33 Hong Kong Viking Ocean Viking Orion Cruise Reviews

Overall this was a great cruise. We learned a lot about Asian culture in all of the ports. We were shocked at the pollution and wondered why Viking did not provide masks for those who wanted them as we went ashore. For the most part the ... Read More
Overall this was a great cruise. We learned a lot about Asian culture in all of the ports. We were shocked at the pollution and wondered why Viking did not provide masks for those who wanted them as we went ashore. For the most part the excursions, both included and those we paid for were enjoyable. We do think Viking could do a better job with the excursion descriptions. For instance, we thought we’d be able to get very to the Statue of Jesus at Vung Tau in Vietnam. However we could only see it from across the street. It was our most expensive and greatest disappointment. The cabin was very adequate and our stewards all over the ship were great. Some of the entertainment was good but we do think Viking could improve in this area. The lectures were very informative. Viking is not our ship of choice but overall we do enjoy the sailing. We will be on aRiver Cruise in late August to Germany, Austria and Hungary. We’ve never sailed on such a small ship so we are another adventure! We were particularly impressed with Brian Rodriguez, the cruise director. And his worship service on both Sundays was great. We saw him all over the ship and loved to just chat with him. He is a gem. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
We cruised from Hong Kong to Bangkok. The ship (Viking Orion) is fabulous, the ports are quite a mix, and the passengers are generally not very nice people. We enjoyed the ship, especially the Explorer's Dome and the gym/spa. ... Read More
We cruised from Hong Kong to Bangkok. The ship (Viking Orion) is fabulous, the ports are quite a mix, and the passengers are generally not very nice people. We enjoyed the ship, especially the Explorer's Dome and the gym/spa. The food and entertainment/ cultural series were mostly excellent. We especially enjoyed the Chef's Table, Manfredi's is also excellent. In this region of the world, many of the ports are far from the cities of interest, so most of the excursions involve bus trips with groups of people that are just too large, especially for the included tours. Also, many of the passengers are not physically fit enough to keep up with the large groups, and the tour guides were sometimes insensitive to this. Viking does not do a very good job of grouping people together based on physical ability or interests. I'm not talking about any kind of strenuous hiking or anything like that. These bus tours require sufficient mobility to climb onto and off the buses with some efficiency, and some walking through crowded places with a lot of hustle and bustle. Sometimes the only toilet was upstairs with no elevator, and some participants were unable to climb stairs. Needless to say, this created difficult situations.... Also, some of the passengers in the groups were quite inconsiderate of the rest in the group, not returning to meeting points on time, wandering off to shop while the tour guide is trying to explain the location's culture and history. While we did meet a some kind and interesting people on the ship and on excursions who were genuinely interested in learning about the cultures of SE Asia, many were just simply not very nice people at all. Very self-absorbed, often quite rude to others, and uninterested in the kind of cultural exchange experience that Viking tries to offer. They also were not very kind to their fellow shipmates who were physically not able to keep up with the tours. We did several tours through Viking that were extra, and those tended to be much better, albeit a bit spendy. The port of Sihanoukville in Cambodia is not much of a port. As you may know, Cambodia has a difficult history, and this part of Cambodia is trying to re-develop via investments from China. Simple infrastructure like trash disposal, sanitary sewers, modern roadways are lacking. I hope that the fact that Viking stops there is a way to provide some resources to assist in their development as a way to balance the Chinese investments. We highly recommend taking the overnight excursion to Phnom Penh. Yes, it looks expensive, but it was soooo much better than trying to explore Sihanoukville, which is not a very nice place. The thought of an included excursion in the kind of sad place that Sihanoukville is with the selfish and self-absorbed typical Viking passenger that we ran into is just not appealing to me. Also, Viking was clear about the trip to Phnom Penh being a physically demanding tour, and the passengers who participated in it were able to keep up. The tour guide was also fantastic, and the participants were interested in the cultural exchange, so this was an excellent experience. The port close to Bangkok was another real letdown, along with our excursion to Bangkok - we did the included tour, and it was especially bad. Lots of time on a bus, very limited time actually in Bangkok, and very inconsiderate fellow passengers who gave the poor tour guide a really hard time. The passengers should be ashamed of how they acted, and I was quite embarrassed for them. Of course, they were clueless about how they behaved. We signed up for the post-cruise extension to Angkor Wat and Siem Reap, and this was truly a highlight. Fantastic tour guide, excellent hotel in Siem Reap, group size was OK, and the participants could mostly keep up. For those that were unable physically, the tour guide was experienced enough to give them options that didn't interfere with those of us who were able to take full advantage of the excursion. In summary, we are going to wait about 10-15 years before we try another Viking Ocean cruise. Then we might better fit into the overall age demographics and physical abilities. Not sure what Viking can do about rude and inconsiderate passengers - I guess this is one of the downsides to doing a cruise. Overall, we had a nice trip, but this was the first time after doing multiple cruises on Viking and other cruise lines that we experienced so many unpleasant fellow passengers. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
I went on this trip to get a sense of SE Asia first hand. We have been on many Viking ocean and River cruises, so the ship, cuisine, level of service and accommodation and amenities were as usual -excellent. Our required VISA ... Read More
I went on this trip to get a sense of SE Asia first hand. We have been on many Viking ocean and River cruises, so the ship, cuisine, level of service and accommodation and amenities were as usual -excellent. Our required VISA expenses $350 per person for short stops in Vietnam and Cambodia were a unpleasant experience. We had to send in our passports to a third party and pray they came back before our trip. After 25 days of waiting- our passports and VISA documents came back. If you travel a lot, then that may be inconvenient. Our Viking Free Air package was a long haul from Dulles in Washington to Japan. From Japan to Hong Kong arriving on time 10PM. Traffic was very light at that time of night. a Excursions were available there, but we were too tired. The excursion staff helped us add TUK TUK (four person carts pulled by a motorcycle) in our Cambodian port city. Due to heavy construction everywhere, of Chinese owned Hotels and Casinos, in Sihanoukville my husband said 'it was like being in a paint shaker'... Our guides gave us a neck lanyard with an emergency number which made us thankful (or concerned) for our safety as we navigated the motorbike congested streets of central Saigon, Hanoi and Sihanoukville. The planetarium shows were very different and the at Sea Days a nice change from some long excursion days. The humidity in SE Asia did keep us more inclined to not use the balcony or main uncovered pool area. Check out the many longer excursions and overnight stays offered which seem well worth if , but may mean that you downsize your cabin . I find that local travel agents are not familiar with Asian cruise ports. Docking was in a less than scenic -container laden area. City center was at least one hour by bus. Smog and humidity made balcony use minimal. We love Viking and want to try Iceland or Med cruising again. SE Asia is probably not our first choice. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
We had taken several trips to Europe and felt that we wanted to experience the Asian culture for a change. The cruise allowed us that experience. The ship provided us with very comfortable living quarters while learning on the several ... Read More
We had taken several trips to Europe and felt that we wanted to experience the Asian culture for a change. The cruise allowed us that experience. The ship provided us with very comfortable living quarters while learning on the several shore excursions we took. We began in Hong Kong with a brief tour of our own and then took a provided tour which was an excellent overview of the city. The demonstrations were occurring during that time, but we were not exposed to any of it. The tour director did a good job of taking us to areas away from them. Our embarkation was seamless. The ship was docked in the center of Hong Kong and the bus took us directly from the airport to the ship with no problems. Our cabin was ready when we arrived and was just as we expected---clean and homey as it could be. The dining areas were quite nice. Manfredi's was our favorite restaurant, but the Restaurant was more than adequate. It provided a good mix of offerings each night. We were able to be seated with other couples most nights which allowed us time to meet people form other parts. Breakfast was always wonderful. They had plenty of variety and fresh offerings. We had been on another Viking cruise (the No. Europe). We felt that the entertainment on this one (Orion) was superior to the one in Europe. The quality was more professional . On this cruise we spent more time in the lectures than before. This allowed us to learn the culture even more. The free shore excursions gave a good overview of the city/area we stopped. We took one excursion---the water puppets---in Vietnam that we felt was a waste of time---too long of travel to get there for the value we received. But, most of the excursions were good. We took private excursions in Saigon and in Hoi An. The problem with the ports where we stopped was that they were far from the city. For example, in Saigon, we had to travel an hour to get to the city. We were there three days. I wish we could have gone to Chu Lai (near Da Nang), the area I served in when I was in the Army in Vietnam. But, it didn't seem plausible. The trip/stop at Sihanoukville Cambodia was somewhat of a low point in the Cambodian stop. We had fairly long drive and didn't see much when we finally got to our destination. It didn't seem well organized. I am thinking they could have arranged a better stop or tour for Cambodia. Fortunately, for us, we elected to do the extension to Angkor Wat after the cruise. This took us to Siem Reap for 3 days. It was an excellent experience in Cambodia. I think the trip could have included more time in Bangkok. In Bangkok, the ship docked 1-1.5 hours away from Bangkok.. We had just one day in Bangkok, and it seemed that much of it was taken up with travel to get there. I would recommend more time in Bangkok and less time in Cambodia. In all, we wanted to experience the Asian culture. We did. We had not been exposed to third-world countries like we did on this trip. It was very enlightening. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
We chose Viking Ocean Cruise for this trip because we previously cruised with them and trusted we would receive the same amazing cruise experience. Below is a summary of our overall experience: Ship and cabin: 5 stars! Beautiful ship ... Read More
We chose Viking Ocean Cruise for this trip because we previously cruised with them and trusted we would receive the same amazing cruise experience. Below is a summary of our overall experience: Ship and cabin: 5 stars! Beautiful ship and cabin. Our only complaint was having to endure the smoke at the Word Cafe Restaurant on our entire 2- weeks trip due to broken ventilation fans. Service: Five stars! Everything was perfect! Staff: Five stars! Friendly, respectful, professional. Entertainment: Excellent TV entertainment choices. We did not attend any of the live entertainment because we were always leaving early in the morning for our excursions. Ports and Excursions: 3 stars. Other than Hong Kong, the remaining ports were often industrial ports and so far away from the city/towns. That said, we spent a lot of hours in buses going to towns/excursion destinations. Also, excursions not worth the cost. We don’t know if vendors were charging Viking too much or the other way around. It’s important to note that the excursion staff were always friendly, respectful and very professional. Dining: 41/2 stars for specialty restaurant and Main dining room.. 4 stars at World Cafe. This buffet restaurant often served greasy and little variety for breakfast food. Dinners we’re much better selections and always had king crab legs and beautiful large shrimps. The pizza and soup stations were excellent!. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
Highly Recommend Anwar Wat in Siam Reap! This part of the trip was a four day post cruise land tour. Accommodations, excursions and guide were all excellent and highly recommend. Ship is beautiful and food was delicious at every one of ... Read More
Highly Recommend Anwar Wat in Siam Reap! This part of the trip was a four day post cruise land tour. Accommodations, excursions and guide were all excellent and highly recommend. Ship is beautiful and food was delicious at every one of the dining venues. The spa was clean and the snow grotto was a very “cool” experience! Entertainment shows in the main theater was what you’d expect on a cruise ship... nothing to write home about. However, the singing duo in the lounge and classical duo in the lobby were outstanding. Service staff get high grades for friendliness and attentive service. We really appreciated the excursion staff’s concern and response to one excursion that did not live up to expectations. Viking truly wants you to feel that every detail or concern is addressed promptly to ensure your journey is a pleasurable experience. I would definitely travel with Viking again in the future and recommend them to friends and family. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
We went on this cruise because of the itinerary. Had not been to Hong Kong or Japan. We booked this cruise onboard our last ocean cruise over a year ago. We picked the stateroom we wanted (midships). Little did we know that choosing a ... Read More
We went on this cruise because of the itinerary. Had not been to Hong Kong or Japan. We booked this cruise onboard our last ocean cruise over a year ago. We picked the stateroom we wanted (midships). Little did we know that choosing a lower level cabin we would not have all the rights of people who booked higher levels. For example when it came my turn to book the bullet train it was sold out. When it came my turn to book dining the days and times were all sold out. This made me feel like a third class citizen. Just because we chose the area of the ship we were penalized and had to wait for the rich and famous to book their tours and dinner. Now you might think this is sour grapes, but this is my second ocean cruise and have sailed 4 times on the river with Viking. Now for some positive things about the cruise. The staff was very friendly and really made our cruise. The ship is beautiful with less than 1000 passengers. All and all I probably will not g on another Viking ocean cruise. The included shore excursions are really pretty bad. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
This was our second Viking Ocean cruise with similar experiences on both. Viking Ocean's ships are beautifully designed and maintained. The entire ship feels like a comfortable, high end living room, with cozy nooks throughout, ... Read More
This was our second Viking Ocean cruise with similar experiences on both. Viking Ocean's ships are beautifully designed and maintained. The entire ship feels like a comfortable, high end living room, with cozy nooks throughout, lovely Scandinavian furnishings and art work, and innovative larger public spaces (this extends to cabin decor as well). Cabins are well lit with very comfortable beds and well thought out enhancements (ie. a lit vanity storage area, heated bathroom floors, some of the largest showers at sea etc.). The entire staff is cheery, helpful and welcoming, never passing by without a warm greeting. The ship has an excellent 'culture'. BUT........our positive experience was marred by poor dining room service and, to some degree by weak food offerings/preparation/quality. While we had this impression on our first Viking Ocean cruise we thought this problem was unique to that ship but, to our great disappointment, we had a duplicate experience on the Orion. Dining room service was slow and disjointed. On both cruises breakfast in the dining room was a slow affair with dishes as simple as plain pancakes taking as long as 40 minutes to prepare. On this past cruise, on one occasion when I finally did get my pancakes, they were raw and oozing of batter. On the first cruise those same pancakes were presented cold after the long wait. On this cruise, on one occasion, we entered the dining room for dinner at 7:30 with our party of 6, got our appetizers in about 15 minutes, but, at 9:00 still hadn't received our main courses. We were told that there was a slip-up with the waiter's automated ordering system, yet the waiter didn't have the sense or initiative to check on things when they were going way too long! Other dinners dragged as well, with waiters needing to be reminded of how long we had waited. Food quality was 'spotty'. Steaks and hamburgers were consistently excellent. Fish was understandably freshest at the start of the cruise, but quickly dropped off to 'only acceptable' at best (in freshness and consistency). Prepared dishes were quite greasy, and it was difficult to find appealing choices on the daily menu (often resulting in our moving to the left side of the menu----standard dishes always available). Baked goods were always excellent. The buffet at the World Cafe was also inconsistent. At one breakfast my husband took a serving spoon full of the prepared scrambled eggs. When back at his seat he saw the bottom of the scoop was green and mushy and he called over staff to point this out lest there was some danger to eating them. Bacon was often so over-cooked it was beyond crispy, requiring great effort to cut into. Buffet choices at lunch and dinner often included a variety of 'rubber chicken', fish masked by a heavy sauce, some type of carved meat, and standards such as rice, veggies and potatoes. Salad offerings were varied and fresh tasting. The buffet sushi offering at dinner was always excellent. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
Itinerary was perfect for us with concentration on Japanese ports. We wanted to sail with Viking since we only have booked with Oceania. Service is outstanding with Viking. As for restaurants, the Chef’s Table specialty is ... Read More
Itinerary was perfect for us with concentration on Japanese ports. We wanted to sail with Viking since we only have booked with Oceania. Service is outstanding with Viking. As for restaurants, the Chef’s Table specialty is fantastic. Wine pairings are very well done. Manfredi’s is way off track attempting to represent Italian cuisine. The food is just not good regardless of whatever version they are attempting to serve. The main restaurant is solid, we always had a good meal. Quality of paid excursions is top notch. Viking is using 5 star local tour guides. Enrichment seminars are great. One of the most exciting features on this ship is the Planetarium theater in the Explorer’s Lounge. Only 26 seats, so book early. The Spa area with the ice room, sauna & pool is outstanding. An extremely serene experience. While Viking could not compare to the culinary experiences on Oceania, we personally preferred Viking overall. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
We decided to do another Viking Cruise to celebrate my husband's retirement. He chose a cruise from Hong Kong to Tokyo with a 2 day extension in Hong Kong before our cruise began. Viking offered 2 Hong Kong included tours, one from ... Read More
We decided to do another Viking Cruise to celebrate my husband's retirement. He chose a cruise from Hong Kong to Tokyo with a 2 day extension in Hong Kong before our cruise began. Viking offered 2 Hong Kong included tours, one from the hotel and one from the ship. Both were very informative. We were also given information and opportunities to explore on our own, where to eat, the evening laser show, how to get around and what to be careful of. The Orion is a beautiful ship--all the Viking Ocean ships are the same so we knew our way around from our first ocean cruise. The food was excellent an a few nights were specialty dining. We mostly ate in the Restaurant or World Café, both have options for diet issues. As far as the entertainment went, there was more to do than we had time. There was a huge variety of excellent entertainment from lectures and port information, movies, shows, dancing, teas, spa and pools, music venues and miscellaneous activities. If we missed something we could watch it in our cabin later. Viking took care of every detail, we even had popcorn for the movies. Our cabin was small with a regular balcony. We like portside to enjoy arrival and departure. One night a brass band played as we left and another night there were fireworks for our departure. People gathered to wave us in and out. That was really special! The service on the ship was superior. We did all included shore excursions and we added a sightseeing excursion in Tokyo. Guides and tours were excellent, only 2 were a little disappointing, Osaka we wanted to see more and another place, it seemed the guide was a last minute substitute (I think it was Beppu). Viking is an adult only cruise. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
After quite a number of Viking river cruises my wife and I decided to try one of their ocean cruises to a long awaited destination...Japan. We certainly were not disappointed! Viking has brought the best of their river cruise ... Read More
After quite a number of Viking river cruises my wife and I decided to try one of their ocean cruises to a long awaited destination...Japan. We certainly were not disappointed! Viking has brought the best of their river cruise “philosophy” into the ocean cruising world. We felt quite at home and enjoyed this extension of Viking hospitality into the new type of adventure. As mentioned, the familiar Viking feel was present. From the design and size of the stateroom to the excellent food and beverage offerings and of course the destinations and excursions, the entire trip delivered just the right amount of luxury, style and comfort we desired. We appreciated the lack of a casino, no sketchy auction sales or the constant push to extract money from passengers one finds on the normal cruise ship. This more refined and restful experience is the perfect way to cruise and enjoy fascinating destinations. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
This was our first Viking Ocean cruise — we’d done Viking River Cruises and they were always terrific. This cruise interested us because it called on ports in Japan and China as well as Hong Kong. We were completely satisfied with ... Read More
This was our first Viking Ocean cruise — we’d done Viking River Cruises and they were always terrific. This cruise interested us because it called on ports in Japan and China as well as Hong Kong. We were completely satisfied with the cruise, including the room, dining and shipboard experience. We were a little disappointed with the shore excursions, not because they were bad, they just weren’t as good as they were on their European river cruises. We were told it was because Viking controls the tours on European river cruises but contracts them out on ocean cruises. Getting on and off the ship was easy because there were less than 800 passengers aboard, even with the Chinese immigration officials making it difficult. Passing through immigration in Japan was a piece of cake. The ship had scheduled entertainment nightly in the theater and other areas of the ship as well as dancing in the lounge. Viking’ ships are a great size, not too big and impersonal, but big enough to have the amenities and entertainment to make it fun. Hong Kong and Shanghai were wonderful places to spend time and snorkeling on Ishigaki Island was memorable. We could have given up The smaller ports for more time in the larger. Dining was first rate at the Restaurant, the Chef’s Table and Manfrettis’ and very good at the World Cafe. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
We were traveling with some friends, and were interested in the locations visited. The ship and crew were fantastic. We enjoyed the food, which we felt was diverse and of high quality. However, we were not happy with the excursions. In ... Read More
We were traveling with some friends, and were interested in the locations visited. The ship and crew were fantastic. We enjoyed the food, which we felt was diverse and of high quality. However, we were not happy with the excursions. In general, they were superficial, lacking detail in the locations visited. The local guides often had difficulties speaking the English language. These comments applied to both the included excursions, and several of the paid excursions. We had similar problems with Viking tours in the past (aboard a European River cruise). We were particularly disappointed in the "Historic Kyoto tour", and expressed our concerns to the excursion personnel on the ship on our return (as did many of the other people on this all day excursion); despite the high price of this excursion, we were not compensated in any way for the poor quality of the guide. You might be better off organizing your own private excursions. The enrichment activities onboard the ship were excellent (4 guest speakers gave numerous talks), with talks about history, geology, and (interestingly) the space program. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
We were particularly interested in visiting Japan and this cruise turned out even better than what was expected. Several months prior to cruise the itinerary was changed. South Korea was cancelled and replaced with another stop in Japan. ... Read More
We were particularly interested in visiting Japan and this cruise turned out even better than what was expected. Several months prior to cruise the itinerary was changed. South Korea was cancelled and replaced with another stop in Japan. Although it may have been nice to check off another country visited, one very limited day (due to delays through customs) would not have been very satisfying. Instead we had a longer time in a couple of ports in Japan. This was our 2nd Viking Ocean Cruise and we love their ships. The Viking Orion has the added "planetarium" which we visited on several occasions, for night sky show and several documentary movies. All other details in the ship were basically the same as on our previous cruise on the Viking Sea. * Food and restaurant selection is quite good, although there were occasional disappointments. * The spa and fitness areas are excellent and generally underused. * There are many places to explore and either enjoy quiet time or spend time socializing. * It's important to read descriptions on excursions. We usually enjoyed taking included excursions and then departing the group before returning to the ship as we love exploring on our own. We also chose a few optional excursions and they were very good. * Service from wait staff, room stewards and everyone else was excellent. * Great free (including soap) self-service laundry on each floor. * Take advantage of galley and bridge tours if you can fit them in. * Entertainment was just okay but we really don't cruise for the entertainment. Our favorite thing about Viking Cruises is the quality of the lectures. We had outstanding lectures from all four of the guest lecturers, from history to science, politics and culture. We will continue to travel with Viking. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
We choose this cruise because we had not been to China before. We were keen to do another Ocean Cruise after doing a Viking River Cruise the year before. The embarkation process was very smooth and we were on the ship in no time. These ... Read More
We choose this cruise because we had not been to China before. We were keen to do another Ocean Cruise after doing a Viking River Cruise the year before. The embarkation process was very smooth and we were on the ship in no time. These ships are really beautiful - very spacious and hard to believe there was about 800 people on board. There are so many places to go to it is easy to get lost in the first few days. We found the food on board to be of a very high standard. Sometimes when we read other reviews we find it hard to believe we were on the same ship! There were so many different places to eat and you could have any thing that you wanted, especially in the World Café. The BBQ meals on the pool deck were very good with different themes on sea days. Breakfasts always good and lots of variety for both lunch and dinner. We enjoyed both Manfredis and The Chef's Table - they were great places to eat. The crew were all amazing! It wasn't long before they knew our names and they were so efficient in their roles. We had a lot of fun with some of the bar staff especially Gary 1 and Gary 2 at the Atrium bar. Nothing was too much trouble for the crew. We went to a few of the entertainment evenings and we enjoyed them very much. Service everywhere was excellent. We enjoyed the ports we visited with some better than others. There was not a lot to see In Ishigaki but we enjoyed Okinawa and had a great guide to show us the site of the Battle of Okinawa. Shanghai was amazing - we had such a good time there. We enjoyed Qingdao although it was very busy as it was the 70th Celebrations in China. Dalian was a lovely place and we had a great tour there. The standard of tourist guides in some ports was not very good. We had one day when we walked for a very long way before the guide realised we were walking tin the wrong direction. Overall, this was a lovely cruise but we did have some issues with the time it took to get off the ship due to the Chinese immigration requirements, not Viking's fault though. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
was a wonderful trip, only had one problem and that was with having the bar in our suite stocked. If Viking would ask your liquor preference before the trip the problem would have been avoided. Cabin was very large and well appointed. ... Read More
was a wonderful trip, only had one problem and that was with having the bar in our suite stocked. If Viking would ask your liquor preference before the trip the problem would have been avoided. Cabin was very large and well appointed. The excursions were wonderful and always on time. Our cabin steward was great as well as the dining room staff. The specialty dining was very good and different from other Viking cruises we have been on. The ship was nicely appointed and the spa area was beautiful. Viking does not allow children on their cruises and they do not have casinos on their ships so if that is what you are looking for you would have to look at different cruise lines. There is really no entertainment on Viking other than lectures on the areas that you are visiting. I think the entertainment is the excursions. The buses that we took to the excursions were mostly newer and equipped with seatbelts Read Less
Sail Date September 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
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
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
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
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
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
Sail Date April 2019
Special birthday, new destinations, somewhere we have wanted to go for many years, a cruise seemed a good way to do it. Orion is a fabulous ship, the crew, facilities and comfort are first class. Travel arrangements were well ... Read More
Special birthday, new destinations, somewhere we have wanted to go for many years, a cruise seemed a good way to do it. Orion is a fabulous ship, the crew, facilities and comfort are first class. Travel arrangements were well organised and transfers were good. Stateroom is well appointed and very comfortable and has everything you could possibly want. All restaurants are exceptional, good choice and superb quality. House wines very good. Entertainment and enrichment talks very good. Unfortunately our cruise dates clashed with golden week/installation of the new Emperor, the whole of Japan was on holiday for the duration of time there. This did cause problems with a number of shore excursions and curtailed some time in port. This was the first time Viking had done this itinerary, we felt we were guinea pigs, and we were dissapointed with some of the content of the tours offered. The quiet boxes did not work very well, the guides difficult to understand. Some of the additional excursions are very expensive for what is offered, whilst we would definitely do another cruise (and are) with Viking we would be more cautious on how we spent our money. Read Less
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
Sail Date April 2019
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
Sail Date November 2018
Viking Orion Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 5.0 4.7
Dining 5.0 4.4
Entertainment 4.0 4.1
Public Rooms 5.0 4.8
Fitness Recreation 5.0 4.4
Family N/A 4.4
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.9
Enrichment 5.0 4.3
Service 4.5 4.6
Value For Money 5.0 4.1

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