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4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2017
We have not done cruised this river before. It is not offered that often and we just wanted to see some of the cities and sites on the itinerary. We had a hotel included for the night before we boarded the ship, the Queen of the ... Read More
We have not done cruised this river before. It is not offered that often and we just wanted to see some of the cities and sites on the itinerary. We had a hotel included for the night before we boarded the ship, the Queen of the Mississippi Paddle-Wheeler, in St. Louis and traveled to Pittsburgh. The embarkation was handled smoothly and so was the disembarking. If you have never gone through the locks on a large river, it is an interesting experience. We toured the Trail of Tears Museum in Cape Giradeau, MO. Very well done. The highlight for us was to tour Churchill Downs in Louisville, KY. There were 2 tours offered in Cincinnati and both were interesting. The service on the ship was excellent. Food is very good and one has the option to choose 1/2 portion of each meal. Be warned,,,desserts are outstanding! Each of the lounges has coffee, tea, juices, sodas, water and snacks available at all times. Read Less
28 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2017
Originally purchased this package through Luxury Escapes. Had previously never heard of Gate1, but wanted to do a European river cruise without the 5 star price tag. Booked our transfers from Budapest airport to the ship through Gate1 ... Read More
Originally purchased this package through Luxury Escapes. Had previously never heard of Gate1, but wanted to do a European river cruise without the 5 star price tag. Booked our transfers from Budapest airport to the ship through Gate1 and from then on for the next two weeks had to think about nothing but enjoying the cruise. Gate 1 had covered all aspects of the holiday, with excellent local guides at each port, fun friendly staff on board, and a very comfortable ship to relax and enjoy. We had initially booked a C class cabin, on the middle deck, but Gate1 had upgraded us to a B Class cabin on the upper deck. The cabin had a French balcony, it's own air conditioning, and was very comfortable. Breakfast was a buffet style arrangement with option to order if preferred. Lunch was a similar arrangement where you could order a main from three options or self serve from the buffet. Lunch included soup and desert each day. Dinner was a four or five course affair each night. Seating for meals was arranged to encourage passenger interaction and as such we met many people from the USA and Australia. The service was excellent with friendly waiters always available. Beer and wine was free during dinner service, so many a two hour meal was to be had. On ship entertainment was light hearted and fun, with trivia and general knowledge quiz's the order of the day. We would definitely recommend Gate1 and river cruising to anyone looking for a relaxed, friendly, memorable holiday. Read Less
27 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2017
This is our first river cruise after about 15 ocean cruises and it is an experience we are definitely repeating. We booked with Gate1 Australia and the service has been great from start to finish. The ship takes about 155 passengers, ... Read More
This is our first river cruise after about 15 ocean cruises and it is an experience we are definitely repeating. We booked with Gate1 Australia and the service has been great from start to finish. The ship takes about 155 passengers, there was only 112 on our cruise with 52 Aussies, and do we know how to party. The ship, although not new, has been continuously refurbished so it feels really fresh. We had cabin 225 with a French balcony, although not hugh, was very comfortable, the bathroom is more spacious and usable than many ocean cruises that I've been on. The food was consistently delicious, thank you Chef Dirk.. Wine and beer are served with dinner each night, so we have the pleasure of sampling some very fine regional wine. The crew also helped to make it a more memorable experience, nothing is too much trouble. Special mention to Receptionist Genona, we went on board the day before our embarkment to make sure of the location, she spoke to us briefly giving us the info we wanted. Imagine our surprise when we embarked the next day that she remembered our names and cabin number and took care of our baggages for us. The included excursions were all well orgainsed with excellent tour guides that are all extremely professional and knowledgeable, although it did become a bit of ABC (another bloody castle/cathedral) in the end, they all did an excellent job looking after us. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2017
We wanted to see Europe as "hassle-free" as possible. This is a great way to do it. We did the pre-cruise package in Amsterdam and the post-cruise package in Lucerne. We booked our flights through Viking as well. Viking ... Read More
We wanted to see Europe as "hassle-free" as possible. This is a great way to do it. We did the pre-cruise package in Amsterdam and the post-cruise package in Lucerne. We booked our flights through Viking as well. Viking arranged all the transfers. Viking were great hosts, they took care of everything. No worries! What more could you ask for? We saw some great parts of Europe. While doing the cruise part of the adventure, you have the luxury of taking a floating hotel room and a restaurant with you. No packing & unpacking for a week! We dressed casual. There were no "formal nights" and we enjoyed the fact there were less than 200 paying passengers. The service could not have been better. The ship was clean and the cabin was the right size. Ships crew were warm and welcoming. There were free excursions every day. (walking tours) The food was excellent and the wait staff was very attentive. I highly recommend going to Lucurne. The hotel Viking uses is very close to "Old Town" which is the center of action. This was the very best vacation my wife and I have ever had. We plan doing it again in 2019 on the Danube. Read Less
Sail Date: June 2017
First cruise and first time in France - LOVED this trip!!!! It was amazing and everything was fantastic - the ship/cabin was comfortable; the food was extremely good and I didn't even gain weight with all the food that was provided - ... Read More
First cruise and first time in France - LOVED this trip!!!! It was amazing and everything was fantastic - the ship/cabin was comfortable; the food was extremely good and I didn't even gain weight with all the food that was provided - loved all the excursions as they were a great way to get to know the area and cannot wait to go back and further explore Northern France. The staff was great about answering questions, and making the trip such a fabulous memory. I would strongly recommend Viking especially if you want to experience from a high level and travel abroad feeling safe. Everything was comfortable and enjoyable. It was truly a trip of a lifetime and cannot thank the Viking crew for all they did to make such a memorable excursion. I would definitely do this form of travel again as it was a perfect way to see and experience so many things about the country we were in - from history to present. Unforgettable!!!! Read Less
Sail Date: June 2017
Viking provided outstanding customer service from the time we were met at the airport in Amsterdam to the time we checked in at the airport for departure in Prague. The ship was the latest in convenience. The cabin was a nice size, ... Read More
Viking provided outstanding customer service from the time we were met at the airport in Amsterdam to the time we checked in at the airport for departure in Prague. The ship was the latest in convenience. The cabin was a nice size, meticulously clean and modern. Dining was excellent with great attention to service. We had the very best Program Director. In all of our ocean cruises he was the very best! He was there for our every need and questions! Even making umbrellas available one morning when leaving for the day and it was raining a little. On our excursions he would appear out of nowhere to ensure that our needs were met. The evening performance were excellent for the size of our ship. He left no stone unturned! I would not hesitate getting on another cruise if I knew he was the program director. The ports and the shore excursions were top notch. The tour guides were knowledgeable, pleasant and again great attention to detail and customer service. We are certainly planning on taking another cruise with Viking! Well, well worth the money. We have been telling our friends and families to look no further than Viking! Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2017
We’ve been on two previous Viking River cruises and this was the first Viking Ocean cruise – we have trusted and been happy with all aspects of Viking – we wanted to cruise the Baltics and our favorite stops were Tallin, Estonia – ... Read More
We’ve been on two previous Viking River cruises and this was the first Viking Ocean cruise – we have trusted and been happy with all aspects of Viking – we wanted to cruise the Baltics and our favorite stops were Tallin, Estonia – Gdansk, Poland – Aalborg, Denmark and all of Norway - all ports were easy to navigate on to shore (no tethering) most by bus but several were walk right off into the community like Aalborg, Denmark and Eidfjorde, Norway - after several free excursions by bus and the general 2-3 hour tour we started to appreciate some of the paid excursions that had around 20-30 people - more personable and enjoyable - we weren’t impressed with larger cities like St. Petersburg as tours to landmarks and museums were rushed and crowded - we are on vacation and do enjoy relaxation and that's what the ship offers in all areas - it's OK to skip a port and just relax on board as there is so much to do - the spa and fitness area offered programs and the top deck had the best fitness equipment and activities like shuffleboard - movie theatres provided themed movies in connection to the areas we cruised - on board musical entertainment was fun and vibrant from lounge shows to pool parties and the dining offerings ranged from great lasgna and an Italian menu at Manfredi’s to a wonderful wine and food pairing at the Chef’s Table – the Restaurant offered a wide range of choices from fish to steak and local favorites – the World Café offered a smorgasbord of main entrees – desserts and snacks – Mamsen’s served a wonderful daily breakfast with fresh pastries and fruit plus waffles and breakfast platters made to order - the lounge choices were fun – warm and friendly – relaxing views of the sea and countryside from the Explorer’s Lounge listening to a guitarist or pianist - to night time entertainment at Torshavn with shows like The Rat Pack – the Viking Bar and Living Room was a great place to hear music from highly skilled musicians and entertainers – we will be cruising another itinerary with Viking Ocean in the future and we highly recommend connecting with Cruise Critic through their Meet & Mingle on board – we have many friends just from that connection – we like the smaller ship with 930 cruisers and no casinos or themed gimmicks – this allowed us to meet so many great people - fun ship and wonderful staff !!! Read Less
25 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2017
I have always wanted to do a European River Cruise and this cruise came up on some spam e-mail and the price was so good we booked it but were sceptical as we had never heard of Gate 1. They are new to Australia but have many fans in the ... Read More
I have always wanted to do a European River Cruise and this cruise came up on some spam e-mail and the price was so good we booked it but were sceptical as we had never heard of Gate 1. They are new to Australia but have many fans in the US. We were pleasantly surprised that we were taken care of from the moment of arrival at Prague and was so well organised. Part of the package was 3 nights in Prague and then we were picked up to go the ship port at Regensburg. Embarkation was so quick and easy and as we have only ever done ocean cruising previously where you have to wait for hours to embark and disembark because of the volume of passengers, only having around 140 passengers meant it so was much more personal. The ship is nice and the cabin was nice with a french balcony. To be honest that's all you need as you don't have 'sea days' and really don't have time to spend on the balcony as every day there is exciting things to do. The shower was a little awkward being triangular. The food was lovely and the wait staff Goran and Palmene were great so we tried to get their section when we could. Gate 1 really knew that best things to do and had good guides in each port and we were pleasantly surprised at the included tours and we did the optional excursions of Schonbrunn Palace and the dinner in the woods with folkloric band and dancers both of which were great. The other passengers were mainly from the US but this cruise also had a group from Israel and there was another couple of Aussies on board. Everyone was really fun and we enjoyed sitting with new people for each meal. I would definitely travel Gate 1 again. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2017
We chose this particular cruise because we had seen the Rhine from Amsterdam to Mainz and we wanted to go further east. The river cruise offered by SCENIC fit out timetable and from Budapest back to Nuremberg fit with our desired ... Read More
We chose this particular cruise because we had seen the Rhine from Amsterdam to Mainz and we wanted to go further east. The river cruise offered by SCENIC fit out timetable and from Budapest back to Nuremberg fit with our desired geography. We priced various cruise lines and while SCENIC was not the least expensive, the 100% all inclusive and the description of the off ship excursions and on ship amenities just made the idea sound more convenient and fun. Boy, were we correct! Never have we felt more pampered. The staff, like the cruise director Andrian ( who could also have a second career in stand up comedy ) Kristian ( in the bar and the dining room ) ... well... actually, all the staff, were attentive, fast efficient and genuinely appeared to love their jobs. They made us feel so welcome and important. You can, other than the odd coin you may need for WCs when off ship, lock your purse or wallet away. Everything is top notch, top quality and included. Even the bus service used for off ship excursions was top notch and the local guides were fantastic. We began in Budapest, wandered down the Danube past Vienna and ended in Nuremberg where so continued to Prague and some ( including us ) sadly flew home. We were offered a plethora of choices for off ship excursions and I would have to write a short novel to outline them all. Check with Scenic for their itinerary. Every choice was great and, there were sufficient options that you could actually do the trip more than once. It is not often that I can find no fault whatsoever. This time I can. I highly recommend you take SCENIC cruise lines into consideration for your trip. ( And no, I don't work for them or have shares. ) We were extremely impressed. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2017
Dear community, we really had a fantastic cruise lately on Viking Osfrid. It is our 3rd Viking Cruise already and this time we decided to see Portugal, started in Lisbon and finished in Madrid. The Lisbon part was Hotel and Bus only ... Read More
Dear community, we really had a fantastic cruise lately on Viking Osfrid. It is our 3rd Viking Cruise already and this time we decided to see Portugal, started in Lisbon and finished in Madrid. The Lisbon part was Hotel and Bus only and ok, its rather a city trip but once you board the ship in Porto the feeling changes. Porto what a great city to explore and if you love wine and port than this is a must cruise. Don’t expect too much of an entertainment on those small ships but look forward to the tours. The landscape you see from the ship is not comparable with any other cruise and the fact that there is a lot of daytime sailing makes it even better. Our Cabin had a balcony which is a must I would say, keep in mind its quiet hot in the valley and rather colder in Porto. Food was exceptional compared to previous cruises and always with a local touch. Crew went out of their way to serve us and did a great job. They seem to be less personal than on other viking ships but really surprised us with their smile and service. Generally we felt this was the best viking cruise so far after we did the Rhine and China before. Thanks to the Osfrid team, job well done – we are coming back…. The Fellons Read Less
10 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2017
This is our 5th river cruise and Uniworld by far exceeded all expectations. All inclusive gratuities, drinks, choice of daily excursions were all contributing factors for choosing Uniworld. With many other cruise lines you are constantly ... Read More
This is our 5th river cruise and Uniworld by far exceeded all expectations. All inclusive gratuities, drinks, choice of daily excursions were all contributing factors for choosing Uniworld. With many other cruise lines you are constantly being nickled and dimed with every step. Not so with Uniworld. Their local guides were extremley knowledgeable,friendly and made the daily excursions so much more interesting. Chiara in Milan just made our day with her upbeat personality. Susan, on our Venice excursions was extremely knowledgeable and her detailed descriptions of the Venetian artwork and landmarks were the best we have ever encountered. The staff on the ship were all personable and did everything they could to meet the customer expectations. The evening meals were first class and a large variety of options for lunch, including a pizza bar in the top deck lounge. We are seriously considering doing this trip again in the near future. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: June 2017
We wanted a special adventure for our 50th Anniversary. We thoroughly enjoyed the fact that everything was provided, all the details were pre-arranged and we were able to relax and enjoy. The on-shore tours and local guides were ... Read More
We wanted a special adventure for our 50th Anniversary. We thoroughly enjoyed the fact that everything was provided, all the details were pre-arranged and we were able to relax and enjoy. The on-shore tours and local guides were excellent, on-board experience was wonderful, and the cities we visited were great. The pre-trip in Prague was a wonderful introduction for our trip. We enjoyed the walking opportunities in each location and participated in each of the provided on-shore tours. We also enjoyed several of the optional excursions as well as the opportunities to have some free time to explore on our own. The history, foods, culture, architecture and people were all very great experiences. The staff on-board went above and beyond to provide for us and were present when needed, but also unobtrusive and efficient. This has provided great value for the cost of our cruise. We highly recommend this cruise and would love to have another opportunity some day. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2017
We chose this cruise line because of the itinerary, but also because everything was included in the price. We departed from Amsterdam and disembarked in Nuremberg. Ship is very modern and clean, sleek. Crew was fantastic and one ... Read More
We chose this cruise line because of the itinerary, but also because everything was included in the price. We departed from Amsterdam and disembarked in Nuremberg. Ship is very modern and clean, sleek. Crew was fantastic and one of the highlights of the week! Such fun young people! I felt our room was roomy and loved the drop down picture window! Brought so much fresh air into the room! Food was good (not great). Wine and beer included with lunch & dinner was a very nice touch and wine was delicious! Cruise included tours in each port, normally walking tours. This was nice, but you can only get around as fast as your slowest walker! this we found to be an issue! By end of week they were designating "slower" walking groups, which helped ! I think they should have done that from the start. Group for the older or impaired walkers at every port. Could have used more entertainment in the evenings. The disco night and Name that Tune game was fun...but should have had something every night. Not expecting "shows" like large cruise lines, but a bit of entertainment each night would have been better. Negative: I'm assuming because of high water levels they had to close the upper deck about day 2 for the balance of the cruise. This was very disappointing and I think Emerald ought to warn of this possibility in their write ups a bit more. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2017
Friends who made a couple of Viking River Cruises highly recommended us to cruise on the Viking cruise line. We had made several (7) Ocean Cruises on Royal Caribbean with them and they wanted us to enjoy this new and intimate experience ... Read More
Friends who made a couple of Viking River Cruises highly recommended us to cruise on the Viking cruise line. We had made several (7) Ocean Cruises on Royal Caribbean with them and they wanted us to enjoy this new and intimate experience on a smaller vessel. Most of our cruises on RCI were 3500 and above passengers where this one was only 190! The cruise itinerary for us was perfect for although we have traveled extensively throughout Europe we had never been to Budapest nor Prague. Learned a lot about why communism and those behind the Iron Curtain during the Cold War were so affected by not being able to live freely. The Viking was very clean and support staff were very professional seeing to our every need. It was service with pleasure from embarkation to disembarkation. Our Crew was excellent and we had a great Tour Director (Edina) and Hospitality Director (Mariana). Superior experience and great trip down the Danube! Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2017
We wanted to visit Budapest, Vienna and Prague, and our cruise itinerary gave us the perfect chance to do so. We spent three days before the cruise exploring Budapest, and three days after the cruise exploring Prague. The Austrian and ... Read More
We wanted to visit Budapest, Vienna and Prague, and our cruise itinerary gave us the perfect chance to do so. We spent three days before the cruise exploring Budapest, and three days after the cruise exploring Prague. The Austrian and German towns we stopped at along the way exceeded expectations, as did our time aboard the Egil. Shore excursion guides ranged from average to excellent. Our one day on the river traveling down the Wachau valley was gorgeous and relaxing. A positive aspect of river cruising is having your "hotel" travel with you, obviating the necessity of packing, checking in and unpacking at each new city. On the other hand, the requirement to return to the ship by dinnertime most days precluded experiencing city nightlife. Breakfasts and dinners on board were well-prepared and well-served, but unfortunately room service was not available. Nightly ship-wide meetings consisted of informative presentations of then next-day's ports and schedules, as well as various musical performances. Bar service during and afterwards was fast and unlimited. Last but not least, the staff were friendly, knowledgeable, helpful and all around amazing. They worked very hard to make sure our stay went smoothly, and all our needs were met, both on and off the ship. This was our first river cruise and we definitely will be back for more! Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2017
We had been considering 15 day The Grand European Tour Viking River Cruise for a long time, and we finally decided to indulge ourselves. We were on the May 26 - June 9, 2017, cruise. This was an outstanding experience, and one that far ... Read More
We had been considering 15 day The Grand European Tour Viking River Cruise for a long time, and we finally decided to indulge ourselves. We were on the May 26 - June 9, 2017, cruise. This was an outstanding experience, and one that far exceeded our expectations in almost every way! First, we opted for Viking to make our travel arrangements, which included our transfers between airport and ship. Not only did they welcome us in the arrivals hall in Schiphol Airport (Amsterdam) at the beginning of our journey, they also had a representative stay with us all the way until we arrived at the security checkpoint when we departed from the Budapest airport. We opted for the Veranda Stateroom (upper deck) because we wanted a little more room (205 sq. feet plus balcony) versus the French Balcony Stateroom (135 sq. feet). We are very happy with our decision. Although we really did not use the balcony very much, we very much appreciated the extra space! Rey, our cabin attendant was superb! We don't know how he always seemed to know the moment when we left our cabin, and when we came back from breakfast, he had already been in to clean the room. He frequently asked if there was anything else we needed or wanted, and reminded us that he was there to do whatever he could to make our vacation enjoyable. That attitude was prevalent among ALL the staff! Every staff member consistently provided exceptional service, and made us feel so welcomed and valued as customers. The front desk staff was always friendly, efficient, and very helpful. The maitre d' Ksenjia always handed each of us a bottle of water to take along as we left the ship each day for our excursions, and she then offered us a warm welcome and a smile when we returned. She made sure the food service operation went smoothly, which it did! Our waitstaff Mae, Barbara, Dessi, and Michael were all fantastic, as were the bartenders in the lounge: Tamas and Christian! Chef (Gabor) was a master at his profession, provided a varied menu of expertly prepared meals, including a number of regional specialties. It was a real treat to be able to visit the galley after dinner one night and hear the chef explain the culinary operation of the ship. Each day during lunch time and again after dinner, we enjoyed going to the lounge and listening to musicians George and Magdalena. Program Director Barry did a great job of managing all the onboard activities, as well as the daily excursions. The ship was absolutely beautiful, was spotlessly clean, and was well-maintained. We went on all of the included excursions. It is difficult to say which was best, because they were all excellent. If I had to choose, I would say that the tour of Marksburg Castle in Braubach, Germany, and the visit to the windmills at Kinderdijk were personal favorites. The guides were all friendly and knowledgeable. The only thing lacking, in my opinion, was some sort of fitness room. It would have to be very small, but even a room with a couple of stationary bikes or treadmills would have been appreciated. The sundeck does have a walking track, but the sundeck was closed for five days because of the need to be able to lower the railings and equipment on that deck so that we could pass under some of the many bridges on the rivers. A small fitness room would be a welcome addition, especially for those times when the walking track is not available. I could go on and on. Suffice it to say that, based on this very positive experience, we hope to take more cruises on Viking in the future. Our next adventure may be on one of their ocean cruises! Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2017
We wanted to see this part of France which was new to us. Having to fly from Edinburgh to Amsterdam and then on to Marseille wasn't the best way to start a holiday especially as the 'special assistance' for my wife in ... Read More
We wanted to see this part of France which was new to us. Having to fly from Edinburgh to Amsterdam and then on to Marseille wasn't the best way to start a holiday especially as the 'special assistance' for my wife in Marseille wasn't the best with a miserable girl who would only take us to the door even though the coach was on the far side of the coach park. However, the Emerald rep. was very good and the transfer to Arles was fine. It was very nice to find that we had been upgraded from Panoramic Balcony Cabin to a Grand Balcony Cabin. This was almost perfect apart from the very narrow space between bed and shower room. I've seen less smart shower rooms in some high grade hotels! The rest of the cruise did not disappoint and the crew could not have been nicer, more helpful or friendlier. They said they worked as a family and indeed they seemed to be just that with very little division between crew of different rank. We were lucky to have excellent weather the whole time and would recommend this cruise without reservation. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: May 2017
The Quality of service and the food was excellent. However, we would recommend that meals be prepared with lower sodium. Some of us are on low sodium diet for health reason. This was not too much of a problem due to the wide variety of ... Read More
The Quality of service and the food was excellent. However, we would recommend that meals be prepared with lower sodium. Some of us are on low sodium diet for health reason. This was not too much of a problem due to the wide variety of foods available. We did read about this available option after the cruise. All the Staff working on board, from the manager to the housekeepers, were excellent, very attentive to our needs. They were very friendly and helpful. When describing our positive experiences to friends and family members, we always recommend viking cruises to our friends. Introduction lectures on the region were always excellent. Basic lessons on language were very good, though we already have basic knowledge of French. Tour guides were very informative. The cheese and wine event on the first day of the tour was very helpful for tour members to get to introduce themselves. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2017
Every single member of the crew was outstandingly good at their job. You could not find a friendlier, more efficient group of widely international people anywhere, The ship, itself, was well designed in every respect. Given the size ... Read More
Every single member of the crew was outstandingly good at their job. You could not find a friendlier, more efficient group of widely international people anywhere, The ship, itself, was well designed in every respect. Given the size limitations of a Danube river cruise, nothing could have been better. The lounge and restaurant on board were very well run, both in the range of food and the immaculate service of the staff. The whole atmosphere was very amenable at ll times. The off-board excursions were run with great precision, even down to the special guides for the slower, more disabled passengers when walking around in groups. Shuttlebuses in the larger cities were well organised and very useful. Tours around the three big cities were very informative but the outstanding trip of the week was in Slovakia to visit a real family in their home environment and experience their friendly hospitality. Brilliant at his job was Balazs Varga, who was on top of all planning and made everything run smoothly. We cannot praise the whole organisation enough for providing one of the most enjoyable holidays you could possibly have anywhere in the world.. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2017
Choosing the Danube Delights river cruise enable my husband and I to visit several cities in Europe that we hadn't before and how pleased we both were. We had never taken a cruise before and was excited to give it a go. What a ... Read More
Choosing the Danube Delights river cruise enable my husband and I to visit several cities in Europe that we hadn't before and how pleased we both were. We had never taken a cruise before and was excited to give it a go. What a wonderful experience it turned out to be from the moment we embarked in Budapest to the disembarkment in Nuremberg it couldn't have been better. Our ship was beautiful and much more spacious than expected. Our cabin was surprisingly spacious and well equipped for our comfort. Spotlessly clean and well serviced every day. Dining aboard was excellent and the service second to none. The staff or should I say crew aboard could not have been more helpful and attentive. The daily programme or itinerary was comprehensive and well planned. The evening entertainment was just enough after our busy time on our shore excursions which again was very professionally done and interesting. We saw some amazing sights along the way and thoroughly enjoyed our Discover More events. Our only regret was that we only had eight days...had we known how exceptionally fantastic this way of travelling was we wished we had stayed on longer! And yes, we will certainly be travelling again with Emerald Waterways. Read Less
13 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2017
We choose this river cruise as a 40th wedding present for ourselves, and anticipated it with excitement for months. We did not know what to expect, coming from the Midwest USA, and traveling to Russia, but it would be impossible for us to ... Read More
We choose this river cruise as a 40th wedding present for ourselves, and anticipated it with excitement for months. We did not know what to expect, coming from the Midwest USA, and traveling to Russia, but it would be impossible for us to leave the experience more pleased! Travel from Chicago to Moscow was grueling, but we expected that. What we did not expect, to this level, was the exceptional attention to detail when we arrived at Moscow airport, and for the next 13 days. EVERYTHING, (yes, everything) was designed to give the traveler every opportunity for the best experience ever. From the handling of our luggage, our boarding experience, the large and wonderfully appointed cabin, the excellent food (every meal!!!), to attentive housekeeping, and wait staff, both kitchen and the lounges, were magnificent. A sidebar about our luggage: one piece was lost by British Airlines, arriving to our room 48 hours later. The Helgi front desk pestered the airport/airlines several times each day, nagging, I think, like a grandmother whose child lost her doll, to make sure that it was found and delivered before we left Moscow. In the meantime, we received toiletries, robes and clothes, and free 3 hour laundry service. I believe that it is through adversity that the excellent prevail, and the Helgi crew did just that. Everyone had a smattering of the English language, with most speaking better than me. Absolutely no communication issues. The extra, unexpected events, like champagne in the hall to meet the captain and our new, temporary neighbors, to the daily briefings, cocktail hours was amazing. The exceptional service of Frank, the hotel/ship manager, Roland, the maître d'hôtel, Natred, our exceptional waitress whom we would have adopted in a heartbeat, to my new Siberian best friend Demetri, to Alvin, Jay, Tin, the excellent musicians, and others of whom I have forgotten their names but not their service, I tip my fedora. The vetting process of the Viking HR to find and retain such incredible staff (read: Family) must be outstanding, as they have employed the best of the best. While accommodations are important, it is the people who make the trip, and these folk certainly did this for us. We have traveled rather extensively over our many years, but this trip and experience climbs to the top of the list. Thank you, thank you!! Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2017
We chose this cruise as we had already travelled with Scenic from Nurnberg to Budapest and from Budapest to the Black Sea, so this trip completed our journey from the North Sea to the Black Sea. The ship was immaculately kept and ... Read More
We chose this cruise as we had already travelled with Scenic from Nurnberg to Budapest and from Budapest to the Black Sea, so this trip completed our journey from the North Sea to the Black Sea. The ship was immaculately kept and spotlessly clean, although not the newest ship in the Scenic fleet. Cruising with Scenic is utterly relaxing, because you know that everything they promise will be delivered. The staff are truly outstanding - they seem to have a knack for recruiting genuinely kind and pleasant people who work incredibly hard and deliver a very high level of service. The food was excellent - not a disappointing plate on the whole voyage. Buffet breakfast and lunch, silver service dinner with a vast number of choices. There's also a range of favourite fishes on the menu ( steaks, salmon, fish) in case you can't find anything you fancy. Every customer is invited once to Portofinos - an Italian restaurant with a six course menu and matched wines. Passengers on the upper deck also get La Rive, which is a French themed restaurant, although some preferred to stay in the main restaurant. Drinks are all included, including Champagne with breakfast if your tastes run that way... The included excursions are well run, informative and quirky, and there are also other enrichment items, like an opera concert in a castle. Interestingly, a fellow passenger ( okay, cruise nerd) had done a detailed breakdown of Scenics prices with other lines, and worked out that although Scenics brochure prices are a bit higher, by the time you work out what all the included benefits would have cost if you had paid for them separately on another line, Scenic was the best value for money. Plus as previously mentioned, you have the deep calm that comes from knowing that everything will run super-smoothly. Fellow passengers were a mix of Brits, Australians and New Zealanders and Canadians, (and a single group of Americans from Texas, who took lavish advantage of the included drinks, and were consequently loudly and obnoxiously drunk every night, and grumpily hung over every morning). Minor niggles? We got the impression that the food, although excellent, had had its budget cut slightly from previous cruises, which meant one of two fewer choices at lunch. The mooring at Basel on the first day was next to a large working scrapyard, so sitting on the balcony enjoying the holiday-starts-here gin and tonic was periodically interrupted by the massive crash of shredded car bodies being dropped into skips. Similarly, the mooring in Amsterdam was miles from the centre. However cruise lines presumably have to take whatever the harbourmaster allocates on the day. Individual laurels to Alex, hyper-efficient and charming Cruise Director from Germany, and Emilia ( Roumania) and Marek (Poland), both charming, helpful,funny and incredibly hard working bar staff. I can't think of any reason to ever go with a different river cruise line. Mekong next!... Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2017
Wonderful program from beginning to end. Amber is a beautiful ship. Fine dining and wonderful port stops. Excellent crew. Everything run to perfection. A good mix of early starts and late starts for tours. But, never enough time to ... Read More
Wonderful program from beginning to end. Amber is a beautiful ship. Fine dining and wonderful port stops. Excellent crew. Everything run to perfection. A good mix of early starts and late starts for tours. But, never enough time to see all that Eastern Europe has to offer. If ending in Budapest, add at least one night to your stay and explore this wonderful city. Highly recommend Scenic and this itinerary. A few notes: Scenic hotel was Prague Marriott (wonderful). Breakfast only for Prague extension. One city walking tour included for Prague, otherwise on own but Prague is an easy, walkable city to explore. Buses left hotel for port between 12:30 and 1:00 PM, one bathroom stop mid way. All buses for entire trip had small toilets - none had Wi-Fi. Rooms 301 and 302 on Amber and Jade have obstructed views (smaller balcony windows). There is a breakfast menu but you have to ask for it, otherwise buffet. Coffee/Hot Chocolate machines in bar, cookies set out at times. Also a glass encased snack/treat area directly at the bar. Type C electric adaptors needed for US electronics. A bus follows the bikers if any decide not to finish the ride from Melk to Durnstein. Bottles of water available at start of each tour. Amber docks far away from Marriott Budapest, so don't plan on walking from the ship to the hotel at the conclusion of the cruise. If booking a Budapest extension with Scenic, they provide bus transfer to the Marriott. We booked the Marriott on our own and the Travel Director added us to the bus transfer, after we asked. All required to be out of ship cabins by 8:45 AM. Could remain in bar area until departure. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2017
We have cruised a lot but this was our 1st river cruise and could not have been more happy. Ship was beautiful, crew was fantastic and we had a wonderful time. 3 days in Paris 1st and Franz our guide was great. All the transfers went ... Read More
We have cruised a lot but this was our 1st river cruise and could not have been more happy. Ship was beautiful, crew was fantastic and we had a wonderful time. 3 days in Paris 1st and Franz our guide was great. All the transfers went smoothly and it was first class service all the way. Love the design of the balcony cabins, the room was very comfortable and had plenty of storage. The Chef prepared delicious dinners and the guest Chef Fabien dinner was a nice surprise. Our cruise director Jana kept us entertained and there was plenty to do on the boat and off. Enjoyed the bikes on board and had fun biking in the south of France. Local guides were very knowledgeable and we enjoyed all the included tours. For us, having an English speaking crew was very helpful and all the employees were friendly and very efficient. We are already planning our next Emerald cruise! ⚓️ Read Less
Sail Date: May 2017
We chose this because of my sister and I had never experienced the Danube and we stopped in Vienna and Budapest. The river cruise was much better than we anticipated. All of the crew were just wonderful. Deb was always on top of ... Read More
We chose this because of my sister and I had never experienced the Danube and we stopped in Vienna and Budapest. The river cruise was much better than we anticipated. All of the crew were just wonderful. Deb was always on top of everything and she helped in so many ways. My sister and I both loved Deb. The cabin was beautiful and always kept clean and tidy by the cabin attendant. The entertainment and piano was spectacular. Vienna was undoubtably more than we expected. The extra special excursion to the Vienna Opera and Vienna City Orchestra was something we will never forget. I never wanted the performance to end! We had a wonderful vacation and one will never forget. This was our second Viking River Cruise. The first cruise was on the Rhine and was also memorable but with a different itinerary. Thank you Viking and a special thank you to the host, Debra Read Less

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