Viking Longship Alsvin
The stunning Viking Longship Alsvin entered into service in 2014, as one of 14 Longship-class vessels released by Viking River Cruises that year, including Bestla, Buri, Delling, Eistla, Gullveig, Heimdal, Hermod, Hlin, Idi, Ingvi, Kara, Kvasir and Lif. With an itinerary that covers the Rhine, Main and Danube Rivers, a voyage on the Alsvin will provide guests with a first-hand view of some of Europe’s most beautiful regions, from the unspoilt beauty of the Wachau Valley to cosmopolitan capitals like Amsterdam and Budapest. With ‘green’ features including solar panels and hybridised diesel-electric engines, the Alsvin continues Viking’s pledge to provide cleaner, more efficient and quieter river cruises. Combine this with the contemporary design features onboard, including the incredibly light and airy atrium, and you can see why the Longship-class vessels like this one have a loyal following.
PassengersMost guests onboard will be of a more senior demographic, but the contemporary design sometimes appeals to slightly younger travellers too. Regardless of age though, guests will have a keen interest in experiencing new things, learning about different regions and cultures and immersing themselves in the various activities and sightseeing tours. The ship can hold up to 190 passengers, and the 50 crew members onboard will ensure that their stay is comfortable and relaxed thanks to their attentive and friendly service. Guests can also learn of the next day’s plans with the Viking Daily newsletter that’s delivered every evening, and there’s a dedicated Cruise Director onboard to assist guests throughout the voyage.
Dining The main restaurant onboard benefits from stunning floor-to-ceiling windows which allow guests to appreciate the river views as well as the cuisine. Breakfast, lunch and dinner are served in the main dining room, with breakfast and lunch being served as a buffet, offering a wide range of dishes from cereals, cheese, continental meats and fresh fruit for breakfast, to soups, entrees, salads and pastas for lunch. Dinner is waiter-served, with regional and more traditional menu options. Throughout the day, dress code is casual (although many guests opt for dressy casual during the evenings) and there is an open-seating arrangement. Complimentary drinks, including local wines, beers, soft drinks and water are available with lunch and dinner, with the option to upgrade your beverage package to include fine wines and premium spirits also available. Guests can help themselves to complimentary hot beverages from the self-serve station, around the clock. Alternatively, passengers can grab some casual fare in the Aquavit Terrace, which has an al-fresco area and offers an early-riser breakfast buffet as well as lighter bites.
Entertainment The Observation Lounge onboard features a full-service bar, and a relaxing environment in which to chill out with a refreshing drink during the evening hours. The onboard entertainment programme coincides with the Viking Culture Curriculum of activities that complement the itinerary, meaning that guests can enjoy local performances of regional music and dance, such as Austrian classics and Hungarian themed dinners.
Activities There is a very diverse activity programme onboard, which will surely pique your interest. As part of the itinerary there are guided tours available which include the use of independent headsets, as well as various sightseeing opportunities and independent exploration. Examples of the Viking Culture Curriculum on the Alsvin’s current itinerary include learning how to make your own Rudesheimer coffee, tasting hand-carved Dutch cheeses and local jenever liquor, and trying your hand at sjoelen (Dutch shuffleboard). Guests will also have the opportunity to listen to expert-led lectures on current affairs in Germany, the Netherlands and the EU, and can also learn about glassblowing while in Miltenberg, with the fortune of seeing a live demonstration. There is also a library corner, a boutique and complimentary Wi-Fi available onboard.
Accommodation The Viking Longship Alsvin has 95 staterooms and suites onboard, which vary in size from 135 sq. ft. to 445 sq. ft. and boast either a French balcony or veranda, apart from standard staterooms on the Main Deck which have picture windows instead. Every room, irrespective of category, features similar amenities including hotel-style queen size beds (with optional twin configuration), en-suite with shower and premium bath products, safe, fridge, hairdryer, climate control, flatscreen TV with infotainment system and entertainment package, bottled water (replenished daily) and bathrobes and slippers (on request). In addition, Veranda and Explorer Suites have larger bathrooms with heated floor and mirror, separate seating and sleeping areas, both a veranda and a French balcony, and two TVs instead of one. Explorer Suites also feature a wraparound veranda that offers sensational 270-degree views of the river landscapes.
Spa/Wellbeing When not ashore, the majority of your time onboard will be immersing yourself in the activities and enjoying the culinary treats in the dining room, but if you do wish to simply relax and watch the world go by, the Sun Deck is fitted with plenty of sunloungers and a shaded sitting area to enjoy. There is also a putting green and a walking track if you wish to use them.
Itineraries The Viking Longship Alsvin currently operates the Grand European Tour itinerary, which sails from Amsterdam to Budapest for a 15-day river cruise extravaganza. As part of this itinerary, guests can enjoy 13 guided tours and visits to nine UNESCO World Heritage sites, including the beautiful Kinderdijk windmill network in Holland. Take a morning tour of Cologne, including Germany’s largest cathedral – the Dom – or soak up the gothic and baroque architecture in Wurzburg and Rothenberg. Sample some distinctive smoke-flavoured beer in Bamberg and wander some of Budapest’s iconic sites including Matthias Church and the Fisherman’s Bastion. Pre- and post- extensions in Amsterdam and Prague are also available.