Viking Venus is the sixth ocean cruise ship built by Viking, and while it follows the exact same formula as the vessels that came before it, the design remains as smart and innovative as it did when it debuted in 2015. The 930-passenger ship is adults only.
Viking Venus is built for comfort, no matter what the climate. In cooler ports such as Scandinavia, the ship exudes hygge with its cozy bars and lounges, complete with faux fur pelt blankets; and the steam rooms, saunas and faux fireplace of the LivNordic Spa included in the fare. And in warmer areas of the world, the infinity pool at the back of the ship joins the main pool as a haven for sun worshippers, where the Aquavit Terrace servers not only bring you drinks from the open air bar, you get coffee granitas and cool towels delivered to your lounger.
Viking does not call its ships "luxury" but the smart inclusions that you find on Viking Venus, coupled with intelligent service and the ship's amenities, create a comfortable experience that can compete with cruise lines that embrace the title. (And the extensive health protocols, which include daily COVID-19 saliva tests processed by the ship's onboard lab -- a first at sea -- only add to that; Viking's Chairman and CEO Tor Hagen notes, rightfully, that feeling safe while traveling is a luxury in 2021).
We already mentioned the spa, which we consider one of the best at sea. The tea in the Wintergarden, too, is a must. The World Cafe buffet boasts fresh sushi and seafood every night. The Viking Bar on Deck 1 offers excellent specialty coffees and pastries every morning.
Cabins are beautifully designed in cool Scandi-chic and are full of thoughtful touches like USB ports by the bed and a pop-up mirror in the desk so you can do your makeup; all come with balconies; and all bathrooms have heated floors and toiletries that you want to use (rather than generic ones).
Viking prides itself on its attention to enrichment, and you'll have plenty of opportunities to learn on Viking Venus. A resident historian, as well as a guest lecturer, join every cruise. Shore excursions are generally focused more on history than lighter pursuits; when you see culinary, wine or active tours, sign up fast. Don't be surprised to find a simulcast of an opera or classical music from Edvard Munch on the evening program (although there's usually at least one Beatles or Abba show per cruise too).
If there's one aspect that Viking needs to watch, it's making sure that this lean toward the high brow mirrors the interests of its demographic, as the generations change. The line sets its appeal to travelers age 55 and up; on our sailing, we'd put the average age higher, around 70 or so. Yet the Torshavn nightclub was full every night, with younger Boomers and older Gen Xers eager to listen to rock music and dance. The ship's free Wi-Fi is so good that people yet to retire can keep in touch with the office; we met several entrepreneurs in their 60s who were dipping in and out of work during the trip.
All in all, though, Viking Venus gives the PBS crowd exactly what they want, and then some.
Most dining venues, including two specialty restaurants and room service
Beer, wine and soft drinks at lunch and dinner
Specialty coffees, teas and bottled water
Entertainment and enrichment lectures
At least one complimentary shore excursion in every port
Access to the LivNordic Thermal Suite and fitness center
Other shore excursions
Alcoholic spirits and wine and beer outside of meals
Sign Up for Price Drop Alerts
Get Viking Venus price drops
250,000+ people have entered their email