Home > Compare River Cruise Companies > Avalon River Cruises vs Viking River Cruises

Avalon River Cruises vs Viking River Cruises

Compare the travel styles, pricing, destinations and popularity of Avalon River Cruises and Viking River Cruises.

The Low Down

Avalon River Cruises Not as well known locally as APT or Scenic, Avalon Waterways have nevertheless been cruising the rivers of Europe and Asia since 2004. Featuring modern luxury ships, with floor-to-ceiling sliding glass doors, our clients love Avalon, and some of their river itineraries are our biggest sellers. Avalon don't usually include Fly Offers, so you'll need to book flights separately, but consequently their cruise prices are cheaper than the other luxury Operators and they offer some great Earlybird discounts. Part of the Globus Family group of Brands, means you can secure further discounts the next time you decide to travel by coach with either Globus or Cosmos.
Viking River Cruises Cruising down the rivers of Europe you are sure to pass a Viking Longship on your travels. Viking boasts the most extensive fleet of river cruises vessels in Europe, and while their core market is the US, there are many clients from Australia that choose to cruise with them each year. In 2017 Viking launched their range of mid-sized ocean cruises - with just 930 guests this gives their ships greater maneuverability, allowing them to dock where the mega-liners cannot. Viking do not offer NZD pricing, so if you're a Kiwi wanting jump onboard then you'll need to pay in AUD or USD.

Stats

No. of Trips
134
No. of Departures
1,509
Avg. Trip Length
11 Days
Avg. Price Per Day
$423
Fleet Size
18 Ships
Known For
Panorama Suites
Ship Styles River Cruises
Regions Explored AsiaEurope
No. of Trips
48
No. of Departures
3,945
Avg. Trip Length
11 Days
Avg. Price Per Day
$545
Fleet Size
64 Ships
Known For
Scandinavian Design
Regions Explored AsiaEuropeMississippiNile

In Their Own Words We asked the travel companies themselves why you should travel with them

Avalon River Cruises
One of our favourite sayings that describes Avalon Waterways is ‘the possibilities are as wide open as the views’. From Europe to the Galapagos and Asia, you can cruise in relaxed luxury with Avalon Waterways, with choices as unique as you. Avalon offers you a range of choices from excursions, dining options, activities that help you tailor your experience.

Just imagine gliding away down the world’s most spectacular rivers, all while enjoying a unique vantage point from your own private oasis. Our floor-to-ceiling panoramic windows in our suites blur the line between where the world ends, and your suite begins; allowing you to experience the world less seen from the comfort of your bed. This is river cruising from a unique point of view.
Viking River Cruises
A Viking river cruise is the discerning traveller’s dream. Whether you choose to visit Russia, Egypt, Asia or central Europe, our itineraries are designed to immerse you in the history and culture of each destination. With us, you could be exploring a local food market with our head chef one day and experiencing an exclusive behind-the-scenes tour of a world-famous museum the next.

Our state-of-the-art ships take you right into the heart of each destination, and you won’t find any kids or ‘nickel and diming’ on board. In fact, our fares include everything you need - from meals, beverages and Wi-Fi to a culturally enriching shore excursion at every port of call. This unique combination of features has become affectionately known as ‘the Viking difference’.

Viking has 70 award-winning river ships sailing all over the world, and we can’t wait to welcome you on board to discover the Viking difference for yourself.

Recent Reviews

Romantic Rhine river cruise     3 , QLD, Australia, Oct 2019
Absolutely brilliant, the cabins were spacious with plenty of storage space to unpack. The staff were amazing, the food was excellent. There were onshore activities that you could participate in or you could just sit back and relax on board. Would recommend to anyone.
Relaxing but limited cruising time     0 , WA, Australia, Oct 2019
Unfortunately for us, we were not able to board the Suite Ship on day 3 as per itinerary due to the unsuitable water level. We were transported by coach from Dijon to Lyon to board the Suite Ship which was docked till day 6. Hence, we missed out on a lot of cruising. When we did cruise, it was in the evening. The extra we paid for the cabin with balcony ...read more was wasted. In the day time we could only see the river bank or another ship docked next to ours from the balcony. We were, however, compensated with one free optional tour in Lyon. We did make good of our time by enjoying the land tours (free and optional ones), food and company of fellow cruisers. Overall, the trip was relaxing and enjoyable.
Lovely Romantic Rhine Cruise     2 , WA, Australia, Oct 2019
We were so lucky with the weather, being so late in the season, the water levels were kind to us. We really enjoyed the cruise, the food was amazing.
Such a lovely way to travel     1 , NSW, Australia, Oct 2019
Travelling the Rhine with Avalon as a single provides the best of everything. Great accommodation, ease of travel, lovely accommodation, lots of interesting included tours and above all, a great opportunity to meet like minded travellers.
Moselle & Rhine Cruise     1 , QLD, Australia, Oct 2019
Exceptional cruise, well looked after, room, excursions, meals and staff excellent. Probably would go in a warmer time of year next trip. Met many new friends, atmosphere provided by staff and entertainer was very pleasant, looking forward to our next trip.
Great tour     0 , NSW, Australia, Sep 2019
Easy booking online, lovely crew, interesting places, and the food was great. Don’t arrive in Budapest too early as days off the ship were 3 prior to embarkation.
River Cruise in Russia     7 , QLD, Australia, Sep 2019
We have completed many coach tours and independent travel in Europe and the United States. Viking's Waterways of the Tsars was our first River Cruise - so it was a new country as well as a new travel style! There were 192 passengers on our trip, the majority from US and many seasoned cruisers! We had selected the "cheaper" window style cabin rather ...read more that a verandah cabin - it was quite spacious, provided plenty of storage and accommodated adequate river views when underway. We spent most of our on board time in scenic common areas. There were often 3-5 boats berthed alongside each other at river ports and it was often necessary to traverse several of these to access our boat, Akun. September was "cool to cold" with beautiful Autumn coloured leaves in gardens and forests; skies were a little grey and the tourist season was drawing to a close... I would hate to be a visitor at its peak! We enjoyed having the same comfortable bed and the superb quality meals (small buffet or table service for Breakfast and Lunch; a la carte for dinner with choices from Local Specialties (this was a great way to sample traditional Russian foods) or Classic menu items. We immersed ourselves in the varied programs provided by Viking - there are no casinos or "stage shows" on board... and we did not miss them! The organisation was very efficient and professional; the staff were warm, friendly and helpful. We travelled in the Moscow to St Petersburg direction and in retrospect I think this was the preferable direction - we had booked two extra nights, through Viking, in hotels both in Moscow and St Petersburg. It was great to have those extra nights especially in St Petersburg where the accommodation was very central and allowed lots of opportunities to explore independently. We weren't as confident and adventurous at the start of the trip! I hadn't expected the Viking river berths in both cities (3 nights at each) to be situated in such outer locations. Fortunately, the company offers many Included Tours in the program. We also selected several Optional tours. On a "free day" we travelled independently from the Moscow river berth to view Victory Park (the Great Patriotic War 1941-1945 Museum). We would recommend this if you have an interest in these tragic years of Russian History - the Viking program, as the name of the tour would indicate tends to focus more on the Tsarist history. We have visited many European cities and St Petersburg would now have to be our favourite city. Be warned that the application for a Russian Visa is a time consuming exercise and can be costly. After obtaining the required "Invitation Letter" from Viking we were able to complete and submit our Visa application to the Russian Consulate online. Our passports were returned to us 20 days later. Our Viking booking included flights with Emirates as well as transfers to and from the airport, a stress free exercise.
Fantastic river cruise!     1 , NSW , Australia, Sep 2019
Viking never disappoints! This was a really interesting journey with excellent included excursions. It was a nice mix of people on the ship from different parts of the world. The food of course was of very high quality and the staff were lovely. Would highly recommend this river cruise.
Did not meet expectations.     1 , VIC, Australia, Sep 2019
I will be contacting Viking directly to voice my concerns as this trip did not meet expectations. The ship repair for change of generator at the start of our journey in Lyon was a concern which dampened our enthusiasm. The quality of wine offered in the the Silver Spirit package was considerably below expectations and some of the better champagnes were ...read more out of stock mid trip. The included excursions were padded out and not to the standard experienced on our previous cruise. Very disappointing. Please feel free to forward this to Viking - it would be appreciated.
Viking river cruise     2 , QLD, Australia, Aug 2019
Many thanks to Juliet (who has since left!) and Jodie for organising our holiday. All dealings with Global Journeys were excellent and I have recommended your services to many others. Whilst we enjoyed our river cruise with Viking, and it was reasonably priced, it wasn’t quite what we expected. Firstly, it wasn’t as relaxing as we thought it would be, ...read more as the included tours left around 8.30am most mornings, which meant getting ready and having breakfast quite early in order to board the coach on time. Secondly, the walking tours were painfully slow so quite frustrating for those of us who are quite fit, even though they broke the groups into “classic” and “leisurely”. The city stays at both ends of the cruise were okay, but it did mean long days travelling in the coach to get to the destinations i.e. from Paris to the ship via Luxembourg then from the ship to Prague. The included tours were pleasant (apart from the snail pace!) but the optionals were rather overpriced in my opinion so we didn’t do any. The ship itself was quite nice. Not luxurious, but tastefully decorated and our water level cabin was adequate for our needs. We had envisaged we wouldn’t be spending much time in there and we didn’t. We were travelling with my brother and his wife and we were the only Australians on board with predominantly Americans which we found a bit loud and demanding! One man actually apologised to us for his “fellow countrymen’s behaviour”. The tour director was lovely with a wonderful sense of humour and the service onboard was excellent. The meals and included drinks were great although the portion sizes were way too big. We did write on our review sheet that perhaps they should offer a smaller sizing for those of us who don’t usually eat that much as it seemed a waste not to eat it so we did at the start, but towards the end just couldn’t as our waistlines were expanding too much! If we were to do another river cruise we would probably look at going with a company with more Australians, New Zealanders & Brits as the clientele...
Russian Surprise     0 , SA , Australia, Aug 2019
The booking procedure was seamless from selecting our holiday to the receipt of our travel documents. The airfares were organised by Viking Cruises as part of the package we chose. The major problem being the inability to pick our own seats on the plane. The Waterways to the Tsars tour was well thought out and provided an extensive look into the ...read more past and present life of the Russian people. The local guides provided well thought out information, although we became a little tired of the Romanovs by the end of the cruise. The on board staff were exemplary going about their tasks with a smile on their faces and were always helpful. A tremendous little touch was the gift of chocolates and a personal note from our cabin steward on the last day. The meals were OK and the ability to eat local food was a good touch. The only downside as far as the cruise was concerned was, free soft drink and alcohol was limited to meal times only and the local red wine was almost undrinkable. I was too tight to buy wine from the wine list. The major downside happened on our way home. The plane from Moscow was an hour late leaving and we missed our connecting flight from Frankfurt to Singapore even though the plane was still in the terminal and the ground staff knew we were coming. This lead to extremely basic accommodation and meals and resulted in us having to halve our stay in Singapore and was a significant reason for our jetlag when we came home. All in all it was a good experience that could have been great if the air component had been better. I have grave doubts if I would ever fly with Lufthansa again.
A wonderful relaxing holiday!     0 , QLD, Australia, Aug 2019
Our first river cruise ever and it didn't disappoint! We had a French balcony room which gave us a lovely view of the river and the ship was lovely as were all the staff. The trips into the ports along the way were well organised and very enjoyable with lots to see. Food on board was very nice and the silver drinks package was well worth the cost as ...read more we got to try lots of different wines and cocktails we wouldn't normally have ordered. All in all a thoroughly enjoyable cruise. Thank you Global Journeys for making it possible!

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