296 Viking Ocean Viking Orion Cruise Reviews

This was our third time to travel with Viking Cruises. In spring of 2017 we traveled the Danube river from Bucharest to Budapest. This was such a fun and exciting trip beginning in Bangkok with a two day pre-cruise stay. We enjoyed the ... Read More
This was our third time to travel with Viking Cruises. In spring of 2017 we traveled the Danube river from Bucharest to Budapest. This was such a fun and exciting trip beginning in Bangkok with a two day pre-cruise stay. We enjoyed the city market and the temples including our favorite, the Golden Reclining Buddha. The cruise journey found us visiting Jakarta, Singapore, several stopes in Malaysia and Indonesia. Bali and Komodo Island were exciting and then we were off to Darwin Australia. The first part of our curse we experienced very warm temperatures with high humidity which allowed us to spend most afternoons in the beautiful on board pools. From Darwin we experienced may beautiful cities as we cruised down the eastern coast of Australia with Cairns, Hamilton Island Brisbane and Sydney some of our favorite locations. The service was excellent throughout the ship. Our suite was top of the line with the wrap around balcony for outstanding views. The food was excellent in all of the locations, although Manfredi’s has always been our dining experience. The journey was not complete as we left Sydney on our way to Auckland New Zealand with these last fifteen days were the cherry on top of the wonderful trip. Beautiful landscapes, cities and people. Read Less
Sail Date November 2018
We have taken numerous Viking river and ocean trips. I never write reviews, however travelers need to know this trip is not worth the time or money. Until this trip we have had wonderful experiences with Viking. Picked the Bangkok, Bali ... Read More
We have taken numerous Viking river and ocean trips. I never write reviews, however travelers need to know this trip is not worth the time or money. Until this trip we have had wonderful experiences with Viking. Picked the Bangkok, Bali and Beyond because we hadn’t been to this region and the ports looked interesting. The trip started off rough when we missed a connecting flight, bad weather, and the ship. No biggy, we made our own arrangements and connected with the ship at their next port stop. Our disappointment was the excursions consisted of riding around on buses and the points of interest were not interesting. One tour in Surabaya was terrible. We were suppose to see ancient temples and we went to a temple at a run down theme park! Seriously! The port stops need to be re-evaluated, maybe not stop at so many ports, and pick the quality stops and stay longer. The staff at guest services need more training about the region and Viking systems. This ships staff in general need more training in customer service. The biggest slap was when we learned after we were on board that the “two days” in Bali amounted to four hours before we disembarked for the airport and the flight home. The 13 day trip is really 11. Is Viking’s desire to grow their company impacting their quality for quantity! Would not recommend! Read Less
Sail Date November 2018
Chose countries I was interested in exploring...Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia. I have traveled on Viking Riverboats twice before, and I was disappointed in the ocean cruise experience with Viking compared to other lines (I have ... Read More
Chose countries I was interested in exploring...Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia. I have traveled on Viking Riverboats twice before, and I was disappointed in the ocean cruise experience with Viking compared to other lines (I have traveled on Holland America, Celebrity, Royal Caribbean, and Silver Seas). Overall, I felt the excursion experience lacked attention to the travelers, as excursions sites were poor, and we spent most of the time on the bus driving around. The local tour guide companies were less than well experienced, and the guides themselves were simply not helpful beyond the script they read to us. I realize that several ports were primarily for commercial travel with few amenities geared to the passenger ships, but Viking did little to compensate for that. When we exited the ship there were no personnel in the 'tents' at the bottom of the gangway, and as a passenger you were on your own to find your way to the terminal or to the buses (somewhat dangerous in an unknown country). The preparation for off-board travel lacked useful information also. I must give complements to the onboard staff who were wonderful, taking good care of my roommate who contracted the 'noro' virus and was isolated in the room for 2 days. In my opinion, the overall experience was 'not up to Viking standards'. Read Less
Sail Date November 2018
This was our 3rd cruise on Viking Ocean, before on the Star & the Sea. Both were quite enjoyable. This one not so much! We boarded the ship in excellent health (and I have the blood work to prove it having been tested just 48 hours ... Read More
This was our 3rd cruise on Viking Ocean, before on the Star & the Sea. Both were quite enjoyable. This one not so much! We boarded the ship in excellent health (and I have the blood work to prove it having been tested just 48 hours prior to embarkation). Within 48 hours on the ship, developed ottis media (inner ear infection) which was a cause of concern. Went to sick bay & the treating doc gave me 500 mg of amoxicillin 3 times a day for 7 days. The interesting thing is while in sick bay, the nurse was a bit frazzled since they had a big emergency the evening before, no other details were provided. I can only guess. A day or two later the ship was put under quarantine and all swimming pools, and the spa were put off limits for 3 days. In The restaurant, no more self serve at the buffet. Consequently long lines developed as the staff was not equipped to handle this. After taking the amoxicillin I went again to sick bay, and requested anti diarrhea medicine as I was under the impression it was a side effect of the amoxicillin. I was told in no uncertain terms "no way this was possible" and in turn was quarantined to our cabin. Anyone can google "side effects for amoxicillin" and diarrhea is a common side effect listed. What were they talking about? So I in turn was quarantined for 3 days to my stateroom. They told me I was contagious. Guess what, my wife slept with me and stayed in the room with me for 3 days, she never developed diarrhea. And the bland food they sent up, frankly was inedible. Regarding the ports of call, we couldn't even sit out on our terrace as the air in the ports they took us to had an extreme foul smell! Fortunately we stayed in a penthouse veranda which made our 3 days incarceration a bit more comfortable. However we were warned by the ship's captain if we left the cabin we would be subject to being kicked off the ship and returning home would be our problem. Nice, you would think I could order reasonable food instead of their inedible "bland diet". Finally we gladly disembarked in Bali. Frankly we should have just booked our stay here and by passed the Viking ship. Upon returning I contacted their customer service to articulate my concerns. The person I spoke to seemed unaware that the ship was under quarantine for 3 days and she would research it and get back to me. She never did return the call, hence the impetus for my posting. We are now almost two weeks being home and are just getting over whatever we contracted on the ship. My wife while on the ship developed a cough and also ear infection which she to this day still has. Viking offered us a $300 pp credit for our next trip. A mere pittance considering we had spent in excess of $20,000 on our trip. For those considering booking this trip, it certainly did not replicate our past experiences with this line and I dare say it will be a long time before we re-book another cruise with them., Read Less
Sail Date November 2018
The ship was absolutely beautiful - new and very well designed. PRE-ARRANGED TRANSFER: Had a bit of a problem upon our midnight arrival in Bangkok when there was no one to meet us, despite assurances that there would be. After several ... Read More
The ship was absolutely beautiful - new and very well designed. PRE-ARRANGED TRANSFER: Had a bit of a problem upon our midnight arrival in Bangkok when there was no one to meet us, despite assurances that there would be. After several hours passed, we rented a van for the 1.5 hour ride to the ship (for which we were reimbursed). EXCURSIONS: Included excursions were so-so. There seemed to be a formula for sightseeing in each port: flower market, national monument and temple. Quality of guides was inconsistent with respect to understandable spoken English and initiative. BALI EXTENSION: The Bali extension excursion consisted of hours of driving to visit 3 different temples - extremely long day (10+ hours) to visit sites that were similar to each other. Would have preferred to visit some sights in Ubud, which is well known and also located closer to our Nusa Dua hotel. The Laguna hotel was very nice, and we enjoyed having 2 nights there after we disembarked from the ship. ONBOARD THE ORION: Experiences on board the Orion were lovely - variety of activities, excellent staff, well run dining venues, and public spaces that were suitable for private reading or social gatherings. So many pluses about our time on the ship! A norovirus red alert prompted the closing of pools and public parts of the spa for several days. While we appreciated the precautionary measures, the exclusion of those activities was very disappointing - especially on days at sea. Nonetheless, I loved the cruise overall and love traveling with Viking. Read Less
Sail Date November 2018
My husband and chose to go on Viking’s Orion Bangkok to Bali cruise with our good friends. They have been on a number of Viking river cruises and we have been on 6 cruises however not with Viking. The ship is beautiful and the rooms ... Read More
My husband and chose to go on Viking’s Orion Bangkok to Bali cruise with our good friends. They have been on a number of Viking river cruises and we have been on 6 cruises however not with Viking. The ship is beautiful and the rooms were as expected, small but nice. However, the “free excursions” were terrible! The ship docked so far away (1.5-2 hours each way) from what they included in the sites that the tours were mostly bus rides to, from and around the cities. We could not take one of the included tours and also pay for one of the extra tours in one day because they were scheduled so that they overlapped my 1/2 hour. Which means when the pool was closed because of the norovirus (yes, norovirus was part of this cruise) and you were back from one tour, there was not much to do other than playing games because the pools were closed and they did not add any extra activities. The crew was very attentive and friendly however there were problems that could be attributed to management (room service tray only picked up after 2 phone calls and finally put out in the hall, ice requested never delivered, unresponsive staff at pool cafe (requests for sweetener and refills) and serving out of date diet sodas in all areas of the ship dispite that being pointed out to servers). But the most unbelievable event was that we had an opened bottle of bourbon on our desk. We had 2 drinks but noticed 4 days later that the bottle was half full. We did not say anything even though we had not had another drink. A few days later, we noticed the bottle was 3/4 empty. We reported it to guest services, who said they would investigate. The next day we were told the only people that went into our room, was us! When my husband said that clearly was not true (someone came in to clean and another came in to fill mini bar) the response was that it could not be the crew because “ they are not allowed to drink”. No apology, basically we were called liars. The cruise was called Bangkok to Bali. We arrived in Bali at 6pm. There was no included excursion there because we were required to leave the boat at 8am the next morning. If we had not scheduled an extra stay there, we would not have seen anything of Bali. I would definitely not do this cruise again. I would tell anyone that if they were interested in seeing any of the cities included in the cruise to just fly to that city and hire a car to take you to the sites (as we did in Bali). We have written to Viking Cruises and although we did get a call from a representative, we were not satisfied with what she said and requested that her supervisor call. That was 6 weeks ago. It appears that Viking does not care about customer satisfaction. Read Less
Sail Date November 2018
Our voyage on the Viking Orion from Bangkok to Bali was certainly one of the most memorable cruising we have the pleasure to partake. Viking has a way to pick the best crew, and this is no exception. As this is a new ship, our review ... Read More
Our voyage on the Viking Orion from Bangkok to Bali was certainly one of the most memorable cruising we have the pleasure to partake. Viking has a way to pick the best crew, and this is no exception. As this is a new ship, our review reflects the fact that every detail has not been worked out, and polished on this ship. Our cabin configuration was very well thought of, with plenty drawers. The under bed has enough clearance to easily stow our empty luggage. A little quirk; the shower stall is designed in such a way, that one is forced to exit the stall completely to get to your towel! An extra hook adhered to the side glass panel just outside the door would solve that problem. We prefer fantail room for its views, and we enjoy sitting on the balcony for that reason. That is the reason we booked cabin #4123. Disappointingly, because of a design flaw, which blocks water drainage, we constantly have inch-deep water pooling on the balcony; and the water is not only from rain. The infinity pool above us constantly splashes water to our balcony! Our cruise mates, in the cabin directly above us (deck 5), does not have this pooling problem. We were not able to enjoy the balcony as we have in past cruises. We recommend avoiding booking cabin #4123, and #4122, for this reason. We enjoy wine pairing with our food, and definitely it is worth purchasing the beverage package. Viking wine selection and premium liquors are extensive, and the package allows liquor enjoyments outside the dining room. We were able to sample some of the best wines on a cruise, in part because of the expert guidance from our knowledgeable sommelier, Kat! We were truly excited that there is an onboard planetarium and with an astronomer crew member. We feel that the planetarium and the astronomer are not utilized to their full potential. People have to book ahead for the 3D shows, as the facility has limited seating capacity. I love watching 3D movies. Unfortunately, only one of the shows (Space travel) requiring tickets, pertained to space, or astronomy. The best presentation was conducted by the astronomer, unfortunately also have limited times. My recommendation is to try to see the Space presentation and attend the astronomer's lecture, and skip the rest. Karaoke is not for everybody, but having no karaoke in an Asian tour seems a bit extreme. We asked the Cruise Director if a karaoke session is possible, and was told that the company CEO forbid that activity on board! The trip from Bangkok to the ship docked in Laem Chabang, because of traffic, took over 2hrs! Is there a nearer port from Bangkok, other than Laem Chabang? Wouldn't it be a unique experience to for passengers to be shuttled to the ship on a fast boat, like a hydrofoil? How boarding a hydrofoil from Klong Toey on the Chao Phraya River, and shuttle us to the ship in it, if Laem Chabang is the only cruise ship friendly port from Bangkok? There is nothing worth seeing in Laem Chabang, so all tours are centered in Bangkok. Realizing how long it is to reach Bangkok, we even skipped an included 9hr tour, because we know we will be wasting at least 5 of those hours, just for the commute! Our only disaster, was our pre-cruise tour of Bangkok. The guide failed to provide us with rain gear, and we were soaked to our skins in the downpour! Viking learned from that goof, and we were given rain ponchos at every shore tours after that. Read Less
Sail Date November 2018
Viking reputation. We have been disappointed with this cruise. Most of the ports have been one to two hours bus ride from the city of destination and tours to the attractions sometimes more. We have been for the most part docked in large ... Read More
Viking reputation. We have been disappointed with this cruise. Most of the ports have been one to two hours bus ride from the city of destination and tours to the attractions sometimes more. We have been for the most part docked in large commercial ports which are not very appealing. The cabin is very nice and good service by the room attendant. Some of the other staff seems a little unenthusiastic. The “vibe” has not been great. We find the the restaurant Chefs Table is not for everyone. We had a 6:30 reservation and walked out at 7:45 still waiting for our main course. On the other hand the Italian restaurant is wonderful. It is not Vikings fault but the Norovirus has changed the onboard experience. Meal service has changed in the World Cafe. The spa, hot tubs and pools have been closed for several days. Very good haircut by hairdresser. Read Less
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
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
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
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
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
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
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
Sail Date November 2018
We were on the 15 night Far East Discovery cruise from Beijing to Hong Kong! SHIP - Brand new and very luxurious. The decor suits the Viking brand and the crowd that these ships attract. One never feels like there are 930 passengers ... Read More
We were on the 15 night Far East Discovery cruise from Beijing to Hong Kong! SHIP - Brand new and very luxurious. The decor suits the Viking brand and the crowd that these ships attract. One never feels like there are 930 passengers aboard. There is never a crowd anywhere. The longest line was when people are getting off the ship in the morning to catch buses for excursions. The 2nd longest line was at the ice cream counter in the World Cafe after lunch and dinner. (Ice cream is made fresh on board and the flavors change daily!) There are numerous sitting areas where you can go to be by yourself. The retractable roof above the main pool is a nice feature, but on some sea days the roof could not be opened due to weather or smoke from the ship's stack blowing back into the pool area. When the roof is closed, the pool area heats up and it becomes like a sauna and is almost too hot to lounge around the pool. The free launderette on every level is a great feature. Free soap is dispensed by pushing a button on the wall after starting a washing machine. I worked out on the stationary bike and washed my workout gear and did an additional load on every sea day. We only had to wait for a machine on one occasion and then for only 1/2 an hour. We had 20 ft swells for a couple of hours due to the remnants of typhoon Yutu and Viking Orion handled them very well. But, we were in the middle of the ship, so we did not feel the up and down movement that those in the very forward and aft cabins must have felt. Lots of people used the 1/4 mile walking track on level 2. Passengers are mostly retired folks from the US, UK and Canada. CABIN - Every cabin is bigger than average for a cruise ship and has its own balcony. The smallest cabins have 270 sq ft and this is the size of the majority of the cabins on the ship. We found that we had plenty of space. Closet space is well laid out and the bathroom is very spacious. Showers are plenty big enough for the average sized person. DINING - Food is excellent and there is plenty of it. Reservations are required at Manfredi's and The Chef's Table. Manfredi's is the Italian restaurant on board and it has excellent pasta and steaks. The Chef's Table has a set menu with smaller portions and the menu changes every few nights. Often after excursions, people are too tired to get dressed up, so If you don't have a reservation at either, just show up and ask if they have an available table and you will probably get seated. It helps if you are willing to share a table with others. We found some of the offerings in the Chef's Table to be a little strange for our taste. The Restaurant does not require a reservation and has great food, also. All of the above are supposed to be evening casual, but I did see a couple of people with blue jeans and one lady in tights. While a few gentleman had jackets and ties on, the vast majority did not. I brought a sports jacket and wore it only once. The World Cafe is the on board casual buffet and there is poolside dining that consists of hamburgers, hot dogs, salads, etc. We used the included room service when we had an early excursion and on sea days before going to the spa to workout. Room service always arrived within 5 minutes of the requested time.There is afternoon tea around the pool, but we were either busy or never had an appetite at the time it was offered. ENTERTAINMENT - We only attended 1 lecture on China, but it was excellent. People that we spoke to who attended other talks said they were all very good. There were two persons on board who gave lectures on Asian/Chinese culture and history and one person who was giving scientific talks. There was a Haloween party around the pool and the band played till 10 PM. A magician was on board and gave 2 really good shows. He was as much a comedian as a magician. The band and vocalists did a Beatles/Abba tribute one night. SERVICE - Every person on board the ship bends over backwards to meet all needs of the passengers.The entire crew has a smile on their face almost always. The rooms are cleaned top to bottom twice daily. PORTS - The ports that are visited are basically the ones where China has opened a cruise terminal that Viking Orion can get into. All of the cities are interesting and have their own offerings. We had to skip the Japanese islands of Okinawa and Ishigaki due to typhoon Yutu, so we had an extra sea day and an extra day in Hong Kong. Due to missing two ports, Viking gave us an on board credit while on the cruise of $150 per passenger and a $250 credit per passenger on all future Viking ocean or river cruises. The port talks were very informative. EXCURSIONS - This is where the disappointment is. While in China, be ready to visit a temple, a garden and a market in every city. The guides in Qingdao and Xiamen could barely speak English. They could answer only the simplest of questions. They had memorized a script and could really not offer much else. They are all very young and most of them tried very hard, but their inexperience at controlling a group and lack of language skills made it very difficult for them and frustrating for the people on the excursions. After the excellent guides we had on a Scenic Danube river cruise the previous year, this was a great disappointment. However, due to Hong Kong's association with England, the guides in Hong Kong were more mature and they spoke fluent English. Most of the included excursions had a market as one of the stops. There was NEVER enough time included in the schedule to really see these markets. In Xiamen, there is a pedestrian shopping area that we were only given 20 minutes to visit. It had hundreds of shops and stalls. I think the included excursions with market stops should be extended by an hour each to give passengers more time if they desire. On two excursions, meals were provided. On the included Great Wall excursion, the meal was in a hotel exhibition hall and was very 2nd rate. On the last night in Hong Kong, the meal was in a restaurant in a large shopping mall and again the food and service was only 2nd rate. The Peking duck was fatty and all our table got was pieces of skin. Both meals were similar to a cheap Chinese restaurant in the states. In Hong Kong, we were each allowed only 1 glass of wine or 1 beer or 1 soft drink with the meal. Not what you would expect on a 'luxury' cruise. BUSINESS DEALINGS - When we called to inquire about the cruise, the telephone sales rep informed us that since the port terminal in Dalian was not ready, Dalian had been removed from the itinerary and we would get a $150 on board credit per passenger due to this. After booking and receiving an email from Viking with our booking info, we logged into MyVikingJourney web site and immediately we got an alert telling us about the Dalian situation and again promising $150 on board credits. After we were on the ship for one week, the $150 credits had not shown up on our account, so I visited Guest Services and the young lady stated to me that since Dalian had been taken off the itinerary before we booked, we were not eligible for the credits. I informed her that we SHOULD get the credits since the sales rep had promised it to us AND we got an alert on MyVikingJourney that confirmed what he had said. It was apparent that she wanted me to just go away, but I stood my ground until she said she would look into the matter. A day later the credits did show up on our on board account, so I did not have to make a 2nd visit to guest services. Although this is advertised as a Beijing to Hong Kong trip, you won't see Beijing unless you do the extension. Upon arrival at Beijing airport, there is a 3 hour drive straight to the cruise ship terminal, which is actually in Tianjin. You never go into Beijing itself. We would definitely do another Viking ocean cruise. This was our first luxury cruise and I don't think the on board experience could be any better. I can only guess that the poor quality of the excursions is due to 1) Chinese ports just being opened up to western cruise lines, 2) these are the initial visits to these ports for Viking, and 3) experienced tour guides are non-existent since in most cities, only the youngest Chinese speak any English at all. Read Less
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
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
Sail Date October 2018
We love to cruise, but we are getting weary of the giant cruise ships. It takes forever to get from one space on the ship to another and there are crowds everywhere. We have read the great reviews of Vikings new ocean ships and had a ... Read More
We love to cruise, but we are getting weary of the giant cruise ships. It takes forever to get from one space on the ship to another and there are crowds everywhere. We have read the great reviews of Vikings new ocean ships and had a wonderful Viking river cruise a few years back. Once we had picked Viking we looked at itineraries that would take us someplace new. That's how we ended up on this trip form Bangkok to Hong Kong. What a great decision! This itinerary was new to Viking as well and there were a few rough spots, including the boarding process in Bangkok. They were all minor in the whole picture. The ship is beautiful and never crowed. The size allows you to quickly pop down to your room if you need a sweater and you're back in a jiff. Service was nothing short of amazing. Some areas of the ship were overly air-conditioned. We were happy we added a couple pre-trip days in Bangkok to recover from the jet lag. Our tour guide helped us arrange an in-Hotel massage that made me wish we had a couple more days. The stops in Cambodia, Vietnam and China were all fascinating and well run. Viking will be my first choice (and second choice) from this point on when we are ready to cruise. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
We chose this cruise because our travel agent brought it to our attention. She and others from our area were going and it was going to a part of the world we had never visited. The ship is great and the food is very good. With multiple ... Read More
We chose this cruise because our travel agent brought it to our attention. She and others from our area were going and it was going to a part of the world we had never visited. The ship is great and the food is very good. With multiple restaurants, there was enough variety. They were also able to accomodate my gluten free requirements. We had a wonderful suite on the 7th floor. Some of the tour descriptions were more about flowery words than about where the tour would be taking us so sometimes we were signed up for two tours that were doing basically the same thing. They were very good about allowing us to cancel tours. Some of the areas we visited were very poor. Wouldn't go back. I did enjoy seeing Haikou, China and Ha Long Bay in Vietnam. We were usually too tired in tht evening to attend the shows. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
We had never been to Asia and were interested in exploring this area of the world. We also had never done a cruise before as a couple but were impressed with the Viking review and reputation. The trip was fascinating as we got a chance to ... Read More
We had never been to Asia and were interested in exploring this area of the world. We also had never done a cruise before as a couple but were impressed with the Viking review and reputation. The trip was fascinating as we got a chance to learn about this area of the country. Each stop was a new experience and learning adventure. At the same time, we had time to relax. As my husband and I both work, it was wonderful to have this combination. The Viking experience was excellent with only a few minor glitches. The boat was beautiful and comfortable. Excellent food choices. They did a great job of offering local food that tied into each of our stops. WE also greatly enjoyed the fitness center. Our only issue was that some of the shore excursions needed improvement. This was the first time that Viking had done this itinerary and that showed in a few places. I am sure that they will iron it out as they were very interested in feedback. Based on our trip - we just booked our next trip to Australia with Viking Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
We chose this cruise because of the destinations on the itinerary & because some tours were included. We had travelled on Viking before...a river cruise. Some of the shore excursions were terrible...long bus rides...no time to see ... Read More
We chose this cruise because of the destinations on the itinerary & because some tours were included. We had travelled on Viking before...a river cruise. Some of the shore excursions were terrible...long bus rides...no time to see half of the sites. & some bad tour guides. Exception Bangkok which had a great company handling the tours. The embarkation in Mumbai was the worst we have experienced anywhere. No one seemed to know anything. When we arrived at the Airport after being delayed and arriving late, the people who were there to meet us had no idea who we were even though we had phoned Viking to tell them that KLM screwed up our flights so badly that we missed the 2 day pre excursion we had booked.& would be delayed. We sat in the airport while 5 guys tried to get us a taxi.The taxi driver took us the long way to the hotel as we would not pay the tolls on the freeway.all this in the middle of the night. The Viking personnel were overwhelmed at the hotel. We finally got on a bus to the ship only to be told that it had to have luggage removed from the previous group. We loaded on a busy street with cars and motor bikes whizzing past. Three days at sea..not enough interesting activities to relieve the boredom. No complaints at all about the quality of the service, the food, the crew or the ship itself or the food we had while off the ship on excursions. If you are going to offer city tours, you need the time to actually see sites, & take some photos from a place other than through bus windows. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
We liked the itinerary. It hit several places on our bucket list, such as Petra and the pyramids. We really enjoyed the lectures that prepared us for every stop. The staff was amazing. We adored our steward who was very attentive. And ... Read More
We liked the itinerary. It hit several places on our bucket list, such as Petra and the pyramids. We really enjoyed the lectures that prepared us for every stop. The staff was amazing. We adored our steward who was very attentive. And we felt very safe, even when we were sailing by Somalia. The ship is lovely and very well designed. The interior decorating is very Scandinavian and comfortable. There were lots of places to relax. Even though there were nearly 900 people on the ship, we never felt it was crowded. The food choices were excellent, and we probably ate more than we should have! We really enjoyed having a variety of food venues and the option to eat both inside and outside. We liked the experience so much that we signed up on board for another cruise on the ORION in Nov. 2019 -this time to Southeast Asia. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
After five wonderful Viking River cruises we decided to try Viking Ocean Cruises on their newest ship, The Orion and were were so glad that we did. The Orion is a state of the art mid-sized ship that can comfortably accommodate 930 ... Read More
After five wonderful Viking River cruises we decided to try Viking Ocean Cruises on their newest ship, The Orion and were were so glad that we did. The Orion is a state of the art mid-sized ship that can comfortably accommodate 930 passengers without feeling the least bit crowded . I had no problem getting a lounge at the pool or a seat at the bar. The SPA was amazing with experienced staff and modern and unique facilities. The dining experience was wonderful with four restaurants to choose from. The world cafe was our favorite because of the incredibly diverse menu and the kitchen would also prepare just about anything that we asked for on a moments notice. The two fine dining restaurants were both spectacular and the service was outstanding. The Viking Included Tours were good but we opted for many of the more extensive paid tours to visit special sites that were high on our wish list. The most outstanding thing about Viking is the crew and the service. They went above and beyond to make sure that our every needed was fulfilled. They were very approachable and easy to talk to and always followed up to keep us informed when we needed to make itinerary changes etc, This experience was so wonderful that we have booked another cruise on the Orion this year that starts on November 30th in Bali and cruises to Lombock, Komodo and the the entire Australian coast from Darwin to Sydney. We can hardly wait to get back on the Orion for another three weeks of pure Bliss! Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
We chose to take the pre-embarkation tour in Northern India - Delhi, Jaipur and Agra - which was sensational. Highly recommended. On embarkation day, we flew to Mumbai and had to conform with the Indian government's rule that all ... Read More
We chose to take the pre-embarkation tour in Northern India - Delhi, Jaipur and Agra - which was sensational. Highly recommended. On embarkation day, we flew to Mumbai and had to conform with the Indian government's rule that all passengers must check in through a hotel before they could get on the ship. Viking was not pleased, and the passengers were not pleased, but everyone made the best of it. Like all ocean ships in the Viking fleet, the Orion is beautiful and is one of two equipped with a planetarium. Our cabin - 6th deck, mid ship, port side was lovely, comfortable and convenient. Our steward and his aide were excellent and treated us royally. We did a mix of included and optional shore excursions - which we always do, and the experiences in India, Sri Lanka, Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand were eye-opening and fascinating. Whether dining in the sit-down restaurant, the World Café, or the specialty restaurants, you will encounter excellent food and service, and a mix of traditional and local cuisines. We attended many excellent lectures and port talks. We would rather read in our rooms than seek out the nightly entertainment, but there is plenty - stage, screen, tastings (well, okay, we did some), dancing, lounge piano. We have sailed many times - river and ocean - with Viking and keep coming back. The quality in everything Viking does is unmatched and at a very reasonable price. We like the smaller mid-sized ships, the itineraries, the service, the food, the learning, and the most interesting people we meet. You can't go wrong with Viking. Read Less
Sail Date September 2018
Viking Orion Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 5.0 4.7
Dining 5.0 4.3
Entertainment 4.0 4.1
Public Rooms 5.0 4.8
Fitness Recreation 5.0 4.3
Family N/A 4.3
Shore Excursion 4.0 3.8
Enrichment 5.0 4.3
Service 4.5 4.6
Value For Money 5.0 4.1

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