21 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
Viking have some beautiful ships. Well designed with a furnished by IKEA feeling. We'd travelled on Viking Sea previously and felt that as the line was new it needed some bedding down but that we ought to give it another chance. ... Read More
Viking have some beautiful ships. Well designed with a furnished by IKEA feeling. We'd travelled on Viking Sea previously and felt that as the line was new it needed some bedding down but that we ought to give it another chance. Little had changed. Viking pitches itself at the same customers as Azamara and Oceania so needs to stand comparison with them. The ship is larger (930 rather than 694 pax) and has a wonderful feeling of light and spaciousness in the public areas with many places to sit and read. While I can understand the World Cafe buffet being laid out like a hotel coffee shop, disappointingly The Restaurant feels much the same. It was always difficult to find an empty table in the buffet. One of the problems with inclusive tours is that most people opt for them and tend to eat at the same time. The range of dishes in the buffet was less than its two competitors. Service in the restaurant was patchy. The food was an improvement on our previous Viking cruise but still not as good as its competitors. If the itinerary had been better designed we wouldn't have had to pass through immigration in Japan twice. On one occasion it took two hours resulting in the tours running late. The quality of the tours matched what one would expect for "inclusive". Many tours returned at the same time and boarding the ship was not helped by opening only the one bag scanner. Customers should not be expected to queue on the gangway in heavy rain. A larger entrance foyer would have overcome this. To sum up, lovely ship but the customer experience still needs working on. Read Less
32 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
Just returned from a Cruise on the Orion from Hong Kong to Tokyo chosen mostly for the destinations. We wanted to travel to Japan and given the fact that Japan is EXPENSIVE, this seemed like a good choice as the ports visited were on our ... Read More
Just returned from a Cruise on the Orion from Hong Kong to Tokyo chosen mostly for the destinations. We wanted to travel to Japan and given the fact that Japan is EXPENSIVE, this seemed like a good choice as the ports visited were on our bucket list and meals and accommodation were paid for. Unfortunately unbeknown to us , and our fault it was Golden week in Japan, a 10 day holiday period as well as the crowning of a new emperor. Every place was unbelievably crowded, and on occasion difficult to walk due to the crowds at temples and other places of interest. We have been on many cruises in the luxury category on smaller ships which is our preference. We are not Brand loyal as we enjoy trying different things in life. Given this, it was difficult for us to reconcile the fact that Viking Ocean was voted #1 in many categories. We actually realised why this is the case, as many of our fellow passengers, were on the fourth of fifth Viking Cruise, and had never tried anything else to compare. The liked the Viking new ships and felt comfortable as they knew exactly what to expect. I call it "the Holiday Inn" syndrome. There are so many better cruise lines in this category. I would rate Viking 4th or 5th. in every Category. I might add that the ships are lovely and most of the staff "willing and pleasant" but need more training. Our cabin located at the rear (Deluxe Veranda) was quite comfortable with a larger balcony and the bathroom is excellent. Best shower that I have had on a Cruise ship, ony to be beaten by those that have a Bath and a shower. I like to shower and my wife prefers to bath. The Best bathroom ever is the Spa Suite on the Azamara ships. A tad more expensive, but worth it. We dis not have a great choice of cabins, even though we booked it 2 years ahead and only and a choice of 4 cabins as everything else was booked.. Our cabin was on deck 5 below the infinity pool and was plagued by noise coming from the Infinity pool pump, located across the hall in a service room. We didn't get one night of uninterrupted sleep due to this intermittent pump cycling every 10 minutes or so. Surely Viking have heard of sound insulation!!! We complained to no avail, and on the 9th night they offered to move us to a cabin on deck 3, which we rejected as we were leaving the ship for a 21/2 day trip to Kyoto and rejoining up the coast in Shimizu. I did learn something though - many passengers book and pay the $100 deposit as soon as the cruises are published and then drop out at the 120 day point where they have to empty their wallets. So many people we spoke to, booked at 120 days or less and had a greater choice of cabin. The food was very good at Manfredi's and mediocre/acceptable elsewhere, except for the pool grill. Always a great choice of items so it was easy to find something acceptable, but certainly not the quality of Seabourne or Crystal, and even the special restaurants on Oceana were a cut above those on the Orion. We have actually had our finest meals at the Chef's Table on Azamara. $$$ but well worth it. Entertainment was also mediocre as were the included tours. I am 72, but found our fellow cruisers (most of the same age group) to be a little beyond it. They booked for tours which required a a higher level of exertion (noted in the brochures), only to complain when they got to the destination. They also couldn't figure out which channel to use on the VOX, even though it was always the same # as the bus they were assigned too. And frustration with the questions they asked of the guides even after the guide had already addressed the issue. Perhaps they were hard of hearing! I paid for a couple of additional tours with a US $ credit card, only to find that Viking charged the card with additional foreign exchange charges.I am Canadian and booked in Canada. Also did not get a statement at the end of the Cruise as is customary and found that I was charged for items that were not shown on the cruise account on the monitor in our cabin, even though I disputed these with Guest Services, who had agreed to deduct those charges. Still trying to get resolution with Viking. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
We have cruised on numerous ocean cruises over the past ten years including Princess, Regent, Oceania, and National Geographic. Viking Ocean will now be our "go to" cruise line unless we are seeking an expedition cruise. ... Read More
We have cruised on numerous ocean cruises over the past ten years including Princess, Regent, Oceania, and National Geographic. Viking Ocean will now be our "go to" cruise line unless we are seeking an expedition cruise. Everyone's cruising style is different, but Viking is perfect for us. Our reasons include what they don't have, no children, no casino, no Vegas style shows, no butlers, and no formal nights, to what they do have - sleek, Scandinavian design with room for everyone, focus on educational lectures, focus on classical music, the most amazing spa and fitness center at sea, fabulous food with no charge speciality restaurants, and wine and beer with lunch and dinner. We had a penthouse veranda and it was wonderful. Maybe a bit more closet space would have been nice. The bathroom was our favorite ever with it's roomy shower and heated floor. I would chose the same cabin when we cruise with them again. As mentioned by others, Viking needs to work on their shore excursions. We were on a new itinerary so maybe that was part of the problem. They definitely need to invest in new listening devices. But overall, we have found our new favorite cruise line and can't wait to sail with Viking again. Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
Started with this 2-week cruise from Hong Kong to Tokyo, then a week in Japan on our own. We did a Viking River (Grand European) last year so wanted to try one of their ocean cruises. Loved the Orion. Beautifully designed public spaces ... Read More
Started with this 2-week cruise from Hong Kong to Tokyo, then a week in Japan on our own. We did a Viking River (Grand European) last year so wanted to try one of their ocean cruises. Loved the Orion. Beautifully designed public spaces without over the top, trying too hard of some of the other, bigger ships. True casual elegance. All very spacious, comfortable AND at the same time cozy. We liked this ship much better than the full size ships we have taken. Great space for passenger count. Sometimes felt almost empty. But not at meal times! Service was great. Except occasionally (again) not at meal times. A couple of "flubs" in main dining room when all passengers hit at once. Overall very good food and wine selection. Our two specialty restaurant meals were lovely. And buffet always a good alternative, fresh and appetizing, sometimes hard to find a seat though. Disappointed specialty restaurants and excursions so hard to book into beforehand. Because we were "only" DV category, things often sold out before we could book. Very frustrating. If we'd been regular veranda, even worse? Viking needs to adjust capacity or ...? Staff really did work hard to please. Pleasant, personable, and efficient. Appreciated enrichment and port talks before excursions. Learned lots. Some excursions were great. A few could be improved. I'd suggest more time AT points of interest, once bus gets you there. And info in description about travel/visit time ratio, (not everyone thinks to research maps.Google when selecting). Entertainment varied. Local dance group fantastic, musicians very good, some onboard singers excellent, others OK. But TURN DOWN the volume please!! Mics or control room? cranked up to excruciating levels sometimes. Didn't use spa but fitness suite exceeded expectations. Nice to keep up routines and offset some of those calories. Planetarium didn't do it for me. over hyped, with awkward viewing angle. And see more under cabin review about my "big" gripe: no pressure balance in shower. Read Less
30 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
I was attracted by the destinations and the hype surrounding Viking Ocean Cruises. The ship is beautifully equipped with all modern facilities. Like a beautiful woman until the true character is exposed. The Ship lacked Soul. ... Read More
I was attracted by the destinations and the hype surrounding Viking Ocean Cruises. The ship is beautifully equipped with all modern facilities. Like a beautiful woman until the true character is exposed. The Ship lacked Soul. Furnishings were like Ikea on steroids. There were few activities apart from some excellent speakers and an outstanding performance by 4 dancers and singers. appearing only 3 times in 15 days. Another evening a Kabuki dance by locals was fascinating. People just hung out in corners of the ship reading and relaxing. They were entertained by 2 violinists and at other times by a pianist. Some passengers looked like they had passed away. Nothing much else to do. Excursions were disappointing. The one we looked so forward to going on was cancelled due to low support and the others didn't flow particularly smoothly. Food was the redeeming feature. It was excellent. Service was friendly and almost efficient. Our cabin attendant was very good. Embarkation was smooth and well organised. It would appear that Viking may be growing too quickly since there was what appeared to be inefficient administration processes. On one of our excursions we were instructed in the Newsletter to present in the Theatre for re-direction to our Buses. We had to meet by 1.45pm. Some 50 passengers turned up. But at 2pm when our Bus was due to leave, no staff appeared. A passenger then rang Guest Services to see what was going on and was then told we were supposed to meet on the Pier. No one told us!!! Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
Hong Kong to Tokyo 16 days. This was are Second Viking cruise as previously sailed on V.Sea. We found Orion to be a better experience this time around. Orion did not seem so bland as Sea, certainly more pop of colour around the ship. ... Read More
Hong Kong to Tokyo 16 days. This was are Second Viking cruise as previously sailed on V.Sea. We found Orion to be a better experience this time around. Orion did not seem so bland as Sea, certainly more pop of colour around the ship. We had a Penthouse Verandah on Deck 5. The room was bright clean and well looked after by our cabin stewards who were very friendly and always had a smile on their faces. Always plenty of places to sit and relax on this ship, never felt crowded except for the World Cafe where at times it was just ridiculous trying to find a free table. There just didn’t seem to be sufficient staff to cope with clearing away dirty plates and resetting the tables. I also got rather annoyed watching one particular wait person chatting away to a couple of passengers for far too long while his colleagues were run off their feet. Food was OK, some really good dishes and then again some very average ones. Manfredi’s was OK just a different venue from the Restaurant, same for The Chef’s Table. Shore excursions were not over priced with one included excursion in each port. Bar prices I thought were reasonable and compare to what I would pay back home. Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: April 2019
We wanted to visit Japan and thought this Viking cruise best suited our requirements. We had used Viking several times before without any major problems.In the end wished we had used another company. Problems started on the first day ... Read More
We wanted to visit Japan and thought this Viking cruise best suited our requirements. We had used Viking several times before without any major problems.In the end wished we had used another company. Problems started on the first day when they delivered one of our cases to another cabin. Only found out when the fellow passenger delivered it to our cabin later in the day The staff I reported missing case to did not seemed bothered when I complained. Other problems experienced included : - being sent reminders several times to attend safety briefings when we actually attended and ship cards scanned. We had to point out they had a system problem and they eventually admitted several of the handheld scanners were out of order. Do not know what would have happened in a real emergency. -delivering our copy passports ( needed for Japan apparently) to wrong cabin. Not in envelopes so the fellow passenger could see all our details - fortunately do not think he was a money launderer. - wrong order for food at restaurant - but the staff seemed to blame me for the waiter inputting wrong information into their machine. - timing of leaving Hiroshima had to change by 6 hours to an earlier time - I think because the initial plan got timing of length of cruise to next port wrong but staff blamed issues at the port. - electronic information on app and TV screens said we were calling at Kiel ( Germany) not Keelung (Taiwan) - staff kept blaming IT staff at head office. - no diet Sprite ( or similar) available on this cruise -only diet coke which I do not drink. Drink menu caters to the alcohol drinkers and non drinkers and diabetics are second class customers .No real alternatives were offered. So basically kept to water . Beverage manager blamed problems with getting supplies.However he did not ask for suggestions of alternatives or come up with other ideas. No imagination! No wonder people put on weight on a cruise with so many high sugar drinks with no alternatives.. - very poor Wi-fi. Not a patch on Princess's latest offering. I would prefer to pay a little more rather than have an included rubbish service.We found people taking their laptops etc to be nearer to routers but not sure it made much difference. - the maintenance of some of the equipment on board fell short of what would be expected of a fairly new ship. One lift was out of order throughout the cruise, the 3D movie feature in the Explorers dome did not work, one coffee machine in the pool bar did not work , one passenger told us her air conditioning unit was leaking water, one laundry room was closed for part of the cruise putting pressure on the other laundry rooms. - the quality of waiting staff was very patchy. Sometimes waited ages to be served drinks, some staff were not happy and showed it and you felt they wanted to be elsewhere. - customer services staff not very interested in problems - one told me to take it up with head office and gave me a card with detail on and did not even try to refer me to her manager. So I e-mailed the London address and it was only then that customer services manager on board spoke to me and we ended up speaking most days about some problem or other. - attitude of Viking staff seems to be that they are always right and the customer is always in the wrong. This has been re-inforced by the response I got from customer services in UK after submitting an 8 page report. No offer of any gesture to try and keep me as a customer. Given the problems Viking have had recently with their ocean and river cruises I would have thought they would be trying harder. Our experience this time will mean that our future cruises will be with other companies. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
I chose Viking for a cruise around New Zealand ending at Sydney, Australia because I wanted the experience that Viking provided. Viking caters to adults, does not have a casino and includes a number of things in the price of the cruise ... Read More
I chose Viking for a cruise around New Zealand ending at Sydney, Australia because I wanted the experience that Viking provided. Viking caters to adults, does not have a casino and includes a number of things in the price of the cruise that are ala cartel on other cruise lines. Wi-fi, drinks with meals and one excursion in each port are all included. Unfortunately, the included excursions could not always be booked. There was some real confusion as to booking included excursions. In addition , many of the included excursions conflicted with other excursions or were simply not available. We were only able to actually book two "included " excursions. There were 7 port calls. Several of the other tours offered as alternative tours, for which Viking charged, were not of good quality. I did like a number of things about the cruise. First, Viking spends a reasonable amount of time in each port. Second, the staff is extremely helpful and nice. Service was excellent except in the dinning room on one or two occasions. Our cabin was also lovely. Viking is a very different experience from Princess and Norwegian. Much more upscale and not crowded. The enrichment lectures were also excellent. I am still trying to decide whether the extra money spent on the cruise with Viking was worth it. Princess has a similar cruise for about half the cost but it is a large ship. Overall, I am happy with the cruise. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
What’s Qnot on the Orion. Evertthing from a luxurious stateroom, great food, entertainment and activities. The staff go out of their way to insure every meal, activity and tour are top notch. The ship itself has every acommodation from ... Read More
What’s Qnot on the Orion. Evertthing from a luxurious stateroom, great food, entertainment and activities. The staff go out of their way to insure every meal, activity and tour are top notch. The ship itself has every acommodation from entertainment, shopping, exercise facilities, swimming, spa treatments, great food and spirits as well as a staff that finds no need to great. Your cabin is well equipped with fresh linens and towels on a daily basis. There is so much entertainment you will never be bored including lectures, movies, high tea, availability to an onboard library, a swimming pool, spa treatments, exercise equipment and a sun deck as well as a walking track. The staff will provide 24 hour room service. There are several specialty restaurants as well as the Buffett. The Buffett serves everything from soup To nuts. They even have gelatos. You’ll fell very comfortable with any of the Viking cruises. You will never e bored or hungry on Viking no matter what trip you take. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
We have sailed on Viking Ocean on three different occasions, and we love the ships. There is plenty of public space and a variety of music venues. The crew is very friendly and efficient. They knew our name at the second meal! We never had ... Read More
We have sailed on Viking Ocean on three different occasions, and we love the ships. There is plenty of public space and a variety of music venues. The crew is very friendly and efficient. They knew our name at the second meal! We never had to wait for a table at any of the dining venues. The food was very good as were the wines (we were on the Silver Spirits package). The spa and fitness center are great. I think the fitness center on Orion is larger than on previous ships. We also enjoyed walking the promenade deck. We like the relaxed atmosphere of Viking Cruises. It encourages interactions with fellow passengers. We met some fun people at trivia! The only disappointment on Orion was the Explorer Lounge bar. The drinks had odd ingredients-for instance lemon juice in the margarita. We didn’t find a cocktail we liked, but the desserts at Mamsens made up for it! Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
I had never been to Asia before or on Viking Ocean Cruise. Asia is interesting and well worth a trip. The Orion was an amazing ship, truly luxurious and beautiful. All the accommodations were excellent a lot of little extra touches; like ... Read More
I had never been to Asia before or on Viking Ocean Cruise. Asia is interesting and well worth a trip. The Orion was an amazing ship, truly luxurious and beautiful. All the accommodations were excellent a lot of little extra touches; like placement of electrical charging stations, throw blankets, couches. The food was four star and the specialty restaurants were a treat The crew were gracious and attentive. My only negative on the whole trip was the way scheduled tours were handled and notified. Very poorly organized and communication about included tours and optional tours was poor to totally wrong . My wife and I would go again in a minute. In fact we are scheduled for a tour in June. The reservations and communication with Viking was excellent. The Viking web site was very good providing necessary information. The visa expense was a surprise The worst part of the trip was the Airplane trip. Unbelievably rude and just incompetent. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
Pros: We chose Viking Ocean Cruises for their excellent rating and they did not disappoint. We chose the itinerary from Hong Kong to Bangkok due to the ability to really get to see that part of the world over the course of two weeks. Orion ... Read More
Pros: We chose Viking Ocean Cruises for their excellent rating and they did not disappoint. We chose the itinerary from Hong Kong to Bangkok due to the ability to really get to see that part of the world over the course of two weeks. Orion is a spectacular ship and the shore excursions provided us with an in-depth look at the real cities and real people. A perfect two weeks. Truly, everything was top notch. Rooms were spacious and beautiful and every single staff member was friendly and helpful. We felt very safe and taken care of on the excursions. Cons: Air travel. We used Viking Air to book the flights and mistakenly trusted their advice on connections and connection times. We flew from Newark, NJ to Beijing with a connecting flight to Hong Kong. Just as we feared, our incoming flight times were changed and the flight was late thus we missed the connection to Hong Kong. We were extremely tired and frustrated by the time we actually got on board the ship. Lesson learned. No connections unless absolutely necessary. And arrive 2 days before cruise departure! But would do a Viking Ocean Cruise again in a heartbeat. Read Less
10 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
We chose this cruise for the itinerary, not knowing that Haikou, China and Sihanoukville Cambodia would be terrible stopovers. Lost 2 full days at places no cruise ship should go to. The ship itself is fine (we sailed on the Viking Sea 2 ... Read More
We chose this cruise for the itinerary, not knowing that Haikou, China and Sihanoukville Cambodia would be terrible stopovers. Lost 2 full days at places no cruise ship should go to. The ship itself is fine (we sailed on the Viking Sea 2 years ago to Norway - a far better trip). The food at the speciality restaurants was very good, at the world café just average and very repetative. Pre cruise information from Viking was misleading, uninformed and as for the so-called "required" China visa, just plain untrue. There were couples who did not get a China visa, did not get off the ship (good move) and nothing happened. The included tours were for the most part drive bys and the paid tours over priced. If you insist on doing this cruise get a group together to do private tours. Our 6 private tours in Vietnam were wonderful and we saw and did much more for far less than the ship's paid tours. The Hong Kong and Bangkok half day included tours were good overviews. Viking is a step above Royal Carribean, Celebrity, Azama but not at the level of Regent Seven Seas, Seabourne, Silvers Seas, Oceania or Crystal. If we had known how awful Haikou and Sihanoukville were, we would have looked for a better itinerary on a more luxurious ship considering the cost. Many experienced ocean voyage travelers we met felt the same way and Viking lost quite a few prior passengers with this cruise, including us. Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: November 2018
We chose this particular cruise because on my bucket list was SE Asia...Everyone spoke so highly of Viking we took a chance. This particular trip included air fare, a bonus for us. Viking made the arrangements and as we started ... Read More
We chose this particular cruise because on my bucket list was SE Asia...Everyone spoke so highly of Viking we took a chance. This particular trip included air fare, a bonus for us. Viking made the arrangements and as we started to realize that we were losing two days of the trip (as of that time) we tried to change well ahead of the sail date. We were told it was too late unless we wanted to spend another $2000. That I could have done on my own. We get into port after having an extremely long flights to get to Hong Kong. The trip to the port got us on the ship about midnight. We had made an excursion for the next day. With jet lag, sleep was impossible so I was up all night and went on the excursion. BTW, if you are in a port more than one day...the so called included excursions are the same for all the days. Of course you can pay for another excursion. Trying to keep this as short as possible... The next night we went to our reserved Dine that had to be made way before we traveled. Our reservation was for 9:00 ...My boyfriend got a call at 8:15 if we had cancelled our reservation ..He said no and they told us they could take us earlier. This restaurant was supposed to highlight foods from the area visiting. That was so untrue. We were seated and immediately served the first couse. As an aside it was awful..We were served wine...Before we had an opportunity to "savor" the wine a second glass of a red was served, must breathe...We were so rushed through what was supposed to be fine dining experience, we actually asked them to slow down. They did not. They served dinner as if we were holding them up. Apparently we were as they started to clean up all the tables around us as we are trying to ascertain exactly what we were being served. I being very tired and frustrated started to cry and ran out. It was an experience...I give them that. I could go on forever, but every port was hours from towns that were not worth seeing and tours that were highly inflated in interest. We could not go to places we wanted to see as the drive time between the port distances and places of real interest would take more time to go and come than spend any time. Haikou and HaLong Bay were at best boring and out of range with travel to go to other places of interest. Of course these are our assessments, but reflect many of the other travelers we met. So on day three/four, I asked for the Viking guanantee as I could not make arrangements to get to where I wanted to go on the cruise. ...We spoke with General Manager who worked at finding us a way to take an excursion we found on Trip Advisor as opposed to another Viking tour. Of course he talked me out of taking the Viking Guanantee, knowing I would pay for my way as the guarantee spells out. I really could go on forever, but aside from losing two days of the actual trip, we also lost another day in Bangkok as the ship needed some repairs and we could not get back on in time to make our flights. Some of the tour guides went out of their way to make what was truly boring more enjoyable. I really could go on forever, but if you are not interested how the Chinese are making Sihanoukville, Cambodia into the next Macau for 2 days as they are exploiting the Cambodians...Do not take this trip...and I really could go on...and on...Oh one last thing, for those of us who needed to make flights they arranged a day room at the LeMeridan...and printed out the wrong address. We had to pay to make it to the right address..LeMeridian personel went out of their way to accoummodate us in Bangkok and for that we give them 5 Stars, LeMeridian that is! We had a total of 6 hours in Bankok...Also our trip was not 26 days..but theoretically..we spent a great deal of time going to no where places...I may not sit in the sun...So finding shaded areas was excruciating. I do have a letter of apology and/or disappointment from Viking. I will share that with them. Thanks for listening. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2018
This was our third Viking experience, previously a 15 day river and 15 day ocean. I guess I should start out by saying the the Viking ships are beautiful, well laid out it never feels congested. The cabin attendants are first class and ... Read More
This was our third Viking experience, previously a 15 day river and 15 day ocean. I guess I should start out by saying the the Viking ships are beautiful, well laid out it never feels congested. The cabin attendants are first class and the dining is excellent. Entertainment is limited but, we already new that. The singers and dancers on board did a very good job with what they were given. The cruises director and staff seemed to only work about half the time. Compared with our previous Viking cruise, the entertainment was almost non-existent. The guest services group ranged from very good to just another body filling up space. My wife and I flew into Hong Kong from LA two days early. it was a tough 15 HR flight and my wife experienced some issues. The Viking host at our hotel was very helpful but, it was evident that many staffers were not adequately trained to Viking standards. This would turn out to to be the overriding theme for the rest of our trip. Transportation to the Orion was uneventful and embarkation was smooth. Our luggage was delivered to our cabin within a half hour followed by the attendants. We enjoyed the ship for two days but upon arriving in Xiamen my wife was still not feeling well so we visited the medical center. Before I proceed, I just want to say that the doctor and med staff were caring, thorough and extremely professional. They had a doctor and two nurses with quite a lot of equipment. After much testing the doctor decided to send her to the hospital for further tests. We were advised to take it easy for the rest of the cruise. We cancelled our post cruise extension and were advised that we would need to file a claim with the trip insurance company(we are still working on that). Three days before disembarkation, we received the details for our four day extension for the first time(the one that we cancelled). It included baggage restrictions...we had four bags and each one was over sized according to their list. We also had medical equipment which was not allowed. For the morning flight returning to Beijing we had to leave our hotel in the early am. Bus rides and planes made up most of the time during the four day trip. The day before our final port my wife was feeling worse. We went to the med center and they kept her over night. The next morning she was transported to the hospital in Tianjin where she stayed for five days before flying back home. The reason for this long story is that the cruise had many high points and of course many lows. In the future, I would definitely travel with Viking again. I will always find out who the cruise director is before booking, and will not travel with this one. I will purchase travel insurance on my own and not use TripMate. If traveling to Asia I will fly, train, drive, book hotels on my own and hire my own guides. It is difficult to separate our personal problems with our feelings about THIS Viking cruise. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2018
We have cruised with HAL. Celebrity, Princess, RCL, Costa, MSC, Carnival. Azamara, and Oceana. This was our third Viking Cruise, second Viking Ocean Cruise. We had a very good experience on our previous Viking Ocean cruise, including the ... Read More
We have cruised with HAL. Celebrity, Princess, RCL, Costa, MSC, Carnival. Azamara, and Oceana. This was our third Viking Cruise, second Viking Ocean Cruise. We had a very good experience on our previous Viking Ocean cruise, including the quality of the excursions, so we were disappointed in the very poor quality of the excursions in China. Viking claims that China was not experienced in handling American visitors at most of their ports. However, when we booked a private tour with a reputable Chinese travel agency for the port for Beijing, we received excellent and knowledgeable service, were taken to a clean and high quality restaurant, had a guide who spoke good English and took care of us. The excursions that Viking provided were low quality, with make believe tour guides who could not speak English and who did not know what they were doing. The "restaurant" that we were taken to was a overcrowded "banquet hall" with dirty rest rooms that lacked soap and the food was not good. On our private tour in Beijing, the guide sat with us and made sure that people with special diet concerns got what they needed. With the Viking tour, my wife told the guide that she must have a vegetarian meal and she was assured by the guide that she would get that. What happened was that the guide totally disappeared for the whole meal. We tried to communicate with the wait staff but they did not understand English. Therefore, since the food was served family style with no explanation of what we were getting, my wife could only have tea for her lunch. Certainly not a 5 star experience. The included tours were far from being a luxury experience from a luxury ship. They were quite miserable, especially on the 6 hour round trip on a bus to the great wall. The guide barely spoke and we were left to stare out the window with no narration. When we arrived at the wall we asked if the guide was going to accompany us to the wall to provide some guidance or narration. Her answer was that she had been there before and that she had no interest in seeing it again and that we were on our own to see it. Is that what the Viking excursion department considers to be a guided tour? Since there were a number of days at sea, entertainment is important. Viking decided to have 4 singers and no dancers on this ship Viking decided to schedule only 2 shows with this limited staff which worked out to one major show per week. Some nights just a movie was shown as the "entertainment". Again, not a 5 star experience. The ship is beautiful and the food is good, especially in the specialty restaurants. The historians on board gave high quality lectures. On a 14 day cruise, Viking should provide better excursions and more entertainment. Read Less
Viking Orion Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 5.0 4.6
Dining 5.0 4.3
Entertainment 4.0 4.0
Public Rooms 5.0 4.8
Fitness Recreation 5.0 4.4
Family N/A 4.4
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.8
Enrichment 5.0 4.2
Service 4.5 4.5
Value For Money 5.0 4.0

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