March 26, 2023

In terms of cruises, ocean liners normally get all the eye. However cruises aren’t restricted to only the Caribbean, and even to the summer season months. Viking River Cruises affords all types of scenic river boat cruises via Europe—year-round, via rivers (and now oceans)—for vacationers who need to benefit from the journey and just a few locations alongside the best way.

I’ve been fortunate sufficient to have taken fairly just a few Viking European river cruises—from the Rhine in Switzerland to the Rhône in France to the Danube in Budapest (one of many favorites was the Christmas Market river cruise alongside the Rhine!). And I’m a fan.

In case you are making an attempt to resolve whether or not to riverboat cruise or not, I’ve put collectively a listing of the reason why it’s best to select to take a European Viking River Cruise.

You may e book your cruise on the Viking River Cruise web site.

1. There are Fewer Passengers

Irrespective of how good your cruise ship is, you’re in all probability not going to take pleasure in it practically as a lot if it’s cramped and crowded with lengthy waits on the buffet or no accessible lounge chairs. The Viking River Cruises boat was smaller with fewer folks; round 200, it felt far more comfy and made attending to know my fellow passengers over dinner all of the extra pleasing.

Viking Exterior Decks

2. Some Excursions are Included

On most of the bigger ocean liners, they entice you by promoting actually low cruise fares, however then nickel and dime you with excursions. That may add up shortly! On Viking River Cruises there are included excursions, nearly one at each single European port.

Krems Austria Annette Pete

Most are designed to provide you a pleasant overview of the town you’re in. In fact, there will probably be different paid choices on the ports too. A few my favourite excursions have been an e-bike journey via the vineyards of Austria and a tour of Germany’s Black Forest.

Black Forest Annette

Black Forest

3. You’ll Have Open Seating at Dinner

You won’t anticipate this to be a plus, however for me, it positively was. Open seating meant that I obtained to fulfill and get to know extra folks. Every evening you possibly can choose a distinct group to take a seat with or you possibly can dine with the identical folks each night. It’s completely as much as you. Both method, it was enjoyable to check notes in regards to the excursions with my new pals on the finish of the day.

Viking River Boat Dining Table


4. Your Room Comes With Free Films

Alright, so possibly binge watching motion pictures doesn’t prime your record of thrilling European cruise actions. Nonetheless, it was nice to return again to my room on the finish of a protracted day and settle in for the evening with a free flick.

5. It’s Conde Nast’s Readers Favourite River Cruise Line

Yup—Condé Nast readers ranked Viking River Cruises because the #1 river cruise line on the market. Sufficient stated, proper?

Viking Riverboat Ship

6. It’s a Clean Trip

Movement illness may simply break a cruise trip, so I used to be relieved to search out that each one 4 river cruises I’ve been on have been easy from begin to end. No Dramamine wanted!

River Boat Upper Deck

7. It’s Informal

Yay to no gala nights! Dinners on the cruise are informal, so that you received’t have to fret about packing a proper outfit or getting all dressed up on the finish of a protracted day. Simply turn into one thing comfy (enterprise informal normally), sit, and seize a drink.

8. The Views are Unbelievable

When our cruises set off, I used to be actually trying ahead to issues like visiting the Christmas markets and seeing some new cities. What I didn’t anticipate was for the views in-between the ports to be so scenic. There will probably be loads of downtime on the ship, so you possibly can repeatedly loved watching the surroundings cross by from the highest deck as you make your technique to the following cease.

Danube Views


9. You’ll Solely Need to Pack (and Unpack) As soon as

How else are you able to see 8 cities in 8 days and solely must unpack your bag as soon as? Having what amounted to a transportable lodge room took a ton of stress out of this course of. Plus, there was loads of drawers and closet house for 2.

10. You Can Expertise Crusing By a Lock

Crusing via the locks on the Rhine, Rhone and Danube was an unexpectedly cool a part of the journey, and one thing you possibly can’t expertise on an ocean cruise. Locks are principally water administration programs that assist boats navigate a river by elevating and reducing the water degree. They’re a feat of engineering and crusing via them by no means actually obtained previous.

Viking Rivere Boat Flag

11. You Can Discover A number of International locations in One Journey

Throughout our Christmas Markets alongside the Rhine, we handed via 4 nations: Switzerland, Germany, France, and the Netherlands. And the Romantic Danube was 3 nations: Hungary, Austria and Germany. I don’t know of every other technique to see that many nations in so few days whereas nonetheless having time to benefit from the expertise.

Annette at Koblenz Germany


12. Meals Include Complimentary Wine

I’ve informed you (about 100 instances earlier than) that pink wine is certainly one of my true loves. So, it’s an additional perk when it’s on the home throughout meal instances. The freebie may be for the home pink or white, however it has at all times been good and there are many choices to improve.

13. The Rooms are Snug

Viking River Cruises set my room as much as be a comfortable retreat from the get-go, with welcome champagne ready for me once I boarded and a plate of recent fruit delivered day by day. Between the fruit, the day by day candy treats left within the room, and the view from the veranda, it was an ideal spot to start out and finish the day in.

14. Anytime Cappuccinos. It’s true!

As if the complimentary wine, beer, fruit, and sweets weren’t sufficient, every cruise was full with an computerized cappuccino machine which you could entry at your leisure. I cherished having the ability to stroll over to the lounge and seize a cappuccino (free of charge!) anytime.

15. The Meals is Actually Good

Every mealtime, you possibly can select between having a full meal within the eating room or snacking on one thing lighter within the lounge. Most mornings, I opted for the latter and had a easy croissant and cup of espresso for breakfast. I did take full benefit of the cruise’s lunch and (particularly) dinner choices, although.

The cooks on Viking River Cruises have at all times put collectively a artistic menu to accommodate all types of diners, choosy eaters and vegetarians included! It was particularly enjoyable once they had themed dinners associated to the nation we have been in.

Riverboat Lunch

16. The Ports Aren’t Vacationer Traps

The cruise itself was pretty, however for those who’re in it for the locations in addition to the journey, this level is a big plus. Not like a whole lot of different cruises, you received’t be stopping at ports stuffed with overpriced tchotchkes and Americanized eating places. We made stops to see European historic downtowns, cathedrals and church buildings, castles and palaces, and even just a few UNESCO World Heritage Websites. And in lots of circumstances they have been all inside strolling distance from the ships port.

Passau Castle Germany

17. The Small Dimension of the Ship

The smaller measurement of riverboats will let you get nearer to the shores of a metropolis, so you possibly can actually expertise all that every vacation spot has to supply with out being dropped off in a vacationer port. Because of this for those who resolve to not take an tour, you possibly can simply get off the boat and stroll proper into city by yourself.

As well as, cruising on a small riverboat usually means avoiding the crowds which might be usually discovered on bigger vessels. This may result in a extra intimate and pleasing expertise, each on and off the boat. Plus, it’s a lot tougher to get misplaced onboard!

Viking Egil Riverboat

18. Assembly Different Cruisers

As a result of riverboats are usually smaller than ocean-going cruise ships, you’re extra more likely to run into the identical folks a number of instances all through your voyage. This creates a way of group and makes it simple to strike up conversations with fellow passengers. Whether or not you’re sharing a meal within the eating room, taking in a present within the lounge, or simply having fun with a while on deck, you’re sure to make new pals on a river cruise.

19. Animal Towels on Your Mattress

Have you ever ever been on a cruise and located a cute animal made out of a towel in your mattress? It’s a practice that goes again to the early days of cruising. Apparently, it began with a cruise ship engineer who used to make little animals out of towels for his daughter. When she obtained older, she began engaged on cruise ships and would make towel animals for the passengers.

The custom shortly caught on, and now it’s a staple of the cruise expertise. So subsequent time you see an elephant or swan in your mattress, bear in mind its origins and respect the little bit of enjoyable it brings to your trip.

Animal Towel

20. The Service is Excellent

On all my Viking River Cruises, the service was excellent. From the second we boarded the ship to the time we disembarked, we have been made to really feel like VIPs. The employees was attentive and at all times accessible to reply any questions we had. They went above and past to make our journey extra pleasing.

. . .

Even this record doesn’t sum up the whole lot I cherished about all my sailings with Viking River Cruises, whether or not it was on Europe’s Rhine, Rhone or Danube. We noticed and skilled a lot greater than I anticipated—each onboard and on the shore—from a beer tasting in Cologne to seeing the Carrières de Lumières Artwork Present within the South of France to visiting the UNESCO Kinderdijk Windmills in Netherlands.

In case you’re trying to e book a straightforward getaway, taking a European Viking River Cruise is a good possibility and you’ll e book right here.

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This put up was offered in a partnership with Viking River Cruises. All opinions my very own. This put up might comprise affiliate hyperlinks. In case you make a purchase order via my hyperlinks, I earn a fee that helps to maintain this weblog working—at no additional value to you. You may learn my full disclosure right here.