Viking River Cruises Archives – Crown Cruise Vacations
The first cruise I ever took was the 1976 inaugural tour of the Mississippi Queen. The paddle wheeler went from New Orleans to Cincinnati for my memorable voyage.
A favorite of cruisers, the Mississippi Queen was dismantled and sold for scrap in 2011. A sad loss for her many fans.
Viking To Offer Access to Highclere Castle, Filming Location of ‘Downton Abbey’
“Downton Abbey” fans are going to have a chance to visit filming locations for the popular TV series and movie, courtesy of Viking cruises.
Starting in 2021, Viking cruises will be offering a new pre/post cruise extension named “Great Homes, Gardens & Gin.” The extension was designed to give cruisers an exclusive look at several country estates that have served as settings for the acclaimed PBS and Masterpiece Theatre productions.
With my Viking cruise, I received a good-size box from FedEx. Inside was my personal itinerary, guidebook for the Rhine and its tributaries on which I will be traveling, plus a bright red leather luggage tag, two Viking River Cruises paper tags for my suitcases, welcome-to-the-cruise note, Viking sticker to put on my jacket when I arrive at the Basel airport so Viking staff can locate me for transfer to the ship, and a collector’s edition toiletry bag with a photo of Berlin on it.
Whew! Don’t know if I’ve ever been welcomed aboard a cruise like this before.
The booklet with departure information is quite useful. “One of the most important aspects of travel is anticipation,” Viking Chairman Torstein Hagan wrote in a preface note in the booklet. “Preparing for a trip should be exciting and enjoyable, so we have compiled this guide to help you with getting ready.”
Packing tips include what to wear on the cruise – mostly casual and comfortable – along with the necessity of good walking shoes. No need to pack an umbrella, unless you plan to spend extra time in cities before or after the cruise, because the ship has courtesy umbrellas.
Lots of advance information
The booklet also discusses telephone use in the countries we will visit plus area codes, time differences, and weather. I’m glad to see that the average temps for my dates of travel are highs in the 40s and lows in the 30s.
A chapter titled “Your Trip from A to Z” details everything from the use of adapters (bring one or two adapter plugs) to language (ship’s crew and tour guides all speak English) and much more.
Check-in time on the ship is very gracious. Early arrival passengers can relax in the ship’s lounge or leave luggage to explore the city. A light lunch buffet is served and passengers can have access to their staterooms at 3 p.m.
All the advance information is much appreciated. Certainly helps to have this at my fingertips as I get ready for a cruise adventure.
Story and photo by Jackie Sheckler Finch
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