1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2019
This is our first Ocean cruise experience and it was absolutely wonderful! Our cabin was roomy and I was impressed about how the storage space was designed. The bed was really comfy and the bathroom was large for a stateroom. Although ... Read More
This is our first Ocean cruise experience and it was absolutely wonderful! Our cabin was roomy and I was impressed about how the storage space was designed. The bed was really comfy and the bathroom was large for a stateroom. Although electrical outlets in the bathroom were only for razors or toothbrushes, there were ample 220 and 110 outlets in the main cabin. I really enjoyed having a port to charge my phone and IPad near our bed. Our cabin Stewart's were also wonderful and serviced our cabin twice daily. The goodies in the refrigerator were a real treat! I can't say enough about the dining options. There were so many choices and varieties of food. On several occasions , they offered special buffets specializing in foods of the regions. Although the specialty Italian and Chefs table Restuarant were a great, we really enjoyed the open dining of the World Cafe. We visited the Explorers lounge several times to enjoy the music but we loved watching the scenery off the bow. Lastly, we want to thank Viking for arraigning the unique welcoming at some of the Ports. In Scotland, bagpipes greeted us on 2 stops and the crew welcomed us home with music and dancing. OUR CRUISE was the British Isle Explorer. Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
We visited Stockholm, St Petersburg, Tallinn and Helsinki. This was a beautiful cruise that is very well organized in every aspect. I think it also gives you a great sense of Italy and their way of life and partying. The only bad ... Read More
We visited Stockholm, St Petersburg, Tallinn and Helsinki. This was a beautiful cruise that is very well organized in every aspect. I think it also gives you a great sense of Italy and their way of life and partying. The only bad thing that I have to point out is that they have VERY small swimming pools on the ship, and this is a real problem when 3000 people want to swim at the same time. I loved the food, Italian cuisine is famous worldwide and I think there is something to eat for everyone. :))) And they have a WONDERFUL entertainment team which made me dance and stay awake every single night till God knows which hours. Important to know: - You can link your credit card to your ship card and then don't have to worry about payment. - They have totems now, so you can book your excursions there. - Embarkation and disembarkation went smoothly and without any crowds and problems. I will definitely travel with Costa again! Read Less
Sail Date: July 2019
We've been cruising with Disney before RC, and even considering the fact that Disney is much more expensive, it left us with a feeling that it was much better, especially in the food, entertainment, and general feel ( there were 2 big ... Read More
We've been cruising with Disney before RC, and even considering the fact that Disney is much more expensive, it left us with a feeling that it was much better, especially in the food, entertainment, and general feel ( there were 2 big spots of rust in the indoor pool on Serenade). Even the free food court (near the pools) in the Disney Dream was much better. What I found most irritating the design of the beds, that for some reason are half arched toward their end, so if you are a tall person like myself ( 1.92 meters) , if you sleep with legs stretched, you ankles will be outside the bed. I was told it is the same in all RC ships, and it was not comfortable at all. The RC app is a very good idea - too bad it doesn't always work in the real world and needed many restarts during the day. We tried specialty drinks ( 1 coffee, 1 alcoholic and one mocktail) , the mocktail was good but the other terrible especially for the price of 12$ before 18% tip. Quality of food in main dining room - 7/10 Main dining room service 10/10 Quality of food in Windjammer (buffet) 7/10 Service at Windjammer 9/10 The specialty restaurants (extra charge) Chops Grille (American, Meat) Giovanni's Table (Italian) 10/10 If you get a discount, you should try these. The food is noticeably better than in the main dining hall. Breakfast in Windjammer - tends to be very very busy, and it takes some times to find a place to seat. Guest services staff 10/10 Service was terrific! All staff members tried to help and find solutions, smiling, positive. Service - We got Alemao and Dehiby as waiters in the main dining hall, and Ikomang as room attendant. They were all excellent 10/10 and we gave them an extra tip. Staterooms - very clean, but design feels outdated (and uncomfortable as mentioned) Entertainment - 8/10 Daytime Activities (Rock Climbing Wall, Mini Golf, Dance Classes, Pool Side Events, Contests, Enrichment Classes, Lectures,etc.) 7/10 Arcade - very small arcade, with around 20 machines. It was deserted when I visited it during rainy days, and it was July (many kids on board) General : * I wish they would state the names of the cruise piers in each destination in advance, as it might lead to confusion when you tour by yourself. * The cruise felt like it was best for the adult crowd, less for families with children. *Embarkation - Swift and easy. Leaving the ship on disembarkation was also a very fast process, while in Disney it took a long while. *Duty free or not, the shops on the ship changes the stock everyday, but the prices are pretty expensive. I saw there a Russian chocolate they sold for 7 Euros, found it was sold for 2 Euros in St.Petersburg. * The Itinerary is pretty good, since the cruise began and ended in Stockholm and that enabled us to visit the city for a total of 5 days. The stops in Tallinn, Visby and Helsinki were too short (last boarding time 15:30 to 17:00), but those city are much less to offer than Stockholm. St.Petersburg is a marvel - try to book a cruise that docks there at least 1 night (equals 2 days in the destination). Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
We chose this cruise as a great way to explore the Baltic region and we certainly achieved that aim....The tours and lectures meant we returned home having seen and learnt so much! From arrival at Stockholm to the departure gate at ... Read More
We chose this cruise as a great way to explore the Baltic region and we certainly achieved that aim....The tours and lectures meant we returned home having seen and learnt so much! From arrival at Stockholm to the departure gate at Bergen we were looked after very thoughtfully. The senior officers were ever present and available to talk to. A small niggle about the buffet was picked up by an attentive Restaurant Manager and dealt with professionally and personally by the Head Chef. The food throughout was excellent,we enjoyed both speciality restaurants and found it easy to make extra bookings once on the ship. Viking Sea is beautifully designed with lots of interesting artwork and understated Scandinavian style. The lectures we either attended or caught up with on the cabin t.v were all relevant and interesting/ thought provoking. There was more entertainment than we expected, we particularly enjoyed the 2 guest shows by Mary Jess and the resident Viking band and singers. The musicians who entertained in many of the public areas were very accomplished. We took several of the included tours, some were better than others but all gave us an introduction to the area which we were able to follow up independently at most destinations, often aided by the complimentary shuttle bus. After reading reviews we opted to use Alla tours in St Petersburg. They were excellent and I have no hesitation in recommending them. We chose not to take a tour in Berlin instead taking the included morning trip to Rostock and then occupying ourselves in Warnemunde (a local seaside town with a long sandy beach and promenade,interesting waterfront and lots of little shops,cafes ) A day well-spent. We were lucky to enjoy good weather throughout which always helps although strong winds in Gdynia meant we were unable to dock that day, an extra day at sea was easily occupied. If you decide to take this cruise I hope you enjoy it as much as we did. Read Less
9 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2019
Viking does it right. We had a wonderful cruise sailing the Baltic Sea! Even on a full sailing the ship never felt very crowded. EMBARKATION- Super smooth. Rep at Stockholm airport and they put us in a private transfer to ship. About ... Read More
Viking does it right. We had a wonderful cruise sailing the Baltic Sea! Even on a full sailing the ship never felt very crowded. EMBARKATION- Super smooth. Rep at Stockholm airport and they put us in a private transfer to ship. About 45 minute ride. On ship in a minute after arrival Stockholm- Took included tour. Bus tour around city with quick photo stop at city hall. We then went to Vasa Museum on our own which is highly recommended. Viking provided a complimentary shuttle back to the ship every half hour from in front of the opera house. QUICK TIP: If departing from Stockholm in the morning, get up for the sail away. We left at 5:00am and the first couple hours of cruising we just idyllic St. Petersburg- We did the included bus tour with short stops at Church of Spilled Blood and St. Isaacs Cathedral. We also did the Canal Cruise which was a little disappointing. We really enjoyed the actual canal cruising but that only lasted 1 hour of a 5 hour shore excursion. The rest of the time was spent inside the 2 aforementioned churches. For $100 a person we would have enjoyed more time cruising the rivers QUICK TIP: BE VERY CAREFUL with your passport. If you lose passport you have to drive to Moscow to get a new one. Thousands of dollars and a missed cruise later you may have a story to tell but not one you want to have to tell Tallinn- This was actually our favorite port on the cruise. Such a well preserved Old Town really transports you back in time. The included tour is mostly walking with a short bus ride. We stayed on our own in the Old town area before catching the complimentary shuttle back to the ship Visby- A really surprising delightful island. About a 2 hour walking tour through the town. Loved seeing all the ruins. Highly recommended QUICK TIP: It is really windy outside the town walls. Once you get inside the walls it is more bearable Bornholm- Bus tour through the countryside with two 30 minute stops along the way in small fishing towns. We didn't particularly love this tour, although the countryside is really pretty there isn't much to see in the towns. There were amazing fields of yellow flowers in bloom. Copenhagen- 3 hour walking tour. Walk alongside the harbor to Little Mermaid statue, through Kastellet grounds, Amelienborg Palace and ending in Nyhaven area. This tour is pretty demanding and we were exhausted by the end of it. In reality you could just see these sights on your own at your own pace and with only one day in Copenhagen if I were to do it again that's what I would do. Shuttle service all day from near Nyhaven street. In the afternoon we went back into city and rented bikes. The city bikes (bycyclen white bikes) are a great way to see the city. Bike paths are everywhere so it feels pretty safe. Also they have electric engine assist which made it very easy to ride. About $3 per 30 mintues and there are stations throughout city to drop the bikes off- Highly recommended DISEMBARK- Smooth and helpful with staff everywhere assisting. The main downside is they transfer you to airport SOOO early. We arrived at CPH at 9:30am for a 1:30pm flight. The checkin counter didn't even open until 11:30am. Just be aware if you book transfers with Viking you will get there way too early, but I guess its better than the alternative. Dining- We thought the food was excellent overall. We ate most meals in world café because we enjoy the convenience of picking a little of everything. We did have 5 meals in the specialty restaurants and each was a very special experience. Manfredis was probably our favorite venue but beware portions are huge and room is loud. Chefs table is a much quieter environment with 4 course food/wine pairings. Don't miss Mamsens waffles in Explorers Lounge! The only item that was disappointing throughout the ship was the brewed coffee. It was awful. We ended up getting lattes and cappuccinos from the Viking Living room bar on Deck 1 each morning. Those were very tasty. Entertainment- Don't expect large productions but there was some performance each night. Our favorites were the Russian dancers who came onboard as well as two opera singers in Russia as well. If you don't make it out in St. Petersburg to see a ballet or other show its nice that Viking brings that local entertainment to you. Also Cruise director Bevin had a performance one night which was outstanding. The 4 piece singing group was just ok. Production was a little bit cheesy at times. Ship- Perfect size ship. Never felt crowded. Weather was nice so we enjoyed some meals outside on pool deck. Also be sure to go to Spa for steam room and ice room. Work out those sore muscles. Hope this review helps those considering this itinerary. You really cant go wrong with Viking and we keep coming back to this cruise line for the amazing food, attentive service, long times in port, no screaming kids and plenty of space onboard to relax and enjoy family and friends Read Less
Sail Date: May 2019
This was my second criuse with Viking. Did Grand European Tour that was a river cruise and wanted to try an ocean cruise. Baltic cruise was very interesting with many ports of call. Just seeing how other cultures live will open your ... Read More
This was my second criuse with Viking. Did Grand European Tour that was a river cruise and wanted to try an ocean cruise. Baltic cruise was very interesting with many ports of call. Just seeing how other cultures live will open your eyes.Viking does cruising the best! Always attentive and best value for the money. No hassle vacation. Everything included, you just have to show up. Food is amazing, great quality and variety. Staff are great and go above and beyond. Ship is comfortable with plenty to do. You won't be bored. Entertainment is professional quality. One performance received a standing ovation! Staff said this was a first for them but it was well deserved. You get front of the line to every side trip. We never waited. VIKING's passenger capacity is lower than the big ships which I like as you get to know the crew and make friends. You are catered to. You have to try Viking, either a river cruise or ocean cruise. You won't be disappointed, promise! Can't wait to go again! Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2018
we have cruised with Silversea 6 times. This cruise to the Baltics was outstanding. Stockholm, Helsinki,St Petersburg, Talinn Estonia were fabulous but Mariehamn was weak but allowed us to rest. The newly reconstructed Silver Spirit was ... Read More
we have cruised with Silversea 6 times. This cruise to the Baltics was outstanding. Stockholm, Helsinki,St Petersburg, Talinn Estonia were fabulous but Mariehamn was weak but allowed us to rest. The newly reconstructed Silver Spirit was beautiful & excellent, food was excellent & better than ever but no change of menu all week in Atlantide and Indochine so we just chose different entrees for variety. La Terraza was spectacular. We had issues with the Silversea booked air; American Airlines cancelled our flight so we traveled the next day and missed our prepaid hotel in Stockholm. After speaking with Silversea, they stepped up to the plate and assisted us for our loss.We have booked 4 additional Silversea cruises and can't wait to rejoin the ship.Service was outstanding. A perfect cruise once we got to the ship.The ship is a great size with under 600 guests. Nice chocolate desert buffet at the pool on the last evening with a great DJ. The chocolate was to die for. We do not care for the entertainment but I live in Las Vegas so I am spoiled with the world's best; I do not cruise for the weak shows. Great singers but boring shows--opera, tenors, corny productions, 1940-1950's is not my thing. Give me classic rock.They need to get into current times with the shows. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: August 2018
We chose this cruise because I wanted to cruise the Baltic Sea and my husband doesn't like big ships. I hadn't been on silversea before but I liked the itinerary and the cruising dates. My sister and her husband joined us. ... Read More
We chose this cruise because I wanted to cruise the Baltic Sea and my husband doesn't like big ships. I hadn't been on silversea before but I liked the itinerary and the cruising dates. My sister and her husband joined us. They thought the pricing was rather high and they didn't want to dress for dinner. However I convinced them it would be worth the cost and effort. After booking I was second guessing my decision because I found the SilverSea travel agent really shockingly terrible. He didn't return my phone calls or emails. I only spoke to him when I was lucky enough to reach him directly by phone. I was absolutely appalled. He never returned my sister's emails or phone calls either. Also I read some bad reviews on the chat line. Happily the cruise was fabulous in almost every way. The service was superb! Our suite was large, clean, functional and beautiful. We loved every restaurant and lounge. The decks were fantastic and the entertainment was outstanding. We had a great time in every port. The only area that didn't measure up were the SilverSea excursions. They could definitely have been much better. For example, not one of them had headsets and the groups were too large not to have them. That wasn't the only problem but I'm going into details on that. Luckily, we booked Alla Tours in St Petersburg which was excellent. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2018
After a disappointing cruise with Celebrity in 2014, we vowed we wouldn’t cruise again in a hurry. Our faith in cruising has now been restored again thanks to Viking Sun! We embarked on the Viking Homelands cruise with friends in ... Read More
After a disappointing cruise with Celebrity in 2014, we vowed we wouldn’t cruise again in a hurry. Our faith in cruising has now been restored again thanks to Viking Sun! We embarked on the Viking Homelands cruise with friends in Stockholm for 14 nights. The embarkation process was a breeze & the staff very welcoming & friendly. Viking Sun is a very stylish ship. The Scandi styling throughout is very timeless, elegant & appointed with beautiful artworks. Our penthouse veranda room was very comfortable indeed & we enjoyed a fully stocked bar fridge which was topped up daily. We also enjoyed having access to laundry facilities on each deck with detergent included. The entertainment was fantastic...an energetic young & talented group who performed in the main theatre & a trio of musicians who performed throughout the ship on a daily basis. The cruise director Bevan was also a very talented performer & was very high profile in all facets of his role which was great. We enjoyed dining in all the restaurants. We particularly enjoyed The Restaurant, Manfredis & the Chefs Table. All of the food & beverages were of a very high quality & the staff were fantastic with impeccable service. There are some beautiful public areas on this ship, namely the Wintergarten, The Explorers Lounge, the Spa & around the main pool. I particularly enjoyed a Nordic Spa Experience one evening in which a group was shown the correct way to use the sauna & snow grotto onboard ...it was so envigorating! We did the included Viking shore excursions at most ports which we found to be a great introduction to each port destination. We did two paid excursions...the 2 day Ultimate St Petersburg & Lübeck & Wismar. These were fantastic excursions with amazing meals & guides, we were very well looked after. On previous cruises we have tired of continually being touted to spend more money in specialty restaurants & beverage packages etc. Cruising with Viking is a truly relaxing experience & it’s great that all is prepaid beforehand. There are no gimmicks on board, namely casinos & art auctions. It’s no wonder Viking is so highly rated...we found this cruise to be faultless. In our opinion they’re a hard act to beat! Would totally recommend Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2018
We chose this cruise after taking a lovely and memorable river cruise with Viking. We had wanted to visit the Baltic countries on this itinerary. We were taken care of from the time we arrived in Stockholm until we checked into the airport ... Read More
We chose this cruise after taking a lovely and memorable river cruise with Viking. We had wanted to visit the Baltic countries on this itinerary. We were taken care of from the time we arrived in Stockholm until we checked into the airport in Bergen. The cruise on the Baltic was as smooth as the river cruise. This surprised us, as we had been on a previous Caribbean cruise (not a Viking cruise) that was quite rocky. The Sun and it’s crew was spectacular! The ship design and artwork were stunning and the cleanliness impeccable. The staff, to a person, was positive, professional and personable. The hiring, training and quality assurance of personnel is top notch. The staff were a team that handled themselves with a high level of friendly decorum. We ate our lunches on the Aquavit and found the food options to be plentiful and delicious. I loved the salad and salmon choices and my husband loved the meat, pizza and pasta selections. The freshness and taste of the food did not fail to delight. We often frequented the sushi bar as appetizers with early evening cocktails- heavenly! The choices for dinner in the Restaurant were plentiful and delicious. We also thoroughly enjoyed the Chef’s Table (paired wines with each course) and Manfredi’s (Italian perfection). The many areas of the ship made the ambiance relaxing and personal. We enjoyed both the infinity pool and outdoor seating on warm days and the enclosed pool area on cool days. We loved the coffee/espresso/ cappuccino machine availability 24/7. Yes, I am a coffee fanatic! We enjoyed evening cocktails in Mamsen’s- beautiful live music and ocean views. Our stateroom was lovely. It was cleaned twice daily -when we left in the a.m. and at turndown while we were at dinner. The bathroom was spacious with drawer space for personal items. The bedroom had ample plugs for phone/iPad charging and two barrel chairs for sitting. The private balcony with table and chairs was sweet for watching the world go by. My only minor comment is that the drawer space was very shallow and hanging space limited for 2 people. Truth: I bring a lot of clothes. I appreciate the fact that there are washers and dryers and irons/ironing boards on each floor with detergent -included without extra charge. I have never felt so wonderfully indulged as I did on this cruise. Yes, we booked our next Viking Ocean cruise before we left the Sun! Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2018
Loved the itinerary. Viking Sun is a beautiful new ship with fabulous service, food, and included excursions. We loved the fact that there were fewer passengers. It wasn’t a cattle car that other larger cruise lines have. We loved ... Read More
Loved the itinerary. Viking Sun is a beautiful new ship with fabulous service, food, and included excursions. We loved the fact that there were fewer passengers. It wasn’t a cattle car that other larger cruise lines have. We loved not having young children running down the hallways like other cruise lines. No children under 18 are allowed. Highlights were the optional excursions- St Petersburg Ballet. And Norway’s Flam Railway. We loved the fact that everything is included. Such as fine wines and beers for lunch and dinner. Other cruise lines charge per soda, water bottle, glass of wine or beer. The staff are super hard workers who are very nice and friendly. The spa was beautiful and it was such a wonderful experience to treat myself to a massage and facial. Our cabin was super clean, quiet, and comfortable. We loved the heated bathroom floor. I look forward to taking another Viking Ocean cruise. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: July 2018
I chose this cruise because there were many different ports and countries - and it included places we have never been like St. Petersburg, Tallinn, Helsinki, Berlin, Gdansk. The service was OVER the top! Everyone went out of their way to ... Read More
I chose this cruise because there were many different ports and countries - and it included places we have never been like St. Petersburg, Tallinn, Helsinki, Berlin, Gdansk. The service was OVER the top! Everyone went out of their way to make our cruise memorable. And although I was worried about seasickness in the Baltic, the sailing was perfect. Our cabin was much larger than we have had on other cruises and very comfortable. The ship was just immaculate as well. The many dining options offered so much variety - and the specialty restaurants do not incur an additional charge for a real gourmet treat! There were always things to do as well - use of the spa facility also did not carry an additional charge, and we loved the experience of "Nordic bathing." There were many enrichment lectures, activities, and fabulous entertainment that rivaled anything we have seen on Broadway! Read Less
10 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2018
We travelled on a cruise for the first time so we did not know what to expect. I would like to give advise to people who are in the same situation. We booked the Baltic cruise through Tallin, Helsinki and St Petersburg. I was nervous ... Read More
We travelled on a cruise for the first time so we did not know what to expect. I would like to give advise to people who are in the same situation. We booked the Baltic cruise through Tallin, Helsinki and St Petersburg. I was nervous about the fact that I have never been on a cruise and I might get seasick. Luckily, we had great weather and the sea was calm. We were told that this is mostly the case on this route. You might feel the vibrations of the motor from time to time and on the bow (front) you feel the waves more than at the stern (rear). We booked a cabin with a balcony which is totally worth the price difference to see the beautiful Stockholm archipelago in the morning when you sail out and sunbathe away from the crowded pools if you enjoy your peace and quiet. We booked the non-alcoholic drink package but soon realized that for 2 persons 40 drinks were too much. Since you are out on most days and water is available all along the cruise. We kept drinking sugary mocktails, which were delicious but surely not very healthy. Also, the prices of the regular cocktails and drinks are not too high, with a bottle of wine starting at 20 Euros during dinner and a mojito costs 7,50 Euros. In summary, I would not get a drink package at all, unless you like to get drunk and party every night. The food quality at the buffet is reasonable but it gets pretty full, so the option for a quiet dinner on your table is great, although the selection is limited and you need to dress up a little. Be aware of the dress codes: There is a forrmal dinner, a white night and a Gala dinner and although not everyone in the cruise follows, it is nice to fit in during seated dinners. In my experience, staff were extremely friendly and the service was great (we ordered breakfast in the cabin on the departure day and had it on the balcony as we cruised out of Stockholm) We had the impression that most staff look happy, which gives you a good feeling. We did experience a couple of angry guests on the other hand, shouting at the customer service staff. If you do not like criowds or screaming children, there are many ways of avoiding them. The ship is so big, you can alsways find a quiet spot on one of the decks. There are many first-timer traps that are easy to fall into: The photographs, the souvenirs, the overpriced tours, the drinks and the spa. If you are sailing in nice weather, you don't need the spa. It is tiny, dark and the sauna and steam bath are separate for men and women, so if you are a couple you cannot share the experience. There are six jacuzzis and three swimming pools, two without loud music, you can enjoy without extra payments. The spa does not have a pool, only two indoor jacuzzies and a tiny relaxing area indoors. In Tallin and Helsinki do not book tours nor use the hop on hop off buses, you can take public transportation to the center of the cities which are easy to walk along if you are used to touring on your own.In St Petersburg we took the Costa tour, it offers some advantages, such as the fact that they wait for you if you are a bit late to come back,which might happen since the traffik is so unpredictable. You also feel very safe in the bus and during the tour. You might choose to take a tour on your own, bit it is necessary to have a visa from the Russian authorities to disembark without a booked tour. In all, Costa Magica was a pleasant experience and we would like to travel again on a different route some other time. Read Less
Sail Date: May 2018
This cruise had a lot of ports that were on our bucket list. We enjoyed the three over night port stops. Our room was nice and kept very tidy by our room steward Anton and his team. It could use some more storage for clothes such as ... Read More
This cruise had a lot of ports that were on our bucket list. We enjoyed the three over night port stops. Our room was nice and kept very tidy by our room steward Anton and his team. It could use some more storage for clothes such as shelves or a few more drawers. (That’s my only complaint). The ship is beautiful. The spa with the thermal suite and snow grotto is so cool. We went as often as we could. Nice gym that we used only a few times unfortunately. The 2nd deck is great for walking laps. The food was excellent as well as the service. We ate at the Chef’s table twice and Manfredo’s twice. Both very good. I really enjoyed the outside seating at breakfast and for lunch. The pool grill was very good for burgers and sandwiches. The included beer and wine with meals was an added bonus and plentiful. The included excursions are ok. I prefer private tours with smaller group. Some where better than others. We hired private guide in ast Petersburg. TJ Travel was excellent. We also had a private guide in Berlin who was also very good. We loved our cruise so much we booked a river cruise while on board. Viking has excellent customer service. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: May 2018
This was my second return visit to Sweden 40 years after having been an exchange student there. I spent a week prior to the cruise visiting friends there. The cruise was a relaxing way to explore parts of the Baltic I had not seen before ... Read More
This was my second return visit to Sweden 40 years after having been an exchange student there. I spent a week prior to the cruise visiting friends there. The cruise was a relaxing way to explore parts of the Baltic I had not seen before such as Finland, Poland, Estonia, Russia, and Berlin. No packing and unpacking along the way. Weather was beautiful for the entire trip. Service throughout the cruise was excellent. The food was excellent with the exception of the coffee. The coffee machines were adequate but not up to the standards of the rest of the offerings. I loved the decor of the ship. It was very simple and elegant. There were a number of quiet lounges and hideaways when you just wanted to read or quietly take in the beauty outside. My wife and I enjoyed the focus on shore excursions as opposed to lavish entertainment and casinos. There was plenty to chose from. We liked the smaller size of the ship. Viking is a good fit for us! Read Less
Sail Date: May 2018
The Hermitage was a location that influenced us, but love the Baltic in late Spring. The route (which reverses) was Stockholm to Bergen, with the regular stop-offs but with the addition of Gdansk and Alborg. Gdansk exceeded ... Read More
The Hermitage was a location that influenced us, but love the Baltic in late Spring. The route (which reverses) was Stockholm to Bergen, with the regular stop-offs but with the addition of Gdansk and Alborg. Gdansk exceeded expectations, the old town is bigger than imagined and the restoration / renovations that have taken place since the fall of Communism is staggering. The relaxed ship ambience, no formal dining, open seating, no Captain's table together with more space per passenger the almost any other ship. Generous supply of good books distributed around the ship meant a week-in, we were still finding odd shelves. The free house wine "with meals" is welcomed, but just how long can you stretch the meal? The sauna is excellent, although the snow room was an anticlimax. Do not expect lavish stage shows, the theatre is too small, but enjoy individual musicians and small classical groups. A truly wonderful cruise. Oh and sunshine for 13 days! Read Less
Sail Date: May 2018
Viking is an amazing cruise line - doing almost everything right. Starting from the top, the Captain was visible the entire cruise, he has lunch on the pool deck, dinner in the Aquivit Terrace (along with other officers), and just see him ... Read More
Viking is an amazing cruise line - doing almost everything right. Starting from the top, the Captain was visible the entire cruise, he has lunch on the pool deck, dinner in the Aquivit Terrace (along with other officers), and just see him walking around. Seeing the head chef coming on board with a cart full of fresh groceries. The Cruise director and assistant Cruise Director were both always visible and not just at the evening shows. Always serving local favorites in the restaurant and the buffet. The local tour guides were mostly outstanding. This cruise had something for everybody including, g an outstanding guitar soloist, on board historical lecturers, afternoon tea and (big in my mind) NO CASINOS! The itinerary was almost perfect. (I could have used a little longer time in Stockholm and Copenhagen - Tivoli Gardens would have been spectacular at night but we departed port at 6 PM) I have previously done Viking River and thought it couldn't get better than that. Main difference was that River Cruising is 190 passengers, Ocean cruising is 950. Less intimate but just as well taken care of. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: May 2018
Kudos to Viking for targeting this niche market - smaller ships with no children allowed and with a focus on learning and history. We picked the Viking Sky Homelands Cruise specifically for these reasons - and were not disappointed at ... Read More
Kudos to Viking for targeting this niche market - smaller ships with no children allowed and with a focus on learning and history. We picked the Viking Sky Homelands Cruise specifically for these reasons - and were not disappointed at all! We started in Stockholm and finished in Bergen Norway, with several ports in between along with one complete sea day on this 15 day trip. We knew the ports would be good, but we were pleasantly surprised at how nice the ship itself was, with meal selections, friendly people, entertainment, and more. We liked that all rooms have balconies. Perfect! Ours was 5043. Wonderful room on the starboard side - quite large for a cruise ship. Love the bathrooms with the heated floors. We liked that everything is included (except tips - and those are auto put on your final bill) - so no nickel and diming. We liked that there were specialty restaurants that you could enjoy and actually get into. (Yes at first they were booked solid, but after a few days things opened up considerably) We enjoyed the wonderful buffet meals where you could eat inside or outside. We like the entertainment in the evening. Yes it was not Las Vegas, but that was expected. In fact it exceeded our expectations - never an issue of finding a seat at the theatre. The entertainment was nice and short. Finally - the itinerary - this has to be one of the best ever - the Baltics! and St. Petersburg. Loved the tour excursions included (some were a little lame to be honest) but most were excellent! Helskinki wasn't so good whereas St Petersburg, Gdansk, Copenhagen were excellent. The optional extra charge tours were even better - highlighted by the all day Norway in a Nutshell tour out of Eidiford. Ahead of each port was a education presentation - you could see it live or watch later on room TV. Most were quite good (although some were a little salesy in trying to promote the add-on tours at cost). We never felt any crowds on the ship and could wander around at any time with ease (compared to many other cruise ships we've been on). Loved that there were no casinos and no formal nights! Getting on the ship and leaving were all quite easy and no waiting. With a smaller number of people and a higher crew ratio, you get a lot of attention. Again - Viking targets a specific audience here so anyone who complains about why not this and why not that did not read their brochures or reviews on what to expect. We have already booked 2 more cruises. Read Less
Sail Date: May 2018
We had researched cruises and felt Viking would be a good fit for us and the Homelands itinerary of great interest. We met wonderful people, the service was unbelievable and the overall ambience was perfect for us. We felt the variety of ... Read More
We had researched cruises and felt Viking would be a good fit for us and the Homelands itinerary of great interest. We met wonderful people, the service was unbelievable and the overall ambience was perfect for us. We felt the variety of excursions offered was good. Two of our excursions fell a bit short of expectations due to time constraints and train breakdowns. Our room steward was exemplary as was our favorite waiter in The Restaurant. All of the wait staff and bartenders were very professional and accomodating. Our only disappointment in staff was the spa director and sone of his staff were silly and into themselves with banter and revelry instead of taking care of their guests. A couple of the Customer Service staff seemed a bit disinterested in us. The staff directly involved with us on a daily basis were THE BEST, which made up for the ones we felt fell short. We were celebrating our 40th anniversary and our children and also our TA had alerted the appropriate dept of this ahead of time, but we were not acknowledged in any way. That was a bit disappointing, but ok. Read Less
Sail Date: May 2018
We have traveled with Viking before - river cruise. We have never eaten better in our lives, our stateroom was very good and well cared for. The executive chef was even able to prepare a special meal for our 60th Wedding Anniversary. I ... Read More
We have traveled with Viking before - river cruise. We have never eaten better in our lives, our stateroom was very good and well cared for. The executive chef was even able to prepare a special meal for our 60th Wedding Anniversary. I took two items off my bucket list - Faberge Museum and the Hermitage. I wanted to take the housekeeping staff home. Every aspect of the cruise was very efficient. The trip to Berlin was long - 1`2 hour day - but worth it. We loved the Dale Factory tour in Norway and the home visit in Stavanger. We have to pay off the mortgage in the next few years but will be looking forward to our next rive cruise. The views were beautiful and we had almost no rocking of the ship. Our eyes told us were were on the water but our feet told us we were on land. Read Less
1 Helpful Vote
Sail Date: May 2018
My last name is Scandanavian and I have always wanted to travel the Baltic. That is Viking's home territory and I figured, correctly, that it would be a great trip. We upgraded to a Junior Suite and found it to be a very roomy ... Read More
My last name is Scandanavian and I have always wanted to travel the Baltic. That is Viking's home territory and I figured, correctly, that it would be a great trip. We upgraded to a Junior Suite and found it to be a very roomy suite with a great view. The no-extra-charge room service we used at breakfast quickly became a habit. Meals were delicious we particularly like Manfredi's Italian menu. The self serve restaurant offered varying choices always of high quality. My wife loved the availability of gelato. The spa was great for her with back problems and the massages helped. It was a treat to find a band and majorettes performing for us dockside in Gdansk. The ship is small enough to be friendly and large enough for plenty of variety. I tried the larger ships once and thought I would never go on another cruise. We had a great choice of excursions and enjoyed all, particularly the bus/train ride up to the Hardangervidda in Norway, the scenery was fantastic. We also got to see the Vasa in Stockholm a long time dream of mine. We met a number of interesting people including a retired reporter who had met Ho Chi Minh and General MacArthur. Read Less
Sail Date: September 2017
Itenerary, was well planned. The excretions were diverse enough to engage people of all walks of life. Sometimes towns were small enough to explore in your own. We liked having alternative dining as we are not big group diners and we ... Read More
Itenerary, was well planned. The excretions were diverse enough to engage people of all walks of life. Sometimes towns were small enough to explore in your own. We liked having alternative dining as we are not big group diners and we could comfortably dine in the smaller restaurant as a couple. The spa and gym were large enough to accommodate especially days at sea. The ships staff were very professional. The conceierge team needed more TLC & insights of ports, they should have known more so that they could guide you bette at each port.. We like to explore & prefer a more challenging experience. Not one size fits all. Doing research of available concerts, plays or entertainment to offer pre ticket options. Notify by email so that it’s more efficient. For future example we’re booked on the Venice - Athens next Sept, would of liked a pre cruise trip in Venice. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2017
Northern European counties are a part of Europe we've never visited before and we've had two previous river cruises with Viking, so when we read they'd launched several ocean ships for small ship ocean cruises we decided to ... Read More
Northern European counties are a part of Europe we've never visited before and we've had two previous river cruises with Viking, so when we read they'd launched several ocean ships for small ship ocean cruises we decided to take the plunge. What a delight. The river cruises are much more intimate and it is easier to make new friends, but with only approx. 900 passengers on the Viking Sea we enjoyed the ship a great deal and highly recommend it to all of our friends. The dining experience was world class, the entertainment was enjoyable, and the port tours were all enjoyable. The staff was world class with staff from over a dozen countries on the ship. They were very focused on making our trip memorable. This was definitely like living in a five star hotel for 18 days and the food could not have been any more spectacular. Every city we visited was terrific. St. Petersburg was a highlight of our daily shore excursions. The only excursion change I'd make is to not take the train from the port into the city of Berlin. While Berlin was interesting, we spent a total of approx. 8 hours "commuting by train" and I wish we'd stayed closer to the ship for our days excursion. There were other tours available near the port of Warnemunde, Germany. The only other change I'd recommend is to start the tour in Bergen, Norway and end in Stockholm, Sweden. We did it the opposite direction, and you have very limited flights back to the USA from Bergen, Norway. Read Less
Sail Date: September 2017
We have done a Viking River Cruise, but this was our first Ocean Cruise and we loved it. The shipboard staff was very friendly and quite efficient. The food and the service thereof was great. We didn't do to much of the ... Read More
We have done a Viking River Cruise, but this was our first Ocean Cruise and we loved it. The shipboard staff was very friendly and quite efficient. The food and the service thereof was great. We didn't do to much of the entertainment, but the excursions (included and extra) were generally very good. The cabin was very well designed and comfortable. My criticisms are few and minor, but they are: 1. There should be more than one session on the next day's excursions...the theater was always too crowded. 2. The snow room in the spa was out-of-duty the whole trip, which is really a shame when cruising Skandinavia. 3. The mix-up in Bergen due to the bicycle race should not have been a surprise to a company based in Bergen. We have booked another cruise on Viking and have nothing but rave reviews for the operation overall. We would and do recommend Viking to any of our friends. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2017
The greatest joy - short of actually being on a Regent Seven Seas cruise - is the anticipation of that day you embark upon one of the best cruising experiences in the world. The greatest responsibility after your wonderful cruise is to ... Read More
The greatest joy - short of actually being on a Regent Seven Seas cruise - is the anticipation of that day you embark upon one of the best cruising experiences in the world. The greatest responsibility after your wonderful cruise is to try to pay amaige to all the professionals that ensured that every element was on point, every meal was a joy and every day was a life fulfilling experience. Unfortunately, words fail in fully expressing how truly gratifying the decision was to once again trust Regent to deliver the perfect vacation. My wife and I accompanied the RSS Explorer from Stockholm to London. The ship was everything that has been praised in past reviews - and more! You truly feel like you are the crew's primary concern on your own personal mega-yacht. The Explorer is small enough to literally transition from fore-to-aft, atrium-to-pool deck in minutes, yet large enough to feel like no matter where you were, you still felt there was a whole ship to explore. Never was there a crowd at any venue. Always there were options where to grab a bite, to enjoy a drink or to find a calm place to sit and absorb the ambiance of the ship. We had a couple of evenings where the seas were up and you could feel the motion of the seas, but the Explorer always performed excellently and nothing moved from any spot. We were staying in Penthouse "B" Suite 818 which is perfectly located just forward of the atrium elevators/stairs but also secluded enough to be very quiet and peaceful. It was our first exposure to being afforded a Butler and found the experience to be warming and gratifying - but not a necessity. Our butler, Prakash, was never in our way but always present moments after we expressed a need or desire. The high point was Prakash's ability to provide a short notice balcony party for leaving Amsterdam. He setup high end canapés, wine(s) of choice and a semi-formal table setting. Later - it all disappeared like we had been alone in our suite. The layout of the Penthouse suites is unique to the Explorer and has been criticized, but we found it comfortable and functional. The walkin closet is sufficient for any cruise lasting up to 16-20 days. The dining venues were all exceptional - including in-suite - and match your mood at the moment. All were equal in quality and service but these subtle points are noted: Compass Rose was an enjoyable option for Breakfast or Dinner. The very competent Matire'de, Alen, and his staff always provided a welcoming atmosphere and excellent service. Alen repositioned himself at lunchtime to the La Veranda and did a equally good job of overseeing the mostly buffet venue. La Veranda was always our choice for lunch as long as we were able to return from an excursion in time. The Pool Grill which is in operation until 4:00 was a suitable option if La Veranda was missed. In addition to the buffet line offerings they also offer sandwiches and burgers to order and small entrees. One small criticism of a venue is that the portions are extra large and difficult to finish unless you limit the anti-pasti and bread, and still, might be too much. Of the specialty restaurants, the best was Prime 7 and least enjoyed was Pacific Rim - mostly because it is Asian inspired rather than authentic Asian cuisine. So, you can expect to be offered similar fare to other restaurants but with an Asian sauce. Example: Korean barbecue Lamb Chops... That didn't workout like someone might have intended. Chartreuse was a true joy - closely paring in satisfaction to Prime 7. The Coffee Connection seemed to always be ready to fill the void if you were peckish or in need of a craft coffee drink. Martina was an artist making Irish Coffees and Russian Chocolate concoctions. The Coffee Connection was also a perfect express breakfast option. We didn't hit all the production and featured performances presented in the Constellation Theatre but those we did attend were very well performed any very enjoyable. An outstanding performance one night was presented by our Cruise Director Andy Heath and his Social Hostess wife Tammy. Both are accomplished singers and were ever present throughout the cruise as the inspiration for enjoying life to its fullest. As I already stated, the services received in all the venues was exemplary and many of the staff went even above and beyond that to ensure that the passengers were very well cared for. Honestly, I can't think of any of the crew that failed in performance and maybe only one that might have needed more polishing. The ship's itinerary was " Port Intensive " with only one 'Sea Day' out of the twelve days aboard. Helsinki Finland was experienced at a leisurely pace, visiting the town market and other venues in the area. The food was interesting - if not challenging. Who knew smelt can be cooked so many ways? Saint Petersburg, which we spent three days/two nights was a treasure trove of history, architecture and culture. The Russian people treated us warmly and we were impressed with their openness and candor. On the second day my wife and I fulfilled a lifelong goal of visiting Moscow. Although this was a Regent Choice excursion and was an additional fee, it was the best 18 hours of my life. Four hours on a high-speed train to Moscow, paired with visits to the Kremlin, Red Square, the Metro Station as well as other venues filled the day with memorable sights, sounds and tastes. Visiting the previous Soviet States of Estonia (Tallinn) and Latvia (Riga) offered further insight to the wonderful people and culture of that region. Copenhagen and Amsterdam offered us beautiful vistas of wonderful architecture and quaint canals. Brussels was equally welcoming and we enjoyed experiencing the brews and concoctions of the country. The last and disembarkation port was Southampton UK which lead us to London for two nights which was a couple of nights too few to see and experience this cosmopolitan city. Saw a bunch, didn't get to experience enough. The 12 night cruise was a pleasure to take and Regent did an outstanding job. Read Less

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