Viking Longship Lif
In Norse, the name simply means ‘life’, and onboard the Longship Lif guests can be sure to enjoy theirs, with numerous experiences and activities to keep boredom at bay, and the wonderful ambience and friendly vibes which will ensure every traveller has an unforgettable stay. Since its inauguration in 2014, the Longship Lif has cruised some of Europe’s most majestic rivers, with its current itineraries concentrating on the River Danube and, occasionally, the Rhine and Main Rivers too. The ship’s ingenious use of environmentally-friendly features, including solar panels and an organic herb garden situated on the Sun Deck, and energy-efficient hybrid engines powering the vessel, will ensure that every river cruise is ecological, quiet and clean. Its patented corridor design, contemporary style and Scandinavian influences are just some of the reasons why Viking River Cruises continues to win awards for its cruising offerings, and the demand for the Viking all-inclusive package continues to grow.
Passengers All Longship-class ships can hold up to 190 passengers; most of whom are English-speaking, well-travelled and keen to learn more thanks to the Viking Culture Curriculum that is included in the fare. The majority of guests have a love of history, the arts, culture and heritage, and appreciate the fantastic hospitality onboard, including the expert assistance of the dedicated Programme Director.
Dining The main restaurant is a beautiful setting for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and features floor-to-ceiling windows and spacious design that provide guests with a casual yet sophisticated environment in which to enjoy the onboard cuisine. There is no formal dress code and the open-seating policy provides flexibility for all guests. Breakfast and lunch are served in buffet format, with a fantastic range of items available ranging from cheeses, continental meats, fruit, pastries and cereals first thing in the morning, to entrees, desserts, soups and salads at lunchtime. Dinner is a five-course a la carte menu, created by professional chefs using locally sourced, seasonal produce. Authentic specialities and popular favourites are available to suit all palates. Complimentary drinks including soft drinks, beers and local wines are included with lunch and dinner, and there is also the option to upgrade to a premium beverage package if desired. Tea and coffee are available 24/7 from the self-serve beverage bar. If guests are hoping to tuck into a casual, lighter lunch or dinner, the al-fresco Aquavit Terrace can be found in front of the Observation Lounge and offers indoor and outdoor seating.
Entertainment The Observation Lounge is the main spot for evening entertainment, which benefits from a lively full-service bar and plenty of space to relax, chat and enjoy a drink. Local musicians are often invited onboard to perform, with shows being specific to the itinerary, including Serbian and Hungarian folkloric performances and classical music revues. Social events, including the captain’s welcome and farewell dinners are hugely anticipated on every voyage.
Activities There is a library and a boutique onboard if guests feel like grabbing a book or browsing for treats. The onboard Wi-Fi (free of charge) is also useful if you wish to stay in touch with loved ones back home, or wish to surf the net during your free time. The Viking Culture Curriculum provides plenty of enriching opportunities for guests to appreciate, from expert-led lectures on topics including Serbian current affairs, the legend of Dracula, orthodox religion and the formation of the EU. Culinary tasting sessions, including sampling Dutch cheeses and juniper-flavoured jenever liquor, are also available. Onshore, guests can enjoy a multitude of excursions and guided tours, led my local experts and enhanced with the provision of individual audio headsets. As well as the guided walking tours, guests may also have the chance to appreciate unique experiences including learning how to make their own Rudesheimer coffee and witness a traditional Puszta horsemanship display in Kalocsa, Hungary.
Accommodation Irrespective of which stateroom category you choose – and there are eight of them to decide between! – you can enjoy an outside river view, beautifully-appointed stateroom and stylish décor. The eight categories of accommodation are mainly split according to size, ranging from French balcony staterooms (135 sq. ft.) to Explorer Suites (445 sq. ft.) There are 25 Standard staterooms situated on the Main Deck, which are slightly larger than French balcony staterooms, sizing up at 150 sq. ft., but do lack a French balcony and instead offer a half-height picture window. The remaining categories include Veranda staterooms (205 sq. ft. with full-size veranda) and Veranda Suites (275 sq. ft.) with full-size veranda and French balcony. All categories of accommodation feature similar amenities, including configurable hotel-style beds, ensuite bathroom with premium toiletries, individual climate control, refrigerator, hairdryer, in-room safe, direct dial telephone, flatscreen TV with entertainment package and infotainment system and complimentary bottled water. Bathrobes and slippers are also available on request.
The Viking Longship Lif’s excellent Sun Deck provides panoramic 360-degree views of the passing countryside and cityscapes, and is a perfect spot to relax and unwind during your free time. There’s a shaded sitting area and plenty of sunloungers to claim. There is also a walking track to enjoy and a putting green if you fancy challenging a friend to a spot of golf.
Itineraries The Lif currently offers the 11-day Passage to Eastern Europe itinerary, which includes seven guided tours and sails through five different countries, including Hungary, Serbia, Romania, Croatia and Bulgaria. View the stunning countryside, sail through the Iron Gate and admire the incredible Decebalus rock sculpture, carved into the hillside. Spend time in the Nikola Tesla museum in Belgrade, tick off Budapest’s iconic sights or visit the Veliko Tarnovo – the former capital of Bulgaria. This itinerary also offers pre- and post- extensions in Bucharest and Transylvania, and Prague. In addition, the Lif also operates the 23-day European Sojourn tour, which includes elements of the above itinerary, in combination with the 15-day Grand European Tour which begins in Amsterdam – perfect for an ultimate European extravaganza.