Review of my first river cruise via Viking Seine – Normandy to Paris 2009
Sailing on a river cruise is different than an ocean cruise.
The obvious difference between river cruising and sailing on the ocean is the size of the vessels. Because of space restrictions, river cruise ships have to scale-down the amenities that some cruise passengers might miss: spas, spinning classes, specialty restaurants, theaters, numerous bars and multiple lounges are a couple of the spaces that I noted.
During my cruise on Viking, I was in Cabin 301, which was a Category A for the duration of my week-long cruise. The cabin was comparable in size to most mass market cruise ships, but where I noticed a huge difference was in the bathroom. Trying to use the tiny shower stall was comical.
What a river cruise is like
River cruising is offered on all the great rivers of the world. Viking River Cruises, a German run enterprise (think Euros on board and German/English translations on the buffet line), has a good share of the market and offers a comfortable experience. Uniworld, is another vendor, offering a more luxurious shipboard product.
All in all, docking in Paris and seeing the city was a great and affordable way to visit France. I would recommend it to anyone wanting to relive history on the great rivers of the world.