Desk were very helpful and ran their activities very efficiently. Overall the whole crew could not have been better I would take another trip with Viking Cruises any time. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: May 2017
This cruise introduced us to the history and culture of many European countries and ports of call. We stayed in Prague for 3 days for a pre-excursion trip were so glad we did. It was a wonderful city to visit. All of the shore excursions ... Read More
This cruise introduced us to the history and culture of many European countries and ports of call. We stayed in Prague for 3 days for a pre-excursion trip were so glad we did. It was a wonderful city to visit. All of the shore excursions were excellent and we got to enjoy a wonderful concert in Vienna by the Vienna Resident Orchestra. On other excursions we visited abbeys, castles, cathedrals, historic cities and venues and loved every minute of each excursion. The Viking tour guides were excellent. The Cruise Director, the Hotel Manager and the Captain were always available and extremely knowledgeable. The food on board the ship was outstanding with a wide variety of choices and able to satisfy and pallet. The restaurant service was always exemplary as was the cabin service. The really great think about Viking is that virtually everything is included (except for gratuity) in the cost. My best way to explain how I feel about Viking Cruises is that we plan on another Viking cruise in the future. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2017
We are first time Viking river cruisers and everything about the cruise exceeded our expectations. The smaller size of the river boat gives travelers the opportunity to meet people and make new friends. The included excursions were well ... Read More
We are first time Viking river cruisers and everything about the cruise exceeded our expectations. The smaller size of the river boat gives travelers the opportunity to meet people and make new friends. The included excursions were well organized, informative, and fun. My only complaint was that some ports had little time for shopping. The dining room was nicely decorated and the food was delicious. We had the choice of a full service meal or a smaller venue for a lighter meal. The cabins were on the small side, but very clean and nicely appointed. The room stewards were friendly and eager to make sure all of our needs were met. Our cruise director and his staff were friendly and knowledgable, making sure we knew exactly what to expect at each port and on the ship. I would definitely do another river cruise, but I have my eye on a Viking Ocean Cruise to do next. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2016
As a veteran of 40 ocean cruises, I was not prepared for the staff, service and generally fabulous trip we had. We thought we would be bored in the evenings, but there was plenty of entertainment and things to do. Between eating, and ... Read More
As a veteran of 40 ocean cruises, I was not prepared for the staff, service and generally fabulous trip we had. We thought we would be bored in the evenings, but there was plenty of entertainment and things to do. Between eating, and more eating - everything was delicious!, the walking (thank goodness we burned some of the calories) and entertainment, we didn't even look at the books we brought "to kill time" in the evenings. We were met in Munich and escorted to Passau by bus. Our Viking representative told us that one of the planes that would join our bus was a little late and we would have time to visit the Christmas market just outside the doors of the terminal; so we started off with fun instead of just waiting. The included daily tours had a Quiet Vox system where we each wore a receiver so everyone could hear the guide, not just the first two rows crowded around. Also, when one of our members got lost, he could hear that we were waiting for him and where to meet us - he was located in no time. The groups were small and each guide was knowledgeable. Kane was our Cruise Director and I have never had so much fun! He was so energetic! We had local talent, speakers, sing alongs, and just a wonderful time. If you have ever tried to find a seat to eat while your breakfast is getting cold, you will appreciate as much as we did the fact that there were plenty of seats for eating and people were generally a lot more friendly. The lounge, also, had plenty of seating for all. The ship was just more intimate (177 guests instead of 2500). The only bad part is that the Danube River is in Europe and a LONG flight to and from California. Maybe that's good - I'd go once a month if it wasn't so far. The staff gets "eleven out of ten" stars for service, attitude and general above and beyond service. They even managed to repair my boots! Another example of above and beyond -- we were delayed three hours because of a mechanical failure of one of the locks we had to go thru making our "grand entrance" to Budapest at 1 am - so the Captain arranged with the Harbor Master to leave the dock, go back upstream and re-enter the lights of Budapest at a decent hour the next evening. Read Less
Sail Date: December 2016
We chose the Danube cruise because we wanted to see the Christmas markets. Everything about the cruise was better than we expected. Viking has a good attention to the little details that can make or break a cruise. They included shore ... Read More
We chose the Danube cruise because we wanted to see the Christmas markets. Everything about the cruise was better than we expected. Viking has a good attention to the little details that can make or break a cruise. They included shore excursions on their own buses and all the guides were excellent. The food was great. They even escorted us to the airport in Budapest for the trip home and made sure we were on the correct line. The ship was excellent too. I can't think of anything to complain about and we've been on 33 ocean cruises before. The ports were well chosen and the shore extensions were well run. Service was better than average. Would we go again? Of course. River cruising turned out to be much better than we expected. It's different from ocean cruising with thousands of people and Las Vegas style entertainment but we didn't miss any of it. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: December 2016
We have cruised the Rhine earlier with Viking and were quite pleased by the tours and also the ability to get on and off the ship without taking forever and being run through security constantly, like the large cruise ships. Pulling into ... Read More
We have cruised the Rhine earlier with Viking and were quite pleased by the tours and also the ability to get on and off the ship without taking forever and being run through security constantly, like the large cruise ships. Pulling into small towns and villages and walking a path to the old section is just our style. Yes, there are some coach tours and they are well worth it. On the Rhine, the tour to Colmar cannot be missed, and is close. On the Danube tour, they changed the coach tour from Salzburg (one of our favorite small cities in Europe) to Chesky Krumlov (which we fell totally in love with). It is a long drive from Linz but a beautiful drive through the countryside, and one of the best days of our Danube tour. Starting in Budapest gave us a chance to explore the city by arriving a few days earlier and enjoying the families and restaurants during the Christmas season. Extending a few days in Prague was the same experience, where you have the time to just stroll and get the real feel of a place. Ending the tour in central Europe gives you a further chance to extend somewhere else as well, for an inexpensive plane ride. For us, it was Rome for another 6 days. The portages on the Danube Cruise, including Budapest, Vienna (climbed St. Stephens tower for the view and to burn off calories), and the incomparable towns of Melk and Durnstein are the true Europe still left. We also loved visiting Bratislava, with very eclectic art and a truly friendly people, and of course Passau was marvelous. Having the chance to climb up to forts and castles as we went, because we didn't need to run or miss the ship, made it all the more wonderful for us. We are active and like to add climbing up church towers or hills for views (or a beer) to our daily activity. My only concern, and I've shared it with Viking, was in Vienna, which of course is a large city. After the daily tour they had the option of a night tour to the Opera House which many people took. The coaches picked them up from the ship which was docked quite a way away from anything else. For the many of us who just wanted to go back to town, check out the Christmas lights at night, hear some Jazz, they had no shuttles. The walk from the ship to the metro was quite long and it was dark and at this time of year, chilly. We had no problems, but for many this made it impossible to leave the ship at all, or an expensive cab ride both ways. Suggest they have optional shuttles to at least take passengers to the metro terminal, quite a ways a way, or better yet at a drop off point near the center. And back. It would make Vienna much more accessible for everyone, and what a fantastic city it is. The Ve is one of the newer Viking ships and we had a French Balcony room which is our favorite. We don't usually book balconies as we don't use them, but the French balcony gives you a wall of views and the ability to open one half of it and enjoy the fresh Danube air (and ice, as was the case in December, but we loved it). The cabins are nicely appointed, the bathrooms quite roomy compared to the older ships, and the crew was marvelous as always. They cleaned the room at least twice a day, I think our cabin steward spent more time in my room then I did, but I missed him when we left. The Oktoberfest themed dinner was one of the best I have ever seen in all my years of cruising, the food amazing and beautifully presented, and a terrific oompah band went table to table. Each evening there was a piano player and a themed game or contest. Best bartenders in the business on these ships, and a very nice liquor selection as well. All in all, this cruise totally outdid itself!! We will be back, and will try a Viking Ocean voyage next. Read Less
Viking Ve Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 4.0 0.0
Dining 4.0 0.0
Entertainment 3.0 0.0
Public Rooms 4.0 0.0
Fitness Recreation 1.0 0.0
Family 1.0 0.0
Shore Excursion 5.0 0.0
Enrichment 4.0 0.0
Service 5.0 0.0
Value For Money 4.0 0.0

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