A couple years ago Viking River Cruises released a ship concept that would revolutionize river cruising – forever. The name of these new ships – Viking Longships – and they would pave the way to sleeker river cruising.
When I first thought of taking a river cruise I thought it was for a much older demo. A lot of people I’ve interviewed over the years have always said river cruising was boring and there’s nothing to do. So last spring I took to a sailing on Viking Odin to find out for myself.
Here are 10 reasons to sail a Viking River Cruises’ Longship:
1. Comfort. The longships were designed with comfort in mind, plying through the water with next to no vibration and some of the quietest engines afloat.
2. Easy On/Off. When you first arrive to the pier you can precede right to your stateroom, there are no long embarkation lines and baggage processes. It makes the exchange from land to ship flawless.
3. No Crowds. With a capacity of 190 people, you will not find areas of mass congestion around the ship. With so few people sailing, it’s impossible not to get acquainted with your shipmates. Chances are you’ll make friends for life.
4. See Hidden Ports of Call. A lot of the big ocean cruise ships can’t navigate the channels that the longships can, there just too shallow. Since there’s a draught of under six feet on the longships, it allows access to ports with shallower water.
5. Guided Tours. Most every port has a guided tour with your own earpiece that allows you to keep at your own pace while learning about the destination.
6. Excursions Included. Forget paying $79.99 for an excursion on Viking, the line includes excursions and allows you take part if you choose, free of cost.
7. State of the Art Rooms. Free wifi, on-demand programming, bathrooms with heated floors and floor to wall windows make Viking Longships some of the most comfortable rooms afloat.
8. No Annoying Announcements. Since there is under 200 people per sailing, you meet before dinner and go over the next day’s plan. There is no need for announcements all day long. Breakfast, lunch and dinner are at set times as are the cocktails and entertainment.
9. Unpack Once. It goes without saying that one of the beauties of sailing the rivers of Europe is being able to experience a handful of places without carrying a backpack around. The ship will be your hotel that follows you around Europe.
10. Concierge Service. You will not find large swimming pools or huge gyms on the longships but what you will find is a concierge service that will get you whatever you need. If you want to work out in the morning the concierge will arrange a gym. If you need help finding your hotel, directions, advice on eating, ports or calling someone, they are there for you as well.
If you want a great way to see Europe while having your hotel following you, you’ll want to consider a Viking Longship.
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