We did not cruise for 32 years after some not very good experiences. Realizing the industry had changed I would look at reviews here and say to myself I am not like these people. I read a review by a man who thought his service was bad on a two week cruise because on the second day he got some breakfast on his robe and the cabin people never changed his robe. I saw numerous reviews by people who parsed the smallest thing instead of giving me the big picture. So I concluded it was not my style.
Along cam Viking Ocean and the fabulous itinerary of the Orion from Mumbai to Bankok. Reviews of Viking could not be higher. We just returned and we could not be more impressed by Viking and its crew at every level. We avoided the few passengers who wanted to compare and contrast the cruise with others. Who cares? These are like the people who think I am interested in their last doctor's appointment. I am not. Sorry.
What we loved were the lectures by former Ambassadors and the round-table discussions. The best moment for me was they had all veterans gather to tell their story. each was different yet the same. We all gained much for our entire lives from our military service. We did not come home to parades, but the anti-war movement in full voice. We felt like we had let the country down. After years and out gathering it is clear we were not the lacking the military mission of the Vietnam war was fatally flawed. Thanks Viking for providing that special bonding (even a Brit was in our group).
The passengers were predominantly Brits and we all got along well. The ports were great. We traveled on to Hong Kong on our own and we experienced unfriendliness from many people based on, we assume, the trade war and policies that are newly in place. They see their immense growth as threatened. And maybe it is and should be. Look at downtown Toledo and Kuala Lumpur and you will get the problem.
Viking is #1 for good reason. No company can meet the needs of a cruise better than they can for people who prefer no casino, kids, or glitzy shows, but lectures and fine art, books and music.
Amazingly spacious, with the latest electronics, wifi for free, and plenty of space. The bathroom is great with a heated floor.It has a terrace for every stateroom. There is a laudry room with four washers and four dryers on every floor. You do not want the stateroom directly opposite it since it garners a lot of traffic.