4 Auckland to Australia & New Zealand Viking Ocean Viking Orion Cruise Reviews

Overall i like the Viking ocean ships. Clean, crisp norweigian style. Food choices good. Room layout very good. But this review is about my view of the way Viking handled the itinerary debacle caused by the virus. We were merrily ... Read More
Overall i like the Viking ocean ships. Clean, crisp norweigian style. Food choices good. Room layout very good. But this review is about my view of the way Viking handled the itinerary debacle caused by the virus. We were merrily headed to Hobart Tasmania when the captain informed us early in the morning while at sea that we were headed on a beeline to the mainland of AUS to get into port there. It was obvious from the direction of the boat that Sydney was the intended port. NZ had just closed its ports and it was clear AUS would follow suit. We never made it to Sydney. AUS closed its ports before we got there. We were redirected to Melbourne. Due to an AUS exception to its port closure order we were able to disembark as long as we all headed to the airport for departure. To my knowledge nobody on board was ill before disembarkation. Overall I was impressed with Viking's offer for free flights home for everyone on board even if you did not arrange travel thru Viking. Coach of course. It probably took a huge effort to get flight's (re)arranged in the short time before disembarkation for those who did not do their own thing. My wife and I immediately redid our own arrangements so we could stay in business class. Viking provided transfers for everyone to the airport and allowed people to stay on the boat as long as possible before their flight. I found the guest assistance very adequate in helping us and other people figure out their new arrangements. I have to figure out what to do about upcoming Viking trips depending on how the virus thing is panning out but appreciate Viking's flexibility on reservations (vouchers for future travel and cancellations almost up to the time of departure). I may be wrong but I think they were first out of the block with the most flexibility. There are a few nits and nats I could describe but they are trivial compared to how things generally unfolded and were dealt with by Viking. I see reports of chaos on other ships. Some are still floating around out there looking for a port. God bless and help those people. Read Less
Sail Date March 2020
Viking is noted for being an above average cruise line. Unfortunately this particular cruise started out substandard for Viking. I made comments early on in our cruise and was really pleased with the quick feedback and attention to my ... Read More
Viking is noted for being an above average cruise line. Unfortunately this particular cruise started out substandard for Viking. I made comments early on in our cruise and was really pleased with the quick feedback and attention to my comments made by Viking staff. The staff on the ship were all exceptionally friendly and attentive. The food was very good-especially in Manfredi's-my favorite. Did not care for the Chef's table but that is more related to what was on the menu for the evenings I attended. The educational talks were excellent and it was great to be able to watch them on my own schedule, in my own cabin, on my own TV. The cabin was beautiful and comfortable with the best shower I have ever experienced (so much pressure). The amount of storage in the cabin was excellent--we did not even fill up all the drawers. The nightly entertainment was very good. The cruise director, Brian Rodriguiz was amazing--what a talent. For me I would have liked more options for shore excursions. I would have liked more hiking options-or other active excursions. I was disappointed in some of the included tours and found it unfair that on certain days I had to choose between included tours and optional tours rather than being able to do them both. This was due to scheduling overlap. This did not occur on the Viking River cruises we have taken. I was not happy with the arrival at the airport or the departure. This was disorganized. The post trip in Port Douglas was nice. The hotel was excellent. The ship is beautiful. I loved the itinerary and highly recommend it be added to everyone's bucket list. I do recommend Viking and the Orion is a beautiful ship. Love that no children are on Viking cruises. Love that everything is included on Viking cruises. Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
Our previous experience with Viking was the Midnight Sun. We were pleased with the quality of services and ship. We arrived 3 days early in New Zealand and stayed an extra 4 days in Sydney. Time allowed by Viking would not have done ... Read More
Our previous experience with Viking was the Midnight Sun. We were pleased with the quality of services and ship. We arrived 3 days early in New Zealand and stayed an extra 4 days in Sydney. Time allowed by Viking would not have done justice to these cities. We planned our own package with the help of our TA. We were very happy with the ports visited. Shore excursions need a little work - you almost have to book paid excursions to see what you want. Tours overlap so you must choose; you might take two if timing was better. Christchurch is still recovering from the earthquake. Many of their monuments will never be rebuilt. We appreciated seeing what they have accomplished. The tram ride and botanic gardens were very good. Even included a surprise tea in the trolley. We found all guides to be very friendly. Some were more informative than others. Tour times/departures were well organized. All were walk-off - no tenders! We especially enjoyed Napier (Art Deco-car ride) and Dunedin (Taieri Rail Trip). Our first trip to this area of the world. Would definitely consider again if it weren’t so far!! Viking should do a better job at getting detailed information to passengers BEFORE the online booking date. The online experience is tedious and requires that you print your own info. We did receive a detailed list, but too close to our departure. Tours should also include meals and snacks when offered. We had several tours that included a meal (large snack) ther we weren’t expecting. A tour that left at eleven a.m. required you to purchase a meal. Better if we know ahead what will be provided Room service was excellent. Juan Carlos deck 4 - did a great job. Moved the coffee machine to a higher cabinet as we don’t use the machine in the room. Dining room staff still seems to be learning their way. The automated ordering system seems to have some slip ups. Bar and lounge service was great. We are husband and wife traveling with 2 friends. Manfredi’s-dined there twice. Found the food to be good quality both times. Second service was a little sloppy. One in our party received his pasta as a separate course-the rest had theirs included with the main course. I think this is a problem with the way the menu appears on the ordering app. Chef’s Table-also dined there twice. Xiang and Asian Panorama. Both meals were good; wine pairings well-suited. Portions were not huge, but gave a good idea of flavors. Was a full meal. The Restaurant-we found a good selection of food. Meats were excellent. What is missing is any local seafood. Now that Viking is around the world, the need to offer seafood beyond the waters of Norway. Ship needs to fix the dinner in the second to the last night. Two shows plus the Captain’s Farwell meant that almost no one could eat in The Restaurant after the first show. World Cafe - we found a good variety of selections for each meal. Varied offerings for many cultures; you could always find something to eat. Nice to add in special grill offerings every few days - chicken schnitzel, lobster, etc. Back by the pool area. Entertainment /Activities - good variety in entertainment for us. Varied from night to night. Lectures available if you wanted and a good selection in your cabin if you missed a port talk. Sea day activities sufficient for us. There were 8-9 activities scheduled - we did expect Viking to be more in the quiet side. Embarkation/disembarkation-very smooth for us. Arrived 15 min. prior to scheduled time and were let right on. Less than 10 people waiting. Short wait in the ship-sipping champagne-and our room was ready. Luggage all delivered within 30 min. Same for leaving the ship. We were independent travelers. Had breakfast and left the ship by 8:30a.m. Taxis readily available and we were at our hotel in 20 minutes. Read Less
Sail Date January 2019
Overall I enjoyed our cruise on Viking Orion. My husband and I booked with Viking because we were tired of large ships with no private space and we didn't want to be nickled and dimed. We wanted an adult experience without casinos, ... Read More
Overall I enjoyed our cruise on Viking Orion. My husband and I booked with Viking because we were tired of large ships with no private space and we didn't want to be nickled and dimed. We wanted an adult experience without casinos, dress up nights or photos. We also chose Viking because we liked the itinerary, shore excursions were allegedly included and the ship spent longer in each port. We were also tired of fighting crowds on larger ships. Our stateroom was lovely and the service was excellent, except for some minor issues in the dining room. Two serious difficulties arose during the voyage. First, Viking eliminated a port call in New Zealand called Roatua. Viking did provide $500.00 in a ship board credit for both my husband and me as compensation. I used this credit to book shore excursions. There was a serious problem with booking the included shore excursions. The excursions could only be booked 65 days in advance of the cruise on line. However, the included cruises were immediately sold out. So, if you were in a lower category cabin, there was often no included excursion available. The optional excursions were far more interesting than the included ones. The included excursions often conflicted with the included ones. It was frustrating, especially since I had to book several private tours. Some of the included city tours were less than impressive. I did enjoy several of the excursions....notably the Gannet Safari, the Taleri Gorge Train Ride and the Bonorong Wildlife Sanctuary. I also enjoyed the resident historian, the shore talks and the enrichment activities on board. I found plenty to do on sea days. I would have liked extra time in Hobart and an extra day in Melbourne. The sail into Sydney Harbour was lovely. The entertainment on board was good. The cruise director was an Australian child star (now an adult) who did an excellent job. He did a terrific performance. The four singers on board did a credible job. I wasn't expecting the large Broadway shows performed on larger ships so I wasn't disappointed. I liked the free Wi-Fi, the included wine with dinner, not having to contend with noisy children, the enrichment activities and the lovely quiet spaces on the ship. I never felt crowded and I could always find a quiet place to read and relax. I didn't like the elimination of a port, slow service in the dining room or the issue with booking shore excursions. I felt that Viking engaged in false advertising with stating that a shore excursion was included I every port. For the reasons stated above, the included excursions could not be booked. I enjoyed the cruise but I am still trying to decide whether or not it was worth the additional amount of money that we spent above what we would have spent on Princess......I think we will likely book a Viking River Cruise but I am not sure about another ocean cruise. Again, I will have to use a cost benefit analysis......overall pleasant, upscale experience with helpful, friendly staff. Read Less
Sail Date January 2019
Viking Orion Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 5.0 4.7
Dining 5.0 4.4
Entertainment 4.0 4.1
Public Rooms 5.0 4.8
Fitness Recreation 5.0 4.4
Family N/A 4.4
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.9
Enrichment 5.0 4.3
Service 4.5 4.6
Value For Money 5.0 4.1

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