Cities of Light cruise starts in Prague for a few days. Stayed at the Hilton which is an easy walk to Old Town. Did the Lobkowicz Castle extra tour was lovely with lunch and a 3 piece musical concert. Info makes it look like the Prince will greet you, not the case. Only thing that could be improved is with tighter security into the Prague Castle grounds that Viking add time to itinerary so you can have more time on the grounds. We had no time to see other parts of Prague Castle had to get to lunch.
Bus ride to Nuremburg for free time and then board ship in Bamberg. There is not a lot of time in Nuremburg just enough for lunch. Did get to Zeppelin Field only, able to drive by Palace of Justice.
Bamberg on Sunday morning was nice but nothing open. Had to be on boat by noon to sail.
So saw the sights and a cup of coffee.
We got a table on the outside deck for lunch while sailing away, fantastic. Great weather. Food service exceptional and well supervised. A travel companion was gluten free and the maître d really sought her out first day and gave her special menu selections daily. Got her special croissants.
Tour director was strong on ship and excursions.
Front desk staff was pleasant but didn't go out of their way to problem solve. Another traveler left a coat on a bus and desk clerk said she would have to wait til the bus returned from another trip. We saw the bus was still out front and asked could the driver be getting a snack in back and sure enough he was and she was able to get her coat.
Drive from Trier to Paris is an all day affair leaving ship at 8am and getting to Paris at 6 pm. stop at American Cemetery and Luxembourg was nice.
Our tour guide suggested a restaurant for lunch and the other guides did too and place was overwhelmed and no place to sit. Should have several places to recommend. Also it was just ok not great.
The last guide on the bus to Paris was young and enthusiastic but several people noted she talked too much and was too loud. She also did not have a grasp on her audience.
Hotel Pullman in Paris is great location with really great breakfast buffet included. Main restaurant on lobby level had a quirky menu that was supposed to be a California menu but wasn't. Really good cafes nearby for dinner.
The Versailles extra tour was expensive and a disappointment. It was really crowded and not worth it.
Stops along the cruise were good, not enough time in Rothenburg to shop. In Mainz we skipped the city tour because the boat docked right in the city. We were able to get to some great stores and a coffee house. Stop in Rudesheim was nice but Not a place for all the extra time we we're given. Cochem or Berkastel would have more pleasant for a longer stay.
We stayed extra time in Trier because we were told ship would be 10 minutes away it was more like 30 minutes walk.
Probably the biggest criticism was the bus to the airport in Paris. We were not dropped of at terminal 2E rather across the airport and had to drag our luggage to the terminal that included stairs and limited elevators. This trip had many older folks and it seemed like a really bad mixup on Vikings part. Having to drag luggage so far was time consuming and tough. There was still luggage check lines, customs and security to go through, it would have saved 30 minutes to be dropped off in the right spot.
I shared the cruise with a friend, and she opted not to stay extra two days in Paris. Viking would not book me a separate room, even though two other people I was traveling with had singles. My travel agent booked separately. Additionally Viking would not provide transportation to airport initially even though my air was through Viking.
Last be careful if they book your air. We were booked from Philly to JFK which going over was fine. Coming back they did not book enough time between JFK and Philly for us to go through customs and re check bags and we missed our flight. Got no help from airline rebooking to Philly. Said they could not get us to Philly til next day. Travel agent said Viking feels 45 minutes between flights is ample to connect. Clearly wrong!
Heidelberg excursion and lunch was good.
Included tour of Rechsburg Castle was good also but transport to and from is tricky due to road closing to traffic during day in town, so lots of walking in rain and on slippery cobble stones.
Prague is a cobblestone city, sturdy shoes are a must.
Breakfast and lunch have small menu to order from plus large well stocked buffet. Breakfast has oatmeal and cream of wheat with fruit and but bar with hot steamed milk really nice. Lots of breads, meats, cheese, fruit, cereals, eggs and sides. Lunch had excellent salad bar offerings, pasta to order, desserts and fruit.
Dinner had lots of choices, no buffet. Not hard to find something you like.
No room service or food off hours. Exception is some cookies at the expresso machines.
They provide bottled water on bus trips and have umbrellas available to use.
Bar drinks priced well. Wine and beer are available with lunch and dinner included. They will also open wine you purchase in town.
Clean, good housekeeping and very unobtrusive, nice toiletries and towels. Well laid out. Balcony was nice to sit out on in nice weather.