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GoTravelLife

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About GoTravelLife

  • Rank
    Cool Cruiser

About Me

  • Location
    Atlanta
  • Interests
    Travel blogger, foodie, wine
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    Norwegian, Viking, Oceania
  • If you have a personal or hobby CRUISE or TRAVEL BLOG, include the url here:
    www.gotravellife.com

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  1. We did research and sign up for the optional excursions before the cruise- some sell out (like the Mercedes Benz tour). We also felt the included tours were just fine in some ports- and We specifically look for those that allow you to have a few hours of free time at the end as we like to explore on our own. My husband was very interested in a couple of the excursions that were optional, so I signed up for those prior just to avoid any disappointment!
  2. @rosethorn40 thanks! Now that we’ve seen the castle; we will do that next time!
  3. @irishgal432 we did not use Viking Air as I have status on Delta and upgrade certificates for this one, so we flew thru Amsterdam and it was fantastic. In the future, that may be what we do; but it didn’t make sense for us this time. Have a great day.
  4. We made the trek home yesterday- such a wonderful trip! Thanks for the follows and you’d like to see the full post now with photos and videos; please go to https://gotravellife.com/2019/06/02/Viking-river-cruise/ Enjoy!
  5. Yesterday in Cologne; we were all offered a two hour walking tour of the town- so it was a great way to get acclimated to this large city. We started at the Cathedral- and then fanned out to several of the ‘squares’ of pedestrian friendly markets, shops and biergartens. It was Father’s Day here so it was quite festive with big groups of men having fun. There was also a wine festival (absolute craziness!). There is much Roman history here as well that is still continuing to be discovered, as well as the war time destruction to review. Take a moment to look at the photos on the side of the cathedral to look at what remained after the bombings. Viking provided shuttle busses back and forth to the bus (after the walking tour and for the afternoon) or you can just walk back- which was about ten minutes. We lingered around town for awhile. For our evening, we chose the optional Kolsch beer dinner and tasting. We went to a local restaurant and were served a 4 course meal and more Kolsch then you can drink 🙂. We had exceptional guides tonight with amazing story telling skills. We then visited two other pubs to try their beers and headed back to the ship, ready to call it a day after all that beer. We left around 10p to make our way to the Netherlands.
  6. In Koblenz, we walked around the shops a bit once we arrived. After enjoying Ehrenbreitstein fortress; eating a flammkuchen, and wandering around the park to view the Berlin Wall pieces and the 9/11 US flag tribute to the fallen on that day; we returned to the ship for the daily port briefing; dinner and a fun evening dancing. Claudia and Rado do a nice job getting people out on the dance floor 🙂 Thanks for the evening picture from the webcam @notamermaid beautiful! We’ve had ‘company’ attached to us about half time so far.
  7. We found The Biergarten on our own- quite a few up and down the streets.
  8. Rüdesheim was fun last night- the town is small so we explored all the books and crannies. We had dinner at a Biergarten and enjoyed a bit of live music with our Schnitzel! Since we were in port all night, you could stay out late as you like, but the city was crowded with several other ships docked here tonight. Still a fun time. This morning was lazy for everyone as we are cruising to Koblenz and should arrive after lunch. This is a beautiful part of the Rhine and we’ve got some fantastic video to share. Vertical vineyards, many castles and quaint towns. The cruise director narrated this morning and told the story of Loreley and played the song as we passed by. Such a treat.
  9. The Heidelberg day is as follows: You arrive to Mannheim in the morning. The included Excursion is to take a bus to Heidelberg and spend part of the day there. I did not see any other options other than remaining on the ship. It takes about 40 minutes to get to Heidelberg, at which point you drive straight to the castle and you spend another 90 minutes touring the castle with the guide. There is no way to opt out of the castle trip(after our chat with the guide) , but it will be a suggestion of mine. It was very busy today with many other crew ship lines, along with other Viking lines as well, so we really didn’t get to see much of the castle other than main areas. We then board the bus and head back down to the Neckar river at which point we disembarked and our guide walked us to the market Square, This took another 20 minutes and he gave us the lay of the land of that particular area and we were given one hour of free time. Once we returned to the bus, it was 45 minutes as we drove to Gernshiem; and we we joined the ship there. The ship set sail soon thereafter and we arrived into Rudenshiem at 5 PM. There are several optional dinner tours here tonight, or you can enjoy the town on your own or have dinner on the ship, but we are staying here all night
  10. Today, we stopped in Kehl (Strasbourg is just across the river). We opted out of another bus tour as I feel like I’m gaining momentum here with a case of bronchitis (or a really bad cold) and were directed to a small hospital nearby. We did wait about two hours before giving up and deciding I will live another day and just going to try to get more rest tonight! We did stroll thru Kehl, gorgeous homes! We found a little market/shops street and bought souvenirs and had lunch outside people watching. Our afternoon trip was to the Mercedes Benz facility and factory. It’s about 40 mins by bus and was very educational. You spend about 45 mins at the sales facility (includes a movie) then head to the walk thru of the plant. The weather appears to be turning to rain and cool- so not sure what tomorrow holds for us.
  11. @notamermaid As to the Heidelberg stop tomorrow, unless it’s a downpour of rain; we will be on the panoramic tour- returning to ship about 2:30p. There are two dinner options for Rudensheim- one in a monastery and one at the Rudesheimer Schloss- has a mini train ride included as well. If any other options after our daily port update, will let you know.
  12. Oh my goodness I can’t believe I did that. Now I have to figure out how to edit the title. Smh. Thanks for pointing out!!!
  13. Yes, several said same thing after going today. 3 hours on bus for one hour there. We are in Colmar now. Somber but fascinating history. And to 3rdcoastfan; YES! Claudia is our cruise director; and Darren and Milena are taking great care of us 🙂. We will tell them you said hello!
  14. This is our second Viking Cruise and it’s lovely so far!! We arrived in to Basel yesterday morning; Viking team was there to greet us after baggage claim; easy bus ride to the ship (it can be in one of three locations). They had lunch offerings available as we waited for our room to be ready, which is was around noontime. We had reserved a Veranda Suite AA and it’s very roomy. Separate living room and bedroom. Pics to come shortly. Viking offered a 1:30p walking tour of Basel; so we decided to participate to fend off the jet lag. It was Saturday; so the town was hopping 🙂. The guide was very Knowledgable and highlighted the many museums in Basel as well as several stops of historical significance. We ended with a 20 minute ‘break’ and of course we opted for a Kronenbourg beer in the sunshine. Our group gathering to review the ship rules and schedule began at 6:30p; then dinner at 7p. They had an option of a complete Swiss meal (salad; veal and potato stew and a tart= fabulous) or you could opt for something more traditional; like salmon or pasta. Excellent wine selection with the Silver Spirits package- perfect Provence Rose and hubby had a French red wine. We ended the meal with a selection of cheeses and fruit and a 20 year Port. Day 2: Breisach, Germany The captain said we went thru four locks last night- we slept like rocks and woke up on Breisach. Such a beautiful little town with St Stephens Minster towering over the City. The morning ‘included’ tour was a trip to the Black Forest by bus and when they said it was 90 mins each day and a total of four hours gone, we decided to have a morning to ourselves exploring the town. It’s Sunday; so very quiet as the town comes awake. Cobblestone streets, a bakery (oh my, stop and have the Krispie- basically a pretzel roll- yum!) and a coffee and people watch. Climb the steps up to St Stephens, the view is amazing and it’s very peaceful. There are benches and quite a few places to relax. There is also a water closet available here (look for the WC sign) by the main entrance to the church. There are many shops here to browse, it’s sunday so we cannot enjoy, but if another day; I would be shopping for a bit! Let me know if there are questions. All photos will be posted to www.gotravellife.com at conclusion of our trip as well as we do a bit of posting on Instagram and Facebook. Enjoy!!!
  15. You are going to have an amazing time! Once we started sailing in the Haven, we haven't looked back, although we are booked on an MSC "Yacht Club" trip over the holiday, so will be doing some comparing. I have always been sensitive to the times my kids will behave in restaurants, and we did plenty of room service as well so as not to cause disruption to others while traveling. My youngest was especially loud 😉 Our last trip on Getaway was over the holiday; details and pictures here: https://gotravellife.com/2018/01/03/about-us/ I have pictures of the Haven restaurant menus, as well as other specialty restaurants. We have always had extra attention from the butler, whether it's specific snacks you want brought (for some reason my daughter settled on Potato chips one trip,and they left chips EVERY day for her!), or asking to have your own pitcher of ice tea in the fridge (which they did for us when we asked). They really do work hard to spoil you silly. The Haven bar is just down the hall (really), so we had no issue having one of pop down to pick up whatever we wanted to drink, and with the UBP, made the decision to have the French Martini all the easier. Hopefully this is helpful!
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