Cruise line: Viking River Cruises,
For my first ever luxury river cruise, I was pleasantly surprised and enjoyed every moment of it. I was particularly pleased with the young crew who were courteous and competent.
The accommodation is satisfactory, assuming you avoid the smaller cabins. The public areas are adequate, mostly well designed and comfortable. Be aware that the amenities and on board facilities do not compare to an ocean cruise ship. I did find the low key, sedate, environment of the luxury riverboat appropriate to the region and itinerary.
The cruise began in Passau, Germany. The cruise route is down the Danube to Budapest and Hungary, followed by a leisurely return. I sailed from Passau on Saturday evening, and then stopped in Melk on Sunday, where I visited the magnificent Benedictine Abbey. The Abbey made was a benchmark for the exquisite palaces, castles and cathedrals that followed. On Monday afternoon I arrived in the picturesque city of Budapest. Then the following afternoon the cruise sailed again, arriving in Bratislava on Wednesday morning. The next port I stayed in was for two nights in Vienna (the music capital of the world and cultural centre of Austria), where I enjoyed its many exciting and delightful pleasures, including “The Third Man” Ferris wheel. The final port before returning to Passau was in the town of Durnstein where I enjoyed some wine tasting in the local Heurigan – I’d certainly recommend the red.
Overall, I had a great time and would recommend others to go with Viking River Cruises for a short break river cruise down the Danube.