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14 Night Europe Cruise from Bergen

14 Night Europe Cruise from Bergen

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    Shetland Islands
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    Invergordon (Inverness)
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    Duart Castle
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    Greenwich (England)
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    Greenwich (England)

Viking Jupiter

Viking Jupiter - Viking Ocean Cruises


Excellent dining, cabins, spa and enrichment on a gorgeous ship.


Quiet atmosphere and highbrow entertainment might not work for all.

Bottom Line

An adult-focused ship that's perfect for the PBS crowd.

Cruise Reviews

Sail Date: July 2019
After returning home with a cold and tired from jet lag, I spent two days thinking about and writing this review. My gosh, it turned out to be 13 pages! So here goes, I will put it online in pieces since it is so long. In my defense, it ... Read More
After returning home with a cold and tired from jet lag, I spent two days thinking about and writing this review. My gosh, it turned out to be 13 pages! So here goes, I will put it online in pieces since it is so long. In my defense, it was an almost 4 week trip, with a pre-cruise stop. Review of Viking Jupiter UK cruise and pre-cruise Zurich trip July/August 2019 We booked a trip on the Viking Jupiter, going around the UK, beginning in Greenwich, London, UK and ending in Bergen, Norway. We used Viking air, which made it very easy. We upgraded to business, and also added a destination with their program. I like that I can pick my exact flights that I want and even pick my seats. This way, it is possible to have the times that I want, and also the least number of stops, or even nonstop direct. We flew to Zurich, Switzerland for our first stop. We have flown over, and once stopped in Montreux on Lake Geneva for lunch driving through to France. This was our first time spending a few days in Switzerland. We stayed at the Hotel Widder, which is a real gem, in a perfect downtown location, and dates back to the 12th century. This is a 5 star boutique hotel. We had a very lovely spacious room overlooking their garden. The blend of old and new is beautiful. The architect spent years perfecting this combination and it truly shows. There is an awesome bar with a superb mixologist, and outdoor garden seating and dining. Breakfast is served in a charming café with indoor and outdoor seating. We would highly recommend this hotel for anyone traveling to Zurich. The service was impeccable, and we thoroughly enjoyed our stay. Just so happened, that the Iron Man race was held while we were there. Even closed streets did not impact us at all, and we got to cheer and watch some of the runners. We visited a small art museum, the Kunsthaus Zurich. I was surprised at the wonderful work that I so enjoyed. The largest collection of Munch outside of Norway, many Giacometti, and Monet, Picasso, Chagall, Kandinsky and Brancusi. A Henry Moore, Cezanne, Van Gogh, Matisse, a section on Old Masters, and I could go on. Suffice it to say a must do while in Zurich, lovely café outside the front door with a large Rodin “Gates of Hell” to admire while drinking your coffee. Walking around the downtown, along the river Limatt and down to Lake Zurich, we also visited the Grossmunster and Fraumunster churches. The latter with astounding Chagall windows, no photos were allowed. The original building from 853AD was an abbey for aristocratic women. The former was the starting point of the Reformation in the first half of the 16th century in Zurich. Our first day trip with a private car service was up to Mount Pilatus and the city of Lucerne. We took the cog wheel train up to the top of the Mount, about 7000 feet. It was a cloudy day and we had nice views until some fog rolled in and we couldn’t even see the gondola to go down. It quickly rolled out and some nice gentlemen serenaded us with yodeling as we waited to go back to the bottom. We saw lots of cows and heard their bells as we went up the train. The views are just like a postcard. Next, we headed over to Lucerne, on the beautiful lake. We walked the covered bridge (Kapellbrucke) spanning the River Reuss, built circa 1365, and admired the paintings from the 17th century. It also has an octagonal water tower which predates the bridge. It is the oldest surviving truss bridge in the world, with strutted and triangulated trusses of moderate span with piled trestles. We also made a quick stop to see the Lion Monument, a rock relief from 1820 to commemorate the Swiss Guards massacred in 1792 during the French Revolution. Our next day trip we did on our own, taking an easy train ride to see the RheinFalls. Here we took the rock tour boat ride going out to a rock at the base of the largest falls in Europe, 75 feet high and 490 feet across. We climbed to the top for spectacular views with spray in our faces. We then took another boat across the river to the castle side for our train ride back. Our dining adventures in Zurich included a lovely dinner at the Michelin 2 star restaurant Pavillon . Their Head Sommelier, Marc Almert, received Best Sommelier in the World at the March 2019 ceremony in Antwerp by the Association de la Sommellerie Internationale. The restaurant received their second star in May 2019 honoring their chef, Laurent Eperon. The swiss chef, Daniel Humm (of 11 Madison Park fame in NYC), spent several years training here. The Pavillon is round, with views out to Lake Zurich and stunning flower arrangements. Needless to say, it was an awesome experience, which we thoroughly enjoyed. We also had a lovely meal on the outdoor terrace of the Storchen Hotel with views of the River Limmat. This venerable hotel is mentioned in Zurich tax records as early as 1357. It is believed a pair of rare black storks nested on it’s roof, and that is the legend of it’s name. This was a delightful city, and a perfect way to ease into our trip and get over our jet lag. Then, we were off to London, an easy hop away on British Air, where we arrived at the Hotel Beaumont, which is also a 5 star, luxury boutique hotel located in Mayfair. Inspired by the 1920’s, it is an Art Deco building on a quiet garden square, and steps from Mayfair, St James and the West End and only a few blocks from Hyde Park. Since we have been in London a few times, we had a different list of what to see and do, than we would have had on a first trip. Of course, we booked theater tickets, and enjoyed the Tina Turner musical, with great music. We had an early pre-theater dinner at the fabulous Eneko Basque Kitchen and Bar just steps away from the theater. The chef, Eneko Atxa, has a three star Michelin restaurant, Azurmendi, in Spain, one of the world’s top 50 restaurants. It won the Westholme Highest Climber Award in 2019, a previous winner was Blue Hill at Stone Barns for example. Great selection of tapas style foods, our server helped us to order, and everything was just delicious and service outstanding as well. If you believe in global warming or not, we hit a 100 degree day in London! This was unexpected, and we rearranged our schedule. The British Library is in a new building, with real cold a/c. Many other places say they have a/c, but not up to our standards, or what we are used to. Since we gave up our trip to Salisbury, due to the heat, we still got to see the Magna Carta. Also, Shakespeare’s first folio, illuminated manuscripts, maps, music; like an original Beatle lyric. The Diamond Sutra, the world’s earliest dated printed book; a Gutenberg bible, original manuscript of “Alice’s Adventures Underground”, Beowulf manuscript, Dame Anne McLaren notebook – pioneer of in vitro fertilization; a letter from Charles Darwin, Captain Scott’s South Pole diary, letter from Ada Lovelace to Charles Babbage, letter from code breaker Alan Turing, and so much more. King George III library is at the center of the building, with books and other printed material from the mid 15th century. This turned out to be an unexpected treat and kept us cool on the hottest of days. We spent an afternoon on a walking tour of the Inns of Court, and visited the Royal Courts of Justice, and the Templar Church, built in the 1180’s. Seven signatories of the Declaration of Independence and five to the Constitution, were members of the Middle Temple. We also went into Sir John Soane’s museum, which was his home, circa 1808. He was the architect of the Bank of England. How many people do you know with a sarcophagus in their basement? The home is described as one of the most complex, intricate, and ingenious series of interiors ever conceived. We did make a quick visit to the British Museum so I could see the Elgin marbles again. It was hot and crowded. Worse than a NYC subway at rush hour, we bailed. Tip, when there are long lines to get in, go around the back, most people don’t know there is another entrance, and no lines. On the recommendation of a colleague, we visited the Sky Garden. This is free, just need to sign up for a time slot. Fabulous views around London, especially the Tower of London, and Tower Bridge, and all along the Thames. Lots of places for a drink or a meal as well. We were lucky to have a clear day for great views, glad we stopped there! Then we decided to eat somewhere nearby, and lucked out to find Blacklock City down a stairway to a basement, in an old electricity substation on the grounds of London’s first meat market. Definitely order the “All in” for 2 people, a compilation of grilled beef, pork and lamb, with sides and grilled flatbread, lots of cool side sauces to boot. Great bar too! Our final dinner in London was at Berner’s Tavern, on the recommendation of our daughter and SIL. Michelin starred chef, Jason Atherton is at the helm and we made these reservations a long time before we even left the US. It is inside the Edition hotel, a reinvention of a landmark building, and it is hip and innovative. The bar was packed with young elegant folk. Gorgeous room full of mirrors and artwork, and lovely mouldings and ceiling. We went with our servers recommendation for the starter of a traditional British pork pie and we were not disappointed. We both chose the lamb for dinner and it was delicious. Great ending for our sojourn in London. The next day we packed up and headed out to Greenwich to meet the Viking Jupiter. We boarded the ship and went to check out our cabin. Oh, la di da! (to quote from Diane Keaton in Manhattan) The Explorer Suite was just awesome. We think it is about the same square footage as our apartment in NYC. The bathroom is to die for, and so spacious for a cruise ship. There are double sinks, and a large shower room, with a tub and expansive walk in shower with great water pressure. Think we could fit half a dozen people in it for a party. The bedroom is large as well, with full floor to ceiling windows out the front of the ship, and below the bridge, so we have the same view. Then, the living space has a desk area, a nice round table with four chairs, perfect for those early morning breakfasts before a long tour day, and a couch and two chairs with a coffee table. We appreciated the small fridge with snacks and our preferred beverages kept everyday, including water, and a daily fruit bowl. Two large flat screen TV’s also in the cabin. There are expansive windows on two sides. The veranda has two lounge chairs and a table and chairs. Windows in front keep out the wind and the deck overhead makes for shade and no rain. The only problem was the floor was always flooded after a rain, something must be wrong with the drain design. Our exceptional housekeeper cleaned it on her hands and knees with towels and a bucket so we could sit out there one afternoon. If this had not been such a port intensive trip, that would have become a problem. This was a truly wonderful space for a two week journey. We could easily see staying here for an around the world cruise and being very comfortable. The rest of the ship totally lives up to any and all hype. It is elegant and well designed. The spaces really feel like you are on a private and luxurious yacht. There was never a feeling of being crowded, and you could always find a place to sit and have a coffee, or read, or do a puzzle, or play cards, etc. The thought and care that went into decorating the ship truly shows, and I enjoyed all the artwork and information on the pieces. The best place for a latte, cappuccino or expresso was on deck 1, with a real deal machine. They did make them up on deck 7 at the World Cafe, but not the same. The bars and bartenders were all great, and after a few days they remembered your name and your drink! This reminded us of Crystal cruise service. The spa is awesome. We made our own second sea day while we had only a half day tendered stop at Ullapool in the Highlands. When we first got there one other person was in the hot tub, but she soon left and we had it all to ourselves. So, hot tub, steam room, cold snow room, hot tub, you get the idea. I chickened out, no bucket of cold water over my head. The dressing rooms also had a sauna and cold plunge pool, as well as showers. I had both a massage one day, and a facial another day. Great technicians and I enjoyed them both. I also had a manicure and hair blowouts. Competent and nice staff. Indulge when you are there, so worth it. There is a large pool with a retractable roof. We never went in, but saw a few people enjoying. There is also an infinity pool at the back. Being a part time Floridian with a pool and hot tub, waterfall in our backyard I rarely go in the pool on a ship. It was never crowded. Also, no problem finding a lounge chair. The Wintergarden was lovely, and we went one day to check out the high tea which is served everyday between 4 and 5. I am not a fan of cucumber sandwiches, but everything was presented beautifully and elegantly, and loved the tea. We did have our Cruise Critic Meet and Mingle in the Wintergarten. There were canapés and drinks. Many high level staff were there to greet us and chat. Unfortunately, only about half of those signed up came. To be fair, the captain had just announced that we were headed into a front and it might be rough seas. That may have kept some people away. Since we were a small group, we were invited to use the private dining room at the Manfredi Italian Restaurant, and a group of about 10 or 12 of us enjoyed a lovely dinner with pleasant conversation and got to know each other a little better. Thank you Viking for treating our cruise critic group so well. Another superb aspect of the ship is a planetarium on the second level of the Explorer Lounge. We saw all three of the shows, and two were 3D. Lots of fun and so unexpected on a cruise ship. Remember to sit as far to the back as you can for best viewing and no crick in your neck. On to the theater and the entertainment. The four singers were young and enthusiastic, with lots of energy. High powered shows with lots of costume changes. There was a Beatles show, perfect before Liverpool, a combo 50’s 60’s 70’s show and an ABBA show. We missed the comedian/magician on his first show, and caught the last half of the second show. He was fun and the audience really appreciated him. The assistant cruise director proved that Elvis is still coming back, and was in the room. He did an awesome job and it was very entertaining. The Viking band is good and although I missed their show they were awesome backup and played at the Torshavn in the late evenings. We only made it once, this was so port intensive and we had long days and we were tired. We also enjoyed the other two singers although we missed some of their performances. The string duo was elegant and classy, and we always enjoyed their playing. The same for the pianist. So much of the time they seemed to be playing to an empty room, which was sad, but that was later in the evening, and again, port intensive with long days, so I think many passengers retired early. Now, for the biggest entertainment surprise, was the cruise director, Heather. OMG, does this woman have pipes!!! She is a mezzo soprano, and I would be willing to listen to her every evening. She sang some favorites that Andrea Boccelli sings, like Nessun Dorma and Con Te Partiro (duet he made famous with Sarah Brightman) She is enormously talented and brings it up a notch. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2019
My wife and I are in our late 60's and still quite active and like to travel with friends. This will be our second Ocean cruise and we have done two other Viking River Cruises. I like the cruise idea since you pack and unpack only ... Read More
My wife and I are in our late 60's and still quite active and like to travel with friends. This will be our second Ocean cruise and we have done two other Viking River Cruises. I like the cruise idea since you pack and unpack only once and you travel at night to a new port. On this cruise we were able to see the diversity in the different countries in the British Isles and go to many places where we would probably not go to, all of which were interesting to us. Usually I would have extended the trip on the front end in London, because it is such an amazing city, but we had been there for a week at Christmas with our daughter and had seen a lot of the sights. We did fly in early Sunday and had a full day, although a bit tired to explore the city. We are pretty good getting around ourselves and booked the inside Buckingham Palace and garden tour at 12:15. We LOVED getting to see inside the Palace and the grounds. Definitely try to do that if you go. I will now try to summarize the different parts of the cruise. The Jupiter was stunning. It was just like our first boat with probably very minor tweeks for improvement that we would not even notice. There was a great diversity of places to be on the boat and be a quiet or active as you want. The boat was big, but not too big. It never seemed crowded to me. The Spa area was very well done with a nice changing areaa and indoor pool with a very cool Nordic experience cold room onboard. Their was also a pool in a large atrium area that have plenty of seats near the windows on the outside. Finally there was a great small infinity pool and hot tub on the aft on level 7. Our room was a deluxe veranda which was fine for us. The bed was very comfortable and a king size bed. I am 6'4" and slept well. The bathroom was a good size but crowded for 2 people. We loved our veranda but honestly did not use it much. The Crew----We found the crew on the Jupiter excellent and very hardworking. From the General Manager to all areas of operation- we thought the crew was outstanding. We were able to interact with many crew members and the one theme that came out was that they loved Viking better than others they had been on. The crew was very happy. We have been to nice resorts like Sea Island and found the level of service on par with that experience. Food-We found the food very good to excellent . I thought the best food was at Manfredis (the Italian option) but that is also my favorite food. When you get your first opportunity go ahead and book reservations at either this restaurant or the Chef's Table, both of which was good. The Dining Room option was great also and usually had a wide variety of meal options. Since we ate at different areas in the dining room, we did not have the same server every night. We usually ate at the buffet for breakfast which had GREAT fresh fruit, about any breakfast option you could imagine, and omelet stations. Bottom line-The food ranges from good to excellent. You will not go hungry. Oh, I almost forgot, Mamsen's was a grill option on level 7 toward the pool area. They have great grill options and salads which were delicious. Entertainment-We found this area to be good to excellent. The four young singers were quite good and gave a variety of performances whcih we loved. There were also several times when local talent was brought in which was fun. The band on the ship was EXCELLENT and were the male and female vocalists. They performed both in the theater as back up to the singers and by themselves in Torshavn, a small lounge . We found the music excellent, but do not expect a carnival type atmosphere on this boat. Speakers- The speakers were good not great, but still very imformative. We have had better speakers on other boats, but thought they were good and discussed some tough topics like BREXIT and the Ireland-Northern Island issue. Cruise Director-Heather. I saved the best for last. WE have been on 5 other cruises and Heather was the best BY FAR cruise director we have ever experienced. She was a great speaker, funny, on topic and talented. In a previous life she was an opera singer and had to put together a show at the last minute (5 PM for a 9:00 pm show) due to a sore throat of one of the singers. Her performance was outstanding!!! But, I loved just her daily talks and her general interaction. She had the ability to make mundane things interesting. Excursions--We found the excursions to be good and gave a lot of options. Since we booked this trip very late-in June, we could not sign early, but found that most of tours opened uo that we wanted. The only negative is getting on and off buses and is a process which they handled quite well. I would give the tour leaders high marks in each area!! We usually did the included tour and then did things on our own at the other parts of the day. I did talk to other that did some of the options and they all seemed to like them. One tip is when you are in Invergorton and you play golf, there is a Top Ten golf course in the WORLD about 30 minutes away called Royal Dornoch. You can book you own times and but you will need a morning time, as you must be back on the boat by 4:30. I did this on my own and rented a car from Ken's for the day. Amazing course -it is my favorite course ever and I have played all the Open courses. Finally, on the Bergen stop I booked the Norway in a Nutshell trip. It is a series of trains, buses and ships which shows you fiords and beautiful country. It is about 10 hours but well worth it. There is no hand holding or person, just tickets but it works quite well if you can get around and feel comfortable travelling on your own. We loved the trip and I guess the only negative was trying to book a future trip. We met with the future trip person and just did not enjoy the experience. I liked the option, just not the experience and we chose not to book. In summary, Viking ships, crew and experiences are great!!! we plan to come back in the future. One final note- if both you and your wife drink, the drink option is a good deal for part of your trip. We did not do it, but some of our friends did and loved it. Also, since we were travelling just with us, it allowed us to meet some amazing new friends we hope to see in the future! Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
This was a fantastic vacation. We picked this cruise because of the itinerary. We visited all of the countries in the United Kingdom and finished in Bergen, Norway. We always felt so comfortable on board and welcomed by the Viking ... Read More
This was a fantastic vacation. We picked this cruise because of the itinerary. We visited all of the countries in the United Kingdom and finished in Bergen, Norway. We always felt so comfortable on board and welcomed by the Viking Staff. This was the longest cruise we have ever undertaken and we were more than pleased. Heather Clancy, the Cruise Director, and her crew were fantastic. They entertained us with at different show every night. Elvis even made an appearance on board. The Viking Band was great. Dancing under the stars provided a great memory. The Restaurants provide excellent food and service. The specialty restaurants are not to be missed. Wine and Beer were provided at all lunch and dinners at no charge. I would highly recommend the purchase of Silver Drink package (Upgrade). The Buffet is one the best I have experienced. Viking provided excellent exclusions at every port, at no charge. Shuttles were also provided at most ports, free of charge. At Edinburgh, because of windy weather conditions, the ship could not tender the passengers to Edinburgh. The Captain and crew decided to dock further upstream. The crew jumped through hoops to provide transportation (free) into the heart of the city. Other cruise lines, in port, just anchored and the passengers lost the opportunity to visit Edinburgh. All in all we had a great time and thank the Viking Crew and staff for a great vacation. Read Less
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