viking river tours europe

The 5 Best Viking River Cruises in Europe

viking river tours europe

If you're looking for the best Viking River Cruises in Europe, you have a lot to consider. Viking's itineraries on Europe's most famous rivers -- like the Rhine, Danube and Seine -- are some of the best river cruise options in Europe for almost every kind of traveler. But there are plenty of other options to consider.

Viking's longships dock in the heart of each city, so sights and excursions are on your doorstep (sometimes that literally means the Eiffel Tower in Paris). The line's high-end offerings and free shore excursions also help make Viking river itineraries some of the most popular in Europe.

To help you decide which is the best Viking River Cruise in Europe for you, we've rounded up our five favorites. Read on and get planning.

1. Viking Danube River Cruise: Dazzling Capitals That Are Great for First-Time Cruisers

viking river tours europe

If it's your first time on a Viking River Cruise in Europe, check out Viking's week-long sailings along the Danube River . Immortalized in the famous "Blue Danube" waltz by Johann Strauss, this is one of the most popular Viking river cruises in Europe. Starting in Germany's Black Forest, the 1,770-mile Danube winds through 10 countries and four capital cities; Vienna , Bratislava , Budapest and Belgrade.

Viking's Danube River cruises sail between the grand Hungarian capital Budapest, a city divided in half by the river itself, and Passau in Germany. You'll visit the postcard-perfect landscapes of the UNESCO-listed Wachau Valley as well as magnificent Vienna. There, you're likely to hear that famous Strauss waltz played at one of Viking's visits to an atmospheric music hall.

For return visitors there are voyages along the lesser-explored Lower Danube to discover the Iron Gates gorge and culture-rich capitals of Bucharest and Belgrade.

2. Viking Rhine River Cruise: Get Your Fill of Riesling, Castles and Legends

viking river tours europe

One of the best Viking River Cruises in Europe takes place on the Rhine River and the scenery is spectacular. Rising in the Alps and meandering 820 miles through Switzerland, France , Germany and the Netherlands , the Rhine is lined with fairy-tale castles and wine-growing villages. All of that makes the Viking's Rhine cruises a great choice for first-time European river cruisers and returning visitors alike.

Viking's Rhine sailings wind through Germany's largest wine-producing region. Expect shore excursions to include vineyard visits and tastings of the region's famous Rieslings. Those glasses of wine go great with the glorious landscapes of the UNESCO-listed Upper Middle Rhine Valley , where legends swirl around towering Lorelei Rock and fantastical gorge-hugging castles with names like Pfalzgrafenstein and Sterrenberg.

For the ultimate itinerary, check out Viking River Cruises' Grand European Tour . This 15-day cruise travels through the heart of Europe between Amsterdam and Budapest. In many ways, it's a combination of the best Viking river cruises in Europe as it takes in the Rhine, Main and Danube Rivers and Dutch waterways.

3. Viking Seine River Cruise: Art and Romance on France's Most Famous River

viking river tours europe

Viking's European river cruise fleet includes four slightly smaller longships built to navigate France's iconic Seine River . Those ships are your ticket to one of the best river cruises in all of Europe -- and not just because Paris is your starting point.

Food, wine and cultural treasures are among the many pleasures on Viking's Seine River cruises. The Seine runs through the heart of Paris and Viking has an exclusive central docking location just a short walk from the Eiffel Tower. As you leave the romantic City of Light, look out for a replica of the Statue of Liberty.

The Seine is one of the best Viking River Cruises for art lovers. This corner of France has inspired generations of artists -- perhaps none more so than Claude Monet. Visits to his beloved garden are part of Viking's Seine River cruise excursions, where you'll see the Japanese bridge and water garden unchanged from when he painted them.

Manageable itineraries of only eight days are available, though the line does offer longer options. Viking includes excursions to the poignant Normandy beaches plus the Normandy American Cemetery and Memorial in Colleville-sur-Mer. You'll also get a dash of history in medieval Rouen and the quaint fishing village of Honfleur. Monet painted both.

4. Viking Bordeaux Region Cruise: A Treat for Foodies and Wine Lovers

viking river tours europe

Any trip to France is perfect for food and wine lovers, and one of the best Viking River Cruises in Europe for foodies and oenophiles is in Bordeaux . Itineraries include the Garonne, Girande and Dordogne Rivers, all of which wind their way through rolling hills home to more than 9,000 wineries. Those produce about 700 million bottles of wine a year, so expect sips of Saint-Emilion, Medoc and Sauternes on a Viking Bordeaux river cruise.

Cruises generally last eight days, and Viking begins and ends their Bordeaux cruises in the elegant UNESCO-listed port of Bordeaux. You'll also spend some time in Blaye, where cobbled streets lead to the 17th-century citadel dominating the charming centuries-old town.

If wine isn't your speed, Bordeaux is also a Cognac-producing region. You'll have the chance to create a personal bottle of Cognac at the family-run Camus Distillery . And for a true direct-to-table dining experience, join a truffle hunt in Perigord or savor fresh oysters from the bay at Arcachon.

5. Viking Douro River Cruise: Port and Vineyards as Far as the Eye Can See

viking river tours europe

Want a taste of Southern Europe on your next cruise? One of the best Viking River Cruises in Europe sails Portugal's stunning Douro River . Running from the mountains in Portugal's east, the Douro cuts through tranquil landscapes filled with vineyards.

Typical 10-day cruises start and finish in the Atlantic-facing city of Porto , where famous port wine warehouses line the waterfront. Learning the secrets of port production is a highlight on Viking Douro cruises, as are the lush green landscapes that stretch all the way to the Spanish border. From there, the line offers a scenic motorcoach tour to honey-colored Salamanca, Spain's oldest university town (try to spot the tiny frog hidden in the university's facade).

The Douro was first discovered by the Romans who named it the River of Gold. These days, it's hard to believe that the Douro was once a wild river, though when your Viking river cruise travels the awe-inspiring Carrapatelo Lock -- the deepest in Europe -- you just might see how history has shaped this region

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European River Cruises

Immerse yourself in the Old World as you sail Europe’s most iconic rivers. Discover Danube gems like Vienna and Budapest. See storied Rhine castles. Trace French history along the Seine. From the Main to the Moselle, the Douro to the Dordogne, the Viking experience is unsurpassed.

Danube River Cruises: View of Budapest Parliament

Danube River Cruises

Winding through ten countries past old-world cultures, emerald-greenhills and vibrant cities, the Danube has witnessed epic histories that have shaped all of Europe.

Rhine River Cruises: View of Katz Castle

Rhine River Cruises

Steeped in legend, the scenic Rhine flows through six countries. Fairy-tale castles and soaring fortresses along its banks evoke the spirit of medieval Europe.

Elbe River Cruises: View of Zwinger Palace

Elbe River Cruises

From the Bohemian highlands, the historic Elbe passes the soaring landscapes of Saxony and the baroque splendor of German cultural centers.

Main River Cruises: View of Johannisburg Castle

Main River Cruises

Forested hills, vibrant meadows and richly historic towns line the Main, a Rhine tributary celebrated for the ornate palaces that dot its tranquil shores.

Belém Tower in Lisbon, Portugal

Douro River Cruises

The Douro River travels along ancient wine estates, passing barcos rabelos laden with casks en route to Porto and Lisbon, defining a sublimely scenic corner of Europe.

Seine River Cruises: View of Notre Dame.

Seine River Cruises

The glorious Seine winds through elegant Paris into historic Normandy, passing bucolic villages and scenic landscapes and farm lands that inspired famed Impressionist artists.

Moselle River Cruises: View of hilltop castle

Moselle River Cruises

The tranquil Moselle twists through France and Luxembourg before traversing one of Germany’s most picturesque wine-growing regions, lined by steeply terraced vineyards.

Rhone River Cruises: View of Palace of the Popes in Avignon

Rhône River Cruises

The fabled Rhône, lined with vestiges of a rich Roman past, courses through picturesque Provence, cultivating renowned vineyards and vibrant wild flower fields.

Why Cruise the Rivers of Europe?

Viking takes you to the heart of Europe via its grand waterways, providing you with boundless insight into the continent’s cultural and historic treasures. Immerse yourself in the storybook villages, vibrant cultural centers and picturesque landscapes of The Netherlands, Austria, Germany, France, Hungary and Switzerland, and unlock a whole new world of discovery. Here is a sample of what you will see on one of our European river cruises:

  • Visits to Germany’s charming wine-producing villages
  • Culinary delights in Lyon, France
  • Medieval Prague, “City of a Thousand Spires”
  • The elegant boulevards and grand monuments of Paris
  • Historic Wittenberg, home to Martin Luther
  • Fairytale windmills of The Netherlands
  • Wine tastings in the quintas of Portugal’s Douro Valley
  • Budapest’s regal Parliament building and Chain Bridge
  • Vienna’s inspirational legacy of classical music
  • France’s famed wineries in Beaujolais, Bordeaux and beyond

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Map of Treasures of the Danube itinerary

Quiet Season Sailing to Scenic Gems

viking river tours europe

Discover quaint towns in Germany, Austria and Hungary. Celebrate Vienna and Salzburg’s musical legacy, and savor the culinary delights of Budapest and Bratislava’s brewing heritage. Enjoy scenic sailing through the Wachau Valley and admire sleepy villages along the Danube. With overnights in Vienna, Passau and Budapest, enjoy more time to fully explore. The winter season is an ideal time to visit, with fewer travelers and easier access to landmarks.

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Map of Treasures of the Danube itinerary

To learn more about each port of call and our included as well as optional excursions, click on the individual days below.

Itinerary and shore excursions are subject to change and may vary by departure.

More features, services and excursions included

One complimentary shore excursion in every port of call

Free Wi-Fi (connection speed may vary)

Beer, wine & soft drinks with onboard lunch & dinner

24-hour specialty coffees, teas  & bottled water

Port taxes & fees

Ground transfers with Viking Air purchase

Visits to UNESCO Sites

Enrichment lectures & Destination Performances

Your Stateroom Includes:

River-view stateroom

Bottled water replenished daily

110/220 volt outlets

Queen-size Viking Explorer Bed (optional twin-bed configuration) with luxury linens & pillows

Private bathroom with shower, heated floor & anti-fog mirror

Premium Freyja® toiletries

Plush robes & slippers (upon request)

40" or 42" flat-screen Sony® TV with infotainment system featuring Movies On Demand, plus CNBC, CNN, FOX & more

Telephone, safe, refrigerator

Individual climate control

*All amenities on board Viking Longships; amenities vary on other ships.

Pre & Post Cruise Extensions

More days means more to discover, with extension packages you can add before or after your Viking cruise or cruisetour. Enjoy additional days to explore your embarkation or disembarkation city, or see a new destination altogether with a choice of exciting cities. Pre & Post Cruise Extensions vary by itinerary and are subject to change.

viking river tours europe

Pre: Prague

From $949 | 3 Nights

viking river tours europe

Pre: Prague Premium

From $1,249 | 3 Nights

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Pre: Prague & Nuremberg

viking river tours europe

Post: Budapest

From $649 | 2 Nights

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Post: Budapest Premium

From $1,399 | 2 Nights

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  1. About Viking Aegir

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  2. Viking River Cruises Europe 2024

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  4. Viking River Cruises, 2019, 2020 and 2021 Cruise Deals, Destinations

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  6. Viking River Cruises in Europe: What to Expect

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