Guest Post: River Cruise Questions Answered

Viking longships river cruise

In recent years river cruising has been an increasingly popular form of vacations. In this post Viking River Cruises help us to answer some of the pressing questions about river cruise holidays.

How long can you spend river cruising?

River Cruise duration depends on the itinerary, the cost and how many countries you would like to visit. For example, Viking River Cruises offer short river cruises like the ‘Romantic Danube’ which lasts for 8 days from Budapest to Nuremberg including 6 guided tours and visits 3 countries. For something in the middle, the ‘Grand European Tour’ is 15 days long from Amsterdam to Budapest which lets you experience 13 guided tours and visits 5 countries. For those seeking a long river cruise the ‘European Sojourn’ is 23 days from Amsterdam to Bucharest which includes 19 guided tours and visits 9 countries.

What it comes down to is your budget and what you would like to see on your river cruise holiday.

How often can you get off the ship to explore?

Passengers can get on and off the ship whenever it is docked. The majority of the sailing is done overnight while passengers are sleeping meaning they get more time to explore each location. Guided excursions run from almost every destination we visit but our guests are also free to explore at their leisure.

What are the sleeping quarters like?

All Viking staterooms come with a Veranda and are fully air-conditioned. All rooms are non-smoking and for those who do smoke there is a designated outdoor smoking area on the ship. All rooms have a hair dryer and include stateroom amenities such as shampoo, conditioner, body lotion, shower cap and a vanity kit.

Can river cruises accommodate my dietary needs?

On Viking ships we can in most cases adhere to your dietary needs. Every meal has vegetarian options on the menu, and our chefs are able to prepare low-salt or gluten-free cuisine.

If guests require special diets such as diabetic or low-cholesterol meals, they must alert Viking Cruises one month prior to departure and also inform the waiters when on-board.

Why choose a river cruise over an Ocean cruise?

Viking River Cruises Longships don’t have any shops on-board unlike ocean cruising vessels therefore allowing you to spend more of your money on off-shore excursions.

The view on a river cruise is constantly changing as you wind your way through the continents, passing through cities and towns, farmland and forests.

Passenger numbers on river cruises are far less than ocean cruises. A river cruise is a touch more intimate, and offers the chance to get to know your fellow passengers as well as the crew.

Viking Longships dock in prime locations, so you can start exploring on foot immediately.

River cruises tend to be more relaxing, mainly due to the intimate setting of the ship. Guests can sit back and admire their surroundings – compared to an ocean cruising vessels where most of the exploring will be centred around the on-board entertainment.

What is the dress code on board a river cruise?

Dress is casual and comfortable, both on board and ashore. Because the weather can be unpredictable, it is best to bring layers. It is recommended that you have a sweater or light jacket for spring and summer, and a heavier jacket for chillier months. Rain can happen at any time, so a collapsible umbrella is a “must.” You are likely to do a good deal of walking during shore excursions, so you will definitely want sturdy, comfortable walking shoes; but, since our ships are much smaller than ocean cruising vessels, you do not have to worry about too much walking on board.

There are no “formal nights” on board, but there is usually a Captain’s Welcome Dinner and/or Farewell Dinner; on many itineraries, you will attend a concert, ballet performance or other dressier event. For these evenings, you might like to bring “dressy casual” wear.

 If you have any questions about River Cruising, please ask in the comments here or tweet @em_luxton and I’ll get Viking River Cruises to answer them. 

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