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We just got back from our first Viking cruise that departed Beijing and ended in Hong Kong. We traveled with another couple and had a great time. We loved China and Hong Kong. However, I am not sure I would select Viking again. Here’s why: 1. For the money, the room sizes were ridiculously small. Nicely appointed but for the thousands of dollars spent, We expected more. 2. We were very disappointed in the food. Breakfast and lunch dishes were warm not hot. Some egg dishes in the am were actually cold. Dinner was hit or miss. We had a few meals that were excellent but then other ones that were “blah”. The desserts were disappointing in general. The cookies were horrible. Our meal in Manfredi’s was very disappointing. Slow slow service and mediocre food. 3. Service was very spotty. Our cabin steward was excellent..one of the best we have had. The bar servers were also great, especially in the Explorer’s lounge. However the food servers were disorganized. We would have plates stacked up and nobody would pick up. Coffee was sometimes almost impossible to get. It was also terrible coffee unless you used the cappuccino machines. Food sometimes took forever to get even when we ate early before the rush. While everyone tried they reminded me of new employees who didn’t have a lot of experience. I wouldn’t describe the staff as experienced professionals. 4. Other staff- spa staff were great. Very helpful and friendly. Guest services ok. The personnel in the two stores were terrible. I would have fired both. The cosmetics store person was down and out unfriendly and seemed like she was in a forced labor camp. The person working in the clothing store couldn’t understand English very well and didn’t know about the products she was selling. Also not friendly. The port talks were not very helpful. Entertainment was ok..about what you would expect for a smaller ship. 5. Pool areas - excellent. We loved the first floor pool and ice baths/sauna/steam rooms. 6. Shore excursions - hit or miss. The free ones weren’t very good. As one other person reviewed, we would be dropped off and told we had an hour when 5 minutes in some cases would be enough. Why would you take people to a shopping area with high end stores that we have here in the US and give us an hour? We can get those products back home. That’s not why we took this cruise. 7. Elderly and disabled - the most frustrating part of the cruise was having to deal with all the walkers and people with mobility issues on shore excursions. Viking needs to ensure that all people signed up for the excursions can walk, get up stairs, and go two hours without going to the bathroom. If they can’t, then there should be modified excursions for those with mobility issues. Why in the world would someone sign up for a castle tour if they can’t go up steps with their cane? Same for the Great Wall and other ports. All in all we had a great time despite these annoyances. However, we will check out other cruise lines for our river cruise we plan for next year.

Viking Orion Beijing to Hong Hong

Viking Orion Cruise Review by ElizaBettyLou

6 people found this helpful
Trip Details
  • Sail Date: October 2019
  • Destination: Asia
We just got back from our first Viking cruise that departed Beijing and ended in Hong Kong. We traveled with another couple and had a great time. We loved China and Hong Kong. However, I am not sure I would select Viking again. Here’s why:

1. For the money, the room sizes were ridiculously small. Nicely appointed but for the thousands of dollars spent, We expected more.

2. We were very disappointed in the food. Breakfast and lunch dishes were warm not hot. Some egg dishes in the am were actually cold. Dinner was hit or miss. We had a few meals that were excellent but then other ones that were “blah”. The desserts were disappointing in general. The cookies were horrible. Our meal in Manfredi’s was very disappointing. Slow slow service and mediocre food.

3. Service was very spotty. Our cabin steward was excellent..one of the best we have had. The bar servers were also great, especially in the Explorer’s lounge. However the food servers were disorganized. We would have plates stacked up and nobody would pick up. Coffee was sometimes almost impossible to get. It was also terrible coffee unless you used the cappuccino machines. Food sometimes took forever to get even when we ate early before the rush. While everyone tried they reminded me of new employees who didn’t have a lot of experience. I wouldn’t describe the staff as experienced professionals.

4. Other staff- spa staff were great. Very helpful and friendly. Guest services ok. The personnel in the two stores were terrible. I would have fired both. The cosmetics store person was down and out unfriendly and seemed like she was in a forced labor camp. The person working in the clothing store couldn’t understand English very well and didn’t know about the products she was selling. Also not friendly. The port talks were not very helpful. Entertainment was ok..about what you would expect for a smaller ship.

5. Pool areas - excellent. We loved the first floor pool and ice baths/sauna/steam rooms.

6. Shore excursions - hit or miss. The free ones weren’t very good. As one other person reviewed, we would be dropped off and told we had an hour when 5 minutes in some cases would be enough. Why would you take people to a shopping area with high end stores that we have here in the US and give us an hour? We can get those products back home. That’s not why we took this cruise.

7. Elderly and disabled - the most frustrating part of the cruise was having to deal with all the walkers and people with mobility issues on shore excursions. Viking needs to ensure that all people signed up for the excursions can walk, get up stairs, and go two hours without going to the bathroom. If they can’t, then there should be modified excursions for those with mobility issues. Why in the world would someone sign up for a castle tour if they can’t go up steps with their cane? Same for the Great Wall and other ports.

All in all we had a great time despite these annoyances. However, we will check out other cruise lines for our river cruise we plan for next year.
ElizaBettyLou’s Full Rating Summary
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Cabin Review

Cabin 5047
Very nicely appointed but honestly the smallest room I have ever had on a cruise! If one person was by the closet the other couldn’t get past to go to the bathroom. I banged my leg multiple times and have bruises to show for it. Yes, you are only sleeping in the room but for the $$ paid, the rooms should be bigger. Bathrooms are very nice and have heated floors. Shower size is good for a cruise ship. Towels were not luxurious; very basic.