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Viking Orion Cruise Review
5.0 / 5.0
Cruise Critic Editor Rating
406 Reviews

Pre cruise, excursions, extensions, transfers:

Viking Orion Cruise Review by JJSheldon

11 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: Dec 2018
  • Destination: Australia & New Zealand

A bucket list destination with a line we trusted, we are probably more disappointed because of our expectations. We feel "betrayed" by poor communication prior to the trip and then repeated disappointment with excursions and most off ship experiences. Included excursions were minimal quality, including poorly informed guides (except Sydney). When a Port Douglas extension (to see the Great Barrier Reef) was fouled due to a storm, there were no appropriate substitute provisions. We spent most of the time traveling and confined to the hotel. Final insult was attempt to charge for luggage for domestic flight back to Sydney.

Beyond the subpar included excursions, there were inadequate spots on the expensive paid excursions. So, for example, we actually never saw a kangaroo because by the time we attempted to book that (single) excisions, on first available day, the excursion was full.

And then there were the transfers. On first arrival to Sydney, we had a five hour layover before the flight arranged to Cairns. Five hours is long, but after flight from eastern US, it was an eternity. Upon return to Sydney, we were left to handle our luggage for several blocks between the terminal and the buses to the ship. In gale force, literally (Cyclone Owen), winds my rolling luggage escaped me. On the final day of the cruise, we disembarked at 7:10 in the morning and were transported to a hotel conference room to sit out the rest of the day, meals on our own, until our 8:10 flight that night. We did receive a transport to the airport where we discovered because our carrier had changed from the trip over, we owed $500NZ for baggage in excess of their allowances.

We hope Viking has not tried to expand their ocean cruise market too fast to maintain their famous quality. We'll look harder before we leap again...

JJSheldon's Full Rating Summary
Onboard Experience
Enrichment Activities
Value For Money
Public Rooms
Fitness & Recreation
Shore Excursions
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Cabin Review

Cabin Veranda 3015

Cabins are one of Viking's strong points. Caveat emptor: Onboard options are tied to your selection; ie, booking appointments, excursions. If no one makes it clear, just because you have an early option to book a veranda room (same floor plan as deluxe), THERE IS A DIFFERENCE!

Orion has a problem with shower suddenly running cold. Be prepared to dance with the cycles. Bed is too close to closet. Veranda cabins feel a bit cramped for extended cruises.

Stewards were outstanding as previous cruises; room amenities

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews

City Tour

This was the only knowledgeable guide we had on included tour. She was enjoyable and informative despite having to also tend to emergency situation with one of our group. We did the gardens, MacQuairies Chair, and Bondi Bch.

View All 22 City Tour Reviews
City Tour

Mediocre at best. Sad because Auckland is lovely.

View All 38 City Tour Reviews

Maori visit. Excellent. Must see.

View All 63 Rotorua Reviews

Toured De Papa Museum on our own. Excellent!

City Tour

Waste of time.

View All 45 City Tour Reviews
City Tour

We could have skipped this port.

View All 12 City Tour Reviews
City Tour

Mediocre at best. Depressing to see list of what might have been available.

View All 22 City Tour Reviews

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