We chose Viking because of the advertised quality of the cruise and Viking exceeded our expectations in virtually every way. Our cabin was new, spacious and very comfortable. The variety of restaurants was outstanding and we were always ... Read More
We chose Viking because of the advertised quality of the cruise and Viking exceeded our expectations in virtually every way. Our cabin was new, spacious and very comfortable. The variety of restaurants was outstanding and we were always pleased with our meals. The only exception were the fried eggs at breakfast which were sometimes overdone.
We went on virtually every complimentary excursion and were able to go on several additional excursions. All were well conducted with knowledgeable tour guides. During our at sea days we took in the spa and the exercise room. The enrichment activities (seminars) centered on the Vikings and were one of the highlights of the trip. Another highlight was afternoon tea with snacks and live classical music.
Our cabin crew were excellent and were always able to accommodate our needs.
We enjoyed our cruise so much that we have already booked two more cruises in the near future. Read Less
We were impressed by the cleanliness of the ship itself. Everything was in order. The staff was very friendly. The convenience of having room service and having a wonderful staff that waited on you at the restaurants was great. We took ... Read More
We were impressed by the cleanliness of the ship itself. Everything was in order. The staff was very friendly. The convenience of having room service and having a wonderful staff that waited on you at the restaurants was great. We took the cruise just to relax and visit Europe,which in this trip we have not seen these countries. The tours on land were enjoyable for the most part. The guides were articulate and knowledgeable about the city or town they spoke about. Of course they had a strong accent,which is not their fault. We would've taking more tours but it was expensive. Maybe you can work on getting that lowered. We are senior citizens and we value and save for this trip. So if we could have some kind of help in that way,it would be really appreciated. We definitely had a good time relaxing and enjoying the cruise. Good job Viking Cruises. We'll probably see you on a cruise to Egypt. Read Less
For our first ever cruise we wanted a relatively small ship with comfort and good service. The Viking Sea surpassed our expectations in this regard.. The cabins were comfortable. The service from the friendly crew was of the ... Read More
For our first ever cruise we wanted a relatively small ship with comfort and good service. The Viking Sea surpassed our expectations in this regard.. The cabins were comfortable. The service from the friendly crew was of the highest standards and the ship was spotless. Hygiene was treated very seriously with disinfectant dispensers dotted around the ship. Security was tight with baggage searches when coming on board and personal identity cards being used and checked when entering and exiting the ship. The food in the restaurants was of a high standard with something for everyone. The menus covered dishes from all over the world with the desserts especially delicate and delightful. Entertainment was probably not as uproarious as on some of the larger ships but there were good lectures, talks and shows. The Baltic Cruise provided access to some lovely cities like St Petersburg, Helsinki and Stockholm as well as the Eidfjord in Norway. The shore excursions were varied and well organised. We thoroughly enjoyed them. Our experience has given us food for thought about a future cruise. It will be hard to go past Viking. Read Less
We chose this cruise because we had been on a Viking River cruise and loved it so we wanted to experience the small ocean ship. We had been on several of the larger ships (Royal Caribbean, etc.) and wanted a smaller, more intimate ship. ... Read More
We chose this cruise because we had been on a Viking River cruise and loved it so we wanted to experience the small ocean ship. We had been on several of the larger ships (Royal Caribbean, etc.) and wanted a smaller, more intimate ship. The Viking Sea fit the bill. It was large enough to have many amenities including two specialty restaurants in addition to the main dining room, a full service spa, fitness center and theater but still felt intimate. The selection and quality of food in the restaurant was perhaps the best that we have ever experienced.The ship itself was beautiful, with an understated Scandinavian style that we loved. We appreciated the all inclusive aspect of the cruise, with at least one excursion at each port included as well as the beer and wine at lunch and dinner (and they weren't stingy with either!). The ports were all very interesting-we loved Copenhagen, Stockholm and St. Petersburg especially. The cruise was 15 days and we didn't want it to end. Looking forward to another for sure! Read Less
All of the following points made this cruise attractive ... Business class airfare was included, the size of the stateroom was appealing, the fact that there were only 900 people on board and that no one under the age of 16 was allowed and ... Read More
All of the following points made this cruise attractive ... Business class airfare was included, the size of the stateroom was appealing, the fact that there were only 900 people on board and that no one under the age of 16 was allowed and the voyage included countries that we hadn't visited before. And thankfully there was no casino. The food was varied and delicious and the service was impeccable. The king bed was very comfortable and the stateroom was PERFECT. The only issues we had (and these were minor) ... a)we couldn't reserve window seats in the restaurants even though we had purchased an expensive stateroom, b) the mini bar in the room didn't include fruit juices (we prefer non-carbonated drinks), c) we would have liked to have spent 2 days in Copenhagen (skipping Aalboorg) and 2 days in Stockholm (limiting St Petersburg to one day). All other ports were varied and interesting. Embarkation and disembarkation went smoothly except in St Petersburg where it took a long time to get off and on the ship due to Russian regulations (obviously out of the control of Viking). We were disappointed in the post-excursion to Iceland. We wasted 1/2 day waiting for our rooms to be ready when a tour of downtown Reykjavik would have been a good way to spend our time. In addition, the location of the Hilton was terrible requiring a trip via taxi (at $25 each way) to downtown and to other decent restaurants. The room at the Hilton was terrible ... our room had a huge POLE in the middle of the room which I invariably ran into during nighttime visits to the WC. There were no king beds available either ... we do not travel anywhere if a king bed is not available. Read Less
To start with, the 3-leg plane trip (JFK-Frankfurt-Oslo-Bergen) worked until we had less than an hour to collect luggage and go through the immigration process in Oslo. Having to change airlines at this point caused our luggage to be ... Read More
To start with, the 3-leg plane trip (JFK-Frankfurt-Oslo-Bergen) worked until we had less than an hour to collect luggage and go through the immigration process in Oslo. Having to change airlines at this point caused our luggage to be delayed by 36 hours to the ship although Viking did take full responsibility for its delivery directly to our stateroom. A more direct flight without changing airlines would have made the experience less stressful. Also, the quality of Icelandair Air and Reykjavik Airport were not of the highest standard usually associated with Viking. I would give it a rating of 1.
The Viking Sky is a beautiful new ship with lovely state rooms, friendly and courteous staff, two excellent upscale restaurants plus numerous other food venues and loads of relaxation areas. The only time we knew there were 900 or so other people on board was when we all gathered in the atrium area for special times with the captain. The organization for embarking and disembarking was non-eventful and always went efficiently, Various forms of live music entertainment were enjoyed in the theater, lounge and living room and also at the touch screen tables for games and other areas to play cards or provided board games.
Most of the included excursions were well worth it with the exception of Eidfjord which was a trip to the Hardangervidda Nature Center that included a panoramic movie but little else. In some ports, it was convenient to be able to return into the city to explore on own and return via the complimentary shuttle. The amount of walking each day was not excessive but at times challenging.
The entire experience from the cocktails on the menu (Brandy Alexander, Grasshopper, etc.) and the entertainment (Beatles and Mo-Town nights) were obviously geared to those of us born in the 1940's
I'll definitely go with Viking again! Read Less
My husband and I had looked forward to going to Europe for years but had not gotten around to it. This cruise offered two weeks aboard a fantastic ship visiting 8 European countries we had never seen at what we felt was a good price. ... Read More
My husband and I had looked forward to going to Europe for years but had not gotten around to it. This cruise offered two weeks aboard a fantastic ship visiting 8 European countries we had never seen at what we felt was a good price. Viking did a great job of organizing the trip from the initial airplane flight ( from Dulles) to the connecting flight to providing the transportation from the airplane to the ship and back, as well as setting up all the included excursions and the excursions we chose separately. The Viking Sky was a smaller more intimate ship than the larger cruise ships we had previously taken. There was probably about one-fourth the number of travelers as other cruise ships - but the accommodations and service were superior. Our cabin was larger than other cruise ship cabins and the bathroom had a wonderful feature - warm floors that were activated when you were in the cabin. Wow! That was really great! I believe that every stateroom had a balcony and ours provided a sensational view. The staff seem to know everyone's name and were exceptionally pleasant and helpful. There was an assortment of good food available in several venues. I especially loved the petite desserts - because I could get a variety on my plate without over indulging. Almost every evening, we went to a first rate on-board show. The shore excursions were terrific and highly educational. The tour guides were extraordinarily knowledgeable and would answer every question. The captain was a gracious and accessible man who seemed to know us all. For two retirees, this was an incredible experience. Read Less
My S.O. did extensive research on Cruise Critic to find the top-rated cruise after a disappointing one on Oceania. Viking was top with the newly launched ocean-going ships. We loved the sleek, clean lines of the public spaces and cabins. ... Read More
My S.O. did extensive research on Cruise Critic to find the top-rated cruise after a disappointing one on Oceania. Viking was top with the newly launched ocean-going ships. We loved the sleek, clean lines of the public spaces and cabins. Although our bathroom was too small, we managed by using it one at a time. The balcony was also tiny by comparison to some others we have had but we didn't have that much time to hang out there anyway and mostly used it for viewing coming into or leaving ports.
The food in the dining room was above our last cruise (mentioned by name above and very disappointing). We had 4 nights in the specialty restaurants, 2 in each, and and were pleasantly surprised to like the Italian one very much.
The convenient thing was the included land tours. In the past, I've had to do hours of research to set up our own tours since the ones offered by most cruise lines are expensive and involve large groups. We did have to do bus travel but it was super-well organized at each port. There was only one that we were disappointed in and ironically it was one that we paid extra to do.
The entertainment cast was excellent and amazing for their small size and put on some fantastic shows that had everyone we talked to in awe. Such talent!
As we almost always do, we made friends with certain staff and that is always a nice feeling. They were rewarded with tips for going the extra mile or because of their friendly nature.
We are signed up next for a 14 day Viking River Cruise and then another one on a ship, traveling through the Panama Canal. They have set the bar high and I hope we are as pleased with our future cruises as this introductory one. Read Less
We wanted to see this part of the world. Viking did a great job of doing this in comfort.and hassle free. We love the smaller ship. The excursions were very well organized and we did not have to stand in any lines. The cabin service ... Read More
We wanted to see this part of the world. Viking did a great job of doing this in comfort.and hassle free. We love the smaller ship. The excursions were very well organized and we did not have to stand in any lines. The cabin service was first class. we know what its like not to have up to par service. We have taken over twenty cruises on different cruise lines and would rank Viking at the top of the list when comes to cabin service. The food of course was fabulous. We do not eat a lot and usually found ourselves going to the buffet every night. The seafood buffet was awesome. I never got my creamed codfish but the crab made up for it. My travelling companion liked the afternoon tea and little sandwiches. That's a nice touch. We can't wait to go on our next Viking cruise in March 2018. Read Less
We choose this Cruise for several reasons. Size of ship. For us, smaller is good. - Mainly a Cruise with Seniors with common interests on board. - Visited ports especially the Fjords of Norway and also St. Petersburg, Russia, that ... Read More
We choose this Cruise for several reasons. Size of ship. For us, smaller is good. - Mainly a Cruise with Seniors with common interests on board. - Visited ports especially the Fjords of Norway and also St. Petersburg, Russia, that we have never visited before. - Ended in Stockholm where are Daughter and Family live.
We thought the Beverage Package cost excessive. $40.00 for the two of us, roughly $560.00 for the two weeks. We would never ever come close to drinking that much in a day. BUT, we could see someone buying that package and feeling an obligation to drink that much in a day. We assume this is a great profit maker but to us possibly encouraging excessive drinking the wrong kind of message to send.
Overall we were pleased with the Cruise, we would sail with Viking again. The one provision would be that we would be able to pick our room assignment from a list of available rooms. We never want to have that unpleasant experience again. (See Below) Read Less
We are experienced travelers, but have always flown to our destination and then set out to explore by car, train, bus or foot. Wanting to visit Scandinavia but leary of the huge cruise ships with casinos and all night action, we read up ... Read More
We are experienced travelers, but have always flown to our destination and then set out to explore by car, train, bus or foot. Wanting to visit Scandinavia but leary of the huge cruise ships with casinos and all night action, we read up on Viking and decided to try the Viking Homelands cruise which also included ports on the Baltic. We included a pre trip which started in Oslo and took us to Bergen via the Bergen RR. If you have a chance, take the Bergen RR, a 7 hour scenic trip across Norway, climbing into the mountains. The scenery is breathtaking. The transfers to and from plane to hotel to ship were seamless.
Embarkation was a breeze. What is loved about Viking was first and foremost the staff, so friendly and can't do enough for you. I'd no sooner sit down somewhere and staff would be there to ask if I needed anything. And there are so many places to sit and relax on the Sea. Sometimes you feel you are on a cruise with maybe a dozen people, rather than 900. The Explorer's Lounge at the bow of the ship is a lovely and quiet place to relax and watch the ship head in or out of port. The restaurants are all good, but we loved the World Cafe the best as it is buffet style and one can sample different foods, without having to try a full portion. (Loved the gelato station!). Wine and beer are free with meals and we found other drinks to be very reasonable. There is a walking/jogging track around the ship which we made good use of, and my husband used the gym and sauna every day. I enjoyed the sauna pool, especially after a long day of walking. We both had massages which were excellent, and I had a lovely manicure. We regret that we didn't get to see much entertainment (Don't miss Cruise Director Heather Kelley, she is fantastic!) as we were quite tired from our daily port tours. We will try and see more shows next time. (Must learn to pace ourselves better.) We were actually glad there was a sea day so that we could unwind and make more use of the ship's many amenities. There was a wide variety of port tours and we took advantage of almost all of the included ones and also many of the optional. We had no regrets on tours and I highly recommend them. Normally we tour on our own in cities, but we found that the local tour guides were so knowledgeable that we learned much more than we could on our own in such a short time frame. The included tours were usually an overview of the port's highlights by bus or on foot, so afterwards you could stay on and explore more or go on an optional tour to another area. Staff (including senior staff) were always on hand to see you off the ship each day and welcome you back with hot towels. It reinforced the feeling that the entire staff is aware of and responds to the guests' needs.
Highlights: Edvard Munch's The Scream in Oslo. The Bergen RR and later the view at the top of Bergen City by tram. Pulpit Rock cruise and views of the fiords. Gdansk and Tallin were surprisingly beautiful old world cities. Storks in their nests on chimneys in Poland. The Amber Room and Peterhoff fountains in St. Petersburg (booked 2 day tour independently through Alla Tours and saw everything! They we're wonderful!). The art museum in Skagen, Denmark and the canal tour of Copenhagen. The quaint tea shop in Porvoo, Finland. The beauty and cleanliness of Stockholm (take the hop on hop off boat) and the spectacular Vasa Museum (a must see)! We did not do the post trip Stockholm, but wish we did. You need at least 2 to 3 days to really see this lovely city. We were so pleased with our experience that we booked another Viking ocean cruise for next spring, and are set for our first Viking river cruise on the Rhine this fall. It's such a beautiful world, I hope I live long enough to see more of it! Read Less
This was our first "ocean" cruise with Viking (we previously did a river cruise). This company REALLY knows how to take care of their guests. They ship was just the right size and so beautiful. Our room had plenty of space and ... Read More
This was our first "ocean" cruise with Viking (we previously did a river cruise). This company REALLY knows how to take care of their guests. They ship was just the right size and so beautiful. Our room had plenty of space and they provided binoculars, umbrella, extra bedding when requested, free snacks and drinks...I could go on and on. We definitely will use them again. The included excursions were top notch. I believe we only paid for an extra excursion in St Petersburg. We loved the difference in the various ports...small, large urban, historic, party town, etc.
Some guests had a bit of a hard time with all the uneven cobblestone, so be forewarned about the older towns. We did a LOT of walking in the ports and had no issues (all four of us in late 50s early 60s).
We appreciated that we could watch all of the port talks in our cabin and did not have to attend in person. Read Less
Really hard to describe our experience because it was a two-week cruise, and so many experiences. In summary, our sailing experience was good, on-board Guest Services was excellent, pre-sail experience was way below expected, included ... Read More
Really hard to describe our experience because it was a two-week cruise, and so many experiences. In summary, our sailing experience was good, on-board Guest Services was excellent, pre-sail experience was way below expected, included shore excursions were mostly on a bus driving through town, very few stops, with a guide. Extra cost excursions were better, but with up to 44 people and expensive.
Good Friends told us about the cruise, and other friends had taken an ocean cruise to the Baltic, so we decided to do this one.
Prepping for the cruise, primarily the procedure for selecting shore excursions was really bad. We were in the least expensive cabin (very adequate, clean and a large sliding glass door to the small veranda, even heated bathroom floor). This made us the last to be eligible for shore excursions, and we could sign up beginning 12:00 AM Pacific time. We were in New England when our time came, which meant 3:00 AM Eastern time. We found many of the included excursions and several of the extras were already sold out. We called Viking Customer Service, and each of the customer reps gave us a different explanation about how we could work around that. One common thread among the reps was that more expensive cabins have better privileges, much like on aircraft where first class passengers have better accommodations. My response was that being on a ship for 14 days is more like a hotel, where these types of privileges are not in place. They obviously were not trained well enough to do their job.
Needless to say, these experiences really got us off to a negative start--first impressions are the ones that stick. If Viking would do a better job of giving us the details of how to work around the shore excursion selection process, we would have been much happier.
To top things off, we didn't actually get complete descriptions of the shore excursions until we received the complete set of paperwork, which was weeks after we were supposed to sign up.
To our surprise, in that paperwork was a "small-print" statement that they would automatically add $15 gratuity per day for each passenger to the invoice. And, unlike the special privileges that higher level cabins had, ALL cabins were the same. This showed up on our bill the last two days of the cruise. We were told that we could make adjustments to this, but there was nothing said about how we could do that, when it could be done, or how to tip specific individuals such as our cabin steward, chef, bartender, etc. We prefer all-included costs where there are no decisions to make.
One thing that we thought was a good idea was making dinner reservations at two of the specialty restaurants, Manfreddie's , and the Chef's Table, a daily five course meal prepared by a special staff. I must say that of the two, Manfreddie's is the better of the two. We would say that some of the food served buffet style in the World Cafe was substandard--good crispy bacon, though.
A workaround for shore excursions that we worked out before boarding was to hire non-Viking tours. We did this in Eidifjord, St. Petersburg, and Stockholm. All, particularly St. Petersburg worked out very well. In St. Petersburg, we hired a driver and tour guide for four of us. The cost of this was a bit more, but we covered a LOT of ground in two days. After talking to guests who used the Viking shore excursions, our two days is equivalent to five days of Viking shore excursions. this is probably because of the large groups getting on and off buses, waiting in lines, etc. We would do this again, and it is highly recommended if you want to see the whole of St. Petersburg.
Enough with the negative stuff.
The ship is brand new, in service only 6 months. High technology abounds on it, including free wi-fi throughout. However, the day before disembarking when we needed to check for our flights home, there was a huge overload of the system, and many of us did not get our boarding passes printed.
We found that the on-board personnel were great, willing to help, and always greeting us with a smile. Guest Services were easy to work with and readily solved one of our shore excursions problems.
The "Winter Garden" is the indoor/outdoor pool area and includes a grill and bar area. The glass roof of this area rolls back during sunny days and was a welcome break.
Outside at the stern is an infinity pool. Not covered, but it still had plenty of people using it even with Northern Baltic temperatures.
Entertainment was great. There is a very large theater where movies can be shown (we did not participate), also used for live music/dancing performances, and daily shore lectures and gathering place. Every evening an assortment of piano, guitar, and classical string/flute music wafts through the atrium in the center of the ship.
Bars are plentiful around the ship, but we only drank wine at meals. However, unless a guest pays extra for unlimited bar drinks, they are extra in some circumstances.
At the bow of the ship is the Explorer's lounge. This is a two level circular lounge area where it is easy to read, join friends, or just watch as the ship quietly moves forward. One more level up is an open air lounge area that is well-protected by glass walls from wind. We found that, even during colder days, it cold be comfortable.
Excellent, highly qualified enrichment spekers. Read Less
Wanted to explore the Scandinavian countries. This cruise fit the itinerary just perfect. The shore excursions were great and not to tiring. The crew/staff/services were outstanding. The cruise was turnkey, no casinos, no sales pitches, an ... Read More
Wanted to explore the Scandinavian countries. This cruise fit the itinerary just perfect. The shore excursions were great and not to tiring. The crew/staff/services were outstanding. The cruise was turnkey, no casinos, no sales pitches, an adult cruise. Food was outstanding. The chef and servers were five star every meal. Amenities, facilities, entertainment, can't say enough, the best. The ship Viking Sky was new and very well built. The cleanest ship that we've ever been on. Did not explore the port of Bergen, we arrived a day late. Flying is not fun anymore. When the Viking personnel received us at airport we were glad to see them and everything went great from then to the end of cruise. The high point was St. Petersburg, the Hermitage without waiting in line for hours and the behind the scenes. The tour of the Hermitage restoration facilities was amazing. To see the art of the greats and the painstaking restoration of beautiful works of art was a lasting memory. Read Less
I have Sailed on many Cruise Ships (14 times) before and found this Cruise one of the best I ever sailed.
We chose this ship because of its Itinerary ,it took us to places we have never been before.
Portugal the Isle of Jersey and ... Read More
I have Sailed on many Cruise Ships (14 times) before and found this Cruise one of the best I ever sailed.
We chose this ship because of its Itinerary ,it took us to places we have never been before.
Portugal the Isle of Jersey and the Passage thru the Kiel Canal in Germany .
After returning from the Berlin tour we were pleasantly surprised with the Welcome back by the ship’s Crew and an all-Male Choir .
The idea of all Inclusive attracted us , plus the fact that we never before Sailed on a Cruise ship this size.
We were pleasantly surprised about the comfort and coziness of this Ship and the Lectures held by Wing Commander William Simpson.
The Food and Wine was above our expectation in comparison to other cruise ships.
In Particular we enjoyed the Winter garden afternoon Tea, although we preferred the Fantastic Cappuccino in Place of the Tea.
My Wife had acquired a particular Taste for the Fantastic Macaroons.
The impeccable cleanliness of the whole Ship and Friendliness of the Crew was second to none.
We are presently planning a second Cruise with Viking , I am sure the service will be as good as one the first Cruise.
We can recommend Viking Cruises without hesitation. Read Less
We have been on all three of the Viking Ocean Cruise Ships and they are all beautiful and well planned. Our room was fantastic - the cabin service could not have been any better. Slight problem - our bathroom floor did not get warm - we ... Read More
We have been on all three of the Viking Ocean Cruise Ships and they are all beautiful and well planned. Our room was fantastic - the cabin service could not have been any better. Slight problem - our bathroom floor did not get warm - we had to call on this and the ship immediately fixed. Entertainment and activities was excellent - you had to get their early to get a seat - it is impossible to fit everyone in the auditorium. The ports and excursions were great and the choices were excellent - everyone should have been able to find something to satisfy their interest. Food was good but could use a little work - had to send back a dinner item and saw several others do the same - never saw this on the other ships.
As me - would we go again - YES and YES and YES - in fact my wife and I have already booked three (3) more Viking Ocean Cruises - two in 2018 and one in 2019. This should tell you how much we LOVE Viking Ocean Cruises. Read Less
We wanted to see an area that we had not visited. We also wanted to do the tour on a small ship. I do not like the confusion of the large ships. It was much easier for me to tour the ship since I am handicap and use a scooter to go most ... Read More
We wanted to see an area that we had not visited. We also wanted to do the tour on a small ship. I do not like the confusion of the large ships. It was much easier for me to tour the ship since I am handicap and use a scooter to go most places. We enjoyed the many port excursion and the lectures related to the ports. The only minor inconvenience was exiting and entering the ship with my scooter. However the crew was very helpful. We enjoyed our two days in Saint Petersburg Russia. Fortunately we toured the museum early in the day because it became very crowded and hectic later in the morning. The dining choices were great and the wait staff was great. We always found the restaurant areas with great accommodations. We often enjoyed the buffet areas. Our cabin staff was pleasant and very effiecient. The medical staff was great; unfortunately my wife became sick but was given drugs to correct the problem. Read Less
After 3 riverboat cruises on other cruise lines, we loved the Viking Star! It was a Beautiful ship and no area was ever crowded (loved that there were only 930 passengers). The crew was absolutely wonderful and went above and beyond in ... Read More
After 3 riverboat cruises on other cruise lines, we loved the Viking Star! It was a Beautiful ship and no area was ever crowded (loved that there were only 930 passengers). The crew was absolutely wonderful and went above and beyond in trying to make the passengers happy. The included tours were less than wonderful, but provided a good introduction to the port city. We enjoyed the food at the World Cafe a lot, and unlike crowded dining areas on river cruise ships, it was never too noisy to hear each other talking. I get motion sick very easily, but this ship was very smooth and we never even felt anything when it docked. The weather/waves on the North Sea were less than wonderful the first two days, but after that, there were absolutely no problems. I would love to go on another Viking ocean cruise as soon as possible! Read Less
Itinerary included both Norway &UK.which was just what we wanted. Lots of scenic cruising thru stunning landscapes. Cruise met all our expectations and more. Food was excellent with wonderful wait staff in dinning room and World ... Read More
Itinerary included both Norway &UK.which was just what we wanted. Lots of scenic cruising thru stunning landscapes. Cruise met all our expectations and more. Food was excellent with wonderful wait staff in dinning room and World cafe.Mamsens was a little hidden secret for breakfast.
Our cabin was very well planned out with comfy beds. Great design features especially the bathroom with heated floors.
Excursions,both included and optional worked for us-just the right length. We also did 3 Private tours so we could do more in our time ashore especially in Orkney,Tromso, and Edinburgh.
Embankment and disembarkment went very smoothly as usual.Suitcases were delivered promptly.We liked the feel of a small ship and the friendly atmosphere. Decor was Scandinavian with lots of small places to read. Play cards or just visit with new friends.
Would highly recommend this cruise to anyone wanting a relaxing cruise but with lots to see and do.Fjords, waterfalls, small fishing villages,tundra,wildlife,seafood and Sami people. Read Less
My wife wanted to see Norway, and I wanted to see Scotland; and we were both blown away with the natural beauty of both countries! There was not enough time to see and do everything, and that includes our time on the ship. Our ... Read More
My wife wanted to see Norway, and I wanted to see Scotland; and we were both blown away with the natural beauty of both countries! There was not enough time to see and do everything, and that includes our time on the ship. Our Penthouse Veranda was soenjoyable and well featured. We were on the Viking Star 1 1/2 years ago, but we were still in awe of all the amenities on the Sea. We just didn't have enough time in the days to completely enjoy all that the ship offered: the shows, the entertainment, the talks, the tea times, the pools and spa! Our son-in-law had said he had the best steak he had ever had; when we were on the Star. But, we now agree that the food was just spectacular in the specialty restaurants, the main dining restaurant and even with the buffet! We had escargot and outstanding seafood even in the buffet! We ate so well, that some nights we had to just eat appetizers or only the seafood in the buffet.
My wife also commented on how happy and courteous the staff were. She said she had counted a number of them singing to themselves. They sure made us feel at home andcomfortable whenever we met them around the ship.
Now for excursions and sights. I really appreciated Norway and Scotland for their breath-taking natural beauty; as well as for their countrymen. They were excited and appreciative for us to visit their countries and know about their history and current situations. We, as Americans, could learn a lot from them concerning their environment, use of sustainable energy resources, and how they care for their young families, mothers and children.
We met many fellow travelers on board, including a number from "down-under." We all talked, ate and shared our experiences over the 2 weeks; and this really contributed to a well memorable time! Read Less
We enjoyed our past Viking river cruise, and wanted to see Iceland and Norway. Ship and cabin met our expectations for comfort and cleanliness. Service staff was friendly beyond belief. Excursions were fun and informative, and well ... Read More
We enjoyed our past Viking river cruise, and wanted to see Iceland and Norway. Ship and cabin met our expectations for comfort and cleanliness. Service staff was friendly beyond belief. Excursions were fun and informative, and well coordinated to logistically move a lot of people in different directions around the same time. We had no idea that the scenery would be so fantastic. Because the ship stayed close to shore when possible, there was almost as much scenery as on a river cruise. Slowing the ship to explain waterfall and such was appreciated. Shuttles into town were great. NIghly entertainment great.
Two major complaints. One, on arriving in Iceland for precruise extension at 7 am, hotel rooms not available until afternoon. Sitting in the lobby not so fun, tho food was provided, necessary for my diabetic husband. Walking tour suggested, but after traveling for almost a day, it is too much to expect for senior citizens. Another tour company on another tour made sure rooms ready on arrival.
Two, transfer from Iceland to Bergen was two flights, taking us to Oslo. There was no Viking representative to indicate where to go, how to go thru customs again, reclaim and recheck bags. There was no signage to help. There were no written instructions to follow. Folks who didn't rely on Viking for air arrangements didn't have such problems. Read Less
A cruise to the midnight sun took us to many scenic destinations in Norway and included the Orkney and Shetland islands and Edinburgh, Scotland. The ship was exquisite not only because it was new but was furnished with quality items. There ... Read More
A cruise to the midnight sun took us to many scenic destinations in Norway and included the Orkney and Shetland islands and Edinburgh, Scotland. The ship was exquisite not only because it was new but was furnished with quality items. There was no difficulty in finding a relaxing spot to read even while at sea. Though the laundry machines were free, there was little difficulty in finding them available for use. The lectures was engaging and enlightening. The included tours generally sufficed for most ports so that extra cost trips were unnecessary. The crew were all courteous and provided prompt and attentive service. The quality of food and wine was upscale though you can purchase more expensive wines. From the café, to the buffet, the main dining and specialty dining the food was tastefully prepared using fresh ingredients.
Need I say more to get you interested in a Viking ocean cruise? Read Less
We have Norwegian ancestors, so sailing around Norway was something we had always wanted to do. The scenery was stunning, the service excellent. The shore excursions were good, but perhaps not as good as those we experienced on Viking ... Read More
We have Norwegian ancestors, so sailing around Norway was something we had always wanted to do. The scenery was stunning, the service excellent. The shore excursions were good, but perhaps not as good as those we experienced on Viking River cruises.
The speakers on board were excellent - all the way from the Viking history to British royalty. This is an area that Viking has really excelled at. In addition to the talks, most of the speakers made themselves available at other times for ad hoc discussions. I also saw many of them accompanying shore excursions.
This is not a casino and lavish entertainment cruise - although the entertainment is certainly decent. A small dance floor and a small band, plus singers and entertainers were present. Daily reviews of the area and ports were interesting.
Average age of passengers was probably about 70. No children were on the ship, and very few passengers under 50. Read Less
Chose this cruise because of prior experience with Viking and the desire to see and explore the ports and countries featured. The cruising part of the trip was excellent. Beautiful ship, great staff; delicious meals; very good ... Read More
Chose this cruise because of prior experience with Viking and the desire to see and explore the ports and countries featured. The cruising part of the trip was excellent. Beautiful ship, great staff; delicious meals; very good entertainment; comfortable and relaxing with a variety of activities to appeal to almost everyone.
However, the "exploring" part of the trip did not live up to our expectations. The included tours were OK and covered the highlights of each port, but there was never enough time to explore on our own, unlike our previous experience with a river cruise. If your included tour started a couple of hours after docking, there was not time to go ashore before and explore, and little time after. Also, in St. Petersburg, we didn't understand the need for a Russian visa if you want to explore on your own and not as part of a ship tour or with a licensed Russian tour. As a result, we had 2 days in St P, but only got off the ship for a total of about 7 hours over 2 days. There were plenty of optional tours available, but the cost put them outside our budget, although we did spring for the Hermitage tour and enjoyed it.
There were a couple of instances where a free shuttle service was provided between the ship and the downtown area, and this was well organized and much appreciated. However, in some ports there wasn't enough extra time for this.
Overall, if you enjoy the cruising experience and are satisfied with a glimpse at the cities along the way, then the 14 day Viking Homelands is excellent. If you want to explore, then be prepared to pay the extra for the optional tours, or, like us, you will be somewhat disappointed. Read Less
From the moment Viking met us at the airport to the moment they dropped us off, we felt like we were the most important couple on the ship, even though we had the least expensive cabin. The bartender remembered our names after the first ... Read More
From the moment Viking met us at the airport to the moment they dropped us off, we felt like we were the most important couple on the ship, even though we had the least expensive cabin. The bartender remembered our names after the first night as well as our preferences. The waiters remembered my food allergy. The disembarkation staff allowed us off the ship early when we had a personal shore excursion. The food at the Chef's Table (included in the fare) was out-of-this-world! The "buffet" at breakfast was cooked when ordered, not sitting on hot pans waiting for takers. Wine and beer were included at lunch and dinner, but mixed drinks and single malts and bourbons were very reasonable. There was NO nickel * diming, no sales pitches for stores or pop-up boutiques. We did purchase another cruise while onboard and saved over $1000 compared to the prices I had checked before sailing.
The entire voyage was relaxing yet intriguing. Ted Talks were always available on tv and in the theatres. There were 3 resident historians onboard who lectured every day - very, very interesting. Each ha his own area of expertise.
The port talks the night before the next port were not centered on where to shop. They were centered on the history and culture of the port. What food you might want to try, the not-to-be-missed sights and experiences and things the area was noted for were all discussed.
Disembarkation and embarkation at each port went very smoothly with no waiting in lines or standing on stairs in crowds. Water bottles were provided every time we left the ship.
The room steward was outstanding in anticipating our every wish and coming up with surporises of his own.l
The spa was the best of all the ships I have traveled, and the cost was incuded in the fare.
The Viking Ocean ships are not flashy. The decoration is peaceful and based on the history of a famous tapestry on the Sea. The library was the best - I found a terrific new release book I had been wanting to read and left one of my own. Afternoon tea was always fun the beautiful wintrgarden.
Above all, the ship never, ever felt crowded. There was always a seat to be found at the pool, in the game room, in the atrium or in the explorer's lounge.
It was the best ocean cruise we have ever done, and we've done about 20. Read Less