As a history buff, my husband had a desire to visit Troy and Istanbul. I was not comfortable visiting that part of the world. When I saw the Viking cruise from Istanbul to Venice, I knew that would be the way to get him where he wanted to go. We booked almost 2 years in advance. Unfortunately, our trip was scheduled about a week after the bombing in the market in Istanbul. So, the ship did not overnight there as planned. We did not have the time to go to the market or the Blue Mosque. But, they added a stop where we were able to go to Troy.
We had never sailed with Viking, but we had sailed with Royal 3 times and Carnival once. There is no comparison. Viking was much better. While they are somewhat more expensive, port excursions are included, wifi is free and beer and wine is included with lunch and dinner. Service was impeccable and staff were all friendly.
We let Viking handle our air travel arrangements and it was fortunate that we did. An engine problem in Dulles resulting in our 2 hour layover in Frankfort evaporating. Viking had a bus meet us at the plane, walked us through customs and bussed us directly to our connecting flight. There were about 25 of us in the plane. Our luggage was on the next flight. Viking personnel made sure that our luggage made it to the ship before we sailed that night.
The cabin was great, with a king size bed and wonderful shower. We enjoyed our balcony. As we left on Easter Sunday, there was a Godiva chocolate bunny on our bed that evening. The food was great, with regional specialties every night as well as some standard fare. I loved the afternoon tea time.
The ports of call were all great with the exception of Athens. It did have history with the Acropolis and the Olympic stadium, it was mostly like any other big city. Santorini was probably our favorite.
We are looking forward to a river cruise, probably next year.
King sized bed, great shower, balcony. Plenty of room.