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We booked our Viking Mediterranean Odyssey cruise and pre-stay in Venice We traveled with another couple, two close friends, who also booked with the same agency, Cruise Planners. In just about every aspect, this trip exceeded our expectations. Our pre-stay in Venice was perfect. What a wonderful city for exploring the maze of narrow streets, canals, shops, and restaurants. Viking put us up in the Hilton Molino Stucky hotel in Venice. The hotel was beautiful with very clean and spacious rooms, a great location away from the crowds, and just a short complimentary water taxi ride to St Marks Square. With our pre-stay and overnight in Venice on the ship, we had a total of three days in Venice - a great beginning to a great cruise. Our ship, the Viking Star, immediately impressed us. This ship was Viking’s first ocean ship and therefore its oldest, but you wouldn't have known that. With its modern, bright Scandinavian decor, it was one of the cleanest ships we have ever seen. Viking included complimentary wine and beer at lunch and dinner, transfers, and two on-board specialty restaurants. Wi-Fi was free and unlimited, and it worked well in cabins and public areas – better than any of the other ships we have sailed. At sea, we were even able to use the Wi-Fi for face time and Wi-Fi phone calls, which is impossible on most cruise ships. One of the most enjoyable complementary inclusions was the Nordic spa, which had a salt water thalassotherapy pool, a steam room, a hot tub, a sauna, heated ceramic lounge chairs and a cold plunge pool, as well as a unique "snow grotto". We also enjoyed the unique infinity pool with a great view from atop the stern of the ship as we cruised along. The ship layout was easy to learn, and navigate as it had a nice, common sense flow to its design. Before our trip we attended a Viking presentation and were told that a ship of this size would normally accommodate about 1200 passengers, yet Viking reduces that to 930 passengers, giving the ship a less crowded feel. This isn't something I put a lot of faith in. After all, when is the last time you cruised and the ship didn’t feel crowded, especially around the buffet? However, Viking was right. The ship really didn’t feel crowded at all. It was easy to relax and enjoy the ship amenities, and we never had a problem getting a lounge chair like many other ships. We had stops in Split, Dubrovnik, Corfu, Naples, Rome, Florence, Monte Carlo, Marseille, and Barcelona with a day at sea. At each port, Viking supplied a free included tour. Most of these were walking tours with some better than others, but we were able to break away from the tour at any time and always had ample time to explore on our own. In addition, there were opportunities to book additional tours at cost. One of the best was an all-day small group tour with a separate tour provider, the Shore Excursion Group, that we did of the Amalfi, Positano, and Sorrento coast with two other couples – a remarkable day that we will always remember. We felt that the food on the ship was OK – not bad but not outstanding either. The important thing to note was that there are several venues for eating, so finding something to our liking was never a problem. As an example for dinner, we had choices of the two specialty restaurants (with reservations), the main dining restaurant, the world café (buffet) and a themed buffet provided at the pool-side grill. The onboard entertainment was very good, with a solo guitarist, solo pianist, string duo, house band and a house vocalist quartet. There were two occasions when local entertainment was brought onboard and we felt that Viking has the opportunity to improve their shipboard entertainment by bringing more good off-Vegas talent onboard for short periods in a manner similar to other cruiselines like Celebrity. The service from the crew was outstanding and the staff seemed genuinely cheerier than what we have seen on other cruise lines. One crew member, who had worked the cruise industry for many years, on several of the major cruise lines told us that Viking was the best company to work for. He told us they really took care of its employees and in his opinion life with Viking was much nicer than any of his other gigs. This positive attitude showed from all of the staff that we encountered throughout the ship. We had a wonderful cruise experience from Viking and Cruise Planners and look forward to more in the future.

Wonderful Viking Mediterranean Cruise

Viking Star Cruise Review by cvbanda

7 people found this helpful
Trip Details
We booked our Viking Mediterranean Odyssey cruise and pre-stay in Venice We traveled with another couple, two close friends, who also booked with the same agency, Cruise Planners. In just about every aspect, this trip exceeded our expectations. Our pre-stay in Venice was perfect. What a wonderful city for exploring the maze of narrow streets, canals, shops, and restaurants. Viking put us up in the Hilton Molino Stucky hotel in Venice. The hotel was beautiful with very clean and spacious rooms, a great location away from the crowds, and just a short complimentary water taxi ride to St Marks Square. With our pre-stay and overnight in Venice on the ship, we had a total of three days in Venice - a great beginning to a great cruise.

Our ship, the Viking Star, immediately impressed us. This ship was Viking’s first ocean ship and therefore its oldest, but you wouldn't have known that. With its modern, bright Scandinavian decor, it was one of the cleanest ships we have ever seen.

Viking included complimentary wine and beer at lunch and dinner, transfers, and two on-board specialty restaurants. Wi-Fi was free and unlimited, and it worked well in cabins and public areas – better than any of the other ships we have sailed. At sea, we were even able to use the Wi-Fi for face time and Wi-Fi phone calls, which is impossible on most cruise ships.

One of the most enjoyable complementary inclusions was the Nordic spa, which had a salt water thalassotherapy pool, a steam room, a hot tub, a sauna, heated ceramic lounge chairs and a cold plunge pool, as well as a unique "snow grotto". We also enjoyed the unique infinity pool with a great view from atop the stern of the ship as we cruised along. The ship layout was easy to learn, and navigate as it had a nice, common sense flow to its design.

Before our trip we attended a Viking presentation and were told that a ship of this size would normally accommodate about 1200 passengers, yet Viking reduces that to 930 passengers, giving the ship a less crowded feel. This isn't something I put a lot of faith in. After all, when is the last time you cruised and the ship didn’t feel crowded, especially around the buffet? However, Viking was right. The ship really didn’t feel crowded at all. It was easy to relax and enjoy the ship amenities, and we never had a problem getting a lounge chair like many other ships.

We had stops in Split, Dubrovnik, Corfu, Naples, Rome, Florence, Monte Carlo, Marseille, and Barcelona with a day at sea. At each port, Viking supplied a free included tour. Most of these were walking tours with some better than others, but we were able to break away from the tour at any time and always had ample time to explore on our own. In addition, there were opportunities to book additional tours at cost. One of the best was an all-day small group tour with a separate tour provider, the Shore Excursion Group, that we did of the Amalfi, Positano, and Sorrento coast with two other couples – a remarkable day that we will always remember.

We felt that the food on the ship was OK – not bad but not outstanding either. The important thing to note was that there are several venues for eating, so finding something to our liking was never a problem. As an example for dinner, we had choices of the two specialty restaurants (with reservations), the main dining restaurant, the world café (buffet) and a themed buffet provided at the pool-side grill.

The onboard entertainment was very good, with a solo guitarist, solo pianist, string duo, house band and a house vocalist quartet. There were two occasions when local entertainment was brought onboard and we felt that Viking has the opportunity to improve their shipboard entertainment by bringing more good off-Vegas talent onboard for short periods in a manner similar to other cruiselines like Celebrity.

The service from the crew was outstanding and the staff seemed genuinely cheerier than what we have seen on other cruise lines. One crew member, who had worked the cruise industry for many years, on several of the major cruise lines told us that Viking was the best company to work for. He told us they really took care of its employees and in his opinion life with Viking was much nicer than any of his other gigs. This positive attitude showed from all of the staff that we encountered throughout the ship.

We had a wonderful cruise experience from Viking and Cruise Planners and look forward to more in the future.
cvbanda’s Full Rating Summary
Enrichment Activities
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Dining
Public Rooms
Entertainment
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Shore Excursions
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Cabin Review

Cabin 3089
The cabin was exceptionally clean, well-appointed, spacious, and comfortsable. It had everything we needed and we were not cramped for space. The shower was large compared to other cruise lines and you could actually bend over without brushing the shower sides.

Port & Shore Excursion Reviews

  • Barcelona
    This was an included tour with Viking and was a very good tour. With many of the Viking tours, you get information overload and soon start losing interest, but this tour was done very well, got to see alot, and had some time to explore on our own.
    View All 12,984 Barcelona Cruise Port Reviews
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  • City Tour
    Nice walking tour of the city area, but as with many of the Viking included tours, we soon suffered from information overload and broke away to explore ourselves.
    View All 49 City Tour Reviews
  • Walking Tour
    Nice tour of the Dubrovnik old town area where the tour guide pointed out many things, but as with many of the Viking included tours, we soon suffered from information overload and broke away to explore ourselves.
    View All 59 Walking Tour Reviews
  • Florence (Livorno)
    This was an optional tour provided by Viking. We drove into Tuscany where all of the countryside is beautiful. We went to the lovely small town of San Gimignano where we had a walking tour of the town followed with some free time for shopping and exploring. Once back of the buds, we then went to a Tuscan winery and working farm where we had a nice included lunch with as much wine as we wanted. Our day ended with wine tasting and an opportunity to but some of their wine and olive oil. This tour was one of the highlights of our cruise.
    View All 12,984 Florence (Livorno) Cruise Port Reviews
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  • Monaco (Monte Carlo)
    We were on a Viking Cruise and offered a free included walking tour but opted to explore on our own. In the morning, we explored the older part of Monte Carlo and Palace area. It is up high and has excellent views. It was also interesting to watch the changing of the guards at the Palace. In the afternoon, we explored the area around the casino. Unbelieveable as to the cars you see as the filthy rich drive by in their Bentley's , Rolls Royce's, Ferraris and more.
    View All 484 Monaco (Monte Carlo) Cruise Port Reviews
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  • Amalfi Coast
    We did an all-day small group tour with a separate tour provider, the Shore Excursion Group, that we of the Amalfi, Positano, and Sorrento coast with two other wonderful couples. Our driver/guide met us at the cruise terminal and was able to take us all along the coastline from Amalfi to Sorrento, giving us free time to explore in Amalfi and Positano and also able to fit in a stop at a limoncello factory in Sorrento and a jewelry factory. I am an experienced cruiser and this is one of the best excursions ever. It was a remarkable day that we will always remember.
    View All 262 Amalfi Coast Reviews
  • Walking Tour
    This was an included tour of the Palace area. It was very interesting inside, but really just an average tour
    View All 32 Walking Tour Reviews
  • Doge's Palace
    Our tour of Doge's Palace was booked through Viking and was given by Trumpy Tours. We had two tour guides, one from Trump Tours and one inside the Palace itself. Unfortunately, the one inside the palace ran out of time and abruptly left us about midway into our tour. We had to scurry about just to get out of the maze of passageways and back to the boat dock with just two minutes to spare. We didn't get to see the entire complex. To Viking's credit, they stepped in after the fact and made this right for us.
    View All 40 Doge's Palace Reviews