Viking Star
2018 Best Overall
2018 Best for Cabins
2018 Best for Dining
5.0 / 5.0
Cruise Critic Editor Rating
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By Carolyn Spencer Brown
Cruise Critic Chief Content Strategist

Viking Star Overview

How many cruise companies can build an entirely new line and style of ship, simply because loyal customers ask for it? That's the advantage Viking Ocean Cruises -- the sister line to the already established Viking River Cruises -- enjoyed when it developed Viking Star, its first oceangoing vessel, in 2015.

About Viking Star


Pro

One of cruising's most beautiful small ships

Con

No casino and no amenities for families with young kids

Bottom Line

Terrific value for money on port-intensive cruises


Find a Viking Star Cruise

The result is a 930-passenger ship that carries some of the spirit of river cruising onto the high seas. As is the case with the line's river cruises, Viking Star is destination focused with port-intensive itineraries. Calls are longer than average, with frequent overnights. Cruisers receive a choice of included tours in every port; for-fee options are also available. Port talks are in-depth, focusing on sights and history as opposed to shopping opportunities.

Other inclusions lifted from river ships include complimentary wine and beer at lunch and dinner, transfers, and most specialty restaurants. Wi-Fi is free and unlimited, and it worked well in cabins and public areas. Perhaps the most stunning inclusion is the Nordic spa, which boasts a thalassotherapy pool, a steam room, a hot tub, a sauna, heated ceramic lounge chairs and a cold plunge pool, as well as the first "snow grotto" at sea.

This Nordic bent is felt throughout the ship. Viking owner (and native Norwegian) Torstein Hagen has put his own stamp on the line's ocean ships, with modern Scandinavian decor, luxe fabrics and leather furniture, a small historical display on Viking history and family recipes at Mamsen's, a delightful Norwegian-themed casual cafe. The attention to detail and artwork feel personal, even idiosyncratic, making the ship feel more like an intimate boutique hotel than a cruise ship.

Viking Star might not please all travelers, though. Because of the destination-intense itineraries, with few days at sea, the ship lacks some amenities to which cruisers might be accustomed. The ship has no casino and only a handful of organized activities scheduled throughout the day. Entertainment at night is inconsistent, ranging from lackluster to engaging.

Viking Oceans is unabashedly not oriented to families with young children. The minimum age to sail is 18, and no activities onboard are arranged for children.

 

Fellow Passengers

Viking Star is designed to appeal to well-traveled, curious and value-oriented travelers in the 50-plus age group (though it will also appeal to those younger). The Viking Ocean Cruises experience is not meant for families, fans of casino gambling (no casino onboard) or those seeking constant onboard entertainment.



Viking Star Dress Code

Resort casual is the prevailing dress code, with a slightly more relaxed feel during the day. The line's literature says that shorts, jeans and comfortable shoes are acceptable for daytime, but swimsuits and workout clothes should be restricted to the pool, gym and spa areas. There are no formal nights on Viking Star, but passengers do tend to dress up a bit in the evenings -- everything from slacks and blouses to dresses for women and khakis with button-downs to suits for men. Daytime dress is allowed at any time in the World Cafe buffet area.


Viking Star Gratuity

Onboard currency is the U.S. dollar. The recommended gratuity is $15 per person, per day (except when sailing out of Australia and New Zealand) and it's automatically added to onboard bills. Passengers can make adjustments by visiting the customer service desk. Alcoholic beverage purchases levy an automatic 15 percent tip. Tips are not automatically added to spa services.


Viking Star Awards

Editors’ Picks Awards

2016 Best New Ship

Cruisers’ Choice Awards

2018 Best Overall
2018 Best for Cabins
2018 Best for Dining
2018 Best for Embarkation
2018 Best for Entertainment
2018 Best for Fitness & Recreation
2018 Best for Public Rooms
2018 Best for Service
2018 Best for Shore Excursions
2018 Best for Value
2018 Best for First Timers
2017 Best Overall
2017 Best for Cabins
2017 Best for Dining
2017 Best for Embarkation
2017 Best for Entertainment
2017 Best for Fitness & Recreation
2017 Best for Public Rooms
2017 Best for Service
2017 Best for Shore Excursions
2017 Best for Value
2017 Best for First Timers
2016 Best Overall
2016 Best for Cabins
2016 Best for Dining
2016 Best for Embarkation
2016 Best for Entertainment
2016 Best for Fitness & Recreation
2016 Best for Public Rooms
2016 Best for Service
2016 Best for Shore Excursions
2016 Best for Value
2016 Best for First Timers


Viking Star Ship Stats

  • Crew: 550
  • Launched: 2015
  • Decks: 10
  • Passengers: 930
  • Registry: Malta
  • CDC Score: 94
Viking Star Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 5.0 4.8
Dining 5.0 4.7
Entertainment 3.0 4.1
Public Rooms 5.0 4.8
Fitness Recreation 5.0 4.3
Family 1.0 4.3
Shore Excursion 4.0 4.1
Enrichment 4.0 4.3
Service 5.0 4.8
Value For Money 5.0 4.4

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