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Van Gogh Review

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Van Gogh
4.0 / 5.0
2 reviews

Pros
All-inclusive rate includes everything from drinks to excursions
Cons
No flexibility on when or what you eat, with one seating for each meal and a fixed menu
Bottom Line
Intimate and sophisticated; a lovely way to explore the French countryside in comfort

About

Passengers
105

Crew
27

Passenger to Crew
3.89:1

Launched
1999; refurbished 2007 and 2018

Shore Excursions
0
Sails To
Sails From
CroisiEurope Cruise Deals
Kim Foley MacKinnon
Cruise Critic Contributor

Van Gogh Overview

CroisiEurope's Van Gogh, which cruises from Lyon on the Rhone and Saone rivers, visits ports like Avignon and Arles, where passengers can visit some of the same spots the ship's artist namesake used to haunt.

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Completely refurbished in 2018, the ship sports a new cabin reconfiguration, offering more space and lots of welcome innovative amenities. It accommodates 105 passengers, in 20 upper deck cabins and 34 main deck cabins, all of which are generously proportioned and offer full views of the river. The new decor throughout the ship is a big departure from its former bright, and perhaps slightly dated, color scheme. Now it features a sophisticated and chic taupe color palette with little pops of color. Artwork throughout pays homage to Van Gogh.

With such an intimate number of passengers, cruisers quickly get to know each other and friendships often spring up quickly. The general vibe is convivial and relaxed. Other than the daily excursions off the ship and a few activities offered onboard, there is not a lot to do other than relax and watch the world go by. This is probably not the cruise for anyone looking to be constantly entertained.

Thoughtful and attentive crew members go above and beyond to make sure everyone is happy, learning guests' names and drink and food preferences within a day or two. Other than a few specialty items, all alcohol is included, so passengers know that the all-inclusive rate is truly all-inclusive.

CroisiEurope is a French line, and the majority of the passengers are French. Onboard announcements are tailored to the nationalities of the passengers, however, and the front desk staff are all fluent in French, English, Spanish and German. On our cruise, we were the sole American onboard and the charming purser often called me out by my name during announcements.

The meals are French too, with a fixed menu. Expect three-course meals at lunch and dinner, with a very French bent, such as duck confit with potatoes and carrots or rack of veal with shallots and tarragon. People with food allergies or special dietary needs can be accommodated, but you'll need to make your preferences known.


Top Van Gogh Itineraries

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Fellow Passengers

As one of Europe's biggest riverboat operators, CroisiEurope is well known throughout France, Germany, Spain, increasingly in the U.K. and, more recently, it is pushing to attract U.S. passengers. The nationality mix varies from sailing to sailing with French still the main base. That said, the line has been pairing up with more U.K. and U.S. tour operators and charter companies. In 2017, U.S. company Road Scholar had such a success with CroisiEurope, it has booked more charters for 2018.

Overall, most passengers are in their late 60s or early 70s and are quite active, participating not only on the daily excursions, but also happy to dance into the night.


CroisiEurope Van Gogh Dress Code

Other than the final "gala" evening, when passengers pull out their ties and heels, casual clothes -- even jeans -- are the order of the day. No official dress code is specified by CroisiEurope, but they suggest passengers will be comfortable in "smart casual" clothing, except for the gala. Other than perhaps changing into slightly nicer shirts and shoes at dinner, comfortable clothing dominates (we packed several cocktail dresses that we never ended up wearing after realizing how casually everyone else dressed).

Van Gogh Inclusions

CroisiEurope has an all-inclusive price, which includes everything from food to excursions to most alcohol (Champagne and top shelf liquors cost more). Beverages include mineral water, fruit juice, tea, coffee and a large selection of house wine, beer and liquor. In addition, depending on the cruise, transportation to and from the ship may be included.

You don't need cash onboard until the last day. Gratuities are not automatically added to your bill or included in your fare, as is the case on most other cruise lines, and it's important to note that they can't be charged to a credit card. The last night of the cruise, guests are informed that an envelope will be delivered to their cabins and a box is placed on the reception desk for passengers to leave tips. The money is shared between all the crew. Most passengers tip in euros, but pounds or dollars are acceptable if that's all you have. Suggested gratuity is 8 to 10 euros per person per day.


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Van Gogh Ratings

CategoryEditorMember
Cabins5.03
Dining4.03.5
Entertainment3.02.5
Public Rooms5.04
Fitness Recreation1
Family1.0N/A
Enrichment3.01.5
Service5.04
Value For Money5.04.5

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More about CroisiEurope Van Gogh

Where does CroisiEurope Van Gogh sail from?

CroisiEurope Van Gogh departs from

Where does CroisiEurope Van Gogh sail to?

CroisiEurope Van Gogh cruises to Lyon, Arles and Avignon

How much does it cost to go on CroisiEurope Van Gogh?

Cruises on CroisiEurope Van Gogh start from null per person.

Awards and Recognition

CroisiEurope Van Gogh Member Reviews

naysmiths@gmail.com
Sail Date: Sep 2016
Visit to Camargue area on first day was very long time on the bus with very little wildlife to see. Would recommend leaving it out. Especially after a 5hr bus ride from Lyon to meet up with the tour the day before.... Read More
jwsfun
Sail Date: Jul 2015
We had been on the Symphonie on the Rhine for several days and then were transferred to the Van Gogh to sail the Rhone.... Read More

CroisiEurope Fleet

Gerard Schmitter
3.5 / 5.0
Editor Rating

4 reviews

A modest but comfortable ship that carries 176 passengers in 88 simply furnished cabins and offers a very French set menu at lunch and dinner.

View All CroisiEurope Gerard Schmitter Cruises
Indochine
4.5 / 5.0
Editor Rating


Launched in 2008 and completely refitted in 2012, Indochine is owned and operated by CroisiVoyages, part of French-owned and family-run CroisiEurope.

CroisiEurope Indochine Cruises to Asia View All CroisiEurope Indochine Cruises
La Belle de Cadix
3.5 / 5.0
Editor Rating

The Belgian-built La Belle de Cadix is dedicated to the Guadalquivir River and Gulf of Cadiz, actively cruising through all but high-summer months.

La Belle de l'Adriatique

CroisiEurope's La Belle de l'Adriatique, a 198-passenger oceangoing vessel, was purpose-built for coastal cruises and sails to Greece, Croatia, Montenegro and Cyprus.

Infante Don Henrique

The 142-passenger Infante Don Henrique is one of three CroisiEurope river vessels that sail on Portugal's Douro and measures 246 feet in length.

Victor Hugo

The 98-passenger Victor Hugo is one of a pair of smaller ships in CroisiEurope's fleet of European river cruise vessels designed for shallower rivers.

Lafayette
4.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating

Lafayette is a sleek and stylish vessel and a departure from CroisiEurope's usual style in that its 84-passenger capacity is lower than the usual 100 to 180 range.

La Boheme

The 160-passenger La Boheme, which sails on the Rhine and Danube, CroisiEurope's 160-passenger Leonard de Vinci, which sails on the Rhine and Danube, offers French-inspired meals and an all-inclusive open bar.

Loire Princesse
4.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating

CroisiEurope was the first to design a river cruise ship to navigate the Loire River, and the result is the spare but stylish Loire Princesse.

Gil Eanes
4.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating

Offering competitive prices and French flair, CroisiEurope's 132-passenger Gil Eanes sails on five- and seven-night cruises out of Porto.

Leonard de Vinci

CroisiEurope's 160-passenger Leonard de Vinci, which sails on the Rhine and Danube, offers French-inspired meals and an all-inclusive open bar.

Cyrano de Bergerac
3.5 / 5.0
Editor Rating

CroisiEurope's MS Cyrano de Bergerac cruises the Gironde estuary out of Bordeaux, sailing the Garonne and the Dordogne rivers, principally to visit wine-growing areas.

Beethoven

The 180-passenger Beethoven, which sails the Rhine and Danube, is one of five vessels in CroisiEurope's large fleet of European river cruise ships that measure 360 feet.

Douce France
4.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating

CroisiEurope's Douce France, a 160-passenger vessel based on the Rhine, operates eight-night cruises between Amsterdam and Basel, travelling through Holland, Germany and Switzerland.

Modigliani

CroisiEurope's Modigliani, a 160-passenger vessel based on the Rhine, operates eight-night cruises between Amsterdam and Basel, travelling through Holland, Germany and Switzerland.

Monet

South Beach Miami vibe with lots of outdoor spaces, nine eateries, condo-style cabins and a five-slide waterpark; other highlights are low-cost Wi-Fi and full-sized bowling alley.

Symphonie

CroisiEurope's Symphonie, a 162-passenger vessel based on the Rhine, operates eight-night cruises between Amsterdam and Basel, travelling through Holland, Germany and Switzerland.

Botticelli

CroisiEurope's 151-passenger Botticelli operates on one of Europe's most famous rivers, the Seine. It boasts spacious public areas and an emphasis on its French heritage.

France

CroisiEurope's 160-passenger France operates on one of Europe's most famous rivers, the Seine. It boasts spacious public areas and an emphasis on its French heritage.

Renoir
4.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating

CroisiEurope's 158-passenger Renoir operates on one of Europe's most famous rivers, the Seine. It boasts spacious public areas and an emphasis on its French heritage.

Seine Princesse

CroisiEurope's 138-passenger Seine Princesse operates on one of Europe's most famous rivers. It boasts spacious public areas and an emphasis on its French heritage.

Camargue

CroisiEurope's Camargue, a 148-passenger vessel based on the Rhone and Saone, operates cruises through the South of France. It boasts spacious public areas and an emphasis on its French heritage.

Mistral

CroisiEurope's Mistral, a 158-passenger vessel based on the Rhone and Saone, operates cruises through the South of France. It boasts spacious public areas and an emphasis on its French heritage.

Princesse d'Aquitaine

CroisiEurope's Princesse d'Aquitaine, a 138-passenger vessel based on the Gironde River, operates cruises through southwest France. It boasts spacious public areas and an emphasis on its French heritage.

Michelangelo

CroisiEurope's 158-passenger Michelangelo sails Italy's Po River and Venetian Lagoon. It features spacious public areas, as well as complimentary bar drinks during the day and house wine, beer and drinks with meals.

Mona Lisa

The 98-passenger Mona Lisa is one of CroisiEurope's smaller ships, designed for shallow rivers. It operates cruises on the Tisza, Elbe, Danube and Rhine Rivers.

Fernao de Magalhaes

CroisiEurope 142-passenger Fernao de Magalhaes operates cruises along Portugal's Douro. All 71 cabins feature convertible double beds and floor-to-ceiling windows.

Vasco da Gama (CroisiEurope)

CroisiEurope 142-passenger Vasco de Gama operates cruises along Portugal's Douro. All 71 cabins feature convertible double beds and floor-to-ceiling windows.

Europe

CroisiEurope's 174-passenger L'Europe operates cruises on the Danube and Rhine Rivers. It offers complimentary bar drinks during the day and house wine, beer and drinks with meals.

Vivaldi

CroisiEurope's 174-passenger Vivaldi operates cruises on the Danube and Rhine Rivers. It offers complimentary bar drinks during the day and house wine, beer and drinks with meals.

Raymonde

Raymonde, one of CroisiEurope's 24-passenger hotel barges, sails the Marne Canal and the Saint-Martin Canal, in Paris. It includes select alcoholic beverages and soft drinks in its fare.

Madeleine

Madeleine, one of CroisiEurope's 24-passenger hotel barges, traverses the canals of Provence, following the wine route from Avignon to Sete, and stopping at villages along the way to sample local foods and wines.

Anne Marie

Anne Marie, one of CroisiEurope's 24-passenger hotel barges, traverses the canals of Provence, following the wine route from Avignon to Sete, and stopping at villages along the way to sample local foods and wines.

Toum Tiou

Toum Tiou is operated by CF Mekong River Cruises, a subsidiary of CroisiEurope. The 24-passenger ship's low draft allows it to access remote villages and the Gao Canal that flows into Saigon.

Toum Tiou II

Toum Tiou II is operated by CF Mekong River Cruises, a subsidiary of CroisiEurope. The 28-passenger ship's low draft allows it to access remote villages and the Gao Canal that flows into Saigon.

Lan Diep

Inspired by the Mekong's ancient tradition of riverboat building, the 44-passenger Lan Diep boasts a traditional Colonial style with wood finishing and a metal hull.

Jeanine
4.5 / 5.0
Editor Rating

Jeanine, one of CroisiEurope's 24-passenger hotel barges, operates cruises along France's canals and rivers. A 2013 refurb made it one of the most modern barges on the water.

Elbe Princesse
3.5 / 5.0
Editor Rating

CroisiEurope's vessel is powered by two paddlewheels with an shallow draught of four feet to enable sailing the tricky Elbe and Vltava Rivers between Berlin and Prague.

Indochine II
4.0 / 5.0
Editor Rating


Launched in 2017, Indochine II is a small river ship dedicated to sailing itineraries along the Mekong in Cambodia. Styling is classic with modern amenities.

Deborah
4.5 / 5.0
Editor Rating

CroisiEurope's 22-passenger barge ship built in 2016 offers decadent dining and pleasant accommodation traveling through France's Loire River canal.

Amalia Rodrigues

CroisiEurope's sixth ship on the Douro brings more of the line's European sensibilities and charm to Portugal.

La Belle Des Oceans

French river cruise line CroisiEurope has purchased the former Silver Discoverer and intends to refit it as the company's second oceangoing ship, La Belle des Oceans. It will enter service in spring 2020.

Zimbabwean Dream

CroisiEurope's newest vessel on Africa's Chobe River allows for European-style comfort while sailing one of the world's most often-overlooked waterways.

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