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'.
Cabin was fine, our stewart was great.
Flower market, tretcherous walking, guide less than helpful
Waited for bus to reboard in high traffic areaView All 46 City Tour Reviews
Bus was less than comfortable, too much time just drivingView All 43 City Tour Reviews
I had been to Singapore before, and simply chose the wrong tour, again the guides were subparView All 38 City Tour Reviews
Port of disembarkation for me, and this was the most upsetting part of the cruise. It was raining steadily as we disembarked, and the Viking staff was not helpful at all. I had to insist on help down the wet, metal gangway and request and umbrella to shelter from the rain. The staff seemed more interested in getting us off the ship quickly rather than safely.
The buses took us to a delightful resort, where the entire staff treated us royally. The accommodations and luncheon were great. I wished I had booked the resort to stay longer.